These alternatives to disposable paper towels are ideal for the kitchen. Cheap disposable kitchen roll just falls apart. But the luxury versions actually take longer to break down in landfill, and are still wasteful, expensive (you only use them once) and sold in plastic. These alternatives are all sent in zero waste packaging. Two caveats: use them with biodegradable cleaning products (so you don’t pollute the oceans, when you wash them in the machine). And don’t use fabric conditioner (or bleach) or you’ll reduce absorbency.
- Leave No Trace Reusable Cotton Kitchen Roll is handmade in the UK from highly absorbent organic cotton terry cloth in 4 colours (peach, mustard, sandalwood or navy). They are good to mop up spills. The 6 sheets come with poppers, to wrap around your kitchen roll holder (or for a few pounds, add a rubberwood kitchen roll holder).
- Tabitha Eve Cotton Towels are sold in a pack of 5. They are super-absorbent due to the ‘birdseye’ weave of the cotton, ideal to wipe down surfaces.
- Bambaw Kitchen Towels are very strong towels, 20 on a roll. They are also good as face wipes and baby wipes. They can be used on steel, granite, plastic, wood, ceramic, and also remove smudges from glass. The roll will last the same as 65 rolls of disposable kitchen roll, so work out cheaper, and are sold wrapped in paper.
- The Conscious Sewist makes unpaper towels from Leicestershire. These lovely reusable towels are in lots of pretty designs and colours, and backed with cotton that is leftover from the garment industry. The towels also feature hemp, a natural fibre that is resistant to mildew and mould.
- Vesta Living Reusable Cleaning Wipes are ethically produced in the UK, in 7 colours and patterns, in packs of 6, 12 or 24. These fit around your kitchen roll holder. The organic cotton range is in neutral white, undyed, plain blush or turquoise.
- Earth Kind offers lovely handmade Unpaper tolls from Yorkshire. They are sold in many designs, with poppers to fit around conventional kitchen roll holders (don’t use metal snaps on polished surfaces). Thin kitchen roll tends to not be very good, and the thick brands take a long time to break down in landfill. Avoid fabric conditioner in the washing machine, as this will reduce absorbency.
- Ecoegg Reusable Bamboo Kitchen Towels are made from the world’s fastest-growing grass (certified industrial organic bamboo is not taken from panda habitats). These are very strong and can be used wet or dry. You get 20 sheets per roll that last up to 85 washes. Made in the UK (these don’t roll after first use, so stack them somewhere safe).