Expectation: Each Week.
Humans shed 500 million skin cells every single day according to Science Daily– a lot of which will be found in our beds.
“Oh… Probably…once a month? Yeah, once a month. And I usually get make-up stains all over them, which looks really disgusting.”
…your duvet & pillows?
Expectation: Every few months.
Up to a third of the weight a pillow that’s never been washed, could be made up of dead skin, bugs, mites and their faeces, show study by British health care provider Barts and the London NHS Trust.
“Em… Never? So, since I moved out of my parent’s place I haven’t done it. My mum probably did, when I was younger, but I haven’t – it’s been nearly two and a half years, and I have never washed them.”
…your tea towels?
Expectation: After two or three uses.
If not, this multi-functional kitchen essential may cause cross-contamination or illness, as seen in 2014 study looking at bacteria in tea towels. E. coli was present in a quarter of the tested towels, and 89% of them were home to coliform bacteria. There was a direct correlation between the amount of bacteria found, and the frequency of washing.
“Em… I would say ideally when they won’t dry things anymore, when they’re too wet – but in my flat, I honestly haven’t washed them once.”
Expectation: Every 3-4 months
Seeing that toothbrushes are constantly in contact with water, they make for a perfect breeding ground for germs, fungi and bacteria. Always shake toothbrush “vigorously under tap water and store it in an upright position so that it can air out” after use, according to celebrity dentist Dr Bill Dorfman.
“Hmm, like every two months? Or maybe three months, maybe six months – I actually don’t know! I think it changes – I just wait until it’s like dud.”
This information may come as a sigh of relief, as you realize there are others, just as gross as you – or it may come as a harsh reality-check, pushing your bad habits into the light. Either way, here’s how to instantly move towards a less Shrek-like way of existence: Place your pillows in direct sunlight, allowing them to air. The sun will act as a natural anti-bacterial agent, cleaning out any… Oh, wait, we live in Scotland. Never mind.