The Difference between Bath Towels and Bath Sheets


Bathroom towels come in a lot of varieties. In fact, you probably never realized just how many choices there were until you walked into a store looking to buy a towel for the first time. You can find all different kinds of sizes, materials, and colors on the shelves, so where do you start?

The most important thing to start with is the size. Consider your needs so that you can pick the towels that are right for you. Here are some basic things to know about the difference between bath towels and bath sheets:

Bath Towels

• Come in all different sizes, typically ranging in size from 27″ x 52″ to
30″ x 58″.
• Very versatile when it comes to drying since they’re great for blot drying and wrapping up hair.
• Often are available in color coordinated or decorative sets.
• Easily fit on towel racks either bi- or tri-folded racks.
• Considered the standard in bath linens.

Bath Sheets

• Usually 35″ x 60″ – much larger than bath towels.
• Considered more luxurious.
• More absorbent because of the extra surface area.
• Great for wrapping around the entire body.
• Best to hang on towel hooks since they are too big for towel racks.
• Come in more standard colors that usually coordinate with towel sets.
• More expensive than towels since they use more material.

Towel Material

Towels are, of course, made of many different materials. Cotton towels have been a popular choice for years because of their level of absorbency, but they are quickly being replaced with many other options based on quality. With cotton towels, there are three basic kinds:

• Egyptian Cotton – Considered the king of cotton, this form has extra long fibers that make them more absorbent and more durable than other forms. It gets its name from its country of origin along the Nile River.
• Pima Cotton – Very similar to its Egyptian cousin but grows in the southwestern portion of the United States. It also has long fibers and is very absorbent and strong.
• Turkish Cotton – The defining characteristic of this type of cotton is that it gets softer each time you wash or use it. This type of cotton is typically found in beach towels, but not limited to that application. It’s also highly absorbent.

You probably already know that cotton is not the only type of fabric used in towel manufacturing anymore. Many people prefer other materials, like Bamboo, for their unique benefits, such as, extra absorbency, moisture-wicking properties, softness, and economic footprint.

  • Bamboo – Twice as soft as cotton.
  • Bamboo towels have an extra luxurious feel and are also naturally odor-resistant
  • Hypoallergenic
  • Bamboo is resistant to odors, something cotton has never been able to boast.
  • Bamboo towels are highly absorbent and also have special property of wicking away moisture effectively.
  • Many find the real benefit here is that it’s such an earth-friendly choice since bamboo is able to regenerate so quickly and naturally, with some species growing three feet every day at maturity.
  • Microfiber Fabric – These man-made fibers are very absorbent, but not very soft. They’re not very ideal for bath towels, but you can find them available in this material. Most people prefer to use these as beach towels or towels in the kitchen for drying dishes and wiping up spills.

Things to Know Before Buying

The thread count is one way to tell exactly what kind of towels you’re going to get; the higher the number, the better the towel’s quality. Of course, if it’s possible, feeling and handling the towel will usually help you decide if the material is thin or will fall apart after a few uses.

Another thing to keep in mind is the size of the loops. Long and thick loops are better for absorbing liquid and increase in softness. The longer the loops, the more luxurious the towel is going to feel.

The next time you’re looking for the perfect bath sheets or towels, keep some of these tips in mind. There are many options, but you don’t have to be overwhelmed or confused. Once you know what you’re looking for, it’s much easier to buy the type that is right for you.