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Microfiber vs. Cotton Cleaning Cloths: Which Is More Effective?

Every day, you pick up 30-50% of the microorganisms living on every surface you touch, which makes the cleanliness of the environments and surfaces around you as important as good personal hygiene. It’s the job of your professional cleaning company to identify the areas most likely to be harbouring infectious bacteria and implement the necessary steps to remove harmful microorganisms.

When confronting germs, being equipped with the right tools is important. What’s better to have in your dirt-fighting arsenal: cotton or microfiber?

How Effective Is Cotton?

Cotton Fiber commercial cleaningCotton is one of the most popular, widely used cleaning fibers. It’s a readily available, cost-effective material, and its high absorbency makes it ideal for picking up liquids.

But when battling germs, absorbency does not mean effectiveness. Although it’s excellent for holding onto moisture, it’s bad at trapping soils, which is crucial when it comes to infection prevention. Cotton also has a bad habit of binding to quat-based disinfectants, one-step cleaners effective against a broad range of microorganisms, further reducing its effectiveness when used with those cleaners.

How Effective Is Microfiber?

Cotton Fiber commercial cleaningThe primary stumbling block with microfiber is its cost, which is higher than cotton. Improperly cleaned microfiber (it must be washed in warm water to effectively release trapped particles) is also more prone to scratching delicate surfaces.

In the struggle against germs, however, microfiber is the winner. It’s more effective at lifting and containing soils, thereby preventing the spread of infectious microorganisms. The synthetic fibers have built-in grooves that pick up and hold onto particles, and microfiber does not bind to quat-based cleaners.

Ensure that the cleaning company you choose to work with takes the effort to do it right by making microfiber cleaning cloths a central part of their germ-fighting arsenal.


Sunshine is committed to upholding superior standards of service and providing safe, thorough cleaning services to its customers throughout Southern Ontario. Contact us for a quote or to submit a request for proposal.

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*Images courtesy of FSW.

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