How to go paperless in the kitchen with 3 simple swaps!

Please note that this is a sponsored post in paid partnership with Ten and Co.

Written by Tara McKenna.

Are you addicted to paper towels? I used to be.

Paper towels are perfect for everything, right? They can be used to clean the kitchen, and the whole house. They clean up spills, and double as napkins at dinner time. What more could you ask for?

A lot, actually. Here’s why paper towels kinda suck (source):

  • To make one ton of paper towels 17 trees and 20,000 gallons of water are polluted.

  • Globally, discarded paper towels result in 254 million tons of trash every year.

  • If just 50% of the U.S. population uses 3 paper napkins a day, that totals 450,000,000 napkins for 1 day—or more than 164 billion per year.

  • If every household in the U.S. used just one less 70-sheet roll of paper towels, that would save 544,000 trees each year.

1. Swedish Sponge Cloths

My favourite cleaning companion is my Sponge Cloth. Christen (founder of Ten and Co.) and I came up with a collaborative print which I love and it makes cleaning fun and far less wasteful!

These cloths are soft enough for any surface, but durable enough for stainless steel, cooktops and dishes. They are way more absorbent than a paper towel, sucking up about ¾ of a cup of liquid, making them perfect for spills too.

The best part? They are compostable! Ten and Co. Sponge Cloths are made with plant cellulose and cotton and printed with water based dyes. When they reach the end of their useful life (6-12 months later), they will compost leaving behind no harmful residues.

Ten and Co. Is helping us make easy, quick low waste swaps at home and a Sponge Cloth is a simple and stunning way to do just that!

Say goodbye to your paper towels (they are plain and boring anyway!) and hello to the fun patterns of reusable and compostable Swedish Sponge Cloths! They can be washed in the washing machine or dishwasher, hello convenience.

2. Napkins

I get it, disposable napkins are super convenient. But if you’re washing a load of towels anyway, why not throw in reusable cloth napkins while you’re at it? Ten and Co. has a beautiful collection of durable napkins ready to withstand regular washing, and even your kiddos!

Ten and Co.’s napkins are made of a 50/50 blend of Organic Linen and Hemp, producing perfect texture and softness, measuring 17" x 17" and are printed with water-based dyes. Christen’s selection of patterns and colours will help disguise stains and can be easily mixed and matched!

Switching to reusable cloth napkins will not only reduce waste in your home, but will also elevate your mealtime experience!

3. Tea Towels

While I doubt that paper towels have replaced tea towels in anyone’s home (who knows, though, right?), tea towels are an integral part of a paperless kitchen.

In addition to the gorgeous collaboration sponge cloth with Ten and Co., check out the matching collaboration tea towel!

These Ten and Co. towels are a mid-weight 50/50 cotton-linen blend. This blend allows the towel to soften over time naturally while maintaining durability and absorbency. With a convenient hook sewn into the top and a generous size, this isn't just a pretty kitchen accessory- it will work hard too.

My favourite part about these tea towels is that they are actually absorbent! Unfortunately, tea towels made from synthetic materials (i.e. plastic fibres) are less effective. I've definitely wasted money on tea towels that couldn’t soak up a single drop of water from my dishes, but Ten and Co.’s tea towels are a whole other amazing experience.

Productive, beautiful and sustainable, your kitchen will thank you for a set of these tea towels!

Tips on Going Paperless:

  • It doesn’t have to happen overnight; take some time to transition, use up your current paper towel and napkin supplies, and switch over to your new reusables

  • Make it convenient to use these reusables by making them easy to grab in the kitchen, and designate a laundry basket for when they need washed

  • Stock up on reusables so when they pile up in the laundry basket you don’t run out and revert to paper towels

Save money, save the planet

Going paperless in your home will help you save money over time (after the initial investment), and will reduce your consumption and waste that would result from using disposable paper towels and napkins. Are you ready to make the switch?

For more tips on going zero waste, read the book and head to zero waste 101!