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DIY Bleached Denim

I’ve been seeing this cool bleached look popping up in jeans and denim shorts all over the fashion scene, so I thought I’d try it out to vamp up an old denim jacket of mine. My goal was to get a half and half jacket, but I love how it came out with random splatters further up as well. I think this will be the perfect piece to add a touch of grunge to any outfit.

To get the look for yourself you’ll need about 3 cups of bleach, a denim jacket (or anything else denim), a towel, and some sort of large bucket or basin.

Pour bleach into the bucket or basin, then dip lower half of jacket into bleach. You’ll want to let it sit in the bleach for about 20min. Be sure to move it around every few minutes to make sure every spot gets well soaked. When you pull it out, everything won’t be white white, but the bleach will continue working as it dries. Let the jacket dry in a good spot where it won’t bleach any unwanted items. I spread mine out on the old towel for about a day.


Once the jacket is dry, you’ll want to wash it to get out the bleach stench.

Picnik collage

Et voila – a whole new piece in your wardrobe. I paired it with my super stripe tee and black denim pants from urban outfitters for a weekend bbq. =)

Other related posts: Dip Dye Clothing DIYDistressed Jeans DIYDIY bleach tie dye


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Taylor -July 20, 2011, 9:11AM

You could do this with anything really! Would look awesome on a pair of jeans or a pair of leggings! ~I wear that shirt all of the time btw! I’m obsessed! It is really great down in the evenings at the beach when it gets a little cooler!

guest -July 20, 2011, 1:08PM

what a beautiful retro romper. Can we buy it at FP?

Ilse -July 21, 2011, 11:20AM

It looks awesome! Somethimes when I bleach my jeans, it goes wrong. Then I have white spots where you don’t want them. Does anyone have tips to controle the bleaching?

fp naomi -July 21, 2011, 3:51PM

Ilse – you can use rubber bands like you would when tie dying a shirt. Then just dip the article of clothing into the bleach while holding the rest of out of it. hope that helps!

mickey -August 1, 2011, 10:28PM

i’m bleaching my jacket as i type this! so excited to see the result :)

Alicia -October 14, 2011, 7:24PM

i love this look! howeevverrr.. ive tried bleaching my jacket a couple of times now and for some reason the color doesnt change at all! (its just a medium blue denim jacket from u.o. btw) i got annoyed and figured there must be something wrong with the bleach im using so i tried to bleach a simple tshirt and it didnt change color either!! is there a specific type of bleach i have to use to do this?!

fp naomi -October 18, 2011, 11:22AM

alicia – I just used normal bleach. You might want to try letting it soak for longer – I left mine in over night!

tay -March 21, 2012, 3:01AM

alicia- you can only bleach/dye natural fibers like cotton or wool or mohair…your jacket may LOOK like cotton denim, but could be some sort of poly or acrylic blend- these are not bleachable/dyeable.

tay -March 21, 2012, 3:20AM

also what the original poster did not include but YOU MUST DO- u must neutralize the bleach after u dye it- dip it in a solution of 9 parts water and 1 part hydrogen peroxide to neutralize the bleach so it does not weaken the fabric, and also so any excess particles does not irritate your skin. this is an IMPORTANT STEP- do it between taking it out of the bleach and washing it in the washing machine!

maruschka -May 1, 2012, 1:58PM

Love it. I will bleache mine tomorrow

Ryley -May 21, 2012, 12:53AM

I bleached my jean jacket and am wondering when it is safe to wash it in the washing machine.

Viviana -June 28, 2012, 7:45PM

Awesome! I’ve been obsessing over this look lately, and what I love about it is that it’so versatile, you can do this with pants, chambray shirts, etc.The possibilities are endless! Have you ever thought about dip-dyeing things in different colors? The R.I.T fabric dyes are great for that and not to mention affordable :)

Here’s my own post about this trend, hope you read and like it! :)

Viviana -June 28, 2012, 7:47PM

Sorry I didnt actually provide the link! lol here it is

May -March 6, 2013, 11:25PM

I’m doing some jean shorts and its going perfectly! So excited!

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