Guide to buying towels

Towels are an important item of every household. Whether it’s a bath towel or a hand towel, you use it every day. Knowing which towels to buy may not seem like a particularly difficult task, but it can be a problem if you’re not sure what kind of towel you’re looking for.

Our towel buying guide will help you differentiate between the towel fabrics on the market. Plus, we also have tips for choosing a towel based on how it feels to your skin, weight, and size.

Sheets and Towels: What’s the Difference?

The difference between a bath towel and a bath towel

When you’re shopping for towels, it’s important to understand the difference between a bath towel and a bath towel. This is not difficult to understand. Towels are larger in size than bath towels. Although bath towels are used for the same purpose as bath towels, they are large enough to just wrap around your bottom.

Larger towels provide more coverage and therefore can absorb more water than towels. Moreover, the difference in size also shows the difference in weight. Towels will be much heavier and sometimes denser than towels. Additionally, towels are a popular choice in households with both children and adults. They are the perfect size for kids and are a gentler choice for adults, especially if you like to wrap your hair in a towel.

Different towels, different sizes

Different types and sizes of towels

You should buy a towel set instead of a towel to make it easier for you. A set usually includes a bath or bath towel, hand towel, bath towel, and sometimes a bath mat. Each type is a different type of towel used for different purposes in the home. Buying a set also ensures that all your towels look the same. While scarves of the same color may not be as important to some people, they can be important to others.

Type of towel Dimensions in cm
Bath plate 90 x 160
Towel 70 x 140
Handkerchief 40 x 60
Bath mats 50 x 80

30 x 30

Sizes vary by brand but this is the average size of a bath towel that you can find everywhere. In addition to the towels mentioned above, you also get beach towels. Beach towels are not included in the set so you have to buy them separately and they are slightly longer than your towels. Moreover, the size difference between the bath mat and the hand towel is not much but the GSM of the towel makes the difference.

Terminology used in towels!

Well, there are certain towel terms that you should know. These terms are used quite often when buying towels and can be confusing if you don’t know what they mean.


This is a term that you will hear quite often when searching for towels. It means grams per square meter. GSM simply refers to the amount of cotton used to make towels. More cotton = more GSM. Basically, it determines the thickness and weight of your scarf. So a bath mat, as mentioned above, has more GSM which means it is thicker and heavier than your normal bath towel. GSM for bathroom rugs can be a bit higher than 900 while your regular bath towel ranges between 400 and 700gsm.


While yarn doesn’t seem to be a new term, understanding its significance is crucial. The way the yarn for your scarf has been spun makes a lot of difference to the feel of the scarf. You can buy a single yarn or a blend. A single yarn will contain only cotton, while a blend will have cotton and synthetics twisted into a yarn to form yarn.


If you are looking for soft towels, you should check the layer of the towel. Ply refers to the number of fibers that are bonded together to form a single strand. A single layer will have only one strand and layer 2 will have two strands forming a slightly thicker yarn. The thicker the thread, the thicker and denser the towel will be.

Cotton or bamboo

Towel fabric

The two fabrics you’ll find when looking for towels are cotton and bamboo. There are many different blends and types of cotton available in the market to identify. Different types of cotton have different fibers and so the feel of those towels against your skin will also be different. Just like cotton, bamboo is a material of natural origin, so it is quite breathable and gentle on the skin. Both of these materials are perfect for the skin.

There are a few things you need to keep in mind when choosing the right towel for yourself. Along with GSM, grade and fiber, durability and drying time are important.

Turkish Cotton

Long spun cotton, Turkish cotton is the perfect choice for humid climates. Turkish cotton can be very soft and durable. It is highly absorbent due to its fine fibers allowing it to dry faster.

Egyptian Cotton

Beloved by the cotton crowd, Egyptian cotton has always been associated with luxury. These towels are usually very smooth and feel like clouds on your skin. The yarn is made from extra-long fibers and the fibers give these scarves a luxurious feel.

Organic cotton

The only difference between cotton and organic cotton is how it is grown. Organic cotton is grown without the use of any pesticides or chemicals. Towels made from organic cotton are breathable and quite durable.

Cotton Pima

Grown in the southern region of the United States, Pima cotton is an excellent material for towels. Pima cotton towels are made of extra-long, thick fibers that create a durable and absorbent material. This cotton towel is perfect if you’re looking for something that’s not too harsh on your skin.


Cotton and rayon are mixed together to form the absolute perfect yarn for towels. Great for all weather, bamboo towels are durable, breathable and have anti-bacterial properties. Bamboo towels are quite cheap and therefore they are a great investment.

Which GSM should you use?

The quality and density of your towels can be determined by the number of grams per square meter. Depending on the GSM, you can figure out how to use the towel whether you want to use it for the kitchen or as an exercise towel.

400 or less

These towels will be extremely light. This also means they will dry faster. So towels with GSM under 400 are the perfect choice for the kitchen, the gym or even on the beach. Beach towels need to be absorbent and quick to dry, so around 350-400 GSM is what you should look for.

400 to 600

You can have towels for every room in this GSM band. Towels, hand towels, beach towels, guest towels, etc. are all included in this range. Towels in this range are a bit heavier and absorbent.

600 and more

While the scale usually goes up to 900, there can be exceptions to the rule. These towels are your high-quality, heavyweight champions. Towels of this type are heavy, very absorbent and soft. Although they take longer to dry, you can feel the luxury every time these towels touch your skin.

Aesthetics of bath towels

Aesthetics of towels

While towels are an essential part of every person’s household, they also add to the aesthetics of the room. Don’t think of your towels as just a utility item, they can look as elegant as your favorite tablecloths. Since they come in a variety of colors, it’s always a fun idea to mix and match them. If you have a specific color combination for your bathroom, you can enhance the style by adding towels that match the color scheme.

Even if your bathroom doesn’t look like a hotel bathroom, adding some colorful or even neutral colored towels to a plain bathroom can change everything. Alternatively, you can have plain colored kitchen towels that match your kitchen and dining area. There are many patterns and colors that you can choose from. Pattern and color do not affect the quality of the towel, so choose the one you like.

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