How to Shrink Jeans

By nature, jeans aren't designed to be one-size-fits-all. When most people shop for jeans, they'll buy a pair that's one size too large and then shrink them so they're just the right width and length. But how do you shrink them without going too far or ruining a good pair of jeans? Here are two popular ways to shrink jeans. One uses a washing machine and dryer and the other lets you take a nice relaxing bath.

Here's how to shrink jeans with your washer and dryer:


  1. Put the jeans in the washing machine. Run the machine through a normal cycle with cold water. Don't use any detergent.
  2. Run the jeans through the spin cycle for an additional five to 10 minutes after the main wash cycle ends.
  3. Transfer the jeans to the dryer and run it on low heat until the jeans are dry [source: Shrinking Jeans with Washer and Dryer].

Here's how to shrink your jeans while taking a bath:

  1. Fill your tub with hot water (as hot as you can bear).
  2. Put on the jeans and get in the tub.
  3. Stay there until the water has cooled down.
  4. Get out of the tub and, while still wearing the jeans, sit in the sun while the jeans air dry [source: Shrinking Jeans with a Bath].