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It’s a Wash: Incontinence Washcloths and Wipes
Many people are familiar with “baby wipes” – those thin, premoistened washcloths used to clean the skin at diaper changes. Not much bigger than the moist towelettes you get at fast food restaurants, they do a basic job in cleaning up messes, but aren’t quite up to the task of cleaning an adult-sized person.
That’s why we have adult washcloths and wipes!
Unlike baby wipes, which are typically 7 x 5.5”, adult washcloths are a more substantial 12” x 8”, giving the user or caregiver a larger surface area for cleaning. And adult washcloths tend to be a little thicker and stronger, allowing for better grip on solid waste.
Why use incontinence washcloths?
While most modern incontinence briefs and underwear do a great job of wicking moisture away from the skin, prolonged exposure to trace amounts of urine cause the skin to breakdown.
Urine has a different pH than skin and damages the natural balance of the perineal area, making it more prone friction and infection. And when combined with bowel incontinence, be particularly wary, as stool introduces gut bacteria on the skin, exacerbating the problem.
That’s where washcloths come in – they wipe away the remainders of urine on the skin and allow the skin to retain its natural pH level. And many washcloths also contain “skin-smart” properties like moisturizers, barrier lotions and natural additives like aloe and chamomile to sooth and protect the skin.
Healthwick’s Picks for Top Washcloths
Best Value Washcloth
To get the most bang for your buck, we suggest the Abena Unscented Moist Cleansing Wipes at $5.99 for a package of 80. This gentle washcloth is 100% compostable and free of allergens, and is completely scent-free.
Softest Dry Washcloth
Not everyone likes a pre-moistened washcloth. Whether you simply prefer to use water to clean the skin or you’re using them to apply a separate cream or lotion for skin protection, dry washcloths are preferred by many.
We recommend the Prevail Dry Washcloth. Unlike other dry washcloths which are paper-based and prone to tearing, this material-based washcloth is both soft and strong. In testing, we had a hard time tearing it in any direction, making it ideal for tidying up stubborn messes. Just $4.99 for a package of 48.
Biggest Incontinence Washcloth
We mentioned that most adult washcloths are 12” x 8”, but the Tranquility Personal Cleansing Wipes are a larger 13” x 9” size. They boast that you can even use them as a bathing product and clean the entire body in as little as 8 wipes. They have a moderate price point at a little over $7 per package of 50, but we think it’s well worth it if you need a larger cleaning surface.
Most Flushable Washcloth
Did you know that incontinence and baby wipes are one of the leading causes of main-line sewer problems in cities? That’s because they’re not intended to be flushed like toilet paper, as their strong fibre construction causes them to get caught in the turbines that break up sewer waste underground.
So this is a trick category, as there really is only one product that is certified flushable by the National Sanitation Foundation – the TENA Ultra Flushable Washcloth. Unlike other washcloths, this one is designed to breakdown easily once flushed and will not cause sewer backups, but does come with a slightly higher price point at just over $10 per package of 48.
Overall Best Premium Washcloth
Sometimes, you just want the best – the softest, the most absorbent, and the best ingredients. For this reason, we put the Prevail Premium Quilted Washcloths at the top of our list.
Most washcloths have a flat surface, but these premium washcloths feature a thicker, quilted texture that is great for cleaning solid waste without feeling like sandpaper. They’re also hypoallergenic and we like the easy-open lid that pops open at the touch of a finger and closes tightly to stop the wipes from drying out over time.
You can buy Prevail Premium Quilted Washcloths for $5.99 per package of 48 OR for a limited time until February 9th, get a package free when you spend $75 or more at Healthwick!