Kleenex Disposable Hand Towels: What The Heck?!

Posted by Mrs Money on May 17th, 2010

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The other day I was reading a magazine and came across an advertisement for new Kleenex disposable hand towels. After I got over the initial disgust, I decided to check them out and see what Kleenex has to say about them. On their website, they state that “your hands are only as clean as the towel used to clean them.”  “A clean, fresh towel every time.”  Come on!  If you’re really that scared of germs, you need more than disposable hand towels.

Here are the problems I have with disposable hand towels:

-They consume more resources

-They create more waste

-They teach people (and children) that disposable is better

-They are pointless

It just sickens me to think that a huge corporation like Kleenex would produce and market a product like this.  With all the natural resources being consumed, the last thing we need is another disposable product, especially one that is pretty much useless and replaces something that has worked well for so many years.

Have you seen the ads for Kleenex hand towels?  What’s your opinion?

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30 Responses to “Kleenex Disposable Hand Towels: What The Heck?!”


  1. Courtney says:

    I thought the EXACT same thing! I checked to see if they were at least made by recycled materials–no such luck! I’m sure if they were made from recycled materials they would be advertising it–just says they are “cottony”. It’s really horrible! Everyone has to make their own choices as far as “going green”, but it does feel like a punch to the gut when there’s a new paper invention to make life “more convenient”… Enjoy the convenience, we may have no liveable planet in 40 years!

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  2. Jenny says:

    Things like this drive me nuts! I mean, I can see using paper towels in certain settings. I used to work in a hospital and there was no way we could use cloth towels. A lot of the people there were sick and more people than you think don’t really wash their hands; they just moisten their fingertips and then reach for the towel. I’m glad in that case it was a paper one. At home, though, we’ve all but banned paper towels–and I am still sitting here trying to figure out how this “new” Kleenex thing is different from a paper towel, other than the appearance and the cost. I guess the solution would be blow dryers, or for everyone to carry their own little washcloth-sized towel.

    I hate how disposable products companies make so much money off people’s hysterics over germs. My mom is totally one of them. They use paper towels, disposable tissues, and bottled water. She doesn’t understand why I want to wipe my baby’s butt with a cloth wipe. When she sees me using a hanky or a cloth baby wipe she voices her concerns that it may not be as sanitary and has asked me in the past if it’s possible that my daughter’s cloth diapers could be harboring bacteria. One time this past winter she told me she put Neosporin on my daughter’s face because it was a little chapped and red. That doesn’t call for antibiotic ointment!

    Ugh. And I remember a certain paper towel commercial featuring a little girl who wanted to eat an apple. It said, “You only wanted her to eat the apple, right?” and then went on to tell how many germs were probably on that kitchen towel of yours. Well, my goodness. It is truly a wonder I’m not dead yet. They should’ve showed all the pesticides that were probably on the apple. Most people never worry about that because there’s very little money to be made (and a ton of money to be lost) in making them worry.

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    ISA Reply:

    you’re on to something about carrying your own little towel, I think I am going to start doing just that!

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  3. Jenny says:

    Oh my GOSH. I was just reading over Kleenex’s info and they’ve made up a little song for your kids to sing while using their Kleenex-brand disposable hand towels. Here’s an excerpt:

    “A Kleenex Hand Towel that’s mine all mine/And a song that’s exactly two clean hands long/No yucky old towel’s gonna ruin my day/I dry my hands the Kleenex towel way”

    This is just WAY over the line! Is OCD a prerequisite for working at this company?

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  4. My goodness. When I think of the trees we cut down to make disposable towels (that fill our landfills) . . . one could easily make a ‘counter commercial’ by showing tree cutters flattening a forest, followed by shots of a landfill crammed full of paper (probably bleached paper too) – perhaps all to the tune of the ditty Jenny mentioned.

    We believe in germs. Live with ‘em, develop your immunities, become a healthy adult. (Best excuse for not cleaning the house, ever. :p

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  5. I thought the same thing! It’s funny because most places are trying to “go green” and they are doing the complete opposite.

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  6. I saw this commercial on television and of course the music was all fluffy and happy sounding. That is the first thing I thought was how wasteful! It’s like an addiction, using paper towels in the home. The more you use them, the more you think you can’t live without them. And they are expensive because the cheap ones you have to use twice or three times as many just to get your hands dry.

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  7. kimberly says:

    i totally see your point, but my first thought was that if I had kids I would think that was a great idea – I don’t think I would consider buying them just for me though

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  8. Forest says:

    That is just outrageous….. When will they learn :(…. If only people en mass were caring enough to boycott such crap!

