Should You Wash New Baby Clothes?

Wondering should you wash new baby clothes?

The short answer is yes!

But there are several factors you should consider before washing new baby clothes.

There is no denying that washing baby clothes before birth is a very important part of preparing for the birth of your little one, and it is important to both their health and safety as well as their comfort.

So, throughout this article we will explain some reasons for washing new baby clothes and when you should wash new baby clothes. 

And if you love this guide on when to wash baby clothes before baby arrives, make sure to check out our guide on when to wash baby clothesbest baby fabric softener, and how to wash baby clothes without shrinking them.

wash baby clothes before wearing

Should You Wash New Baby Clothes?

As we’ve already touched on yes it is important to wash baby clothes before wearing. Even if you assume the baby clothes are clean, there are many reasons for washing new baby clothes before they are worn. These include:

They May Have Been In Storage For A While 

If you started buying clothes for your bundle of joy not long after you found out that you were pregnant then some clothes may have been in your house for more than 9 months by the time the baby is born.

Clothes and fabrics are very quick to attract dust which is very dangerous for little ones lungs.

If you do not wash the clothes before use, you could be putting your child at risk of getting sick from inhaling the bacteria that has also gathered on the fabric.

Even if you have not had the clothes for long there is no saying how long they were in the shop or even the factory or warehouse for, and so they could have still gathered plenty of dust and bacteria.

You may also like this guide on whether you should hang or fold baby clothes.

They May Have Small Sharp Or Otherwise Hazardous Things Stuck To Them

Another reason for washing your baby’s clothes before they wear them is that they could have small dangerous things stuck to them such as shards of glass, plastic or metal.

These things could even be too small to see with the human eye but could be detrimental to your baby, so it is better to be safe than sorry and to wash them before letting your baby wear them.

It Can Make Materials Less Likely To Stain

Washing clothes before use can make them less likely to stain because the dirt and other particles are removed.

This means that the clothes will stay looking nice for longer and after all you have probably put a lot of time and money into choosing clothes for your little one. 

Some Clothes May Shrink In The Wash

This might sound like a funny reason to wash your baby’s clothes before they are first worn however, it will give you a truer idea as to how they will fit and will make keeping track of your little ones growth in the early days a slightly simpler task. 

Some Material May Become More Wearable 

After going around the washing machine and drying some materials become softer and easier to wear.

Not only does this make the material better for babies skin, but it also makes dressing easier as the material becomes easier to move and bend.

This can lead to fewer injuries and make the daytime routine a lot easier. 

washing baby clothes before wear

So, When Should I Wash New Baby Clothes?

Now that you understand why you need to wash new baby clothes before using, the next most essential thing knows when to do it. It doesn’t really matter when you wash new baby clothes as long as it is before your baby wears them for the first time.

However, washing them too soon could also be counterproductive as you will then place them to be left back in storage where the cycle will happen all over again before the baby has a chance to wear them. 

Therefore, it is a good idea to wash them not too long before they are needed so, for instance, for your newborn clothes it could be a good idea to wash them just a few weeks before you expect to give birth.

This way they will not be sitting gathering dust again for ages but if you do give birth slightly earlier than expected they should still be ready. 

Also, I found that I brought and was gifted a lot of baby clothes that my babies didn’t wear because they grew too fast. By leaving the labels attached and not washing them as soon as they are in your possession it gives you a chance to return or exchange them. Or even gift them on to someone else as new, unworn baby clothes.

Are There Any Exceptions To The Rule?

It is very rare that clothes should not be washed before a baby wears them however, it is important to always read the labels as you may need to do things slightly differently for certain items.

For instance, you may notice that a piece of clothing says ‘not machine washable’, if this is the case then you need to wash them without using the washing machine, so usually by hand. 

Similarly, some items may say that they can not be dried in a tumble dryer, if this is the case you will either need to dry them by hand or take them to a dry cleaner.

It is essential that all instructions are followed carefully as they could be there for safety reasons however, it is also essential that all clothes are washed before your baby wears them.

Final Thoughts on Washing Baby Clothes Before Wear

Hopefully this article has made it clear that washing baby clothes before they are worn is very critical, it should have also shed some light onto why this is the case.

After all, there is nothing more annoying than being advised to do something but given no explanation as to why.

As is the case with most safety things it is better to be safe than sorry and so the few hours that it will take to wash all of your little ones clothes should be well worth it.

Enjoy this time preparing for your little one and good luck.

And if you’re looking for more great baby guides, then check out these clothing guides on how often do you change baby clothes, best dryer sheets for babies, clever ways to organize baby clothes, and when to start buying baby clothes.

should i wash baby clothes before they wear them