I seem to be thinking about wipes a lot lately. I suppose you have to deal with a few more messes and germs when you have kids, and finding easy ways of cleaning them up is always a good thing. Over the past few years I've become reliant on Lysol (or other brands, depending on the sales) wipes.
Cleaning up potties and room messes becomes much easier when you have wipes and cleaner at the ready. However there have been a few reasons that I dislike using these wipes: they are expensive, they are filled with toxic chemicals that are likely seeping through my skin each time I use them, and they come in plastic containers that are meant to be disposable (though I have found they make nice storage containers after you wash them out and strip off the labels). I've noticed quite a few pins on Pinterest about making your own wipes out of paper towels and finally decided to give it a go a few weeks ago. Of course, they are still disposable and you would be even more righteously green if you were to use washable rags in place of the paper towel, but I need the convenience of these disposable wipes right now! Making my own is about an eighth of the price per container, contains only the ingredients that I choose, and uses FAR less packaging since the paper towel comes in a light plastic package that breaks down quicker than the hard stuff and the container I keep my wipes in gets re-used every time.
I used the method from Fabulessly Frugal and the basic idea for the recipe from My Merry Messy Life. The tip for soaking the paper towel in a ziplock bag (from Fabulessly Frugal) before you transfer it to the container is really helpful. I just air out the ziplock bags afterwards and re-use them next time around. I cut my paper towel roll in half, then soaked each half in a solution of 1.5 cups vinegar and about 20 drops of Lavender per bag. I originally tried using tea tree oil, but that many drops made for a SERIOUSLY strong odour that gave both me and my husband headaches for half a day. Lavender is also anti-bacterial and we can handle the smell much better.
I love these wipes! They are easy to make and SO cheap. They pull out really nicely from the centre, just like the store-bought kind. I liked them so much that I attempted to make disposable baby wipes for our camping trip last weekend. I used the same method, just substituted the baby wipe solution I used in my last post for the vinegar & lavender (I have read recipes for baby wipe solution that use vinegar, but if there was a slight bit of rash, I am sure it would burn with vinegar -ouch!). I think I must have used too much liquid for the baby wipes because they became so saturated that they were hard to pull out of the container and ripped very easily. Also, I added WAY too much soap and had to do a wipe of plain water afterwards to remove the soap suds, before drying and putting on a clean diaper. Too complicated for my tastes. Right now I don't need any more disposable baby wipes, but next time I do I will try using less liquid and less soap! It's nice to have the option to create my own products.
Maria & Cecelia
Two women who love Saskatchewan and are making lifestyle changes towards sustainability.
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