This kitchen counter staple traps oils, fats, and bacteria, which makes them prone to a funky smell if you don’t wash them frequently, says Eating Well magazine. Wash the dishcloth after every use with dish soap and hot water, then let it hang to dry between uses. Then launder them in the washing machine every few days on the hottest cycle, separate from other laundry. “Don’t let the cloths hang out in the washer,” according to Stacy Fraser, Eating Well test kitchen manager. “Get them into the dryer as soon as possible to prevent any straggling bacteria from growing again.” Here are other surprisingly germy kitchen items you don’t think to clean.
Jo Gilchrist, a 27-year-old mom in the prime of her life, was paralyzed after contracting an antibiotic-resistant MRSA infection. The source of this devastating bacteria? An unwashed makeup brush. When she borrowed a friend’s brush she inadvertently swept the bacteria into an open sore left by a pimple, which then spread the infection throughout her body. While most of us won’t see such horrific consequences from rarely cleaned brushes, almost all of us carry the staphylococcus bacteria on our skin. So it’s likely that your makeup brushes, sponges, and applicators carry that and other harmful germs too. To avoid infection, breakouts, or skin irritation, experts recommend washing your brushes in warm soapy water after each use or at least once a week.