Etiquette Hell

A Civil World. Off-topic discussions on a variety of topics. Guests, register for forum membership to see all the boards. => Trans-Atlantic Knowledge Exchange => Topic started by: Brisvegasgal on January 10, 2014, 08:23:44 PM

Title: Cold weather and washing
Post by: Brisvegasgal on January 10, 2014, 08:23:44 PM
Earlier today (it's just after noon on Saturday in my part of the world) I read part of a post that mentioned using more than one towel for a stay of a couple of days.

I was wondering if that was the norm for those parts of the world where drying is difficult?

My family (mine & DHs) wash towels about once per fortnight and I wondered if that's because our towels dry pretty quickly when they're hung up after use. Conversely, we wash our sheets about once a week because they get a bit sweaty.
Title: Re: Cold weather and washing
Post by: JoW on January 10, 2014, 09:18:09 PM
I wash my towel once a week, when I wash my sheets.  I know people who use 2 fresh towels every day, one for their body, another for their head.  I'm in the US, and, as usual, there are a lot if differences between different people.  Just about everyone in my area has central heat and central air conditioning.  A towel on a rack dries quickly year round no matter what the weather is doing. 
Title: Re: Cold weather and washing
Post by: Yvaine on January 10, 2014, 09:28:17 PM
I used to live in a crummy apartment with a crummy bathroom that never seemed to get dry--I think it was a ventilation issue--and towels never got fully dry and they'd get funky pretty quick. Currently, I use a head towel and a body towel, but I use the same ones for about a week unless I happen to be doing extra laundry at some point in between, then I might throw them in just for good measure.
Title: Re: Cold weather and washing
Post by: kherbert05 on January 10, 2014, 09:47:35 PM
I use a fresh towel every day. Though Houston is humid, in my case it is about my skin condition, not the towel still being damp.
Title: Re: Cold weather and washing
Post by: Library Dragon on January 10, 2014, 09:49:41 PM
I use 2 per week, alternating each day. This way one is always dry.  Well....unless DH uses mine instead of his.
Title: Re: Cold weather and washing
Post by: GreenEyedHawk on January 10, 2014, 10:28:24 PM
 I wash the towels once a week, along with bedding as well.  My house is quite well-insulated so it's warm enough inside that towels dry fairly quickly when hung to dry. Also, my towel rack is right over a heat register, which helps a great deal.  Also, my towel is always nice and warm when I get out of the shower :)
Title: Re: Cold weather and washing
Post by: demarco on January 10, 2014, 10:53:59 PM
I use two to three towels for my hair (I have a lot of hair) and one for the rest of me. I wash towels about every week.  The towels dry out fine between uses. It's odd but I find that they dry faster hanging over the glass shower doors than they do hanging on the towel racks (except for the towel rack over the heater). 
Title: Re: Cold weather and washing
Post by: Promise on January 10, 2014, 11:06:40 PM
We wash towels once a week. I use a hair towel and just put on my thick and thirsty bathrobe when I step out of the shower. I don't towel off. Towels dry quickly here year round.
Title: Re: Cold weather and washing
Post by: Bluenomi on January 11, 2014, 02:02:17 AM
I find in winter my towel doesn't always dry properly and it's not even that cold here. That said my Queensland relatives are convinced Canberra is like the Artic  ;D
Title: Re: Cold weather and washing
Post by: Venus193 on January 11, 2014, 07:43:34 AM
I only ever knew one couple who used fresh towels every time they bathed or washed hair.  This seems wasteful to me because washing them that often makes them wear out faster.

Mine dry quickly and I can use a towel for a week.  However, I wish I had heated towel racks like the last place I stayed when I vacationed in London.  That would be fabulous in the winter.
Title: Re: Cold weather and washing
Post by: Thipu1 on January 11, 2014, 08:00:33 AM
We have a washer and dryer in our apartment so our experience may be a bit different. 

We change our bed once a week and the old sheets go right into the wash.  We have about five sets of sheets.

