Find Out What Makes for the Best Possible Beach Towel

By Ava Brown, September 16, 2020

Winter lovers would probably agree with me that the past few days were magical, especially for those of you who live in the southeast of Australia. Thanks to the rare snowfall  brought by the Antarctic air, we got to enjoy some amazing views and fresh weather.

But who are we kidding, no matter how much some of us crave winter, we cannot imagine our lives without those Australian hot summer days. It’s in our DNA, so I’m sure that once the sun peaks and the temperatures start rising, we’ll be all about putting on our thongs and bikinis and go lay down on the towel on some sandy beach. But taking just about any towel won’t cut it.

The one you take with you should be thick and absorbent enough to soak up all the water from your body and hair once you get out of the ocean. And besides this, a beach towel should be big enough to cover your body while being stylish enough to make you feel cool wrapped in it.

Pick the Right Material

Without a doubt, this is one of the first things you need to consider when investing in a good towel. Comfort, quality and softness should be always a priority when buying a towel.

pink blue light green and orange beach towels white white stripes

Source: aliexpress.com

Cotton

When it comes to towels, cotton is considered one of the best materials. It’s soft, absorbent, fluffy and it can dry quite fast. These things are quite important to look for, especially the drying property, as the towel needs to dry fast in a short period of time, so it could absorb the excess water from your body the next time you come out of the water too. What’s more, the quicker the towel dries, the faster you’ll be able to remove the sand from it.

Except for traditional cotton, you can also invest in an Egyptian cotton beach towel. This type of cotton a higher quality one because of its extra-long fibres and high absorbency. Generally speaking, Egyptian cotton is picked by hand which adds to the fibre resistance and material longevity. Both traditional and Egyptian cotton towels are antibacterial and porous, allowing air to pass through. This puts bacteria, odour and mould at bay which is exactly what we need from a towel.

Bamboo

Another great natural and eco-friendly material is bamboo. Just like cotton, bamboo beach towels are highly absorbent, heavenly soft, antibacterial and hypoallergenic. When compared to cotton, bamboo towels can absorb water four times better and they can also dry faster. So, it’s no wonder why bamboo towels are also known as quick-dry towels. Unlike some synthetic materials, bamboo beach towels are no harsh to the skin, causing no irritations or rushes. This makes bamboo towels ideal for sensitive skin as well.

In case you wonder ‘are bamboo towels better than cotton’, definitely yes. Besides being softer and more absorbent, bamboo towels keep their shape better than cotton which makes them more durable. In other words, bamboo towels will last you much longer than cotton. Just like cotton, bamboo towels can also come in a variety of sizes, styles and designs, making your choice easier. Personally, I love stripes both on clothes and towels, which is why I usually stick to the basic striped bamboo towels. I have several of them and the navy/white combo is my favourite.

colourful beach towels

Source: pinterest.com.au

Important Notes

Since bamboo is a natural material, these towels don’t need any fabric softener to make them softer. The use of softener will only make them less absorbent which is not good.

Usually, these towels shouldn’t be washed using water temperature that is higher than 40°C.

Air drying is the best way to dry these towels, but if in a hurry, tossing them in the dryer on a lower heat is allowed.

Microfiber

Although they are somewhat popular, I wouldn’t invest in a microfiber towel since it’s made of polyester and polyamide blend. Although quick-drying, the cons  of using and wearing polyester material are many. The reason why microfiber towels became popular is that this material is extremely durable, more durable than natural fibres. It’s lightweight and very compact when folded.

white and blue striped beach towels

Source: babam-mallorca.com

Size & Thickness

While a lot of people think that bath towels can do a good job, this is not true at all. Beach towels are longer and wider than bath towels as their purpose is to provide you with comfort while being able to cover a lounge chair. Generally speaking, the dimensions of beach towels can range from about 80cm x 160cm to 100cm x 180cm.

Now although it’s preferable for the towel to be thick, it shouldn’t be as thick as a luxury bath towel. When determining thickness, just look at the towel’s GSM (grams per square meter). This is an industry-standard that shows the material density, referring to the weight of the fabric woven into a square meter. Generally speaking, the GSM of towels ranges between 300 and 900 GSM, whereas the lower the number, the thinner the towel.

Consequently:

  • 300 – 400 GSM towels are thin and dry quickly. However, they are usually the least durable beach towel option.
  • 400 – 600 GSM towels are thick, medium weight and the most commonly used beach towels. Although heavier than the previous type, these towels can also dry within a short period of time.
  • 600 – 900 GSM towels are considered the thickest and most luxurious type. These towels have the best absorbent properties and are usually designed for baths. They are not the ideal option for the beach since it can take longer for them to dry.