Caring for your Baby Bare cloth nappies is similar to caring for many others on the market: most rules for washing your cloth nappies are universal.
Below is a guide to what we recommend you do – with a few rules of what not to do. Over time you will develop your own way and work out what works for your child.
We recommend washing nappies at least once before the first use. This is because washing nappies has an effect on their absorbency. Firstly, during manufacturing fabrics are coated in different residues, these residues will prevent your fabrics from absorbing as intended until they are removed. Secondly, the washing of fabrics such as hemp, bamboo and cotton breaks up some of the fibres increasing the surface area of the absorbent materials. This means your nappies will hold more and absorb faster. With this is mind please condiser:
- That the more you wash your nappies the more absorbent they will be.
- During the first few washes you may need to change nappies more often.
We recommend placing new nappies in with other washing whilst you conduct these initial washes. There is no need to dry them between washes as it is the process of water, detergent and agitation that will build their absorbency.
What about Covers?
Covers do not require multiple washing. As with any textile you plan to use on your baby we suggest washing prior to using for cleanliness.
Hang your nappies in the sun and wait for them to dry. The dryer can be used on inserts, be aware that excess heat in the dryer will add to the shrinkage of inserts.
- Nappies should be dry pailed in an open container available to light and air flow. Remove any soiling and rinse leftover solids from nappies.
- Pre-Wash your cloth nappies on a cycle of 30-40 (max 60) degrees with detergent. Follow with a full intensive cycle with the recommended amount of a detergent (max 60 degrees). We recommend a good quality detergent (no soap flakes or similar). Eco detergents are not desirable as they are not as efficient at getting nappies clean. Be sure to follow the instructions on your detergent. Use a full dose for your machine and load size. If you find your nappies are not looking or smelling clean you may need to consider adding extra detergent.
- Hang nappies to dry. Avoid using the drier on covers or leaving in direct hot sunlight for extended periods.
- Do not leave nappies longer than 48 hours before completing a full wash on them. Nappies left longer than 48 hours will not be covered under warranty for signs of deterioration. This includes nappies that are pre-washed and left. Nappies that are pre-washed and stored should still be fully washed within 48 hours.
If your nappies do not look clean or develop smells we recommend considering the following:
- changing your detergent in particular if you are using an eco detergent.
- washing on a warm cycle rather then cold.
- using more detergent and ensuring there is enough water being used in the cycle. Many front loaders do not add enough water to the cycle.
- check that your machine is loaded. Nappies require agitation by rubbing against each other to remove soiling. Underloading or overloading of your machine can impact this process.
USING THE DRYER
Depending where you live, or the inevitable wet and cold of winter, you may need to use a dryer for your nappies. Although, we recommend you avoid it where possible as despite the high quality of our products, intense heat on a continuous basis will shorten the life or your nappies.
If you must use the dryer make sure you take the following into account:
- Inserts: inserts can go into the dryer, even on a hotter setting (beware it may lead to excess shrinkage). You may even want to throw your nappies in for ten minutes after a day of drying to make sure they are really as dry as possible or to soften up the bamboo.
- Nappy shells should NOT be placed in the drier. The excess heat and agitation while hot will shorten the life of the elastics.
WHAT CAN I DO TO EXPAND THE LIFE OF MY NAPPIES?
Many parents ask how they can help their nappies last as long as possible. There are a few options to do this:
- Ensure you prewash/wash within a short period of time after use.
- Do not wash them over 60 degrees or put the shells in the dryer.
- Have a larger stash. More nappies shares the wear and tear. Washing them less often will make your stash of nappies last longer as a whole. Consider if you had a t-shirt or pair of pants you washed every second day for two years - that’s 365 times through the wash and thousands of hours sitting in the sun to dry. It would be in a terrible state after 2 years. Reducing the number of washes by 1/3 or 1/2 will mean your nappies will stay looking great for longer and are more likely to last out to toilet training.
- Follow our washing instructions. The wrong process of cleaning the nappies has the potential to drastically reduce the useful life of your nappies. The washing process can add a lot of wear to nappies.
WHAT TO AVOID
- Never use bleach. This will void your warranty.
- Do not soak your cloth nappies.
- Do not use fabric softener. Our nappies will stay lovely and soft without it, and it will make your nappies work less effectively.
ALL OTHER CLOTH PRODUCTS
All other cloth products should be washed at a temperature between 40-60 degrees. A laundry stain remover can be added to your products or wash load to combat any possible stains.
If you ever have any questions regarding the care of your modern cloth nappies, please email us firstname.lastname@example.org