Even if you pride yourself on being a clean person, messes are inevitable. From something simple like a spilled drink to a bigger mess like your child throwing their entire dinner on the floor, there’s no way to avoid occasionally needing to clean up spills. The easiest and quickest way? Paper towels. They’re convenient for accidental spills and are disposable, making them perfect for a quick clean-up. However, if you think all paper towels are the same, think again. Some are thicker than others and provide better absorption. There are even different sizes, like select-a-size, so you can choose how many to use depending on the mess. Since choosing a paper towel isn’t actually as simple as it seems, we went through the best brands to determine the best options. Below are our top picks.
The products and services mentioned below were selected independent of sales and advertising. However, Don't Waste Your Money may receive a small commission from the purchase of any products or services through an affiliate link to the retailer's website.
Why We Like It: This well-known brand has been cleaning up messes in homes for years. The two-ply paper towel also comes in select-a-size, allowing you to use less or more, depending on the size of the spill.
Why We Like It: These paper towels are made with pulp sourced from sustainably managed forests and controlled sources. Available in flex-a-sheet sizes, they are said to be up to 75 percent more absorbent than a regular one-ply roll. Your purchase also comes with a guarantee, so you can get your money back if you’re not happy with the product.
Why We Like It: These paper towels feature “thirst pockets” designed to be strong and absorbent and come in select-a-size sheets. They also promise to leave mirrors streak-free.
Tips and Advice
- To avoid being wasteful, it’s important to make sure you choose a paper towel that is not only absorbent but also offers select-a-size. If you’re using a large sheet of paper towel for a small spill, you will go through the roll faster, which will be more expensive in the long run.
- You’ll also want to choose a paper towel designed for your lifestyle. If you use them mostly for quick spills, make sure you are getting one designed for absorbancy. If you do most of your house cleaning with them — like counters, sinks, mirrors, etc. — you’ll most likely want a two-ply paper towel designed for bigger messes.
- Since paper towels are something you’ll most likely always want to have on hand, take into account how many you normally use so you can be sure to stock up. Of course, you can’t predict how many you’ll use on a spill you didn’t plan for. But if you regularly use them while cleaning, you should have a general idea of how quickly you go through them.
- When it comes to the three brands we chose as our top picks, Sparkle appears best for everyday cleaning and brightening your home. Their “thirst pockets” design makes them strong enough to tackle your counters and sinks and promises to leave users with a streak-free mirror. Bounty and Presto! would be great to use on occasional messes and spills, including simple ones, like liquid, and tougher ones, like food.