Several of my friends have talked about Swedish dishcloths. I’m curious! What is a Swedish dishcloth? Why would I want one? What do they cost? And I’m always wondering if there are cheaper alternatives to the expensive options!
What Is a Swedish Dishcloth?
A Swedish dishcloth is like a cross between a sponge and a dishcloth. It’s like a very thin sponge that is the size of a regular dishcloth (around 6″ x 8″). They’re made of a mixture of cellulose and cotton. They’ve been around in Sweden since the 1950s and have been popular in Europe for decades. Recently, they’re gaining popularity in the United States. The most popular and widely available Swedish dishcloth brand in the United States is the Wet-It brand.
Swedish Dishcloth Vs Sponge Cloth
What’s the difference between a Swedish dishcloth and a sponge cloth? Sponge cloth is another name for a Swedish dishcloth. If it isn’t made in Sweden, it’s probably going to be called a sponge cloth instead.
What Are the Advantages of a Swedish Dishcloth?
- Luxurious feel
- Easy to wash and sanitize
- Versatile: good for cleaning, washing dishes, wiping surfaces, cleaning up spills
- Reduce waste from paper towels or sponges
- Expected to last 200-300 washes or about 6-9 months
- Dry quickly so they don’t allow bacteria to grow
How Do You Wash a Swedish Dishcloth?
- Simply rinse and let dry in the kitchen for everyday use.
- Wash on the top rack of the dishwasher.
- Wash in the washing machine. Can also be dried in the dryer, but air drying is recommended for longer life.
- Boil to sanitize.
- Microwave while wet for 1 minute to sanitize.
What Did My Testers Say?
I passed out Swedish dishcloths to 3 moms of young kids and 2 grandmas. Everyone was a little skeptical of the dishcloth at first. In the end, though, everyone was pretty impressed.
- They love how it feels. Overwhelmingly, the response was that everyone really enjoyed the way they felt. There were a lot of comments about how they feel so nice when you wipe things with them. It’s hard to describe until you feel it, but it’s a “luxurious” feeling.
- They weren’t sure how to store the dishcloths. When they dry, they harden and form into odd shapes. If you hang them over your faucet, they will often fall off when they’re completely dry. If they dry in a curved shape, they are very odd-looking and tough to store. The testers didn’t feel this was a deal-breaker, but they were trying to figure out some solutions.
- The other comment was that if you wash dishes with the sponge cloth, you would still need something else for scrubbing stuck-on food (scouring pad or brush). Swedish dishcloths are not good for scrubbing pans with stuck-on food and you will quickly destroy them if you try to use them that way.
How Do You Store a Swedish Dishcloth?
- Hang it over the faucet or sink and embrace the odd shape that it forms.
- Lay it flat on the counter so it dries in a more manageable shape. It won’t dry as fast this way, though.
- Clip it up to dry flat. You could use a magnetic hook on your fridge or use this type of hook inside a cupboard.
- Hang it on a hook (if it has a hole or you punch a hole in it).
Which Is the Best Swedish Dishcloth?
For the purpose of this post, I tested 6 different Swedish dishcloths. I also gave some to several friends to get more opinions. Below are my opinion of the different brands.
Review Wet-It Swedish Dishcloth
- Cute patterns
- Very absorbent
- Thick, nice quality
- Too Expensive (about $6/cloth) See on Amazon
Review Amala Magic Sponge Cloth
- Nice plain colors
- Very absorbent (equal to Wet-It)
- Just as thick as Wet-It
- Good price (about $2/cloth) See on Amazon
Review Skoy Eco-Friendly Cleaning Cloth
- Cute flower design
- Very absorbent (equal to Wet-It)
- A little thinner than Amala
- Good price (about $1.75/cloth) See on Amazon
Review Ikea Plussig Dishcloth
- Only comes in plain green & white
- A bit less absorbent than Wet-It, Amala, & Skoy
- Comes with a handy hole for hanging on a hook
- Excellent price (about $0.25/cloth)
- Unfortunately, may be discontinued (currently on clearance)
Review Scotch-Brite Sponge Cloth
- Only comes in bright blue
- A bit less absorbent than the rest of the brands
- Good price (about $1/cloth) See on Amazon
Review Trader Joe’s Super Amazing Kitchen Cloth
- Comes in a variety of plain colors
- Very large size (double the size of the other brands)
- Different kind of material than the others – feels like felt
- Very absorbent
- Good price (about $1.50/cloth)
- Not really sure what to use this one for. It’s too big to use as a dishcloth but doesn’t seem like a towel. The verdict is still out on whether I find this useful or not.
