How to Wash Baby Clothes


You’ve finally brought your new baby into the world. You’re on an impossible mission to not let their pristine skin touch a single thing on the way out of the hospital. There’s a solid no snuggling before the sanitizer rule is in place. And those onesies? The softest organic cotton. 

But for all your efforts to keep your baby in a bubble, there is one part of your new parenthood routine you may have overlooked; the washing of the 2 to 3 onesies, swaddle, burp rag, bespoke knitted blanket, and several tiny socks that will dependably fall off their sweet feet every day. Choosing the right gentle detergent and learning how to wash all those deliciously tiny outfits properly to keep them in the game is a must-learn parent skill. 

Here is everything you need to know about mastering the art of baby laundry.

How To Wash Baby Clothes

Why Use a Natural Laundry Detergent

Laundry day is an inevitable chore in every household that has a baby in it. They are fantastically good about demanding dramatic outfit changes. But have you ever stopped to wonder what exactly is in the detergent you're using? 

Traditional laundry detergents are often packed with synthetic chemicals that can irritate your skin, harm the environment and even be toxic to pets and small children. By choosing a laundry detergent with plant-based ingredients, you're not only doing your part for the planet but also protecting your family's health. 

Plant-based laundry detergents tend to be gentler on the skin, eco-friendly, and effective in fighting stains and odors. So the next time you're sorting through the laundry aisle, consider opting for a detergent that not only gets the job done but also contributes to a safer and greener future.

How to Remove Stains from Baby Clothes

As a new parent, it's inevitable that you'll encounter every kind of stain imaginable on your baby's clothes. You might come to a point of exhaustion where just binning that soiled onesie seems like the best solution. 

But don't worry; removing the stains can be easy with the right products and techniques. For breast milk and formula stains, try soaking the garment in cold water before washing it with a gentle detergent. 

For tougher stains like baby food or diaper cream, pre-treat with a stain remover before washing. Always remember to read the care label on the garment before attempting to remove the stain, and avoid using hot water or bleach. 

The best solution is a naturally derived stain stick like the Vegan Stain Remover Bar from Kind Laundry. It’s not only free of toxic chemicals, it's also made using zero animal by-products in our stain remover soap bar, such as tallow (commonly found in soap bars). With a little patience and persistence, those stubborn stains will be a thing of the past!

How to Wash Newborn Baby Clothes

Let’s get down to getting those ruffles back to tip top shape. What no good friend will tell you about until after the fact is the sheer amount of bodily fluids you’ll be dealing with after your baby arrives. 

Even if this isn’t your first time at the rodeo, and especially if you don’t anticipate it being your last, you’ll want to know how to preserve your baby's clothes with good washing techniques so that they can be passed along to fellow parents or preserved in all their unstained greatness to be brought out on embarrassing occasions in teenager-hood. 

Washing your baby's clothes can seem daunting at first. It's important to remember that newborns have delicate skin that requires gentle handling. 

To start, sort the clothes by color and fabric type. This helps to avoid any potential color bleeding or damage to the clothes. 

It's recommended to wash baby clothes separately from adult clothing to minimize the risk of any harmful bacteria coming into contact with your child's clothes.

Choose a mild detergent, free of any strong fragrances or additives. Use a small amount of detergent and place the clothes in the washing machine.

Go gentle 
Set the machine to a gentle cycle and cold water. 

Low heat or air dry 
After the cycle is complete, transfer the clothes to the dryer on low heat or hang them up to air dry. 

With these simple steps, you can ensure that your baby's clothes are gently cleaned and free of remaining toxins from harsh detergents. 

How To Wash Baby Clothes

How to Wash Baby Clothes for The First Time

Welcoming a new baby into the world is an exciting time, and new parents often want to do everything they can to ensure their little one is healthy and happy! As exciting as it is to bring home your new bundle of joy, there are a few important steps to take before dressing them up in their adorable new outfits. There’s a first time for everything, and that includes baby clothes. 

We hate to disappoint if you’re one who enjoys that “new clothes smell,” but for babies especially, clothing should be washed before the first wear. 

