How to wash baby clothes is a really important question, especially with your baby's sensitive skin. As you lay out all of your baby’s clothes bought by you, your friends and your family, you can’t help but think - how can one baby wear all of this? You’d be surprised. Not only do you need to think about where you will store all of these items of clothing, you also need to know the correct way of washing baby clothes to keep them safe.
It’s important that you don’t wash your baby’s clothes like you do your own. Our skin is developed enough to cope with rough materials and chemicals. Your baby on the other hand is still developing every day. You want to ensure you don’t get in the way of their development.
If you wash your baby's clothes incorrectly, it can cause damage to their delicate skin. This can include rashes, dry skin or itchiness. As your baby cannot physically tell you what's wrong, this is the last thing you want to happen to them. Follow our advice below to learn how to wash baby clothes correctly.
How to wash baby clothes - Choosing the correct materials
The best choice for any baby clothing item is organic cotton. This material is incredibly soft and will protect your baby’s skin from harsh elements. It won’t only protect your baby; it also has a variety of environmental benefits. If you’re looking for clothing that will last throughout your baby’s development, organic cotton is perfect. This will help you in the long run by saving you some money.
If you're planning on having more children, organic cotton clothing is great for hand me downs for new children. This is handy for parents who do not want to spend a lot of money on new clothing. Also, using them again ensures that you're getting maximum use out of them.
When learning how to wash baby clothes, a handy tip is to focus on buying a group of similar colours so it’s much easier to wash them all at the same time instead of having to do multiple. For example, if you buy clothing that are all different colours, it's hard to separate when it comes to washing. You'll end up doing more washes than you need to.
Instead, buy collections of clothing with similar colours e.g. blue, white, grey etc... This will make your life much easier when it comes to washing.
Washing baby clothes before wearing
It’s not about just washing baby clothes after they’ve worn them. It’s really important to wash them even before you dress your baby in them. You’re unaware of the journey each item has taken to get to you. Items of clothing pass through warehouses and are touched by multiple different people. To be extra careful, it’s better to wash them thoroughly to remove any dust or harmful irritants.
If you choose not to wash them after purchasing, your baby may experience irritation to their skin. Remember, your baby’s skin is super soft and delicate at this time and the smallest thing can cause displeasure. Take extra steps that you wouldn’t with your own clothing to keep your baby safe.
You don't only need to wash them because of dust, some items of clothing shed a lot of fluff if they are not washed before use. This commonly happen with fleecy clothing and although it is harmless, it can be a little bit annoying when you start finding fluff all over the place. Washing the item will get rid of any fluff that needs to come off and will make your life a little bit easier.
Detergent What one do I choose?
As you stare at the collection of different detergents available to buy, you wonder – how do I know which one is safe for my baby? It’s quite easy to narrow it down. Non-biological detergents are much better for your baby’s skin and are less likely to cause any irritation. Whereas biological detergents include strong chemicals that could lead to discomfort and damage.
Not all babies are the same and yours may have extra sensitive skin. This is where it’s a good idea to move over to a baby-specific detergent. These detergents are specially designed for baby’s in particular and focus on using formula to protect delicate skin and are also great for premature babies clothing. If you struggle to find a detergent specific for your baby, an eco-friendly one is also just as good. These detergents also use milder substances which can reduce the risk of irritation or a reaction.
Take detergent choice seriously, this is what could damage your baby's clothing as well as their skin. If you're still unsure, don't just go for one that you think will be ok, get some more advice from family or friends that have had babies and then go and select on that you know is safe. It's not worth taking a risk on your delicate baby's skin.
It's not only how to wash baby clothes, it also the question of how hot does the water need to be? Depending on the type of stains that you’d like to remove from your baby’s clothing, the temperature can range. For an average wash, we recommend the temperature being set to around 30 – 40 degrees. This will help target any stains that you want to get rid of.
This temperature is great for everyday stains, these can include milk stains. If your baby is a little bit older, this can also be stains from baby food. If your baby's clothes just need a refresh, this temperature is also perfect for that too.
However, if you have heavily stained clothing or your baby is sick, it’s better to use a slightly higher temperature. The increase in heat will help kill any bacteria on the items of clothing to avoid your baby getting sicker. Washing baby clothes on a higher temperature is also essential for soiled items as these can carry a whole load of nasty germs.
Accidents like this can happen quite frequently with a young baby, so you'll probably end up using a higher temperature the majority of the time. However, it's important that you ensure all harmful bacteria is gone before putting your baby in the clothing again.
Keeping your baby clothes soft
No matter what detergent or temperature you use, after washing your baby’s clothing again and again, it will eventually start to become itchier and less soft. How can you avoid this? It’s just one simple addition – fabric conditioner. By using this during every wash, it will ensure that your baby’s clothes are left feeling brand new every time. Not only is this nice and comfortable for your baby, it’s also great to avoid spending more money on new clothing.
It’s always good to check the label on clothing before using fabric conditioner as it may cause damage to some items. For example, some clothing items have a fire resistant layer. Some fabric conditioners can dissolve this layer and can make them harmful for your baby in the case of an emergency.
Don’t overcomplicate it
Whether you’re a new parent or you’ve done it all before, the best thing to do is not overthink how to wash baby clothes too much. You might need a new detergent but everything else stays the same as it has been. Continue separating your lights and darks, reading the labels before washing and keeping more delicate items in a different pile – it’s what you’d do as standard anyway!
Remember, if you ever need anymore help, there are plenty of people that have already done what you're going through. Ask for help from friends and family who are experienced in bringing up children. It's best to talk to people to have done these things before. You are not alone in bringing a baby up and there's always help when you need it.