A Trusted Friend in a Complicated World

16 Genius Uses for Baby Wipes You Never Thought to Try

Forget wiping baby bums! Create scent sachets, clean your pet, craft a travel jewelry box, and more.

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milk spilled from glass on oak wooden surface
Sascha Burkard/Shutterstock

Use baby wipes for quick, on-the-move cleanups

Baby wipes can be used for more than just cleaning babies’ bottoms. They’re great for wiping your hands after pumping gas, mopping up small spills in the car, and cooling your sweaty brow after a run. In fact, wipes make ideal travel companions—just like these items that help you keep your car organized. Next time you set off on the road, pack a small stack of baby wipes in a tightly closed self-sealing sandwich bag and put it in the glove compartment of your car or in your purse or knapsack.

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Set of men's shoes. Wooden background

Shine your shoes and purse

Many moms know that a baby wipe does a pretty good job of brightening a kiddo’s white leather shoes. But did you ever think of using one to put the shine back in your leather pumps or pocketbook—especially with that 10 a.m. meeting fast approaching? According to Sean Parry, a cleaning expert for Neat Services, baby wipes are actually perfect for cleaning all types of leather—including your sofa! “The beauty of wet wipes is that they don’t contain any nasty chemicals that could discolor leather. So they’re very effective at wiping any dirt or stains on leather sofas for example. Simply wipe over the area in question a couple of times and any superficial stains should be easily removed,” instructs Parry. Not to mention baby wipes “also give a great shine once dry!”

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Kitchen Cabinet Doors

Recycle as dust cloths

Who knew? Some brands of baby wipes—Huggies, for instance—can be laundered and reused as dust cloths and cleaning rags for when you straighten up. According to Nathan Ripley, Director of MaidJustRight, you can also “just leave used baby wipes to dry. Once dry, they’re a great cloth for removing dust and any other bothersome particles from your living space.” It probably goes without saying, but only mildly soiled wipes should be considered candidates for laundering. Here are other tips for dust-proofing your house.

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Spilled coffee on the carpet
Stephen VanHorn/Shutterstock

Remove stains from carpet and upholstery

If you’re someone who loves to decorate with light colors but is also prone to stains, you definitely need to stock up on baby wipes. According to Sean Parry, “if you have clothing or furniture that are stained in any way, add a little washing-up liquid to a baby wipes and apply to the area in question.” This is a much cheaper option than heavy-duty stain removal products, and “you’ll find that more often than not that it does the job.” With baby wipes on-hand, not all stains are fatal to your furniture!

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A aluminum(grey) desktop personal computer(PC) with wireless keyboard, mouse on the wood table(desk) isolated white.
Early Spring/Shutterstock

Clean your keyboard

Believe it or not, cleaning expert Sean Parry has found that computer keyboards are one of the dirtiest items in your home. “The intricate buttons and regular usage (often whilst eating or drinking) means that food and grease are often trapped within the crevices,” he says. Periodically shaking out your computer’s keyboard is a good way to get rid of the dust and debris that gathers underneath and in between the keys. But that’s just half the job. “Make sure you regularly give these a quick wipe with the baby wipe, and any grease build-up will be minimized,” Parry instructs. Before wiping the keys, however, be sure your device is powered down.

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makeup products

Remove makeup

Most of the time, makeup is a lifesaver—covering unwanted blemishes, concealing deep bags under our eyes, and giving our features an extra pop. However, there’s nothing more frustrating than having to spend time scrubbing your face clean of beauty products after a long, tiring day. That’s why  Molly Maid, a Neighborly company and the nation’s leading residential cleaning service, suggests using baby wipes to quickly remove your makeup. This will save you time, energy, and the extra wash you would otherwise have to do after staining a hand towel with eyeliner!

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Close up sunscreen ,sun block on man's arm

Soothe your skin

Did you get a bit too much sun at the beach? You can temporarily cool a sunburn by gently patting the area with a baby wipe. If that doesn’t do the trick, try one of these home remedies for sunburn. Baby wipes can also be used to treat cuts and scrapes. Although most wipes don’t have any antiseptic properties, there’s nothing wrong with using one for an initial cleansing before applying the proper topical treatment.

