Crotch blowouts are inevitable as pretty much any well worn pair of denim will be beset at some point. Though for many this is just a part of the process that can be dealt with by the owner him or herself or a professional, it’s also forced numerous denim wearers to ask why it’s such a ubiquitous and unavoidable issue, and how it can be prevented.
Simply put, crotch blowouts happen since this area of the jeans endure the most amount tension during day-to-day life. The crotch area has to deal with an immense amount of abrasion as a result of much stretching and pulling through normal and everyday activities – i.e. when you walk, when you sit, etc.
There are, however, several other factors that also expedite blowouts:
- Buying your denim (too) tight: Though raw denim will allow for stretch over a period of time, it’s an uncompromising material that does have have its limits. Thus, if you’re buying a pair that is too tight, the tension on the crotch area is stronger, and the chance of a blowout is heightened. Thus, it should come as no surprise that we see a connection between slim fitting jeans and crotch rips and tears.
- Sagging (AKA lowriding) denim: Denim worn very low causes more stress to the crotch area while moving around; resulting in a higher likelihood of blowouts
- Cycling: Not to point the finger at any specific culprit, but cycling is a real crotch cracker. Up and down movements are made so quickly with your legs, that every time you peddle, a very concentrated amount of friction is created in the crotch area.
- Not washing your denim: While there is no hardset rule here, washing raw denim is often considered a cardinal sin that will surely destroy any chance of deep contrast fades (if done too soon). However, the caveat of avoiding a good wash is that it traps any grime, dust, and dirt between denim threads; exponentially loosening the fibers and leading to higher tension. Denim is tough, but when unwashed and worn over a long period of time, it literally become weaker and makes the crotch more susceptible to blowouts.
From the previous list you may be feeling that crotch blowouts are undeniable reality, but there are a several actions that can be taken to slow their occurrence; including:
- Early Detection - In an earlier article, we gave a few tips on how to detect a blowout in its infancy and what to do about it. Darning thinned areas and fixing loose threads on time is an excellent way to add months (and years) to the crotch.
- Looser Fitting Denim - If your denim is roomier, the crotch area will endure less stress and will therefore have a longer life.
- Washing Denim More Regularly - Washing your denim every few months will keep the fibers strong and clean. This will also help avoid the occurrence of blowouts and contrary to the belief of most, this will have minimal negative effects on your fades.
- Cycling Less – You may sacrifice deeper contrast fades, but you will gain a longer life for your denim. Or if you’re looking for a specific pair of raw denim catered to riding your two-wheeled steed, check out our earlier article outlining a few options.
- Reinforcing Your Crotch - Proposing a different strategy, some brands offer a simple built-in crotch reinforcement to help prevent or delay the blowout. The new ByBeatle - Volume One is one option, as well is the Self Edge x Sugar Cane – SEXSC06.
As mentioned, many consider crotch blowouts to just be a part of the process and an insignificant issue. However, by understanding why they happen and arming yourself with some of the tips above, you’re sure to inhibit this denim headache.