How To Remove Diaper Cream From Fabric: A Step-By-Step Guide

As a parent, you know that diaper creams are essential for preventing and treating diaper rash. But when that thick, creamy barrier gets on clothing, sheets, and other fabrics, it can be a challenge to remove.

If you’re searching for the best way to get diaper cream stains out of fabric, you’ve come to the right place.

If you’re short on time, here’s a quick answer to your question: Gently scrape off excess cream, pretreat with dish soap, wash in hot water with detergent and bleach, repeat as needed. But keep reading for more details on the most effective process for removing set-in diaper cream stains from all types of fabric.

Supplies Needed

Dish soap

Dish soap is an essential item when it comes to removing diaper cream from fabric. Its grease-cutting properties make it effective in breaking down the oily residue left by the cream. Look for a mild dish soap that is gentle on fabrics.

Laundry detergent

Laundry detergent is another key ingredient in removing diaper cream stains from fabric. Choose a detergent that is specifically designed for stain removal, as it will have the necessary enzymes to break down the cream and lift it from the fabric fibers.


In some cases, bleach may be necessary to remove stubborn diaper cream stains. However, it should only be used on white or colorfast fabrics, as bleach can cause discoloration. Always follow the instructions on the bleach bottle and test it on a small, inconspicuous area of the fabric before using it on the stain.

Old toothbrush or dull knife (for scraping)

An old toothbrush or a dull knife can be handy for scraping off excess diaper cream before treating the stain. Gently scrape off as much of the cream as possible without rubbing it further into the fabric.

Paper towels

Having paper towels on hand is important for blotting and absorbing any excess diaper cream or cleaning solutions during the stain removal process. They are highly absorbent and can help prevent the stain from spreading.


Water is the most basic and essential ingredient for any stain removal process. It is used to dilute cleaning solutions, rinse off the fabric, and remove any residual cleaning agents. Make sure to use cold water when treating diaper cream stains, as hot water can set the stain.

Remember that different fabrics may require different approaches to stain removal. Always check the care label on your fabric before attempting any stain removal methods. If you are unsure or the stain is particularly stubborn, it is best to consult a professional cleaner.

Step-by-Step Process

Scrape off excess diaper cream

The first step in removing diaper cream from fabric is to scrape off any excess cream. You can use a spoon or a dull knife to carefully remove as much of the cream as possible. Be gentle to avoid spreading the cream or pushing it further into the fabric fibers.

Pretreat with dish soap

Once you have removed the excess cream, it’s time to pretreat the stain. Dish soap can be an effective solution for breaking down the oils in the diaper cream. Apply a small amount of dish soap directly to the stained area and gently work it into the fabric using your fingers or a soft cloth.

Let it sit for a few minutes to allow the soap to penetrate the stain.

Wash with hot water, detergent, and bleach

After pretreating the stain, it’s time to wash the fabric. Check the care label on the fabric to ensure that it can be washed in hot water. If it is safe to do so, wash the fabric in the hottest water recommended for the fabric type, along with your regular laundry detergent.

For white fabrics, you can also add a small amount of bleach to the wash cycle to help remove any remaining stains.

Repeat as needed for tough stains

If the stain persists after the first wash, don’t worry! Diaper cream stains can be stubborn, especially if they have had time to set in. Simply repeat the pretreating and washing process as many times as necessary until the stain is completely gone.

Be patient and persistent, and the stain should eventually come out.

Tips for Different Fabrics


Cotton is a versatile and commonly used fabric for clothing and household items. When it comes to removing diaper cream stains from cotton fabric, follow these steps:

  1. Scrape off any excess diaper cream using a blunt knife or spoon. Be careful not to rub or spread the cream further into the fabric.
  2. Apply a small amount of dish soap or laundry detergent directly to the stain. Gently rub the fabric together to create a lather.
  3. Rinse the fabric under cold water to remove the soap and check if the stain has been removed. If not, repeat the process or try using a stain remover specifically designed for oil-based stains.
  4. Wash the fabric as usual, following the care instructions provided.
  5. Inspect the fabric after washing. If the stain is still visible, avoid drying the fabric as heat can set the stain. Instead, repeat the previous steps until the stain is completely gone.

For more detailed instructions or additional tips, you can visit reputable websites such as The Spruce or Good Housekeeping.

