In this article, we documented a pair of raw denim jeans worn for a year and then washed. If you have no idea of what denim is, you’re not alone. Many men don’t. We wrote a chapter about it: Raw Denim is a sub-community of the cowboy world. One big difference in denim is the way they wash their jeans.
Raw denim jeans are produced with unwashed denim. Raw jeans are not widely popular because they’re uncomfortable compared to washed jeans. Raw jeans need to be soiled.
Raw denim is stiff from a starch-like substance the denim mill applies. This stiffness helps create sharp creases in the raw jean when you sit or move. The creases are where fades appear. When you wash the jean, the starch-like substance washes out, the denim softens, and the creases become less sharp.
On those sharp creases, the discoloration is due to everyday wear and tear. The blue yarn on the top is frayed and the white yarn on the bottom is exposed. Each time a jean is washed, it loses a little color, and the contrast between dark (non-faded areas) and white (faded areas) lessens.
There are endless myths about washing raw jeans…put dirty raw jeans in the freezer to kill bacteria, but it’s been debunked. There’s…rub sand on your wholesale jeans, then swim while wearing them in the ocean. These myths add to the lore of raw denim, and they’re fun, but…
Was wearing a jean for one year worth it? Of course, so worth it I’m doing it again. What do you do for a living that you can wear the same jean for a year? You have to be careful what you ask for…I wanted to be a supermode. But that didn’t work out like I imagined.
What was the bad thing about wearing the same jean for a full year? The worst part of this process is that as soon as you get them where you want them, it’s time to wash them, make some repairs, and consider a replacement in the near future.
Did the jean ever get smelly? If so, at what point did it get smelly? YES! The jean developed a smell starting in the Spring/Summer months, roughly 7 months in. I eased it as best I could, making it overnight in the refrigerator for about 10 minutes until the jeans came to room temperature. They have a second-hand smell.