The Best Fabric Softener for Babies – Review in 2021

Best Fabric Softener for Babies

LAST UPDATED: December 26th, 2020

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One way your baby’s silky soft and delicate skin may be affected is through the fabric softener you use to clean your baby’s clothes. Softeners make clothes soft, give out that classic laundry fragrance and reduce static.

On the other hand, they do contain certain chemicals that might be harmful to your baby’s skin. We know how overwhelming it can be to choose something for your little one.

That’s why we’re here to help you find the best fabric softener for babies. We’ll also discuss some of the benefits and drawbacks of using softeners and give you an in-depth analysis of what to consider when deciding to buy softeners.

Benefits and Drawbacks of Using Softeners in Baby Clothes

Below we’re going to talk about the advantages and disadvantages of using softeners in baby clothes.

Makes Clothes Soft and Silky

If you use fabric softeners when washing your baby’s clothes, it’ll be gentler on the fibers of the fabric, which will help reduce the stiffness of the dried clothes. This will keep your baby’s clothes soft and comfortable.

Reduces Drying Time

Believe it or not, fabric softeners will actually make your clothes dry faster. It helps to reduce the amount of water that’s leftover in the clothes after the spin.

Helps Keep Breathability of Clothes

Baby clothes are made with breathable fabric as babies can’t regulate their temperatures. Since fabric softeners help to prevent the matting and damaging of cloth fibers, it cannot trap moisture, thus keeping the clothes breathable.

Fresh Laundry Smell

Fresh Laundry Smell

The only thing that can maybe compete with the new baby scent is the smell of fresh laundry. Fabric softeners will ensure that the clothes are fresher for longer.

May Contain Harmful Chemicals

Fabric softeners can cause allergic reactions to your baby’s skin because of certain chemicals in it. Usually, fragrant products do contain chemicals that are not exactly sensitive skin-friendly.

Destroy Flame-Resistant Coating

Many baby clothes are made with fabrics that are coated with flame-resistants, which is an important feature of baby clothes. And fabric softeners can damage this coating, making your child more vulnerable.

5 Best Fabric Softener for Babies

Here are the top five best fabric softeners in the market that’s appropriate for your baby’s precious skin.

Downy Ultra April Fresh Liquid Fabric Softener

Our first pick of fabric softeners will leave your baby’s clothes smelling like fresh April mornings. You can use this on your baby’s clothes, as well as her sheets, towels, and other items, and your nursery will smell like spring all year round.

You’ll get 6 bottles, each containing 34 fl. oz. of softeners. And you can easily do 40 loads of laundry with it. This Downy softener will keep your baby’s clothes soft and fresh for days.

Baby clothes need to be washed so many times, thanks to the many happy accidents with food. This softener will protect the fabric of your baby’s clothes from stretching out too much due to multiple washes. It also prevents discoloration of the clothes and prevents fuzz build-up.

And you can use Downy in any type of washing machine safely, and as it contains softening agents that are biodegradable, it’s also safe for the little one’s clothes. Just give it a shake before using and pour it according to the load.

If you’re doing large loads, pour up to the top line, and for medium loads, the bottom line dose should be enough.


  • Reduces static and wrinkles from clothes
  • The Febreze-fresh scent lasts longer
  • Can be used in both top and front-loading machines
  • Softens, and prevents fuzz in fabrics


  • ● Increases the flammability of fabric
  • Can’t use on baby’s sleepwear
  • Customer complaints about the packaging

E Method Fabric Softener, Beach Sage

If you’re environmentally conscious and want to use products that are good for the environment, then this is the one for you. The Method fabric softener is manufactured using products and ingredients that are extracted naturally and are non-toxic. That’s why they are especially good for your precious one’s clothes.

These bottles contain 53.5 fl. oz. of liquid softener in each of the 4 pack packages. And these are enough for 45 loads. Your baby is usually on your lap, and you want the clothes to be static-free. This softener will reduce the amount of static that clings on to the fabric.

The beach sage scent is the perfect balance of fragrance, which is neither too floral and nor too masculine. It’s the perfect formula that will make your house smelling fresh all year.

Another great feature is that it also prevents wrinkles in clothes, making them easier to iron. Its hypoallergenic formula for sensitive skin makes it the best fabric softener for newborn babies.

In case you’re using a high efficient machine, make sure you pour the softener in the softener dispenser, and for best results in top-loading machines, try mixing the softener with the water instead of the fabric.


  • Makes clothes soft and fluffy
  • Bottles made with recyclable materials
  • Cruelty-free
  • A fresh, natural smell


  • Liquid tends to spill while pouring in cap
  • The scent doesn’t stay long

Related Guide: Top Vacuum Cleaners for Pet Hair

Mrs.Meyer’s Clean Day Fabric Softener

We’ve all heard how true beauty lies within, well it’s particularly true for Mrs. Meyer’s Clean Day Fabric Softener. It might not stand out on the shelves of the store, but it’s one of the best fabric softeners out there.

This pack of 2 contains 32 fl. oz. of softener that’ll last you a long time. Mrs. Meyer’s claims that you only need half a cap of softener to make your clothes smell like a lavender field.

Inspired by the garden, this product contains ingredients that are derived naturally. The fresh lavender scent is from essential oils and cotton extract.

It is an excellent softener to make sure that your baby’s clothes are soft and fluffy, static, and wrinkle-free and have a natural scent. And it doesn’t contain any harmful chemicals that might cause allergy on your little one’s skin.

