White jeans are a summer staple for many of us. They pair
perfectly with colorful tops and tunics and look crisp and bright when they are
freshly cleaned. Keeping white jeans way, however, can be a chore, and it’s not
hard to end up with dingy looking jeans that never seem to return to their
After many a pair of yellowed or greyed white jeans, I
finally have my white jean maintenance down to a science.
First things first – While bleach would seem the natural
answer, it actually reacts negatively with some of the other materials that are
often seen in white jeans such as a cotton/poly blend and spandex. It’s
necessary in extreme situations – like the first time I splurged on a , paired them with a red and white striped top for an effortless
travel look, and immediately upon getting out of the car at the airport, walked
into the giant tire of an SUV, leaving a huge black tread mark up and down my
leg. Bleach fixed that one, but in general, steer clear or you could end up
with not so bright whites over time.
Now, on to what you should do:
- Always launder your white jeans after just a wear or two.
You don’t want dirt to set, so even if they look mostly clean, toss them in the
laundry. I finally bit the bullet and got a back up pair of my favorite white jeans so that I never have to get to that third wear, when they start to look a
- Treat stains immediately. I always have a stain stick on
hand so that even the smallest spot can be taken care of as soon as it happens.
- Tackle any spots with a stain remover before laundering. I
tend to opt for gentler stain removers for clothing to extend the life of my
garments and I love the packaging of these adorable dreft products.
- A scoop of Oxi-clean brightens whites without damaging them
like bleach. If you do nothing else to keep your white jeans white, do this.
Follow these steps and your white jeans will always look as good as new. For a few of my favorite pairs of white jeans, shop the links below.