What’s the Difference Between a Bath Sheet and a Bath Towel?

by iupilon
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People are often confused with the difference between a bath sheet vs. a bath towel. What is a bath sheet? What’s the real difference between bath towels vs. bath sheets?

In today’s blog, we explore the difference between bath sheets and bath towels, including microfiber bath towels.

What Is a Bath Towel Used for?

Bath towels have always been a necessity because they’re the most appropriate type of fabric to dry ourselves with when we take a dip or when we shower. This also applies to newer towels like microfiber bath towels that promise high and quick absorbency after use. If you need a primer on choosing new bath towels, check out our checklist below:

  • Pick for comfort – Regardless of the mix of materials that manufacturers use in their bath towels, we have a more practical requirement when searching for new ones. The towel has to eco-friendly, absorbent, and durable. It should also be soft and comfortable on the skin because you will pat and rub your skin with it. Should your towel be any less soft, you may end up with sensitive skin after using it. That’s why we always recommend that people pick towels depending on how comfortable and soft they are. The softer and more comfortable a towel is, the better suited it is for long-term use.
  • Pick for its absorbency – This is one of the essential requirements for bath towels, especially if you are shopping on the high-end side. As a general rule, the thicker towels tend to be more absorbent simply because there is more material to draw water away from the skin. Water needs to be stored or absorbed for your skin to be dry. The more material there is, the faster this process.
  • Pick for the softness of the towel – Many towels are softer in the store compared to after they have been washed for the first time. This is because manufacturers apply a special fabric softener on the surface of towels, so they are as fluffy as they can be when they are picked up for the first time.

What Is a Bath Sheet for?

If you have already spent some time window-shopping for new towels, you’ve probably encountered at least half a dozen categories, and it can be confusing at one point. For example, what is a bath sheet? Is a bath sheet a towel, too? Bath towels and bath sheets have the same function. These are thicker than usual fabrics designed to absorb water from any surface (not just the body).

Bath sheets are unique because they are larger and thicker than regular bath towels. This being the case, you can expect a more comfortable time using bath sheets as these naturally offer more coverage. Some bath sheets measure a whopping 40” x 70”, about fourteen inches or more than a foot longer than your average bath towel. In general, bath sheets measure almost 70% more than their regular towel counterparts.

What Is the Best Material for A Bath Towel?

One of the best materials for a bath towel is rayon, which is manufactured from bamboo. Bamboo is used for manufacturing different kinds of products, is lightweight, easy on the skin, and is best for the manufacture of different kinds of fabrics for clothing and towels.

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What Is the Best Material for A Bath Sheet?

The golden standard of bath sheets and other higher-quality towels has always been cotton. The Egyptian long-staple cotton and the ultra-soft Turkish cotton are two of the most popular materials for higher-end towels.

A more luxurious experience awaits you with bath sheets.  If you want, you can lounge around wrapped in a super soft bath sheet. Be sure to check the material of the bath sheet before buying—runner-up materials for bath sheets are polyester and nylon, and microfiber.

The main reason folks pick these two materials is that they tend to dry much more quickly than cotton. Cotton takes its sweet time in drying, as you may have known already, and when the material is much thicker and heavier than usual, you may also have to air out the bath sheet outside to avoid any off smells. Other than these minor inconveniences, it is still a good idea to invest in quality bath sheets, especially if you want to wow your guests and have bath linen that lasts many years.

But what about beach towels? Are beach towels the same as bath sheets? By design, no, they aren’t. Bath towels may seem like they are also bath sheets because of how big they are. However, beach towels are meant to be placed on the ground so you can lay down on the beach. Beach towels are made with thinner material, and they are not as absorbent as genuine bath towels and bath sheets. They can still be used, but don’t expect the same level of absorbency.

When picking out new towels, always consider the size that you need. When they are all nicely folded, all bath towels and bath sheets look alike. You need to spread them out and visualize how useful the differences in the sizes are. If you are a tall person, for example, and would like to lounge after a shower, then you certainly need something longer – a bath sheet. Some people may also find bath sheets unwieldy and heavy. If this is the case, then perhaps shop for more bath towels and maybe invest in just one premium bath sheet just in case you need it.

Whenever you can, shop for towels physically to check out how soft the material is. Of course, it’s impossible to check the absorbency of the towel in the store, but at least you will have the best idea of how soft and thick the material truly is. Remember the adage on thickness – the more material a towel or sheet has, the more absorbent it is.

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