How Often Should You Replace These Common Bathroom Items?

KOHLER Design GalleryYour bathroom is where you wash the day away and perhaps enjoy a nice soak every now and then. But are the items in your bathroom overused? Your towels, washcloths, and shower curtains don’t last forever. To have a truly hygienic bathroom, deep cleaning isn’t enough. You should be washing and replacing the most-used items in your bathroom on a regular basis to ensure you’re really getting clean in there. Plus, it’s the perfect opportunity to mix up your bathroom style with new pieces!

If you’re not sure how often to replace these items, bookmark this handy guide.

When To Replace Your Most-Used Bathroom Items

1. Bath and Shower Mats: Every Two Years

Your bath and shower mats are among the most-used items in your bathroom, but they’re also among the most durable. You should wash these at least every other week, but if several people use the same bathroom, you’ll want to wash them weekly.

When it comes to replacing your bath mat, the rule of thumb is two years. After two years of consistent use and washing, you’ll notice that it’s time to replace that threadbare bath mat for a new, plush one.

2.  Bathroom Rugs: Every Two Years

Like your bath and shower mat, your bathroom rugs are made to stand up to constant use, but that doesn’t mean they’ll last forever! Most bathroom rugs should be washed monthly. If the rug gets very wet consistently, like it might in a child’s bathroom, it should be washed weekly or every other week.

If your bathroom rug has a rubber backing, the backing will deteriorate with each wash. To slow the deterioration, skip the dryer and hang it to dry. If it doesn’t have a rubber backing, it should hold up to the washer and dryer just fine. Still, you’ll want to replace your bathroom rug every two years or so. (Or, if you have a rug with rubber backing, when that backing has deteriorated. This may be less than two years if you’re washing it regularly.)

3. Towels & Washcloths: Every 2-3 Years

Your bath towels are probably the most-used item in your bathroom, and all that use will wear them down. You should wash your towels and washcloths after every 3-5 uses, although some experts say your washcloth should only be used once before washing.

When it comes to replacing your bath towels and washcloths, there’s no hard and fast rule. You just need to pay attention to the absorbency and softness. If you notice your towels aren’t as effective as they once were, or they’re looking and feeling threadbare, it’s time to replace them. This typically happens after 2-3 years of regular use, but it will ultimately depend on how often your towels and washcloths are used and washed, as well as their quality.

4. Shower Curtains & Shower Curtain Liners: Every 6 Months

If you have a shower curtain instead of a shower door, you may not think about washing or replacing it unless you’re redecorating your bathroom. While your shower curtain doesn’t need to be washed or replaced as often as the other items in your bathroom, you should clean it now and then.

If you have a plastic shower curtain liner, it’s easy to see when mold, mildew, or other buildup has accumulated. You can wash it with a diluted bleach solution and a sponge, throw it in the washing machine (hang to dry), or just toss it and purchase a new one. Most fabric shower curtains are machine washable, but always check the care instructions before washing. Aim to wash your shower curtain every 6 months. Fabric shower curtains don’t need to be replaced very often, and most people don’t replace it until they redecorate their bathroom.

5. Loofahs: Every 1-2 Months

Loofahs, whether natural or plastic, are a popular washcloth replacement. What many don’t realize is that they can harbor bacteria. While you can’t throw your loofah in the washer, you can—and should—clean them weekly in a diluted bleach solution. Simply soak it in 1:9 mixture of bleach and water (1 part bleach to 9 parts water) for 5-10 minutes, making sure to rinse well before using again.

Even with weekly cleaning, you should replace natural loofahs every 3-4 weeks and plastic loofahs every two months.

6. Toothbrushes: Every 3-4 Months

Like your loofah, your toothbrush can accumulate and harbor bacteria. In addition, the bristles wear down. As the bristles wear down, your toothbrush becomes less effective. Yep, using a toothbrush for too long can actually have a negative impact on your dental health! To ensure your toothbrush is the cleanest and most effective, replace it every 3-4 months.

7. Bathtub or Shower: Every 10-15 Years

The lifespan of your bathtub or shower depends on a few factors: the material it’s made out of, how often it’s used, and whether it has been refinished or reglazed. Stains and leaks are two major signs it’s time to replace your tub, and either can happen at any time during the life of your tub. If your bathtub or shower has been reglazed or refinished, it’s recommended that you replace it 10-15 years after having this done.