White jeans are inarguably the chicest part of any casual summer look. During a time of the year where khakis run rampant and flip flops finally see the light of day, they’re one of the few warm-weather items that truly elevate your look. But as much as I love them, I find it so odd that the one time of year we’re allowed to wear white jeans is also the time of year when we’re our sweatiest and come in contact with the most dirt. How the heck are you supposed to keep white jeans bright white when you’re not really supposed to even wash your jeans?
To get the job done right, we’ll have to enlist the holy trinity of laundry: distilled water, vinegar, and baking soda.
“Baking and white vinegar are natural cleansers and distilled water is super important as, unlike tap water, it has no minerals and won’t leave behind mineral residue as it dries,” says Maeve Richmond, founder of home organizational company Maeve’s Method. “The baking soda and white vinegar are working together to create a powerful natural stain remover solution.”
For spot cleaning, fill a spray bottle with a cup of distilled water, half a cup of white vinegar, and a tablespoon of baking soda. Then spritz the spot until it’s damp, and let sit for up to 15 minutes. Blot with a clean, dry cloth and the stains should pull right up.
Once they get too icky for spot cleaning, you’ll need to throw them in the wash. “There’s no rule on how many wears you should go before you machine wash,” Richmond says. “Some experts say never machine wash jeans, as it breaks down the fibers. I’d say, if you white jeans get grungy enough that you won’t wear them again then it’s time to wash.”
Richmond suggest washing white jeans with a mix of cup of distilled water, a cup of white vinegar, and two tablespoons of baking soda.
If you have a supper stubborn stain, Richmond recommends using a natural bleach. Combine a cup of distilled water with a table spoon of lemon juice in a spray bottle. Spritz the stain, and then leave jeans on a windowsill or outside in direct sun for up to two hours. The sun and lemon will naturally bleach the jeans back to white, she says. And unlike actual bleach, Richmond says this mix won’t cause yellowing.
This genius hack will help you get your white sneakers back to their brightest white. And here’s how to get make up stains out of white T-shirts.
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