Apparently People Wash Their Underwear In Hotel Kettles

Travelling is hard. Packing is hard. Packing enough is more hard. More hard? Harder. Packing enough to wear is difficult. Doing laundry while staying in a hotel is difficult too, but experts say that you should stop putting your underwear in the hotel kettle to wash them.

“Wait, people are actually doing that?” Well, yeah, and apparently there have been enough people doing it that experts actually have had to warn against it, trying to get people to stop.

This story based in New Zealand, but I know I’ll never have another cup of hotel room tea or coffee next time I’m staying in a hotel anywhere.

So, a lot of hotel rooms come with an electric kettle (at least a coffee maker) that you use to heat up water for tea, coffee, whatever you may need hot water for (or just use the coffee maker). Apparently some people who don’t keep enough clean underwear in their lives have been using that kettle/coffee maker as a washing machine. They’ve been filling it with water, dropping their dirty underwear in the water, and heating up that water. Senior Lecturer Dr. Heather Hendrickson (Molecular Biosciences, Institute of Natural and Mathematical Sciences at Massey University in Aukland) says, simply, that boiling your underwear in a hotel kettle is “super super super super gross.” If 4 “supers” weren’t enough for you, we don’t know what will be.

In a nutshell, not only is it gross for literally everyone who has ever used a coffee pot at a hotel, but boiling water isn’t enough to kill some strains of bacteria and microorganisms. Dr. Hendrickson says that some certain bacteria need temperatures above around 250 degrees plus some pressure to kill off, like botulism, for example. Not that that’s in our undergarments, but still, it could be.

Suddenly prices at Starbucks don’t sound so bad, eh?

The best way to use the kettle to clean your underwear is to pack more underwear in the first place, but if you find yourself in a pickle, pour the hot water into the sink and wash them that way. Sheesh.


More from Mark S. Allen In The Morning

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