How (and Why) I Kicked the Paper Towel Habit

Pioneering the Simple Life has become my conscience these days! They tell me what I already know (and sometimes what I don’t), but don’t get around to acting upon and then I am forced to confront my insertia and do something about it. Here is a prime example. We as a family are some of the world’s most profligate users of paper kitchen towels and I admit I am mostly to blame. Dishcloths fill me with horror because of all the bacteria and take so much washing and rinsing out; when there’s a spill it’s so much easier to grab kitchen paper and just throw it in the bin. I justified my use by buying recycled amd then composting them after use. I am now rethinking this tactic after reading this post. You should too. And be sure to read about shop receipts too. BPA is toxic and is everywhere – even in our recycled paper products!

Pioneering The Simple Life

A few good rags,

A few good rags in a basket = alternative to paper towels. Photo © Liesl Clark

A few good rags in a basket = alternative to paper towels. Photo © Liesl Clark

a washing machine,

2-3 weeks-worth of cloth rags in line for laundering = sustainable replacement for paper towels. Photo © Liesl Clark

2-3 weeks-worth of cloth rags in line for laundering = sustainable replacement for paper towels. Photo © Liesl Clark

and an empty drawer

"Wiping Towel Drawer," under the counter right next to the dinner table, ready for wipe-ups. Photo © Liesl Clark

“Wiping Towel Drawer,” under the counter, right next to the dinner table, ready for wipe-ups. Photo © Liesl Clark

are all it took to convert my family from paper towels to cloth towels.

Rosie would be proud of these cloth towels. They’re definitely “the quicker picker upper” vs. Bounty, her paper equivalent.

And there’s another reason to skip paper towels altogether: Bisphenol A, a chemical linked with cancer among other things. Sadly, according to a study published in Environmental Science & Technology, our recycled paper products are now laced with this endocrine disruptor because thermal receipts that have high amounts of BPA…

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