How Often Should You Clean Bath Towels?

Written by marie jones
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How Often Should You Clean Bath Towels?
Clean bath towels twice weekly. (striped towel 1 image by dana nicolescu from

Even a towel you use only for drying yourself can harbour invisible bacteria. Proper care and cleaning of bath towels is essential to decrease bathroom germs. Bath towels can harbour viruses and infections and are an ideal conductor for mould development. Wash bath towels used at the gym or in a locker room after each use to kill germs, and clean bath towels used only at home at least twice a week.

New Towels

Clean all new towels before you use them. Even towels that come plastic-wrapped may have been handled by a variety of people who did not wash their hands before touching the towel. Thoroughly washing and drying a towel before use ensures that it is germ- and bacteria-free.

Daily Use

Hang your towel to dry after each use. Allow the towel to dry completely before you use it again. Avoid tossing a damp towel on the floor or in a pile where it could sit for several days before being washed. Damp towels can increase your risk of bathroom mould development, so take a few minutes to hang your towel. If your bathroom does not have a hook or towel rack, lay your towel over your shower curtain rod to dry. Also note that many facial cleansers can cause your towels to fade, so consider designating a specific towel to use while washing your face.


Wash your bath towels in a washing machine with hot water. Use regular detergent for everyday bath towels, but avoid using fabric softener. Fabric softener decreases the absorbency of your towels, rendering them useless.


Dry your towels on a clothes line or alone in a dryer. Avoid drying towels with other clothing, since towels require more time to dry. It is safe to use dryer sheets with your towels if you desire a fresh, vibrant scent.


Fold your towels and store them neatly. Whether you store your towels in your bathroom or in a linen closet, ensure that the area is dry and free from humidity, as this can promote mould growth.

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