summertime fix.

July 17, 2019
summertime fix with mightynest | reading my tea leaves

This post is sponsored by MightyNest, a company committed to sourcing sustainable products for healthy homes. 

It’s summertime and we’re spending the month at my mom and dad’s house, which means two things: more stone fruit than you can possibly imagine and the attending drips and dribbles left behind by two free-ranging grandchildren.

When I first partnered with MightyNest a few years ago, my parents dutifully signed up for their MightyFix membership. Spending a bit of extra time at their house this summer, I’ve had the chance to see the lasting effects of their MightyFix subscription three years later and I’m very pleased to announce that MightyNest is back again, offering Reading My Tea Leaves readers a special introductory rate to their MightyFix membership.

summertime fix with mightynest | reading my tea leaves

For folks unfamiliar, MightyNest is a company committed to helping households on the path toward living more sustainably at home. Their carefully chosen selection of eco-friendly goods takes the guesswork out of finding sustainable solutions and household essentials. Their MightyFix subscription is a simple service that introduces members to a new tried and tested product every month. 

summertime fix with mightynest | reading my tea leaves

The MightyFix concept is simple enough: bit by bit customers are introduced to products that help shift old habits and replace solutions that aren’t particularly sustainable or healthy, with ones that are.  At my parents’ house, instead of dryer sheets or fabric softener, there are fluffy wool dryer balls in the laundry basket. In the kitchen drawer, there are mesh produce bags to bring to the store instead of using plastic ones. Along refrigerator shelves, there are glass containers filled with leftovers instead of anything plastic.

summertime fix with mightynest | reading my tea leaves

At my urging, my parents stopped using paper towels a few years ago, but my dad was apprehensive about the shift. (I can attest to the fact that there was grumbling.) Like lots of folks of his (or any) generation, he was used to his own system: paper towels go under the kitchen sink,  get easily used for all manner of messes, and get thrown directly into the garbage without another thought once soiled. 

summertime fix with mightynest | reading my tea leaves

Today, my parents keep a small basket of cotton cloths under the sink, including a stack of Tidy Cloths sent through the MightyFix. They’re a simple organic cotton dishcloth with zig-zagging stitching, meant to replace paper towels. The uniform size, the added texture that allows for better gripping and easier cleanup, the loop for easy hanging, and the cheery colors that happen to match my mom’s collection of antique turquoise glass, all add up to making the transition away from paper towels a whole lot easier.

summertime fix with mightynest | reading my tea leaves

For folks working on shifting their daily habits and striving toward sustainability, I love the spirit of can-do generosity and experimentation inherent in the MightyFix. It feels like making sustainable swaps under the gentle guidance of an encouraging and trusted friend. You can even gift a few months of the service to someone you love who might need a nudge in the right direction. For anyone feeling apprehensive making a switch, each monthly product arrives with a friendly note detailing how to integrate the item into your daily life. 

summertime fix with mightynest | reading my tea leaves

For anyone interested in the MightyFix, here are a few things to know:

+ A subscription to MightyFix costs $11/month. Each month, subscribers receive an item valuing at least $11, and often more. 

+ MightyFix subscribers get access to exclusive discounts—up to 35% off—on hundreds of items, making it easy to re-up on Fixes they love (or try something new).

+ Shipping on your MightyFix is always free, and if you live in the contiguous 48 states and want to add anything else to your order, those things ship for free, too.*

+ You can be a member for as long or short as makes sense for you; there’s no mandatory subscription period.

+ MightyNest is offering RMTL readers a special $3 rate for the first month of their MightyFix subscription. 

+ Use the code RMTLTIDY you can get your first fix—this set of organic cotton dishcloths—for just $3. (If you’re a vegan household and prefer for all future fixes to also be vegan, use the code RMTLVEGAN.) 

mighty nest tidy cloths | reading my tea leaves

*MightyFix is currently available to US, APO/FPO, US Territories with free shipping. Shipping to Canada is $3/month. Shipping to Australia is $4/month. Free shipping for Add-Ons is available to the contiguous US 48 states only.

This post was sponsored by MightyNest. All opinions are my own. Thanks for supporting the brands that support Reading My Tea Leaves.

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  • Reply Ashley P July 17, 2019 at 8:59 am

    Just a comment to say that I loved my Mighty Nest subscription! They also have a personal care subscription called Mighty Body that sends a monthly product with safe ingredients in sustainable packaging. This turned me on to a lot of great brands.

