The 10 Top-Rated Laundry Soaps for Newborns

The odds are that you are stocking up on all kinds of supplies in anticipation of the day your baby arrives. One often overlooked necessity that you will need almost immediately is mild laundry soap for your newborn.

 

Babies and loads of laundry go hand in hand, so you will want to have a ready supply of detergent on hand to keep your little one’s clothes, bedding, blankies, and burp clothes clean and spot free.

A newborn’s skin is sensitive. It has not been exposed to the rampant environmental irritants that plague the world today. Helping to ensure that your baby doesn’t develop a rash or chafing is always paramount in every parent’s mind. One of the best ways to take care of your little one’s skins is to wash all clothing, blankets, stuffies, diapers, and other essentials in a mild, natural soap that has been tailored with a baby’s unique needs in mind. 10 Best Laundry Soaps for Newborns

Why is Laundry Soap for Babies so Special?

Laundry soap for babies has undergone extensive testing to determine the safety of each product. In many cases, the soap has been dermatologist and pediatrician tested to ensure that it will not harm your little one’s sensitive skin. Most laundry detergents tailored for babies have no bleach or harmful substances. They are typically milder than standard soaps.

Laundry Soap is Not Just for Your Newborn

When choosing laundry soap for your newborn, you need to also consider using the same detergent to wash your household clothing, bedding, towels, and essentials. Your newborn spends most of his life nestled close to your body so the laundry soap you choose should not only be for your newborn but also for your entire household.

Skin Irritation and Your Baby

Initially, newborns have sensitive skin, so harsh laundry soaps are not ideal. All soap leaves a residue on the material that is quickly transferred to your little one’s fragile skin. It can cause irritation, itching, or even a rash on a newborn. Your baby’s eyes can even become irritated by soap residue if he rubs his delicate face across a blanket, bedding, spit-up cloths, or a beloved stuffy that has been washed with irritating soap.

Skin allergies to soap may be quite severe for sensitive babies. Blotchy red dots that are itchy and painful are an all too common reaction to the often harsh chemicals found in many laundry soaps.

Choosing a Baby-Friendly Laundry Detergent

Ideally, the laundry detergent you choose should be free of harsh chemicals and be predominately natural. However, one key factor is that the soap has to do what it is intended to do which is clean clothes and remove stains. You don’t want all those cute baby clothes marred by set-in stains because you have unwisely opted to use a less than effective detergent. Whatever laundry soap you decide to use in your household and baby items must have two key features: it must be baby safe and it must actually remove stains from clothing.

Cloth Diapers and Soap

Many parents are opting to again use cloth diapers in an effort to save money and also to provide their baby with a more natural material. Unfortunately, cloth diapers are notorious for soaking up soap residue. Laundry soap that contains excessive oils is easily absorbed into the cloth diaper material. The very fact that cloth diapers are going to cover your infant’s most vulnerable and sensitive body areas makes it imperative that you choose a laundry soap that effectively removes even the worse blow out stains but remains mild enough to not cause unwanted irritation on your baby’s private region.

Baby Laundry Detergent Features

Dye and Fragrance-free

Fragrances and dyes have been shown to be potential skin irritants and many people are allergic to them. They are typically considered unnecessary ingredients. Many people prefer fragrance-free laundry but others opt to have a pleasing aroma in their clothes. Ultimately, each parent will have to choose their own personal preference and determine if the fragrance is potentially harmful to their newborn.

No Brighteners

Brighteners do not truly brighten clothing. They are a chemical that is used to make clothing absorb UV light and appear brighter. It is just an illusion. In fact, the chemicals can actually be harmful to a newborn’s delicate skin. Also, the dangers of long-term exposure to certain chemical brighteners are still being researched.

Regular or High Efficiency 

Anyone with a high efficiency (HE) washing machine needs to make sure that the soap is safe to use in the machine. HE safe detergents do not create excessive suds.

Plant-based

Plant-based laundry soaps are eco-friendly. Although, just because a detergent is plant-based does not mean it will not irritate or cause an allergic reaction because many individuals are allergic to certain types of plants and their chemical compounds.

Pods

In recent years, laundry detergent pods have become very popular but they are dangerous to small children. Children often become fascinated with the colorful pods and have been known to place them into their mouths. Pods should be avoided by parents, especially anyone with toddlers.

Liquid or Powder

Powder detergents usually perform better but liquids are ultra concentrated and you often get more for your money with a liquid detergent.

1. Charlie’s Soap Laundry Powder

10 Best Laundry Soaps for Newborns Charlie Soap

Some cloth diaper manufacturers actually recommend that parents use Charlie’s Soap Laundry Powder to clean their cloth diapers. It is free of any harsh chemicals and does not leave any oily or residual build up on diapers or clothes. The soap isn’t a new product. It has been a favorite laundry soap option that moms consistently turn to since 1976. Many product enthusiasts say that their clothes actually last longer when they use this detergent versus other petroleum-based laundry products.

