After a baby arrives, it can seem as if the laundry doubles! Many parents think they need to use baby detergent to clean their little one's clothes. And when a newborn's skin is sensitive, this can be true.

But if baby detergent isn't getting rid of stains and odors as well as you'd like, it might be time to switch to a regular liquid detergent. (Liquid detergents can rinse out easier than powder detergents, so might be better for sensitive skin.)

Unless your baby has allergies, eczema/atopic dermatitis, or another condition causing sensitive skin, washing your little one's clothes with the rest of the family's clothes isn't likely to irritate your baby's skin.

If you switch from a baby detergent, test wash one piece of your baby's clothing with a color- and fragrance-free detergent. If you notice a skin reaction, stick with baby detergent for a little while longer. Whatever detergent you choose, avoid anti-static products or fabric softeners, which often have chemicals and fragrances that can irritate skin.

Note: Cloth diapers do need to be separated from your regular laundry because harsh detergents can cause diaper rash. Wash these with mild baby detergent in hot water and be sure to double rinse each load.

Back to Articles


Related Articles

Pregnancy & Newborn Center

Advice and information for expectant and new parents.

Read More

Diapering Your Baby

Babies may use up to 10 diapers a day! Get the basics on how to diaper like a pro.

Read More

Diaper Rash

Diaper rash is a very common infection that can cause a baby's skin to become sore, red, scaly, and tender. In most cases, it clears up with simple changes in diapering.

Read More

A Guide for First-Time Parents

If you're a first-time parent, put your fears aside and get the basics in this guide about burping, bathing, bonding, and other baby-care concerns.

Read More

Trimming Your Baby's Nails

Cutting your little one's nails can be a bit scary. Here's how to do it safely.

Read More

Looking at Your Newborn: What's Normal

When you first meet your newborn, you may be surprised by what you see. Here's what to expect.

Read More

First Aid: Diaper Rash

Diaper rash is a common skin condition in babies. In most cases, the condition clears up quickly with a few simple changes.

Read More

All About Allergies

Millions of Americans, including many kids, have an allergy. Find out how allergies are diagnosed and how to keep them under control.

Read More

Bonding With Your Baby

Bonding, the intense attachment that develops between you and your baby, is completely natural. And it's probably one of the most pleasurable aspects of infant care.

Read More

Sleep and Your Newborn

Newborn babies don’t yet have a sense of day and night. They wake often to eat – no matter what time it is.

Read More

Note: All information is for educational purposes only. For specific medical advice, diagnoses, and treatment, consult your doctor. © 1995-2021 KidsHealth®. All rights reserved. Images provided by The Nemours Foundation, iStock, Getty Images, Veer, Shutterstock, and Clipart.com.

Search our entire site.