Do Jeans Shrink? The Real Truth 

Do jeans shrink over time? Yes, indeed they do. By how much will it shrink? It will shrink between 2- 4% in length, but much less in width because there is less stress applied in that direction during fabric manufacturing. The more heat your jeans are exposed to, more likely they will shrink.

Do Jeans Shrink
Do Jeans Shrink

Do Jeans Shrink in Length or Width?

Jeans do shrink in length. However, most of the time width will not be reduced. It also depends on how they’re washed, what percentage of the fabric is cotton, and what polyester percentage.

Jeans are now either preshrunk or not; however, they should be washed in a cold wash and cold rinse.

Do Jeans Shrink in Length or Width

Do Jeans Get Tighter After Washing?

Yes, jeans will become tight after washing due to shrinkage. On the other hand, Jeans will stretch out more than they will shrink. They never shrink in width but just in length. They will shrink after washing but stretch out after you wear them for a few hours.

Do Jeans Shrink in Cold Water?

No, it will not. This is because cold water does not break down the fibers in denim. To prevent denim shrinkage, always use cold water when washing.

Do Jeans Shrink in Cold Water

Do Jeans Shrink When Not Worn?

If you don’t wear your jeans, they will not shrink. Leaving jeans hanging in your closet will not cause them to shrink because most shrinkage occurs during the initial washing cycle or two.

Do Jeans Naturally Shrink?

No, jeans will not shrink naturally, although they will shrink following the first wash. Jeans comprise durable cotton fabric that shrinks between 2-4% following the first wash but stretches again when worn.

Do Jeans Naturally Shrink

Is it Better to Buy Jeans Smaller or Bigger?

It is generally better to buy them small. Jeans tend to shrink when washed and expand while worn. As a result, you should always buy smaller jeans for you.

Because they will become the proper size as you wear them. Denims will become loose and too big if they fit perfectly when you buy them.

How Long Does it Take for Jeans to Stretch?

After buying your jeans, they will stretch out progressively over the next 2-3 days. Cotton denim can stretch for two months before it stops. The fabric composition of your denim will determine the duration.


So, do jeans shrink? Especially with today’s technology? Denim is typically made of 80–100% cotton. Jeans are prone to shrinking during the first few washes. 

Nowadays, polyester or elastane are added to denim fabric to make it more comfortable and form-fitting. Hence higher the percentage of lycra or polyester in denim, the more it stretches and loses shape.