Best non-toxic stain remover for baby clothes

Most stain removers contain harsh chemicals and are terrible for your health and our planet. They aren’t a good choice at all, especially for your baby’s clothes. If you’re seeking non-toxic alternatives, kudos. Your baby deserves only the best!

Let’s explore some of the best eco-friendly, plant-based options to clean and remove stains from baby clothes.

Quick links:

Bokleen Back Out


Puracy Natural


Smart Sheep

Baking soda

White vinegar

Lemon juice

Club soda

Hydrogen peroxide

Table salt

If you’re seeking a non-toxic stain remover that is effective and convenient, buy our stain stick. This eco-friendly and compact solution contains only the safest plant-based products, ensuring your baby's clothes are treated with care. 

“I used this to also get older stains out of his smaller baby clothes before donating them and the lady asked if all this was “brand new” I told ER her no but was just recently washed! Thank you!!! Don’t change a thing.” —Laurajean, Amazon purchaser (five stars)

Detergent strips

Why do baby clothes need special laundry care?

Babies make a lot of mess. Whether it is milk, food, poop, or any other common type of stain—you need to stain-removal technique that is strong yet gentle enough for their delicate skin.

Babies have much more sensitive skin than adults, so their clothes require laundry products without chemicals and fragrances that could cause skin irritation. Brighteners, dyes, and synthetic perfumes are irritators and pose health risks. Avoid them!

These chemicals can also damage baby’s soft clothes. Cotton, fleece, knits, and woven fabrics need special care, make sure not to use high heat during washing and drying.

What are the best non-toxic stain removers for baby clothes?

Stains on baby clothes meet their match with non-toxic removers. Safe, plant-based ingredients dissolve messes without harsh chemicals. 

Here are our picks for the 5 best stain removers free from harmful chemicals, perfect for your baby’s delicate clothes and sensitive skin:

  1. Biokleen Bac-Out stain and odor remover
  2. BuggyLove organic stain remover
  3. Puracy Natural laundry stain remover
  4. Babyganics laundry stain remover spray
  5. Smart Sheep stain stick

Biokleen Bac-Out

Biokleen Bac-Out is a stain remover spray with a powerful enzymatic formula that effectively removes tough stains while combating unpleasant smells, leaving your baby’s clothes fresh and clean.

Biokleen Bac-Out uses natural bacillus enzymes to effectively break down and eliminate tough baby poop stains. The natural enzymes in Bac-Out work to lift the stain and eliminate odor-causing bacteria from baby clothes, providing a thorough and deep clean without any toxic chemicals. 

Bac-Out is certified by Cradle to Cradle and contains biodegradable, cruelty-free ingredients. This safe stain remover spray is also free from artificial fragrances, chlorine, and phosphates, making it gentle and safe for your little one’s skin.


BuggyLove stain remover spray relies on certified organic ingredients like Celtic sea salt, seaweed, lavender flowers, and witch hazel bark. Sweet orange essential oils provide a light, pleasant scent.

You can spot-clean stains without fully washing the clothes afterwards. Simply apply to the soiled area and let dry - ideal for strollers, car seats, and on-the-go accidents.

BuggyLove earned an "A" rating from the Environmental Working Group for its safety, even for sensitive skin. It contains 12 ingredients rated A through C by EWG's standards.

Puracy Natural

Puracy Natural stain remover spray contains only plant-based ingredients. With its biodegradable formula, it is gentle yet powerful. It contains no harsh chemicals, artificial fragrances, chlorine or other potentially harmful ingredients that could irritate sensitive skin.

At the core of Puracy stain remover is a powerful enzyme blend that breaks down and lifts even tough stains caused by baby accidents. The enzymatic action can tackle both fresh stains as well as set-in messes. This makes it effective on a wide array of stains.


Babyganics stain remover spray has no chlorine, parabens, phthalates, sulfates, fragrances, or dyes.

The formula relies on plant-derived and other thoughtfully chosen ingredients to help lift tough stains like spit-up on baby clothes. It aims to remove stains safely and effectively. The product is not tested on animals.