Bottom Line: Which Brand Is the Best Swedish Dishcloth?
Honestly, other than the Trader Joe’s cloth, they seem remarkably similar. If I wasn’t comparing them side-by-side, I doubt I could have told which was which. If I had to rank them, I’d group them like this:
- Highest quality: Wet-It, Amala, Skoy
- High quality: Ikea and Scotch-Brite
- High quality but unsure of its purpose: Trader Joe’s
Really, you can’t go wrong with any of these options!
Tricky Packaging of Swedish Dishcloths
I was surprised that two of the brands of Swedish dishcloths (Scotch-Brite and Amala) that I tried felt soft in the package.
The rest felt like hard pieces of cardboard. I thought maybe those brands would be soft when they dried. When I opened the packages, I discovered that they are simply packaged in a liquid to keep them wet. They felt wet like baby wipes. When I rinsed them out and let them dry, they felt hard, exactly the same as the other brands.
Don’t be tricked by packaging! Any variety of Swedish dishcloth or “sponge cloth” will be hard when dry. Some are packaged wet to appear softer.
Where to Buy Swedish Dishcloths
Here’s where I found the Swedish dishcloths:
- Wet-It (single): Kroger for $5.99
- Scotch-Brite 2-pack: Kroger on sale for $1.99 (originally $2.49)
- Plussig 4-pack: local Ikea on clearance for $0.99 (originally $1.99)
- Super Amazing Kitchen Cloth 2-pack: Trader Joe’s for $2.99
- Skoy Eco-Friendly Cleaning Cloth 4-pack: Amazon (check current price)
- Amala Magic Sponge Cloth 3-pack: Amazon (check current price)
I was not able to find any Swedish dishcloths at my local Target or Walmart, but it’s possible I missed them. If you have found some there, please let me know in the comments below!
Swedish Dishcloths on Amazon
Amazon is a great place to find a variety of Swedish dishcloths. You can find most of the varieties I tried:
Cheaper Alternatives to Wet-It Swedish Dishcloth
Although the Wet-It brand of Swedish dishcloths is the most well-known, they’re by far the most expensive of the brands I tried. Other than their cute designs, they don’t seem to have anything superior to the other brands.
Here are the approximate prices per cloth:
- Wet-It: $6.00
- Amala: $2.00
- Skoy: $1.75
- Trader Joe’s: $1.50
- Scotch Brite: $1.00
- Ikea Plussig: $0.25
There are a number of other brands of sponge cloths available around $1-2 per cloth. Paying $6/cloth is unnecessary when there are so many other good-quality cheaper alternatives to Wet-It Swedish dishcloths. If you want something nearly identical to Wet-It, check out the Amala Sponge Cloths.
More Cheaper Alternatives
If you’d like to read more in my “cheaper alternatives” series, check out these posts in the series:
- Review: Best Generic Coffee (Whole Bean)
- Cheaper Alternatives to Ray-Ban Sunglasses
- Swedish Dishcloth Review
- Cheaper Alternatives to Sperry Top-sider Boat Shoes
- Cheaper Alternatives to Thirty-One Utility Totes
- Cheaper Alternatives to ENO Hammocks
- Cheaper Alternatives to Young Living & Doterra Essential Oils
- Cheaper Alternatives to Lululemon on Amazon
- Cheaper Alternatives to Norwex
- Tieks & Rothy’s Alternatives: Cheaper Ballet Flats