Washing Wool Covers (Updated)

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Since I mentioned wool diaper covers in my post on toddler cloth diapering a couple of weeks ago, I thought it might be a good idea to write an updated post about how I wash them.

Spot Treating Stains

Wet the wool with warm water, and add a small drop of wool wash (such as Ecover Delicate Wash or Unicorn Fibre Wash) to the stain.

Using your index finger and thumb, gently pinch the soap into the stitches of the wool. (Do not rub, this will cause felting.)

Let sit for approximately 15 mins, then rinse well, and repeat if necessary.

Washing Wool

Fill a bowl or sink with lukewarm water, and add a few squirts of the wool wash. I use my hand to swish around the water to create suds.

Turn the wool inside out, add to the bowl, and let soak for 10-15 mins. Come back a couple of times and swish it around a bit during this soak.

Rinse under running water that’s the same temperature as the the water in the bowl/sink (very important, because extreme temperature changes can cause felting!)

Wash again if needed, and gently squeeze (don’t twist or wring) out the extra water after the final rinse.

Dump the soapy water and rinse the bowl or sink prior to lanolizing.



** If your child is potty-trained or your using wool over disposable diapers, you can skip this step, because you don’t need the wool to be leakproof. Skip ahead to drying the wool.

Make a lanolin mixture (emulsification):

Heat a mug or small bowl of water. Add a teaspoon of solid lanolin and a few squirts of wool wash or baby wash. Stir until the water turns milky white.

Or you can skip all of that, and use E-Muls Pre-Emulsified Solid Lanolin, which is lanolin that’s already emulsified for you!

Refill your bowl or sink with warm water. (I actually use a gallon sized Ziploc bag for easy clean up!)

Add your lanolin mixture or E-Muls (following the instructions on the bottle). The water should turn cloudy.

Put your clean, rinsed wool in the bowl/sink/Ziploc bag, and soak for at least 30 mins. I tend to do it overnight, but only because I forget about it. Haha

You do not need to rinse following the lanolin soak.

Dump the lanolin water out (preferably outside, as it can clog pipes over time).

Drying Wool


After the wool has soaked in lanolin (or been rinsed completely, if you’re skipping the lanolin step), squeeze out the extra water, and roll in a towel or add to a SPIN ONLY cycle in your washer to lessen drying time.

Lay wool flat to dry in a well ventilated area, preferably on something like a sweater drying rack that will allow air to circulate around the wool. Turn the wool occasionally (front, back, inside out) as it’s drying. Do not dry directly in the sun or over a heater.

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The World of Wool: Potty Training Edition

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In my last post, I mentioned that we are no longer using cloth diapers. However, I did hang on to the majority of our wool shorties because they’re great for added protection over undies while in the potty training phase. (Plus, they’re so pretty!)

There are many different brands of wool in various price ranges, but there are two brands that I like more than others. For knits, my favorite is Sloomb, and for interlock, I prefer Wild Coconut Wear.

So, what’s the difference between knits and interlock?

Knits are softer and more delicate than interlock. They must be handwashed and lanolized, and can be easily felted if not cared for properly. Most people in the wool community consider felting to be a bad thing, but some moms prefer it because it’s denser and more absorbent, therefore “bulletproof” when it comes to leaks.

Interlock is generally felted before hand, which makes it very durable, while still being relatively soft and stretchy. It can be washed by hand, or in the washing machine on a wool cycle.

I love the softness of knits, but I do find myself reaching for interlock more often with a toddler!

If you’re child is in the beginning stages of potty training, you will need something more absorbent than regular underwear between them and the wool, like Super Undies training pants. For more experienced potty-ers, wool shorties can be worn directly over underwear to catch small leaks and protect your floor/bed/couch. The stretchiness of the wool makes it easy for a toddler to pull them up and down themselves, as opposed to pants with snaps, buttons, and zippers.


Read more about The World of Wool is these posts – Part 1: My New-Found Love and Part 2: Washing Your Wool Diaper Covers.