Smart Sheep

“It works, easily and fast. Some of the most difficult stains and especially set-in-stains can be a nightmare. I have not found any stain it did not work on. I'm sold!” —WhatADog, Amazon purchaser (five stars)

Smart Sheep stain stick is a convenient and eco-friendly alternative to traditional spray and gel stain removers. It is a compact and portable solution for treating stubborn stains on baby clothes that you can take anywhere with you.

Our stain stick’s plant-based formula lifts stains with minimal time and elbow grease required. It is gentle for all types of fabrics and for the planet. Stain sticks are convenient and simple to use, and they can save the quality and appearance of your favorite garments.

This effective stain remover is ideal for tackling the variety of stains babies commonly create, including breast milk, baby formula, grass, and other typical baby stains.

“This really works great. I use it on some stains on the kids clothes and I got them out. They were mostly grass, mud and grease stains. I think this is a great product. I look forward to using it more on stains and I'm coming out. I was pleased with the product. I would recommend it.” —Harley Girl, Amazon purchaser (five stars)

Stain stick

What should I look for in a stain remover for baby’s clothes?

When choosing a stain remover for your baby's clothes, here are some key things to look for:

  • Focus on natural, safe ingredients. Look for plant-based stain fighters like coconut oil, citrus extracts, and enzyme-based formulas. These can effectively break down and remove stains without toxic chemicals. Avoid products with artificial fragrances or dyes.
  • Avoid certain chemicals. Steer clear of stain removers containing chlorine bleach, optical brighteners, or formaldehyde. These can be irritating for babies' delicate skin. Also avoid NPEs (nonylphenol ethoxylates) and phthalates, which are hormone disruptors.
  • Look for third-party certification. Check for certifications like the EWG (Environmental Working Group) Verified mark or EPA safer choice. This means the product meets stringent standards for human health and the environment.
  • Fragrance-free is ideal. Babies have sensitive nasal passages, so fragrance-free is best. If a stain remover must be scented, make sure it uses only essential oils or natural extracts. Avoid synthetic fragrances.

Natural alternatives for baby clothes

When it comes to keeping baby's clothes fresh and stain-free, natural alternatives are a good and effective choice. Harsh chemicals found in many conventional cleaners and detergents can irritate sensitive baby skin.

Luckily, there are several effective, non-toxic ingredients you likely already have at home.

  1. Baking soda
  2. White vinegar
  3. Lemon juice
  4. Club soda
  5. Hydrogen peroxide
  6. Table salt

Baking soda

Baking soda is a natural cleaning powerhouse. Its alkaline composition helps break down stains and odors without any added perfumes or dyes.

Make a paste by mixing 3 parts baking soda with 1 part water. Apply the paste to the stain and gently rub it in. Allow it to sit for at least 30 minutes before washing as usual. The abrasive texture of baking soda helps lift set-in stains.

White vinegar

White vinegar is a natural acid that works to cut through grease, sweat stains, and residue from formula or baby food.

Mix together 1 cup of vinegar with 3 cups of water. Transfer to a spray bottle and spritz directly onto stains. Let sit for 10-15 minutes before washing. The acetic acid in vinegar can dissolve stubborn stains.

Lemon juice

Lemon juice contains natural citric acid that can help lift stains and brighten whites. Squeeze fresh lemon juice onto light stains and place the clothing in direct sunlight for up to 1 hour before washing.

For tougher stains, boil 1 cup water with 2 tablespoons of lemon juice. Remove from heat and immerse stained baby clothes for 30 minutes prior to regular washing.

Club soda

The carbonation and salts in plain club soda make it a great pretreatment for various types of stains. Pour club soda directly onto stains and allow it to bubble for 5-10 minutes before laundering as normal. The carbonation in the soda helps loosen clinging stain particles.

Hydrogen peroxide

As a mild bleach, hydrogen peroxide can whiten clothes and remove stubborn organic stains like blood, vomit, poop, or urine. Mix equal parts hydrogen peroxide and cold water. Apply the solution to stains, let sit for 5-10 minutes, then rinse and wash. Hydrogen peroxide naturally lifts organic stains.

Table salt

Table salt in the laundry works as a mild abrasive stain remover. It is perfect for absorbing liquids before they are set. 

Make a paste with 1 tablespoon salt and 1/4 cup hot water. Rub it gently into grease or sweat stains and let sit 15-20 minutes before washing. Rinse thoroughly.

