Knowing how to lanolise wool is not complicated! Let Little Bunny Bear take you through the simple process step by step in this visual guide.
What is lanolin and why should I bother lanolising my wool?
Liquid lanolin is made from the stuff that sheep make to keep their coats clean and fresh. When you lanolise your wool, you will help it stay fresher for longer, as well as making it more waterproof. When you use your wool as a “puddle pad”, the lanolin reacts with urine in a chemical process to form salt, hence it won’t smell. Wool is pretty awesome! and lanolin is a really great non-toxic waterproofing solution for your woollen things.
Lanolin is a great natural moisturiser and because sheep make it, and sheep make wool, they were always going to be friends. If you make lanolin you friend and learn how to lanolise properly, I promise it won’t let you down, and its not complicated!
How to lanolise
To lanolise, simply dissolve around a tablespoon of lanolin in a little hot water, then add this to a bowl of luke warm water. Then, immerse the puddle pad. Let it bathe for a few minutes and soak up the lanolin, then take it out, gently squeezing the excess water out or wrap them in a towel (tip: they wont look as cute as your baby in a towel, but you can’t have everything). You don’t need to soak it overnight (although you can do if you want to), and you don’t need to rinse it, just let it dry. That’s it: simple!
If possible, you should lanolise your pad each time you wash it. Remember, you won’t need to wash it after each wetting because of wools amazing antibacterial properties. (You can read more about this here). When you do wash it, wash it up to 30 degrees either by hand or in the washing machine o a gentle wool cycle.
TIP 1: If you use solid lanolin, add a tiny drop of liquid soap to the tablespoon of lanolin to help it dissolve.
TIP 2: Put your diluted lanolin solution in a spray bottle and spray your pad to keep it topped up between lanolin baths or just for a little extra protection.
How do I know its lanolised enough ? / troubleshooting
The more lanolin you use, the better your waterproofing will be. So there is always the temptation to add loads of lanolin to your solution. However, this may result in your pad becoming sticky, and/or with little patches of white where the lanolin has not been able to absorb. It will still work really well, but it will feel sticky – and as someone with a phobia of sticky things, I don’t recommend it! If you do accidentally add too much lanolin, you can rinse it, or simply wait for it to get less sticky, which it will eventually as the lanolin is absorbed. Alternatively, you can usually rub it the excess lanolin using your fingers, to help it absorb (lanolin makes a great natural moisturiser for skin too – so thats nice). You can actually do this with the solid lanolin anyway, and its a good method of lanolising, but takes longer than using a water solution and uses more lanolin.
Where to buy lanolin and which lanolin is best?
You can buy liquid lanolin online. My favourite is sheepish grins because its a solid lanolin you make into a liquid (best value for money as not diluted already) but I also like the disana liquid lanolin which is also pretty good. If its 100% natural lanolin, you can use any lanolin you like, so shop around. You can also use lansiloh nipple cream, which many mothers have already, which will work well for this purpose – a teaspoon per small pad (with a tiny bit of liquid soap to help dilute it), and a tablespoon for a large pad will be enough because it’s so rich.