How to Wash 501 Levi's


It was in 1890 that Levi Strauss first used the lot number 501 to characterize Levi's denim waist overalls. In 1936, the red tab was added to the company's jeans to make them easier to identify from afar. Back then, washing your Levi's and keeping that red tab noticeable was likely a challenge. Today, washing your Levi's 501 jeans is a much easier task. By following very simple washing instructions, you can keep your button-fly red tabbed 501 jeans clean and looking their best.

Things You'll Need

  • Washing machine
  • Cold-water laundry detergent
  • Clothesline
  • Clothespins
  • Clothes dryer
  • Set your washing machine to "Cold Water Wash" and to the appropriate load setting for the number of pairs of jeans you will be washing.

  • Add the correct amount of cold-water laundry detergent to the washing machine as per the detergent's instructions. Allow the washing machine to fill with cold water and the the laundry detergent to mix with the water as it fills the machine.

  • Add your Levi's 501 jeans to the washing machine once it has filled with cold water. Allow the washing machine to run through a full wash and rinse cycle.

  • Remove your Levi 501 jeans from the washing machine once the wash and rinse cycles have completed. Hang dry your 501 jeans on a clothesline, using clothespins, if you want to air dry your jeans; air drying is the gentlest drying option. If you need to use the clothes dryer, set the dryer on the lowest heat setting possible and put the jeans into the dryer. Allow the dryer to complete the drying cycle, and remove your jeans from the dryer.

Tips & Warnings

  • Wear your Levi 501 jeans more than one time before washing them.
  • Using a laundry detergent other than one designed for cold-water washing may damage the cotton threads used to make your jeans and lower your jean's lifespan.

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