How to Wash Newborn Baby Clothes

Just because your baby’s clothes are new does not necessarily mean that they are clean. In fact, manufacturers often add chemicals to clothing that prevent wrinkling and mold growth. Unfortunately, these chemicals can cause your newborn baby’s skin to become red and irritated. Washing your newborn baby’s clothing before use can help keep her comfortable and rash-free. Newly manufactured clothing may also contain excess dyes that can rub off on your baby’s skin. Washing prior to wear reduces this risk.

Separate your newborn baby’s clothes according to color. For instance, group white clothes together, pastels in a separate pile and darks in another. Separating your newborn baby’s clothes prior to washing will protect white and pastel clothing from stains caused by dark dyes.

Wash each of the piles of newborn baby clothing individually in a detergent specifically designed for use on baby clothing. Unlike regular detergents, baby detergents do not contain heavy fragrances that commonly cause rashes and skin irritations.

Run your newborn baby’s clothing through the rinse cycle twice. Running them through a second rinse cycle will help to ensure the removal of chemicals, dyes and excess detergents.

Place your baby’s clothes in the dryer or hang them on a clothesline to dry after washing. If you must use fabric softener, use one designed for baby clothes.

Fold the clothes after washing to prevent wrinkles. Store the freshly washed baby clothing in a clean drawer or cabinet to keep them clean and free of dust and debris.


Wash your newborn baby’s clothing before the delivery. Even if you do not get to all of the clothes, have enough laundered clothing on hand for leaving the hospital and the first few days at home.


Do not add bleach to your baby’s whites. Bleach can irritate your baby’s tender skin.