Can You Wash Kitchen Towels With Bath Towels?

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Can You Wash Kitchen Towels With Bath Towels? Kitchen towels are used to wipe countertops and clean grease stains off the stove and other stuff. While bath towels are for your body after you finish showering, or swimming.

kitchen towels

Therefore, you should not be washing your bath towels with your kitchen towels for so many reasons that should be super obvious. The most glaring reason is that you will get grease stains all over your bath towels if you do.


Reasons why you should not wash kitchen towels with bath towels

Here are a few other reasons you should not be washing your kitchen towels with your bath towels in case you’re not properly convinced yet.

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Food smell

There are food smells that are very difficult to get rid off when they get on your clothes, like garlic and some other spice.

When you use your kitchen towels while cooking to wipe your hands and kitchen equipment, it imbibes that food smell and when you wash them with your bath towels.

They begin to smell like food, for something that you use on your skin after cleaning yourself that is a slippery slope, it can lead to body odour.

To avoid the very avoidable situation of your towels smelling like curry, you should not wash your kitchen towels with your bath towels. Always wash them separately and clean the washing machine after you do. If you own one.

Grease stain

Grease is basically oils, coagulated oil, in case you were wondering. This is a common stance in the kitchen and we tend to use the kitchen towels to wipe them off the stove and countertops after cooking. Grease stains tend to be permanent, once it gets on your clothes, it’s there to stay.

If you wash your grease-soaked kitchen towels with bath towels, the grease will get into your bath towels and no amount of laundry detergent can keep them from getting stained.

This will ruin the aesthetic of your towels, it will leave a huge stain on the fabric which may end up causing it to break apart over time.


We all know nobody is using white towels as kitchen towels, and if you are, I guess you’re braver than most of us. Often kitchen towels are coloured to make it easier to hide stains acquired from years of kitchen service.

If you end up washing these towels with your bath towels that happen to be white, since coloured clothes tend to lose their colour a lot, it may happen that your kitchen towels will bleed into your bath towels.

Permanently ruining them, you will have to get new towels or just settle for the now dyed towels. When doing laundry, always sort your clothes by colour, that way if anyone is bleeding it won’t affect the others.

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If there are bacteria on either of the towels, washing them together would mean that the bacteria would spread either way. Bacteria is the cause of mould and foul smells in towels and it is caused when you don’t dry your towels properly.

When your towels begin to smell and you want to wash it, ensure you wash the towel on its own to avoid spreading the bacteria to your other towels.

Different wash modes

Kitchen towels and bath towels are washed differently because they are made with different types of fabrics. They also usually come with their individual washing instructions attached to it on a small piece of clothing, when the washing instructions aren’t followed, it often leads to the towels shrinking or even worse— tearing.

Since the kitchen towels and the bath towels have their own washing modes, washing them together is sort of impractical. One wrong move and either or both of them are ruined beyond repair.

Size difference

It may be difficult to believe but the size difference matters when washing clothes, if a piece of clothing is small it may end up disappearing into the larger clothing and it won’t be cleaned properly in the washing machine.

This also applies to towels, because the kitchen towels are typically handheld sized and bath towels are very much larger, when you wash them together, the bath towel gets all the action from the machine paddle with the kitchen towel getting little to no friction required to wash it properly.

By sorting them out and washing them separately, you ensure they each get washed appropriately.

Read Also: Can You Wash All Colored Towels Together?

Antibacterial detergents

Antibacterial detergents are usually used to wash bath towels because they are thicker which makes them dry slowly after showering and it makes them more prone to hosting bacteria.

Due to this reason, when using the detergent, you should always wash the kitchen towels separately in order for the bath towels to get the full antibacterial treatment. By doing so, your bath towels become less likely to host bacteria. And won’t smell even when it’s damp.


When you wash your kitchen towels with your bath towels, there may be cross-contamination. The dead skin cells from your bath towels will end up in your kitchen towel which may or may not end up in your food.

And the grease and food particles will end up in your bath towels and make them stink in the long run. Either way, the results are bad. For all components to stay in their metaphorical lane, you need to wash them separately and individually.


If you need to apply bleach to your white bath towels, washing them with your kitchen towels may make them change into a different colour when the wash cycle is complete.

The kitchen towel will fade and bleed into your white towels and the white will become a paler and more disgusting version of whatever colour the kitchen towel is.

To avoid this very unfortunate scenario, it’s best to wash them separately, especially when applying bleach. Wash your white towels alone.

Fabric softeners

Fabric softeners are used to make bath towels fluffy after a while, using the fabric softener on your kitchen towel will make the fabric weak and more prone to tear.

