Make Your Own Swipes {Sanitizing Wipes}!


My family and I recently returned from a road trip to California (roughly 11 hours each way). We went to help my brother celebrate his wedding, but used that as an excuse to spend four days at the beach. :-) Heaven!

Before we left I decided to quickly make a batch of “Swipes” that I had just seen on my sister Rebecca’s website, Camp Wander. These Sanitizing Wipes are infused with Lavender & Lemon Essential Oils which not only make them wonderfully fragrant, but also have antibacterial, antiviral, and antiseptic properties! Perfect for a long car ride where we would be stopping several times and using suspect public facilities. :-)

Since I was pressed for time, I decided to make mine with baby wipes that I already had on hand (her version calls for using Bounty Quilted Napkins, another good option!).

Now I COULD have just put them in this less-than-lovely wipes container that came with the large box of wipes I had purchased at Costco….

sanitizing wipes


…but since I don’t actually have a baby…I always feel a little funny pulling this thing out. Plus, it’s not the most discreet or “fashionable” container. I’m weird about stuff like that.

I just happened to find these containers at Walmart when I was shopping for some travel size things for our trip. They are travel first aid kits that turned out to be the perfect size for my “swipes” (plus the few first aid items that came inside it I just transferred to my First Aid Car Kit!).

sanitizing wipes


How To Make Your Own Sani-Wipes:

Pile up folded baby wipes or halved napkins in a container with a lid.

Mix together:

1 1/2 C. very warm water
1 tablespoon coconut oil
1 teaspoon rubbing alcohol or vodka
3 drops Lavender essential oil
3 drops Lemon essential oil (I used Spark Naturals oils)

Make sure the coconut has melted into the water then pour the mixture onto the stack(s) of wipes. If you are using the baby wipes, you won’t need to use all of the liquid. But I would put it in a container to use later! I wish I had saved mine…we used both of my boxes of “swipes” on the trip TO California and I had to improvise with just the baby wipes and a few drops of oil for the car ride back!


The hubster, the kids, and myself all LOVED these things. They are sanitizing, softening and smell so good! You really feel like you’re doing something good for yourself…and you are. :-)

If you have any questions about essential oils…I would encourage you to check out Rebecca’s website or her blog. She has so many great ideas and so much information about the benefits of Essential Oils. She has definitely made me a believer! :-)


sanitizing wipes


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      • Cynthia says

        I’m absolutely addicted to the Lemon and Lavender air fresheners from Yankee Candle.
        Jill, I know you have a “recipe” for gel air fresheners, which I plan to try…but I wonder if you could find one to make the little ones that you can hang from your rear-view to freshen up the car? That would be a FABULOUSLY Good Thing!

  1. says

    can you tell me where you can find essential oils at a cheaper price ? I checked out the site you have listed . I recently lost my job and can not pay $23.00 and up for a bottle .I need several differant kind of oils . thank you

  2. Deborah Jennings says

    Jill, you can cover the wipes box. My DIL covered a small one to keep her little girl’s smaller toys in and one has her son’s hot wheel cars in it. Also good for other things, too.

    I do use baby wipes, and/or the flushable wipes here at home. I have even bought the travel size wipes to keep in the car. They now have them with the pop up lids and they stay moist for a long time. I just bought a package of 3 like that for around $5. They are also good for sticky hands in the car, as well as taking make-up off when traveling and even at home. I really need to get out my hot glue gun, some batting and fabric and cover a couple of boxes.

  3. Patti White says

    I have to be careful with the coconut oil since I’m sensitive to coconut….what would be a good substitute? Maybe grapeseed oil? I’m not overly fond of the scent of olive oil, so that’s out for me.

  4. Gigi says

    I have made baby wipes but never thought to make wipes for “me”. We are going camping this weekend so I am going to make some with just orange essential oil. Thanks for posting this!! Just an fyi – I buy my essential oils from Elements Bath and Body online. I have bought supplies from there for a long time. Prices are very reasonable and she ships really fast!

  5. Ronda K says

    you could also look up how to make baby wipes homemade out of paper towels and use this recipe and turn them into a larger supply of santi-wipes. Use the small containers for on the go and the larger one for refilling and home use, especially if you have kids!

  6. Carolyn says

    I really like this idea and made some to keep in the car. I especially like the combination of lavender and lemon. I made a spritz of 1/2 oz. water and a few drops of each oil and use it on the bed before I make it to freshen the sheets and pillows between changes. It only takes a little with a fine mist sprayer but I can still smell it when I pull the sheets back at night.

  7. Irena Marchu says

    How do you keep germs. mold and bacteria at bay with that much water? There is not enough essential oil in this (and there shouldn’t be due to baby’s sensitive skin) to help preserve this. You have alcohol in this, but you would need it at least at a 20% of the total recipe to preserve this. Couldn’t you buy a more natural version of this in a health food store? Isn’t your baby worth it?

  8. says

    Will 70 % or 91% rubbing alcohol work better I have 91 % on hand. So glad I already had Lavender and lemon essential oils on hand. I’m going to try this with heavy duty paper towels instead of baby wipes having chemicals in them. I just need to buy coconut oil and see how well these turn out.

  9. Angie says

    I think these sound amazing!! To save money and make them a bit safer, I would probably make a few small adjustments. First, I would purchase a cheap pack of wipes. As you mentioned Jillee buying a bulk pack of wipes is probably cheaper (and less time consuming) than buying paper towels and having to fold them all. However, using wipes concerns me on what ingredients are used on them. I would probably boil the wipes, (keeping them in a stack) changing the water once or twice to get as much of the chemicals out as possible. After letting them cool I would press as much of the liquid out of them as possible while they are still stacked. I think that would allow them to receive more of your mixture. I might also change the rubbing alcohol to witch hazel. On a final note, you could make them reusable and use baby wash cloths instead of baby wipes or paper towels. Thank you for another great idea, Jillee!

  10. Jamie says

    I was just making a batch of these to take on vacation with us tomorrow and my daughter walked in and asked what that wonderful smell was! I’m glad i made a big batch in a ziplock container and kept all the extra liquid in case we need it. Spending the next week in the car means we will need them all of course.

    During the school year I practically live in my car as well. These would be nice to keep on hand then too. I’ll need a small case like yours then though.

  11. Vanessa says

    Hi Jillee, I’d like to try making these but I was wondering if it would be okay to use witch hazel instead of the rubbing alcohol and if so, would I keep the amount the same? Also, is it safe to store these in plastic? I read somewhere that EO’s shouldn’t be stored in plastic containers. Thanks!

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