Can You Use Fabric Softener On Baby Clothes

Fabric softener or fabric conditioner is one of the things we use every time we wash our clothes without even thinking. It’s part of the routine.

Can You Use Fabric Softener On Baby Clothes

What you may not know about fabric softener is that it’s not advisable to use it on baby clothes. So, can you use fabric softener on baby clothes, and why shouldn’t you? Let’s find out!

Can You Use Fabric Softener On Baby Clothes?

When you’ve got a baby or a newborn, you’ll have endless piles of clothes and laundry to do.

With all of the diapers, little accidents, food splattered across the bibs and sticky fingers everywhere, you can imagine how many loads of laundry you’ll have to do.

When doing laundry, we all do the same things, we use laundry detergent on the clothes, and add a splash of fabric conditioner or softener to freshen up the clothes and make them feel smooth to the touch!

Fabric softener is an essential if you want ultra soft and velvety feeling clothes that smell fresh all day long. However, it is not always right for everyone.

Experts say that washing your baby’s clothes in fabric softener can reduce the flame resistance of the material, and can irritate your baby’s sensitive skin.

Even though you can use fabric softener on your baby’s clothes, it is not recommended as this can cause allergic reactions or can irritate the skin and result in inflammation.

In addition, the fabric softener can reduce the flame resistant coating on the material, making it unsafe for your child.

How Do I Wash Baby Clothes?

How Do I Wash Baby Clothes

To wash baby clothes, it is best to check the label for the recommended washing instructions.

However, we do advise that you pre soak the clothes in water before washing, and make sure that you are washing them separately from your other laundry items and clothing.

You really have to be careful when it comes to washing your baby’s clothes as they pose a risk of bacteria and washing them as normal may not get rid of all of the bacteria and germs.

This can put your child at risk, as they may not have developed a strong immune system yet.

This is why we say to pre-soak the clothing in hot water to kill off any germs and bacteria stuck in the clothing.

Then, wash the baby clothes in your washing machine on a low temperature such as 30 degrees celsius or 40 degrees celsius, which should get rid of any stains and dirt on the clothes.

You should also ensure that you use a newborn or baby specific laundry detergent, or one that is hypoallergenic and safe for sensitive skin.

Once washed, you can also soak the clothes in warm water after the wash to get rid of any bacteria, and allow it to air dry.

If possible, try to leave the baby clothes dry in the sun or in the heat as this can act as a natural disinfectant that can further sterilize the clothing.

If you want to keep the clothes soft, then you can instead put it on a very gentle wash cycle or a setting for wool and delicates.

Then, wash on a low temperature, with a very mild non-bio detergent, and leave the baby clothes to dry naturally. This should ensure that they remain soft without using a fabric softener.


To summarize, you can use fabric softener on your baby clothes if you want to, but it is not recommended that you do.

Using fabric softener on baby clothes can make them soft and smell nice, but it also reduces the flame resistance of the clothing, and can irritate your baby’s sensitive skin.

Instead, you can use baking soda or a little white vinegar when washing the clothes to keep them soft, fresh and hygienic, without ruining the fire resistant coating on the clothing, to keep your baby safe and clean.

Frequently Asked Questions

Why Shouldn’t You Use Fabric Softener On Baby Clothes?

Let’s face it, you’ve probably already nailed your laundry routine after all of these years.

You already know not to wash towels with clothes, and to separate your colored clothes and your whites. 

There are so many rules to follow, and things to remember, but you may not think about the baby clothes and what’s best to do with them.

The main reason that you should not use fabric conditioner on baby clothes is because they are treated with flame resistant chemicals for the baby’s safety in case of any emergency, incidents or accidents.

When using fabric softener, it can make the clothes more vulnerable to heat and flames.

In addition, washing your baby’s clothes on a high heat of more than 50 degrees can also damage the flame resistance.

How Do You Make Baby Clothes Soft Without Fabric Softener?

If you want to make your baby clothes soft and fresh, but you don’t want to use fabric softener, then you can try adding ½ a cup of baking soda to your washing machine and let it dissolve in the water before adding in the clothes.

Stephanie Creek