How to Sanitize your Cloth Diapers? Here’s How to Wash Them

In this article, we are going to discuss how to sanitize cloth diapers. Also going to share how you can wash these cloth diapers, what are the pros and cons of sanitizing your cloth diapers.

Cloth diapers are a one-time investment. These diapers are reusable. Cloth diapers are one of the best choices for parents. There are many cloth diapers available in the market.

Investing in a good quality product is a wise decision. Good quality cloth diapers are safe and they didn’t cause any allergic reactions or rashes. Go for natural or fewer chemical-containing products.

Washing and sanitizing them is not a big deal. But if you are a new or young mother then it might be difficult for you as you dont know how to sanitize cloth diapers or wash them properly.

But dont worry because we’ve got your back. We will be discussing in detail washing and sanitizing cloth diapers.

So let’s get started,

How to Sanitize Cloth Diapers?

Sanitize Cloth Diapers

Sanitizing cloth diapers is a must. There are a lot of different methods of sanitizing cloth diapers. But we are going to discuss the 3 most used methods of how to sanitize cloth diapers.

Chlorine Bleach:

It is the most common method of sanitizing cloth diapers. Most parents use this method because bleach is easily available in our houses. It is easy to use.

Using chlorine bleach can be dangerous sometimes you need to be very careful when using it.

If you use a lot of bleach it will spoil the fabric of cloth diapers over time which results in less time running. So you might need another one very frequently.

What is Chlorine Bleach?

Chlorine bleach is a disinfectant and cleaner which is commonly used in every household. The bleach we use in our houses is a mixture of water and sodium hypochlorite.

Bleach is a dangerous material if not properly used it can burn your skin and it also affects your eyes. You need to be very careful when working with it because it sometimes removes the color of the fabric also.

Always use in small quantities.

How to Use Chlorine Bleach?

You have to use diluted bleach in order to sanitize cloth diapers. Bleach is a very concentrated material so it can be damaging for your baby’s cloth diaper.

But using it in a correct way results in the best sanitizing possible. Only use chlorine bleach if the cloth diaper is bleach safe. You can use chlorine diapers once or twice a month only for sanitizing the cloth diapers.

Chlorine bleach will not be difficult for you if you follow the given steps exactly;

  • Fill your machine or washing tub with the water it requires.
  • Add the small quantity of chlorine bleach to that water.
  • Put your baby’s cloth diaper in that water and bleach mixture.
  • Let the diapers soak in the mixture for 30-40 minutes maximum.
  • Rinse the cloth diaper with hot water and then wash it with the help of detergent.
  • Again rinse it.

This is how to sanitize cloth diapers with the chlorine bleach method.

Pros of Chlorine Bleach:
  • It is a powerful germs and bacteria killer.
  • Easily available.
  • It is cheap.
Cons of Chlorine Bleach:
  • It’s highly concentrated so you have to be very careful.
  • If you add a lot of bleach it may spoil the color of the fabric.

Hydrogen Peroxide and Borax

Hydrogen Peroxide and Borax

Hydrogen peroxide and borax are considered as the alternative to chlorine bleach. These products are also commonly used in your houses and they are cheap also.

This method is highly effective for sanitizing cloth diapers.

Hydrogen peroxide and borax methods are mostly discussed in every blog related to sanitizing cloth diapers. This method is useful at redding diapers of yeast.

What is Hydrogen Peroxide?

Hydrogen peroxide is a chemical substance in a liquid form. It is a mixture of water and oxygen. It is pale blue in color naturally. But in the market available in clear form.

Hydrogen peroxide gets used in many different products such as hair dyes, toothpaste, mouthwashes, washroom cleaners, laundry stain remover, and much more.

It is commonly used as a disinfectant to kill germs and bacteria. It is not dangerous like bleach it is non-toxic that’s why it is commonly used for household purposes.

Yes, it is nontoxic but still, you have to be careful while using it because if a large amount of hydrogen peroxide falls on your skin it can cause harm.

It is not good for sensitive skin so keep away from children.

How to Use Hydrogen Peroxide?

Hydrogen peroxide comes into use more than chlorine bleach because it is non-toxic, easy to use, affordable, and didn’t cause any harm to your cloth diapers.

Follow these steps to sanitize cloth diapers with hydrogen peroxide properly.

  • Fill your machine or washing tub with the amount of water it requires.
  • If you have a low to medium load then add 1 cup of peroxide and if you have a large load then 2 cups will be enough. You can also add borax at this point if you want.
  • Put your baby’s cloth in that water and hydrogen peroxide mixture.
  • Soak the cloth diaper if needed.
  • Rinse with the help of hot water.

This is how simply you can sanitize cloth diapers using hydrogen peroxide.

Pros of Chlorine Bleach:
  • Affordable and easily available at grocery stores.
  • It is non-toxic.
  • It removes stains properly.
Cons of Chlorine Bleach:
  • If it gets into your eyes it will cause irritation.

Pine Oil Disinfectants:

Pine Oil Disinfectants

You might be thinking about how to sanitize cloth diapers with pine oil disinfects. It might sound weird but pine oil is one of the best disinfectants.

Pine oil removes stains properly from both light and dark colored fabrics. If you are looking for a sanitizing material with fewer or no chemicals then it will be a great choice for you.

What is a Pine Oil Disinfectant?

Pine oil disinfectant is mildly antiseptic and natural essential oil.

It is obtained from stumps, needles, cones, and twigs steam distillation. It is a great cleaning and disinfecting product. Pine oil also gets used in aromatherapies and it is a great calming essential oil.

