Products you need, products you don’t

Our parent reviewers tell us what works, what doesn’t






Kandoo Flushable Wipes and Foaming Handsoap $3.99 for 50 wipes $3.49 for 8.4 ounces of soap

Our children (ages 3 and 5) recently tested Kandoo Flushable Wipes and Fresh Splash Foaming Handsoap. The Pampers’ marketing material notes that the “kid-friendly designs” will “empower kids to master the bathroom basics.” Here’s the take of one highly-motivated potty trainer and his big sister:

The handsoap pump is colorful, sturdy and easy to depress. The kids loved the foaming soap—no need to lather, easy to rinse. However, the scent was much too strong. Thankfully, between heavy sink use and being added to all their “science experiments,” the eight ounces were gone in a week.

The wipes are marketed as flushable; however, the fine print notes they should not be used in basement toilets with ejector pumps. We live in a 100-year-old house with finicky plumbing and had just finished the kids’ “nothing but TP down the potty” training, so we didn’t want to confuse them with “… but these are OK to flush.” So, in a very unscientific study, the kids and I spent days trying to dissolve them in buckets of water (didn’t work). We ended up letting the kids test the wipes, but then escorted used wipes outside to the garbage bin (messy work, not advised).

The Kandoo wipes did not clean as well as moistened toilet paper or our usual brand of fragrance-free wipes. They left behind a soapy film and strong scent, which limited their use on faces and hands. I would not recommend them for children with allergies or sensitive skin as I cringe at the toll repeated use might have on tender skin.

On the positive side, the kids liked the bright purple pop-top box. They were able to open it and dispense wipes with ease. However, they often forgot to shut the cover, leaving the next wipe to dry out. They went through 50 wipes in just seven days, which adds up to more than $200 a year and a considerable environmental impact with all that fancy packaging.

I checked out the Kandoo Web site, which is designed to “offer fun ways to empower kids and encourage parents” with bathroom hygiene issues. However, it is really just a flashy advertisement for their products. Since we feel kids are already bombarded with product promos, we chose not to have our 5-year-old navigate it.

In summary, our kids enjoyed the novelty of these colorful products, but the cons—high cost, environmental toll, heavy fragrance, questionable flushable nature—outweighed the pros. Our children happily returned to regular toilet paper and a bar of unscented Dove at the end of the week. The cool pop-top box is now used to store their treasures.

Susie Donohue and Jude Nosek, Oak Park

Kids Eat Chicago

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