When you become a parent for the first time, experiences aren’t only new for your newborn, but for you as well. This means that you’re constantly learning the best things to do for your little one – from incorporating sleeping and eating times, to figuring out what their nursery needs, to learning how to wash their clothing. Doing research on these topics is what gives you the confidence that your baby will be safe and protected in your care.
So when it comes to your little one’s cute little onesies and socks, if you’d like a few tips on how to launder those items, we have five recommendations for you below:
Use a very gentle detergent. A lot of people have sensitive skin; however, no one’s is as sensitive as a newborn boy or girl. That’s why it’s important to wash their clothing in a very gentle detergent. Preferably, it should be one that is hypoallergenic and fragrance-free. A very popular commercial brand is Dreft. Or you can go to websites like Daily Mom or The Humble Homemaker to get some homemade detergent recipes. Just go to the sites and put “homemade detergent” or “homemade baby detergent” in the search field.
Pre-wash all baby gifts. Between baby showers and the birth of your child, you’re going to get plenty of gifts. Even if they are in unopened or plastic packaging, it’s still a good idea to pre-wash them before putting them on your little one. That way, you can be sure that you’ve gotten rid of any dirt, germs or packaging residue that may be lingering on the fabric.
Don’t use softener. Although fabric softeners do make clothes feel softer, they also tend to have a lot of chemicals in them. Plus, there are studies which indicate that they can make baby clothing less flame-retardant over time. So rather than using fabric softener, add 1½ cups of white vinegar to the rinse cycle. You’ll get similar results without the vinegar smell.
Do a bit of spot cleaning. One thing that you can bet on is your newborn getting stains on their clothing. And if you were to speak with someone who works for a company like Laundry Equipment Services about what you should do about baby clothes that have spots, they would probably tell you to do some spot cleaning. Using a standard baby wipe on a stain should do the trick. Just apply it to the stain and then drop it in the wash immediately following.
Wash baby things separately. Although there are a lot of people who wash their children’s clothing along with their own, until your baby is a bit older and their immune system is stronger (for instance, once they are a few months old), it really is best to wash their things separately from your own. In fact, if you have really small loads, consider washing them by hand. And when it’s time to dry them, also keep in mind that sometimes babies’ clothing takes a bit longer because they are made out of a thicker fabric. So first fluff out the clothes before putting them in the dryer and then prepare for the process to take 15-20 more minutes. For tips on how to care for your baby’s clothes, visit BHG and put “care for baby clothing” in the search field.