The term Raw refers to any denim that has not undergone a factory wash after the dying process. This should not be confused with Selvedge Denim, as any denim fabric can be raw, but only denim that has been woven in a particular way can be selvedge.
Raw is denim in its purest form and is the term used to describe dark denim that has skipped the factory-washing process. The beauty of raw denim is the ‘breaking in process’, which creates a jean completely unique to you, depending on your daily lifestyle.
It is ideal for those seeking a customized look, as the fading process is natural and authentic. By leaving the fabric in its original state, it is ultimately the wearer that determines the characteristics of their jeans.
However it is not for everyone, as it requires time, care and patience to have the satisfying end result. You should take in to consideration that because it is un-washed, there is still excessive indigo dye in the fabric, making it prone to rubbing off onto clothing and upholstery. You must also refrain from washing your jeans for at least 6 months, as this will disrupt the natural fading process.
The appeal of having your jeans gradually fade creating natural markings on their own is what makes owning a pair of raw jeans so desirable. When you first try on your raw jeans, they will feel stiffer compared to regular factory washed jeans, but after just a few wears, your jeans will soften considerably.
Each crease and fade is individual to the person wearing it. The amount of time you spend in your jeans and your lifestyle all contribute to how your jeans will look. No two pairs of raw denim will ever look the same. Your raw denim is completely unique to you.