How to wash reusable diapers?

Washing cloth diapers is one of the most controversial points for those who use modern reusable diapers. It's between the fear of touching the poop and how to avoid the breakouts ūüôā

You already know that here I simplify everything and the washing routine is no exception.. Incidentally, if your washing routine has too many steps, hand washing, more than 1 additive, etc, you are overcomplicating it and wasting your valuable time. 

And whoever tells you the opposite, and that you should make thirty for a line, doesn't catch any of this.

I'm specifically talking about those who think this is like the old days and tell you to leave the diapers to soak... It's a mistake and I can't even handle it anymore! Even today, years later, I continue to struggle with it.

IMPORTANT! Soiled reusable nappies must be kept in a dry, airy place until they are washed. A simple bucket with a large waterproof case is more than enough. In fact, you have to use just the bag or just the bucket. 

The frequency of washing it is also important. During the winter you can wash it every three days and as soon as it starts to get hot, you should start washing it every two days. Why? If you wash for more than 3 days you may need to disinfect and disinfection causes unnecessary wear and tear on diapers.

Why do I insist on washing reusable diapers well?

For three reasons:

  1. So that your baby's skin is not irritated;
  2. So that you don't have problems with smells;
  3. So that you spend your time with your baby and not washing diapers.

There are mothers who are very concerned about washing, disinfection, dirty washing machines, etc. Calm down… if you wash your diapers well, you only need to disinfect them if you want to or if you have a fungus. Your washing machine won't be affected by diapers, diapers are just really dirty clothes. Or do you also throw away your clothes when you get dirty with mud?

Nahhh… what you do is wash your muddy clothes on the very dirty cycle.

The 3 steps to washing modern cloth diapers and leaving them spotless

Remember to prepare your diapers for washing, i.e. remove the poop from the diaper and absorbent pads if you have reusable diapers with pockets. This you do in seconds when you change your baby's diaper or when you take the diapers out of your waterproof carrying bag.

Here are the three steps to washing your cloth diapers and the explanation for each one:

 

1. Rinse + cold spin

This step is essential for remove excess pee and poop from diapers. Do an independent cycle, normally all machines have this cycle and it usually lasts 15-20 minutes. Why not do a prewash cycle? Because the new machines reuse water, that is, you are washing your diapers in dirty water. Why cold? Because this way the poop and pee is released from the fibers of the fabric and prevents stains.

2. Heavily soiled laundry cycle + heavily soiled laundry detergent

It is in this step that your reusable cloth diapers will be washed. Let's go to the important details: 

  • Adjusts the¬†cycle temperature to¬†40¬ļC-60¬ļC.¬†Check the label on your diapers for the brand's recommendation. My recommendation is to wash every 4-6 weeks at 60¬ļC and only in cases of persistent odors to always wash at 60¬ļC. There are babies who pee with a very intense smell and these are special cases. In my experience since 2012, I haven't seen nappies degrade if they are always washed at 60¬ļC. But of course, they are always high quality diapers and made to last longer than a baby if they are well taken care of.¬†¬†The association¬†Clean Cloth Nappies¬†recommends always washing at 60¬ļC and they have also been around for a long time.

  • deer¬†Powder detergent¬†of your preference¬†in quantity for heavily soiled laundry.¬†Did you know you can put¬†powder detergent directly into the drum?¬†Oh yeah! You can't even imagine the difference it makes. All the detergent is used, as it is not lost in the tubes, and at the same time you protect the tubes from becoming clogged. If the detergent drawer is already dirty, I can't imagine how the tubes must look.

You can use liquid detergent and in this case step 3 is mandatory. If you find that your reusable nappies don't wash well (i.e. they smell bad) then switch to washing powder.

  • Play the loop and wait for it to finish.

3. Rinse + cold spin

This last step you can skip from time to time. The objective is remove any excess detergent who stayed in diapers. Of course, if your baby has very sensitive skin, you shouldn't skip it.

 

Where are the additives? What about specific detergents? Hand washes? 

The washing routine for your reusable diapers is just these three steps. Of course there are specific situations like fungi or some families that need to adapt. But they are exceptions to the rule. 

Remember to keep your routine simple. That's the secret.

Back to blog

2 comments

Ol√° Filipa,
Com as musselinas o processo é igual. Desde que a lavagem seja feita como indicamos estará tudo bem. As manchas são normais, basta colocar ao sol uns 20min e vão desaparecer. Se ficar alguma mancha, sai na lavagem seguinte.
Nada de estressar com manchas ūüėÄ
Se tiveres mais alguma d√ļvida podes enviar um email para ajudarmos.

Sonia

Esta rotina de lavagem também é válida para as musselinas (usadas como fralda ou absorvente)? Se for guardada e lavada passados 2 dias as manchas saem?

Filipa

Leave a comment

Please note, comments need to be approved before they are published.

  • Posso usar fraldas reutiliz√°veis na creche?

    Can I use reusable diapers in the daycare?

    Did your diapers make it into daycare? Taking reusable nappies to daycare doesn't have to be complicated. While older children start school every year in September, babies go to day care...

    Can I use reusable diapers in the daycare?

    Did your diapers make it into daycare? Taking reusable nappies to daycare doesn't have to be complicated. While older children start school every year in September, babies go to day care...

  • Como secar fraldas reutiliz√°veis no inverno?

    How to dry reusable diapers in winter?

    Rain, cold and humidity are the worst nightmare for those who use reusable cloth diapers.  This force yourself to hang out your clothes inside the house and makes diapers take a long time to...

    How to dry reusable diapers in winter?

    Rain, cold and humidity are the worst nightmare for those who use reusable cloth diapers.  This force yourself to hang out your clothes inside the house and makes diapers take a long time to...

  • Preciso de uma fralda para a piscina ou para a praia?

    Do I need a diaper for the pool or the beach?

    Why do you need a diaper for the pool or the beach? Can you imagine arriving at a swimming pool or the beach and seeing brown submarines floating? It's to...

    Do I need a diaper for the pool or the beach?

    Why do you need a diaper for the pool or the beach? Can you imagine arriving at a swimming pool or the beach and seeing brown submarines floating? It's to...

1 of 3