Clothing care label on jeans

Can You Tumble Dry Jeans?

Minimising wear is essential when laundering your denim jeans. People often wonder if you can tumble dry jeans without damaging them. Some experts say no, but many others say it’s perfectly acceptable.

Tumble drying jeans is certainly an option, but it should be done with caution. Taking certain measures will help prevent potential damage. Follow the tips below to safely and effectively tumble dry your jeans.


1. Read the Garment Care Label

The garment care label of your jeans is the easiest way to determine how to dry them (and whether or not you should use the tumble dryer at all).

This label can be found on the inside of jeans and includes brief instructions for washing and drying.

If you’re not fluent in garment care label, check out our guide to laundry symbols in the UK.

In many cases, the garment care label will say tumble drying jeans is acceptable.

If the label states otherwise, make sure to closely follow the directions listed. This will ensure your jeans stay in the best condition possible.

Tumble Drying Instruction Symbols Infographic

2. Turn Jeans Inside Out Before Washing And Drying

You should always turn your jeans inside out prior to washing and drying them. This reduces abrasion on the outer fabric and therefore reduces fading.

If you have light and dark denim jeans, sort them into separate loads prior to cleaning.


3. Use a Low Heat Setting

Unless the garment care label says otherwise, it is acceptable to tumble dry jeans on a low heat setting.

This setting may be called the delicate cycle depending on your dryer. If your dryer has a no-heat option, choose that for the best results.


4. Choose Similar Settings When Washing

delicate wash cycle

Washing your denim on the delicate cycle is ideal, too. This option uses cold water and slow spinning for gentle cleaning.

Some washing machines have a hand wash cycle, and this can be to safely wash jeans, too.


5. Use Dryer Balls When Tumble Drying

wool dryer balls and plastic dryer balls

Dryer balls are a great addition when tumble drying jeans. The wool balls tumble in between layers of fabric to separate them.

This improves air circulation while clothes are drying, so your jeans are dried evenly. As an added benefit, dryer balls can also help reduce wrinkles in clothing.


6. Hang Dry Partially Damp Jeans

air drying jeans outside

Many experts suggest taking jeans out of the dryer while they are still damp. Smooth out any wrinkles by gently pulling on the fabric. Then you can hang the jeans to finish drying.

Hang drying your jeans while they’re partially damp can prevent shrinking and fading. Tumble dry denim for approximately one-half of the normal drying time.

This keeps the shape of the jeans while minimising damage. As an alternative to hang drying, you can lay your jeans flat on a clean, lint-free towel.


Final Thoughts

To summarise, you can tumble dry most jeans without ruining them. Simply be careful, and follow the steps above to ensure the best outcome.