    • Reply ERIN BOYLE July 17, 2019 at 9:00 am

      So glad to hear that!

  • Reply Jessie July 17, 2019 at 9:11 am

    Excited to try out the membership!

    • Reply Alyson July 17, 2019 at 9:49 am

      I am wondering if you ever have problems with dish towels eventually turning moldy? After we use them, we hang them to dry in our kitchen and then wash after a few uses but eventually they all seem to turn moldy. Any suggestions?

      • Reply ERIN BOYLE July 17, 2019 at 9:54 am

        Fascinating. I’ve never, ever encountered a moldy dish towel/cloth/rag, etc, but if I did I think I would try to make sure I was wringing them out really well and washing more frequently! Hope that helps!

      • Reply Julia July 17, 2019 at 10:02 am

        Mine get mildewey if I use them more than one day. I’ve gotten into the habit of rinsing and wringing them out at the end of each day and hanging to dry. Then getting a fresh one for the next day. If they do get stinky I boil them for a bit.

        • Reply ERIN BOYLE July 17, 2019 at 10:24 am

          Interesting! I rinse and hang to dry after each use! Never had a mildew or mold problem!

          • Natalie F. July 17, 2019 at 12:57 pm

            Likewise, never had an issue but maybe the DIY vinegar cleaning sprays I use inhibit the mildew issue. They do inevitably get stained but once they get too stained I either use them for really messy cleanups (and store them out of sight) or I dye them to cover up the stains.

          • Susanne July 17, 2019 at 3:50 pm

            I think where one lives makes a difference. When I lived in NYC, with its overly heated apartments in the winter and AC in the summer (at least for me), I never had a problem with towels smelling of mold. Now that I live in a house in the country, I change my kitchen towel every two days so that it doesn’t reek of mildew.

          • ERIN BOYLE July 17, 2019 at 4:43 pm

            I’m sure that must be true if folks have this difficulty, tho I’ve lived in humid and A/C-free North Carolina apartments, muggy A/C-free Rhode Island apartments and sticky, dark A/C-free NYC apartments without laundry in the building and just haven’t run into this issue!

        • Reply DeAnna October 4, 2019 at 1:08 am

          Do you use fabric softeners or dryer sheets?

          • Janis Taylor October 5, 2019 at 7:56 pm

            Rinse in cold water seems to help

        • Reply Jayce October 28, 2020 at 1:23 pm

          Can I just buy a set or two vs a monthly subscription?

          • ERIN BOYLE October 28, 2020 at 2:29 pm

            You can! This discount only applies to the subscription but you can certainly buy from Mighty Nest directly!

        • Reply Carol Richardson November 17, 2020 at 7:21 pm

          That is how we do it also. I run them through the washer with hot water and add vinegar to the wash cycle. It takes the musty smell out and they seem to stay fresh longer.

      • Reply Sara July 17, 2019 at 11:39 am

        Alyson — this happens to my wash cloths and dish towels all the time. I also rinse them after every use and hand them to dry, but very quickly they are stinky and always dirty-looking. I even have the exact same wash cloths as in this post which I bought specifically because I thought they wouldn’t get gross and within two uses they were disgusting (I still use them but thye are now gray with the muted colors zigzagging across). I have no solution but would love one. I haven’t tried boiling them after every use but that seems like a not very environmentally friendly option (I also do my laundry on cold so maybe that is part of the problem).

        • Reply ERIN BOYLE July 17, 2019 at 11:51 am

          So funny. I have never had any issue at all with lingering stinkiness (in these cloths or any other kind of cloth I’ve used) and I’ve been paper towel-less in my house for more than ten years. I guess it all depends on climate and humidity? Yes: Cloths I use to clean up spills and messes do get stained eventually, but to me that’s just part and parcel of the switch!

        • Reply Cherie September 12, 2019 at 5:01 pm

          Try a drop or 2 of tea tree oil in the rinse water.

          • Linda October 6, 2019 at 2:57 pm

            Wondering why you all don’t just cut up old t shirts or old cotton dishtowels to use for rags or buy a dozen cotton diapers and cut them up.

          • ERIN BOYLE October 7, 2019 at 8:52 am

            Also great!

        • Reply Con September 18, 2019 at 9:45 am

          What dish soap do you use? I tried Dawn once and it left all my dishcloths super stinky!

          • Robin September 19, 2019 at 11:25 am

            Exactly what happens to me if I use Dawn. Otherwise, no problems.

