To Do: Give Up Paper Towels

To Do: Give Up Paper Towels

Living in San Francisco, Rob and I try to be good little environmentalists. We recycle, we buy organic food, we walk to work and take public transportation. Don’t be too impressed, it comes really easily in this green city!

There’s one environmental thing we do that I’m really proud of: Rob and I don’t use any paper towels. I don’t think we’ve bought a roll for a couple years. Instead, we use cloth dishtowels that get washed in the laundry each week. It’s pretty easy and kind of fun!

What do you think? Could you live without paper towels?

Next Post:
Previous Post:
This article was written by
There are 8 comments for this article
  1. Danielle at 10:34 pm

    Oh, wow. This is an inspiration. We use them like it’s going out of style, but I can see us getting into this. I have to admit I do feel guilty about how freely I grab a paper towel.

  2. Erin S. at 11:21 pm

    Ditto what Danielle said–I have cotton ones too, but when the paper towels are there….it’s too easy to grab them, especially for a messy spill.

    I do use cloth napkins though, never paper, so that’s something, right?

    Just found your blog–I love it!

  3. Mode at 11:22 pm

    I could give up paper towells if I had some of those fantastic fabric versions in your picture. Where do you get those?

  4. mrsem Author at 12:27 am

    I think most of those towels are from CostPlus World Market. That or Ross 🙂

  5. Diana at 12:47 am

    I could and did…then I got married. My husband uses them like crazy!

  6. Anonymous at 1:14 am

    The only time I use a paper towel is to clean up broken glass. When wet it’s good at getting all those tiny pieces and then you can toss it.

    Now i’m working on giving up sponges and using dish clothes instead. I think I’ve got to keep one for cleaning the bathroom.


  7. Elizabeth at 3:11 am

    I could totally give up paper towels except for one use, which maybe someone can figure out: cleaning our cast iron pan.

    We cook almost everything in a giant cast iron skillet, and never ever wash it, just “cure it” like so: any fat/grease/nastiness gets wiped out with paper towels, then depending on how dirty it is either it gets a handful of salt rubbed in with a paper towel, or we simmer some cheap wine, dump the liquid, and then wipe it out with salt, and then it gets a light coat of oil, also with a paper towel. I’m down with dishtowels for everything else, but all of that grease would mean we would have to have at least one dishtowel a day dedicated to just the cast iron pan, and I also don’t know how I feel about washing grease soaked towels with other laundry – just can’t imagine it would be pretty.

    Wow that was long. Any suggestions?

  8. Julie at 4:03 am

    oh, how i miss the bay area. i could live without paper towels, but the other family members…..?