A highly absorbent form of tissue paper, known in North America as paper towel, used to mop up spills and unfortunate patches of mystery liquid in the kitchen. Unlike normal tissue paper or toilet roll, which have to be soft enough to feel comforting and pleasant when touching the human skin, kitchen paper just has to absorb. It has to suck up a whole load of liquid and then be thrown away - it's that simple. So while tissue paper is advertised by red-nosed, pretty actresses crying in front of weepy movies or suffering from mild head colds in front of roaring log fires, kitchen paper is advertised by businesslike, strong-looking actresses, posing either as housewives or (in at least one commercial I have seen) barmaids cleaning up after closing time.
Kitchen paper's usefulness is not limited to spills, however. Just like the first person who realized that toilet roll makes a very effective tree decoration, many household experimenters have found that thick, absorbent paper has a variety of other uses in the home, garden or amateur laboratory, including (but not limited to):
I'm not going to even try to list all the available brands of kitchen paper, because it is so easy to make that most stores have their own in-house brand as well as all the usual suspects. Every now and again some marketing executive decides that their new kitchen paper technology has the power to revolutionize household absorbency forever, ushering in a golden age of food drainage and spill soakage, and they run an ad campaign featuring the words "soft", "quilted", "powerful", "suction" and "unrivalled".
If anyone wants to buy some used kitchen paper manufacturing equipment (well, why not?) you can find one here (ref no H095502): http://www.acmesurplus.com/miscellaneous_paper_machinery.htm
For all your absorbent paper needs: Indus Paper Boards