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Monday, 18 January 2021

Have we been washing our towels all wrong – here’s how you should really be cleaning them

Well, you can't say there isn't variety on this blog. Whether it be articles and studies about diabetes and living the low carb lifestyle, to a wide variety of recipe suggestions, and even wildlife photography - there is variety - and they do say 'variety is the spice of life'.

But how about this one?

Have we been washing our towels all wrong? 


"Towel designer and expert Lucy Ackroyd of Christy has revealed some top tips in keeping your towels light, fluffy and practically hotel standard.

The first tip Lucy advises is to wash your towels separately. Sure, it's easy to just put a whole stack of laundry into the machine - but Lucy reveals that this can stop them from becoming lovely and fluffy.

"When washing your towels, never overload the machine. The towels need plenty of room within the drum to breathe and circulate, allowing them to be rinsed and fluffed up properly," she explains.

"If you try to stuff too many in, you'll end up with a clumped together heap, with moisture pockets throughout, leading to scratchy, stiff towels.

"Make sure to wash your towels separately to your other laundry to avoid any colour or fibres transferring onto your beautiful pristine towels."

Another hot tip from Lucy is to avoid silicone-based fabric softeners when putting you towels to wash. Why? Because repeated use of these sorts of softeners can lead to build up, and make your towels less absorbent in the long run - and no-one wants to be left dripping wet after a shower.

And while it may be tempting to boil your towels in a super-hot wash, this could be the very worst thing for them.

"Generally, wash your towels at 40 degrees as any higher can cause them to wear out too quickly," Lucy says.

"However, to remove oils and bacteria that can build up over time, put them through a 60 degree wash occasionally. This routine will allow them to be perfectly hygienic without taking away from their quality and texture."

Once they've been through the washing machine, shaking your towels can genuinely make all the difference to how soft they can be.

Lucy advises a brisk shake before they go into the drum, and a brisk shake after they've done a cycle.

"This will open up the fibres slightly, allowing the detergent to sink inside every pore and make them super clean," she says.

"At the end of the drying cycle, or before hanging them outside if you are line drying, shake the towels a second time. The act of shaking will loosen the fibres of the fabric, making your towels super plush and fluffy."

One golden rule for drying your towels is to always avoid putting it on the radiator. "This will lead to a rough finish, exactly what you are trying to avoid!" 

"Instead, alternate between tumble drying and line drying. The best way to get super fluffy towels is tumble drying immediately after a wash, however overuse can make the fabric wear down over time.

"To combat the effect of the tumble dryer, line dry your towels occasionally. Not only does line drying leave your towels with a fresh natural scent, but the sunlight can also have a bleaching effect which is perfect if you have white towels. "The UV rays can even help kill bacteria!"" ...

Well there you have it!
Who knew there was so much to it?

Out of interest how do you wash your towels, if you have any tips do please share them in the comments.

Above words from article here

Related Post That May Interest You
Wash Day Blues - read it here

After you've done your washing why not reward yourself with a cup of tea (or coffee)
and a Lemon 'Sponge' Cake Bar, they are low carb and sugar free - more details here


A variety of articles and recipes are within this blog. Please note, not all may be suitable for you. If you may have any food allergies, or underlying health issues these must always be taken into account. If you are a diabetic and not sure how certain foods may affect your blood sugars, test is best, i.e. use your meter.

All the best Jan

44 comments:

magiceye said...

Interesting tips.

Martha said...

Glad to know I've been doing it right all along. I can remember my mother using such heavy fabric softener that our towels were soft but not at all absorbent. I've always just thrown in a dryer sheet instead. :)

Kay said...

I'm afraid we usually overstuff our washing machine which I keep warning my husband is not good, but he keeps wanting to conserve water. And we hang our laundry outside on the clothesline which I'm sure deteriorates the towels faster in the strong sunlight. When the kids come to visit they complain about the super scratchy towels.

Tom said...

...who knew?

The Joy of Home with Martha Ellen said...

These are very good tips. Fabric softener will definitely keep your towels from absorbing. Love to occasionally hang the towels on the line. My linens are all white and they love a day on the line soaking up the sunshine. They do smell divine as well.

Lori Miller said...

I dry them on the line when the weather allows. When I lived in dry, sunny Denver, I had some crispy towels!

L said...

πŸ‘πŸ‘πŸ‘❤️

peppylady (Dora) said...

For me, I like to hang my towels out to dry.
Stay safe and coffee is on

DVArtist said...

Great post. I follow most of these rules already. I never wash towels with other items. I wash them in small loads, but I didn't know about shaking them out. I will start that. As for line drying, where I live the wind is too strong so I will have to stay with the dryer. Ohh I will take the lemon bars too. LOL

Practical Parsimony said...

I watched and learned from my mother as she gave each towel a snap before she pinned them on the clothesline. I do the same as she, shake/snap each item to fluff it before being pinned to the clothesline. People don't believe this helps when line drying the laundry. Another tip for having softer towels--only dry them until they are dry, not all day on a scorching summer day. I live in the American South.

Elephant's Child said...

Some of it I do correctly - and on some counts I fail.
I do wash towels with other things - but never wash anything at 60 degrees.

Christine said...

Good tips.

