I’m curious. How often do you wash towels?
I seem to wash 2 loads about every 10 days or so. I’d love to only wash one load a week. However, with our bath towels, kitchen towels, and wash cloths it seems I’m washing more and more towels.
Maybe this is just the way it is with a family of six? Or maybe it is the nature of children getting older? Or maybe it is because I generate a lot of kitchen towels since I cook so often?
I’d love to hear your thoughts on towel washing. Feel free to leave a comment telling me all about how often you wash towels or what your best tips are.
Update on Washing Towels Each Week
Update: November 30, 2019
I wrote this post 8 years ago when I had only four children, and they were all very little! ::sniff, sniff::
I find it interesting that I only washed 2 loads of towels every 10 days. Compared to now, that was a breeze!
I now wash three loads of towels a week.
Why do I wash more towels now?
Why the increase in towels for our family? I can think of several reasons that contribute to my increased towel washing as the laundress of our family.
- We added another child to our family. As of right now, my kiddos are 14, 12, 10, just turned 9, and 2 1/2. More people just means more towels.
- My children are older. My children just naturally go through more towels the older they get. They bathe more often in general, and my girls use a towel for their hair and a body towel.
- Towels are more accessible. We moved into a new home a year ago because we had outgrown our original home. With this lovely new house, we gained linen closets near each of our bathrooms, so towels are much more accessible.
In our previous home, we had no linen closets (!) so towels were more tucked away in our laundry room and more difficult to access.
- I cook most of our meals at home. When my children were younger, we ate out a few times a week. Now we eat almost all of our meals at home, and I cook a vast majority of breakfast and lunch, including a homemade dinner each night.
Lots of cooking = lots of dishtowels
What will my towel washing frequency look like in 8 more years? My kiddos will be 22, 20, 18, 16, and 10. That’s interesting to think about!
More on Washing Towels
I’ve written many posts on caring for and washing towels. If you need towel help, here’s where to look:
- Preventing Smelly Towels – How to prevent smelly towels once and for all
- Does My Washer Make My Towels Smell Soured? – A reader questions if it is her washing machine causing her towels to smell like mildew
- How to Revive Smelly Towels – Have towels that smell horrible, even when clean? Here’s how to fix them.
- Should You Wash Clothes with Towels & Sheets? – 3 reasons why you should not wash your clothes with towels & sheets
- How to Fold Bath Towels
- How to Fold Towels in French-Fold Style
Sometimes I am washing towels even more than once a week, especially now that beach towels are in the mix.
Oh yes – beach and pool towels! They definitely create more loads! ack!
I usually do about two loads per week. It just depends on how often I’m bathing the little ones. Our typical schedule is every other day, but if we’ve been outside and they’ve gotten especially dirty then I’ll bathe them every night.
I also do at least one smaller load of just kitchen towels during the middle of the week. But if we’ve had guests over or I’ve done a freezer cooking session then I might have to do two loads of kitchen towels.
I probably wash towels more often then most, but I’m a little weird about germs hiding out in them- especially the kitchen towels!
Ha! I’m weird too, because I wash a LOT of kitchen towels. Actually I own a ridiculous amount of kitchen towels because I go through them so quickly.
I’m not about food-borne illness, so I change them out frequently. 😉
We have 11 people in our family. 🙂
I generally wash towels of all types in with the jeans every day.
We cloth diaper, (I have gotten a lot of great info here, by the way) and most days we wash a load of diapers first, then on to a load of jeans and towels, then a load of either dark clothes or clothes to be bleached, depending on which there is more of. 🙂
I’m sure you’ve got your system down pat in your family of 11. 😉
Thanks for sharing your routine. I always love reading how other people do things in their own households!
I usually do about three loads per week. My dish towels are separate because I don’t like hair in my kitchen towels. I guess I am peculiar about that. Oh well.
I mix them in with our loads of clothes rather than doing them separately…is that bad?? The kids don’t take a bath every day so their bath towels don’t need to be washed as often as ours and I throw kitchen towels in as soon as I’m done with them (our laundry area is off the kitchen)….BTW this is Lisa from the sov grace co-op 🙂
Lisa! Hey Girlie! Thanks so much for stopping by. 🙂
It’s not bad as long as 1) you don’t wash the towels with any clothes that are polyester-ish. The towels will lint all over them if you do and it is a serious pain to de-lint something and 2) You don’t wash really soiled towels with just moderately dirty clothes. It’s best to wash heavily soiled items with heavily soiled items.
For example, I cleaned off our porch furniture with old rags and they got horribly dirty. Silly me, I just threw them in with the rest of the towel load. ALL of my towels came out with dirt stains on them and had to soak and soak to get them clean again. I will never do that again! Live and learn!
I say if it works for your routine, keep at it. 😉
In our house we reuse our bath towels at least twice. We hang them up so they stay dry and clean. But I still do a load of towels (hand towels, wash cloths, dish towels) probably the same as you, 2 loads every 8-10 days.
That’s exactly what we do too, not surprisingly! 🙂
I am SO glad I stumbled across your blog! Looking forwarding to diggin in to your past posts and seeing what is to come as well 🙂
Hey Allison! Thanks for stopping by 🙂
Some may think we are really gross, but I find that American in general are far too clean conscious. We use towels for probably four or five days before washing them. The stink test is the litmus. When they smell funny, they get washed. I figure that you’re using them to DRY off a clean body/hair, so they aren’t really “dirty.” We don’t use wash cloths or hand towels at all (except for guests).
I do use a lot of kitchen towels and aprons. (I don’t use many paper towels.) And because those deal with FOOD, I am very picky about their being clean.
Ok, I am late to this party, but I just found your website, which I love by the way. This question is tricky for me. I would say if I did laundry when I was supposed to and didn’t let it pile up, I would be washing towels at least twice a week. Dish towels and rags maybe 3 times a week. The other question that goes along with this one is how many times do you use a towel before you count it dirty?
bath – 3 uses
hand – 1-2 days
dish – 1 day
rag – 1 day or until it gets grubby (whichever is first)
beach – 1 day if it goes to the Y, when it gets grubby if it is just at home
We have 5 people in our house so one trip to the Y or local swimming hole could produce an entire load. I also cook at home mainly so dish towels and rags get used heavily. I even had to make a bunch out of old hand towels. If I don’t plan to wash them I try to hang them up outside on the back porch to dry so they don’t stink or get moldy while they wait.
I wash two loads of towels each week too. And I consider them to be “dirty” in about the same amount of time as you also. There are the exceptions of course, but your list is pretty typical for me too.
I don’t like washing towels that often, but the ick factor motivates me to get them done! I hate using gross dish towels. 🙂
Hello ladies!! Just stumbled across this site looking for laundry tips and I love it!! It is so real and down to earth!! I had a few extra moments before bed and thought I would see if I could find some laundry tips for myself. I am 28 yrs old and we have a family of 4. I have been married for 8 years and from day 1 my laundry has been backed up:( I always blamed it on work and school, but now I have not worked since March and it all looks the same! LOL I guess i just hate to do it. I would rather scrub the floor on my hands and knees. Ill clean my whole house and then go for laundry if Im still up for anything. Any tips or encouraging words of wisdom for me? I need some routine or a system with these endless pile!!
Aulbrey, here is a good place to start:
How to Start a Laundry Routine
I can’t find where anyone asks exactly how to wash towels. Our towels are just not soft and fluffy. What’s the secret? I did some research and found that you should use vinegar and baking soda in addition to your detergent, but that really doesn’t seem to help. So what is your advice? I also stopped using drying sheets entirely, and now just have the wool dryer balls. Thanks in advance for your help.