Best DIY cloth wipe solution
Going the DIY route can be more economical, and it also gives you the freedom to control exactly what ingredients you’re using.
To make your own cloth wipes solution, you’ll need:
- 4 oz of water
- 1 teaspoon Castile soap
- 1 teaspoon olive oil
- a few drops of lavender essential oil
To assemble as a spray:
- Combine all ingredients in a spray bottle.
- Shake well before use.
- Store in dark, cool cabinet.
To create wet wipes:
- Place wipes into a container. (More on storage below!)
- Pour the solution directly over the wipes.
- Use within 3 days.
How to Store Cloth Wipes
When you purchase conventional wipes, they are already folded, soaked, and ready for duty… but what happens when you use your own wipes? Don’t worry. You’ve got plenty of options!
What mamas are doing:
- “I place all of my dry cloth wipes in an old plastic wipes container. I take what I need as I go and use a cloth wipes spray. When I’m done, I toss the wipes in my wet bag, and I’m good to go.” — Melinda from Indiana
- “I lay the cloth wipes in an upcycled wipes container. Add the homemade wipe solution I make and then I make that batch every few days.” — Jill from Michigan
- “I store them wet usually, but if I don’t have time to make a new batch of solution, I use dry wipes with a spray bottle of diaper spray.” — Liz from California
Another Option: Getting Rid of Wipes!
Yep, that sounds crazy! But for mamas in France, that’s exactly what they’re doing. Diapering lotion is a popular alternative to wipes, and the cool part is that it serves as a cleanser, diaper cream, and ointment all in one! We like Le Petite Creme because it’s only made from six ingredients, including olive oil and beeswax. To use diaper lotion, you squirt a little bit onto a flannel cloth or organic cotton pad and wipe your baby. The lotion cleanses your baby and protects your baby’s skin until the next diaper change.
Feeling crafty? You could also make a cute cloth wipe dispenser.
A note on storing wet wipes: Unless you’re using a preservative, you’ll need to make small batches and use your wipes within three days. If you don’t have time to make a new solution every few days, try using dry wipes with a spray.
Caring for Cloth Wipes
One main benefit of using cloth wipes is that they are reusable, which is good for the earth and for your wallet, but they do require a few extra steps to make sure that they stay clean.
You don’t need to need worry too much about removing any solid waste, because breast milk baby poop is water-soluble, which means it dissolves in the water in your washing machine.
To get your wipes clean:
- Wash them in one load of just wipes or mixed in with cloth diapers
- If washing with your diapers, simply follow your normal cloth diaper wash routine
If your baby is bottle-fed or eats solid food:
You can still use cloth wipes, but you’ll just add one step to keep things sanitary.
To get your wipes clean:
- Discard solid waste
- Rinse your wipes (hint: a hose sprayer makes this step easier!)
- Wash in a wipes-only load or with cloth diapers
Benefits of Using Cloth Wipes
Though cloth diapers and wipes do take some effort and add more laundry to your queue, they have real benefits, including:
- Better for sensitive skin: Skin irritations, rashes, and even eczema have been linked to preservatives in regular baby wipes. (source)
- Better for the environment: Think about all those wipes being tossed out each day. If you used eight wipes per day for 24 months, that would be 5,840 wipes.
- More cost-efficient: Here’s some more math for you. A brand-name bulk box of wipes costs about $15.99 for 624 wipes. That’s about $0.02 per wipe. Remember the 5,840 wipes you used in two years? That’s a whopping $149.65 just for wipes. And let’s face it, you might need a lot more than eight wipes per day!
- Versatile: Even after potty training, you can use these wipes as part of family cloth (i.e. using cloth wipes instead of toilet paper) or in place of facial tissues.
More on Cloth Diapering
Do you already use cloth wipes? Or are you just starting your journey? We’ve got plenty of resources for you: