Etiquettes to use napkin during meals

Napkins are an important element of table etiquette. Using it properly can portray hygiene and mannerism. Follow the below steps to use your napkin the right way.


Place the napkin on your lap in the right away

The first thing after sitting on your chair is to politely pick up the napkin and rest it on your lap. Care should be taken that you do not make the noise of the plate or spoons while doing so. Hold you napkin firmly so that it does not fall down.

Carefully wipe your mouth

You must wipe your mouth at regular intervals of your meals. While doing so you need to dab the napkin slightly on your mouth, rather than strongly rubbing it sideways. You take care that the mouth is clean after it is dabbed on it. Moreover, you should clean your mouth with the napkin before having your glass of wine or alcohol. This avoids any food residue or greasiness on the glass.


Do not use it as a handkerchief:

Always remember napkin is to either gently wipe your hands or dab on your mouth. It cannot be mistaken to a handkerchief. You cannot blow your nose or wipe the sweat on your face. You can always take a small break in between the meals to rush to the washroom and do so.

Be careful while getting up:

Always take care that the napkin should be placed neatly on your seat and not on the table or the hands of the chair. This is important during the small breaks you take during the meal. Once you are done with the meal completely, you need to place the napkin on the side of your plate. The gesture should be light, polite and without any noise.


Wearing your napkin like a Cravat- a big NO

Adults do not do so. Babies use napkins as Cravat. Hence, do not imitate anyone else too doing this, thinking it is formal.

Wrapping it up the right way:

Always wait for the host to mention either by gesture or verbally that the meal is complete. The host might do so either by placing his/her napkin on the table next to the plate. Imitate the host if any confusions. However, never place it on the top of the plate.


A few tips followed can show chivalry and mannerisms on the dining table. Confused? You can always imitate the others!

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