When you become a parent, many changes in your life, lifestyle, budgets, food habits, travel plans and everything related to day-to-day life also come along. Making choices becomes an integral part of your daily life. One such decision you need to make is whether to go for disposable or cloth diapers for the diapering journey of your baby.
Cloth diapering is a great eco-friendly way to save money, reduce waste, and keep your baby’s skin healthy and rash-free. But to get the most out of your baby’s cloth diapers, knowing how to wash and care for them is crucial. With the proper cleaning routine, you can keep your cloth diapers in excellent condition for years. This article by Care for Child will help you understand the wash & care routine of cloth diapers that will ensure not just the long life of the diapers but also avoid problems such as odour and staining in diapers, rashes due to detergent build-up etc. Read On!
How To Prep a New Cloth Diaper Before First Use?
Before you use your new SuperBottomss cloth diapers for the first time, it is crucial to prep it properly. When a diaper arrives from a warehouse and passes through all the packing & courier processes, it is a bundle of germs and chemicals. Thus, prepping the diaper is an important step. This involves washing the diaper properly before use to remove any manufacturing residue and improve its absorbency.
First, run the diaper through a hot wash cycle with a small amount of detergent, then dry it on high heat. You may want to repeat this process a few more times, especially for the inserts & pads, until they reach maximum absorbency. Once prepped, your new cloth diaper will be ready to use and provide your baby with comfortable, leak-free protection.
Importance of Choosing the Right Detergent for Cloth Diapers
Choosing the suitable detergent for cloth diapering is crucial to ensure that your washable cloth diapers stay in good condition and provide optimal absorbency. Unfortunately, many commercial detergents contain additives and fragrances that can build up on cloth diapers and cause them to repel moisture. This can lead to leaks and make your cloth diapers less effective over time.
When selecting a detergent for cloth diapering, looking for a product free of fragrances, dyes, and fabric softeners is essential. These additives can irritate your baby’s skin and reduce the effectiveness of the diaper. Additionally, it is necessary to choose a detergent specifically designed to work well with cloth diapers. Some detergents contain enzymes that can break down the natural fibres of the diaper, leading to premature wear and tear.
How To Strip Cloth Diapers to Remove Detergent Build-up
Over a few months of using cloth diapers, they can develop build-up from detergent, hard water, or other substances that can reduce their absorbency and cause them to repel moisture. When this phase comes, it is essential to strip the diapers to remove the build-up and restore their effectiveness. This section will discuss how to wash cloth diapers to strip the build-up. Here is how to do it:
- Start by washing your cloth diapers as usual without any detergent. Use hot water and run them through an entire wash cycle.
- After the wash cycle is complete, run another hot wash cycle with a small amount of detergent and a cup of white vinegar. The vinegar will help break down any build-up on the diapers.
- Once the second wash cycle is complete, rinse the diapers thoroughly with hot water to ensure that all detergent and vinegar have been removed.
- If your cloth diapers still have build-up or odour, you can repeat the stripping process as needed until they are clean and fresh.
It is important to note that how to wash newborn cloth diapers is a different process from the process of stripping. Stripping cloth diapers should only be done as needed, as it can be harsh on the fabric and reduce the lifespan of the diapers. Also, to prevent build-up from occurring in the first place, be sure to use the recommended amount of detergent for cloth diapering and avoid using fabric softeners or other additives that can cause build-up.
How to Dry Cloth Diapers? Dos & Don’ts
When it comes to drying cloth diapers, there are two main options: air-drying and machine-drying. Here is what you need to know about each method:
Air-drying: Air-drying is the gentlest option for drying cloth diapers, as it minimizes wear and tear on the fabric. To air-dry cloth diapers, hang them on a clothesline or drying rack in a well-ventilated area. Avoid direct sunlight, as this can cause fading and damage to the fabric. Air-drying can take longer than machine-drying, so planning is essential as allowing enough time for your diapers to dry completely.
Machine-drying: Machine-drying is a faster option for drying cloth diapers, but it can be harsh on the fabric and reduce the lifespan of your diapers over time. If you machine-dry your cloth diapers, use a low or medium heat setting and avoid over-drying them. Over-drying can cause the fabric to become brittle and reduce absorbency. Avoiding fabric softeners or dryer sheets is also important, as these can coat the material and reduce absorbency.
Ultimately, the choice between air-drying and machine-drying comes down to personal preference and lifestyle. If you have the time and space for air-drying, it can be a great way to extend the lifespan of your cloth diapers. On the other hand, if you need to dry your diapers quickly, machine-drying can be a convenient option, but take extra care to avoid over-drying or using fabric softeners.
As a new parent, you must make many choices, including using disposable or cloth diapers for your baby. Cloth diapering is a great eco-friendly way to save money, reduce waste, and keep your baby’s skin healthy and rash-free. However, knowing how to wash and care for cloth diapers is crucial to get the most out of them. This article has covered everything from prepping new cloth diapers to choosing the suitable detergent, stripping cloth diapers, and drying them properly. If you diligently follow these tips and tricks, you can keep your cloth diapers in excellent condition for years, providing your baby with comfortable, leak-free protection while reducing environmental impact.