• How Clean Is Your Bath Towel?

    by Lifeboat Admin ,

    We count on our bath towels being clean and smelling nice. It can be quite disappointing to dry off with a towel that looks dirty or has a bad odour. But we shouldn't be surprised when it happens because many of us are making crucial mistakes.

    Towels Get Dirty

    Human beings lose between 30,000 to 40,000 skin cells every hour. When people towel off after a shower, many of those dead skin cells are left behind, particularly if the towel is damp. Bacteria love a wet environment and will grow on your towel is it isn't dried properly. The next time you use your towel you may be putting the bacteria on your own body.

    Some people are so bothered by the possibility of a bacteria-laden towel that they use a new one every time. But most dermatologists recommend changing towels once a week. However, if someone in the household is sick it is better to change towels every two to three days. That is because viruses can spread easily between towels. Of course, you should never share a towel with someone else because of the risk of spreading infection.


    Problem: Mildew

    You have probably noticed mildew on your shower curtain liner at one time or another. Mildew develops quickly in humidity. When mildew gets on your towels, bacteria will grow. Your towels will also begin to smell.

    Air needs to circulate to prevent humidity. Turn on the fan and open the windows when showering. Don’t turn the fan off until the bathroom is dry.


    Problem: Odour

    Even when towels look clean, they may not smell that way. Sometimes even towels fresh from the washer and dryer have an odour once they become damp. Often it is because the washing machine has soil and bacteria build-up that adheres to the towel while it is being cleaned. Front washers tend to become dirty even more often than top loaders because they use less water. Towels are particularly susceptible to odours because the fibre materials are made to be absorbent.

    Clean your washing machine thoroughly at least once a week. When you wash your towels, add 1 cup of white distilled vinegar to the machine instead of detergent. Also make sure towels are completely dry before putting them away.


    Problem: Stains

    It can be very frustrating to wash and dry a load of towels only to discover that they have stains. Bleach stains can come from acne medications left behind on your towels. If the fibres are bleached there is nothing you can do to restore the colour. If you use topical acne medications it is best to use white towels only. When your towels are stained brown or orange, make-up is usually the culprit.

    The stains will permanently set in during the drying cycle, so it is important to get them out during the wash cycle. Pre-treat them and wash in hot water. Don’t put the towels in the dryer until the stains are gone.

    Clean towels can carry odours. It is also possible to wash your towels and still be left with permanent stains that look terrible. But by keeping humidity levels down, cleaning your washing machine regularly, and pre-treating stains, you can ensure that you have fresh-smelling bright-looking towels every time.

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