Despite my title, these are not just for babies’ behinds! Since having children, the one saving grace for all accidents has been the wonderful baby wipes. Oh. My. Goodness. Why had no one ever told me about these before?! They clean everything! Baby bottoms, hands, faces, toys, walls, floors… the list goes on. Anyway, the magic miracle that is baby wipes is a token item I have on me at all times. However, I’d never really thought about it before I really started taking on minimising waste, that I could harness the power of these wipes in reusable form. To be honest, taking them back to their initial purpose (cleaning babies bottoms) I wish I’d discovered them earlier. As I’m a cloth nappy Mum, I find reusable wipes are so much nicer than the disposables. Why?
When I’ve used them I throw them in a wet bag, rinse them, and then put them in the wet pail with the dirty nappies. When it’s time to wash, I put the wipes in a delicates bag and throw them in the wash.
There are less chemicals coming into contact with my baby’s skin.
I know exactly what is in my wipe solution.
I’m not spending money constantly on buying wipes.
The smell is minimised as the wipes are in the laundry, and I don’t have stinky wipes sitting in the rubbish bin.
I no longer require a bin in bub’s room, and therefore don’t have to take it out to the outside bin every nappy change! No rubbish bin = no liner =less plastic!!! Hooray!
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Where To Start
You can use any fabric you want really; terry towelling, cotton, bamboo, flannelette etc. You’ll need to choose a fabric that’s soft and not too thick. Bamboo is awesome because it’s one of the more sustainable fabrics and it also has incredible antibacterial properties! *Side note: Bamboo is a hardy plant, requiring no fertilising and very little attention. It has a fast rate of growth and can be harvested between 1 and 5 years depending on the species of bamboo. So it’s highly sustainable. After harvesting, it grows new shoots and roots and begins to grow all over again!
So, back to the reusable wipes.
How do you want to store your wipes? There are 2 different ways depending on what works best for you. You can store them in a waterproof container with the solution, or store them dry and add your wipe solution as you go. I personally found storing them with the solution easier. That being said however, bamboo fabric is a better choice for this because it more mould resistant. Damp wipes for a long period of time can accumulate mould. Ick!! I go through most of them regularly, so they aren’t just sitting wet in a container for long.
What You'll Need:
A waterproof container – I bought mine from the supermarket. It’s Sistema brand, storage container for tomatoes with a low inner shelf to stop the produce sitting on the bottom of the container. This is perfect for my wipes as it stops any excess solution from making the bottom wipes go soggy. It’s BPA free and has an air filter at the top to allow air flow. I considered many better ecological options, but none I came up with would give me the longevity this would.
Fabric – My wipes are made from a cut up an old bamboo baby blanket that I no longer needed. I didn’t need to hem the edges of the wipe either which is very handy.
A bottle to store your solution – I reused an old Castille Soap bottle.
OR for the dry wipe method, just use a spray bottle – I reused an empty facial toner spray bottle, but you can find nice glass ones on EBay. An amber glass bottle will best protect the essential oils in your solution from deteriorating.
Distilled Water – you can find this in your local supermarket.
Liquid Castille Soap – I bought mine from EBay here.
Coconut Oil – easy enough to pick up from the supermarket!
Lavender Essential Oil – I use Thursday Plantation. You can find them on ebay here.
Making The Wipe Solution
1C distilled water
1Tb liquid castille soap
1Tb coconut oil
5-8 drops lavender essential oil
Pour the water into the bottle using a funnel.
Add the soap, coconut oil and essential oil together.
Place your wipes in your storage container and either pour your wipe solution over the wipes to dampen them, or just put the top back on the spray bottle.
On the go can be a little harder, but if you have a wet bag…you’re all set! I bought mine from bubblebubs. No affiliation, but you can find them here.