In preparation for your baby’s arrival, you’ve spent months researching the safest and best products to use. You care about the environment too. That’s why you purchased layette items made with organic cotton and other natural fibers.
Choosing organic baby clothes avoids exposing new skin to harmful toxins like synthetic fertilizers and insecticides. What makes it even better is that eco-friendly textiles are grown using sustainable methods and materials, with low impact on the environment.
If you’re new to organic clothes, you may worry that laundering it will be complicated, with hard-to-find cleaners. But don’t fret, it is a simple and pure process.
A Word About Detergents
Although the Consumer Products Safety Commission (CPSC) regulates laundry detergent, soap and cleaning product manufacturing, they don’t require that detergent labels list all of their ingredients. Consequently, laundry detergents can list all, some, or none of these ingredients. So, in this case, even reading labels won’t necessarily help you protect your family from harmful ingredients.
Studies have shown that there is at least 1 potentially cancerous ingredient in over 1/3 of all fragranced laundry detergents. Ordinary detergent can also contain harmful phosphates, chlorine, petroleum-based surfactants, and other carcinogens.
That’s why you should only trust a biodegradable natural cleanser and disinfectant to clean any clothing. This is especially true for organic baby clothing which can fade or deteriorate under harsh chemicals and bleaches.
Natural cleansers are fragrance and phosphate-free. Many are plant-based, and offer comparable cleansing power to standard detergent when used properly.
Keeping It Clean
Always check the tag on the garment, and follow its instructions for care.
Practice good laundering techniques for the best results. For instance, don’t overload the washer, make sure you sort clothes correctly, and use the appropriate amount of detergent.
Choose the warm setting on your washing machine, and sort like colors together. Organic fibers should never be bleached.
Set your dryer to “Tumble Dry” on the low setting. Dryer balls or tennis balls can aide the process when drying organic blankets.
If necessary, you can run a warm iron over the fabric to remove any wrinkles.
Because organic cotton clothes use eco-friendly dyes, a little extra care - just for the first few washes - can lock in colors and keep them from fading and bleeding. Specifically, do not wash dark and light colors together, and turn patterned clothes inside out. And the very first time you launder, add ¼ cup of vinegar to the final rinse water.
All Organic Cotton Is Not Created Equal
Direct from the banks of the River Nile, Egyptian Cotton is a superior product to ordinary organic cotton. Brushing, or combing is a technique used to smooth away any lint or impurities, and makes the cotton ultra soft, durable, and perfect to lie against precious baby skin.
Proper care will make this wonder fabric last, and keep baby looking (and smelling) fantastic!
Check out this list of the picking the best cleaners, with tips on making your own too.
One of our favorite laundry detergents is Tandi's Naturals!
Have you heard of Soap Nuts? They're particularly great for people with ultra-sensitive skin.