The Walden Effect: Farming, simple living, permaculture, and invention.

Drop the Disposables, Part 2

Mark's three year old paper towel roll.Is there life after paper towels?

When I first suggested to Mike that we stop using paper towels, he was skeptical.  It's easy to see why--they're the go-to fix for almost any mess.  Tear one off to clean up a spill on the floor or use them to drain our beloved bacon.  It was a hard sell, harder in fact than any other green switch we made.  But really, it's so easy and inexpensive to replace your paper towels with more sustainable options....

This post is part of our Drop the Disposables lunchtime series.  Read all of the entries:

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About us: Anna Hess and Mark Hamilton spent over a decade living self-sufficiently in the mountains of Virginia before moving north to start over from scratch in the foothills of Ohio. They've experimented with permaculture, no-till gardening, trailersteading, home-based microbusinesses and much more, writing about their adventures in both blogs and books.

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We're going the same route too -- a roll of paper towels in our house lasts for months. And I second the old cloth diapers route -- besides being green, they soak up a lot! You can even buy unbleached cotton diapers here:
Comment by Jennifer Tue Mar 24 14:28:14 2009

I quit using paper towels ages ago. Mainly because I never could remember to buy them. I like flour sack towels. They last forever and a day and soak up anything. And for the bacon dripping newspapers... boy! They are really great as fire starters in the woodstove!

Comment by jen dehart Wed Mar 25 11:26:13 2009
Sounds like if your name starts with "jen", then paper towels are out. :-) I really like the idea of reusing oil-soaked paper for a firestarter --- Mark likes to buy those fire starter logs for really damp days, but I'd like something less storebought.
Comment by anna Wed Mar 25 15:48:03 2009

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