Things to Keep in Mind

Charlie’s Soap Laundry Powder comes in a powder form and contains the following active ingredients:

All Natural Mineral and Biodegradable Ingredients

Sodium carbonate

Sodium metasilicate which is a rinse aid that is created by mixing sand with sodium carbonate.

C12-15 (which is a vegetable and mineral sources surfactant)

Pareth-2 (which is a vegetable and mineral sourced surfactant)

This product is fragrance-free. It has no fragrance which is ideal if your baby is an allergy sufferer because many infants are allergic to the chemicals that produce the various scents in soaps. Although it features no smell, it still effectively removes even the toughest diaper odors from the material. Your clothes will smell clean and natural with no cover-up fragrances.

A small tub will usually allow you to wash 80 loads. It is highly concentrated so a small scoop is all you need to do a full load of laundry. The directions state that it only takes one tablespoon per load. The manufacturer does sell a monster-sized tub that does 1250 loads for an economical bulk rate price.

Parent Guide recommends Charlie’s Soap Laundry Powder as the best newborn laundry soap option.

Who’s it Best for?

This laundry powder is ideal for babies with sensitive skin and allergies.It is also wonderful to use as the whole house laundry detergent choice because it is safe to use on silk, wool, linen, cotton, and even high-tech microfibers.

Although it does cost a little more than other brands, it effectively cleans and removes set-in stains that other detergents typically have a difficult time lifting out of cloth. It is safe for use in an HE front loader.

2. Seventh Generation Natural Detergent

10 Best Laundry Soaps for Newborns Seventh Generation

Seventh Generation Natural Baby Laundry Detergent is non-toxic, hypoallergenic, has no synthetic fragrances, and has no brighteners. It has been clinically formulated by the manufacturer for a newborn’s delicate skin. It effectively cleans even set in stains such as spit up, baby poop, and baby food soiling without leaving behind any residue. Live About recommends this product as one of their top five baby laundry soap choices.

Things to Keep in Mind

This eco-friendly formula is made of 96 percent natural materials and biodegradable. It is 4x as concentrated versus other leading brands. The formula features a quadruple-enzyme stain fighting ingredient to effortlessly lift away even set in stains.

It has no synthetic fragrance but it does have a fresh odor that is created by combining 100 percent essential oils and extracts into the ingredients. Some users love the natural, refreshing scent but others have voiced concerns about the use of essential oils. Although essential oils and extracts are considered safe and natural, some sensitive individuals may suffer a skin reaction or allergy symptoms when exposed. If your baby shows any skin sensitivity after using the product, you should immediately cease use.

Unlike other laundry products, Seventh Generation’s laundry detergent contains no optical brighteners which are synthetic chemicals. Optical brighteners are common in many brands of laundry detergent because they make clothes appear brighter and cleaner in ultraviolet light.  Unfortunately, they only create the illusion of clean and the clothing is not really clean and may have chemical residues if the product boasts an optical brightener.

One 40-ounce size lets you do 106 average size loads of laundry. It is a moderately priced so one large bottle will last you awhile. Users often report that the measurements on the cap are difficult to see. However, if you have trouble measuring the product you can keep a measuring cup close by.

Who’s it Best for?

This product is ideal for whole household use. It is safe to use in an HE front loader. The Seventh Generation company also sells spray on stain lifters that are natural and safe for use on baby’s clothing items. If you care about your baby and the environment then this eco-friendly option might be perfect for your family.

3.  Zum Clean Laundry Detergent

10 Best Laundry Soaps for Newborns Zum

This is a completely natural laundry soap option that contains very few ingredients but leaves your clothes exceptionally clean. It truly lifts away spots with ease. Zum Clean contains a mixture of sodium cocoate, which is a 100 percent coconut oil,  sodium bicarbonate (simple baking soda), essential oils and glycerin (a vegetable). With so few active ingredients it is amazing how well this product truly works. It does not produce very many suds but it definitely cleans. The Parent Guide recommends it as one of their top choices.

Things to Keep in Mind

The one major drawback about Zum is that it contains a lot of coconut oil. This is great for cleaning. Coconut oil has been used in many island and tropical countries for generations as a favored clothing soap. However, the oil builds up in the material of cloth diapers and over time it renders them less absorbent. If your baby doesn’t use cloth diapers then this is a non-issue and this is a fantastic household and newborn safe choice.

One 64 ounce size of Zum  Clean Laundry Soap washes 32 loads in a top-loading washing machine and 64 loads in a high-efficiency washing machine.

They do sell other laundry soap choices that can be used for newborn clothing:

Zum Aromatherapy Laundry Soap, Eucalyptus Citrus

Zum Lavender Clean Laundry Soap

Indigo Wild Zum Clean Laundry Soap, Frankincense, and Myrrh.

