Sunday, 3 March 2013

Baby Wipes on Shabbos

Question: Can we use baby wipes on Shabbos?
Answer: Squeezing a wet sponge on Shabbos is forbidden because of sechita. There is a lot of debate as to whether this poses a problem for using baby wipes, too.
R' Yitzchak Yaakov Weiss (Minchas Yitzchak 10:25) forbids using baby wipes. Likewise, R' Pesach Eliyahu Falk maintains that as the very purpose of baby wipes is to squeeze out liquid for a constructive purpose, one cannot claim that one isn’t transgressing on sechita.
Some recommend only using wetter wipes, as the liquid is less absorbed and won’t need to be squeezed out (See The 39 Melochos, Ribiat, p352), while others only permit the drier wipes. R' Yechezkel Roth gave a hechsher to a brand that manufactured their wipes from man-made materials, such as polyester, as opposed to cotton (gidulei karka) which would be more problematic.
R' Yehoshua Neuwirth (Shemiras Shabbos Kehilchasa 14:33, note 94) quotes R' Shlomo Zalman Auerbach as permitting their use. R' Ephraim Greenblatt (Rivevos Ephraim 6:194:3; 7:118) and R’ Ovadia Yosef (Yalkut Yosef Kitzur Shulchan Aruch 320:38) write that it is okay to use baby wipes, though one shouldn’t press on them too hard, causing extra liquid to be extracted. R' Simcha Bunim Cohen writes (Children In Halacha p111) that they are only  forbidden if after using the wipes on one’s skin, there is enough moisture to wet another who touches the skin.
In conclusion, while there are stricter authorities who advise using tissues with water or lotion, many rely on the more lenient authorities. Care must be taken not to tear perforated wipes.

No comments:

Post a Comment