Pine oil is also used in wood furniture cleaners. It has a very calming and soothing smell. It also kills agents of typhoid, rabies, and Cholera.

It is also a nontoxic substance so it will not create any harm to your skin or eyes.

How to Use Pine Oil Disinfectants?

Using pine oil is really easy. If there is a stain you can also directly pour the pine oil on it. Otherwise following these steps will also help you to understand the perfect way to use it.

  • Pretreat the stain by pouring pine oil on it.
  • Let the oil sit on the fabric for at least 15-20 minutes.
  • Put the cloth diaper in the washing machine or washing tub.
  • Add laundry or special cloth diaper detergent.
  • Rinse it with the help of water.
Pros of Chlorine Bleach:
  • Calming and soothing smell.
  • It is natural and anti-inflammatory.
  • It is safe for fabrics.
Cons of Chlorine Bleach:
  • It is a natural ingredient that is derived from plants so it may cause an allergic reaction in some children.

Grapefruit Seed Extract:

Grapefruit Seed Extract

A grapefruit seed extract is a popular substance to kill or reduce the growth of microorganisms. It is a very effective way to kill all kinds of bacteria.

Most people dont use this method or even they dont know about it but it is one of the best and effective ways to remove yeast infection, stains, and sanitize the diapers.

What is Grapefruit Seed Extract?

It is an essential oil derived from the seed of grapefruit. They are also present in detergents because they kill the bacteria and also reduce the smell. It is also available in the form of essential oil.

How to Use Grapefruit Seed Extract?

If you are using grapefruit seed extract infused detergent then use the normal washing method, you can also let the cloth diaper soak in it for some time and then rinse it off with the water.

If you are using essential oil then take a normal size bottle fill it with water and add 10-12 drops of essential oil to it.

Shake it and spar on the cloth diaper. Let it get absorbed. And then rinse it off. But still, you observe any stain then wash it using a detergent.

Pros of Chlorine Bleach:
  • Its smell is so refreshing.
  • An effective way to kill the bacterias.
  • It is natural so it didn’t cause any allergy or rashes.
Cons of Chlorine Bleach:
  • It didn’t clean stains properly.

Also Read: 10 Best Baby Bibs to Buy In 2021 – Good Housekeeping

Reasons for Sanitizing Cloth Diapers:

Reasons for Sanitizing Cloth Diapers:

There are many reasons for sanitizing cloth diapers. The most common are discussed below.

Used Cloth Diapers:

Cloth diapers are reusable so many people share them with others.

Preloved diapers are cheap also that’s why most people buy pre-loved ones. It’s completely fine to use pre-loved cloth diapers all you need is a good sanitization.

Use a strong sanitization method for the first time because pre-loved things contain bacteria and germs. These bacteria and germs will cause irritation, itchiness, and they also create rashes on the baby’s sensitive skin.

Even if they are completely clean and washed before still you need to do sanitization. Cleaning them with detergent is not enough because detergents dont kill germs 100% so you need sanitization is a must.

If you are sanitizing them for the first time then it is recommended to use chlorine bleach or hydrogen peroxide.

Yeast in Cloth Diapers:

If your baby’s cloth diapers have yeast in then you need to sanitize them properly. Yeast in diapers can cause a bacterial infection which results in itchiness and rashes on your baby’s skin.

It is caused because of naturally occurring yeast or bacteria that are found in our bodies. When this naturally occurring yeast didn’t work properly in the baby’s digestive system it overgrows which results in becoming an infection.

After the treatment of this infection or when the symptoms get disappeared, you have to sanitize the diaper in order to remove and kill all the bacteria and germs.

If you see any kind of redness or rashes around their thigh area first try to use diaper rash cream. If the rash cream is not working it means the redness or rashes are caused by yeast infection.

Stinky Diapers:

Sanitization is a must for stinky diapers. Everyone hates smell so if your baby’s diaper stinks nobody will play with them. Stinky diapers are caused by mineral deposits and ammonia build-ups.

You need chlorine bleach and a water mixture for sanitizing stinky diapers. This sanitizing method will help to remove the bad smell quickly.

It also didn’t allow any more build-up of ammonia.

After sanitization, you have to rinse the diaper with water properly. If you dont rinse the diaper properly the bleach or detergent will stay in the diapers which causes the build-up of ammonia again.

Also Read: 9 Best Baby Snowsuits to Keep Your Little One Warm and Dry

Frequently Asked Questions:

Is Lysol laundry sanitizer safe for cloth diapers?

Yes, Lysol laundry sanitizer is completely safe for sanitizing cloth diapers. It is an American disinfecting and cleaning product brand. Lysol sanitizer is safe for both dark and light fabrics.

It claims to kill 99.9% of bacteria. It is recommended to use their safe and clear option as it is gentle and does not contain any smell or scents.

How often should you sanitize cloth diapers?

You can sanitize cloth diapers once or twice a month. Or if your baby is suffering from any allergic reaction or rashes or yeast infection then you can sanitize the cloth diaper more often.

Can I use laundry sanitizer on cloth diapers?

Yes, you can use laundry sanitizers on cloth diapers but go for the sanitizers that contain fewer scents as smell or deodorants are not good for the sensitive skin of babies.

Lysol is a good brand and their laundry sanitizers are suitable for cloth diapers and these sanitizers are bleach-free also.


Sanitizing is a must you can use the above-mentioned ways to sanitize your little one’s cloth diapers properly.