Towels are a different matter.  We have a lot of those as well and usually grab a clean one when the spirit moves.
Title: Re: Cold weather and washing
Post by: mechtilde on January 11, 2014, 08:16:29 AM
I usually use a clean towel every time I have a bath, and change the hand towel every couple of days.

Sheets are changed about once a week.

As for drying- summer is OK if dry, but if not we have to use an airer inside. In winter the central heating is on and things usually dry pretty fast on the towel dryers (which are like radiators) in the kitchen and shower room. I avoid using the tumble fryer if possible and mostly use it in spring and autumn when it is too cold and damp to dry things, but not cold enough for having the heating on.
Title: Re: Cold weather and washing
Post by: Layla Miller on January 11, 2014, 09:04:43 AM
I change/wash bath towels twice a week and hand towels once a week.  So far that's worked fine for us.
Title: Re: Cold weather and washing
Post by: camlan on January 11, 2014, 09:41:35 AM
US here. I use two towels a week--one for hair and face and one for the rest of me, plus a couple of hand towels. Towels get washed once a week, along with the sheets.

During the fall, winter and spring, bath towels dry on the towel rods pretty quickly. In the summer, it gets very humid here, and air conditioning is not common, so it can take two days for a towel to dry if left on the towel rod in the bathroom. And my apartment has no place to dry things outside. I've found that draping the towels over the shower curtain rod, so they don't have to be folded, is the only way to even hope to have them dry by the next time I want to shower.

While I know people who use fresh towels daily, I certainly don't have enough room to store that many clean towels just for me. I can't imagine the space needed for a family where everyone uses clean towels every day.
Title: Re: Cold weather and washing
Post by: BigBadBetty on January 11, 2014, 11:59:08 AM
I think it is common enough that people use a fresh towel each time in the U.S. I used to do that. It was just to have a fresh towel rather than my old towel wasn't dry. Most houses have both a washer and a dryer. Having a dryer makes the laundry process a lot faster. The washers are also have larger capacity. I live in a small condo. I have a European washer (Bosch Axxis). It is less than half the capacity of my parents' washer. I will now use my towels a couple times before washing.
Title: Re: Cold weather and washing
Post by: #borecore on January 11, 2014, 01:48:08 PM
We wash towels when we wash everything else, generally every two weeks or so. It's difficult and expensive to do the laundry here; small, old, crappy machines in a building that often doesn't do a good job of de-icing its sidewalk. I can't afford to take the time and money to do a separate load every few days to a week, as I would if we had an in-home unit.

If we take even longer to do laundry, I will pull out fresh towels at some point. I tend to replace the hand towel weekly.
Title: Re: Cold weather and washing
Post by: that_one_girl on January 11, 2014, 03:35:58 PM
I wash towels frequently because my work uniforms get dirty quickly, so i am constantly searching for things to add to a load so i'm not running a half-empty washer all the time.
Title: Re: Cold weather and washing
Post by: magicdomino on January 11, 2014, 06:39:31 PM
Two towels changed weekly.  Three sets (six towels) are perfect for a load in my washing machine.  Washcloths, however, are changed every day, as they usually don't dry very quickly.  Also, I have a habit of using the used washcloth to wipe down things in the bathroom.
Title: Re: Cold weather and washing
Post by: Julian on January 11, 2014, 06:52:29 PM
weekly here in the Aussie deep south.

I do have a heated towel rail though - it cost me all of $20 on special, took 5 minutes to install and it dries towels brilliantly.

I have an old, busted up rotary clothesline which is getting pulled down soon, and I'm in the process of installing a folding external clothesline. 

