Matters of Money

Don’t waste money cleaning with paper towels

Always the best is to clean with microfiber cloths that can be reused and laundered.

If you stop to think about it, you realize most things can be cleaned with a reusable sponge or cloth, so save paper with these expert tips and save money.

Sink, before reaching for the paper towel to remove that icky residue from your sink, shower, or bathtub. The best way to remove soap scum (residue) from your bathroom is to use a mixture of vinegar with Dawn dish soap to cut through the grime and then wipe dry with a clean cloth.

Wiping your hands while cooking Cooking, it’s easy to just grab a sheet off the roll to dry your greasy, sticky fingers, but try to resist. Martha Stewart Living recommends wearing an apron while cooking, and chances are you’ve got one hanging in the kitchen you’ve been neglecting. You’ll not only save paper as you cook, but you’ll also protect your clothing in the process. Just wipe your hands on the apron after washing them, and move on to the next step in your cooking process.

Carpets and rugs Laminate parquet floor. Light wooden texture. Beige soft carpet. Accidentally spill soda on the rug? Don’t reach for the paper towel. “Wiping up spills or scrubbing stains with a paper towel will leave paper residue on carpeting, and it does not do a thorough job of wiping up,” Instead, use a clean dry cloth to soak up spills, let it dry, then vacuum. Scrubbing the stain will make the lint to go deep into the fiber and it will be difficult to vacuum afterward. Use a sponge instead.


Dinner plates, wiping kitchen plates and cups with paper towels because they’ve been sitting unused in the cupboard for a while is a bad idea. “This would be anything but nature-friendly, not to mention that tiny particles might stick to dishes and later on end up in your digestive system.” Use a rag or damp cloth instead to wipe off those plates or mugs.


Electronic screens, keep paper towels far away from your TV screen, laptop, and even your cell phone. We would never recommend using paper towels on delicate glass surfaces like LCD or plasma TV screens, the fibers can cause permanent etching of the screen. Instead, use a product and microfiber cloth designed specifically for these surfaces, it’s also important to not apply too much pressure when cleaning these screens, because it may cause damage to the crystals inside an LCD.

Here are some more tips on cleaning other tricky household objects:

Mirrors and windows, when cleaning windows and mirrors, use microfiber clothes instead of paper towels. Microfiber cloths, work just as well (if not better) and they’re reusable. “If you don’t have cloth, newspaper or even a paper bag will also work. And the best part: None of them leave lint behind the way a paper towel can.


The Toilet. Paper towels are not effective in cleaning toilets, instead, use Lysol Toilet Bowl cleaner or Comet Toilet Bowl Cleaner with bleach and a toilet bowl brush to make your toilet bowl sparkle. Check out the germiest places in your bathroom.

Cutting boards ,when cleaning up stains such as meat juices on a wooden surface like a cutting board, do not use a paper towel as it will not thoroughly soak up all of the liquid. Use a clean, damp cloth with disinfectant on it to remove all residue.

Eyeglasses, raw paper can be hard enough to scratch your lenses, and it will leave lint, instead, always use microfiber cloths as it cuts the oils that cause smudges and wipes them away.

Car interiors, avoid using paper towels when cleaning the car, don’t dust your dashboard with a paper towel. Again, microfiber is ideal as it removes the dust versus moving it around. A dry paper towel never seems to fully remove the dust and applying a cleaning product leaves a sticky residue that attracts more dust! The grooves in microfiber capture and remove the mess.

Grout, use a toothbrush instead, anything that requires to you really get in there (to clean deeply) is not gonna get clean with a paper towel. The material is too flimsy and will shred as soon as you start scrubbing. Instead, use an old toothbrush to get stains out of grout, brick, or other textured surfaces, or you could clean your grout with vinegar.


Cloth works perfectly with a multi-purpose or just with vinegar or a non-toxic all purpose cleaner and glass cleaner. Microfiber is better than paper towels, which leave streaks and create waste. It is better to be a big fan of microfiber cloths. It’s ideal to use something sustainable like microfiber whenever possible.

How we said before, microfiber cloths can be reused and laundered.