Everyone needs a perfect pair of jeans. And it can be a major pain in the you-know-what to try to find the right pair.

So follow these 10 steps to customize and preserve the pair of jeans that you deserve!

1. Remove odor from your jeans

Photo Credit: Brightside

If you don’t like to wash your jeans all the time, they get stinky – but if you do wash them, they wear out faster. Here’s a tip: fold your jeans in a ziplock bag and put them in the freezer overnight. That’ll get rid of any odors that may still be lingering.

2. Prevent color bleeding

Color bleeding can ruin the other clothes in your load of wash – particularly the first time a new garment gets washed. One way to prevent a catastrophe is to add salt to your wash. Add a cup of salt to the wash, and your jeans shouldn’t bleed.

Of course if you’re really paranoid about this, it’s maybe best just to wash the garment separately.

3. Wrinkle-free jeans

Once your jeans have settled into their size, you can use the maximum heat on your dryer to make sure you don’t end up with wrinkles. Also, you can toss a few ice cubes in the dryer (for real) to create more steam and get out more wrinkles. If you just want to de-wrinkle your jeans, wet a rag and throw it in there with your pants for 10-20 minutes on high, and that should do the trick.

4. Bleaching jeans

Remember that different jean colors react differently to bleach. With that in mind, fill a bucket with one part water and one part bleach. Dampen the jeans so the bleach is more effective. Depending on the look you’re going for, use a sponge, a spray bottle, or a paintbrush to apply the bleach mixture – or submerge the jeans entirely for 20-30 minutes. Only do one side at a time. Let the bleach dry for a few minutes, then rinse the jeans under cold, running water (and/or put them in the washing machine without detergent).

5. Shrinking jeans

Photo Credit: Brightside

Maybe you lost some weight, maybe you bought jeans that are just a little too big. Either way, if you need to shrink them, follow these steps. Wash your jeans in hot water, and then immediately dry them at the maximum temperature. Do this a few times in a row and your jeans will shrink.

6. Get ripped

We all know you can actually buy ripped jeans at the store now, but if you want to rip yours the homemade way, use an older pair of jeans and cut it up with a razor or a pair of scissors. You can also use a cheese grater to get a frayed look (don’t wear the jeans while you do this).

7. Faded jeans

Put a quart of concentrated lemon juice in a tub and dip your jeans in the tub with water from a hose flowing on them. Let the jeans soak for a few hours and remember to check on them periodically. Once you get the amount of fading you want, run them under water and let them dry in the sun. If you need to repeat the process, go for it.

8. Distressed jeans

Photo Credit: Deposit Photos

To achieve the distressed look, sandpaper the crap out of them before you cut. Keep the cuts 1/2″ to 3/4″ apart from each other, and cut horizontally. After you make your cuts, use tweezers to pull out the blue threads (which run horizontally). Remove the excess fabric with a lint roller. Wash the jeans immediately. After you do this, don’t wash them too often or they might fall apart…

9. Make denim one size bigger

Photo Credit: Deposit Photos

Need your jeans to be just a bit bigger? Pick the areas you want to stretch and spray them with lukewarm water. Then stand on one side and pull on the other. If you want to stretch the waist, stand on a pocket and pull the waistline. If you want to stretch the legs, spray them with water, stand on the dry parts above the knee and pull.

You can also sit in a tub full of warm water while wearing the jeans. After 15 minutes of soaking, you can stretch and pull the areas by hand to make them bigger. When they are half dry, take them off and let them fully dry in the sun.

10. Hem without a sewing machine

This is always unfortunate (and sometimes embarrassing). You rip your jeans in the crotch or the butt and you’re mortified. But it’s gonna be okay! If you don’t have a sewing machine handy (or you aren’t good at using one), use a needle and thread that is the same color as your jeans. Turn the jeans inside out. Use a straight or blanket stitch, tie it off once the stitching is complete, and iron it thoroughly. Now you’re all set! Assuming you know how to sew, of course…