Science Focus - the home of BBC Science Focus Magazine

How often should you wash your bath towels?

Subscribe to BBC Science Focus Magazine and get 6 issues for just £9.99

How mucky do you think you really are...?

Asked by: Lisa Perry, St Ives

Advertisement

Damp towels do breed bacteria, but it’s important to understand that we are constantly surrounded by bacteria on virtually everything we touch. The bacteria on your towel nearly all originally came from your skin, and if you aren’t sick and don’t have any open cuts or wounds, there’s no reason to suppose that transferring some of these germs to a towel and then back to you will make them any more dangerous.

The American Cleaning Institute recommends washing towels every three or four uses. But surveys show that most people reuse them at least five times, apparently without any serious consequences.

How much salt would I need to float in my bath? © Getty Images

Advertisement

Subscribe to BBC Focus magazine for fascinating new Q&As every month and follow @sciencefocusQA on Twitter for your daily dose of fun facts.

Authors

luis villazon
Luis VillazonQ&A expert

Luis trained as a zoologist, but now works as a science and technology educator. In his spare time he builds 3D-printed robots, in the hope that he will be spared when the revolution inevitably comes.

Advertisement
Advertisement
Advertisement

Sponsored content