{I am an affiliate blogger for Kelly’s Closet. This post contains affiliate links that support this blog. Please read my disclosure policy for more information.}

The World of Wool – Part 2: Washing Your Wool Diaper Covers

A couple of days ago, I posted about my new-found love of wool diaper covers.  We’ve had our covers for a couple of weeks now, and I just washed them for the first time using several products you can find at my favorite cloth diaper store, Kelly’s Closet! (Links to products in this post are affiliate links, which help support the blog!)

I prefer to hand wash mine, but Kelly’s Closet has some wonderful instructions on washing wool in the washer! *Remember- you only have to wash and lanolize again once it starts to smell like pee (you know the smell – ammonia, like a cat litter box…ugh!) or if it gets soiled (ie: pooped on). You can go weeks without washing and lanolizing!*

20130719_234315 - supplies

  • Bucket or Bowl
  • Small plastic container with lid
  • Lanolin
  • Wool Wash (bar or soap)
  • Baby Wash Soap (any brand will do)
  • Wool Cover(s)

2013-07-19 13 - washwool

  • Fill your bucket/bowl with lukewarm water just enough so it will cover the Wool.
  • Take your Wool Cover and swish it around in the bucket/bowl.
  • Grab your wool wash (bar or soap). If using a bar, apply in areas that need most attention. (I have a tummy sleeper, so I focus on the front and legs of the cover.) If you are using a wool soap, add a small amount (depending on water amount and how many wools you are washing) prior to adding your wool cover(s) to the bucket/bowl.
  • Swish your wool around in the bucket/bowl, and let it sit and soak for 30 minutes or more.
  • Come back after the time has passed, and drain out the water. Most wool washes don’t require you to rinse!
  • Refill bucket/bowl back up with fresh lukewarm water.
  • Grab the small plastic container and lid and fill it with VERY HOT water.
  • Add 1 peasize of lanolin (1 per cover) and 1 squirt of baby soap to the plastic container, then put the lid on and shake it really well, so it dissolves. (Note – I recommend using a small spoon or other utensil to do this, rather than your hands. I had lanolin all over my fingers that I could not get off!)
  • Add this mixture to your bowl/bucket that is filled with lukewarm water.
  • Put your wool back in the bowl/bucket and squish around, then let sit for an hour or more.
  • Come back after the time has passed, and drain out water and remove wool.
  • Lay flat to dry
  • By the next day, your wool will be ready to use again!

{I am an affiliate blogger for Kelly’s Closet. This post contains affiliate links that support this blog. Please read my disclosure policy for more information.}

The World of Wool – Part 1: My New-Found Love

(Some links to products in this post are affiliate links, which help support the blog!)

For a long time, I was nervous about venturing in to the world of wool. So many cloth diapering mamas I knew would rave about it, but it just seemed like SO MUCH WORK!

Then, all of our nighttime diaper options became ineffective. Leaks everywhere, multiple sheet changes…so we resorted to using disposables at night again. The leaks were contained! And THEN…

One morning I came in to Little Man’s room to get him ready for the day, and HE WAS NOT WEARING A DIAPER! Awesome. (Luckily, the bedding was still clean and dry!)

So, I decided to give wool a try. I could always resell them if I didn’t like them, right? (Benefit 13546353 to cloth diapers!)

Let me tell you…everything I previously thought about wool is WRONG! I LOVE IT! These covers fit like a glove, we have had NO LEAKS!


(Sorry for the dark picture – he would run away whenever he saw the flash…lol)

The wool we’re currently using is a work-at-home mom brand called Chelory. I use her wool-in-two cover, with a night-solution insert and a wool doubler underneath. It works fantastically for us overnight!

If you already have fitteds and are just looking for wool covers to try, Sustainablebabyish (aka: Sloomb) makes very popular covers, shorties, and longies in gorgeous colors!

A bonus of the shorties and longies? They are both a cover AND pants – you don’t need an extra cover in between!

Image via Kelly's Closet and Sustainablebabyish

Image via Kelly’s Closet and Sustainablebabyish

Some of you may be looking at the prices in shock, but keep in mind that you probably only need 3-4 covers, making wool a very economical choice! As long as the wool is not soiled or stinky – it doesn’t have to be washed after every wear!

Next time – how to wash your wool diapers!

{I am an affiliate blogger for Kelly’s Closet. This post contains affiliate links that support this blog. Please read my disclosure policy for more information.}

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