DIY Homemade Flushable Wet Wipes (that don’t hurt your tush)

Stomach viruses are the worst.   I’ve written about staying hydrated and the items I keep in my sick kid prep list but I wanted to revisit this topic, because odds are, if you come down with even a mild stomach bug or food poisoning you’ll be revisiting the restroom…over and over again.

And it really starts to chafe.

When a bug hit several members of the family, I re-purposed an old baby wipes recipe.  I wasn’t blogging when I originally tweaked a bunch of baby wipes recipes I found on Pinterest so I don’t have an exact source :(  The kids (thank goodness) have been out of diapers for a couple of years.  I originally considered the homemade baby wipes one of my “Pinterest fails” because the wipes were too small for infant blow outs.  I also made them in an old wipes container so they were difficult to get out of the container, unlike store bought wipes.  I did use the wipes when I was potty training though.  (Have you seen the cost of the Pullups potty training wipes or the name brand toilet wipes?  Scandalous!!)

I do sometimes buy commercial toilet wipes but they are expensive and we go through them in days.  The day of the stomach bugs, we were out of them (of course.)

So I made some…

I used a cheap tupperware that stands tall.  This one change from using baby wipe containers made dispensing a great deal easier.

I cut a roll of paper towels in half.  (I used to use Members Mark from Sams Club–they are just as durable and soft as Bounty.  Based on news reports regarding the havoc wipes are causing in city sewage systems, I have started using biodegradable paper towels.  Keep in mind that commercially made wipes are much more durable and take longer to break down than paper towels. )

Removed the center cardboard and stood it up in the Tupperware.

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Then I mixed 2 Cups hot water

1 Tbs Baby Wash (I don’t like it to be too soapy)

1 Tbs Baby Oil

a few drops of Tea Tree Oil (a small bottle lasts forever and it keeps the wipes from mildewing)

Stir the mixture and pour it in the Tupperware.

Voila! You have a wet wipes tub for the bathroom! 

They are perfect.  I actually use them for many purposes now and since they are so easy and cheap to make, I don’t feel bad going through them.  I have many more tips on how to beat the stomach bug! 

7 caregiver hacks for stomach bugs

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    • says

      I had to fiddle with the water to baby wash and oil ratio. The first time I made them (NOT the above recipe but the common baby wipes recipe) my son kept squirming and said his butt felt slimy!

  1. says

    Love this! We buy the flushable wipes for my little one, and you’re right- they’re super pricey. I hadn’t thought about making them. Which is actually crazy because I totally made a similar wipe solution for washable, reusable cloth wipes when she was a baby. Definitely going to try this soon!
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  2. says

    Great recipe! You’re right, they look extremely easy to make and also very affordable! I love that it’s natural. God knows what really comes into those “all-natural” wipes…

  3. Rebecca G says

    Great idea…except for the flushable part. Paper towels are not really supposed to be flushed down the toilet. They don’t break down as easily in water as toilet paper. :( Especially if you have a septic tank or older pipes that the paper towels can get snagged on. It can be an expensive fix (trust me on that from experience…lol)

    • says

      I do stick to the no more than 2 at a time rule that is also on the store bought wipes. Since I cut a roll of the select size paper towels in size, the pieces are small. Knock on wood! I haven’t had any issues myself and I have been doing this for years, first as baby wipes then as the adjusted adult wipes. I have a septic system and low flow energy efficien toilets, myself. Hopefully, only those who know their systems will choose how they dispose of them.

  4. Senorita Bonita says

    I am truly impressed … looking forward to this DIY project. We’ve never flushed paper towels; do we need to buy ‘cheap’ thin paper towels for “flush-a-bility”?


    • says

      I have had a few people tell me that I shouldn’t flush them. I usually buy the Sam’s Club paper towels and I never flush more than two small squares at a time. I have low flow energy saving toilets and a septic system and haven’t had any issues. It will really depend on your toilets. We rarely have clogs. If you are prone to clogging than I wouldn’t try to flush them!

      One reader brought up a concern with paper towels not breaking down correctly. I have never heard of this but have since seen “recycled, easily biodegradable” paper towels at the organic stores.

    • says

      Hmm not sure but if you make small batches you can skip it. It helps keep the wipes from getting mildewy. If you make only a weeks worth then you won’t have that problem! I will do my next batch with lavender oil and see if that works!

    • says

      Do you have a post with your recipe on it? I love trying out different versions. That is exactly why I like to make my own. I think that TP and toilet wipes are a rip off! I always try to find the best price for the toilet paper because it is a necessity but I would much rather make my own wipes.

  5. says

    Hello Herchel- did you or anybody actually verify that paper towels are flushable (quickly decompose)? I searched and according to an article by a Sewerage Authority (link attached), they don’t. That Paper Towels are made out of higher grade wood products, and therefore don’t break down sufficiently fast. I figured your readers would want to consider this info. Thank you, Bret

    • says

      Hi Brett, I did actually just see a story about the store bought wipes being very bad for the sewage system yesterday and am concurrently doing research on whether lower quality paper towels or recycled paper towels (which is what I use) degrades faster. I also want to make it clear that we do not use wipes all the time. I started making them when my kids had a stomach virus (hence the “don’t hurt your tush” in the title.) My DIY wipes are definitely not as strong as the store bought wipes.

      An option that I also use is to mix the solution in a squirt bottle and squirt it onto toilet paper when cleaning oneself. This skips the need for the paper towel altogether.

      • says

        Hi Herchel, yes, I think I saw the same TV segment. FYI- the link I put in my previous post does describe paper towels as being more “decomposable” than regular flushable wipes, but still encourages against it. If anybody hears any more, I’d like to know. Thanks for following up.


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