It is easy to know when you will replace the bread in your fridge or throw away the bottle of juice. Most things today come with an expiration date.
It could be food items, with expiration dates as soon as a week, your cosmetics which have a lifetime of a few good years or medicines which last a couple of years before they need to be thrown out.
But some items do not come with a fixed lifetime. Household items such as upholstery, electronic items, furniture as well as crockery last as well as you use them and care for them.
Towels: the Unsung Heroes
Among these items is one which we use on a daily basis yet not give a second thought to. These are towels. Whether it is the bigger ones to dry yourself after a bath or the smaller ones to clean the kitchen counter, we use towels regularly. The constant cleaning action and the rough action by the washer and the dryer can leave your towels feeling old and frayed. So how do you know when is the right time to replace your towels?
Here are 5 signs to watch out for.
Ideally, you know it is time to say goodbye to your towels when
1. They Stop Functioning as Towels
When towels lose their soft, fluffy nature and are no longer fresh even after laundering, it is a sign that your towels have reached the last stage of their useful cycle. They simply need to be replaced.
2. You Observe Seams and Threads Pulling Away
If your towels, though fresh, start pulling seams and strings and have started getting holes in them then it is time they were thrown away. Good quality towels don’t usually get ripped easily, hence when they do; it means that they cannot be used anymore.
3. When Edges are Visibly Frayed
Towel wear and tear occurs from excessive use which causes fraying. Hence fraying is an indication that you have been using the towels for a long time and now it is time to replace them.
4. When Stains Become a Pain
Of course towel stains don’t cause physical pain. what I am implying is when stains become a pain to get cleaned up.
No matter how much you clean them, the stubborn stains are always there. No towel looks good with a large blotch on it, which is why stained towels should not be used.
Besides, excessive washing can also turn your soft towels into an abrasive cloth which is a good reason for replacement. Face towels especially are supposed to be soft and gentle, and rough surfaces can actually be harmful to use.
Generally it is safe to assume that the average age of a towel is between 2 to 5 years depending upon frequency of use as well as type of cloth used and the quality of the towel material.
How long do you use for towels for? And how frequently do you discard your towels. We would love to know.
By Azzam Sheikh
This article has been written by Azzam Sheikh, leading towel expert and part of the team at The Towel Shop, UK.