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Posted by Nicholas Crusie

Did you know?

Any cotton towel, Turkish or Egyptian preferably, will be higher quality and knock off those boxes for absorbency, softness, and drying quickly.

USEFUL TIPS

Bath Sheet vs. Bath Towel: Which one is right for you?

6 mins read

What do you grab for as you step out of the shower - a bath sheet or a bath towel?

Do you know which one you own? Maybe you own both, in which case the next question is if you can tell the difference between the two. Whether you can or can't, do you know what the difference actually is/

Ok let's slow down here, we don't want anyone to feel overwhelmed. If you don't know anything about any of the questions we just asked, that's completely OK. 

In fact, we're thinking maybe most of you don't know, which is actually exactly why we're writing this. We want to help you understand the difference between bath sheets and towels and figure out which one is right for you. 

Mastering the in's and out's of the linen world will not only optimize your post-shower experience, but as an added bonus, it will probably make you feel pretty fancy, even elegant if you will. Martha Stewart, who? Let's get into it.

The Difference

In short, the difference is the size.

Bath sheets are bigger than bath towels.

Bath Sheets:

  • 40" x 70" inches
  • More expensive (most towels that are "bath sheet" size are also higher end)
  • More absorbent that bath towels (usually)
  • Likely to be hung on a hook on the back of a door (because it's bigger and may otherwise touch the floor)

Bath Towels:

  • 30" x 56" inches
  • Less expensive (bath towels are usually lower quality than bath sheets)
  • Average absorbency 
  • Likely to be hung on a towel rack

That's not too hard to remember, right?

At first thought, it may seem like differentiating between bath sheets and towels is unnecessary, kind of like maybe having a coffee, tea, soup, sundae, and dessert spoon and being a stickler for which one gets used when. Not that there's anything wrong with that! 

Which Type of Towel Is Right for You?

Just knowing the difference between sheets and towels may not be enough to help you figure out which one is right for you and why. Here are some questions you can ask yourself to help figure it out:

Is one towel sufficient for drying you off after your shower?

When you hop out of the shower or bath and start drying off, does one towel usually do the trick? If a standard towel is able to dry you off and not end up too wet at the end so that it's uncomfortably damp, then a bath towel may be good enough for you. 

Sometimes a towel can dry you off completely, but then it's so wet and heavy that it isn't nice to continue to use. Perhaps after drying off, you like to stand there in your towel and continue with a skincare routine; if the towel is too wet and heavy, this won't be comfortable and you may be better suited to a bath sheet. 

How well snuggled do you like to feel?

A bath sheet offers considerably more surface area - all the more room to snuggle up between. If you like feeling well wrapped while you do whatever one does after a shower, then a bath sheet is your best bet.

If you just need your towel to dry off and then you slip into a robe or clothing, a standard bath towel will do the trick.

Are you an NBA player? Are you a toddler or young child?

This isn't a serious question, but it is important to take into consideration how much space you take up and therefore how big you may need your towel to be. You don't want to be drowning in your towel, but you also don't want to feel too naked as you're drying off. Size does (sometimes) matter. 

What type of towel is your bathroom able to accommodate?

There's no point in getting a towel that won't fit in your bathroom properly.

If you're thinking of getting a bath sheet, make sure that there's somewhere it will be able to hang in your bathroom that makes sense. 

If you only have one towel rack that is relatively low, a bath sheet may be too big and dangle too close to the floor. If there's the possibility that it will be hung up carelessly (we know you aren't lazy, time is valuable and we don't always have the time to hang towels back up perfectly) and perhaps touch the floor, your towel will get dirty. 

Couldn't I just use my beach towel as a bath sheet?

You may be thinking that any of the beach towels you have in the closet could be used as a bath sheet. 

Our answer is no, not really. Beach towels are made of thinner materials so that they won't get heavy when they are loaded up with sand. They're thinner because they're not designed to be used as a bath towel. They're intended to be used to lightly dry you off and have the sun do the rest of the work. Thinner towels also mean they're not as plush or soft. Your body is a temple, remember? You want to get out of the shower and be greeted by a luxuriously soft towel, just like you deserve. 

Plus, having a bright polka-dotted or funkily designed towel is fun, but having it hang in your bathroom may clash with the rest of your decor? Just a thought. 

Other Towel Considerations

Material

Most towels are usually made of either polyester or cotton. Choose cotton.

Polyester is a synthetic fibre, which basically means it's a hyper-engineered type of plastic. Polyester towels dry quickly but won't be absorbent or soft. Leave polyester towels for drying off your dog with, or better yet, in any road-side motel. 

Cotton is the way to go. Any cotton towel, Turkish or Egyptian preferably, will be higher quality and knock off those boxes for absorbency, softness, and drying quickly - triple whammy. A towel made of Turkish cotton is your best option for getting you that ultra-plush experience without sacrificing functionality. 

Weight

Towels are measured in grams per weight (GSM). A higher GSM indicates more absorbency potential. Higher GSM usually correlates with slower drying time, but not always and not always to an equal degree. 

Color and style

Color and style of course play a role too. There's nothing wrong with wanting your bathroom to match and flow with itself and the rest of your home. 

Cleanliness

Not all towels are created equal. And just because you're clean every time you use your towel doesn't necessarily mean that your towel is staying clean too. A study at the University of Arizona found that 90% of bath towels were contaminated with coliform bacteria. (Google what exactly coliform bacteria is at your own will...)

Towels with silver fibers woven into the fabric can prevent 99.9% of bacterial growth through a natural process called Ionization. Clean towels warrant less frequent washing, prevent odors, and nurture healthy skin. 

You Now Have All The Tools You Need

We've given you all the information and considerations you need to make your choice. Everyone is different and it really comes down to your own preferences. 

Having the right type of towel makes a small but real difference. It's the little (or big) things like this that can add up to really enhance your day to day life. 

There's nothing to make you feel pampered like getting out of the shower, warm and squeaky clean, and getting bundled up in the perfect towel!

Did you know?

Any cotton towel, Turkish or Egyptian preferably, will be higher quality and knock off those boxes for absorbency, softness, and drying quickly.

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