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Dryer shrunk your jeans? The 1 trick you need to stretch them out

by Anna De Souza / / Source: TODAY

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Struggling to zip up your favorite pair of jeans that just fit yesterday? Blame that long tumble in the hot dryer for shrinkage in the waistband and calves. Luckily, here at TODAY Style, we found a foolproof way to remedy such a fashion catastrophe, and it's easier than you may imagine.

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First, to get technical, that tightening phenomenon is called "consolidation shrinkage." Think of denim fibers as a long chain. When fabric is agitated during the wash and heat cycles, it causes fibers to break their bonds so the cloth gets smaller.

If it sounds complicated, don't worry, the process to get them back in shape is much simpler!

What you'll need:

  • Jeans
  • Spray bottle
  • Water
 How's this for a low-tech way to stretch your jeans? Anna De Souza

What you'll do:

1. Spray water on the areas that are snug, often the waistband or calves. The water will help release the fibers.

2. Pull, pull and pull. Focus on the problem areas to reshape the fabric. Pull fabric up and down lengthwise and apart widthwise to create give in all directions.

 You're a few tugs away from zipping up your jeans again! Anna De Souza

3. Lay them flat to air dry. This is key! Don't toss them back into the offending dryer, unless you want to repeat the whole process all over again.

Easy, no? Maybe next time your denim needs a refresh you'll head to your freezer instead!

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