Removing Mildew Stains from Baby Clothes

I have a 3 month old who spits up a lot and as often as I change her clothes or put bibs on her etc, she is constantly wet by her neck and chest. I let her clothes air dry after removing them from her before putting them in the hamper. Recently, however, her clothing started to get moldy up by the neck. I now have one cotton, one terry and one velour stretchy of hers that is no longer wearable.


I tried soaking these outfits in vinegar before washing but saw no difference. I also tried rubbing some oxiclean solution on before washing but that did not do it either. Any suggestions? I am looking forward to a response on how to best remove this mold (and how to prevent mold from growing on other outfits.) Thank you!

By Sima

October 24, 20070 found this helpful

wonder if it would help to spray them with stain remover as you take them off her then as they airdry as you say before putting into hamper. maybe that would help wash cleaner when you wash them. if the items are whites maybe the stain remover sparys with bleach would deter the mildew set in while they are setting awaiting laundry wash later. not sure. just an idea.

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October 24, 20070 found this helpful

Use the Oxiclean (or a cheaper generic version from a dollar store like I do) again. A pair of my toddler's pants was wet and was accidentally left at the bottom of a hamper. When I found them, I thought they were ruined. But I soaked them in a strong solution of hot water and Oxiclean about three or four times over a period of two days. It worked and my toddler is now wearing those pants and you would never know they had had mildew like that.

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October 25, 20070 found this helpful

Just a few thoughts to start with....

1. I've heard you can freeze old books to stop mold/mildew growt (they can't survive freezing temperatures), so your little outfits may need to go into the freezer for a while!

2. Lysol & other disenfectant-type sprays or liquids KILLS mold/mildew. You might try that, leave it for a while, then wash to see if you have more luck once it's "dead."

3. Depending upon the color of the garments, you'll probably HAVE to use bleach to remove stains. I think it actually KILLS the growth too & in order to remove stubborn residue, it may take bleach--try the kind for colors or the more gentle oxi & you may have to soak & repeat like previous poster did. Oxi WILL bleach out colors if you let it sit too long! There's always my favorite old trick--lay it outdoors in the sunlight & appy lemon juice over & over until it's gone!

Sorry I don't have anything surefire, just a few ideas based on what I've heard.

Also, I got a mesh bag of LAVA ROCKS years ago at a linen store that's supposed to absorb moisture--can't say if it really works well as it's just hanging in my basement, but something like this or charcoal in a mesh bag at the bottom of your laundry hamper might help with hamper problems.

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October 25, 20070 found this helpful

Bleach kills mildew. You will probably need to soak these items in a weak bleach-water solution, even the colors, and then launder them. That is the only thing I know that will kill mildew.

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October 26, 20070 found this helpful

I'd be VERY careful with using the OxiClean with your baby. It has nearly killed me and a friend of mine. It's very risky to the skin. Also, keep in mind that mold and mildew don't survive well in lemon juice, but I'd be more likely to use a med. strong bleach/hot water solution and double rinsing in apple cider vinegar/water, until clean.

I'd concentrate also on just WHY your baby is so wet around the neck. Sounds like the room temp and clothing aren't matching? Try a little corn starch sprinkled around the neck and less clothing there? Or, I'd adjust the temp to suit her body needs, using a small fan, if necessary.

It takes practice to get things right, but you can do it if you stop and think it through. It is often just common sense. Keep in mind that your own body temp heats the baby up, so try allowing the baby to lie down more in one position and another, on white terrycloth towling that can also be lightly bleached.

The mold is likely coming from the foods that aren't washing out well, so double your washing detergent amount until you find the balance that works? Make certain all garments are really dry before placing them onto the baby. Try drying them in the sun a few times, using fabric softener for babies.

Perhaps the milk is too rich? Are you nursing the baby? Ask your doctor if your milk is too high in carbs/sugars, and if you can pump your breast milk and dilute it with a bit of purified water for the baby?

Pay attention to your own diet. Is it rich in veggies, fruits, and healthy proteins, low in carbs and sugars? If not, you need to quickly change to a healthy diet for both your sakes. If you are using formula, it may be a bit too rich for the baby's metabolism and need more water added. Try exercising the baby's arms and legs more to help the baby burn a few calories and to get stronger. : ) God bless you both.

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October 26, 20070 found this helpful

To keep mold/mildew from forming when it's not practical to wash the clothes right then, try keeping a large tub containing a mixture of baking soda and water in the laundry room. (Sorry, I don't remember the amount of baking soda, just a little should do). When you take wet/dirty clothes off of the baby, put them in the tub until you're ready to do a load of laundry. IMPORTANT: BE SURE THE TUB HAS A LID THAT BABY CAN'T REMOVE, OR PUT IT OUT OF BABY'S REACH! Hope this helps! (I used cloth diapers on my son when he was a baby and did this with them).

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July 1, 20080 found this helpful

A lot of my daughters and nieces clothing was in a storage building that had a hot water leak. We thought that they were ruined. But because I like to keep everything just in case, I wanted to give them some true effort. I first placed them in a tub with Shout, Spray in Wash and Zout followed by Dreft. I then took them and placed them in a hot water bath with dish washing liquid and bleach (I used 2 cups to a sink full of water of bleach) it worked! I am not sure what the trick was but I am going to wash the rest of the items this way. All that I can loose is what I have already lost.

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October 26, 20080 found this helpful

i tried Lynda's advice (10/26/2007). I used Clorox bleach and hot water to remove the mildew stains on the removable seat of the baby's walker. It's a blue color fabric w/ Winnie the Pooh print. The walker was stored outside in the patio and not cleaned after the 1st baby used it. When I removed the seat there were mildew stains around the front of the seat (that's where food usually falls when the baby feeds herself).

I tried so many different products to remove the mildew stain, to no avail, until I searched on line and tried the good old Clorox bleach remedy and it worked great! Can't even tell there were mildew stains. The colors and the prints on the fabric looks new! Now I can use the walker for many more years and use it for my grandchildren.

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February 19, 20090 found this helpful

Are you prepared to offer any advice on how or which product is available, which may assist in removing mold from cot covers?

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