Will you wash your sheets and towels on April 15 to protect your skin and get rid of gross bacteria?
Did you know National Laundry Day is April 15? Many would love to be able to say, “Alexa fold the laundry,” or “Alexa wash the towels.” The chore of getting laundry done can be time-consuming and just another to-do on a long list to be checked off. It is because of this that 50% percent of people admit they use their bath towel at least five times before throwing it in the washer?
According to GE’s poll, many believe that since they are typically clean when using their bath towel, there is a belief that the towel is not dirty or collecting bacteria. Guess what? Towels are moist and damp and provide an environment that is ideal for bacteria. So if you are using your towel five times before washing it, there is a good chance the towel could have E. Coli, mold, MRSA, yeast, and other things growing on it.
Sounds gross, right? Well, it is. We can’t see the tiny microbes growing, and because we use a towel when we get out of a shower or bath, it has to be clean, or does it? Did you know that if you flush the toilet with the lid open, germs could be reaching your towels and your toothbrush? In fact, Dr. Charles Gerba, a microbiologist, told Time: “After about two days, if you dry your face on a hand towel, you’re probably getting more E. Coli on your face then if you stuck your head in a toilet and flushed it.”
Here at SAM, we think we will be washing our towels a bit more often. The American Cleaning Institute recommends washing your towels every three to four uses. That seems better for the environment than cleaning daily and better for your health than washing every five days.
What about washing your sheets? The Good Housekeeping Institute says you should wash your sheets — and other bedding — at least once every two weeks. If you have night sweats, or just sweat a lot in general, bump washing up to once a week. Your sheets collect skin flakes, body oils, and fluid. Here at SAM, we recommend washing your sheets once a week, just as Martha Stewart does.
A new study (October 2018) suggest hospital linens washed in a professional setting may not be thoroughly cleansing away bacteria Clostridium difficile, aka C. diff. This means that this potentially life-treating infection could be passed through patient bed sheets.
There seems to be a market for textile technology to help combat icky bacteria that would be happy to attack our immune systems both in the home and hospital settings. Several companies on the market offer sheet sets that help ward off these bad germs, and other companies such as Under Armour offer anti-microbial moisture-wicking workout gear. Even Manduka yoga mats can be anti-microbial. There is an increasingly more significant demand for safe and effective anti-microbial and germ-killing household products; hopefully, bacteria-fighting towels are on retailers lists for the future.