          • Aly September 27, 2019 at 4:37 pm

            Oh yes!!! I just remembered when I used Dawn my sponges would get stinky very quickly. Good point. Maybe its the dish soap they are using.

          • Susan October 3, 2019 at 9:01 pm

            Wow- Dawn is what I have used for years and also have the stinky dish cloth issue! Will try a new, e-friendly soap!

          • Karla October 19, 2019 at 7:37 am

            The Environmental Working Group gave Dawn a ‘D’ grade because of it containing methylisothiazolinone, which is a “High Concern: acute aquatic toxicity; Some Concern: skin irritation/allergies/damage”. … Dawn also contains 1 4-dioxane which is considered a groundwater contaminant.May 29, 2014

          • Robin October 21, 2019 at 7:59 pm

            I know bath towels will smell like mildew if you use too much detergent. I’ve gotten in the habit of carefully measuring detergent and adding vinegar to rinse water.

          • Mary October 30, 2019 at 3:25 pm

            I was thinking it was the Dawn too. I have always used Dawn but it does seem to make my dish cloths stinky. Any suggestions on what other dish detergent to use instead? I like the way Dawn cleans but it’s getting to the point where I need to use another brand. I’m tired of nasty smelling dish cloths!

          • Cat October 30, 2020 at 8:10 am

            Never had that problem, or any problems, with Dawn! Must be your water. I’d get a good water softener before I’d ever give up on Dawn.

          • Kris Morden November 18, 2020 at 10:37 pm

            I switched from Dawn to Palmolive several years ago… My dish towels never stink now! That, and I rinse them in cold water….

        • Reply Susan September 25, 2019 at 5:28 pm

          I find if I wash any towel and cloth in a fromtnloading washing machine, I have this problem. I put a little bit of bleach in my towel loads and that fixes the problem. If you don’t like bleach, try a little vinegar.

        • Reply Karin October 10, 2019 at 11:10 pm

          I have a small trash bin (lidded) that I put a scoop of eco-friendly oxygen bleach and water in and my washcloths and dish towels go right in there to soak until the bin is full. Then I launder as usual and they don’t stink and even my eye makeup comes out!

        • Reply Jean October 18, 2019 at 7:11 pm

          You can microwave cotton cloths for one minute after a very thorough rinse. This has helped mine a lot.

      • Reply Jay July 17, 2019 at 1:25 pm

        Hanging dish towels and cloth napkins to dry in the kitchen sounds great, but where exactly? I’m sure we would have multiples to hang and no space. Ideas please!

      • Reply Sarah July 18, 2019 at 5:38 pm

        I find if I use a dish detergent with lavender in it, I don’t get a mildew smell in my dishcloth and I wring it out and leave it to dry over the divider between my sinks. If I use any other kind of dish soap, mildew smell comes on fast. Also, I think I have trained everyone to not leave a sopping wet cloth lying in the sink so that helps as well!

      • Reply Morgan September 14, 2019 at 8:04 pm

        Have you ever washed them with white vintage, salt and baking soda. It’s a good refresher for towels. It makes them softer and takes away any smells

        • Reply Tracy September 18, 2019 at 3:47 pm

          I put a little vinegar in my washer with my dish towels and dish clothes and if there is anything that smelled it doesn’t smell anymore.

      • Reply Sandra September 20, 2019 at 6:59 pm

        I have cut up my hubby’s old worn /washed out T-shirt’s into squares and also gotten some cheap at the thrift store to cut into squares. Super absorbent and use darker colors so things that would stain don’t show on the cloth after it’s washed. I gave some to my daughters and they use them as well. Both to wipe up messes or to use as simple cloth napkins. No one feels guilty messing them up. I grab one when working on my furniture refinishing, very versatile!

      • Reply Marie Lucero September 21, 2019 at 11:46 am

        It makes a huge difference if you rinse the cloth in COLD water and wring before hanging! If you rinse with warm or hot water the cloth is the RIGHT TEMPERATURE TO GROW MOLD AND MILDEW.

        • Reply Deb Long October 23, 2020 at 2:32 pm

          Is the use of bleach problematic? I’m new to this issue and bleach has been my go-to sanitizer for 45 years!

      • Reply Peggy September 23, 2019 at 4:23 pm

        Rinse them with cold water before hanging to dry! No more mold or mildew.

