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How often do you need to change your bath towel: dermatologist's advice

Yulia PoteriankoNews
The doctor told what signs to look for when replacing a towel with a clean one. Source: Created with the help of AI

What do you do with your towel after you dry yourself off after a bath or shower? Usually, you hang it up on a hook or bar to dry it until the next time you use it. But have you ever thought about when it's time to send it to the laundry?

Dermatologists warn against using a bath towel for too long. When you wipe yourself with it, bacteria get on the textile and begin to multiply under the influence of moisture and heat. And this is not good for personal hygiene or health in general. Real Simple asked dermatologist Anna Chu when exactly to change bath towels.

The general rule of thumb is to send a towel to the laundry after 3-4 uses. This frequency helps prevent the accumulation of bacteria in the fabric and the appearance of an unpleasant odor under their influence. It will also allow you to clean the object in time from skin particles and grease that get on it when you wipe it.

However, several factors can affect the length of time a towel can be used. Some of these signs shorten its service life, while others extend it.

Smell – if the towel looks unclean or starts to smell, it's a clear signal that it's time to wash it.

Frequency of showering – if you shower every day, less dirt accumulates on the fabric and the next wash can be postponed a little.

How much you sweat – if it's hot outside or you sweat a lot because of sports or work, you'll need to wash the towel more often, even if you shower daily.

Towel material – waffle towels dry faster, so bacteria develop on them more slowly than on terry towels, they can be washed even after 7-10 uses and will be safe.

Contamination of your environment – those who keep pets, smoke at home, are in the process of renovating, or are exposed to other pollutants in their environment need to wash towels as often as possible.

It is also important to replace towels with new ones in time to ensure that they do not lose their effectiveness and remain hygienic. Experts recommend focusing on the softness of the towel and its ability to absorb moisture. When normal washing and even the use of special products fail to fix this, it's time to buy a new one.

With proper care, the service life of an ordinary towel is about two years. With moderate use, this period may increase, and with intensive use, it may increase.

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