A few months ago I decided to ditch disposable baby wipes for reusable ones. At first I bought a bunch of face washers to use, but soon learned that these were too coarse, so upgraded to some beautiful soft microfibre squares. I only ever use water at nappy change time, and I’ve since come to learn that others make their own cloth wipe solutions. I’m not sure why – can anyone offer insight? Water works fine for us. I’ve heard it suggested to keep a spray bottle at the change table to wet the reusable wipes, or even a thermos of warm water.
Some of the home-made wipe recipes I’ve found include baby oil, which I find puzzling. Baby oil is made of mineral oil, a petroleum-based ingredient from crude oil. Why anyone would want to use that on a teeny tiny baby is beyond my comprehension.
The above pic shows what I previously used, and the microfibre squares I now use. If I could source some unbleached bamboo cloths I’d like to give them a try.
While we’re on about wipes, how about looking at the ingredients of those Johnson’s Baby wipes in the picture there and the potential effects. As usual, I used Bill Statham’s The Chemical Maze to help decipher the ingredients.
Propylene Glycol: Petroleum derived. Suspected neuro, respiratory and immuno toxicity; sensitisation; eczema.
Cocamidopropyl Betaine: May cause sensitisation; allergic reactions; may contain harmful impurities; suspected immunotoxicity.
Cananga Odorata Flower Oil: Considered safe, however prolonged use may cause nausea or headache; may irritate sensitive skins.
Coco-Glucoside: Generally considered safe in cosmetic use.
Glyceryl Oleate: Can cause eye and skin irritation.
PEG-12 Dimethicone: May be contaminated with ethylene oxide, dioxane and PAHs. (PAHs are suspected respiratory, ardiovascular, liver, endocrine and reproductive toxicity; suspected carcinogens).
Polysorbate 20: Petroleum based. Considered safe when used within concentration limits.
Phenoxyethanol: Mild irritation on sensitive skin; suspected reproductive and developmental toxicity.
Disodium EDTA: Allergic reactions; dermatitis; skin and mucous membrane irritation.
Methylparaben: Human skin toxicant. Suspected endocrine disruption.
Propylparaben: Human skin toxicant. Wildlife and environmental toxicity. Suspected endocrine disruption.
Butylparaben: Human skin toxicant; dermatitis; allergic reactions; interferes with gene expression.