Summer days here where it doesn't rain are great for drying things, but some days in winter the fog never even lifts (I'm up fairly high) so in winter the clothes dryer or the folding laundry rack get a good workout.
Title: Re: Cold weather and washing
Post by: Library Dragon on January 11, 2014, 10:39:53 PM
DSs used to use a clean towel each time they showered. The problem was they showered at least 3 times a day.  My life was washing towels  ::) .  We saved so much on water and electricity when the moved out.
Title: Re: Cold weather and washing
Post by: mechtilde on January 12, 2014, 05:06:50 AM
Now I'm curious about washer sizes! I have a large washer by UK standards, which will take a 9kg (19lb) load. Most washers here take 6 or 7kg/13 or 15lb load. How much would a US washer take?
Title: Re: Cold weather and washing
Post by: menley on January 12, 2014, 07:11:43 AM
I'm not sure how to calculate weight as USA washers are sold by cubic foot - my washer previously held 5.0 cu ft before I left the USA. Now I live in Europe and my washer is approximately 1/3 the size of that, and it's considered large in this country. My best friend has a washer that can literally hold three shirts.
Title: Re: Cold weather and washing
Post by: Harriet Jones on January 12, 2014, 07:27:13 AM
We tend to use towels only once because we don't have anywhere to hang damp towels where they will be dry by the next day.
Title: Re: Cold weather and washing
Post by: veryfluffy on January 12, 2014, 08:20:03 AM
I have a heated towel rail in my bathroom. It runs off the central heating, but on a special valve which I think is linked to the hot water, so that it is always on, even when the heating is off. I use huge fluffy towels, hand them over the heated towel rail, and they are dry probably within a couple of hours. We each have bath towels and a smaller one for our hair, and they get washed along with the bathmat once a week.
Title: Re: Cold weather and washing
Post by: veronaz on January 12, 2014, 08:27:31 AM
When I wash my hair and wrap it in a towel, I put that towel on a drying rack so it will dry faster. 
Title: Re: Cold weather and washing
Post by: BigBadBetty on January 12, 2014, 09:51:58 AM
Now I'm curious about washer sizes! I have a large washer by UK standards, which will take a 9kg (19lb) load. Most washers here take 6 or 7kg/13 or 15lb load. How much would a US washer take?

As someone else mentioned, most washers don't list capacity by weight. I looked mine up since it's from Europe and it's listed at 17.6 lbs. I would say most U.S. washers would be at least double that. People who live in apartments and RVs (caravans) generally have a small one like me (if they have one, many don't.) Some RVs have a combination washer/dryer in one appliance, but I have never seen them elsewhere.
Title: Re: Cold weather and washing
Post by: Thipu1 on January 12, 2014, 10:58:59 AM
We live in a fairly large apartment but space is still limited.  As a result, our washer and drier are stacked but they aren't small. 

When SIL visited she did a load of wash and remarked that the capacity of our set was the same as the set she has at home.  She lives in a large, two story house. 
Title: Re: Cold weather and washing
Post by: shhh its me on January 12, 2014, 02:05:43 PM
  I use a fresh towel most days because I leave the towel on the pillow so the towel is still pretty damp the next night.  If I remember I'll use the day before yesterdays towel but I only use face towels once and I go through a lot of dish towels so that what dictates when I'm washing towels. 
Title: Re: Cold weather and washing
Post by: cicero on January 12, 2014, 11:35:23 PM
I live in israel where people shower daily ( and in the summer months probably two- three times a day).  ( I only mention this because I remember reading some years ago that that is not the norm worldwide).

DS and I share an apartment and bathroom/shower. We switch out the hand towel about weekly. Bath towel and bedding about weekly - probably more in summer. We hang the towels in our rooms to dry after shower.

My ex husband's family used towels once and then they went to the wash. They thought I was weird for reusing a towel.
Title: Re: Cold weather and washing
Post by: MariaE on January 13, 2014, 03:03:05 AM
I'd never heard of people not reusing towels until I joined FlyLady and she suggested reusing towels as part of limiting Mount Washmore.

We've always reused towels in my family - as have the other Danish and New Zealand families I know well enough to know such a thing about. I never saw any reason not to.
Title: Re: Cold weather and washing
Post by: cicero on January 13, 2014, 03:43:49 AM
I'd never heard of people not reusing towels until I joined FlyLady and she suggested reusing towels as part of limiting Mount Washmore.

