Presto Paper Towels

In addition to sponges and multipurpose sprays, paper towels are a necessary household product to always have on hand. But with an entire aisle of paper towels at the grocery store, which brand offers the best cleaning ability for the money?

After researching and testing the best paper towels, our favorite paper towel is the Bounty Select-A-Size (available at Amazon) because of its incredible strength and stellar absorbency.

For a great value, the Kirkland Signature Create-A-Size Paper Towels (available at Costco) are our pick. You get more sheets at an affordable price and it offers comparable performance to Bounty’s paper towels.

But we tested plenty of great paper towels, here are the best paper towels for your cleaning kits and kitchen counters.

Other Paper Towels We Tested

How We Test Paper Towels

The Tester

I’m Samantha Mangino, a staff writer for the Home team at Reviewed. I write about cleaning, appliances, and home décor. I’ve tested my fair share of household goods here at Reviewed including steam irons, trash bags, and cleaning supplies.

I grew up in a household where we had our brand loyalty when it came to cleaning products; now I’m on the hunt for the best products so you’re investing in products that really get the job done.

The Tests

We put each towel through its paces in practical, around-the-house tests that would best reflect the average consumer’s use of the product.

Our first trial was a simple wiping test. We put a teaspoon of tomato sauce on a common kitchen countertop and tried to clean the mess with one swipe of a paper towel. We documented any smudging or smearing, while also taking into account each product’s ease of use.

Next, we swiped each dry towel over a dusty surface to find their cleaning ability without the aid of water or spray.

We also tested the strength of each paper towel in both a dry and wet state. Using just one piece of paper, we attempted to pull it in half while dry and while wet. Next, we rubbed each wet paper towel against the rough surface of a floor rug to test the durability of each towel.

Additionally, we wet each paper towel and then let it air dry to test its ability to be used more than once.

We also paid attention to the smaller, subjective details that make certain paper towels more enjoyable to use than others. This includes ease of tearing (because everyone loathes that piece at the bottom after a jagged tear), texture, softness, and overall ease of use.

What You Should Know About Paper Towels


The first factor to consider is the sticker price, which incorporates the actual dollar amount but also the question of reusability. In our testing, we wet the towels, let them dry, and then used them again. This helped us determine which towels were strong and absorbent and the most durable.

Plus, most paper towels allow for the select-a-size option that can give you bigger and smaller sheets depending on the job you’re tackling. Allowing that flexibility means you’ll use only what you need to prolong the life of your paper towel roll.

Reusable paper towels may be best for your wallet. Packages usually are less than $20 for a pack of 2. Each reusable paper towel is the equivalent of 17 rolls. Meaning for the price of less than one pack of paper towels, reusable paper towels offer the value of six packages.

However, with reusable paper towels there are some downsides including lingering stains. Many turn to paper towels for their single-use nature, so the thought of reusing a paper towel might be a turn-off for sanitary purposes.

Thickness and Absorbency

We also consider the thickness of each paper towel because that often impacts the absorbency.

To test the absorbency, we soaked each paper towel in water and measured how much water weight it could hold to get a sense of each towel’s full potential.

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