Vicky Cahyagi said...

Great tutorial. I followed your blog now. Thx

Jo said...

I wash them exactly in that way, and line dry as I don't have a tumble drier.

mamasmercantile said...

Good to know I am doing it right.

Margaret D said...

That's how I wash my towels and dry them on the line with a breeze blowing hopefully and the sun...always use white towels for my husband an myself.
So many people down this end of the world use the drier for all their clothes - I don't prefer the fresh air and sun.

Francisco Manuel Carrajola Oliveira said...

Um artigo muito interessante.
Um abraço e boa semana.

Andarilhar
Dedais de Francisco e Idalisa
O prazer dos livros

Sue said...

I don't see the bit about your son leaving the soaking towels to dry on his clean bed...I do prefer to line dry, but it takes a while in the snow so it's back to the tumble dryer for a while. Take care and have a great week, Sue xx

Ella said...

Glad to know I got it right ... almost always!
Only in the summer I dry the towels outside, otherwise they go in the dryer!
Have a great week!

Valerie-Jael said...

Interesting article! Valerie

linda said...

I do all of the above except the drying bit, they are hung out to dry weather permitting if not they go over the cloths horse. I rarely use the tumble dryer it takes far too much electricity.

My name is Erika. said...

Who knew? The only thing I saw that I do do is wash my towels separately, but I usually wash them in hot water to really clean them. Every wash. Guess I have a bit of adjusting to do. Happy new week!

eileeninmd said...

Great advice! I have already told hubby about overloading the washer.
Take care, enjoy your day! Wishing you a happy new week!

Jeanie said...

Who knew?! Very interesting! (And the lemon bar recipe looks good. I must have missed that earlier!)

Martha said...

Very interesting tips!

CJ Kennedy said...

Who knew?

Ygraine said...

Oops, seems I've been laundering my towels incorrectly all my life!πŸ™„
I usually wash them along with a mixture of other items in a 60° wash, use silicone based fabric conditioner, and sometimes do sometimes overload my machine!
Gosh, so many mistakes! It's no wonder my towels are scratchy and rough!!😝
Many thanks for this really interesting and informative post...I will try to treat my long-suffering towels with a little more respect in future!!πŸ˜‰πŸ˜‚

Have a great afternoon πŸ‘

Hugs xxx

Inger said...

My washer is in my shed with only cold water available. I have no idea how the guy who built this house, he was a general contractor, could omit a laundry room. He also forgot a broom closet. And he did have a wife, I wonder if she had nothing to say about things.

And I hang my laundry on my lines. So my towels are pretty rough, but you get used to it.

Divers and Sundry said...

I do some of these. I'll start shaking them today.

PerthDailyPhoto said...

I do line dry my towels Jan, it's been so super windy and hot here this last week that they dry both fast and soft πŸ˜‰ Going to check back now and see what scrumptious recipes I've missed πŸ’™

Pat @ Mille Fiori Favoriti said...

Interesting information! Our washers are low water usage so I can't overload them but I always thought hot water was best for towels and now will try a cooler temperature

Lorrie said...

I wash my towels with other laundry, but I never use fabric softened. A glug of white vinegar in the rinse cycle does the trick. I only line dry in the summer. Freshly laundered and fluffy towels are a wonderful little daily treat.

David M. Gascoigne, said...

Who knew that washing towels could be so complicated with so much to know? I think I will continue with what I am doing!

Bleubeard and Elizabeth said...

Absolutely NOTHING smells better than clothes hung on the line. I always shake mine hard before I hang them. I wish I could line dry all year long.

happyone said...

I wash my towels with the other laundry but from now on I'm going to wash them separately. Never use fabric softener and don't have a clothes dryer so my towels always get hung outside weather permitting.

Debbie said...

Some great tips!!! Some I do, some I don’t, I will definitely be making some changes!!!

NatureFootstep said...

ouch! That was a lot. But I do it my way. I don´t have a laundy machine. Why?? I am a bit allergic to washing powder and such so I handwatch everything. And I am very sure to rinse every particles out of the loundry. Keeps me from itching! :)

Lee said...

Damn! And I've just done a couple of loads of laundry!!!! Oh! Well...next time! :)

Magic Love Crow said...

Excellent post! Thank you! Thanks for the lemon bars! Big Hugs!

Rose said...

I loved reading this. I always wash towels separately. But I almost always wash on hot. And always dry in the dryer these days. But i may start drying them outside. I actually like the towels to feel a bit rough. I for sure like them to feel like cotton. I seldom use fabric softener. With wool dryer balls, I don't even feel the need of even a tiny bit even in winter.

Conniecrafter said...

I do almost all of this except I dry my towels in the dryer, never hang clothes on a line.
The only thing I do is I add vinegar to the rinse, I put it in the compartment where the fabric softener usually goes and it will whiten, brighten, reduce odor, and soften the towels.

carol l mckenna said...

Great post info about washing towels ~ ^_^

Moment by moment,

A ShutterBug Explores,
aka (A Creative Harbor)

Snowbird said...

Well there you go, I've been washing my towels all wrong! xxx

Angie said...

Jan - great tips! Generally, I follow these directions with the exception of over-stuffing! I will try doing them on their own and see how that comes out!