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Freshen up your drawers

To make lightly scented sachets for your dresser drawers, cut baby wipes into squares and add a few drops of your favorite essential oil. The squares will keep your dresser smelling fresh and prevent your clothes from taking on a woody scent.

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Golden Retriever eating

Put an end to pet fur

Rub down your cat or dog with a baby wipe to stop shedding fur in its tracks. The wipe’s moisture will attract loose fur and leave your pet smelling fresh. When cleaning dust, Sean Parry recommends using the moisture of baby wipes to trap the dust. This technique is similarly effective for pet hair, which can be quickly collected from the floor using damp baby wipes. Baby wipes are gentle enough to use on their paws too, so keep a container near your entryway to assist with cleanup on rainy or snowy days.

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Shirts dirty caused by roll- on deodorant on wooden background

Erase deodorant marks on clothes

If you pull a sweater on only to find it covered in deodorant streaks, give it a once over with a slightly wet baby wipe. In addition to remedying carpet blemishes, cleaning expert Sean Parry says that baby wipes can often remove clothing stains too. All you have to do is blot your clothing with a moist baby wipe and watch the white streak disappear!

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View from window car with sunlight - travel Concept

Clean car windows

Pigeon poop all over your windshield? Rub car windows clean with the baby wipes stashed in your glove compartment.

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White baby wipes, tissue box, wet wipes in green package box on wooden table with copy space background.
Stella Photography/Shutterstock

Recycle your baby wipe containers

Don’t toss those empty baby wipe packages just yet. Consider rinsing them out and crafting a first aid kit for your car or a travel jewelry box. The container will keep everything in one place and you won’t feel guilty if it breaks or cracks from being tossed around. Not to mention the fact that this fix is environmentally friendly!

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non stick frying pan on wooden background
Naruedom Yaempongsa/Shutterstock

Degrease your frying pans

According to cleaning expert Sean Parry, “burnt on food grease can be really difficult to remove, especially if it’s left overnight after cooking.” Instead of spending countless minutes scrubbing at the dried grease with a sponge, just “keep a ready supply of baby wipes on your kitchen worktop and remember to give the pan a quick wipe down once it’s cooled,” Parry recommends. This “will make washing up significantly easier as the wipes pick up and absorb the grease from the pan surface rather than simply moving it around.” More good news? Without a soapy sponge to splash you, using baby wipes will keep your hands much cleaner.

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Face skin of women sweating after exercise.

Cool down on a hot day

This genius way to use baby wipes is great for sweaty, summer days when even the A.C. can’t cool you down! All you have to do is put some baby wipes in the fridge, let them cool down, and apply them to your skin. According to Caleb Backe, a health expert for Maple Holistics, “you can even throw a pack in the cooler when having a BBQ, tailgate, or camping trip,” for a quick way to cool off at an exciting event. Plus, “while outside of the house, baby wipes are a quick, easy, and inconspicuous way to cool down and freshen up.” Say goodbye to embarrassing sweat stains!

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Many plant selling in greenhouse.

Clean kitchen plants

Just like all surfaces in your home, both real and fake plants can get dusty over a long period of time. According to Cyrus Bedwyr, a cleaning expert at Fantastic Services, “baby wipes are a great product that can help you make their leaves shiny again and freshen them up.” To clean your plants, just swipe a baby wipe over the leaves and let the moisture collect the dust!

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Lonely travel by airplane to somewhere, Journey for business by airplane and see out of the window, Sky view from air travel on high level, Airplane interior for first class level and support VIP.

Staying healthy on a plane

While everyone knows there are germs on airplanes, you may not realize how many things planes don’t clean as they should. If you don’t want to catch a cold on a flight, you might want to pack some baby wipes in your carry-on bag. Baby wipes are Building Biologist and expert in natural cleaning solutions Corinne Segura’s secret to never getting sick on a plane. Once you sit down, clean the area around you with a baby wipe to remove some of the germs. Segura also suggests wiping your hands with baby wipes before you eat and even blotting your face to cool down and freshen up.

Originally Published in Reader's Digest International Edition