How many times do you reuse a towel before tossing it in the washing machine? A few days? A week? Longer?! Every time you wipe your hands, face or body on a towel, you are essentially rubbing off dead skin cells, dirt and other bacteria. Now, if you reuse that towel again and again without washing it, well, that’s just nasty. Finally, here’s the answer we’ve all been looking for!
Experts say you should wash your bath towels after every three uses. “Towels used after bathing or showering that are just damp could be hung to dry and used up to three times,” Kelly A. Reynolds, Ph.D., an environmental health science professor at the University at Arizona, told BuzzFeed. “Bacteria and mold will begin to accumulate, but growth will be slowed as the towel dries.”
Do you ever notice when your towels have that musty smell? It’s basically all the millions and millions of skin cells mixed with bacteria. How lovely. As for face towels/washcloths, those need to be washed after every single use. “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,” Reynolds says about washcloths.
Now, go home and wash your towels!