Guide to Washing Your Swedish Dishcloths

Apart from a few sustainability geeks, most people have never even thought of using Swedish dishcloths. So it is understandable to be confused when you get your first set, especially when it comes to cleaning these dishcloths.

I mean, can you even clean them? And if so how? Also, how do you dry them afterward?

If these are the questions that you have, you’ve come to the right place – we plan to answer them today.

We will dive deep into this and so much more. So put your Swedish dishcloths down for a minute – we’ve got some news for you!

Can Swedish dishcloths be washed?

Yes, Swedish dishcloths can be washed. Doing so keeps them clean and fresh. And there are several ways how you can wash your Swedish dishcloths.

How often should you wash Swedish dishcloths?

Ideally, you should wash your Swedish dishcloth after every use. This usually involves rinsing it out to get rid of any debris then leaving it out to dry. Beyond this, you should disinfect it every two to three days depending on how you use it.

For instance, if you use it to wipe surfaces that have come into contact with raw meat, you should disinfect it soon after. This is the best way to prevent cross-contamination.

How to properly wash Swedish dishcloths

Apart from the usual rinsing, there are several ways you can clean your Swedish dishcloths. These include:

Using a dishwasher

This is one of the most popular and gentle ways to wash Swedish dishcloths. All you have to do is place your dirty dishcloths on the top rack of the dishwasher, fill the machine with your dirty utensils, and run a normal cycle.

If you want to disinfect them, you can run a hot and long cycle instead.

Once you are done, remove your Swedish dishcloths from the machine before you dry the utensils.

Using a washing machine

This is one of the most effective ways to clean Swedish dishcloths. So much so that Wettex USA recommends it as the preferred way to clean their dishcloths.

The company’s website goes as far as stating that when their Swedish dishcloths are washed this way at temperatures of around 140 degrees Fahrenheit, they last for several years.

The good news is that this washing method requires no great effort on your part – just toss your dishcloth in with the rest of your laundry and run a warm wash cycle. As long as you don’t add any fabric softener, you will be fine.

Why shouldn’t you add fabric softener when washing your Swedish dishcloths in the washing machine, you ask? Well, this laundry agent not only reduces your dishcloth’s absorbance over time but also contains a ton of chemicals.

Using a microwave

If you are looking for a cleaning method that is easy on your Swedish dishcloths, you should consider microwaving them.

Before you do so though, you will need to get them wet – this ensures even heat distribution and prevents fires.

Afterward, microwave them on high for 1 minute. Once you’re done, get them out using prongs or wait for them to cool first.


When dealing with very filthy dishcloths, boiling is one of the best ways to go.

Although it does make them deteriorate faster and shouldn’t be done regularly, it is quite effective.

And all you need is a pot of water. After bringing the water to boil, toss your Swedish dishcloths inside and let them boil for several minutes.

Afterward, remove them using prongs or wait for the water to cool before wringing them dry.


Bleaching should only be an option when dealing with heavily soiled dishcloths.

To do so, mix one quart of warm water with a ¼ to ½ teaspoon of bleach in a basin.

Afterward, toss your dishcloths on the solution and let them soak for a minute.

How to keep your Swedish dishcloths from staining

If you are worried about staining your Swedish dishcloths, keep them away from greasy foods and thick sauces.

Also, don’t use them to wash your coffee machine, and remember to rinse them out once you are done using them.

And if they accidentally get something grimy, use warm water for the rinsing.

How and where to dry Swedish dishcloths

Swedish dishcloths should be air-dried in a well-ventilated part of your home. You can hang them over a faucet/sink, lay them flat on the kitchen counter, or hang them along the edge of the sink to dry.

Alternatively, you could hang them up on wall hooks, cupboard hooks, or fridge magnets.

Can you put Swedish dishcloths in the dryer?

No, you shouldn’t put Swedish dishcloths in the dryer. Since they are made of cotton and cellulose, they will shrink when exposed to heat for a long time.

Even the drying cycle of your dishwasher would be too much for them.

How do you store Swedish dishcloths?

Once you are done washing and drying your Swedish dishcloths you can store them upright in a napkin holder or stack them on top of each other in a drawer. You can even use a drawer divider if you like.

However, these storage methods only work if your dishcloths dry into a flat rectangular mass, which they don’t always do.

They usually take the shape of the surface you dry them on. So if you dry them on a faucet/sink, they will be curved in the middle and even fall off once they are dry.

But if you dry them on a countertop, they will be flat and rectangular – they will take longer to dry though.

Take care of your Swedish dishcloths

Ultimately, the better you are at taking care of your Swedish dishcloths, the longer they will last.

So don’t use them on rough surfaces, coffee machines, and grimy pans. And, more importantly, wash them properly and regularly, and always air dry them effectively.

If you keep at it, they may serve you for years!

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