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What are the moistened packaged towelettes called in restaurants? They are used to wipe the hands prior to eating. Thanks!

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They are called お絞り, typically written in Kana as おしぼり.

The word お絞り comes from the verb 絞る meaning "to wring", with the honorific prefix お.

If you want to be more specific:

  • 布製おしぼり are made from cloth.
  • 紙製おしぼり are made from paper (these are the disposable, plastic packaged ones)
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    お手拭き is what I normally hear for the paper ones. – BJCUAI Sep 22 at 2:18

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