We've always reused towels in my family - as have the other Danish and New Zealand families I know well enough to know such a thing about. I never saw any reason not to.
well, all i can say is that in my ex husband's family, they thought that my way was weird because the towels were "used" and you don't re-use your dirty clothing so how can you reuse your "used" towel. I thought "they" were weird because i only use my towel on my clean body so it's not dirty anymore. Of course, they used to just jumble them up in a corner of the bathroom so they would get all smelly and mildewy so that migh have been an issue too - in the house i grew up in we would hang them on a rack and air out the shower after using it.
Title: Re: Cold weather and washing
Post by: MariaE on January 13, 2014, 04:38:08 AM
I'd never heard of people not reusing towels until I joined FlyLady and she suggested reusing towels as part of limiting Mount Washmore.

We've always reused towels in my family - as have the other Danish and New Zealand families I know well enough to know such a thing about. I never saw any reason not to.
well, all i can say is that in my ex husband's family, they thought that my way was weird because the towels were "used" and you don't re-use your dirty clothing so how can you reuse your "used" towel. I thought "they" were weird because i only use my towel on my clean body so it's not dirty anymore. Of course, they used to just jumble them up in a corner of the bathroom so they would get all smelly and mildewy so that migh have been an issue too - in the house i grew up in we would hang them on a rack and air out the shower after using it.

I'm with you - towels are for clean bodies, so they are still clean (clean'ish anyway) afterwards. But then we were always taught to hang our towels on a rack after use as well.
Title: Re: Cold weather and washing
Post by: kherbert05 on January 27, 2014, 09:36:10 PM
I'd never heard of people not reusing towels until I joined FlyLady and she suggested reusing towels as part of limiting Mount Washmore.

We've always reused towels in my family - as have the other Danish and New Zealand families I know well enough to know such a thing about. I never saw any reason not to.
well, all i can say is that in my ex husband's family, they thought that my way was weird because the towels were "used" and you don't re-use your dirty clothing so how can you reuse your "used" towel. I thought "they" were weird because i only use my towel on my clean body so it's not dirty anymore. Of course, they used to just jumble them up in a corner of the bathroom so they would get all smelly and mildewy so that migh have been an issue too - in the house i grew up in we would hang them on a rack and air out the shower after using it.

I'm with you - towels are for clean bodies, so they are still clean (clean'ish anyway) afterwards. But then we were always taught to hang our towels on a rack after use as well.
I use medicated soap sometimes, and basically am dealing with wound care because of my skin, so I need fresh towels and wash cloths each day.

Pool towels/beach towels were treated differently we reused them - until one of the parents (a doctor) figured out why the kids on swim team had pink eye so often. The kids were sharing each other's towels. Then those started to be washed in hot water daily. But we had a huge collection of towels.
Title: Re: Cold weather and washing
Post by: Sophia on February 07, 2014, 01:43:04 PM
I have a large capacity washer by U.S. standards.  I can wash a king-sized comforter in it, and it still has room to tumble.  I've also washed curtains in it. 
Title: Re: Cold weather and washing
Post by: lady_disdain on February 07, 2014, 02:20:38 PM
I use medicated soap sometimes, and basically am dealing with wound care because of my skin, so I need fresh towels and wash cloths each day.

That is an excellent reason, kherbert. I do think it is wasteful to wash towels after a single use on a clean body but of course there are situations where that is necessary and sensible, like yours.

Title: Re: Cold weather and washing
Post by: baritone108 on February 07, 2014, 03:36:09 PM
Now I'm curious about washer sizes! I have a large washer by UK standards, which will take a 9kg (19lb) load. Most washers here take 6 or 7kg/13 or 15lb load. How much would a US washer take?

Copied from another website: Capacity
Have you ever weighed your laundry? A regular capacity washer (4.0 cubic feet) typically holds 12 to 16 pounds of laundry per load. Large capacity home washers (4.5 cubic feet) hold up to 20 pounds.
Title: Re: Cold weather and washing
Post by: Lynn2000 on February 07, 2014, 04:30:07 PM
US Midwest. It's generally a humid region, especially in the summer, but for whatever reason my apartment tends to have low humidity. I use my towel for a week and then get a fresh one. I always hang it up on the towel rack after use and I've never noticed it still being damp when I want to use it again, except maybe a small part where I left it crumpled instead of unfolded. Damp towels skeeve me out! I remember staying with my friend in San Francisco for several days and "my" towel was always damp, with cat hair on it.

