My Cloth Diaper Wash Routine

Cloth Diaper Blog Hop 2013

Alright, many folks vary this part of diapering. Many dread it, too. Here's what we do in our house:

Notable - We have a gnarly diaper pail. (It's a re-used, upcycled Tidy Cats yellow bucket with lid, lined with a Thirsties hanging diaper pail bag.)

Step One: So, we put the soiled diapers in there. When they are 'pee' diapers, I just rinse the inserts (saturate, wring, saturate, wring - until clear of pee) then put the shell + insert in the bucket -- we also rinse our fitteds/AI2s thoroughly. I sometimes rinse shells too, depending on time I have to tend to it at the moment. For 'poo' diapers, I have a diaper sprayer (BumGenius) attached to the toilet and get rid of as much solids as I can.
  • Circumstantial step 1.2 - If we have a substantial mess in the toilet/everything around it, from  a stubborn poo problem, I end up cleaning the toilet quickly too.

Step Two: We wash our diapers every other day if possible, but never let more than THREE days go in between washing, since you'll likely regret it at the toddler stage in particular, when poo can set in during that time frame. This will reduce your resale and your overall happiness when you look at your stash, so it's worth it to just buck up and do it more often.

Step Three: Cold rinse, just water. Sometimes I will do a short cold soak too, to loosen poo left on the dipes.

Step Four: Wash. I do a WARM wash with about 1/2 scoop of A Happy Green Life laundry wash.  Because I am usually forgetful, I end up repeating this step. (I inevitably leave it sit over night or just want to give it a good washing because of the amount of poo diapers, etc.)

Step Five: RINSE! I usually do a double or triple rinse. It's the most important step in my mind, since the diaper will be sitting next to my boy's skin in this condition, so I don't want detergent or pee left in the fibers.

Step Six: Separate! I only dry inserts and fitteds. My PUL shells go on an indoor drying rack during winter and inclement weather and when it's nicer outside, they go on the line to sun.

Step Seven: Put together diapers and fold as necessary. Put away stash for use!

**For Wool: I use CJ's Wool Rejuvenator and Wool Wash. I only do this about once each month. I hand wash in the sink and ALWAYS hang to dry.

**For Stripping: I use RLR Laundry Treatment. I use it on cloth diapers and really stinky items like my husbands soiled work clothes. DO NOT use it on PUL - it may deteriorate its' properties.


  1. Interesting.... though I don't use clothe, I have wondered how they are washed and how time consuming it is. This doesn't sound bad at all. If we have a third, i'd like to try clothe. I wanted to and wished a had with Chloe bit when she came along it was utter chaos in our home and well life was crazy lol thanks for info :)

  2. I also wash on warm and haven't had any issues with it. I used to do hot but decided to switch to save a little energy

  3. I'm hoping to get a drying rack very shortly so I can start air drying my PUL like you. Hopefully it will lengthen the lifespan.