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The Best Eco Alternatives to Kitchen Roll or Paper Towels

Whether it's wiping up spills or grease, polishing up worktops, or cleaning mucky hands & faces, kitchen roll or paper towels have been a handy companion around the home.

However costs are rising across the board. As we overheard one elderly couple say at the supermarket recently 'Oh no, if it's not on offer, we won't be buying it'.

Plus of course they aren't particularly eco friendly. There's the environmental impact of producing kitchen paper or towels which are just discarded after a single use.

Can you flush kitchen roll down the toilet?

No,you definitely should NOT flush kitchen roll down the toilet. As Elvira Gabos, head of the Unflushables team at Southern Water explains 'Kitchen roll should NEVER be flushed down the toilet. It won't break down in water and can block your pipes and create fatbergs in our sewers.'

How to dispose of kitchen roll

To dispose of kitchen roll safely, either:

  • Compost it in home composting
  • Bin it

What are the best eco alternatives to kitchen roll or paper towels

Here’s our top eco alternatives to kitchen roll and paper towels:

Reusable Wipes

Cheeky Wipes have a large selection of cloth reusable wipes, however we stock several larger wipes which are perfect kitchen roll replacements.

Cheeky Pet Wipes

Bamboo Reusable Wipes

Perfect for: General cleaning and mucky paws

Price: £12 for 10 bamboo reusable wipes

Size - 20cm x 20cm

Cheeky large bamboo wipes are perfect for general cleaning:

'I have been using this system with my boys for over six years. Love it so much I bought these additional boxes and wipes to use in my yoga studio. We now use cheeky wipes to clean the yoga mats after class my student love them! Also cost effective and great for the environment!'

They're also great for mucky pets before they get into the car or as they come into the house, whether that's paws or bottoms! They form part of our reusable pet wipes pack.

'Great to add this size to our collection. We keep these in the car.'

Large Microfibre Wipes - Kitchen roll replacement

Microfibre Reusable Wipes

Perfect for: Hardcore cleaning & polishing

Price: £7.99 for 10 large microfibre wipes

Size: 20cm x 20cm

Cheeky microfibre wipes are the perfect replacement for kitchen roll when it comes to more hardcore cleaning and polishing. Here at Cheeky HQ, we LOVE them for polishing up glass or stainless steel hobs and they form part of our home cleaning kits.

'Absolutely love these larger wipes. I use them for nearly everything I would have previously used kitchen roll for. They're fabulous!! Absolutely love all my cheeky products!!'

These microfibre cloths also great for window cleaning or keeping in the bathroom for a quick 'swipe' round after your shower to keep it clean and limescale free.

'I love these. They are slightly bigger than baby ones I’ve used and ideal around the house. I have some in each bathroom and the kitchen, and use them all the time for wiping up.'

Cotton Flannel Wipes

Cotton Flannel Wipes

Perfect for: Mucky Hands & Faces

Price: £14.99 for 25 large cotton flannel wipes

Size: 20cm x 20cm

'Love these. Actually use them for my disabled daughter .Much kinder and I've saved a load on baby wipes .She prefers nice hot water cloths too'

Ditch disposable wipes or kitchen roll to remove food items from your kids hands & faces at mealtimes. These cotton washable wipes are plastic free, machine washable and supersoft too. Use with water, or as part of a reusable wipes kit with wipes solution and wipes boxes too.

I’ve bought these to use as an alternative to packets of single use tissues when out and about. They’re a nice absorbency level, soft on delicate noses etc and wash up beautifully clean. Perfect.

Reusable Snack Bags

Reusable Snack Bags

Perfect for: Replacing food wrap in the kitchen

Price: Starting from £5.49 for a mini reusable snack bag

Size - Mini - 13 cm x 16.5 cm - great for carrot sticks, grapes, crackers, mini breadsticks etc.

Size - Small - 16.5cm x 18cm - perfect for sandwiches and larger snacks

'Excellent in the fridge for small bits of cheese etc. Much better than sweaty cling film. Easy to wash and dry. Will definitely be buying more!'

Old tshirts

Old T shirts

Perfect for: Dusting

Price: FREE

Size - whatever size you like

This might seem a bit old fashioned, but if you've got a favourite t-shirt which is past it's best, cut it up for dusting around the house. Old t-shirts are also brilliant for final polishing of shoes, leaving them super shiny.

Newspaper as a kitchen roll replacement


Perfect for: Window Cleaning

Price: FREE if you reuse free paper deliveries

Size - whatever size you like

As the express windows group explains, newspaper is great for cleaning windows alongside some white vinegar and a squeegee. It's also free and easy to chuck into your paper recycling after use!

We really hope you've enjoyed this blog post. Please feel free to leave us a comment, or read other articles which may be of interest:

7 top tips to save money on toilet paper

How bad are wet wipes for the environment?


About the author: Helen Rankin is founder of Cheeky Wipes, the original environmentally sustainable reusable baby wipes kit, founded in 2008. The Cheeky Team pride themselves on helping people make the switch to reusables EASY, with a range of eco friendly products including period pants and cloth sanitary pads. Cheeky Wipes were awarded the Queens Award for Enterprise for their sustainable development goals in 2021.