(Huffington Post) – Your dishes are sparkling after you dry them off — or is that just the E. coli?
We’re always on the hunt for ways we can keep our homes germ-free, and we landed on one particularly NASTY vessel of ick: towels.
If you’re drying silverware with a kitchen towel, for instance, chances are you’re drying it with germs. A 2014 study from the University of Arizona found that 89 percent of kitchen rags carried coliform bacteria, the stuff found in both animal and human digestive tracts that’s used to measure water contamination (though to be fair, not all of it is dangerous). Twenty-five percent tested positive for E. coli.
We took a deep dive into the particulars of towel cleaning: how often should you wash the various kinds of towels used on a daily basis? It turns out you should wash all your towels more often than you probably think. 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. Kitchen rags should ideally be dipped in diluted bleach between uses (who knew?), according to a University of Arizona germ expert. And face towels should really be replaced after every use if you don’t want to reintroduce bacteria to your pores, says a dermatologist.