Monday, January 18, 2010

TOTW: Kitchen sponges & tea -towels

Tip Of The Week:

Sponges, cloths and tea-towels in the kitchen can be a party venue for bacteria.
I don't like scare mongering, and think that a bit of dirt and bacteria is good for us, but apparently one study found that some sponges contain more bacteria than a toilet seat. And a dirty or damp cloth is the perfect environment for bacteria to grow. So here's how to keep your sponges and tea towels from making you or your family ill:

Always rinse a sponge well after use with hot water, then squeeze as much of the water out of the sponge before leaving it to dry. Leaving a sponge to soak in water is a bacteria cocktail... yuk. You can also pop your sponges in the dishwasher if you have one because dishwashers use much hotter water to help sterilise. And then of course, never keep a sponge too long, give it a a good sniff every now and then to make sure it's still useable, and if you want a greener way that throwing your sponges in the bin often, read this article... there are some great tips.

Tea-towels are just as bad, and perhaps even worse because many of us wipe our hands on them as we go along (guilty over here!) spreading the bacteria. I keep a pile of seven tea-towels in the cupboard which I replenish every week with a batch of seven freshly laundered ones, giving me one tea towel to use for every day of the week. That way as soon as a towel has had enough use I can grab a clean one. Some people might think that replacing a tea towel everyday is a bit OTT, but it depends how much you use them, and what for. You can also have separate tea -towels for separate tasks, but that just confuses me, and I'd rather use them one a day... they are only a small item to add to the laundry load after all. And of course make sure that the tea towel you use to dry your plates or cutlery isn't the tea towel you just used to wipe your hands on after working with meat - eek!
Have a great week!


Anonymous said...

really, really, good subject. I always have separate towels for hands or dishes, and always throw them in the washer at the end of the day.I usually use about 12 during the week. But when touching meat always wash your hands before touching any towel and clean the whole area before taking the vegetable stuff out of the refrigerator.

MelMel said...

Some top tips there, I always enjoy your new blog

LaundryBasketCase said...

Thanks Mel!
And thanks for the tips Anonymous... it is a good idea to wash your hands before wiping them on a tea towel.

Florence and Mary said...

These are really helpful tips for me as I'm about to move out of home... although on the plus side I do think I have hundreds of tea towels I've brought on my travels so 1 per day shouldn't be a problem for me!

Victoria xx

linen tea towels - karen phillips said...

great post with useful tips on how to make the most of your kitchen tea towels. I agree with you - it's important to change your kitchen dish towels regularly.

A note on perfection

Many of the posts featured on this blog are about doing household chores the correct, or so to say perfect way. My intention is not to make readers feel that the way they are running their households are wrong. So if making the bed, or ironing shirts in a certain way doesn't fit your lifestyle, do not feel guilty about it. But by learning the correct way of doing things it might just come in handy for those times when special guests are staying, or when you need to iron that shirt perfectly for a job interview. So enjoy the learning, but skip the guilt and LOVE your homes. x

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