By now we are all experts when it comes to recycling and are aware that most paper products are eco-friendly. But what if you could take an extra step to rid the environment of excess paper and save money at the supermarket. What's your favourite paper towel alternative?

If you thought about every time you used a paper towel and disposed of it, then thought about how many other people do the same thing, that’s a whole lotta paper and let’s face it, a waste of money!

There's a style of dish cloth that's biodegradable, compostable and lasts around 6 months. They can be cleaned the washing machine or the dishwasher, and you may know them as a Swedish Dish Cloth.

These cloths are made from a combination of cellulose (wood pulp) and cotton. They absorb a lot of liquid. As a paper towel alternative they outperform in absorption.

How is using a biodegradable sponge cloth more eco-friendly than paper towel?

  • Our cloths are made from 100% renewable resources and don't contain any plastic packaging
  • Contains no petroleum or other fossil fuel products
  • Reusable and washable – 1 cloth replacing up to 15 rolls of paper towels
  • Reduces waste and amount of material going into landfill
  • They are reusable up to 300 times and can be washed in the dishwasher or washing machine.
  • When completely dry they can absorb up to 150ml of liquid.

What are other options as a paper towel alternative?

Good Change paper towel alternative made from bamboo

Another popular choice as a paper towel alternative is reusable bamboo towel. It is more visually similar to paper towel because it's on a perforated roll and it's thinner like paper towel, but each sheet is reusable, so don't throw it out after you've used it once. The manufacturers of the Good Change roll pictured above advertise that it replaces 65 rolls of paper towel. The average roll of paper towel at the supermarket costs around $2. Even at $1.50, that's close to $100 in paper towel vs $15 for one of these.

It's not only the price that makes bamboo towels a better alternative to paper towel. They are streak free, tougher and more absorbent than their paper counterparts. You can machine wash them and use them over and over again. When they finally start falling apart, you can simply put them in your compost and send them back to the earth. Wash in the washing machine with just laundry liquid or powder (no fabric softener) or if you just need to kill bacteria, like you can with any kitchen sponge, wet it and microwave it for 90 seconds. You can also clean them on the top rack of your dishwasher.

Apart from cleaning, another great thing you can do with these is to wet them and wrap your fruit & veg in the fridge to keep them fresh. You can do the same thing with paper towel, but fabrics that won't easily break down are far better. Whether it's one of these or a tea towel, it's a great way to get your fresh produce to stay fresher for longer.

Another use for these is to use them as an alternative to baby wipes or for cleaning up pet messes. If you're going to do this, we have the following advice / caution:-

  1. Make sure you know which ones you're using for baby or animal poop, try cutting the corner off so you know not to accidentally take them in to the kitchen to wipe down a bench.
  2. When you wash them, use a hot wash, a minimum of 60C. When you do this they will shrink a little in the wash.

You may not get as many repeat uses from them as you would with general cleaning, but it's still a significant saving and better for the planet than single use wet wipes.