Levi Strauss CEO: Conserve water and stop washing your jeans

Chip Bergh still hasn't washed his jeans and he hasn't gotten a "skin disease or anything else."
By Evan Bleier   |   May 22, 2014 at 8:21 AM   |   Comments

LAGUNA NIGUEL, Calif., May 22 (UPI) -- During a recent talk at Fortune's Brainstorm Green conference, Levi Strauss CEO Chip Bergh recommended that customers stop washing their jeans in order to conserve water.

At the time, Bergh was wearing a pair of dark blue jeans that hadn't been washed in at least a year but looked none the worse for wear.

"These jeans have yet to see a washing machine," Berth said. "I know that sounds totally disgusting. I know it does but believe me it can be done. You can spot clean it, you can air dry it, and it's fine. I am yet to get a skin disease or anything else, it works."

Instead of putting jeans in the washing machine, Bergh recommended "spot cleaning" with a "sponge or toothbrush" or freezing them to kill bacteria.

He also mentioned that "real denim aficionados" claim that blue jeans should never be washed at all.

Bergh probably knows a thing or two about sustainability, as he was delivering his remarks on May 20, the 141st birthday of Levi's 501 jeans. "We are the ultimate in sustainable apparel," Bergh said. "If you buy [our jeans] they will last a lot longer than most people's waistlines will."

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