      • Reply Krystal Aurora September 26, 2019 at 6:08 pm

        Try an enzyme detergent.

      • Reply Denise September 29, 2019 at 12:05 am

        When my washcloths or towels start to get smelly I put a cup of white vinegar in the wash and it takes care of it!

      • Reply Kathleen Case October 4, 2019 at 2:31 am

        I like to occasionally wash mine with borax, then hang them to dry in the sun. It generally freshens them up.

      • Reply Brenda October 6, 2019 at 12:30 pm

        I wash all my towels in vinegar and some peroxide with your favorite detergent

      • Reply Elisha October 7, 2019 at 11:05 pm

        Vinegar and baking soda wash the towels in that works great for dish towels bath towels blankets

      • Reply Carol Hewitt October 28, 2020 at 6:48 pm

        I have a system. For the one to two days I use each cloth, I hang it over the faucet to dry between each use. If I happen to leave one in a wet clump, it goes straight to the laundry basket.
        The Laundry Basket changes over time – right now it’s a small nylon pop up container under the sink. The wet used cloth gets draped over the side – when I return in a day it’s always dry, so it gets flipped into the container and the currently wet one drapes on the side.
        I have 10 yo cloths still hanging in (pretty frayed)

      • Reply Sharon November 1, 2020 at 2:39 pm

        Rinse cloths after use with water as hot as you can stand to eliminate that moldy smell.

  • Reply Alyson July 17, 2019 at 11:41 am

    Yes, mildew is maybe a better description than mold. Thanks for suggestions.

    • Reply Sid July 17, 2019 at 1:04 pm

      I can recommend a quick hot wash with some white vinegar to get smells/mildew out of dish cloths/towels/etc. No need to boil.

  • Reply Raeka July 17, 2019 at 11:49 am

    Thank you so much for posting this website! It’s like you read my mind. I’ve been trying to come up with a way to stop using so much plastic for personal care and cleaning products without having to make everything myself. I wish I had the time to do that but with two kids and a job extra time is hard to come by.

    • Reply ERIN BOYLE July 17, 2019 at 11:52 am

      So glad! I hope it’s helpful for you!

  • Reply Natalie F. July 17, 2019 at 12:53 pm

    I took advantage of this RMTL offer the last time it came around and it was GREAT! I even got my parents and a coworker on board. I’ve since cancelled the membership solely because I was trying to trim my monthly budget, had made significant swaps in the sustainable/zero waste department, and was trying to cut down on incoming stuff to the household. Cloths instead of paper towels? Check. Glass containers instead of plastic? Check. Wool dryer balls, bar soap, reusable cloth coffee filters, metal straws, glass/metal water bottles and to go mugs? Check, check, check, you get the idea. While I haven’t gone entirely sustainable/zero waste, I’m working on it and have made a lot of improvements.

    For anyone on the fence about this, GO FOR IT! My experience with MightyNest and it propelled me into opting for more sustainable options. Even if you do get something that you might not use or already have enough of, just gift it! Friends and family might be able to use something even if you can’t.

    Thanks Erin, from long-time reader!

    • Reply ERIN BOYLE July 17, 2019 at 1:08 pm

      Natalie! So glad this worked out so well for you last time around! Thanks so much for writing!

  • Reply kim m July 17, 2019 at 1:43 pm

    So when are we getting a Simple Matters profile on your parents? Love a house tour!

    • Reply ERIN BOYLE July 17, 2019 at 2:06 pm


  • Reply Angela July 17, 2019 at 7:43 pm

    Like Natalie above, I started a Mighty Fix subscription when you last wrote about this company. I’ve kept my subscription active ever since, and I’ve also given two subscriptions as gifts. So many of the monthly fixes have become permanent changes in my home – Soapwalla cream deodorant, Swedish dishcloths, bamboo utensils in my glove box – I could go on! Because Mighty Nest lets you select a previous Fix as your current Fix, I often restock a previous item I’ve loved and continued to use, so I don’t always bring a new item into my home every month. And the free shipping of other items in your monthly order is a huge benefit. If you can afford $11 per month, this subscription is so worth it. I definitely get my money’s worth. Thanks for originally suggesting it, Erin! (And for those commenting above about problems with dishcloths getting grotty quickly, I can highly recommend the Swedish dishcloths from Mighty Nest. They dry quickly, they last a long time, and they are compostable when they do hit their end of life.)

    • Reply Angela July 17, 2019 at 7:44 pm

      Oh, and Bees Wrap! That Fix was a game changer!