Why? For starters, countless people may have handled the clothes before reaching the store shelves, exposing them to germs and bacteria. Additionally, they may have been treated with chemicals during the manufacturing process that could be harmful to your baby's delicate skin (evidenced in that new clothes smell). 

Washing their clothing before use ensures that any harmful substances are removed and that the clothes are thoroughly sanitized. It's a simple step that can provide peace of mind for parents and a comfortable, clean start for your little one.

To wash baby clothes for the first time: 

  1. Sort and separate. The first step is to sort your clothes by color, separating the whites, darks, and bright colors. Don’t wash with other household goods or clothing to avoid potential cross contamination. 

  2. All natural detergent. Use a mild all natural detergent to ensure that no lingering chemicals come in contact with your baby’s skin. 

  3. Go gentle. Wash the clothes in cold or warm water on a gentle cycle. 

  4. Skip the add ons. Don't forget to avoid using fabric softeners and bleach. These are absolute no-go’s for a new baby, to avoid them coming into contact with artificial fragrances and chemicals that can irritate their skin. 

  5. Rinse twice. This ensures that no detergent residue is left behind. 

  6. Hang dry. Hang your baby's clothes to dry and avoid using the dryer, which can damage their delicate fabrics. 

Sanitize the washer. Wait, we need to clean the thing that cleans things? Absolutely! You should sanitize your washer regularly by running an empty load with hot water and vinegar to take care of lingering bacteria, mold, germs, and the odors that come with them.  

How to Wash Baby Clothes in Washing Machine

Fewer things will mean more to you than your actual new baby than some of the appliances that help make parenthood go smoothly. A white noise machine. That automatic bottle cleaner. Your coffee maker. And above all, your washing machine. Let’s break down the ins and outs of your new best friend.

Choosing The Right Detergent

When you bring a baby into the world, one thing is almost certain. You’ll start reading labels a lot more closely. From baby food to laundry detergent, it’s all about what’s in them, where did it come from, and how does it serve your new perfect mini me. 

When it comes to washing your baby's clothes, choosing the right laundry detergent is crucial. You want something that is effective at removing stains and odors but also gentle enough to avoid irritating your little one's sensitive skin. 

Check the label

Look for detergents marked as "baby" or "sensitive" on the label, as these are typically formulated without harsh chemicals or fragrances. Detergents like Kind Laundry’s Eco-Friendly Laundry Detergent Sheets are made with plant derived ingredients like Tea Seed Oil, making them a much gentler and safer alternative to synthetic, chemical-based detergents.

Skip the fabric softener

It's also a good idea to avoid fabric softeners unless they are plant derived. Kind Laundry uses a coconut oil-derived softener ingredient that is perfectly safe compared to the harsher synthetic based alternatives, which can leave residue on clothes that can irritate your baby's skin.

Choose a liquid or sheet

This seems like a small detail, but it’s a big one when it comes to baby clothing. Choose a liquid or sheet detergent. Powder detergents tend not to wash out as fully and can leave residue and irritants behind. 

Follow clothing label instructions

Remember to always follow the instructions on the label and test a small spot before washing all of your baby's clothes with a new detergent. These instructions aren't just there for decorative purposes-- they are meant to ensure that the clothes are washed in a way that protects their delicate fabrics and sensitive skin. 

By following these instructions, we can help prolong the lifespan of our baby's clothes, keeping them soft and comfortable for longer. Plus, it can also prevent potential damage or even shrinking, which is a nightmare for most parents. 

With a little research and careful consideration, you can find the perfect laundry detergent for your baby's precious clothing.

How Much Laundry Detergent to Use

Contrary to common belief, less is not more in this scenario. When it comes to washing baby clothes, it's important to use the right amount of detergent to keep your little one's delicate skin free from irritation. 

But how much is too much? The answer may surprise you! 

While you might be tempted to use more detergent for a deeper clean, using too much can actually harm your baby's skin and clothes, leaving them stiff and scratchy. To avoid this, start with the smallest recommended amount of detergent and adjust as needed based on the size of the load and how soiled the items are. For a Kind Laundry Sheet, you’ll only need one per load! 

With just the right amount of detergent, your baby's clothes will come out clean and soft, ready for your little one to wear again and again.

