Uses for Bandanas

May 14, 2012

Uses for BandanasPack a few with your camping gear, bandanas can be used for napkins. They also come in handy to wash dishes or to wrap a cut or a sprain (temporarily).


By Karen H. from Pawtucket, RI

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June 28, 2007

Any suggestions for finding bandanas that are soft? My husband uses the old fashioned bandanas for hankies, and his are looking horrible and need to be replaced? I look wherever I go for 100% Cotton bandanas, ones with a close weave, and what I feel will wash up nicely and become soft. Most of the bandanas I have purchased lately have been stiff after repeated washings (some up to a couple of dozen times). I have tried fabric softener, I have soaked them in vinegar, etc. I am at my wit's end....(I prefer not to buy used hankies). Anyone have any suggestions? Thanks!

Shirley from West Michigan


June 28, 20071 found this helpful

Even though something is 100% cotton it can still be rough. For a softer "hanky" you may want to consider buying a higher grade one like from a department store - sears, jc pennys, or a suit store. Or you can make them your self.


Buy a nice egyptian cotton with a high thread count flat bed sheet - a twin size will work. and cut and hem to the correct size. or for a cheaper version use one of your own older bed sheets that has softened up and cut it down. Good luck

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Bronze Post Medal for All Time! 213 Posts
June 28, 20070 found this helpful

Sounds like you have tried ALL the tricks! Either the manufacturers are using an extremely course type of cotton (& I don't think that's even possible) or they are adding some kind of nasty sizing to these... OR, they are marked WRONG & are really not 100% cotton, but are polyester, or a poly blend instead!


Here are some good sites online for buying SOFT BANDANAS:

* these look like high quality bandanas: (Affiliate Link)
Look at the bottom for the page gore more options.

* I bet these bandanas are really soft, as they are sold for cancer patients who have lost their hair:

* these look like cheep, lower quality bandanas:

---> Before you purchase them, ask if you can return them if they don't wash up soft. This way, maybe they'll be honest & let you know the brands that are softest.

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June 28, 20070 found this helpful

Bandanas you say? Egyptian and USA Supima cotton are the best cottons, but they make costly bandanas. Fendi bandanas are $14 a pop.

Try this link:


At least the one on top is 100% cotton, and they seem to know something about bandanas. I would chat them up. Ask if they have sizing on theirs--you don't want it.

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By Jannnie (Guest Post)
June 29, 20070 found this helpful

I've always gotten mine at WalMart for my dog and they are very soft..good luck...

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By (Guest Post)
June 29, 20070 found this helpful

how about garage sales or flea mkts..

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June 29, 20071 found this helpful

I got some lovely bandanas from our local dollar store. My Girls used them as head scarves. However, if yours are too stiff, you might try a very old fashioned laundry method - boiling them. Yes, boiling them.


In a pot on the stove, heat up a pot of water to boiling, carefully add the bandands, let boil for say 10 mins, turn off the stove element. Leave for an hour until the pot is safe to remove from the stove, then remove the bandanas from the pot, launder as normal. The boiling should have softened the fabric significantly.

NOTE: Boiling is NOT for synthetic fabrics of any kind. COTTON ONLY. This method is used for whitening whites, sanitizing and stain removal for cotton diapers/white clothing.

Good Luck.

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By tupelogranmom (Guest Post)
June 30, 20070 found this helpful

My husband also use the large bandana style hankie I always got them at Walmart in the mens dept marked hankerchiefs

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June 30, 20070 found this helpful

I wonder if organic cotton would be softer. There are lots of websites.

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July 1, 20070 found this helpful

I just checked the price of mens handkerchiefs on google and I am amazed at how expensive they are. In Ireland you can buy a 3 pack of 100% cotton handkerchiefs for about 5Euros, thats about $7. (Some are even monogrammed).


So if you know anyone travelling to Ireland or the UK this summer be sure to ask them to buy you some, you can buy them in any department store.

I remember as a child there was always the 'hankie pot' in our house for boiling all the hankies, everyone used them.

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By Judy Walker (Guest Post)
July 1, 20071 found this helpful

We find them at WalMart in the scarf/hat department. They are $ .98 and are 18"x18". Never see white, mostly country colors.

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July 1, 20070 found this helpful

I'm sitting here laughing because I almost answered "just leave them out on the counter for a couple of days and they will soften"...until I re-read your question and realized you wanted soft bandanas and not soft bananas...I've always known I was dyslexic!

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By Phyllis (Guest Post)
July 1, 20070 found this helpful

I have found a very large selection of these bandanas at Hobby Lobby stores. Or check out

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February 28, 2017

Using a cloth handkerchief can be a gentler option than paper tissues, especially if you have a runny nose from a cold. This is a page about use handkerchieves instead of tissues.

woman blowing her nose

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February 23, 2017

You can buy inexpensive bandannas to use as colorful napkins. This is a page about using bandannas for cloth napkins.

A classic red bandanna with a black and white pattern, folded.

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February 14, 2017

Handkerchiefs make great washcloths because they air dry quickly, so you don't have to worry about a stinky washcloths. This page is about using bandannas instead of washcloths.

A red bandanna on a white background.

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