I use my own diaper spray and cloth wipes most of the time, but I also like to have disposable wipes available for wiping little hands and for poop clean-ups (less poop in the cloth diaper bin is a real bonus for me!). J has really sensitive skin and when we realized that the disposable wipes were causing the eczema on his face to flare up, I decided there was no reason I couldn’t make my own disposable wipes. I found a recipe that I liked at Wellness Mama, then edited it to fit my own preferences.
It was a small start-up cost since I didn’t have many of the necessary ingredients, but after the initial cost I can honestly say that I’ve saved quite a bit of money. We always bought our wipes in bulk at Costco, but even with bulk prices and coupons, homemade wipes are cheaper. The only store-bought wipes I purchase now are the small travel packages, but only because I haven’t figured out a good way to carry travel packages of homemade wipes!
I store my wipes a couple of different ways, depending on where I’m keeping them (I keep some in the kitchen and some in J’s bedroom). For the following recipe, I made a double batch so that I can show you two separate storage possibilities. If you want to make a single batch (1/2 a roll of paper towels at a time), just halve the recipe. Also, feel free to play around with the ingredients so they suit your preferences.
Start with a high-quality roll of paper towels. Most of what I’ve read recommends Bounty. I use Kirkland (which is Costco’s store brand) and they work really well. You need a sturdy paper towel, not a cheap, thin one.
Using a serrated knife, cut the paper towels in half.
I store some wipes in a round container large enough to hold 1/2 roll of paper towels and others in an old wipe box. To use an old wipe box, accordion fold 1/2 the roll of towels.
Then, place them in the box.
The Kirkland rolls are so big that I can’t fit the entire half in a box, so I halve the half and put it in the box. If this happens to you, just save the other towels for your next batch.
Put the other full half in a round container with a lid. You can use a plastic Tupperware bowl, but I like to use this canister because it sits out in my kitchen and I think it looks nicer.
If you won’t use the wipes up in less than 2 weeks, add 10 drops grapefruit seed extract. It acts as a natural preservative.
It’s not a necessity, but if you’d like to add an extra scent, add 10 drops of an essential oil of your choice (I use lavender or orange, or sometimes a combination of the two).
Pour half the solution over each set of paper towels and let it absorb for 10 minutes.
Then, flip it upside down and let it absorb for another 10 minutes.
Finally, pull the center cardboard cylinder from the middle of the paper towels in the round container, so that you have a center sticking out for easy access to the wipes.
The wipes in the box are already ready to go since they were accordion folded before placing them in the box.
I find that the wipes are better on the second day. The first time I made this recipe I thought they were too “mushy,” but by the second day they seemed to set and were just right.
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