Sunday Fabrics: Removing Common Stains from Crib Sheets

As with the rest of our bamboo sateen items, your Bamboo Crib Sheets are best washed and dried gently. Being gentle with your crib sheets isn’t just a question of aesthetics or durability — keeping them soft and minimising clumping or pilling also helps your little one stay comfortable in bed.

That said, crib sheets come with a whole new set of considerations too. From making sure your products are safe for sensitive skin to cleaning baby’s spills and stains thoroughly, here’s our guide to caring for your crib sheets.

The basics of stain removal

  • Rinse off any residue by holding your sheets under running water
  • Soak your sheets overnight or for a few hours before washing
  • Pre-treat stains with a small dab of laundry detergent or a natural stain remover, like distilled white vinegar and baking powder
  • Line dry in the sun where possible. The sun will naturally bleach stains and help to disinfect the fabric

Separate fabrics with different stains before soaking, treating and washing.

Separate stained fabrics

Try to separate stains that may carry more bacteria, like diaper leaks and vomit, to prevent them from spreading to the rest of your baby’s laundry.

Different stains may also call for different laundry settings, like cold water for most protein stains, and warm water for urine stains.

Protein stains: treat with cold water

Many stains that might end up on your crib sheets are protein-based, such as spit and drool, milk spills, baby formula, poop, and most food stains. When rinsing and soaking any protein-based stains, avoid using warm water, which can cause stains to set. Instead, rinse as soon as possible with cold running water.

Although it’s best to catch stains when they’re fresh, that’s not always possible. If you spot an older stain, let it sit with your stain remover sit for a few hours or overnight, before gently agitating the residue with your fingers or a soft brush.

In a rush? Leave your stained sheets to soak before washing, especially if you can't launder them straight away.

After soaking, let a the stain sit with a small dab of laundry liquid or a natural stain remover you have on hand.

Urine stains: use a two-step pre-treatment and warm water

Urine stains can be tricky. If the stain has dried, create a pre-treatment solution by diluting a tablespoon of ammonia in at least 1 cup of cold water. Alternatively, try a tablespoon of distilled white vinegar or half a cup of baking soda instead of ammonia. Soak for 30 minutes or longer, then rinse and wash with warm water.

Caught the stain while it’s fresh? Rinsing and laundering as normal should do the trick. After the wash cycle, check that the stain is completely removed if you’re tumble drying — the heat from the dryer can set the stain.

If you can’t treat and launder your sheets immediately, soak them in cold water until you can — letting urine stains build up can lead to mildew.

Oil stains: apply an absorbent powder before washing

This applies to greasy stains like baby oil, creams and balms. Treat by covering the stained area with an absorbent powder, like baby powder, baking powder, borax, corn starch or flour. Leave on for 15 minutes to an hour, and repeat if the residue remains.

Using gentle laundry products helps your bamboo sheets stay comfortable and longer-lasting, and keeps baby safe from any potential irritants and allergens.

Laundering your crib sheets

Stick to a 30 or 40°C wash: It might be tempting to wash your crib sheets at higher temperatures to disinfect them and get all the stains out, but 30-40 degrees is sufficient to clean your sheets. In fact, hot water is more likely to make stains set!

Opt for a gentle, baby-friendly laundry liquid: Babies' skin tends to be more sensitive compared to adults. Opt for gentle liquid detergents that are hypoallergenic and free from fragrances and dyes. We’re #TeamLiquid because liquids mix well, even in cold water. This prevents the detergent from clumping in the fabric and leaving flaky deposits that can irritate your baby’s skin.

As always, avoid using fabric softeners and products containing benzoyl peroxide, chlorine bleach or alpha hydroxy acids. These additives aren’t necessary to keep your sheets soft or clean, and contain irritants that might remain after rinsing.


Have a question about our crib sheets? We're happy to help. Just drop us an email or Instagram DM!

Incredibly soft and hypoallergenic, our Crib Sheets don't compromise on either comfort or safety for your little one. Rotate different shades with our Bamboo Crib Sheets in sets of 2, featuring crib sheet pairs at a better price.

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