Paper Towel Alternatives

In our home we tend to go through paper towels very quickly.  We use them for everything from wiping down the counters, to cleaning up messy faces, to drying our hands.  My husband, in particular, uses the vast majority of our paper towels.  I love him to pieces, but when he gets home there seems to be paper towels wadded up all over my counters within minutes.  I don’t even know how it is possible and it drives me CRAZY!  When you are trying to live on a budget, you have to think of everything and my mind thought of paper towels.  Bounty Basic has been the brand I used for years and roughly costs $7 for 6 rolls.  Well, at the rate some people in our house use them, they don’t last long.  So, recently I bought different colored towels and we now have a color coded system.



Yellow- for cleaning up dry messes on the counters and table- crumbs, spilled flour, etc

Red- for drying clean hands

White- (not pictured)- tea towels for cleaning up messes where I use a cleaning spray

Dark Gray one- well, that one is just cute and I had to have it 🙂


My husband has been made aware he is to use the red one when drying his hands and has adjusted quite well to the change.  Haha!  I chose white for the ones where I will use a cleaning spray (usually vinegar) because those can be whitened.  (Be looking for a bleach alternative in a future post)  As far as cleaning up messes from something that could spread salmonella or e coli, I am still using paper towels and a cleaning agent.  I just don’t want to risk it.


After doing this for a week now, we are using way less paper towels.  That also means less trash.  Obviously, the initial investment for purchasing the cloth towels set us back a little bit, but eventually we will be saving money each month.  The color coding of the towels isn’t because I am some super organized person, it is simply to be able to keep track of what is being used for what.  Then you aren’t drying your hands with the towel that has dried vinegar from cleaning.  Below are the towels I purchased.  They are by no means the only options.  I just thought these were reasonably priced and would be durable.


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