Cloth Diaper Stain Removal Tip: Use The Sun For Free!

How do you remove a cloth diaper poop stain?

A cloth diaper will stain. You’ve run your diapers through several wash cycles and that shit just won’t come out (pun intended!) Now what? Don’t throw the diaper away. There’s an easy way to remove the stains without chemicals, effort, or money. Use the sun to remove cloth diaper poop stains! It’s free and works.

Sunning Diapers to remove poop stains

If you’ve followed Cloth Diaper Basics Guide to How to Clean Cloth Diapers, but are still noticing poop stains don’t worry. You didn’t do anything wrong. Sometimes diapers stain. There’s an easy hack. Let nature run its course, in this case the sun is your best friend. You can watch the stains melt away right before your eyes through the process of sunning.

How Do I Sun my Cloth Diapers

The process of sunning your cloth diapers is quite simple:

  • Wash your cloth diapers using your typical wash process, or follow our guide
  • While your cloth diapers are wet, lay your diapers inside up in direct sunlight
  • Leave in the direct sun for approximately 1 to 3 hours (anymore could ruin the integrity of the material. (More on indirect sun later.)

It’s that easy to remove a cloth diaper stain.

How does sunning my cloth diaper remove stains?

Most of us cake on sunscreen to protect our skin from the suns harmful UV Rays, and the effects of too much exposure. However, your stained cloth diapers will actually benefit from those same UV rays.

So what happens? The UV rays help to fade the stains by breaking down the chemical bond on a molecular level. While the process may sound scientific, it’s actually very simple. What happens is the radiation from the sunlight breaks down the bonds of the stain via chemical reaction, and the discoloration just melts away.

Think back to all of the laundry commercials you saw growing up in the 80’s and 90’s. The advertiser showed us white bed sheets and men’s undershirts blowing in the wind, pinned to a clothes line in the bright sunshine. The purpose of hanging those sheets and shirts was two fold: drying and helping to brighten the whites in the sun. Fast forward to today, most people use bleach to help keep whites bright. So can you bleach on your cloth diapers? You can use bleach (in very small amounts) on your cloth diapers to ensure all of the yeasts are being removed. You will want to follow the recommendations of your diapers manufacturer to ensure you aren’t voiding any type of money back guarantee.

Where should I sun my cloth diapers?

The short answer to where should you sun your diapers is, anywhere outside. If you have a clothes line that will work perfectly, but don’t fret and go out and buy the supplies to make that happen. You can use a laundry hanger drying rack to hang multiple diapers at a time, here’s one that works well. The railings (assuming they’re close to the width of the diaper) on your deck, or your patio furniture. If you’re using a clothesline, make sure to use wood clothespins, they’re less likely to cause rips and tears in your diapers. If you’re laying the diapers where you have the space, make sure you secure them if it’s a windy day, you don’t want your diapers to blow away.

Also, if it doesn’t work the first time it doesn’t mean you did it wrong. It’s hard to do this wrong. It just means the diaper wasn’t in the sunlight long enough. Obviously this isn’t true with extreme stains, but most stains won’t be extreme.

Can I sun my cloth diapers to remove a poop stain in the winter?

Poop doesn’t stop when the weather gets cold. So, how can you sun your diapers when the temps drop below freezing? You don’t need to lay your diapers out to become frozen cloth frisbees. If you have a space in your house where you can lay your diapers or inserts in direct sun, the UV rays will still penetrate and break down the molecular bond to release the stains. Sunning indoors may take longer to fully remove the stain. You can still use the diaper once it’s dry even if there is slight staining left. Once you use the diaper, repeat the sunning process again after you next wash.

Sunning can cause stiff diapers, how to resolve

Depending on the climate you live in, you may notice the insides of the diapers you sun are more stiff. You can quickly resolve the stiffness by tossing the diapers into the dryer (on a low or medium heat setting,) to resolve.

Don’t sweat the cloth diaper stain

When your little one makes a real mess of their diapers, don’t sweat it, let the diaper do the sweating. Wash as usual, lay your diapers in direct sunlight for a few hours. Once you’re done, you will be left with a new looking cloth diaper with no extra work on your part.

Happy fluffing.

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