6 Reasons You Need Cloth Napkins

updated May 5, 2022
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Table Tip: Fold Your Napkins Right Out of the Dryer!

(Image credit: Faith Durand)

Even if you think they’re fussy or too much work, we’ve got some good reasons why you should own (and use!) cloth napkins.

1. They hold up way better than paper napkins.

No one wants to use paper napkins that are going to disintegrate after a few quick hand wipes during a messy meal. A cloth napkin can stand up to the messiest fingers — every single time.

2. They’re less wasteful than paper towels.

If your response to the gripe above is to just use paper towels, please stop right there. Paper towels (and paper napkins) are super wasteful. We’re fine with a paper towel or napkin here and there (it’s not like we think you need a cloth square just to eat pizza on a Friday night!), but reusable napkins are best when you’re serving dinner for a crowd.

3. They’re decorative!

If you’ve taken even one minute to think about your place settings, you should absolutely be using cloth napkins. A table just looks more finished with a perfectly folded napkin. Plus, you can add some extra beauty and personality with napkin rings. You can’t exactly use napkin rings with paper napkins, can you?

4. You can use them for other things.

Those rolls aren’t going to keep themselves warm. Use them to line serving baskets or tie them around a wine bottle to catch drips. They’re infinitely useful.

5. They’re inexpensive and you’ll have them forever.

Cloth napkins are one of the cheapest and easiest ways to add color and class to your table. They’re typically cheaper than a salad plate or ornate glassware, and you can even DIY them if you want. Once you have a set or two in your home, as long as you don’t let stains sit, you’ll be able to use them for plenty of dinner parties to come.

Buy or Make Some

6. You don’t even have to clean them that often.

It’s true! Even if a cloth napkin has been gently used, you might not have to bother putting in the wash.

Do you own cloth napkins? How often do you use them?