Almost everyone, from infants to grandparents, has at least one pair of jeans, but not every pair of jeans fits every person! With so many various sorts of jeans to pick from, you can find a pair that doesn’t exactly fit you. When this happens, you may question how to fade jeans to modify the color or texture to fit your preferences.
This article will explain why denim fades so quickly. There are a few simple techniques for fading jeans to the desired hue. Finally, you’ll learn how to fade jeans evenly!
9 ways to lighten black jeans
Before you start putting bleach on your favorite pair of black pants, you need to decide how light you want to go and make a reasonable goal.
Denim will degrade if you use an acidic substance on it. So, if your jeans are pitch black, it’s doubtful you’ll be able to fade them to a zombie’s skin tone without damaging them.
Also, be sure you won’t miss your black pants once you’ve faded them because there’s no turning back now.
Now that we’ve covered the key pre-fade concerns, let’s move on to some successful strategies for fading your jeans at home.
1. lighten jeans with Lemon juice
If you simply want to lighten your jeans a few shades, lemon juice is one of the greatest ways to naturally fade cloth without overdoing it. Not to add that it does not have the same strong odor as bleach.
Citric acid, found in lemons, is a natural oxidizing agent that acts to lighten when applied. When put in the sun, the lifting process accelerates greatly.
How to Use Lemon Juice to Fade Black Jeans?
As lemon juice is a weaker solution, a significant volume is required to achieve the desired concentration. You’ll need around a gallon of lemon juice in that instance.
To begin, soak your jeans in water. You’ll want them to be completely saturated and dripping, with no dry spots. Then, rinse off any extra water well.
Submerge your pants in a bathtub or pail filled with a few inches of strong lemon juice. Ensure that the lemon juice reaches every inch of the pants, leaving no pockets behind?
The method will take a few hours depending on the shade you want, so check in every hour to see how they’re progressing. Remember that your jeans will seem darker when wet, so take them out after they have darkened a few shades more than the ideal hue.
Last but not least, thoroughly clean them and dry them in the sun. Allow them to sit outside for at least a few hours to allow the lemon juice to do its work. Then you’re ready to go!
2. lighten jeans with Bleach
The most obvious benefit of utilizing bleach to fade your jeans is that it is by far the quickest and most efficient fading process. The disadvantage of bleach is that it destroys synthetic fibers and severely reduces the stretch recovery of stretch denim.
You must also examine the type of bleach to be used.
Even though chlorine bleach works well for fading denim, it does have some downsides. For starters, it will not render the denim white–instead, extended exposure will make the denim yellow. Second, if all of the bleach is not removed after the treatment, it might continue to degrade the denim!
While oxygen bleach may fade jeans, it will not completely remove color as effectively as chlorine bleach. If you want to attempt bleaching denim, this may be a safer but slower option.
Finally, as previously said, you must examine the sort of jeans you are dealing with. Bleach may permanently harm stretch jeans, so you should try a different approach for them!
To safely bleach denim, follow these steps:
- First, protect yourself and your workstation by ensuring enough ventilation. Cover your floor with plastic sheeting or an inexpensive dollar store tablecloth. Wear rubber gloves to protect your hands and eyewear if you are concerned about chemical splashes.
- Fill a big bucket halfway with chilly water. You should avoid using your bathtub or sink since the leaching dye may discolor them!
- Add two cups of bleach and mix the solution with a spoon or your gloved fingers.
- Submerge your clothes in the water with caution.
- Allow the jeans to soak for up to thirty minutes, but remove them out and reposition them in the bucket every five minutes to ensure even bleaching.
- Press the wet jeans carefully above the bucket to extract as much liquid as possible. The jeans should then be placed in another container and carried to the washing machine.
- Wash in cold water with washing detergent as normal.
- Allow your jeans to air-dry before checking the end product to determine whether you like how much the denim faded!
Alternatively, if you want to regulate the evenness of the fading, use a spray bottle to apply the bleach and water. You will, however, need to take extra precautions to safeguard yourself and your workstation if you do this!
If you use this technique, be sure you don’t accidentally spray bleach on your carpet or furnishings.
3. lighten jeans without Bleach
There are several non-bleach fading solutions available, but one of the safest is to cure your jeans with lemon juice! Did you ever use lemon juice to highlight your hair while sitting by the neighborhood pool in the summer? Lemon juice, on the other hand, has a similar effect on denim!
Lemon juice has a high citric acid content, which illuminates white garments and degrades colored materials. This all-natural substance is safe to use and can be effective, but it will not produce the same immediate and dramatic color shift as bleach does.
For this procedure, you will need to purchase bottled lemon juice. To acquire enough juice to wet your jeans, you’d have to squeeze a lot of lemons!
To apply lemon juice to your denim, follow these steps:
- Fill a bucket with two gallons of chilled water, allowing enough room for your jeans.
