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I grew up having paper towels handy for many uses, especially in the kitchen. Wash your hands; dry with a paper towel. Spill on the floor; wipe with a paper towel. Rinse fruits and vegetables; spread to dry on a paper towel. You get the idea.  


Once we started composting, we would add the used paper towels to the compost. At some point, just like with cloth napkins, we realized a more sustainable practice would be to use reusable towels. 


Many people already use towels in the kitchen to dry dishes. A separate towel can be used to dry hands. Other “utility” towels can be used for drying after washing lettuce or other vegetables and fruits. 

We have recently stopped using paper towels to clean up spills and use rags instead. We cook most nights, and with everyone home for more meals these days, we inevitably spill or drop something on the floor. An old washcloth or towel makes cleaning up just as easy. We keep a stack of rags under the kitchen sink so they are always handy. Once they have been used a few times, we put them in the wash with the other rags that have been used around the house. 


Not only can you save money and reduce paper consumption by eliminating paper towels, reusable towels and rags often do the job better than a paper towel. Give it a try and see!



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