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How to wash newborn baby clothes: for busy parents

Are you a new parent struggling with how to keep baby clothes looking new? This article answers all your baby related laundry questions. 

How can such a tiny person create so much laundry? How have they gone through six bibs in one day? Why have they got broccoli in their hair?

These are just some of the questions that might run through a parent’s head on any given day, along with – how to keep baby clothes looking new? It might seem like an impossible task, but once you know what to wash baby clothes with and how to wash newborn clothes, it quickly becomes part of your routine.

Baby clothes washing machine tips

With your baby’s sensitive skin, it’s important to know how to wash newborn clothes with care. Here are a few tips about how to keep baby clothes looking new with your washing machine:

  • Choose a good laundry detergent – When it comes to washing baby clothes, washing machine cycles are the best way to lift stains and sticky food residue. If you’re wondering what to wash baby clothes with, try a detergent like Sunlight Auto, which cleans and strengthens each individual strand, keeping your newborn’s clothes looking and feeling like new for longer. Sunlight Auto also removes unwanted bobbles and keeps clothes feeling smooth against baby’s skin.
  • Wipe off residue before washing – Whether it’s mashed up carrot or something more unpleasant, rinse off as much of the offending substance as possible before putting the garment in the machine. It will make the cleaning process much faster.
  • Soak stains before washing – Pre-soaking a stained garment is a good way to loosen simple stains like spittle or milk, making them easier to lift and clean in the machine. Treat all stains as soon as possible. The sooner you tackle it, the easier it will be to remove.
  • Odour eliminating stain removers – Baking powder mixed with water creates an odour eliminating paste that also helps to remove stains. Adding white distilled vinegar to a pre-soak or laundry cycle removes odours and brightens white clothing. You’re welcome!

Always read the care tags before laundering, especially when it comes to new items. If you’re unsure, follow the manufacturer’s instructions.

How to store baby clothes

Once you’ve finished the laundry, here’s how to store baby clothes:

  1. Sort clothes by size or type (or both if you’re super organised). You could also sort clothes by season.
  2. Keep swimwear, formal items, dress-up costumes, blankets and hair accessories in a separate place – for example in basket crates or mesh bags.
  3. Use vacuum bags or resealable plastic bags to organise clothes, and label them.
  4. Next up, how to fold baby clothes? The answer – don’t! Roll them instead. You’ll save tons of drawer space.
  5. Are you wondering how to store baby clothes in the attic? Steer clear of cardboard boxes and use plastic tubs instead, which provide better protection from moisture and creepy crawlies.  
  6. Finally – know when to throw something away. Permanently stained or overly worn clothes aren’t worth keeping. You should also throw out well-worn baby shoes. They tend to mould to their first owner’s feet, making them uncomfortable for younger siblings.


Being a new parent is both exciting and exhausting. The above tips, from how to wash newborn clothes to how to fold baby clothes, can help lighten the load – so next time baby empties their plate over their head you won’t be at a loose end!    

Top Tip


Always wash your baby’s clothes before they wear them for the first time – the journey from factory to shop can expose them to all sorts of things! Simply pop them in the wash with a gentle detergent like Sunlight Auto.    

Key Steps


  • Wipe off residue and soak stains before washing
  • Try natural, odour eliminating stain removers like baking powder and white distilled vinegar
  • Choose a gentle laundry detergent that keeps clothes looking and feeling like new
  • Roll baby clothes instead of folding to save space
  • Use dividers, baskets and mesh bags to separate clothes, socks and accessories