Reusable bags are a great alternative to plastic bags, especially at a time when the environment appears to be having a meltdown (quite literally). With plastic bag bans going into effect globally and stateside, popularity for reusable bags has soared. Not only do they help reduce the amount of waste going into our landfills, we have to admit, they're pretty stylish, too.

From grocery bags to organic cotton totes and jute bags, there are reusable bags for every occasion, made from a wide range of fabrics and materials. However, if you forget to clean them, they could harbor harmful bacteria and therefore, become bad for your health.

The solution? Treat them like you would your dirty laundry. For the most part, they are easy to clean, so there's really no excuse. Here's how:

Canvas Bags 

Canvas totes are probably the easiest type of reusable bag to clean. When you feel they are ready to be washed, just throw them in the laundry with some eco-friendly detergent and then run them through the dryer or lay flat to dry.

Insulated Grocery Bags 

By now, you should be separating your meats from the rest of your groceries by sorting them into different bags. If you don't already do this, we advise you start now if you want to prevent cross-contamination. Insulated grocery bags are ideal for carrying your meats but don't forget to wipe them down after each use with a disinfecting wipe.

Recycled Bags 

Bags made from recycled materials are also easy to wash. For recycled shopping bags, we suggest hand washing them with warm soapy water and putting them on the line to dry.

Now that you have a better idea of just how easy it is to clean your reusable bags, you're probably wondering why you never cleaned them in the first place.