- Soak the jeans for a few minutes, then pull them out and roll them up to remove most of the water.
- Drain the bucket and replace it with enough lemon juice to completely soak your jeans. At the very least, two large bottles of juice from the grocery shop will be required.
- Lower your soaked pants into the liquid with caution.
- You’ll need to soak your jeans for quite some time. Check on the color every fifteen to twenty minutes until you notice fading.
- When you’re satisfied with the fading, gently take your jeans from the juice and roll them up to squeeze out any extra liquid. Then put them in a clean container to take to the washing machine.
- Use a standard cool-water washing cycle to clean the jeans. You’ll definitely see some more fading after this!
- Lemon juice may be securely poured down the drain, but be cautious not to splatter color into your tub or sink!
4. lighten jeans with Sandpaper
Sandpaper is excellent for fading only particular regions of your jeans, such as the knee, pocket locations, and so on. While it’s usually a better and simpler way to fade without chemicals, it does involve some elbow grease. It is, however, an excellent method for precisely fading your jeans.
How to Use Sandpaper to Fade Black Jeans?
To sand your jeans, you’ll need 180 grit sandpaper. If you don’t have sandpaper on hand, a pumice stone will suffice.
Make a work surface. It’s typically a good idea to sand your jeans on a level surface.
Take your sandpaper and begin to rub back and forth on the cloth in the regions you wish to fade, providing even pressure to the area. Avoid rubbing too hard, since this might sand straight through the jeans. Repeat this process for any other portions you want to be faded.
After you’ve sanded them to the correct finish, give them a good wash and put those bad boys on. You’re all set to go!
5. lighten jeans with Coffee
Believe it or not, the drink that pulls you out of bed offers additional benefits. Coffee beans’ acidic qualities are an interesting method to swiftly and easily fade black pants. The exceptional aroma is an added bonus.
How to Use Coffee to Fade Black Jeans?
Green coffee beans, also known as unroasted coffee beans, are required for the finest outcomes. If you don’t have access to these, roasted beans will suffice.
Place your clothes on a flat surface and grab a handful of coffee beans. Rub them on the regions of your jeans where you want them to fade, such as the knees, pockets, and so on.
Once you’ve achieved the desired fading, boil some water and pour it over your jeans to rinse. Then, wash and dry them regularly with detergent and fabric softener. You’re ready to rock and roll, which is great news.
6. lighten jeans with Hydrogen peroxide
Hydrogen peroxide, like bleach, may remove the color from denim. Peroxide also oxidizes color particles, allowing them to escape from the cloth. It may not work as quickly as bleach, but it is the greatest approach for achieving a white fade rather than an unsightly yellow tint.
The drawback is that, like bleach, peroxide may harm synthetic fabrics, causing your stretch pants to lose elasticity.
To guarantee a beautiful white fade, several jean experts recommend soaking denim in hydrogen peroxide following other fading processes. You may also use peroxide in your laundry to brighten white linens, towels, and shirts!
Please keep in mind that you may buy hydrogen peroxide in a variety of strengths before you begin. Check the label for the proportion of peroxide in the mixture. A higher concentration of peroxide makes the solution more effective but also more toxic to you, so wear gloves as needed!
To apply hydrogen peroxide to denim, use a soak, sponge, or spray method:
- Even though hydrogen peroxide does not emit hazardous fumes like bleach, you should still operate with a nearby fan or open window.
- Fill a bucket with cold water and two cups of peroxide for the soak technique. Submerge the jeans in the water for 15 minutes. If they appear faded enough, rinse them in the washer to remove the peroxide.
- Fill a spray bottle with a mix of water and peroxide for the spray approach, using more peroxide for a stronger fade and less for a milder fade. Spray away! Place your jeans on a clean, white cloth and spritz away! Using this technique, you can easily create a splattered or galaxy-like design, but make sure to wash the jeans as soon as you finish to remove the peroxide.
- Put on some rubber gloves and soak a sponge straight in peroxide for the sponge approach. To make a smeared fading pattern on your jeans, dab the sponge onto them. When you’re finished, rinse the jeans in the washing machine!
7. lighten jeans with Salt
The use of salt and strong churning to abrade the denim might cause it to fade. This process requires more physical effort than you may expect, so be prepared if you want to give it a shot!
Salt, like sandpaper, may roughen and abrade denim, causing the fibers to loosen and revealing the blue denim’s white core. This procedure will most likely result in a grey fade on black jeans, however washing with hydrogen peroxide as an after-treatment might lighten the fade!
To use salt to fade your jeans:
- Locate a large bucket or basin that can contain seven gallons.
- Fill it to the five-gallon mark, then add two cups of table salt.
- Immerse your jeans in seawater.
