Thursday, August 5, 2010

Wipes - Cloth or Disposable?

If you decide to use cloth diapers, you might find yourself wondering whether you should use cloth wipes, or stick to the disposable.  Before actually going to a store and talking to someone about the wipes, my husband and I assumed we would use disposable.  You can buy a box of 700 wipes for about $8, they are already moistened, and you just throw them away.  Easy peasy. 

So, after getting the tutorial on all the different diapers, I asked the lady, "You don't really use cloth wipes, do you?"  Sure enough, she does!  If you think about it, when you use are changing a disposable diaper, where do you put the wipes?  You fold them up with the diaper, right?  Everything stays together and you throw it away.  If you use a cloth diapers you wouldn't do that.  You'd have to remove the dirty diaper, clean up the baby, (and if you're like me, you use about 40 wipes ;) and then put on the new diaper.  After everything is taken care of, you'll probably need to clean off the dirty diaper into the toilet, and the used wipes need to be picked up and thrown in the trash. 

Here are the few reasons we chose to use cloth wipes. 
1.  My husband likes to go big or go home.  If we say we're doing cloth diapers, we should be advocates of cloth wipes for the same reasons =)
2.  Instead of throwing away the wipes and then putting the diaper in the wet bag (which will be explained in an upcoming post), you can throw the diaper and the wipes into the wetbag together and wash them all together. 
3.  Like I said earlier, I go through a LOT of wipes with a dirty diaper.  Partly why is because they are so thin and I'm not good at folding them over and using the other side.  Cloth wipes are more like a soft rag - much thicker.  For some reason I just feel like I'd use less of them.
4.  The overall cost of cloth wipes is relatively cheap.  Just like cloth diapers, it will cost more upfront, but overtime it will be cheaper.  A 12-pack of BumGenius flannel baby wipes costs $11.95.  We are going to start off with two packs - $24.  Even if we end up getting two more packs before the baby is potty-trained, we will only have spent $48.  That's equivalent to six boxes of disposable wipes.  I don't think that would get me through two years. 
5.  Finally, you can make your own cloth wipes!  Buy some flannel or some receiving blankets, cut them into wipe-size squares, and sew them back to back.  I haven't done that yet, but I'm planning on it. 

Only one more minor issue to clear up...don't the wipes need to be wet?  Indeed they do.  You can buy special spray for the wipes, or you can buy cubes to dissolve in water and put in your own spray bottle.  Applecheeks, Thirsties, and Happy Heiny's all make spray that costs between $6.50 and $16.00.  This is one of those times when I wish I could tell you from experience how long they last, but I plan on experimenting with lots of different products.  I've heard that you can make some yourself, too.  That's on the list of things for me to research.

Last thing, if you're traveling, put a handful of wipes and a little spray bottle in a container that looks just like the disposable boxes. That way you can keep it in your diaper bag and use them everywhere. =)

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