Are Paper Towels Lint-free? {7 Facts You Should Know}

paper towels are lint-free

Few things are as annoying as cleaning a surface with a paper towel, only for the paper towel to leave behind heaps of lint. Amid all that left-over fluff and possible scratches, the lint material could have inflicted on the material surface, you may have wondered, “aren’t paper towels lint-free?”

Not all paper towels are lint-free. Traditional paper towels that are softer and less interwoven contain more lint. That said, there are specialized paper towels that have zero-to-minimal lint composition. The latter category is relatively denser and boasts superior absorbency. 

With the bulk of paper towels and fabric in today’s market being touted as lint-free, wouldn’t it be nice to learn a thing or two about genuine lint-free paper towels? Yes, and let’s go!

What makes paper towels lint-free?

Fundamentally, lint is fine particles that loosely detach from paper a material (in this situation, paper towel) when rubbed against another surface. 

Such propensity to detachment is typically attributed to the loose interwovenness of traditional paper towels. This said category of paper towels is less dense and notably softer.  

Paper towels with zero lint composition (or reduced lint percentage) tend to be less soft and denser. Such relatively enhanced density can be traced to their superior interwovenness. 

That said, some renowned manufacturers of lint-free paper towels like Scott paper towels deploy unique technology like the UCTAD technology in producing their towels. Thanks to such engineering, their paper towels have zero binders on the base sheet, coming untreated. 

This way, such paper towels have zero or remarkably reduced lint content, meaning less streaking when used in cleaning surfaces. 

Do lint-free paper towels absorb well?

Commonly, I see people discounting the absorbency of lint-free towels. Contrastingly, lint-free paper towels even absorb better than traditional paper towels.

Thanks to their design, lint-free paper towels have improved retention capacity. The denser a lint-free paper towel, the better it tends to absorb. 

Are lint-free paper towels heavier?

Yes, lint-free paper towels weigh more than your regular paper towels. This makes sense when you consider that – unlike your conventional paper towels more optimized to sanitary deployments – lint-free towels are modified for rougher and more heavy-duty wiping applications. 

This makes lint-free paper towels more suitable alternatives to fabric towels. With this established, it is worth noting that not all lint-free paper towels are significantly heavy.

Take, Scott paper towels, for example. They have a reputation for minimal lint composition. But they are yet lightweight. 

The typical Scott Blue paper towel comes at an incredible lightweight rating of 0.160 ounces. Similarly, another worthy contender in the lint-free category of paper towels, Wypall, comes at 0.480 ounces. 

Can you recycle lint-free paper towels?

From our experience, the bulk of paper towels that we have used and can attest to have minimal lint composition are not recyclable. 

Our best advice would be to maximize these towels when you use them. Unlike fabric towels, it is not generally recommended to wash and reuse paper towels.

Are lint-free paper towels expensive?

Fine wine comes at a price, doesn’t it? Lint-free paper towels – given their established superiority in quality – attract a higher price. 

Understandably there is no definitive price for lint-free paper towels. Parameters like the size, number of rolls contained in a packet, and overall quality affect the price.

While a regular paper towel can be procured for a ready $5, you could need to budget around $20-$45 to get a quality lint-free paper towel.

Where can you use lint-free paper towels?

As said, lint-free materials, considering their enhanced density, strength, and absorbency – are better accustomed to heavy-duty wiping.

This includes being used in workshops and garages for removing streaks from your grimy windows and eliminating spills. Of course, you can still use lint-free paper towels for kitchen duties, specifically for functions like cleaning your messed-up grills.

If you are confident of the lint-free quality of your paper towel, you can use them for cleaning reflective surfaces like mirrors, lens, windshields, and electrical equipment. If it is a premium lint-free paper towel, it won’t leave streaks behind.  

Nonetheless, let us chip in some caution here. In today’s market, not every paper towel strutting a lint-free label is actually rid of lint. 

Therefore, it is wise not to immediately use any acclaimed lint-free paper towel to clean delicate surfaces like electronic screens or lenses. 

Use it for a while on cleaning less risky surfaces and evaluate the performance. If indeed it leaves no scratches and lint behind, then you can safely use it for glass surfaces or screens.

Best Lint-free paper towels in the market today

The truth is, it is not the easiest of tasks finding a genuinely lint-free paper towel. Practically no brand admits to their paper towels being laden with lint – until you use it.

We saved you all the investigative work by diligently researching the market. From our firsthand experience, we handpicked the best lint-free paper towels we could come across. 

WYPALL Lint-Free Paper Towels

Let us start by saying this Wypall is different from your conventional paper towel. It is easier to classify them as reinforced cloth.

Nevertheless, these paper towels have admirable absorbency and can be readily deployed at lightweight to heavy-duty applications. 

This Wypall paper towel comes with no binders. Yet you would be bitterly inaccurate to mistake such absence of adhesives for lesser consistency in these towels.

The awesome interwovenness of this paper towel is better appreciated when you consider its lightweight design. Paper towels coming at the meager weight range of 0.480 ounces (like the Wypall does) are not this consistent. 

A lot of the excellence of this paper towel can be traced to its unique HydroKnit structural build. This enhances its capacity to absorb fluids while sustaining its reinforced design. Overall, this is a lint-free paper towel you can trust to stand the test of time.

What we like about it

Remarkable lightweight design 

It absorbs excellently

It is compatible with abrasive materials

What can be improved

The width makes it a bit challenging to use

Scott – Blue Lint Free Paper Towels

This is one paper towel eager to be used roughly. Yes, you read that right. The Scott-Blue comes top of the market when looking for lint-free paper towels optimized for heavy-duty wiping.

Scott primarily targets this paper towel at the oily garage and workshop guys. Specifically, these Scott-Blue paper towels excel at automotive maintenance duties like refilling fluid and replacing oils.

Thanks to a substantial inner depth of 4.5 inches, this guy readily soaks all that messy grease, oil, and paint. We were thrilled at well it worked even when wet. Using it in workshops is easy as this paper towel is structured to fit into your everyday towel holder. 

Having hit heavily on the suitability of the Scott-Blue for garage functionalities, you may be thinking using this paper towel in the kitchen is a no-no. The good news is that such an assumption is incorrect.

If you have got stubborn stains and grease in your kitchen, the Scott-Blue paper towel is ready to get the cleaning job done. Unlike some paper towels we tested out, the Scott-Blue’s efficiency doesn’t dramatically wane with sustained usage.

What we like about it

Fantastically suited to mechanical cleaning duties

It absorbs really well

What could be improved

The thinness of its build is a bit prone to ripping.