Wool is so simple to use and care for!
Most of the time when you change your baby you will not need to change or launder your diaper cover. Simply replace the diaper and re-use the cover or rotate covers letting the most recently used cover air out between changes. You will notice that your covers are rarely wet and do not smell, that is because wool is self-cleansing and naturally antibacterial, awesome!
About once a week (or if soiled) you will need to hand wash your wool covers. This is really simple and actually quite enjoyable-you can even involve your children in helping with the hand washing-for us Wednesday is wash day!
I boost my lanolin every time I wash, because, why not?! To wash and lanolin I add a small amount of lanolin to a mug (about 1-2 tsp. depending on how many covers I'm washing) with 1/2-1 oz. of liquid wool wash (we recommend Unicorn Baby Beyond Fibre Wash). Add hot (nearly boiling) water to the mug OR add tap water and microwave for 1 minute. Stir vigorously so that the warm soapy water completely emulsifies the lanolin (there shouldn't be any clumps!). Start filling your sink or wash basin with warm water. Gradually add the mug of lanolin/soap to the wash basin as it fills. Then add your diaper covers and swish around letting the soap and lanolin get evenly distributed. You can now leave your woolies in the bath for several hours, swishing them occasionally, or overnight. I prefer to start my wash in the morning, leave them throughout the day, wring them before bed and hang to dry overnight. This way all my covers are ready to go the following morning. To dry your covers, gently squeeze the water out of your covers (I like to squeeze them and then roll them up in a clean dry towel to get out the extra drips) and hang to dry. Some of our customers have also had success using the spin cycle on their washing machine to wring the water out of their wool before hanging it up.
What about machine washing?
Occasional cool/gentle or wool cycle machine washing is ok. Hand washing is recommended and will certainly extend the life and beauty of your prints. For best results machine wash in cool water on a gentle/wool cycle and hang or lay flat to dry. PLEASE do not wash your wool covers on hot or on a sanitation cycle! Washing in very hot water or on high agitation WILL result in further felting of the wool and substantial shrinking will occur. Tumble drying will also result in further felting and is best avoided! Once wool has felted it cannot be un-felted, so machine wash at your own risk! ;)
Prepping your snap-in diapers & boosters (sherpa and hemp):
Our organic sherpa and hemp snap-in diapers and boosters can be machine washed and dried on any setting. They should be pre-washed warm with a small amount of detergent and tumble dried at least once before use and will continue to get more absorbent through the first few washings. Pre-washing removes natural plant oils that are present in all organic fabrics that can inhibit absorbency. We have found that the best system for our family is to thoroughly spray soiled diapers with a diaper spayer at changing, machine washing with the following settings: cold rinse + warm wash + cold rinse and then tumble drying low. We LOVE Unicorn Baby Beyond Clean for washing diapers. It is by far the best diaper detergent we have come across in 10 years of cloth diapering!
Covers are not pre-lanolized.
When you first receive your wool cover(s) you will want to lanolize them to make them waterproof. It sometimes takes TWO lanolizings to get wool interlock to absorb its full compliment of lanolin. After the initial lanolizing(s) you will want to re-lanolize at least once a month or you can do a lanolin boost with your weekly wash, which is what we do!