      • Reply Ashley P July 18, 2019 at 12:01 pm

        I LOVE the Bees Wrap I got in my Fix! Also that’s awesome to know that you can select a previous Fix as your current Fix. Thanks for the tip 🙂

  • Reply Mary Kate July 18, 2019 at 9:40 am

    So cool. Generally I’m not a fan of subscription boxes as I don’t want any things I don’t need — are you able to choose what comes or they choose? Maybe I’ll just shop from the site instead…

    • Reply ERIN BOYLE July 18, 2019 at 10:02 am

      I get that! They choose what comes, so this is especially great for folks just getting started who’d like a helping hand!

  • Reply Jenny July 18, 2019 at 5:13 pm

    When I started using cloth diapers 7 years ago I decided to also forgo paper towel. Cleaning up kids spills was easier with actual towels so I chopped up worn out bath towels and continue to upcycle worn out bath towels. They go to the laundry and have an endless life as absorbant rags. I haven’t bought paper towels in 7 years of parenting 🙂 These Mighty Nest products look neat. Thank you Erin

  • Reply Liesl Schick July 18, 2019 at 8:55 pm

    I’m so excited! I just signed up. We do more recycling than garbage and I want to take it further. Thank you Erin!

  • Reply M September 17, 2019 at 11:18 pm

    I have used glass containers for years. Try not to have any plastic in my house. Instead of paper towels I use washcloths or rags.. if they get smelly and dirty I wash them in the washing machine. So I don’t quite understand why I would buy these and/or have a subscription every month when I don’t want extra things in my house thank you.

    • Reply ERIN BOYLE September 18, 2019 at 6:49 am

      You definitely wouldn’t! This doesn’t sound like the right fit for you at all.

  • Reply Jessica September 21, 2019 at 11:52 am

    What kind of packaging does Mighty Fix use? Is there any plastic?

    I worry about the sustainability of a monthly subscription. Even if I recycle the cardboard, it’s waste. I wish they did a large box quarterly instead of a small one monthly.

    • Reply ERIN BOYLE September 21, 2019 at 8:39 pm

      I hear that! Understandable if it’s not right for you, but they do a really laudable job of reusing packaging and minimizing waste! Indeed their subscription price has gone up very slightly since I first wrote about them because of their continued efforts to minimize shipping waste. As a personal anecdote, every package I’ve received from them as part of these partnerships have been sent in packaging that was clearly made for a specific brand/company and was being reused for a second time by Mighty Nest.

  • Reply Catt September 24, 2019 at 6:54 am

    Would love to cut paper towels from our home; curious what you recommend for covering food to warm in the microwave?

    • Reply ERIN BOYLE September 24, 2019 at 9:07 am

      I think a cloth napkin would do the trick!

      • Reply Mary September 25, 2019 at 3:55 pm

        I only use paper towels to oil my cast iron. I’d be happy to hear other suggestions if someone has one…

    • Reply Elissa October 23, 2019 at 9:50 am

      I use a Pyrex lid from a set of ceramic pans. A Corelle plate also works.

  • Reply Stephanie Cook September 24, 2019 at 5:04 pm

    I foster dogs & lots of puppies. I have been using washable pee pads with minimal use of plastic/disposable pee pads. I still feel I have to have paper towels for those pee/poop accidents. Pick up poop…throw it all away. I’m very hesitant to use cloth for gross/contaminated messes (worms, germs, etc) & then putting them in my washing machine. I still have some qualms about washable pee pads but puppies can’t chew them up & make a bigger mess so the pros outweigh the cons for those.
    Any suggestions for something other than paper towels for this type of thing?

    • Reply Connie Ordway October 4, 2019 at 10:45 am

      I use toilet paper to pick up poop, and a rag to wipe pee, which of course goes directly into the wash machine.

  • Reply Becky Lewis October 8, 2019 at 10:20 pm

    I’ve just signed up with Might Fix. Thank you for the coupon! I’m looking forward to my first shipment! I’ve slowly been making positive changes in my cleaning products and I’ve started using a glass bottle for my water. I’ve ditched the dryer sheets a couple of years ago. I’m looking forward to learning new ways and trying new products to help make some great changes!

  • Reply Patricia Childress October 27, 2020 at 3:59 pm

    Can you order without a subscription?

    • Reply ERIN BOYLE October 28, 2020 at 9:48 am


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