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They’re the €170 jeans that you wear for three months, then wash in the sea... Dive into the raw denim cult

Some people will go to extraordinary lengths to get good jeans — and then won’t wash them for months. You needn’t go to such extremes but there are few better pleasures in life than a decent well-made pair

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Alex Meehan in his raw denim jeans. Photograph: Fran Veale

Alex Meehan in his raw denim jeans. Photograph: Fran Veale

Alex Meehan in his raw denim jeans. Photograph: Fran Veale

Alex Meehan in his raw denim jeans. Photograph: Fran Veale

These Native Denims jeans are the same style, pictured left as new; centre, after one wash; and, right, after a year of wear

These Native Denims jeans are the same style, pictured left as new; centre, after one wash; and, right, after a year of wear

Jeans by Native Denims

Jeans by Native Denims

Journalist Alex Meehan in his raw denim jeans. Portrait by: Fran Veale

Journalist Alex Meehan in his raw denim jeans. Portrait by: Fran Veale

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Alex Meehan in his raw denim jeans. Photograph: Fran Veale

By the time you read this I will have been wearing the same pair of jeans for 40 days straight. I spent €170 on a pair of Momotaro 15.7oz  raw-selvedge jeans from Japan, and while I haven’t yet decided whether to wear them into the sea, I probably will. I’ve also recently taken up sea-swimming, so why not combine two new lockdown hobbies into one?

If the preceding paragraph made little sense to you, then the odds are that you have yet to immerse yourself in the online subculture that sees people get excited about how long they can go without washing their jeans. These aren’t ordinary jeans though: they are raw-selvedge denim — and for enthusiasts, the longer you go without washing them the better.


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