can you iron jeans

Can You Iron Jeans? YES! But Read on to Learn How to Do It Properly

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Washing and caring for jeans is a tricky process that requires understanding things like appropriate drying methods. But can you iron jeans to get out wrinkles caused by everyday use and washing?

That question is important to answer because it can affect how well your jeans react to various treatment methods.

Can You Iron Jeans?

So what’s the verdict: can you iron jeans?

The answer is Yes, you can!

yes you can iron jeans

It is possible to iron jeans by using a careful and controlled process. Denim is a unique material that may react differently to heat than other types of cloth, which makes care very important.

Just as important, you need to know how to iron ripped jeans and how to create creases in your jeans that will make them more attractive. The following processes will help you achieve great results.

How to Iron Jeans (in 4 Easy Steps)

Set up your ironing process by filling your iron’s water compartment to produce steam while ironing. Set the iron up safely on its end and turn on the heat to warm it up properly. Once it hits the temperature you need, you can safely press the iron on the denim to remove wrinkles and other problems. Then follow these steps:

  1. Turn the Pockets Inside Out – Start by carefully turning the pockets out while you wait for your iron to warm up. Removing them now helps to make sure that you’ll get to them later and not forget them. Press the iron gently onto the pockets and move along the fabric’s length to smooth the pockets properly.
  2. Press on the Waistband – Press on the waistband gently for a few seconds and move along its length to remove wrinkles and other imperfections. Don’t iron the fly just yet but keep it unbuttoned so that there are no zipper or fly creases. Pull the waistband up as you iron to get access to hard-to-reach places. Doing so also helps to flatten out tight spots on the jeans and make them smoother and more attractive.
  3. Line Up and Iron the Seams – Carefully adjust the seams on the legs and line them up properly so that they’re easier to iron. Press the iron down on the seams and pull the wrinkles out with your free hand as you iron. Try not to focus too long on one area of the jeans as you iron to avoid excessive heat. Keep your iron moving but use slow and controlled steps to keep it properly focused on the jeans as you work.
  4. Press and Stream – Set your iron to stream and move along the rest of the legs, carefully working out wrinkles by working along their length. Moving with them helps to smooth them out and helps work out kinks and wrinkles that may otherwise develop. You can also add a little starch to the jeans to make them easier to flatten. Press gently into the denim without applying excess pressure to work out the wrinkles.

Pro tip: if you don’t have an ironing board, try one of these “6 Ironing Board Alternatives.”

How to Iron Ripped Jeans

Ironing ripped jeans requires a careful approach because too much heat could cause damage to the ripped areas. Thankfully, this process includes most of the same basic steps, including the five steps listed above. However, we’ll include a few extra steps here that you need to follow to ensure that you don’t damage your rips and can keep them looking strategically fashionable.

  1. Identify the Rips – Look over your jeans and spot the rips, paying careful attention to how far they’ve cut into the fabric. Note each of these areas, including any stray strands that may exist around the ripped areas. Now, when you iron, you can avoid damaging these areas by ironing around them.
  2. Trimming Stray Strands – While you don’t want to cut too many ripped strands to avoid further damaging your jeans, trimming their frayed areas helps avoid potential burns. It also helps prevent more unraveling around the ripped areas. Use a pair of scissors to cut strands over two inches long or more.
  3. Iron Around the Rips – As you iron, avoid the ripped areas and iron no more than 1-2 inches near them. Doing so helps to manage wrinkles near them without worsening the rips. It also helps to keep your ripped jeans looking fashionable and gives them the rugged look that you want.

How to Crease Jeans

Follow these steps to add a permanent crease to your jeans that makes them more stylish:

  1. Wash the jeans on a high-heat setting
  2. Dry them on a high-heat to help them shrink slightly
  3. Pull the jeans out of the dryer before completely dry
  4. Fold the jeans where you want them to crease
  5. Iron the crease at high-heat several times
  6. Starch the jeans and iron over the creases again
  7. Repeat until your crease sets in your jeans

After this initial treatment, let your pants completely dry before wearing them again. This should set a permanent crease in your jeans, though it may require a few treatments to set properly.

How to Get Wrinkles Out of Jeans

If your jeans are wrinkled and you want to get them out, follow the steps below to get great results:

  1. Wash your jeans inside out in cold water and hang them out to dry
  2. Iron them with a hand-iron or steamer at a low setting to work out the wrinkles
  3. Spray with a wrinkle-release formula after finishing with your ironing
  4. Place the dried jeans in the freezer for a few hours to stiffen them a little

Frequently Asked Questions

What Setting Should I Use to Iron Jeans?

Ironing your jeans with high heat is the best way to get rid of wrinkles quickly and effectively. However, high heat does put a higher risk of potential damage. As a result, you may want to try the setting just beneath high heat and see how your jeans react before moving to higher heat levels.

Can You Steam Jeans?

Streaming your jeans can be a powerful way of removing wrinkles and getting your jeans ready for the day. However, steaming does add a little moisture to the jeans and that may affect their quality. As a result, it is important to carefully control how often you steam your jeans to avoid long-term damage.

Will Ironing My Jeans Shrink Them?

Many people will tell you that ironing your jeans will cause them to shrink. The high heat involved in ironing won’t cause them to become shorter but can shrink the waist or thighs areas if you aren’t careful. Use lower heat levels in these areas or avoid ironing them entirely. And if you’re having trouble getting your ironing board shut, check out “How to Close an Ironing Board.”

Does Ironing Stretch Jeans?

When ironing your jeans, make sure you avoid putting heat on the elastic bands because this may cause a loss of elasticity. This may cause your jeans to look saggy or even thin the fabric. It is best to avoid these areas entirely. You can also avoid this problem by only occasionally ironing your jeans or hanging them to dry.

How Do I Make My Jeans Tighter?

There are several ways to tighten your jeans, though the easiest is simply using a clothes dryer. Each time you dry your jeans this way, they’ll be a little tighter. Increase the temperature of the dryer, if possible, and dry your jeans by themselves to get the best effect with this technique.

More Ironing Tutorials:

Ken Lyons
Ken Lyons is one of the founding members of Cleaner Digs. He is also the senior editor and contributing author. Ken has owned and operated two cleaning companies in the past: one commercial and one that serviced residential customers. He writes for Clean Digs to share his professional expertise on cleaning and organization. He's been a fastidious cleaning nut and writing about it for more than a decade.