Polyester and Synthetic Fabrics

Polyester and synthetic fabrics can be a bit more challenging to remove diaper cream stains from, but with the right approach, it can be done:

  1. Blot any excess diaper cream with a paper towel or cloth. Avoid rubbing the stain as it may push the cream deeper into the fabric.
  2. Mix a solution of warm water and mild detergent. Dampen a clean cloth or sponge with the solution and gently dab the stain, working from the outside in. Avoid using hot water as it can set the stain.
  3. Rinse the fabric under cold water to remove any remaining soap residue.
  4. If the stain is still visible, apply a small amount of rubbing alcohol or a stain remover specifically designed for synthetic fabrics. Follow the instructions provided on the product label.
  5. Wash the fabric in cold water using a gentle cycle. Check the fabric after washing to ensure the stain is completely gone before drying.

For more specific instructions or additional tips, you can consult reliable sources like Cleanipedia or Stain Removal 101.

Wool and Silk

Wool and silk are delicate fabrics that require extra care when dealing with diaper cream stains:

  1. Blot any excess diaper cream with a clean cloth or paper towel. Avoid rubbing the stain as it may cause further damage.
  2. Gently apply a small amount of baby shampoo or mild detergent to the stained area. Use a soft cloth or sponge to dab the stain, working from the outside in.
  3. Rinse the fabric under cold water to remove any soap residue.
  4. If the stain persists, consider taking the fabric to a professional cleaner experienced in handling delicate fabrics.

For more detailed guidance or additional tips, you can refer to trusted sources like The Spruce or Tips Bulletin.

Leather and Suede

Removing diaper cream stains from leather or suede can be tricky, so it’s best to act quickly and seek professional help if needed:

  1. Gently scrape off any excess diaper cream with a blunt knife or spoon, being extremely careful not to spread or rub the cream into the fabric.
  2. Blot the stained area with a clean cloth or paper towel to absorb as much of the cream as possible.
  3. Consult a professional leather or suede cleaner to ensure the stain is properly treated without causing further damage.

For more specific instructions or professional advice, it is recommended to reach out to experts in leather and suede cleaning or visit websites such as How to Clean Stuff or Leather Honey.

Preventing Future Stains

When it comes to diaper cream stains, prevention is key. By taking a few simple steps, you can minimize the chances of getting diaper cream on your baby’s clothes or other fabrics. Here are some tips to help you prevent future stains:

Use a diaper cream spatula

Instead of using your fingers to apply diaper cream, consider using a diaper cream spatula. This will help you control the amount of cream you apply and reduce the chances of it getting on your baby’s clothes.

Using a spatula also ensures that you don’t transfer any dirt or bacteria from your hands onto your baby’s skin.

Place a cloth under baby during changes

Another way to prevent diaper cream from getting on fabric is to place a cloth or changing pad under your baby during diaper changes. This will catch any excess cream that may accidentally come off during the application process.

It’s much easier to wash a cloth or changing pad than it is to remove diaper cream stains from clothing or other fabrics.

Immediately pretreat any stains

If you do notice any diaper cream stains on fabric, it’s important to act quickly. The longer the stain sits, the harder it will be to remove. As soon as you notice a stain, gently scrape off any excess cream with a spoon or spatula.

Then, pretreat the stained area with a stain remover or a mixture of dish soap and water. Allow the pretreatment to sit for a few minutes before laundering the fabric as usual.

Remember, prevention is always better than cure. By taking these steps to prevent diaper cream stains, you can save yourself time and effort in the long run. Happy diaper changing!

When to Contact a Professional

While it is possible to remove diaper cream from fabric on your own, there are certain situations where it may be best to contact a professional for assistance. Here are a few instances where professional help might be necessary:

1. Delicate or Expensive Fabrics

If the fabric stained with diaper cream is made from delicate or expensive materials, such as silk or cashmere, it is recommended to seek professional help. These fabrics require special care and handling to avoid further damage.

2. Stubborn Stains

If you have tried multiple methods to remove the diaper cream stain but it still persists, it may be time to call in the experts. Professionals have access to specialized tools and products that can effectively tackle even the toughest stains.

3. Lack of Confidence

If you are unsure about how to properly remove the diaper cream stain or are afraid of causing further damage to the fabric, it is best to leave it to the professionals. They have the knowledge and experience to handle different types of fabrics and stains without causing harm.

Remember, contacting a professional doesn’t mean you have failed. It simply means that you prioritize the well-being of your fabric and want to ensure the best possible outcome. Professional cleaners have the expertise to handle a wide range of stains and fabrics, so don’t hesitate to reach out for their assistance.

For more information on professional stain removal services, you can visit or These websites provide valuable resources and tips on how to handle different types of stains and fabrics.


With the right supplies and techniques, you can banish stubborn diaper cream stains from clothing, sheets, upholstery, and more. By using a little elbow grease and laundry savvy, you can keep your fabrics looking clean and fresh.

Just remember to act quickly when you notice a stain, and repeat the process as needed until the stain is completely gone. With this comprehensive guide, you’ll be prepared to tackle diaper cream stains like a pro!

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