Whenever people go to the supermarket to do some grocery shopping, most of them automatically check the expiration date before putting it into their shopping carts.
Needless to say, people are even more diligent while buying products for a baby or toddler. It is essential to watch out for expiry date or best before date– but some products like baby wipes do not display an expiry date on their packages.
So, do baby wipes expire? Technically, baby wipes don’t have an expiration date, but a shelf life. Most brands have a shelf life of at most two years, provided they remain unopened. However, the shelf life of opened baby wipes changes depending on storage conditions and the brand and type of wipes you use.
What Happens If Baby Wipes Reach Their Shelf Life?
So, do baby wipes expire? – Not really, but there are a lot of things that can happen when baby wipes have crossed their shelf life:
Baby Wipes Dry Out
Baby wipes contain water along with other natural preservatives. Sometimes, even when your package is sealed properly, the water can evaporate through small gaps to dry out the wipes, making them too dry to be used on your baby’s soft skin.
Baby wipes contain more than 95% water; thus, proper storage is important to retain that water. However, even in properly sealed packages, the water might still evaporate and leave the wipes dry and ineffective to use.
Baby Wipes Become Less Usable
Wipes contain moisturizing oils and soapy water to help in cleansing, but these components breakdown with time and lose their potency, especially if they already have passed their shelf life. Sometimes, these ingredients might also collect at the bottom of the package, leaving them ineffective and unfit to use.
While the soapy consistency of the wipes might still be present, it is difficult to check its moisturizing ability. So if you feel that the pack looks unfit to use, then it is better to throw it in your dustbin or use it for other cleaning purposes.
Molds are fungal colonies that grow even in the unopened pack of baby wipes. Natural ingredients draw in more contamination and fungal growth. Even the most sanitized wipes might still yield contamination, and in such cases, discard the wipes immediately.
Can You Still Use Expired Wipes?
Actually, even an expired pack of baby wipes might still be safe to use. However, do rotate your stock of wipes because even if the answer to the question do baby wipes expire is a no, they still might deteriorate in quality.
Manufacturers add some chemicals, preservatives, and natural ingredients to the baby wipes to inhibit bacterial and fungal growth. That means the safety of wipes depends on the manufacturer and what they’re made with. While wipes with added chemicals might still be safe to use after the expiration date, wipes with natural ingredients have a bigger risk of mold accumulation. So it would be best to discard those wipes since using infected wipes might expose your baby to allergies and infections.
What is the Shelf Life of Unopened Baby Wipes?
Most unopened wipe packages have a shelf life of about two to three years. As mentioned earlier, no is the answer to the question do baby wipes expire; however, they might turn dry, ineffective, or even develop mold.
Once the baby wipes are opened, they remain fresh for up to a year, provided that you seal them properly and keep away from sunlight and heat. Store the wipes after opening, to prevent the water content of the wipes to evaporate. It is recommended to store wipes at room temperature.
Can I Add Water to Rehydrate Wipes?
Absolutely! Dried out wipes can be hydrated by adding distilled water. Mix a cup of distilled water, add a few drops of lavender oil (or whatever essential oil you prefer), add two tablespoons of baby oil, and add a tablespoon of baby wash.
Stir the mixture gently to prevent bubbles. Pour your mix over the dried pack of wipes and seal the package properly. Give the package a good shake and leave it for a few minutes.
Add enough liquid to wet all the wipes evenly. Too much liquid can leak out of the packet and will result in messy dripping wipes. Alternatively, you can store the mixture in a spray bottle and spray it on the dry wipes before using them.
Baby wipes are an absolute must, especially when you have a baby at home. They are convenient, easy to use, and disposable. They are also multifunctional in the sense that you can use them to clean other baby stuff. However, if you have too much stock of baby wipes and are asking, do baby wipes expire? You don’t need to worry since the answer is no. Just keep in mind to store your wipes properly. If they lapsed the intended shelf life and become too dry, you can re-hydrate them to use it again. However, always be cautious when utilizing dried out wipes. Misuse can cause harm and might introduce your baby to allergies and other health issues. Get more tips on baby wipes.