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Posted by Bridget Reed
USEFUL TIPS

How Often Should You Change Your Towels?

5 min read

When it comes to household chores, everyone’s list is unique. Not only is it likely that household tasks are divided amongst cohabiting family, friends, or roommates, but certain people have different requirements in the hygiene department. One person’s messy room may be another person’s ready-for-company tidy, so it’s safe to say that to-do lists can vary.

That said, there’s a difference between tidy and dirty. And when it comes to changing things like bed linens and towels, while there’s a little bit of preference involved so far as how often you change them, it is important to know the hows and the whys of changing out your linens frequently.

Why Do You Need to Change Your Towels Frequently?

To put it mildly, handling your towels and their changeover properly is an important part of personal hygiene. Your towel comes into contact with your bare skin at some critical moments. 

Presence of Lingering Bacteria 

For instance, after washing your hands, you probably dry your hands off on a towel. Studies have shown that even after washing your hands properly, bacteria can still be transferred to towels after usage.

That means that while your hand towel may look pristine hanging in your bathroom, it still picks up residual bacteria and impurities from your hands after washing, which can pose a genuine risk to your health if you leave it there for too long.

But what about towels that you use to dry yourself off after bathing? Surely there aren’t that many bacteria transferred to the towel in that case, right?

Well, there’s another problem. When you use a towel to dry yourself, it absorbs all of that excess water. While this is its job, it means your towel is likely hanging somewhere damp for a good amount of time after use.

That’s primetime for bacteria to breed, and damp towels are the perfect environment for them to do so. It can be an environment conducive to mold and other less-than-desirable things you probably don’t want to rub all over your body.

Aggravated Acne and Other Skin Conditions

If the idea of drying your hands or body with mold- or bacteria-laden fabric isn’t enough to convince you, think about your skin. Your body is covered in millions of pores, and clogged pores are one of the leading causes of acne and breakouts.

While there are probably other things that lead to back acne and breakouts elsewhere on your body, it’s totally possible that not washing your towels frequently enough can lead to issues with your skin.

The irritants contained in dirty towels can also trigger flare-ups of pre-existing skin conditions, such as eczema or atopic dermatitis.

Dirty towels cause issues with your skin, but they can also pose a legitimate risk to your health. If your towels are going too long without a spin cycle, they’re likely to develop yeasts, bacteria, molds — and even viruses. This can leave you with conditions like toenail fungus, athlete’s foot, jock itch, and warts.

Conditions like that tend to spread on contact. So if you share your bathroom or towels with a family member, friend, or roommate and you’re not cycling them out regularly, you can end up spreading these conditions to other people. 

How Often You Should Wash Your Towels: Just the Facts

Basically, you’ll want to be washing your bath towel at least once a week. Or at least you’ll want to be swapping it out — so if you haven’t moved beyond your college habit of keeping one rotating bath towel, now might be the time to stock up on some extra ones.

When it comes to washcloths or hand towels, you’ll want to be rotating those out twice a week, if not more. Hand towels especially are more likely to be in contact with certain germs and bacteria, so the more frequently you swap them out, the better, especially before and after you’ve had company.

In between washes, you can keep your towels fresher by storing them in a safe place to hang dry so that there are no dark, damp folds for mold and other gross things to proliferate. Simply tossing a bath towel onto the floor between washes or letting hand towels sit in a pile by your sink is not in anyone’s best interest. 

Wash Less With Antimicrobial Towels

Another great way to cut down on any risks posed by dirty towels is to swap out your old, tired linens for our anti-bacterial hand towels and bath towels. Our Miracle Made Towels are ultra-plush because they’re made from premium cotton, plus they’re also infused with a helpful not-so-secret ingredient: natural silver.

Natural silver helps our towels stay fresh for up to 3x longer. Silver can help to prevent up to 99.9% of odor-causing bacteria through a process of ionization. And you don’t have to sacrifice comfort one bit. Our towels are super soft, super thick, and dry in half the time of normal towels, making day-to-day care much easier while cutting down on your laundry time. 

Towel Protocol When Someone Is Sick

There are some exceptions to the frequency with which you wash your towels. If you or somebody in your household are sick, change out your towels after every use.

Viruses and germs can take hold and breed in damp materials, so it’s possible that you could pass on your illness from person to person with a dirty towel. You could also just ensure that each person in your household has their own towel so there’s no crossover (this can spare you a bit of laundry too).

This holds true for things like warts and certain funguses — you’ll want to keep the affected person’s towel separate from everybody else’s and wash it more frequently.

If your house or the current season is particularly humid, it’s a bright idea to wash your towels more frequently. Humidity can make it more difficult for towels to dry out, meaning mold and bacteria have a larger window to grow and potentially cause problems for you.

Another thing that merits more frequent washing is gym towels. If you’re using your towel to sop up sweat or dry yourself off after a strenuous workout, that’s definitely going to need to go into the wash as soon as possible.

Even if you only use your gym towel after you shower at the gym, you’ll want to wash that immediately, too, especially if you’re carrying it around in a gym bag where it’s more likely to become a breeding ground for germs, mold, and bacteria.

In Conclusion

While washing your towels frequently may not seem like a crisis situation, it’s actually a significant crucial part of personal hygiene. Especially if you live in a full household or share a space with multiple roommates, it’s important to change your towels regularly to avoid issues with your health and skin. 

Not everybody has the same requirements as far as how tidy they keep their house. But this is one area you shouldn’t take any shortcuts in. So if you want to cut down on the amount of laundry you do while keeping everything clean and hygienic, invest in towels that prevent bacteria so you don’t have to.

 

Sources:

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