Recently I purchased a packet of baby wipes because a bird flying overhead pooped on my shoulder and I needed something to clean myself off with quick smart. The wipes I purchased have the words ‘Babies Choice Alcohol Free’.
When I turn the packet over to read the ingredients it says:
Aqua, polysorbate 20, propylene glycol, phenoxyethanol, methylparaben, butylparaben, ethylparaben, propylparaben, disodium cocamphodiacetate, tocopheryl acetate, aloe barbadensis, fragrance, methylchloroisothiazoline, methylisothiazolinone, 2-bromo-2 nitropropane-1, 3-diol, citric acid.
- That is a LOT of parabens in these baby wipes! The US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) reported that parabens displayed estrogenic activity in several tests and can have endocrine-disrupting action.
- ‘2-bromo-2 nitropropane-1, 3-diol’ has an incredibly high hazard rating as a known human immune system toxicant.
- ‘methylisothiazolinone’ has been associated with allergic reactions and neurotoxicity.
While they say Babies Choice I’m fairly sure if babies could talk and they knew what these ingredients meant they wouldn’t choose to use these baby wipes. It’s up to us adults to make the RIGHT choice for them.
Even the eco friendly baby wipes with the biodegradable packaging contain propylene glycol. Propylene glycol is an alcohol commonly used as a skin conditioning agent. It has been associated with irritant and allergic contact dermatitis as well as contact urticaria in humans; these sensitization effects can be manifested at propylene glycol concentrations as low as 2%. (Information from: http://www.ewg.org).
Overuse of Baby Wipes
There was a story about a woman with OCD (obsessive compulsive disorder) who used baby wipes to clean every surface of her home, every day of the week, numerous times a day. She used baby wipes because they were convenient, just grab a wipe from the packet and off she goes cleaning her house, and also because she felt they had germ killing properties and was obsessed with wiping out germs around her home.
The OCD was the main topic, however, they did mention her recent doctors visit where it was found the lady had excessively high amounts of toxic build up in her system and thus her health was failing due to constant exposure to the toxic chemicals in the baby wipes. It surprised me that doctors are aware of the potential risk of over exposure to the chemicals in baby wipes (and other products) yet we hear next to nothing about it.
Limit Your Exposure
It’s fair to say most of us are most likely not using baby wipes in the same manner as this woman. We might clean a baby bottom a couple of times a day or use them randomly to wipe bird poo off our shoulder. The main point is: baby wipes do contain undesirable ingredients and it is important to limit your use of them or replace them altogether with a cloth and water.
Baby Wipe Recipe - make your own
* A rectangle container to put wipes in
* 1 tablespoon castile liquid soap
* 1 tablespoon calendula oil
* 1 cup pure water
* Cotton face washers, paper towels, or other suitable cloth.
* [optional] add a drop or 2 of lavender essential oil
Mix the liquid soap, calendula oil and water in a jar and shake well to amalgamate. Place cloths of choice into your chosen container and pour liquid over the cloths. You might need to ring the liquid out of the cloth prior to use. Note: there are no preservatives in this lotion, depending on how you store your cloths they could begin to smell damp after a little while.
An alternative is to store the lotion in a bottle and dampen cloth with some solution prior to changing baby bottom.