All of the Zum products are natural and work well but should be used with caution on an infant’s clothing because some babies can have an allergic reaction to certain essential oils.

Who’s it Best For?

Zum Clean is a great choice for anyone seeking a 100 percent natural product that features ingredients like coconut oil which has been used for centuries to safely clean clothes. Zum Clean is a bit more expensive than other laundry soaps but it is eco-friendly and has a solid reputation.

4. Soap Nuts

10 Best Laundry Soaps for Newborns NaturOil

This is not a common or conventional brand of laundry soap but it is phenomenal at cleaning clothes. I personally used Soap Nuts this product when my own children were babies. I stumbled upon the item for sale in a small town in Oregon. At first, I thought it was just a novelty item and could not possibly clean a load of laundry but upon investigation, I decided that I had to try the tiny nuggets and I wasn’t disappointed. Now I have a lifelong love affair with Soap Nuts and I won’t wash my family’s clothing in anything else.

Soap Nuts are not an average liquid or powdered soap but instead, they are tiny, shriveled up berries. Soap Nuts are 100 percent natural sun-dried Sapindus Mukorossi soap berries that are harvested in India and Nepal. The berries grow on trees that are found in the Himalayan mountain range. Locals have used the berries for centuries to wash clothing. Soap Nuts are the number choice by Eco Nuts.

The harvested berries are shipped to the United States and packaged as Soap Nuts. The berries contain saponin which is an all natural detergent. All you do is grab a five or six berries and place them within the cute little drawstring cloth wash bag that comes with them. Place the wash bag into your washing machine. You can reuse the washbag with the berries six or seven times before you need to load it with new berries.  The berries are de-seeded so you don’t have to worry about any seeds in your laundry.

Things to Keep in Mind

Soap nuts leave no residue on clothing. They are ideal for allergy sufferers. The tiny berries are 100 percent non-toxic so you don’t ever have to worry if your little one grabs a handful of soap nuts and shoves them into their mouth (unlike many laundry detergent pods which are extremely dangerous if consumed)

Who’s it Best for?

Soap Nuts are a wonderful way to truly wash your clothes with an all natural and effective product. One pound of soap nuts will do 240 loads of wash which makes this laundry soap option extremely affordable.

5.  Biokleen

Best Laundry Soaps for Newborns Biokleen

Biokleen is a chemical-free, fragrance-free, and dye-free laundry cleaning option. It contains a combination of plant-based surfactants and extracts of grapefruit seed which has been shown to effectively remove tough, ground-in stains. The all natural laundry product has been manufactured since 1989 and gained a large fan base of moms who are looking for a safe, gentle detergent for their baby items. Mom Tricks names it as one of their top choices.

Things to Keep in Mind

When using Biokleen your clothing rinses clean leaving no residue. It also produces no harsh fumes or after smell. This product is truly fragrance-free.  

Who’s it Best for?

Although this product is a bit expensive, it is a highly concentrated laundry formula so a little bit goes long ways. The 64-ounce container will do 120 loads of wash in an HE front load washer or 64 loads of wash in a standard washer.

6.  Mama Bear Laundry Detergent

10 Best Laundry Soaps for Newborns Mama BearMama Bear Laundry Detergent was designed for the soft and delicate skin of your little one. It is free of all phthalates and dyes. It has no artificial scents but it does have a light smell that is derived from a combination of essential oils and botanical extracts. It leaves behind no residue so it’s great for use on cloth diapers. Users report that it’s also fantastic for lifting away even the toughest stains.

The ingredients are composed of 6 plant-derived cleaning agents. Specific enzymes have been incorporated into the formula to provide superior stain fighting ability.

Things to Keep in Mind

If you are looking for a gentle soap that leaves behind a soft, subtle scent then the Mama Bear Laundry Detergent might be your best choice. Maternity Glow lists it as one of their top laundry detergent brand choices for a newborn.

Who’s it Best for?

The formula is 4x concentrated so it lasts a long time. The manufacturer estimates that their product works out to only $0.22 per load, which is extremely cost-efficient compared to other leading brands. It can be used HE front loading washers or standard washers.

7.  The Honest Company Laundry Detergent

10 Best Laundry Soaps for Newborns Honest

The Honest Company has made a name for themselves with mail order diapers, but they also offer Honest Company Laundry Detergent. The laundry soap is one of Jessica Alba’s top eco-friendly products. It is non-toxic and free of harsh chemicals. The soap also has no synthetic perfumes or dyes. It is a pH neutral formula that is specifically designed to tackle stained baby items.

Things to Keep in Mind

Even though this product is gentle enough for your newborn, it is also tough enough to do the whole household’s laundry. It works in both an HE front loading washer or a standard washing machine. One 70-ounce bottle will wash 70 loads in an HE washer. However, it takes twice as much detergent for use in a standard washer versus a front loader.