Moreover, this fabric softener can be used in high-efficiency washing machines as well as normal ones. And because you don’t need much for a large load of clothes, you can easily do over 50 loads with this pack of 2.


  • Made with naturally extracted ingredients
  • Softens and freshens baby clothes
  • Prevents static and wrinkles on clothes
  • A little goes a long way


  • The lavender scent might seem overpowering to some

Downy Ultra Liquid Fabric Conditioner (Fabric Softener), April Fresh, 48 Oz Smart Pouches

This 3-pack smart pouch Downy fabric softener is next on our list. The great thing about this product is the pouches they come in. They’ll save you a lot of space on the shelves, they’re easy to pour with no-spill, and they contain 48 fl oz, each of which will last you for over 160 loads of laundry.

And this Downy Ultra is especially good for baby clothes as they protect the cloth fabric from stretching and from the fuzz.

Although your baby will outgrow his clothes soon, you’ll have to wash this little messy eater’s clothes way too many times. But no need to worry as this fabric softener will protect the color of your baby’s clothes from fading away.

The freshness from using this April Fresh softener will last you for 6 weeks. Not to mention the silky soft and cozy fabric that’ll adorn your baby.


  • Smart pouches that are easy to use
  • The freshness lasts for 6 weeks
  • Compatible with both front and top-loading washing machines
  • Protects clothes from fading


  • Not usable on fleece, velour, chenille
  • Might damage the anti-flammable coating on clothes

ATTITUDE Natural Baby Fabric Softener

This last one is specially designed for baby clothes. It is produced with ingredients that are natural and is free from chemicals such as phenoxyethanol, parabens, and formaldehyde.

Attitude’s fabric softener also boasts their status of being vegan and cruelty-free. They have been certified by ECOLOGO and PETA that they’re eco-friendly. So if you worry about the planet, then you can give this one a try.

And this liquid softener is hypoallergenic, so it’s perfect for clothes for sensitive baby skin. It’ll leave your baby’s clothes soft, and free of static and wrinkles.

As it’s fragrant-free, you can also be sure there aren’t any unnecessary ingredients that can be used to make it more desirable. It also doesn’t contain any type of dye or optical brighteners.

Best used with cold water, this softener can be used in both high efficiency and standard machines. Also, to prevent spotting, you should pour it in water and not directly on the clothes.


  • Made especially for baby clothes
  • Doesn’t contain phenoxyethanol, parabens or formaldehyde
  • Hypoallergenic formula perfect for sensitive skin
  • Eco-friendly


  • No scent

What to Look for before Buying

Before you make the decision to buy a fabric softener, keep the following things in mind.


The main purpose of a fabric softener is to make your baby’s clothes soft and cozy. If a product cannot deliver that, then you need to choose one that will.

Keep in mind baby’s fabrics may also include her towels, beddings, and anything that she uses, and the softener has to be able to work on all these.

Hypoallergenic Formula

Hypoallergenic Formula

It’s better to get a softener for your baby’s clothes that have a hypoallergenic label. Babies’ skin is extra sensitive, and if their clothes contain certain chemicals, they might cause skin irritation, allergies, or rashes on your baby’s skin.

So it’s advisable to get fabric softeners that use fewer chemicals. You can also look for eco-friendly products because they are mostly made with natural ingredients, so there might be fewer chances of your baby getting allergies from it.


Another important factor is the fragrance of the softener. Since baby clothes contain everything from burp to poop, you want softener that’ll remove these bad odors and leave you with a fresh scent.

As you’ve seen from the reviews, there are many different types of fragrances that are used in fabric softeners. Choose the one you’re comfortable with and which gives you a soothing feeling.

Some softeners have a very overpowering smell, while others are milder. Some keep the clothes smelling nice and fresh for weeks while others can’t hold the freshness after a few hours.

You also need to consider the fact that it’s mostly chemicals that are used to create this fragrance. If the fabric softener is made with all-natural products, then chances are the fragrance might be light and may not last for long but might be better for your little one’s soft skin.

Water Absorbency

Water Absorbency

Fabric softeners tend to decrease the water absorbency of towels and other clothes, so it’s possible that after using certain fabric softeners, your baby’s towels or cloth nappies will retain too much moisture and may not dry well. So, you need to get a softener that has a good score on water absorbency.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

Here we have the most commonly asked queries regarding the best fabric softeners;

What is the difference between fabric softener and detergents?

Fabric softeners are used in the rinse cycle to make your clothes soft and fresh. Detergents are used to rid the clothes of dirt and grime.

How do I use a fabric softener?

All you have to do is pour it in the water or in the dispenser during the rinse cycle of the wash. Do not put it during the wash cycle; otherwise, it won’t have any effect on the clothes.

What happens if I don’t use fabric softeners?

Fabric softeners help make clothes soft, reduce stretching, fading, and fuzz. If you don’t use a softener, your baby’s clothes will wear away too quickly. They might start looking like old clothes after a few washes.

Do fabric softeners make clothes more flammable?

Most fabric softeners, if not all, will damage the anti-flammable
coating of your baby’s clothes to some extent.

How much fabric softener should I use for my baby’s clothes?

It depends on the model, and the number of clothes you’re planning to wash. The softeners usually come with instructions on how much to use and how to measure.


Choosing the correct fabric softener is an important decision as it will be used on your little one’s clothes. Always do your research and ask for help when making a decision.

Go over our reviews and buying guide to find out what’s the best fabric softener for babies and baby’s clothes, and your whole house will be immersed in fresh fragrance.

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