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Bathroom Redux: Bath Sheet Vs. Bath Towel

How to look for the best bath sheet, bath towel and beyond. You’ll never look at your linen closet the same way again after.
Roxanne Robinson Feb 19, 2021
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To bath sheet or not to bath sheet? That was the burning question blowing up on Twitter last year when Twitter personality and New York magazine and Huffington Post contributor Yashar Ali suggested the catalog of towels a couple should own. His mention of Bath Sheet got the internet buzzing with questions of what it was for some and its purpose for others. An article in House Beautiful broke down the playful squabble that even included weighing in on the debate with a cheeky answer.

What Is The Difference Between Bath Sheet and Bath Towel?

But the debate on which is better boils down to personal preference and possibly bath storage space. A standard size bath towel typically measures anywhere from 25" to 31" wide by 52" to 58" long while the newer bath sheet starts at 35" up to about 40" wide and length can range from 60" to 70" long. While the measurements are in line with a beach towel, beach towels typically tend to be designed with vibrant motifs geared to fun in the sun, sand, and pool with close-cropped or smooth velour terry for easy transport and drying abilities. Bath sheets are generally more spartan in design and fluffier pile depth to be extra absorbent post-shower.

A traditionalist may find all that extra cotton cumbersome when exiting the shower or bath while others love to "burrito" themselves in a large bath towel and promptly dive back into bed. Warning: Those with a tendency to be late should avoid a morning shower ending in a bath sheet wrap! Space can be a consideration too, as a bath sheet takes up more linen closet shelf room. A heated drying rack or otherwise dry bathroom environment is suggested when using a bath sheet as the extra cotton tends to take longer to dry and, therefore, be prone to a mildew odor.

Skin-Friendly Bath Towels, Bath Sheets, And More

But size isn't the only consideration. How these towels affect our skin is also crucial. Dermatologist Dr. Robert Anolik of the Laser & Skin Surgery Center of New York stresses that more than size, whether a towel is clean and soft, is essential for our towels used on the face and body.

A towel suite is made up of washcloths, hand towels, bath towels or sheets, and a bathmat. But now there is, even more, to choose from to round out towel offerings. The category is further defined by various face and hair towels to meet particular needs when cleansing one's face or drying their hair.

Dr. Macrene Alexiades has an MD, a Ph.D., and a FAAD. (Her multiple degrees come from Harvard University, and her certifications are recognized in both the U.S. and Europe.) Dr. Macrene's work and subsequent discoveries have led to developing her skincare line, a passion she takes very seriously. When it comes to towels, the doctor's orders are precise. She attributes her particular taste in towels to her Virgo astrology sign.

On her face, she chooses white unbleached linen towels. "I found some organic ones in Ireland during a trip last year that I love." She advises putting on moisturizers such as the Macrene Actives high-performance cream. On her body, her preference is a heavyweight organic Egyptian cotton towel from Under the Canopy. On her hair, she uses lightweight organic cotton towels from Coyuchi that take a lot of the excess water out before using a hairdryer. "On her body, her preference is a heavyweight organic Egyptian cotton towel from Under the Canopy organic bath mat for Christmas, and it is the best bath mat I have ever used!

More Face-Friendly Towels

There are plenty of hair and face towels to meet a span of needs. Tatcha silk face washcloths were the answer to founder Victoria Tsai's issue with acute dermatitis. The line of skincare products and silk washcloths work in combination to nourish and exfoliate skin at the same time. Adorabellababy offers raw silk washcloths that are hypoallergenic, aid in anti-aging, and have antimicrobial properties. Lightweight cotton muslin facial washcloths quickly dry, so they are not prone to bacteria, while face cloths made from bamboo are naturally antibacterial and antifungal.

Konjac root cleansing sponges take the place of facial wash clothes to exfoliate and promote a clear complexion, especially when paired with clay, it combats blemish-prone skin. Face scrub towels combined with activated charcoal naturally absorb impurities from pores. Microfiber facial washcloths use only water to remove makeup, including waterproof mascara.

Microfibers come in handy for hair towels, too, which are super absorbent. Large full-size towels tend to be hard to balance or keep on one's head long enough to dry hair and still move from place to place. Anti-frizz microfibers exist for those trying to combat flyaways. For even more hands-free hair drying, Aquis makes a microfiber hair turban and ultra-absorbent fast-drying waffle weave. Bamboo towels, with their naturally anti-fungal properties, are also keen for drying hair too.

Roxanne Robinson
Roxanne Robinson is an award-winning Paris-based American journalist covering luxury and fashion industries with over 25 years of experience. I spent over 18 years at WWD, covering sportswear, accessories and fine jewelry. My career witnessed the shift from print media to the digital age. I gained expert knowledge of the design world, wholesale and retail markets as well as the marketing that supports them. I met endless creatives and business people who create luxury from inception to POS with the consumer. My work has appeared in, BoF, The Hollywood Reporter,, The Jewelry Journal as well in-house publications and websites at Bally, Pomellato, Au Depart and among others.
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