- Allow them to soak for two days, but be sure you stir them frequently! Once an hour is excellent if you can. You obviously need to sleep, so simply actively stir the jeans as much as possible!
- Remove the jeans from the saltwater with caution and keep a clean container nearby to transport them to the washing machine. To remove the salt, wash as normal in cold water.
8. lighten jeans with Washing machine
All jeans fade in the wash over time. Allowing your denim to fade gradually has the advantage of softening the fabric without weakening or damaging its fibers. The disadvantage is that it takes time!
Some jeans are pretreated to avoid fading in the wash. Raw denim is frequently sold with the warning that it should not be washed for the first six months since it may lose a lot of colors all at once!
Hot water fades denim considerably faster than cool water, but it also shrinks your jeans. Cotton shrinks quickly when exposed to dampness, thus this is a dangerous move!
Using cold water settings is the safest approach to fade your jeans in the wash. Laundry detergent has the effect of hastening the fading process. If you want to avoid fading your jeans, experts recommend skipping the detergent instead of using vinegar!
How long will your jeans take to fade in the wash? This is determined by how dark they are, to begin with! After three to four months of active wearing and cleaning, you should expect to observe some fading.
9. lighten jeans in Sun
It takes some time, but the best all-natural way to fade your jeans is to leave them out in the sun! Most natural fabrics fade when exposed to the sun for an extended period of time, however certain synthetic materials may withstand its harsh rays.
It’s simple to fade your denim in the sun. Simply wash the jeans in cold water and hang them on an outside clothesline or lay them flat on a clean bed sheet stretched out in your yard.
The tough part of this technique is that you may have to repeat the wash and outside drying process several times. If you have dark denim, you will see a change quite immediately. Paper denim may not fade as dramatically all at once as darker denim.
Frequently Asked Questions
What Is the Best Way to Lighten Dark Jeans?
Dark jeans can be lightened with a bleach-soak, repeated wearing, or abrasion. Soaking will brighten the denim throughout. Specific regions can be faded for a stylized effect by wearing and abrading the cloth.
Check out the bleach method part earlier in this post to understand how to bleach jeans properly! Keep in mind that chlorine bleach can cause more damage to your jeans, but it will also brighten them much faster. Bleaching also works better on raw denim than on black or stretch denim.
You may just wear your jeans about your house and then wash them in the washing machine to witness progressive lightning over time. If you want to speed up the process, consider wearing your pants inside out around the home! This added abrasion will cause the denim to fade to a lighter hue faster.
Finally, you may use intentional abrasion to generate lighter portions in specific sections, such as pockets and the seat. This gives your jeans a more vintage appearance! For this faux-vintage look, massage the denim with sandpaper, a pumice stone, or even a handful of coffee grounds.
How Do You Soften and Fade Blue Jeans?
New jeans frequently have a stiff texture that does not feel good, but you can simply fade and soften the stiff denim by washing it in vinegar and drying it in the sun!
Vinegar does not fade jeans on its own. Instead, it increases the dye-fastness of the denim! However, it softens the fibers in denim.
This method is fantastic for new jeans and keeps your line-dry jeans from becoming rigid as a board!
Simply combine eight cups of water and one cup of distilled white vinegar in a bucket. Allow your jeans to soak in this solution overnight before washing as usual. Then put them outside to dry in the sun!
They won’t fade much with this technique, but you’ll notice the softer texture right away!
How Do You Quickly Fade Jeans?
The bleaching process is the easiest way to fade or brighten your jeans. Bleach employs oxidation to release oxygen molecules, which break apart the dye’s color chromosomes. In practice, it makes dye particles white!
This intense chemical reaction will cause your jeans to fade swiftly. It does, however, have the potential to damage the cloth. It may also be difficult to get an even fading with this quick technique.
How Do You Evenly Fade Jeans?
It’s difficult to bleach jeans evenly, but spreading them out flat while they soak in bleach can help! You may also apply bleach with a spray bottle, which provides you with more control over the application.
If you use the bleach bucket method discussed previously in this article, agitate the jeans in the bucket on a frequent basis to achieve an even fading. This exposes the denim to bleach in all areas.
If you don’t mind the danger of turning your bathtub black or blue, you may fill it with a five-part water-to-one-part bleach solution. Then, in the bleach water, stretch your jeans out so that every section is smooth and wrinkle-free. Allow for a fifteen-minute rest before removing the jeans and cleaning them in the washing machine.
By misting bleach water over your jeans with a spray bottle, you can manage how much bleach gets to each region of the fabric. This method, on the other hand, is definitely more labor-intensive!
The Final Takeaway
Although it may appear that the only efficient approach to fade black jeans is to wear them for a long time and allow them to fade naturally, this is not always the case.
If you’re like me, you’d prefer not wait for results, and using some common home things can be a quick and easy method to speed up the fading process.