Cleaning white towels

I had one guest who ruined towels with face mask and moisturizer with fake tan. I think the orange stains you have are probably fake tan. To answer your other question, no the vast majority of my guests don’t stain towels.

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Hi Ellen, thanks for your input. May I ask you one thing as you seem to be a very experienced host. I want my future guests to pay for unsalvageable towels. I don’t want to put this in the house rule in my listing as too many rules may deter guests from booking. I plan to put a little card and provide some brown towels for removing makeup, just as other hosts suggested in another thread. My question is can I request money from guest even though it is not mentioned in my listing? Will Airbnb side with me as long as I provide photos of those unsalvegeable towels? Thanks in advance!

I have never asked for money to replace towels. I believe that other posters on this board have.

Thanks Ellen. I don’t want to ask for money if only 1 or 2 towel get stained. But as you can see, there is some guests who are not considerate at all. I hope the little card can stop them from ruining the white towels and if they still decide to stain most of my towels, I want to charge a fee for their disrespectful behaviour.

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How many days and how many guests? In my hotel stays over the last few years towel usage has changed a lot from in the 1980’s. Now we are provided with a hand towel and bath towel per person and expected to hang it up to dry each day. This looks disgusting. There are signs posted in most hotels about being environmentally friendly, maybe that bpneds to be posted at your place. I’m having a hard time re the makeup as it’s something that’s not used that much here in Canada. My parents had friend who wore the heavy pancake makeup but that was 30 years go.

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Hi Louise, 7 days 5 guests, they requested new towels on day 4 or 5. These in the bath are just used for 3 days. The previous batch were worse than this (used for 4 days). I provide one bath towel, one hand towel and one face towel for each guest.

That’s appalling! I don’t provide towels as my guests are coming by car from their homes about two hours away. If I was going to do this for more than another year I might change, but I couldn’t afford to invest a few hundred dollars in towels. I had a lot, but gave them to a coworker whose home burnt down along with excess bedding. So far guest’s have been ok re this. There is also the issue of them taking towels to the beach which I didn’t want to deal with.

Should I mention these towels in the review? It is unpleasant for me to deal with, but I’m not sure if it is worth mentioning. I don’t want to be critical if most people see it as a small matter.

Does anybody here use the bicarbonate of soda + vinegar washing system for towels? I have for years, it’s brilliant (and cheap). Towels stay fresh (no mould, bright colours/bright white) and last longer. All you do is: (1) wash once on hot set with bicarbonate of soda, don’t rinse; (2) a second hot wash, now full cycle, with vinegar (you can add essential oils in this last wash, but it’s not needed - towels will be extremely fresh).

P.S. I’m new to this forum and haven’t even introduced myself properly; I’m also new to hosting, so I’m quite embarrassed to post this - BUT I can’t resist when it’s about laundry :blush: I’ve raised two children and always had many many family guests, and these are my only ‘credentials’ re laundry LOL


It’s not normal but it’s not unusual either. Like you, I leave three bath towels, three hand towels and four facecloths - for two guests (our max). I always tell guests to let me know if they need more but it’s very rare that they do. I also leave two beach towels. If we have guests wit a dog, we supply a dog towel also.

It’s very rare that I’ve had towels that have been stained and rendered unusable. If it happens, they are just used in our own home.

I wouldn’t because a) it would probably take up a lot of time and time is money and b) it’s going to happen - I see a few minor damages such as ruined towels as being part of the cost of doing business.

I think that as far as claiming from Airbnb is concerned hosts should ask themselves ‘would I claim from my insurance company for this?’ If the answer is no, then it’s going to be a hard slog to claim from Airbnb.

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I’ve only had one couple who left towels with some brownish stains similar to this. They had been camping and I guessed that when they showered they missed some spots and then when they dried off the dirt went on the towel. Or maybe they used them to wipe down some of their gear. I’ve also had some very pale blood stains. In both cases I just treated with a stain spray (Spray and Wash brand) and washed with detergent and OxyClean. They were fine.

Another option is just add a dollar or two to the price of your rental and buy new towels if you get ruined towels. I don’t know what options you have there. Here I can get nice towels for about $7 each at Costco. Amazon also has towel sets.

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I am using a steam cleaner on stains. First i put oxy or Vanish, then treat it with a steam. Always works

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