With some experimenting, you can find the perfect natural DIY stain remover for your needs. And you'll have peace of mind knowing baby's clothes are chemical-free.

Application tips for sensitive baby clothes

Here are some tips for effectively removing stains while keeping fabric gentle on sensitive skin:

Test on a seam first

Before applying any homemade solution or natural stain remover, do a patch test on an inconspicuous area like an inside seam or shirt tag. To start, blot up the stain using a clean cloth to absorb as much of the mess as possible. Then, gently scrub the area with a soft brush to help lift the stain residue. 

Check for any discoloration or irritation. Babies have extremely sensitive skin so you want to ensure no negative reaction.

Rinse thoroughly after treating

Once you've treated a stain, rinse the fabric in cold water thoroughly before washing as usual. This prevents any residue from remaining on the clothing that could still irritate your baby's skin. Rinsing also washes away any loosened stain particles.

Consider stain type

Match your stain-busting solution to the type of stain for best results. For oil-based stains like food, breastmilk or formula, use baking soda solution or dish soap. For organic stains like spit up, urine, or blood, hydrogen peroxide works well. For fading or discoloration, lemon juice or sunlight helps brighten.

Bonus tip! If you’re dealing with protein-based stains, like egg, meat, grass, or blood stains, use only cool water! If you wash them in hot water, you can “cook” stains into the fabric.

Stain remover FAQ

What is the best stain remover for old stains on baby clothes?

The best stain remover for old stains on baby clothes is the Smart Sheep stain stick. This portable, eco-friendly stain remover is perfect for touch and stubborn old stains. Its plant-based ingredients won’t harm your baby's delicate clothes.

For a homemade solution choose a combination of hydrogen peroxide and dish soap. Mix equal parts of these two ingredients and apply the mixture directly onto the stain. Let it sit for a couple of minutes before laundering the clothing as usual. 

What is the best natural stain remover for kids' clothes?

Look for plant-based options like diluted vinegar or lemon juice for chemical-free stain removal. Vinegar's acetic acid dissolves stains while lemon juice naturally bleaches. Rub into stains, let sit, then rinse and wash clothes.

Is it OK to use Vanish on baby clothes?

Vanish contains harsh chemicals like optical brighteners, so it's best avoided for baby's delicate clothes. Instead, try soaking clothes in an oxygen bleach solution of warm water and sodium percarbonate for chemical-free stain lifting.

What is the best way for treating baby poop stains?

For dealing with tough baby poop stains, try making your own homemade stain remover. Mix equal parts water and lemon juice and apply it directly to the stained area of cloth diapers. Let it sit for 30 minutes before washing as usual. The natural acidity in the lemon juice will help break down and remove the stain.

How do you get stains out of baby clothes naturally?

Sunlight, lemon juice, club soda, and hydrogen peroxide all work to naturally lift stains. Wet the stain, apply natural treatment, let sit, then launder as usual. Always test first on a hidden seam.

Why do old baby clothes have yellow stains?

The ammonia in urine can create yellow stains over time as clothes age. For old urine stains, soak clothes in an enzymatic cleaner or natural stain remover before washing to break down stubborn residues.

What is a safe alternative to bleach for babies?

For whitening baby clothes, skip the bleach and instead soak them in lemon juice mixed with sunshine, or make a paste of baking soda and water. Both naturally brighten and remove stains without irritation.

What is the best stain remover for white clothes?

Hydrogen peroxide is one of the best stain removers for white clothes. As a bleaching agent, it helps lift discoloration and whitens fabrics. Mix equal parts hydrogen peroxide and water and apply directly to stains on white clothing. Let sit for 5-10 minutes before washing as normal.

The peroxide naturally breaks down into just oxygen and water, brightening clothes without harsh chemicals. For added whitening power, combine hydrogen peroxide with sunshine by laying stained garments out in the sun after treatment.

Further reading

Stain stick recipe you should try

Will essential oils on my dryer balls stain clothes?

What is the best laundry detergent for sensitive skin?

Laundry detergent sheets vs liquid laundry detergent—who wins?

What are the best fabric softener substitutes?

Can I use dryer balls and dryer sheets together? 

How to add essential oils to dryer balls

Do dryer balls contain toxic chemicals?