This detergent is highly effective at removing stains. Even potato puree and spaghetti sauce stains were significantly reduced. Whites truly do appear whiter and colors bolder with continued use. Today’s Parent named The Honest Company Laundry Detergent as one of their top choices for 2017.

Who’s it Best for?

If you are looking for an ideal all-around soap that is suitable not just for your newborn’s delicate skin but also the whole family then this might be an ideal choice. It is affordable and widely available.

8.  Charlie Banana Eco-Friendly Laundry Soap

Best Laundry Soaps for Newborns Charlie Banana

If you are a steadfast cloth diaper user then you will definitely want to check out Charlie Banana Eco-Friendly Laundry Soap. This soap powder has been created specifically for cloth diapers. It is specifically designed to eliminate stains on cloth diapers from even the worst bum blowout. Cloth diapers will not only look pristine but they will also have no lingering odors after you use this detergent. So Easy Being Green picked this as one of their top baby soap choices.

Things to Keep in Mind

These soap flakes are made from coconut oil which is a key cleaner choice in many parts of the world. However, unlike other products that also feature coconut oil, this soap does not have an excessive amount of it so your cloth diapers won’t soak up any oily residue. It is manufactured with just the key essentials that make it a superior cleaning choice.

Charlie Banana comes in a convenient 2.64-pound size. It only takes a tiny scoop of this soap so the tub will usually last you two or three months if you are a heavy laundry washer. Estimates vary, but most agree that you can expect at least 80 loads of laundry out of one tub. It is safe to use in either an HE or standard washer.

Who’s it Best for?

If you are looking for a soap wash option not only for your baby’s nappies but also for your household items then this might be a perfect choice. It is relatively thrifty and the large tub size means you won’t have to worry about running out often.

9.  Mrs. Meyer’s Clean Day Baby Blossom

10 Best Laundry Soaps for Newborns Mrs Meyers

Some parent’s love a laundry detergent that smells good. If your baby doesn’t have any allergies then this might be an ideal option. Mrs Meyers is naturally scented with lemons and oranges for a citrusy smell that is pure heaven. Unlike some laundry soaps that have no scent, this brand has been tailored to be an aromatic experience that soothes and relaxes your baby. Besides smelling divine, this detergent also gets the stains out effectively.

Things to Keep in Mind

It is made of 97 percent natural ingredients. It is dermatologist tested and should be gentle enough for your newborn. Stain Removal 101 picked this as one of their top choices.

Highly concentrated at 2x, just one ounce will clean even the most soiled load of laundry. It is safe for use in both HE washing machines and conventional washers.

Who’s it Best for?

If you want a product that lifts away dirt, grime, and set in stains but remains gentle enough for your little one’s skin then this might be a great laundry soap option. Its modestly priced and one jug lasts for at least 64 loads according to the label.

10.  Purex Baby

10 Best Laundry Soaps for Newborns Purex

Many parents might overlook Purex Baby because of its low-cost price tag and ready availability at virtually all shopping centers. They might erroneously assume that it’s somehow subpar compared to more costly options. However, this soap has undergone extensive testing and held its own next many competitor’s brands.

Things to Keep in Mind

It is dye-free and dermatologist tested. The one main drawback is that it does have a synthetic smell, but if your baby doesn’t suffer allergies and you don’t mind the pleasant smell then this might be an option.

There is no doubt that the low cost of this detergent makes it appealing. It is estimated that it only costs 0.08 cents per load. One 50-ounce jug size which will do 33 loads Your Best Digs chooses this brand as one of their best infant detergents for 2017 based on performance and cost efficiency.

One thing to take into consideration is that this product does contain surfactants, unlike more eco-friendly, natural choices. Despite this drawback, parent reviews for this baby soap detergent remain consistently high. Moms report that it has a fantastic fragrance and it gets clothes clean, even heavily stained and soiled items come out looking bright and spot free.  Parents with newborns also report no adverse effects when used around their baby’s sensitive skin.

Who’s it Best for?

If you are looking for a newborn laundry soap brand that is sold in just about every supermarket for an affordable price then this might be an ideal option.

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Kimberly Sharpe

Based in Florida, Kimberly Sharpe has been a full-time writer since 2006. Her writing has a strong focus on travel, parenting, outdoor sports, gardening, health issues, pets (both domestic and exotic), home improvement, DIY, and business promos. Her work has appeared in USA Today, MORR Gear, Hipmunk, Travelocity, Livestrong, Hotels.com, Hydro Live, Maximum Yield, eHow, Yahoo News, SF Gate, Garden Guides, Whitefence, S.F. Gate, fixr.com, and numerous other publications. She has traveled extensively throughout Europe, India, and Sri Lanka in an effort to expand her knowledge and enhance her writing skills.

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