Realistic Routines: How Many Clothes Will My Baby Need & How Often Will I Need to Wash Them?

So, you’re pregnant, and you have a bit of an inkling that your home life is about to change. Yes, you’re correct. In so many wonderful ways, home life will never be the same again. There will be more laughter, more smiles, more silly faces, more fart jokes, and much more love. There will also be more washing. We want to set you up for success. As staunch advocates for the environment, we want to help everyone have everything they need and nothing they don’t and to be able to take care of those things in the most efficient, sustainable way possible. We’ll lay out for you precisely what you’ll need, and what you can expect—chores-wise.

Baby wearing playsuit, cardigan, black bonnet and socks with moon prints sleeping in moses basket covered with blanket

Every family is unique.

Now, allow us a little caveat right at the start, every baby is different, and so too is every parent’s tolerance for mess and scruffiness. Some lucky parents are sent a content little bubba who keeps all their mess inside their nappy, digests their food with ease and is more into music than muddy puddles. Others find milk and food coming back to say hi a second time, and the dreaded poo-splosions are common occurrences, or they are blessed with a curious little one that seems to learn to open the fridge and empty the contents onto themselves and the surrounding area surprisingly early!

And just as babies vary, so too do parents. Some switch to a fresh onesie after the first little dribble, while others opt for red t-shirts because they know their happy little thing will spend most of the day covered in strawberry puree or Bolognese anyway. Some of us find the time, setting, and inclination for pegging each little jacket smartly out in the sunshine to dry and sanitise, while others have to squeeze the washing into the rare moments when they’re not cooking, working or just engaging in general child-wrangling.

The fact that you’re here with us at Organic Zoo suggests that you are a clever, conscious parent who is taking the time to consider just what will be right for your family. You likely care as deeply about our beautiful planet as we do. Let us talk to you a little while about why we think opting for organic is worth your while.

Working organic living into your routine.

Organic clothing is gentler on the environment. It keeps harmful fertilisers and pesticides out of the equation—out of the waterways, soil and air, and away from your little one. It does mean that fibres are slower and more labour-intensive to produce, but this creates more work in healthy, safe environments for farmers and textile workers. Careful consideration of the factors involved in creating a garment generally means creating sturdy, high-quality, hard-wearing clothing that will stand up to the rigours of daily washing and last much longer than a hastily created conventional piece.

In an earlier article, we broke down exactly what items of clothing and how many of each you’ll need. You can head to “Everything You'll Need To Wrap Your Baby In Organic” to get the shopping list. There, you’ll find a breakdown of what you’ll need to get your baby from birth to three months. With this set of tools in your arsenal, you’ll be well prepared to have your baby snuggly and warm. Some parents will find they put the whole collection through the wash every other day. Others will find they could get through the best part of a week with what they have in stock. As we said, babies vary.

Pile of baby laundry in beige and brown tones, black bodysuit with white moon print hanging on cradle

Let’s do the washing.

The necessity of washing will often be guided by the stain itself. A nappy leak will be an instant red card, clothing changed, and put into a hot wash. Other messes require a little more personal judgement. A milky dribble will leave a little white mark, which will bother some parents and not others. One thing to know though, is if there are no visible marks on a baby’s clothes, they really don’t need washing (unless there’s some overpowering but invisible smell, of course!!). Babies don’t sweat much, so if their clothes look clean, it’s perfectly fine to pop them back in the drawer for next time.

It’s important to minimise the amount of washing you have to do, and not just to save your sanity! We recommend you launder your washable organic baby clothes with non-toxic, organic laundry liquid or powder at 30 degreee. While less than its conventional counterpart, even organic laundry liquid has environmental impacts in its creation and shipping, and also it is not free! So, by cutting down on the number of loads of washing, you’ll be minimising the impact of the soap, the amount of water used, the money spent, and the time spent washing, hanging, and folding! And while our clothes are all made to be washed and washed and washed, everything experiences wear and tear, so the less you wash a pair of dungarees or sweater, the longer it’ll be just like new.

We want your baby to be warm, snug, and clean, but at the same time, we don’t want you to feel burdened with the weight of household chores. (As one of the o~z team calls it, tackling Mount Washington!) Families minimising washing across the globe will have a marked impact on the environment, less water wasted, less energy spent running washing machines, less chemicals (organic or otherwise) flowing down the drain. Raising your little one with consideration for the environmental impact of your choices is a rewarding challenge that will have positive ripple effects for your community and future generations to come.

We're Organic Zoo


Hi, I’m Paulina the owner and creator of Organic Zoo. A children’s clothing business inspired by the freedom of my childhood and the simple joy of living with less.

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Girl stood wearing Organic Zoo maker skirt and terracotta boxy t-shirt