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When we had a rainy day, I took the kids to a nature center. After watching a movie about the creation of Cape Cod (spoiler: glaciers melting) and spending 20 minutes in the butterfly sanctuary, we stopped by the gift shop.
That’s when I saw them. It was love at first sight.
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Oh hello, Swedish dishcloths
Dishcloth doesn’t really cover it. Maybe there’s something lost in translation? Swedish dishcloths can replace sponges, paper towels, rags, wipes and dish cloths. Total kitchen powerhouse.
Fast facts on Swedish dishcloths:
- does the work of a sponge, roll of paper towels, cleaning wipes, rags, dish towel
- lasts 6 to 12 months
- don’t stink like sponges (btw, how long does your sponge last? Mine don’t make it a month)
- made of all-natural cellulose and cotton usually with biodegradable ink…why?
- because you can compost them! zero waste.
hold a lot of water (internet thinks up to 15x their weight. I did not run that experiment myself, but it’s believable.)
- machine-washable (or dishwasher, read on)
- withstands boiling (that might decrease their lifespan (also, why would you boil your dishcloth?) but, no judgment. You’re not harming anyone.)
- leaves less streaks on appliances than typical cleaning wipes
- feel really stiff when dry but soften like a cloth when damp
Want more details?
Swedish dishcloths aren’t just natural and biodegradable…they are so clean, you can compost them! Whaaaaat?!
That’s how I felt when I found out anyway. Use a dishcloth for a year, and then just toss it on top of my compost? Sold.
Oh wait, you aren’t sure if it’s clean enough to put into your compost bin? Just machine wash it with your favorite natural detergent before you put it out to biodegrade.
Yes, you can machine wash something that is compostable. It makes my head whirl.
Or you can be lazy like me and occasionally throw your Swedish dishcloths into the dishwasher instead of walking all the way over to the washing machine because the dishwasher is so much closer to the kitchen sink.
What’s my motivation here?
Well, I am not going to get rich selling Swedish dishcloths.
If you click through one of these links and buy a $10 pack of 2 (simple) or 4 (fancy) dishcloths, I will make a small commission, but it won’t be enough to buy a pack of gum. However, if you buy three packs of Swedish dishcloths…thank you for the gum.
One problem for me, these things last so long you will now have enough Swedish dishcloths for the next three years, and you can give the third pack to a friend.
So my real motivation is that I really do use this kitchen product. I think it’s special, and I thought you might like to read about it and possibly give it a try. Plus, there’s a chance this sucker is going to go viral, and I want to be ahead of the excitement. (Update: That turned out to be pretty accurate.)
Do you recognize that dishcloth with the pumpkins on it? I wrote a farmstand5 post about the farmers market stand where I found it.
The pumpkin dishcloth is my second one. My first one is four months old now. It’s the original Swedish dishcloths that I encountered in the gift shop in Cape Cod.
Here is a photo of my first dishcloth after four months of daily use. Not bad. It’s not ready for the compost pile yet.
My favorite thing
The best thing about Swedish dishcloths is that when you use them, you are doing a good thing for the Earth with no corresponding personal sacrifice or effort.
These are really useful around the house. They work. You would use them even if you wanted to destroy the Earth because they soak up big spills in one swipe. I know we’ve all seen that happen in paper towel commercials. I wouldn’t be surprised if the actors were holding Swedish dishcloths under those flimsy paper towels.
My second favorite thing
These cloths wipe countertops and appliances with less streaking than sponges, wipes or paper towels. Streaking bothers me. It might not bother you. Even if it doesn’t, less streaking is preferable.
You can even find these durable, biodegradable dishcloths for just a few dollars each.
There are plenty of reviews of handmade products in our future together. I just felt inspired to write about eco-friendly dishcloths today.
What do you think about Swedish dishcloths? Add a comment and let us know.
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