This is Day 23 of the 31 Days to Green Clean series.
This post was originally posted on Sept. 4, 2009 and is one of my most popular posts here at Live Renewed. I love that you guys love these homemade reusable disinfecting wipes! Today I wanted to take the opportunity to update some of the information and the recipes in the post.
As I have been trying to eliminate paper waste from our household as well as clean our home using natural, non-toxic, and frugal cleaning products, there is one thing I have been missing – Clorox wipes.
Having 2 (now 3!) small children, especially an active, independent, and potty-training toddler, means lots of little messes. Sometimes I just don’t want to get out the cleaning spray and a use a big rag just to clean up a small mess.
Sometimes I don’t have the luxury of time to run to the cabinet and get the spray and a rag – I need to get something cleaned up quickly before it turns into a bigger mess. Sometimes I want to be sure that something is disinfected and not just wiped down with water. I love the convenience of pre-moistened wipes that are small, quick and easily accessible.
But I look on the back of my Clorox wipes and read, “PRECAUTIONARY STATEMENTS: HAZARDS TO HUMANS AND DOMESTIC ANIMALS.”
That is not something that I want to clean my home with, or use around my children (or my dog)!! Do you?
I’ve been thinking about making homemade disinfecting wipes for a while, but just wasn’t sure exactly how I would do it. Finally I took the time to make my own and I am really happy with what I came up with!
*Update 10/12: I recently posted about how I’ve learned that you are not supposed to mix castile soap and vinegar for cleaning. So I’ve come up with two different recipes that will still give you great disinfecting wipes, and you can choose which recipe you’d rather use based on what ingredients you have on hand and want to use.
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Homemade Disinfecting Wipes
- Squares of cloth – You can cut up an old t-shirt or receiving blanket, or any scrap cloth you have
- Container – You can reuse either an disinfecting wipes container or a baby wipes container
First, cut up squares of fabric for your wipes. I got 18 wipes, some small and some bigger, out of one t-shirt. I’ll probably cut up another t-shirt just to make sure I have enough wipes on hand at all times. If you’re worried about the fabric fraying you could use pinking shears, but I haven’t had a problem with that.
Then, put the wipes into a container. You can either throw them into a reused baby wipes container (no need to fold!) or roll them up and put them in a reused disinfecting wipes container. I roll them on a little bit of an angle so that the wipes in the middle stick up a little farther than the wipes on the outside and are easier to grab.
Now, it’s time to choose your wipes solution recipe. They both work well and include ingredients that have disinfecting qualities. Which one you choose will depend on which ingredients you have on hand, and just personal preference.
Disinfecting Wipes Recipe #1
The vinegar and lemon have disinfecting properties and the lemon also gives it a pleasant scent. The dish soap is for extra cleaning power. The combined scent of the dish soap and lemon essential oil smells really fresh and clean, and covers up any smell of the vinegar in this recipe.
Disinfecting Wipes Recipe #2
This is basically my multipurpose cleaner for using with the wipes. The tea tree oil has anti-bacterial properties and the castile soap provides the cleaning power. You can find both castile soap and tea tree oil at Target, but I have found the best prices online.
Mix your solution together in a small bowl or measuring cup and pour over your wipes. Be sure to label your wipes well. It’s even a good idea to put the recipe right on the label so you won’t have to look it up every time you want to make another batch of wipes.
After I use a wipe, I just throw it down the stairs into the laundry hamper that I use for the rest of my rags. (Or really I just leave it sitting on the corner of the kitchen counter until I have a few rags in the pile and then just throw them all down together.) They get washed with all the other cleaning rags, so it’s really no extra work for me.
I am loving this convenient, natural, homemade, reusable, and frugal alternative to Clorox wipes!!
And if you’ve never used castile soap, it’s one of my most favorite natural, multi-functional products to use all around your home! Check out The Many Uses of Castile Soap!
Want more DIY cleaning recipes, green living tips, and encouragement to help you live a more natural lifestyle? Grab a copy of my ultimate green living guide - Green Your Life: The Guide to Natural, Eco-Friendly Living!
What do you use for natural cleaning around your home? Do you have any convenience cleaning products that you just can’t live without? Have you come up with alternatives for any of them?
Go here to read all the posts in the 31 Days to Green Clean series.
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