How do I wash nappies?

Washing nappies is really very simple.

You store dirty nappies in the pail, separating any washable boosters, inserts or liners and closing the Velcro tabs over on themselves, and when ready put them in the washer on a 40˚ wash with half the recommended dose of detergent, give them an extra rinse and air dry.

While there is no one routine that will suit everyone due to variables such as soiling level, machine type, load size, water hardness and cycle used, the above is a good place to start and you can tweak if needed.

A few tips...

We advise dry pailing your nappies. There is no need to soak nappies as modern washers and detergents are very effective.

Soiled nappies should be washed regularly. Do not leave soiled nappies for longer than three days.

Wash poopy nappies separately from your household laundry. If the nappies are just wet (wee is sterile) then they can be washed with other laundry.

Check the Velcro tabs are closed tightly on the nappies. Once the wrap Velcro tabs are closed, turn the wraps inside-out. Boosters and inserts are best removed from pocket nappies prior to washing.

We advise washing at 40˚. All our nappies can be washed at 60˚ when necessary such as if baby gets nappy rash or thrush, but the hotter the regular wash the shorter the lifespan.

The above is all most parents need to know but for the few parents who need it we've included the sum of our (and the Nappy Science Gang) knowledge. Trust us - washing nappies really is easy once you've found the routine that works for you it isn't daunting.

In our opinion powder detergents dissolve quicker and rinse better leading to cleaner laundry. 

Bio or non-bio? Biological detergent is better at stain removal than non-bio, particularly on protein based stains such as poop. We are not fans of Eco Eggs or soap nuts as we are not convinced they are effective for a nappy laundry.

Dosage? We advise starting with half the recommended dose of detergent for the load size and water hardness and working up from there. The amount of detergent needed will vary and is dependant on load size, machine type and water hardness. Soft water needs less detergent to be effective and hard water needs more - possibly up to a full recommended dose. Detergent build up can cause issues - especially if your washing machine has a weak rinse program - so overdosing is not advised.

Fabric softener? Do not use fabric softener in your nappy wash as it will coat the fibres and inhibit absorption.

Sanitisers? We do not recommend using sanitisers with your nappy wash. Sanitisers will affect the elastic and Velcro components and shorten the life of your nappies. Besides, sanitisers aren't necessary as most detergents have a small amount of sodium percarbonate in them - which is the main ingredient of sanitizers. Our elastics can cope with the 5-15% sodium percarbonate that is in most brands of detergent. 

Washing cycle? To wash nappies you need a full cycle, not an eco-wash or short wash. An eco-wash will use less water, be shorter and agitate less and nappies need a good amount of water, time and shaking to clean effectively.

Rinsing? Ensure your nappies are well rinsed. Detergent residue can be the root of problems. If you live in a soft water area always do an extra rinse. A cold water rinse is better if you have that facility.

Spin? The faster and longer the nappies are spun the quicker they will dry. Eco and shorter cycles usually have a slower spin speed and time meaning there is excess water left in the fabric making them slow to dry.

Drying? Drying nappies in direct sunshine is best as it naturally bleaches the fabric of any poo stains. Placing them by, but not touching, a heat source is effective but do not place them directly on radiators as they may scorch. Try to avoid the tumble drier where possible as the fluff you clean out of the filter has to come from somewhere! If you do use a tumble dryer make sure it's on the low heat setting. Do not stretch the elastic when it is still warm from the drier.

Wraps, pockets and OneSize nappies air dry very quickly after shaking off any surface water. Do not tumble dry these items as it will affect the laminate and make them less effective.

Help and advice. Email or phone us if you need any help tweaking your wash routine or if you are unsure of anything. 

If you have a good wash routine you will have no issues at all.


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