The yuck factor: 20% of American men never wash their tighty whities

February 28, 2018

Remember how your mother always said to wear clean underwear, in case you had to go to the hospital? Most people either have forgotten, or are intentionally ignoring that sage advice: In fact, nearly 20% of men say they never wash their underwear, compared to just over 10% of women, based on findings of a recent survey of 1,000 adult Americans by Mulberry’s Garment Care.

When the cleaning service broke the numbers down by age group, middle-age people were the least clean, having the highest response of never cleaning. Surprisingly enough, younger people (18-24) had the lowest response rate of not cleaning, and had the highest response rate of between one and two wears.

How often you should wash your jeans has been a popular topic of discussion in the last few years. When comparing men and women, more men said they washed their jeans less frequently than women. Over half of women said they wash their jeans after just one or two wears.

As for general laundry habits, Mulberry’s checkedd to see how many loads of laundry Americans typically do during a week, as well as at what age people started doing their own laundry.

When looking at different age groups, the most common response for each group was between four and five loads a week. On the whole, women were more likely to start doing their own laundry earlier than men. Nearly 10% of older men in particular said they still had someone doing their laundry for them.

Another of the most surprising insights from the survey was on washing sheets. When it came to washing your own bedding, around 7% of men said they only wash their sheets every six months. Over 10% of men said they couldn’t remember the last time they did it.

For guest sheets, things get pretty gross. 17% of men and 7% of women say they never wash their guest sheets after someone stays over.

Finally, the poll did not determine whether those among us who never wash our underwear throw out the dirty pairs and buy new ones—or continue to wear them until they fall apart. We wish we knew.

Research contact: @anniepry

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