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Bleach and cloth diapers...the good vs. the bad!

I grew up in a house that loved bleach. My mom cleaned everything with it. There was always a bottle by the kitchen sink, a bottle in the laundry room and one in the bathroom. Some people cringe at the smell of bleach, I kind of like it. The smell reminds me of home and says "clean" to me. Call me crazy. I'm sure some of you will site a million different reasons why bleach is terrible for you. My only complaint about bleach is that it's ruined far too many of my clothes! I'm clumsy. I splash it on shirts I shouldn't be wearing when I use it. I can name numerous outfits I've literally cried over because I spilled bleach on them. I've done it twice in the last month. But what about using bleach on your cloth diapers?

Clorox recommends it.

"Wash all cloth diapers before 
first use and after each wear."

Now we have no idea what kind of cloth diapers Clorox is referencing. They really don't say much at all. My guess is that they aren't referencing modern cloth diapers. For all I know, they don't even know that modern cloth diapers exist. 

Cotton Babies also recommends it for routine washing. 

"Once per month, use up to 1/4 cup 
bleach in the hot wash cycle (step 3) 
to sanitize diapers and fight odors."

They also recommend it for times when you have detergent build-up. 

Many sources believe it can be bad for diapers. Over use can weaken fabrics or cause fraying or holes. Using bleach will void the warranty on a lot of diapers, so be sure to check your manufacturer's instructions! 

I use bleach on my microfiber inserts (and my Flip organics). I've only done it twice now in the 10 months I've been cloth diapering. It helps to get the odors out and they end up so soft! Just this morning, I took all the microfiber inserts out of every pocket diaper so I could bleach them. It doesn't take too long, but it does use a lot of water. I like to do a 2-3 rinses after bleaching to be sure I got all the chemicals out of the fabric.

There are other alternatives of course. There's always lemon juice and sun for stains. Oxygen bleach and bac-out work well for stains and odors too. Just be careful not to void any warranties!

Have you ever bleached your diapers? Are you afraid of bleach? Anyone else regularly ruin an outfit with bleach?

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