No More Paper Napkins!


When I originally jotted down my title for this frugal living tip post, I labeled it “Throw Away Your Paper Towels!” But since then, I realize that paper towels can still be quite useful around the house so I’ll approach that title and tip for another day. Today, I wanted to share with you a frugal living tip I’ve been doing in in the kitchen for a while now. Our family no longer uses paper napkins or paper towels to wipe our hands or our face at mealtime. No, we don’t eat like savages and use our hands then wipe on our clothes, those days are long gone. 🙂

cloth napkins

We now use cloth napkins.

Cloth Napkins Save Money and Cost Less

Using cloth napkins routinely at mealtimes has been something my family has been doing over the last year. I made the decision one day when I went to pick up a package of paper napkins at the grocery store, and thought I wasn’t willing to spend almost $3 for a package of napkins that would start to fall apart after the first wipe. Call me cheap, I call it frugal.

So one day, while I was at the thrift store, I started looking carefully in the linen section for cloth napkins. Since then, I’ve purchased a variety of cloth napkins for less than the cost of a few packages of paper napkins for our family. They usually run between $0.25 each to 4 to 8 for $2.00 and on half off days at the thrift store, even less. Of course, I could be even more frugal and make my own but I’m no sewing queen, not yet anyway.

Cloth Napkins Are Environmentally Friendly

When you start to live a more frugal family lifestyle, you start to analyze every penny you spend a little more and buying paper napkins or even paper towels for that matter was adding up our grocery bill. Every Tuesday, on garbage day, our trash can would be filled to the brim with unnecessary garbage and paper products. We now pay more attention to what can be composted, recycled and reused. Cloth napkins are not just a one-time-use them and toss item.  Cloth napkins cover way beyond one spill and can even last beyond one meal (if it’s not a meal like spaghetti).  Even used to the maximum capacity, cloth napkins end up in the hamper, not trash, which means…cloth napkins produce less trash!

Keep in mind that you don’t always have to buy matching cloth napkins unless you’re throwing a dinner party. We may have a matching set for a holiday dinner but I myself, love the different patterns.

Cloth Napkins For The Family Kitchen

Making the switch to cloth napkins may be a little challenging but here are some great reasons to start:

  1. Cloth Napkins Saves Money and Cost Less: Search and shop for cloth napkins at your local thrift store, not everything you find there is dirty and stained. Sometimes, people get rid of brand new ones. Look on Ebay or you can sometimes find good deals at Walmart or Target.
  2. Reusable and Washable: Save money and time by washing with other dirty towels and kitchen rags too. Meaning you don’t have to add another pile of laundry. Depending on how dirty they get, wash once a week.
  3. Cloth Napkins Last Longer: Again, Cloth napkins cover way beyond one spill and can even last beyond one meal (if it’s not a meal like spaghetti).
  4. Cloth Napkins Produce Less Trash: Cloth napkins can be used and washed and reused until they shrivel apart, and even then they can become “heavy duty” cleaning rags.  Less trash = better for the environment.

Besides, cloth napkins are nicer.  Every meal is a little bit fancy with a cloth napkin! 🙂

Does your family use cloth napkins? Are you inspired to switch?

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About Noel

Noel is a CEO and Mother of 4 who can be found blogging from her home office, who's passionate about family, nutrition, fitness and supporting others reach their health & fitness goals. Noel uses her blog to share about simple, healthy recipes, nutrition tips, walking, workouts and a little sprinkle of life! She created Noel's Kitchen Tips teaching families how to make budget friendly meal and healthy recipes. She's blessed to have the opportunity to be able to teach busy moms and families how to use food and cooking as a means of bringing family mealtimes back to the table and stay healthy.


  1. This is a great money saving and environmentally friendly tip!! anne

  2. Very creative. Environment friendly. Thanks for sharing.

  3. I like this, I should find some decent ones to buy!
    You should share some of your favorite ones as suggestions for others.

  4. I always scour the thrift stores before I go out and spend the money at the regular stores. Sometimes, you can always find some cute ones. The only downside is you don’t always find the right amount for your place setting. But you can always mix and match.

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