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  9. Jennifer says:

    HATE them! I thought it was a joke as I first saw the commercial the day after Earth Day. Huge step in the wrong direction.

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  10. I think it’s absolutely ridiculous and is perpetuating the idea that we live in a world full of bad GERMS and BUGS and BACTERIA that are going to attack us unless we spray them or wipe them or disinfect them into oblivion.
    Little do most people know that we have more bacteria in our gut than cells in our entire body.

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    Cynthia Reply:

    My father has MRSA, an antibiotic resistant strain of staph. We use these towels in my parent’s home to avoid the spread of MRSA. This was after my brother used a hand towel that my father used, and now he has MRSA too.

    Believe me, they are worthwhile. It is a matter of something more than GERMS, BUGS and BACTERIA. Especially because this nasty little thing cannot ever be cured by antibiotics.

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    A.L. Reply:

    This is what I was thinking. I’ve had 2 cases of MRSA in the last two years, one in which i was hospitalized because the antibiotics had no effect on it so I needed large doses of IV antibiotics.
    Whenever i ask the doctors why I’m getting it, they tell me it is becoming more of a community acquired bacteria, rather than just getting it from the hospital in previous times. Now you can pick it up almost anywhere, and such as in my case, can become possibly fatal quite quickly. (2.5 days from onset to hospitalization to stop the rapid spread even with oral antibiotics).
    I don’t like wasting so much either, but things are not the same nowadays as back when due to people overusing antibiotics and such and the creation of these ‘superbugs.’

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  11. What the hell.

    That would probably best describe my feelings for the disposable hand towels.

    D:

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  12. Sam Chen says:

    At PeopleTowels, we’re trying to do the exact opposite! We’re encouraging people to adopt a new eco-habit – “B.Y.O.T.” or “Bring Your Own Towel” everywhere.

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  13. That’s the craziest thing I’ve seen in a while! I just looked them up online, and am totally disgusted! What’s next? Disposable beach towels…Gotta avoid those nasty, scary beach germs, after all.

    When I think of all the stuff I did/touched/ate during my childhood, it’s a wonder I’m still here according to modern standards :-)

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  14. mkg says:

    this was my response these towels were sponsoring some show i was watching and it made me look at the show and think really??? how ridiculous.

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  15. Oh, but they make them so convenient! Of course, convenience comes with a premium too, right!

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  16. AJK says:

    I just saw this ad for the first time on TV about 5 minutes ago, and was so outraged I had to google other’s responses!

    Proctor and Gamble (maker of Puff’s tissues) is launching a Green for the Future campaign, pubicly encouraging consumers to preserve our resources and use green products- Kleenex’s parent company (Kimberly-Clark) needs to hurry up and take the earth friendly hint instead of manufacturing wasteful products and encouraging people to buy something as ridiculous as ‘disposable paper towels,” for your own home!! Even gas stations, rest stops, and restaurants are going earth friendly by removing paper towel dispensers and installing energy efficient hand dryers! I’m young and trying to go as green as I can one step at a time, but as a newbie I still recognize the wastefulness of this product immediately! Boo on you, Kleenex

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  17. Karen says:

    OMG, I thought the SAME thing when I saw those commercials. What a terrible idea! The idiot in their marketing dept who thought it was a good idea to start selling a product like that right now with the economy so bad and people more conscious about the environment needs a smack in the head.

    But it did get me thinking. I was SO offended by the Kleenex hand towels, but then I started thinking what’s REALLY the difference between those and paper towels? And I use paper towels. Eep.

    I try to only use them for really unsanitary messes, i.e. cleaning the counters after making chicken or something. But yeah. It’s a bad habit that’s pretty wasteful and expensive.

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  18. I hate those things. I don’t get them at all.

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  19. Wubbagotcha says:

    I love it. I love disposable everything. When the sun burns out… we are all popsicles anyway. Everything I buy is disposable and convenient and I don’t mind paying extra for it.

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    vbn Reply:

    idiot

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    Me Reply:

    Why because they dont agree with you? You know who are idiots – those who believe global warming exists and that using kleenex hand towels are going to destroy the earth. What are hand towels made if and how are they cleaned? Right cotton and water…

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  20. Brooke says:

    My exact response. I was so outraged when I saw the commercial! We WASH OUR HANDS before we use towels. If your too gross to do that as an adult/teenager/etc then even still it’s a stupid option. What’s the freaking POINT?!

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  21. RobAlister says:

    There’s nothing wrong with these towels and even if they are wasteful we aren’t going to run out of material for them anytime soon. People have been complaining about this kind of stuff for decades and we still have trees and cotton and other materials waiting to be used.

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