Best Setting on Washing Machine for Baby Clothes 

Washing your little one's clothes for the first time can be stressful, especially if you're not sure which setting to choose on your washing machine. 

Thankfully, there's an easy solution. The best setting for baby clothes is the delicate cycle. This will ensure that your baby's clothes are washed gently and without too much agitation. 

It's also a good idea to rinse twice to ensure that residues are removed. In addition, stick to a low heat cycle on the dryer or air dry to avoid damaging the material. Baby clothes will be washed more than most of your household laundry, and it’s a marathon, not a sprint, to keep them in good shape. 

By using the delicate cycle and choosing the right detergent, you'll be able to wash your baby's clothes with confidence, knowing that they'll come out clean, soft, and safe for your little one to wear.

What Temperature Should I Wash My Baby Clothes

As a new parent, there are several questions that go through your head, and one of those is undoubtedly what temperature to wash your baby's clothes. 

While it may seem daunting to figure out what temperature is best, it's important to know that you don't need to worry too much about getting it perfect. 

Most baby clothes can be washed at a standard temperature of 40°C (104°F), which should remove any dirt or stains without causing damage. However, if your baby has sensitive skin or you prefer to wash at a higher temperature, 60°C (140°F) is also a safe option. The most important thing to keep in mind is to use a mild and fragrance-free detergent to avoid triggering any irritation or allergies.

How To Wash Baby Clothes

Should I Pre-Wash Baby Clothes

One of the most exciting times for many parents is getting ready for the arrival of a new baby. With the purchase of cribs, changing tables, and loads of cute baby clothes, it's easy to get swept up in all the preparation. Those tiny dresses and pants look so sweet with their tags still on. 

However, when it comes to washing baby clothes, many parents might wonder if it's necessary to pre-wash them. The truth is, before that cute onesie arrived in that delicate gift bag, swaddled in tissue paper, it went through a potentially grimy factory and commercial supply chain and was likely handled by more hands than just your sweet Grandma’s. 

Some argue that pre-washing baby clothes can help eliminate any dust, bacteria, and irritants while softening the fabric.

Can I Wash Baby Clothes With Other Clothing?

You’ll quickly learn that the name of the baby game is efficiency! One of the main questions that might come to mind is whether you can wash baby clothes with other clothing. While it’s tempting to throw every piece of laundry together to keep the conveyor belt of fresh onesies flowing, it is not recommended, especially early on.

This is for multiple reasons. One is that your baby’s immune system is newly forming. Washing their delicate clothing that will likely come in contact with sensitive bits and even their mouth with things like cleaning rags or even your gym gear can risk cross contamination. 

Another reason for separation is that your baby's clothes are likely pretty soiled! The early days of babyhood often bring accidents. You also don’t want to risk cross contamination the other way. 

Finally, you’ll want to use a mild detergent for your baby's clothes. This might not suit the needs of your other laundry. 

However, while some parents choose to wash their baby's clothes separately, others find it more practical to combine them with their family's laundry. So, whether you choose to separate or combine your laundry, just be sure to read the care labels of all the clothes before washing to ensure the best care for your precious little one. 

How to Hand Wash Baby Clothes

If you find hand washing as a sort of “parent meditation,” well you might be one of the few! Parents hand wash for a few reasons. One is that you may simply not have access to a traditional washer. Another is that you want to preserve the delicacy of your baby’s clothing. 

So how should you go about hand washing baby clothes?

Fill it up. The first step is to fill a sink or basin with warm water.

Keep it mild. Add a small amount of baby-safe detergent. 

Swish. Gently submerge the clothing and swish it around for a few minutes. Rinse the clothing with clean water until all soap suds are gone. 

Squeeze. Squeeze out any excess water.

Hang. Use clothes pins and a line or a rack to hang the baby clothing to dry.

Taking the time to carefully wash your baby's clothing will not only keep them clean but also soft and gentle on their sensitive skin. Learning how to properly hand wash your baby's clothing can save you time and money in the long run.

How To Wash Baby Clothes 

How Often to Wash Baby Clothes

From spit-up to diaper explosions, babies sure know how to make a mess! As a new parent, you might find yourself changing your little one's outfit more often than you change your own. 

