A few months ago, I made some cloth wipes for the bathroom. I think there are landmarks in a journey to "crunchiness". For example, I felt like I crossed a line when I started making my own deodorant. This is another line into a whole new realm of crunchiness: reusable toilet paper. I know this will make some people gasp in horror. I get it, I really do. I had the same reaction when I first heard about this. "Why?!!" But I'm speaking from the other side now, and I am totally sold.
In our bathroom, I have a stack of cloth wipes in addition to regular old toilet paper. Whomever uses the bathroom is free to use whichever option suits them. It took me awhile to gear up to go for this, not because it grossed me out (I wash diapers and use cloth wipes for baby bottoms, so cloth wipes for the bathroom are NBD). I just had some trouble with the logistics of getting it off the ground. I will explain my system here in case you want to start a family cloth program in your house.
I made my cloth wipes from flannel cut with pinking shears. I used about a yard or two of flannel and made my wipes approximately 6"x8". I wasn't too exact with it, but you want to make sure they are large enough to comfortably cover your whole hand. They will shrink some. When I first made cloth wipes for baby, I made them too small and they didn't work very well. There are many ways to make wipes, but I like this no-sew method that is quick and easy. Yes, they will fray, and no, they won't look all uniform and pretty, but I don't really care. It gets the job done, and I'm not trying to win any awards for my cloth wipes. I probably have 50 wipes, which is plenty enough to never run out.
Using flannel on my bum is so much softer and nicer than toilet paper. It is also more effective and durable. I usually only need 1 wipe. During pregnancy when things were, erm, a bit dry/swollen, it was especially gentle. Postpartum was nice too, when you use the peri bottle and then pat dry–cloth is much nicer than paper for this purpose and holds up better. It is also easier to use cloth when wiping Penny's bum in the bathroom during potty learning. And since I am already washing diapers, it really is no more difficult for me.
The environmental effects of using cloth wipes may not seem too large, but think about all of the plastic wrapping on toilet paper that is just thrown away and can't be recycled. And think about all of the trees that are used to make toilet paper–mostly virgin forests, not recycled. And think about all of the chemicals and bleaching agents that are used to process that toilet paper. And think about all of the money you spend on toilet paper making big box stores rich. Make yourself rich instead. It adds up. And when you can make a green choice that is also a more luxurious/nicer choice for you, it is a total win win.