How to Restore the Blue of a Pair of Jeans

by David Lipscomb

The rich indigo hue of a new pair of jeans is part of their appeal for many wearers. Unfortunately, nearly every pair of denim jeans fades to one degree or another over time. Although some appreciate the personalized and worn-in look jeans acquire over the years, others want their jeans to remain looking store-fresh. If you're firmly in the latter camp and can't stand the faded look on your denim pieces, using a dye to get them back in shape might just be your ticket to happiness.

Items you will need

  • Old clothes
  • Hot water
  • Large pot
  • Fabric dye
  • Plastic or wooden spoon
  • Rubber gloves
  • Tongs
  • Liquid laundry soap
  • 1 cup table salt
Step 1

Change into some old clothes that you won't mind accidentally staining with dye in case of a spill.

Step 2

Fill a large pot with hot water. Ideally, boil some water, reduce to a simmer and keep it hot.

Step 3

Wet your jeans by running them under warm tap water. Get the pair completely saturated as this will help the dye to penetrate the fabric.

Step 4

Don your rubber gloves. Empty the packet of dye into the pot of hot water.

Step 5

Add the jeans to the mixture of hot water and dye. Stir occasionally with your wooden or plastic spoon. Most dye manufacturers recommend 10 to 30 minutes of saturation time, depending on the level of darkness you're attempting to achieve.

Step 6

Remove the jeans from the hot water with a set of tongs. Rinse the jeans in a sink or wash basin under tepid water until the water runs clear.

Step 7

Machine wash the jeans with 1 cup of table salt in cold water. Salt helps to preserve the color intensity, while the wash process rinses away just enough excess dye to prevent color transfer to you -- or other pieces of clothing -- next time the jeans are washed or worn.

Warnings

  • Be sure to clean your tools as soon as you're finished. Chemical and natural dyes are very powerful and can affect anything they touch if left too long on a surface.

    Always be careful around boiling water. Be sure that no children play with the dye mixture as it is very poisonous.

Photo Credits

  • Jupiterimages/Brand X Pictures/Getty Images

About the Author

David Lipscomb is a professional writer and public relations practitioner. Lipscomb brings more than a decade of experience in the consumer electronics and advertising industries. Lipscomb holds a degree in public relations from Webster University.