Instructables

How to make your own (cheap & green) cleaning wipes!

I am a busy mom and I love the convenience of clorox wipes...however I don't love the price. I found myself only using the wipes when I was in a real hurry rather than being able to enjoy the convenience all the time (we have a pretty tight budget!) Also I wanted something that would be reused instead of thrown away. I tried making wipes w/sturdy paper towels after reading an idea on a blog but they just didn't hold up to scrubbing and with a toddler and a small child I needed to be able to scrub stuck on jelly and crayon and pizza sauce and whatever else a kid could leave stuck on the table! Here's what I came up with and it's an amazing solution for our family! feel free to add suggestions!
 
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Step 1: Materials!

for this I used an empty Clorox wipes container that matched my kitchen but you could use any container that the wipes wont dry out in.....it's preferred that you recycle something rather than go out and buy it but some ideas are a tupperware container w/ a hole made in the top, an empty wipes container (like wet ones or clorox wipes) or I found this neat tupperware with an opening already made in the center....GET CREATIVE!
Also you will need wipes. I used the Mr. Clean reusable wipes which are approx 3 dollars a package.
Then use your favorite recipe for cleaner you can make all purpose wipes, glass wipes or whatever you would like. don't limit yourself to store bought cleaners as you can make your own for this step.

Step 2: Cut wipes (if desired)

I found that the wipes were GIGANTIC so I decided to cut them in half....double the wipes yay! but you can cut them to whatever size you would like here.
mamaells5 years ago
Thanks for the tip! thought you might like this recipe for homemade baby wipes:
1 1/2 C water
2 T baby soap
2 T baby oil
1 cup full of alcohol
cut one roll of bounty select-a-size paper towels in half, put into a container and slowly pour solution over paper towels. let sit 30 mins. remove cardboard center of paper towels and pull wipes from the center of the roll. OR= use the wipes like you used for this Instructable. these are great for sticky hands and faces.
swartley3ga (author)  mamaells5 years ago
personally don't want all those chemicals on my baby but I do use cut up squares of tshirts as paper towels and I use them for LOTS of baby clean ups! I tried soaking paper towels but they don't hold up to any sort of scrubbing at all even the good viva and bounty ones =/ I have tried just dipping paper towels in water right before using them and using them as wipes which works great and no chemicals on my daughter who has really bad eczema ...=)
if you don't like chemicals try a little dr bronners, water and some TTO or just use plain old water. instead of using paper towels, invest in some cloth wipes or cut up an old receiving blankets.
Salt is also a very good abrasive, for counters, sinks, stovetops, even pans and glass dishes. It stays abrasive longer than baking soda, and will eventually dissolve, but if you're done cleaning before it has dissolved, it can be wiped right up. No residue. No odor..
ambailey3 years ago
Just a couple ideas I had. Wal-Mart has terry washcloths that are like 18 for $4 or 5. White ones or colors. They're not good for bathing but they are good for cleaning.- that's what I use. Fold in half and lay them in an empty baby wipe box. pour some cleaning solution in and there you are. The more they get washed the better they are at scrubbing because they kind of pill up.
dibutler5 years ago
Good idea! I see this as a great money saver. You could also use the thin cloths that are semi-disposable that most Wal-Mart and grocery stores carry. They are in a small pkg of about 3, and would work great for this.
swartley3ga (author)  dibutler5 years ago
I just saw where someone else uses cut up squares of T-shirts...I don't know that it would work for scrubbing as well as these but it would make great napkins or tissues
I would think anything cottony would work, however, something like a terry cloth, or with a nap, would scrub better. Depends on how hard you want to scrub! If it is a light cleaning, then it should be fine. You generally can't scrub too hard with a standard disposable wipe, anyway.
swartley3ga (author)  dibutler5 years ago
that's one of the main things I hate about the standard disposable wipes...they can't scrub the stuck on mess very well and we have LOT of stuck on mess it seems like! lol
thanks for this article! may I suggest for stuck on or sticky stuff use baking soda for the occasion when you need a mild abrasive cleaner. just sprinkle it on abd use your already wet wipes to clean. Baking soda does not scratch even 'mirror' surfaces like stainless-steel toasters and removes build-up on plastic contaioners used with your cleaners of course made with soap not detergent and makes things shine again!
Use an old credit card as a scraper, great for pots too.
I love the credit card idea!  I always have "empty" gift cards around.  I hate throwing them in the garbage, so this is an awesome solution for me!  Thanks!
Retirement14 years ago
I also love disposable wipes, especially for the bathroom. Like you, I am not a fan of the price and the fact that I throw them away after one use.  This solves both problems. Bravo to you.
I love this idea!!