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Is Trader Joe’s Laundry Detergent Safe for Babies? (Answered)

Is Trader Joe’s Laundry Detergent Safe for Babies

When you have a new family member in the house, it’s only natural to be very cautious, and laundry is an area that many new parents are asking questions about. With that in mind, is Trader Joe’s laundry detergent safe for babies?

If you’re worried, Trader Joe’s ‘Free and Clear’ detergent is a hypoallergenic offering that contains no dyes, optical brighteners, fragrance, phthalates, or phosphates. It is also pH balanced and biodegradable, so as far detergents go this is an excellent option for babies.

You might not necessarily need it, however, so let’s take a closer look at babies, detergent, and Trader’s Joes liquid detergent in particular so that we can give you a better idea of what you need to know.

Is Trader Joe’s Laundry Detergent Safe for Baby Clothes?

Yes, Trader Joe’s laundry detergent is going to be safe for most babies, and the safest is typically going to be their “Free and Clear” variety, which is designed to contain no fragrances or dyes, no optical brighteners, no phosphates or phthalates, and which is hypoallergenic to boot!

It’s good stuff and a 50 fluid ounce bottle is good for 50 laundry loads, so you can wash your baby’s clothing in a liquid detergent that is going to be much milder on your baby’s skin and which isn’t going to overpower their nose with a strong fragrance.

Just keep in mind that with milder detergent formulas, particularly messy clothing may occasionally need a second cycle, or you could even wash the clothing in regular detergent and then again with Joe’s so that tougher stains may still be dealt with effectively, but without worry of lingering scents or chemicals.

We recommend giving it a try for yourself to see if it will be a good fit for your baby’s clothing needs. It’s definitely up to the task, but as with any hypoallergenic, milder detergents you may find that a second wash is needed for the worst of stains and messes.

Do Babies Need Special Laundry Detergent?

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This is a topic that many parents will argue about, but when you really get down to the core of it babies are usually going to be fine with regular detergent being used on their clothing, provided that it is liquid.

Powdered detergents don’t always dissolve properly, but with liquid you can thoroughly clean the clothing and even give it a second rinse cycle in water only if you are worried that there might still be residue.

There are certainly exceptions – babies do have sensitive skin and some more so than others – although unless it’s a very severe allergy, it may not even manifest for some time.

The most common baby allergies are not detergents or pollens, but foods such as shellfish, peanuts, or even wheat on occasion.

Fragrances can be a problem if they are too strong, but typically scent and seasonal allergies are something that a child develops over time with exposure to the allergen.

That’s why parents and older kids may experience seasonal allergies, but the baby will be just fine – they simply haven’t been exposed to enough of it yet.

That said, if you are simply worried, you can always go with a liquid detergent that is dye-free, fragrance-free, and which utilized milder chemicals in its composition and that’s perfectly okay too – just make sure that it is actually cleaning the clothing. Otherwise, it won’t be the detergent that you have to worry about!

To check the current price and availability of Laundry Detergents for Baby Clothes, click here to view the selection on Amazon.

Is Trader Joe’s Laundry Detergent Chemical Free?

No detergent is really chemical free, as you need to keep in mind that even with ‘all-natural ingredients’, you are always using some form of chemical or chemical derivatives.

What we CAN say about Trader Joe’s Free and Clear laundry detergent is that it does not have chemicals in it that have been identified as problematical, such as potassium hydroxide phosphates which can cause skin irritation in some babies and even some adults with very sensitive skin.

The formula is hypoallergenic and it also leaves out dyes and fragrances, so that it will be much milder on your child’s skin and you won’t need to deal with overpowering scents that might be harder on a developing respiratory system.

It also contains no phosphates and one important fact for many parents is that it doesn’t have phthalates, either. Phthalates are chemicals that are designed to enhance the durability of plastics and these can cause damage to kidneys, lungs, the liver, and the reproductive system over time.

All in all, for a dye-free, fragrance-free, and extremely mild hypoallergenic detergent, Trader Joe’s Free and Clear is actually an excellent choice for babies if you are worried about the scents or irritation to their new and sensitive skin or even for allergies that you might have as an adult!

Is Trader Joe’s Laundry Detergent Scent Free?

Trader Joe’s ‘standard’ laundry detergent DOES have a scent and that scent is lavender. If you are looking for scent-free detergent, then you will simply need to purchase their ‘Free and Clear’ line of hypoallergenic, fragrance and dye-free liquid detergent.

It is specially formulated to leave out phosphates and harsh alkalines that come in many modern detergents, while also leaving out brighteners, dyes, and fragrances that might be too strong or overpowering for sensitive adults, young kids, or infants.

What Are the Safest Laundry Detergents for Babies?

Most babies will be perfectly fine with a standard liquid detergent, although if it is scented then you’ll want to make sure that your baby doesn’t seem to be distressed by the smell.

Babies are notoriously messy, after all, and so you want to make sure that the detergent you select is actually cleaning the clothes thoroughly.

For babies with sensitive skin or who seem averse to fragrances of any kind, liquid detergents such as Trader Joe’s ‘Free and Clear’ offer a robust cleaning formula that doesn’t include dyes or fragrances and also leaves out some common chemicals that have been known to potentially contribute to health issues.

Most specifically, it leaves out alkaline phosphates and plastic-hardening phthalates, so when you are picking your detergent out you can look for Trader Joe’s or another vendor’s detergents that do not contain phthalates or phosphates and after that, you can look for fragrance-free varieties that fit the bill if your baby doesn’t like the detergent’s scent.

Final Thoughts

Today we’ve addressed the question ‘is Trader Joe’s detergent safe for babies’ and while it’s standard variety will be safe for most, they also provide a ‘Free and Clear’ formula that is even safer. It has no scent, doesn’t employ optical whiteners, it’s pH balanced, and even biodegradable.

Best of all, it is free of phosphates and phthalates, and even hypoallergenic in the bargain. This definitely fits the ‘baby safe’ profile of more expensive brands so we would have to say that the ‘Free and Clear’ formula fits the bill quite nicely.

Take a look at it next time that you are shopping and compare it to your favorite brand. We think that you’ll find that with this detergent, as with many Trader Joe’s offerings, you’re getting a quality product at an excellent price!


Shane is a fitness enthusiast who also has a passion for trying and cooking new foods. His favorite stores to shop at include Trader Joe's, Wholefoods Market, Sprouts, Stater Brothers, and Target.

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