Dirty Little Secrets Survey Uncovers Messy Moments in Motherhood

Moms-on-the-Go Resort to Clothes, Gloves and Even Pets To Clean up Food and Other Spills

Oct 11, 2011, 10:15 ET from Kimberly-Clark Professional

PHILADELPHIA, Oct. 11, 2011 /PRNewswire/ -- Life is challenging enough for moms-on-the-go. But when confronted with spills, soils and other messes, many moms have been forced to resort to desperate measures.

For an unlucky few, cleanup has required the use of a dress, business suit or even the family pet.

In fact, in a survey released today by VIVA® On-the-Go Napkins, 88 percent of moms with children age 10 or under reported using something other than the typical towel or napkin to clean up these mishaps.  Forty-four percent of those surveyed said this happens "all the time."

"Moms today are in perpetual motion, with meals and other activities taking place in the car, on the soccer field and so many places outside the home," said Michele Neher, associate marketing manager for the Kimberly-Clark Home Professional Business.  "Cleaning up can be a challenge when you're on-the-go and don't have what you need to tackle tough messes."  

As for these messes, what are the most common culprits?  The list reads like a cornucopia of childhood crud with runny noses on top, followed by throw up, melting ice cream, potty accidents, ketchup, blood and pet messes.  

You Wiped with What?

When asked about the strangest thing they had ever used to clean up a child's messy face, hands, spill or other mishap while on-the-go, 61 percent of moms cited their clothes. This was followed by a scarf or gloves (17 percent), an article of clothing with the tags still on (3 percent), and the aforementioned dress or business suit and pet (each at 1 percent).

Being without the proper cleanup tools in these situations can also be costly. What was the most expensive item ruined or damaged by a child-sized mess?  Furniture topped the list, followed by clothing, carpeting, and the family car.  

On the Road

Of all the places where unexpected messes can occur, the car seems to take the cake.  Eighty-eight percent of moms said their children consumed food in the car at some point, with:

  • 55 percent eating there once a week.
  • 25 percent doing so three to five times a week.
  • 8 percent eating in the car every day.

When asked how frequently their kids made a mess in the car, more than half said it was when their children have "food or drink," while 29 percent said it was only during long car trips.  Nearly a quarter said their kids made a mess "every time they're in it."    

When in-car messes do occur, what are young children most apt to do?  Wipe the gunk on their clothes, according to 64 percent of respondents. This was followed by wiping it on the car seat or another soft object (36 percent), or calling for help (33 percent). Six percent of moms said their kids smeared their mess on a sibling.  For one percent it was bad news for Fido, as some children were reported to have used the family pet for this purpose.

Moms who were driving when these incidents occurred have faced mishaps of their own including:

  • Missing an exit or turn (31 percent)
  • Forgetting where they were going (15 percent)
  • Being pulled over for reckless driving (2 percent)
  • Getting into an accident (1 percent)  

A Solution at Hand

To tackle such turmoil, Kimberly-Clark recently introduced portable VIVA® On-the-Go Napkins in a pop-up box.  The napkins are soft on hands and faces, yet strong enough to clean up messes and spills. They can be stored in the car or carried to barbecues, picnics, parties, tailgating events and other activities. VIVA® On-the-Go Napkins are available at Walmart Superstores nationwide for a suggested retail price of $3.48.  For coupons and store locations, visit www.vivatowels.com or www.facebook.com/vivatowels for coupons and store locations.

Survey Methodology

This survey was conducted among a sample of 1,000 mothers who currently have a child 10 years of age or younger by ORC International on behalf of the VIVA® On-the-Go Napkins. Respondents were 18 years of age and older.  Interviewing for this survey was completed during the period from August 31–September 5, 2011.  Respondents were selected from among those who have volunteered to participate in online surveys and polls.

About Kimberly-Clark

Kimberly-Clark and its well-known global brands are an indispensable part of life for people in more than 150 countries. Every day, 1.3 billion people - nearly a quarter of the world's population - trust K-C brands and the solutions they provide to enhance their health, hygiene and well-being. With brands such as Kleenex, Scott, Huggies, Pull-Ups, Kotex and Depend, Kimberly-Clark holds the No. 1 or No. 2 share positions in more than 80 countries.

© 2011 KCWW

SOURCE Kimberly-Clark Professional