How can I effectively use washcloths for baby wipes? Is there a system that I can set up ahead of time? How long will they keep if I mix them up with say, baby soap and baking soda, or what do I mix them with so that they will keep? Basically I am tired of buying disposables and am going green!
Olivia from Pittsburgh
I've taken wet wash cloths on trips and I just put a failry wet cloth in a zip loc bag. I didn't use anything but water. If it was a long trip I put them in the cooler with the cold stuff so they wouldn't mildew. I had another empty bag for the dirtys.
Kohl's and Target often have 12-packs of washcloths for $2.99 (or less- I have purchased them for .74 at Traget) Because you will probably want to use these exclusively for your child, put a dot on the tag with a permanent marker to keep them separate from your others. Like Glenn'sMom said- just use a zippy bag to put a couple of wet cloths in when travelling- and a separate bag for your "dirty" ones. HTH! :)
I have a recipe for making your own wipes and you could use it with some adjustments. It is designed for a Viva paper towel roll, cut in half.
2 cups water
1 Tablespoons baby wash or baby shampoo
2 Tablespoons baby oil
We mixed this in a large airtight container and then put the cut paper towels in it and pulled from the center when we needed one.
I am sure you could get some soft cloth and surge the edges to create the size you want and keep them in the container.
Have a separate container with bleach water to put the used ones until washing.
One important thing will be to boil your water or use sterilized water so nothing is there to grow initially. Also, using tea tree oil or grape seed extract will kill the microorganisms, but some babies can't handle them.
Personally, I keep them dry in a container next to the sink, then get them wet with plain water right before use. I also cloth diaper, so I wash the wipes with them. Good luck with it!
We have used cloth wipes exclusively with our cloth diapering. I don't put the wipes in any solution, I keep them stacked dry and have a water bottle, a sports type with flip top lid, that I use to wet each one before I change her diaper. I have added a bit of vinegar to the water to keep the bottle from mildewing. I just make sure to wash the bottle about once a week as we have sulfurous water and it does leave black spots on the lid at times. I made cloth wipes from some flannel recieving blankets, I like them better than the washcloths beacause they absorb the water better and clean great. Hope you have good luck.
When my 50 something boys were little I carried several wet washcloths in a plastic bread or hot dog bun bag (no zip locks in those days) ... When I was at home at changing time I just wet 2 or 3 washcloths on the way to where I was going to do the changing. They all wore cloth diapers so after getting rid of the really big mess I put both washcloths and diapers in a pail of bleach water till wash time. My sister told me a few years ago about a hand washing trick she did on trips which might work for baby wipes. She cut a roll of paper towels in half, removed the cardboard roll from the center and then placed it in a decorative tin with a lid. She then mixed water and baby shampoo and poured it over the roll of paper towel and put the lid on the tin. She pulled a short "starter" piece of paper towel to pull out and tear at whatever length she needed. It stayed nice and fresh in the tin and stayed in the car for tripe. You could use any kind of container with a lid.
I have to wonder, How would you like it if you had to wipe your bottom with a cold wet wash cloth?
How spoiled we've become with instant everything.
WARM is better to clean tender baby bottoms. Be glad you don't have to use leaves or Sears catalog pages. LOL Be careful and be safe. GG Vi
I would recommend against using washcloths--they are too rough for a baby's bottom.
What I did for my daughter was cut up old, ready to throw away, t-shirts into "squares. When I did that originally I figured that was "green" enough (by using clothes that were going to be thrown away because they were too used to give away) but my daughter discovered (by accident) that if she tossed the fabric squares in with her cloth diapers, the cloth wipes washed up just fine and are infinitely reusable. However, if you need a wipe for a particularly messy "job," you can feel OK about tossing them away.
I also made my daughter a wetbag, so when she ventures away from the house, she has the wetbag to put used diapers and wipes in to keep until she gets home. If you google "wetbag" you will find easy directions for making one or, of course, you could always just use plastic bags! My daughter is very "green." Hope this helps you in your decision to go "green."
I've read the follow-up posts and have a couple more comments.
Bleach is "bad." It's even recommended to never use bleach on diapers because it never really all comes out & is not healthy on baby bottoms! Just a baking soda & water or vinegar & water soak is all that is needed for wipes and dipes to soak in. I forgot to mention that the t-shirt wipes are kept on the changing table "dry" and a squeeze bottle of tea-tree oil & baby bath is used to wet the wipes when needed. Yes, use boiled water or purified water and keep the squeeze bottle clean so "yuck" doesn't grow. The tea-tree oil is a natural healer, so if your baby's bottom is at all sore or rashy, the tea tree oil will cure the problem quickly & or prevent it from happening to begin with. Good luck all you new Mommies!