Are You Washing Your Towels Enough?


Courtesy of Pixabay.

Janine Jones, Copy Editor

The efforts people will go to for perfect skin knows no bounds, whether it’s purchasing expensive lotions and serums or having specific beauty regimens. Despite all that hard work, could there be something sabotaging your journey to perfect skin? As a matter of fact, there could be.

Towels are a bathroom necessity, everybody knows it. No matter what you’re doing, if it involves your body and some water, a towel will more than likely be in the midst. But towels are the perfect places for bacteria and germs to cohabitate. More specifically, bacteria that can cause breakouts and other health issues. There are a lot of disgusting things that can be found in face, bath, and body towels. For example, bacteria is all around – and on – us, it flourishes in moist places (i.e. used bathroom towels). Also, the looped fibers found in the towels are perfect places for bacteria to hide and set up camp, so have fun with that fact.

According to New York dermatologist, Dr. Whitney Bowe, using an unclean and possibly infected towel can cause problems like bacterial infections, fungal infections, and minor breakouts, but in more serious cases MRSA and staph infections can spread through unsanitary towels. Even the most unlikely viruses like a cold, the flu, and pink eye, can hide in towels. Those who are prone to breakouts an unclean bath towel can be a catalyst for acne.

“If makeup is on the towel, then rubbing it into the skin can exacerbate acne,” said Bowe. “And if the prospect of bacteria isn’t enough, simply rubbing your face or body with a towel can also cause acne because of friction against the skin.”

After all that, one might ask, “How often should I be washing my towels?” The answer is quite simple, you might want to wash your towel after it has been used three times. It’s important that you think in uses and not days when it comes to your clean towel needs because some people shower more than once a day, where some do not bathe everyday. But if you don’t have an abundance of time to do laundry a few times a week, you can stick to washing your towels every three to six days.

When you wash said towels, make sure you are using hot water and use bleach, or a bleach substitute, and dry for 45 minutes. If you are using detergent, go for one that says “free and clear”, meaning sans fragrances and perfumes, which will help with eliminating acne-causing skin irritants.