Is it Bad to Wash Kitchen Towels with Bath Towels?

We all like to try and separate our laundry into lights, darks and colours, but should you separate different kinds of towels too?

Many people wonder about whether or not it’s ok to wash bath towels with kitchen towels, or if they should be separated.

Kitchen towels are used for all manner of things, from drying dishes to sometimes even wiping surfaces.

It’s safe to say there will be germs, bacteria and food on kitchen towels, so they need to be washed at a high temperature to kill the germs.

If you wash kitchen and bath towels together at a lower temperature end up covering your bath towels in kitchen germs.

Things to consider if you wash bath and kitchen towels together


Are you using a higher temperature or a boil wash to fully kill any germs?

If you wash bath and kitchen towels together it is best to wash them at a higher temperature than your normal wash.

It is recommended by most experts including the NHS that towels are washed at 60 °C or above to truly have any effect on the killing of germs.

Antibacterial detergent

If you do like the eco friendly wash at 30°C then you may want to consider using an antibacterial detergent which will kill germs in your wash cycle.

Some detergents are designed to work more effectively at colder temperatures, so if in doubt, read up on your options before buying your cleaning supplies.


There is always the option to use bleach if you have white towels, as this is a known killer of germs and bacteria, however bleach can cause stains to coloured/darker items and too much bleach can eventually weaken a fabric.

Towel setting on machine

Does your machine have a setting specifically for towels? The towel setting will more than likely be a hot wash or a boil wash and if combined with a bleach or antibacterial detergent, washing towels together will be perfectly acceptable.

Should you wash bath towels with kitchen towels?

You can wash bath and kitchen towels together, but you should wash them at a higher temperature (60 °C or above) in order to kill germs.

It’s also fine to separate your towel types and wash them as a different load to one another to be on the safe side.

Quick Tip: Washing machine manufacturers do suggest running a 60-90°C wash at least once a month to help break down grease or even mould that builds up from washing at cooler temperatures.

Try timing your towel washing with your monthly hot wash to get the best results for your towels.