I've always wondered about Nudiejeans, the popular raw (untreated) denim brand. I know styles range from $150-$600 and have been gaining popularity with fashion-savvy dudes for the past few years (see also: Canadian brand Naked & Famous). The emo hipsters in my painting class would constantly preach their no-wash virtues like you would praise a growing child.
and the Nudie website serves up lots more new-agey BS:: "Use your dry jeans as much as possible before the first wash. Six months is a good start. A pair of jeans is like a second skin where the indigo and denim are living materials. Jeans is all about passion and deep relationship – the more you wear and treat your jeans, the more beautiful they get. Your everyday life gives the denim its unique character, formed by you into a second skin – personal and naked."
They're not jeans, they're a journey!
Well, a University of Alberta student has taken the Nudie "six month start" and turned it into an experiment in human ecology. Josh Le, 20, has been wearing the same pair of Nudies for the past 15 months. He wore them nearly every day, including one month of 24-hour wear to "really let the sweat shape the creases".
--What about stains, you ask? Wipe them with a paper towel and carry on.
--What about the smell, pray tell? Le would hang the jeans up overnight to aerate. After a family trip to California he was forced to triple-bag them and stash them in the freezer.
--What about bacteria, you say? Le and his surpervising professor swabbed the jeans at the end of the 15-month wear and then compared the skin flora to that of freshly washed jeans - no difference.
Josh Le walks the halls of The UofA, Nudie clad.
So, can you wear the same pair of jeans for 15 months straight without washing them and remain free from harmful bacteria? Looks like you can. Should you? Well, all the raw denim geeks will think you are righteous and soulful; everyone else will think you're homeless.