Raw denim care guide

KLMwear jeans are made from rough, unwashed 100% raw denim with no added elastane. Your new jeans look awesome, so it’s worth giving them a bit of attention to keep them that way. And yeah, make sure your girlfriend reads these instructions, too.

Machine wash at your own risk

By washing your jeans in the washing machine, you run the risk of damaging the structure and thereby the strength of the material, with the fabric becoming softer and pliable, and the dye fading away evenly. Since our denim was not pre-washed and stabilised during production, the jeans might shrink by as much as a size down from the original (depending on the model and size).


How to care for the jeans then?
Raw denim adapts to your body by being worn for a long time. Wear them everywhere you go and as much as you can. Forget about washing your clothes after every use. True ‘denim heads’ follow the unwritten rule of not washing the jeans in the first year of use. However, jeans get quite a rough treatment while on the bike so we’ve come up with a couple of tips how to wash them with respect to their characteristics.


When the need to wash the jeans emerges, proceed as follows:

  • Button up the jeans and turn the jeans inside out.
  • Fill a bathtub or other large vessel with sufficient amount of water, so that you can soak them completely, ideally without folding them. The optimal water temperature is around 35°C but it shouldn’t exceed 40 °C.
  • Add and let dissolve a bit of mild detergent.
  • Put the jeans in water so that they are completely immersed in water. Let them soak for 10 to 30 minutes(depending on how dirty they are). Turn the jeans from time to time and stir the water gently.
  • The dirt and grime will gradually dissolve and wash out. Expect more indigo dye during the first couple of wash cycles.
  • Next, take out the jeans, drain the water, clean the bathtub and fill it with clean cold water, clean the bathtub and fill it with clean cold water. Give the jeans a gentle rinse to rid them of any remains of detergent. Repeat this process 3 times, until the water is almost clear
  • Take the jeans out of water and let them drip dry. Do not wring them out nor spin-dry!
  • Hang the jeans to dry. Do not fold the jeans unless you really have to. Place a container under the jeans for excess water to drip in, or let them dry outdoors. In case you line dry them outdoors, we recommend drying in shade and draught.
  • Do not iron the jeans.


We’ve heard a couple of stories when girlfriends and mothers washed raw jeans. Hence this article. If they ever wonder, explain to them what exactly raw denim is.