How to Make Clothes Fade Without Damaging the Fabric

If you want to fade some clothes — such as that dark pair of jeans or bright blue shirt — it will happen in time with repeated washings. Repeated washings, though, wear out clothes and shortens their lifespan. Therefore, try another fading trick and repeat to fade the clothes a bit more if desired. Try testing an old piece of clothing first to be sure the method you select works well and you can predict the results for future articles of clothing.

Fade jeans so they aren't quite as dark.

Step 1

Hang your clothes or lay them out in the sun. Many colored fabrics fade in the sunlight. Leave them in the sun for several weeks, turning them as necessary to distribute the sunlight as evenly as possible.

Step 2

Wash the clothes, such as pre-shrunk cotton fabrics, in hot water. Do not wash wool, synthetic fibers and other fabrics that are heat sensitive. Hot water fades colored clothing.

Step 3

Add liquid chlorine bleach to the washer when laundering the clothes you want to fade. Once the tub fills with water, add one cap of bleach and mix it around. Add the clothes to the water and continue with the wash.

Melissa Lewis

Melissa Lewis is a former elementary classroom teacher and media specialist. She has also written for various online publications. Lewis holds a Bachelor of Arts in psychology from the University of Maryland Baltimore County.