How Often Should You Wash Your Towels? The Answer Is More Than You Think

All my life, I've always been really diligent about maintaining good hygiene. However, when it comes to how often you should wash your towels, I sort of fail. I mean, am I the only one who doesn't care about using the same towel they did last week? Plus, who wants a big pile of towels in their laundry sack? However, the truth is that washing your towels is a priority you should always keep at the top of your to-do list. After learning why, it's become a must for me!

The Huffington Post explained, "For bath towels, the experts we spoke with recommend washing after about three uses to remove millions (yes, tens of millions) of dead skin cells and avoid that musty scent." And what causes that musty scent? Tons of bacteria breeding. I know, so gross.

As for face towels, you should be washing these after every single use. Buzzfeed spoke with Kelly A. Reynolds, Ph.D., an environmental health science professor at the University of Arizona, and she told them, "“When used to scrub skin, soils from makeup or dead skin cells can rapidly accumulate. Being wet and not just damp means there is a longer dry time. This lengthy condition of moisture creates the perfect environment for bacteria and mold to grow to unacceptable levels.” I mean, ew, guys.

What about hand towels? According to TODAY, you should be washing them every one to two days because they are being used more frequently than your body or face towels.

In addition to washing your towels way more frequently than you probably do now, here are other ways to keep your towels clean:

Add Vinegar To The Washing Machine

Heinz White Vinegar Distilled, Amazon.com, $10.75

An expert at laundry, Mary Marlowe Leverette told The Huffington Post that she recommends doing two washes for your towels. In order for that musty smell to be removed, you can wash your towels once with one cup of vinegar and then another wash with your regular soap. Vinegar is a really handy product that can be used for naturally disinfecting a lot of household items, so adding it to your wash doesn't hurt.

Bleach Your Towels

Chlorine Free Bleach 21Loads Free & Clear, Amazon.com, $10.40

You can also bleach your white towels to make sure they are fully disinfected and bacteria-free. Just add a one-fourth or a half cup of bleach into hot water and you're good to go.

Let Your Towel Fully Dry

When your towel is damp, it's more likely that bacteria will continue to thrive on it. Co-author of The Clothing Doctor's 99 Secrets of Cleaning and Clothing Care Steve Boorstein told Real Simple, "Always hang up a towel after using it. A rack is ideal for airing out the maximum amount of surface area. Don’t throw a damp towel ― whether it has been used in the kitchen or the bathroom ― on the floor or in a hamper to dry. The residual buildup of bacteria only worsens if a damp towel doesn’t dry completely between uses."

Images: Andrew Zaeh/Bustle; Courtesy of Brands; tsmall/Flickr; Pixabay (1)