Why do hotels use white towels? How do they keep them smelling fresh? Do hotels bleach towels? What washing powder do they use? Why do they not use fabric softener?

When you are staying in an amazing hotel with pristine white fresh-smelling towels you might find yourself asking just how exactly they manage it. How do they manage to keep their towels so perfect, what is the secret and how might I manage to do the same for myself? Here we will have a look at a few of the tricks of the trade and just what to use to have your own towels stay lovely and fresh for longer.

Why do hotels use white towels?

Hotels use white towels for a number of reasons. A perfectly clean white towel shows makes the hotel look wonderfully clean as well. Crisp and spotless towels and linens will give your guests the impression of cleanliness and freshness, while white is also a great colour for bringing together the rest of the room. It is likely to go with any décor and tie the room together to give an overall look that will keep your guests happy and have them coming back again and again.

How do hotels keep their towels smelling fresh?

There are plenty of ways that people will tell you that work, to keep towels and bedding smelling fresh, but one of the key ones might sound a little bit unusual. Vinegar is lauded as perhaps the best way to keep your linens fresh and clean but there is a solid foundation for this. Vinegar has been used for over two thousand years as a disinfectant, with Hippocrates the father of modern medicine using it as a treatment for some illnesses around 400 years BC. If it was good enough for him then it is hardly surprising that it is good enough to combat any bacteria and smell in your towels and sheets.

Do hotels bleach towels?

It is true that bleach can be a highly effective cleaning tool and is good for bringing out the whiteness in fabrics but it is also very harsh. Using bleach can cause damage to your towels and other materials, especially over protracted exposure, so if you are hoping to use the same bedding and towels for a longer time then bleach should be avoided wherever possible.

That being said, for hotels that are likely to change out their linens often it is possible that they might use bleach to keep everything pristine and germ-free as well as bright white. In that case, it is still important not to use too much bleach and not to use it every wash cycle. Bleach is definitely one way to keep your towels looking clean but the disadvantages can make it a choice to be avoided if at all possible. Then again if you know you have plenty of replacements that will look wonderfully fresh and brilliantly white from somewhere like Thai Hotel Towel then this is not something you should have to worry about.

What washing powder do hotels use?

There are a huge number of brands and types of washing powder to choose from with some people preferring one and others another. Hotels are no different, and there is no one washing powder that every hotel will use. There are however a few things to keep in mind. You don’t want anything too harsh. Having your guests come out in rashes or itching because of the detergent you use would be very bad for business. It is therefore in your interest to use something hypo-allergenic that won’t be an irritant to guests with sensitive skin.

You also want to make sure it can get the job done. As we have already mentioned having bright and spotless towels and bedding is essential for the success of your hotel and using a washing powder that doesn’t actually get stains out would require using more bleach or other means that could wear down your towels. In general, hotels will try and use a tried and tested brand that has worked well for years and won’t trigger or cause any skin irritation or allergies. Ideally, you can double-check when you purchase your towels and bedding what the best means to clean them is to get the best results without having to replace them too often.

Why do hotels not use fabric softener?

The name fabric softener makes it sound like an excellent addition to your washing cycle, giving you softer and more comfortable material but this is not always the case. Some fabrics can actually be harmed or damaged by fabric softener so if in doubt do not put it in. Further, when it comes to hotels fabric softener can clog up the pores in your sheets stopping them from breathing and giving the luxurious look and feel that you want. It can actually take away some of the glossy shine and high-quality appearance of your linens and leave you with more of a dull and heavier end product. The coating from the fabric softener builds up over time and takes away the natural luxury of your original sheets.

Baking soda is another of the tricks of the trade that hotels sometimes use with their washing powder to give them clean sparkling white sheets that look and feel great every time. Coldwater can also be a good way to get out stains and the entire process should still leave you with soft, comfortable, and disinfected sheets without having to add fabric softener or bleach.


There are several ways in which a hotel could whiten and brighten up their towels and linens from the correct washing powder and baking powder to bleach or non-bio hypo-allergenic detergents. Vinegar is one of the true top tips for the industry and over centuries has proven to be a fantastic disinfectant and cleaner. If you really want pristine towels and bedding that will stay whiter longer try a quality supplier like Thai Hotel Towel and have a look at the large array of linens to suit you.

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