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It's not a sponge, and it's not a spray.

Jaime Ritter
January 31, 2018

In case you haven't heard, your kitchen is basically a disgusting petri dish—even if you do your dishes and brush up spills daily.

Dr. Charles Gerba, a microbiologist and professor at the University of Arizona in Tuscon, told Food and Wine, “In most cases, it’s safer to make a salad on a toilet seat than it is to make one on a cutting board. People disinfect their toilet seats all the time, but they don’t realize that they really need to pay attention in the kitchen too.”

Dangerous bacteria like E.coli and salmonella can be found in up to 10 percent of kitchens—but it turns out there's a better way clean besides spraying harsh chemicals all over your home and ineffectually wiping at them with a paper towel.

The next time you have a nasty spill, or want to scrub down your kitchen counters, pick up a pack of microfiber cloths.

While regular dish towels spread bacteria all over the countertops, microfiber cloths are made of fine fiber strands that allow them to more effectively absorb water. Though not all microfiber cloths are anti-microbial, they're able to remove bacteria (such as salmonella, E.coli, and Campylobacter) and other debris from kitchen surfaces with ease.

Researchers from The University of North Carolina's Medical School Department of Hospital Epidemiology conducted a study where they disinfected hospital rooms with a traditional cotton mop and a microfiber mop. The bacteria culture taken after a traditional wet mop showed only a 32% reduction of microbes, whereas the microfiber mop cleaning showed a 95% reduction.

If you're like me and that makes you want to run home and deep clean your kitchen right now, pick up a pack of microfiber cloths first (these ones are just $7 for a pack of 5, Amazon). The best part? You can throw them into your washing machine and reuse them hundreds of times.