If you are currently pregnant I am sure that the prospect of buying lots of cute little outfits is very exciting, but are you unsure what to buy? Do you know how to wash and care for those clothes? Let me answer the common questions I hear.
When designing for Next of Kin, the easy care of the clothing was essential, I have only used fabrics which can be washed in the washing machine, and my first test with any new sample I got through was to try it on my wriggly baby, if it was hard to get her into, or to change her nappy then it was an instant NO.
1. Do you have to wash baby clothes before they wear them?
It's a good idea to wash all baby clothes before your little one wears them. Use a gentle, hypoallergenic detergent to ensure that any irritants or residues from manufacturing are removed. This step is crucial, especially if your baby has sensitive skin.
2. Can baby clothes be washed in the washing machine?
Yes, absolutely, with a newborn in the house I don't expect you to have time to wash by hand. All of Next of Kin clothes are able to be machine washed, but do check the label for other brands. You are also probably wondering, can baby clothes be washed with adult clothes? And again, yes they can, just ensure you are using a baby-safe detergent for that wash. While fabric softeners may make clothes feel softer, they can also leave a residue that might irritate your baby's delicate skin, so consider skipping the softener for that wash, using a baby-friendly fabric conditioner or simply double rinse the clothes to ensure all detergent is thoroughly removed.
3. Can baby clothes go in the dryer?
Ok, so they can go in the washing machine but can baby clothes be put in the dryer? This depends on what the label states. However if you are in a warm country like I am, then I would advise you to hang the clothing out to dry for the outfit's longevity, but also because sunlight is a natural disinfectant and stain remover. The sun's rays will help eliminate any remaining bacteria and leave clothes smelling fresh.
4. What baby clothes do I need to buy?
You probably need less baby clothes than you think for your newborn. You will likely receive lots of clothing gifts, I always advise my customers buying gifts to consider buying larger sizing and thinking about the time of year it will be when they wear that. At the start you will probably only be dressing your baby in comfy vests and onesies. You will only want to change them into clothing which is easy, so avoid buttons on the back, or clothing which would make it hard to change their nappy. I designed our Elliot onesies to be the exact item I was looking for my newborn, with ultra-soft bamboo, an easy double zip closure (you'll thank me during middle of the night nappy changes!), covered feet and removable scratch mitts.
5. What baby clothes do I need to take to hospital?
My hospital advised me to bring 10 x onesies and 10 x vests but check with your hospital. I would recommend bringing a mixture of sizes newborn and 0-3 months in case you have a larger or smaller baby. One item of clothing that I forgot for my newborn was mittens. These are not necessarily to keep their hands warm but instead to keep them from scratching themselves, their tiny nails can be very sharp! This is why our onesie has in-built fold-over scratch mitts.
6. Where to donate baby clothes and where to sell baby clothes?
They grow out of their clothes so quickly, and sometimes barely get any use out of them so I always urge my customers to pass down baby clothes to friends and family, if they have no one to pass them down to they can utilise our preloved initiative. Otherwise there are lots of ways to pass on and donate your baby clothes. In Dubai we have groups like Hope Amel or you can find a local freecycle or pay it forward group on facebook. I would also advise you to post in your local Mums groups, they may know of a Mummy in need who might want the clothes. If you would prefer to sell the clothes, I would recommend booking a table at Baby Bazaar, you can of course advertise on the facebook and whatsapp groups, but I would urge you to take good photos when doing this.
7. Newborn clothes vs 0-3 months
You might notice that most of Next of Kin's range starts at 0-3 months (this is the same as 3m by the way), and that's because a lot of babies will be born fitting 0-3 months straight away, even if it is a bit baggy. So do not go overboard on the newborn size, if you do end up needing a newborn onesie, we have same day UAE delivery!
My other top tips for caring for baby clothes:
Handle Stains Promptly
Accidents are bound to happen, and baby clothes are not immune to stains. Treat stains promptly using a gentle stain remover, or make a DIY solution using baking soda and water.
Proper storage is key to maintaining the quality of baby clothes. Use breathable storage containers, like cotton or mesh bags, to protect clothes from dust and pests. Make sure the storage area is cool and dry to prevent mold and mildew.
Periodically check your baby's clothes for any signs of wear, tear, or loose buttons. Replace or repair items as needed to ensure your baby's safety and comfort. A loose button can quickly become a safety habit.
Please share in the comments your preferred baby detergent that you would recommend to other Mums.