Handkerchief vs tissue – Using handkerchiefs instead of tissues is Hygiene?

If you look hard over the past decade or so, you will notice that handkerchiefs were one of the most charming companions of a majority of people. But according to the new norms, they are considered incredibly old-fashioned and a hassle to carry around. Furthermore, modern disposable tissues have been consistently gaining their place over handkerchiefs for a while now. Therefore, the debate over handkerchief vs tissue has become more common than you can possibly think.

Are you a handkerchief person or do you prefer tissues?

Is a handkerchief more sanitary than tissues?

Which one should be preferred when you’re sick?

What option is more environmentally responsible?

After carefully listening to all these questions, we feel like such an important decision should not be taken without proper consideration of every potential point.

handkerchief vs tissue

Handkerchiefs or tissues, which one is more hygienic?

Don’t you think we have been asking the wrong question all this while? Because as far as these concerns go, the cleanliness of a place or a thing depends more upon how you decide to act in any given situation than anything else. Both tissues and handkerchiefs can be potentially unhygienic so it is quite clear that when talking about hygiene, the true question is “which habits are more healthy?”

Handkerchief vs tissue

- With Hankies

Hankies are considered less hygienic because as you blow your nose in a handkerchief, you’re supplying a fresh stream of snot to any germs already present there. If those germs are bacteria then the extra moisture from the snot can help them grow but if they’re viruses, the protein present in the snot might help in protecting them from completely drying out.

Another difficulty with handkerchiefs is when you use them, any surviving germs left from the previous use can be transferred right back to your hands, which will further contaminate anything you touch next. Although, you can restrict this spread by washing your hands properly every single time you blow your nose, but we all can agree that this isn’t always practical.


- With Tissues

With tissues, you can use a fresh one every time you need it. When you blow your nose in a tissue or a wipe off, it traps the germs immediately thus significantly reducing the risk of spreading any virus or bacteria around you. 

The downside of using tissues is that they are adequately sanitary as long as you throw them away immediately after usage into the dustbin (without re-using) and wash your hands thoroughly. Now discarding tissues immediately is a nice and lovely thought but how often do you think that actually happens? Everyone is busy and bins are not always available.

Tissue paper
  • You can always carry more than one handkerchief at a time. Not only that, they can be easily folded after use, presenting a fresh dry area every time. 
  • Since the hanky is folded within itself before going back into the pocket, the molecules remain trapped inside. When one handkerchief is all used up, you can pull out another one and the used hankies will be washed after you get home.
  • At the same time, tissues can prove to be costly when viewed in the long run which is not an affordable expense for many people.

Now, what do you think? We are here to provide you with information but, in the end, you have to decide which case sounds more sanitary to you.

We need to care about our environment

After all this time and catastrophes, do you think it’s finally the time for us to think about our environment over your convenience?

The substantial question here is, should we stick to using a lot more tissues each time we experience cold or just use a handkerchief that can be washed and used multiple times over?

From an environmental point of opinion, tissues are definitely not the best of the options as they are made from paper which comes from the trees. Most environmentalists legitimately argue that trees should not be chopped down unnecessarily.

tissues made from tree

According to an article presented in Purdue, it is essential to emphasize that trees are an important part of nature and hugely responsible for our health. They also help in decreasing the occurrence of respiratory diseases in the human population.

So, the good solution to avert and manage this waste of tissues situation is to adopt other available options, in this case, which is a handkerchief.

Which Option is Better for Hay Fever?

If you want to use a hanky for hay fever, then please go right ahead, as the nasal secretions aren’t filled with a virus. However, it is still recommended to swap your handkerchief regularly if you are suffering from a runny nose.

When it comes to handkerchiefs and tissues, it entirely hangs on who is using the item and how. To tell you the truth, this debate over handkerchief vs tissue usually concludes in both ways being sanitary- which makes not anyone better than the other.

Nevertheless, if you are not using them appropriately, they both can be pretty bad. The hanky is not dirty and non-hygienic and neither is the tissue. But if you’ve never used a hanky before, then it’s time to give it a chance. We know you’ll be pleasantly surprised.

Final Words

Now you understand the debate. The hanky has its positive aspects and so does the tissue, however, both have their negative factors that need to be considered as well. No matter what you choose, simply be certain that in the end, you are healthy and germ-free!

1 thought on “Handkerchief vs tissue – Using handkerchiefs instead of tissues is Hygiene?”

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