Cloth Diaper Kids Blog

FuzziBunz cloth diapers and other green baby products


How Do I ‘Strip’ My Cloth Diapers?

Basically ‘stripping’ just means removing any build up in your diapers which might be causing repelling, smell, leaking etc.  Note that here is no need to strip your diapers unless you are having issues and a proper wash routine can prevent you from having to do it at all.

Long story short, there are a number of ways to do it, but this is what we like to do. You can also do this periodically as part of your regular diaper maintenance to prevent problems as well and prolong the life of your diapers (aprox. every few months) if you want.

RLR Strip
Most commonly used to remove mineral buildup and whiten diapers especially in Canada where harder water is common even in cities.  RLR is an additive that helps suspend residue in the wash water so that it can rinse away instead of re-depositing on the diapers. Best for sprucing up older, dingy diapers or those whose absorbency has been compromised do to mineral buildup in the fabric.  RLR may help for smell issues, but Funk Rock is usually better for this (see stripping with Funk Rock below).

– Simply add the packet of RLR to a clean load of diapers (12-16 diapers) and do a hot wash followed by several rinses with no detergent.

*Alternatively for a deeper clean, put clean diapers in the bathtub, add hot water to cover them.  Add the packet and mix around to dissolve.  Leave to soak 3-4hrs or overnight.  Transfer diapers to washing machine.  Do a hot wash or rinse with no detergent until they rinse clean. Dry as usual.

Simple, Fast & Cheap
Before spending money on any stripping method.  First try a few hot wash cycles with no detergent followed by drying as usual.  This can often help a lot of cloth diapering issues, especially if baby is having rashes because of detergent left behind on the fabric that they are sensitive to.  In this case, change detergents after stripping and make sure you’re using the correct amount for the load size you are washing.

Funk Rock Strip
For ammonia buildup, and smell issues.

– Follow the package directions and add the recommended amount of Funk Rock to clean diapers in a bathtub similar to doing an RLR strip.  Then transfer diapers to your washing machine and wash on hot WITH detergent.  Rinse until no bubbles, dry as usual.

Oxiclean Strip
Good for a deep clean once in a while.  Doesn’t treat any particular problem specifically.

– Put your clean diapers in the wash and run a hot soak or rinse cycle with NO detergent of any kind.
– Then add 4-5 scoops of Oxiclean Regular or another oxygen bleach (NOT the Oxiclean Free and NOT chlorine bleach) and run a hot cycle. (Use the Oxiclean that comes in powder form). Dry your diapers as usual.

Blue Dawn Strip
This is one I don’t often recommend, but it is rampant on internet message boards and is often thrown around as a ‘cure all’.  Read more about it here.

Remember, you shouldn’t have to strip your diapers all the time.  If you’re needing to strip for any reason more than every 3 months or so, it’s time to look at changing your wash routine to be more effective.  A simple, effective wash routine should minimize or eliminate the need to strip in the first place.  And PLEASE make sure you are using a good quality detergent in the correct amount recommended on the package for the size of your load to wash your dirty diapers.  And as usual.  Contact us if you have questions.