It seems like every time you turn around; there's another stain on their onesie that just won't come out. And don't forget about the outfit they need for their outdoor adventures - because, let's face it, even the most careful baby will find a way to get dirty outside. So, stock up on extra onesies and prepare for lots of laundry, because, with babies, a few outfit changes throughout the day are just par for the course.

How often are most parents washing baby clothing? 

As a general rule, baby clothing should be washed immediately after you buy or receive it. Then once a week for infrequently worn items and every other day for more frequently worn pieces of clothing. But let’s be honest, most baby clothing is not staying clean and dry for more than a day or so!  

How to Dry Baby Clothes

Drying baby clothes can be a tedious task, but it's necessary to ensure your little one's delicate skin doesn't get irritated. If you don’t hang dry, than be sure to follow this guide to ensure that your baby’s clothing is getting the gentle treatment. 

Wash gently. First, be sure to wash the clothes with a gentle detergent.

Low heat. Choose a low heat setting on your dryer. 

Alternatively, dry outside. If you don't have a dryer, hanging clothes on a clothesline outside on a sunny day is an excellent option. 

Use a drying rack. On the other hand, if you prefer to hang clothes inside, make sure to use a drying rack or hanger so clothes don't lose their shape. 

Avoid fabric softeners. It's also important to avoid using fabric softeners or dryer sheets as they can cause irritation and harmful fumes.

Folding vs. Hanging

To fold or hang that is the question. The truth is…even for those who hang, you’re going to end up folding. The odds that your baby is going to reject a certain piece of clothing, especially when they get older and more disagreeable with certain textures, colors, and fits, are high. And at that point, a heap will form of the rejected outfits. You’ll promise yourself that you’ll take time to rehang them. But then Monday blurs into Sunday again. 

Folding baby clothes has its advantages, as it saves space and keeps clothes wrinkle-free. It’s perfect for a stacking organization system. 

Or perhaps you are an A-type mom or dad who can’t sleep until everything is back in it’s place! In that case, hanging has its benefits! Everything dangles before you in sections separated for season and size. This is an ultra organized way to assess the full inventory of your baby’s wardrobe. 

And as far as the care of the clothing itself? Hanging baby clothes can make outfits easy to identify and access quickly, and it can prevent tangles and creases in delicate fabrics.

Ultimately, it's up to personal preference and what works best for your family's lifestyle and storage options. Whether you choose to fold or hang, just remember that your little one's clothes will soon be outgrown, and you'll be faced with new decisions before you know it.

How To Wash Baby Clothes 

Safety Tips for Washing Baby Clothes

When it comes to washing your little one's clothes, safety always comes first. You’ve gotten this far, you don’t want to mess it up with a bad washing routine! 

Go gentle

You’ll want to make sure that the detergent and fabric softener you use are gentle and non-irritating to your baby's sensitive skin. To avoid any skin reactions or allergies, it's best to opt for fragrance-free and hypoallergenic products. 


Additionally, it's important to separate your baby's clothes from the rest of your laundry to prevent cross-contamination with any harmful chemicals or bacteria. 

Use a natural disinfectant

To make things even safer, you can also consider using a natural laundry disinfectant, like a quarter cup of vinegar, to kill any germs that may be lingering on your baby's clothes. 

Wash before handling

And lastly, always wash your hands before and after handling the laundry to avoid spreading any germs or bacteria onto your baby's skin.  


Let’s face it, even with the added laundry routine, babies are worth every load. Their clothing needs to be taken care of in the right way in order to protect them from any potential harm. 

Making sure that you follow best practices when it comes to washing and drying your baby's clothes will ensure that your child is healthy and safe. While it may take a bit more work, this extra effort will pay off tremendously for both you and your baby. 

Also, taking into consideration the environment that we hope to raise them within for years to come, by using mild plant derived detergent for cleaning baby clothing, we can ensure that not only are our babies safe, but we are helping protect the planet as well! 

If you're looking for an easy fix to help you take better care of your baby products during laundering, look no further - Kind Laundry can do just that!

Check out all the products from Vegan Stain Removers to Wool Laundry Balls in our Laundry Makeover Kit! 

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Our popular travel pack allows you to test out Kind Laundry for a few spin cycles before committing to a larger box.