How to Strip Wash Nappies: The Ultimate Guide

Strip washing nappies is seen as a big job, but it doesn’t have to be. Follow this guide and you’ll soon find out how easy stripping your cloth nappies can be!

5 Steps to Strip Wash Reusable Nappies

  1. Do a maintenance wash on your machine before you start.
  2. Add all the nappies you need to do a wash on into the machine. Do a short wash at 40°C with no detergent.
  3. Do the longest wash your machine can do at 40°C using a full dose of detergent (normal bio). Yes, add detergent here.
  4. Repeat the long cycle with no detergent.
  5. Run a quick wash with no detergent to be sure there are no detergent bubbles in the machine. If you do see soap bubbles, repeat the process. Continue doing so until no more soap bubbles are visible.
5 Steps to Strip Wash Reusable Nappies

Do you need to strip wash your cloth nappies?

It’s uncommon to need to perform a strip wash if you have a good wash routine. It’s occasionally necessary, though. Liquid detergent is often the cause and we don’t advise using it. Also not using an extra rinse cycle at the end. To get really clean cloth nappies we always recommend the cold rinse cycle before you take them out of the machine and this should stop your nappies smelling. Getting your washing routine right is key and read our guide to cleaning nappies.

Also detergent residue can be in your nappies, but also in your machine.

But, if you haven’t been washing your nappies well for a while, you have detergent build-up, or if they are second-hand and haven’t been cared-for correctly, you may need to do a strip cloth nappies.

If your nappies are leaking, or if you’re experiencing ammonia burn then that means the pH balance of the water in which you wash them is incorrect and needs adjusting.

The most common reason for this to happen is too much detergent being used – either by accident (putting double amounts in) or on purpose (to try and get them extra clean).

You may also have too much ‘gunk’ in your nappies. This can happen when using non-cloth friendly creams, or if they’re being washed at too high a temperature for the fabric to cope with or using modern detergents like liquid detergent.

Detergent buildup traps bacteria in the air producing stink and rashes. The problem will get notified if your baby is teething and smells more strong even if you leave their baby on the same nappy. The best way to remove skin and hair is by washing. Strip washing is difficult to work on nappies and should only be applied if required. Maybe it is better to take them away if they have a smell after the first use or they do not appear the same absorbable as before. Check out my best tips for washing your diaper on a washing machine.

Stripping cloth nappies: before you start

You should not clean PUL shells or covers except the absorber parts. If you keep your nappies permanently attached to your PUL you need a PUL-friendly way to attach them. Find out what your Nappy manufacturer’s website contains about the most effective methods for stripping your nappy. Run maintenance cycles of our washing machines before starting and verify the detergents not in the drawer. Finally put the diaper through a weekly (60) washer and make the baby’s legs are clean to avoid residue. –

Dishwashing liquid and dishwasher tablet stripping

Stop just stop with the dishwasher tablets. If you’ve read this anyway run a mile, a long long mile.

Do preloved nappies need to be strip washed?

It’s hard to know. They could have been care for perfectly but you never know what laundry powder they have used, if they have used stain remover, if they have used fabric conditioner. It’s always best to err on the side of caution and strip wash 2nd hand nappies when you buy them.

Should I use less detergent?

Detergent amount is determined by your water (is it hard water or soft water area), machine size, machine type, load size, drum size etc. Just use the recommended dose and then do a second wash or extra rinses with no detergent to ensure its fully rinsed out. Nappies have been on a baby’s bum and will have heavy soiling so a good long wash for your cloth nappy on a cotton cycle is ideal and then check for soap bubbles and do a second wash if needed. Water hardness is the key reason and if you have very hard water you will probably be more prone to detergent build up.

Why do people strip nappies?

As a principle you shouldn’t need to cut up nappies from paper. This doesn’t constitute the regular wash. So when you really need these it is important to tweak your every day cleaning routine also. If your nappy leaks, check that your child’s elastic is still tightly attached around their legs. You can also check absorbency immediately by holding nappy under a dripping tap and see whether the water goes down (all okay) or beads and rolls (times to strip) Will absorbibility be improved? Most likely culprits would be barrier-based creams and fabric softeners. The best solution is to use barrier cream.

After stripping: avoid repeating!

Gel detergent may cause a longer residue in clothes pipes than is left in powder. Some cloth napping sites recommend powder to be better than liquid. If you have used gel you should always try cleaning the machine once each time to avoid any streaks. Bear in mind the nappy wash is often lower than a regular ‘full-load of water’ as nappies generally require washing more regularly. If you don’t have enough detergent your washing machine will need reducing to a second half full. It requires more detergent in cold water surfaces. Washing machines differ a lot in quality.

Do you need to clean your washing machine?

Every washing machine, whether being use for cloth nappies or not will need to have a maintenance cycle done frequently.

Washing machines can be dirty and full of germs, but there is an easy way to get rid of them.

Germs thrive in a moist environment with dark colors like black or blue-green mixed into it – this includes dirt from clothes as well! The best way would be running vinegar through your washer once every week on Saturday morning when you do all those household chores together rather than leaving these parts dirty until next payday (or worse yet–use castile soap). If that sounds too much work then just use bleach instead; simply fill up about 3/4ths full instructions say for enough time before draining out any excess liquid around the sink area since having clean water available helps prevent cross contamination between family members using different fixtures

Why Washing Nappies is so COmplicated

It shouldn’t be, just a lot of myths have come up over the years and people have just made it more and more. Read our definitive guide to cleaning nappies and keep it simple!


If you have a baby, then you know how much laundry they generate. One of the most frequently asked questions about cloth nappies is whether or not to strip wash them. The answer depends on what kind of detergent was previously used and if it leaves behind any residue that could irritate your child’s sensitive skin. If you have very hard water, you will probably be more prone to detergent build up.

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