You may be thinking “ why doesn’t it make the bath towels weak” and that’s simply because there are made to serve different purposes, with bath towels being more absorbent and soft.

Kitchen towels lean more on the absorbent side, and they are made to withstand higher degrees of heat. Since you may be using it to open pot lids and carrying pans out of the oven and what not.

How to get rid of bad smells in bath towels?

You may find that sometimes even after we wash our towels there may still be a foul smell present in them, here are some effective ways to get rid of the smell.

Hot wash

Since the main cause of odour on towels is usually bacteria, the best way to kill them off would be to use hot water when washing them. After washing dry completely using a dryer or under direct sunlight the smell should be gone.

Use fragrant laundry detergent

There are some detergents that have an intense and nice fragrance and when you wash your towels with them, it takes over the towel completely. In a good way of course. These detergents are super affordable and easily accessible. Check this Febreze odour elimination spray out.

Store properly after washing

The best way to get rid of the musty smell is by storing your towels in a well aerated. Store them in a cool area that gets a lot of airflows. When your towels are stored properly, they remain fresh for use whenever you need them.

Use vinegar

A known effective hack for bad smell in towels is to use vinegar to wash the towels, the vinegar not only helps get rid of the smell but also can be used as a substitute for fabric softeners. It keeps your towels smelling fresh and revives their fluffy nature.

Clean your washing machine often

Sometimes the main cause of foul odour in clothes comes from the very appliance made to wash the said clothes. Washing machines are supposed to be clean on a regular basis because after using it for a while, it becomes dirty from the residue of dirt which is cleaned from clothes and towels.

If your washing machine is dirty, it may cause your towel to smell bad even after washing it thoroughly.

Use clean water to wash

If you don’t use clean water to wash the towel, it will inevitably make the towels smell, no matter the amount of laundry detergent you use. Ensure to clean your reservoir constantly so the water doesn’t get contaminated.


What do you wash kitchen towels with?

You should wash kitchen towels with other kitchen towels, that way you reduce the risk of cross-contamination. You can’t go washing your kitchen towels with your underwear or your t-shirts and whatnot. Whenever you’re washing your kitchen towels, let them stick together and clean themselves.

Can you wash kitchen rags with bathroom rags?

No, no. Rags you use in the bathroom are definitely way different from the ones used in the kitchen. The kitchen rags are usually used in a more sanitary way because they come in close proximity to food.

While the bathroom rags are used in a less flattering way and end up picking up a lot of microbes from the bathroom floors.

Washing them with the kitchen rags will end up infecting the kitchen rags with the said bacteria which will make it unsanitary and unsafe to be close to food items in the kitchen. Wash them separately.

Should you wash dishtowels with clothes?

You should not be washing your dish towels with your clothes, dish towels are used to wipe plates after washing for storage. Which makes them very delicate, washing them with clothes that you wear out and lean on surfaces that may be germ-infested is very unsanitary and can lead to a lot of health problems.

When your dish towels get contaminated with germs from your clothes and you use the same towel to wipe your plates if you use the same plate to eat. You may end up with a stomach infection.

Is it ok to wash towels with sheets?

It’s okay to wash bath towels with sheets because they are both larger and come in close contact with the skin on a daily basis.

However, you should not wash your sheets with kitchen towels, the grease and food crumbs will get all in your sheets and smell. Nothing is worse than smelling sheets, it will ruin your bedroom vibe.

How do you sanitize dishcloths naturally?

The best way to sanitize dishcloth naturally would be to soak it in hot water for a while, maybe up to half a day. And then hand wash it thoroughly with antibacterial detergents, after that dry it under direct sunlight so it dries faster and the hot sun will help kill of whichever hardcore bacteria is left on the surface.

Why do clean towels smell sour?

There is probably mould formation on your towels and it hasn’t been treated properly. Mould is caused when bacteria grow on the surface of damp towels, after a while, the towel will begin to develop a musty smell that is almost like it’s sour.

If the towel is not washed properly, even after it’s dry and “clean” the smell will still be there. The best way to treat a mould-infested towel would be to not wash and apply vinegar while you’re washing it.

Can You Wash Kitchen Towels With Bath Towels – Conclusion

Washing your kitchen towels with your bath towels has more downsides than it has benefits. When performing any tasks, it’s important to do a pros and cons list, that will help you determine if the task is worth performing or not.

In this instance, the cons are way worse than the pros which makes it not ideal to do, therefore in order to be more efficient when doing laundry. Sort your kitchen towels and your bath towels separately, that way you avoid all the cons stated above.

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