As I was reading this thread, I realized that when I stay with my parents, I use a new towel every day! I never really thought about it before, even after my dad remarked that they always have more laundry when I'm there. I guess you can't be too subtle with me. ::) Though, in my defense, since there are three people sharing that bathroom, the used towels are always getting moved around, and I don't have a particular one "assigned" to me. They have a three-rod towel rack but also a basket, and my mom has a complicated system of how long the towels stay in each location, because they do have problems with mildew at their house. And then my dad is in charge of doing the laundry, so the used towels randomly disappear sometimes. It just seems easier to me to grab a fresh towel from the closet every day, in that situation.
Title: Re: Cold weather and washing
Post by: TootsNYC on February 07, 2014, 04:58:57 PM
I wash my towels because of skin cells, not because of water. About once every 4 to 5 days
Title: Re: Cold weather and washing
Post by: cicero on February 08, 2014, 03:58:45 AM


As I was reading this thread, I realized that when I stay with my parents, I use a new towel every day! I never really thought about it before, even after my dad remarked that they always have more laundry when I'm there. I guess you can't be too subtle with me. ::) Though, in my defense, since there are three people sharing that bathroom, the used towels are always getting moved around, and I don't have a particular one "assigned" to me. They have a three-rod towel rack but also a basket, and my mom has a complicated system of how long the towels stay in each location, because they do have problems with mildew at their house. And then my dad is in charge of doing the laundry, so the used towels randomly disappear sometimes. It just seems easier to me to grab a fresh towel from the closet every day, in that situation.
When I stay at relatives' homes while traveling, I take my towel back to my room and drape it somewhere where it will not cause damage ( plastic chair, my suitcase etc). This way it doesn't get mixed up with the family's towels or routine
Title: Re: Cold weather and washing
Post by: Hmmmmm on February 11, 2014, 06:33:07 PM
I grew up using fresh towels daily. I think it was because my mom did not like seeing towels hanging and we had 4 girls all using the same bathroom. She'd rather we threw the used ones in the laundry and they'd go into the washer/dryer a couple of times per week. I'm pretty sure she also switched out the face/hand towels daily. I had never even heard of anyone re-using a towel as routine. The only time I remember it happening was when we'd go to a lake cabin and I figured it was because there were so few towels.

Then we all went off to college and learned to re-use towels or do laundry a lot more often. Now I pretty much use the same towels for a week unless they get a little musty smelling.
Title: Re: Cold weather and washing
Post by: violinp on February 11, 2014, 06:47:06 PM
Between me and Cabbage (when she's home from school), we have plenty enough towels to use in a week without reusing any. We don't use washcloths for the shower - or at least, I don't. I use a scrubber with my body wash, and I use washcloths to wipe my face when I wash my face after the shower.

I do the towel laundry once a week, and that's when I change out the hand towels in both bathrooms (our bathroom and parents'). I can usually fit both sets of towels and washcloths, plus the dish towels and cleaning rags, into the washer. The only pain in the butt is that one of my towels and washcloths has to be put on the delicate cycle, so I have to wait until Thursday, when I do all my clothes laundry, to wash those.

Right now, the air is so dry here (dry and pretty cold), that I can leave laundry to hang, and it'll be dry in an hour, tops, unless it's very heavy.
Title: Re: Cold weather and washing
Post by: bridalviolet on February 12, 2014, 09:50:05 AM
I change bath towels twice a week more or less, and hand towels every day. Sheets once a week with the rest of the laundry.
Title: Re: Cold weather and washing
Post by: Thipu1 on February 12, 2014, 10:41:53 AM
We have plenty of towels and we both know where they're kept.  If you want a fresh one, go get it and dump the old one in the hamper.