Did you notice the seismic shift in your laundry pile as soon as your baby came along? Not only do you have spew and poo explosions to deal with, but you’ve also got less time to keep on top of the rest of the household washing.
With each new addition, the rate at which the pile grows speeds up, and you can’t expect a break. When they’re over the spewing stage, the food-throwing stage begins. And once that ends, it’s time for grass and mud stains, followed (and continued) with school uniforms.
Establishing a few laundry hacks while you’ve got a baby and toddler in the house can help save you tonnes of time and set you up to handle the later years better.
First, make sure you’re not washing things more often than you need to! (Who would dare?!)
Some people think bath towels need to be washed after every use because they harbour bacteria – but who has time for that amount of washing? Bath towels should ALWAYS be hung up to dry after every use, but towels only really need to make it into the washing machine at least once, if not twice a week.
Bed sheets can go for a week or fortnight unless you’ve got a bedwetter. If your baby has a tendency to dribble or spit up in bed then you can lay a cloth nappy across the top of her mattress, tucked in around the sides. That way if it gets dirty you can simple replace that rather than wash all the sheets.
It’s important that you use a gentle, sensitive detergent. Cold Power have a great sensitive option that delivers outstanding results, even in cold water – meaning we get the energy efficient benefits of a cold wash. Follow your garment’s washing instructions, but where possible, put them on a fast spin so they require less drying time.
PJs are best washed after three or four wears because they gather dead skin cells, but showering before bedtime means you might get away with less laundry.
Don’t be tempted to change your baby or toddler’s clothes as soon as they’re dirty, because chances are, the new clothes are likely to go the same way within minutes. If you’re around the house with no-one to judge you, reassess whether it’s really worth that extra clothing change.
Believe it or not, you can actually get your toddler to help you in the laundry! There are some little jobs that are perfect for toddlers and can even act as a learning experience, like sorting into different colours and checking all the pockets. Toddlers are great at destroying things, so why not put that skill to good use by getting them to pull the sheets off the bed?!
You can wear your baby while hanging out the washing, and get your toddler to be your special peg helper by trying to match the peg colours to the clothing. Promise them a ride back inside in the laundry basket if they do a good job.