Style/ Beauty

The best bath towels to elevate your bath time in 2022 that are soft, fluffy and absorbent

Wrapping yourself in soft, luxury bath towels is one of life’s greatest pleasures. Picture it: you step onto your bath mat after a hot shower of soak in the bath (with a book propped up on your bath tray and a burning scented candle), then grab your softest, extra large and fluffy towel that has been warming on the radiator. It’s one of my favourite parts of the day – ‘cos after a stressful day working beneath the duvet, focusing on life’s simple pleasures is where it’s at

The best bath towels, when treated with with care they deserve, will last for years – retaining that super-plush soft feel you relish. As such, spending on some heavyweight, absorbent towels and bath sheets is never a waste. 

Rest assured: expensive bath towels aren’t always the ones with the greatest fluff. Some of the best towels can be snapped up without breaking the bank, with thanks to brands like Dusk, John Lewis, The White Company and M&S. From Egyptian cotton towels to the best bath towels on Amazon, we’ve tried and tested a whole host of bath sheets to prove it. Tough job, hey?

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What should I look for when buying bath towels? How can you tell a good quality towel?

There are a few things to look out for in your quest to find the best bath towels. This *isn’t* the same as picking up any old beach towel and being done with it. Here’s everything you need to know.

1. GSM

GSM, or grams per square metre, is the thread count of your bath towels. The higher the thread count, the more luxurious they’ll feel. You want to be looking at bath towels with a thread count of around 600gsm. 

2. Size

This one is kind of obvious, but you’d be surprised how many people get caught out when buying bath towels online. Most towels by larger brands come in a whole range of sizes, from face towels to jumbo bath sheets and washcloths/hand towels. Make sure you’ve selected a bath towel or something larger if you’re going to be using it to dry yourself after a bath or shower. These are your typical bath towel dimensions:

  • Bath towel: L130 x W70cm
  • Bath sheet: L150 x W90cm
  • XL bath sheet: L180 x W100cm

3. Are they quick-drying? 

No one has time to stand dripping in the bathroom for an hour post-shower, so make a beeline for a quick-drying towel that won’t feel damp after 30 seconds. Perfect for children and busy households, hydrocotton towels – like The White Company’s plush bath towels – tend to be very fast drying with thanks to the “low twist” technology they’ve been crafted using. They’ll stay ultra-soft and supple even after washing them.

4. Pattern

Yes, your towels need to be absorbent to help you dry, and soft to avoid irritation of the skin. But you also want them to look great, right? We’ve rounded up the best bath towels that are available in all manner of colours – from pastel hues to muted tones – that’ll suit a wide variety of interior styles. If you’re more of a minimalist, you might choose something monochrome or neutral, while those who want to add a bit of interest to a small room might opt for pattern – like stripes or jacquard. Anthropologie has an excellent selection if you fall into the latter camp.

5. Finish

Take a look at the design of your bath towels. Ideally, you should buy bath sheets which have double-turned edges and double stitching to avoid fraying over time.

How often should you buy new bath towels?

To be honest? This is kind of like asking for the length of a piece of string. There are no rules, but if you invest in good quality bath towels, they should last for years and years. We’d recommend having a good old sort out and getting rid of anything that has frayed, lost it’s softness or is looking a little old – then picking up some waffle towels or Supima cotton numbers to replace them with. 

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What to do with old bath towels

If you have any towels that you no longer need, make sure you dispose of them in an eco-friendly fashion. Your best bet is taking them to a local textile recycling bin, but, if you can’t do that, reuse them for pets or take them to a pet shelter (they’ll always be in need of new towels!)

How to keep your bath towels feeling soft and fluffy

There are a few things you can do to keep your towels feeling super-soft well into the new year and beyond. First, run your washing machine on empty routinely, using the hottest cycle you can and with a cup of distilled white wine vinegar in the detergent drawer. This will reduce the build-up of limescale in your washing machine, which has the tendency to reduce towel softness.

When washing your towels, don’t use fabric conditioner (it can reduce absorbency). Instead, shake them out when the cycle is finished, then dry them in the tumble dryer. If you hang them on an outdoor washing line to dry, avoid direct sunlight as it might cause your bath towels to fade.

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The best bath towels at a glance

For more from our Commerce Writer Sophie Cockett, follow her on Instagram @sophiecockettx.

What are the best bath towels to buy? Scroll for our edit of the best bath towels from our favourite retailers below.

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