One of the most important factors when buying a beach towel is the material. Customers usually confuse about which material to prefer; cotton or microfiber. Which one is better for you at the beach? Which one will last long? or which one is more absorbent?
Besides sunbathing and lounging, beach towels are a must-have for any water activity or sport i.e. swimming, surfing, paddle boarding, diving, kayaking, or even seaside camping and backpacking. That’s why choosing the best material for your beach towel is key to consider before making an actual purchase.
Let’s check the pros and cons of each material; cotton and microfiber for beach towels.
Cotton vs MicroFiber for Beach Towel
- Natural: Cotton is undoubtedly a great choice for sensitive skin people and baby skin, as it is a natural fiber material that is hypoallergenic.
- Ultra-absorbency: The natural cotton material is well-known for its super absorbency, softness, and comfortable feel.
- Durable and Long-lasting: Long-staple cotton and single-ply yarns tend to make strong and durable towels that can bear multiple washes with a smile.
- Plusher and Luxe: Terry loop cotton towels give you a thick, plush, and spa-luxurious feel.
- Breathable: Cotton is naturally a breathable material that feels airy and light.
- May Fade, Pill & Shrink: Cotton material in cheap quality may pill, shrink, or fade easily after a few washes.
- Bulky and Weighty: Regular thick cotton towels become weighty and bulky after getting wet or cold.
- Wrinkled Easily: If not properly folded and maintained, cotton material is more prone to wrinkles.
- Sand-Free: A cotton towel is a sand magnet because of its long fiber loops. Turkish Cotton Beach towels on the other hand are 100% sand-resistant.
- Musty odor and bacteria: Damp beach towels are a perfect ground for growing bacteria, mildew, and nasty smells that’s why it might be the case in having a thick cotton towel that requires more time to dry. On the other side, Turkish Cotton beach towels solve this issue by having thin, quick dry, and lightweight nature.
There are some excellent cotton beach towels that I shortlisted and reviewed for the top 10 best Turkish towels guide. It’s a must-read if you are planning to purchase one.
- Thin and Lightweight: Microfiber is famous for its thin and lightweight construction.
- Dries Quickly: They dry ⅓ of the time of thick cotton towels.
- Compact and Portable: Saves a quarter of space in your beach tote, suitcase, and closet as compared to standard terry cotton towels.
- Sand-Free: With just a strong flick, you end up having a completely sand-free beach towel.
- Low maintenance: Simply pop it into the washer without worrying about color bleeding, fading, or pilling.
- Wrinkle-resistant: Beachgoers get a perk by having an absolute wrinkle-free microfiber beach towel.
- Synthetic: Made from synthetic materials such as polyester, nylon, and cellulose (from wood pulp) that may be allergic to some and doesn’t recommend longer contact with skin.
- Moisture-Wicking: Microfiber is a moisture-wicking fabric that may leave a lingering feeling of wetness on the body.
- Static cling effect: You may not find it comfortable as it produces a clingy static effect.
- Not luxurious: Microfiber towels with their thin construction can’t give you a luxe and comfortable feel as compared to cotton ones.
- Not Durable: Comparably not much durable as cotton. Cheap quality microfiber may tear over time.
Choose Cotton Beach Towels If…
- You want thin, quick-drying, sand-free, and low-maintenance towels.
- You prefer a compact, lightweight, and wrinkle-resistant construction.
- You are a budget bee that is looking for a more affordable option.
Choose Microfiber Beach Towels If…
- You’re looking for a naturally breathable and airy towel that won’t trap heat.
- You have a baby to wrap or have sensitive skin and prefer hypoallergenic natural material.
- You love an ultra-absorbent beach towel that gives a plush, soft, luxe, and comfortable feel.
She started BeachXplore as a traveling blog covering particularly amazing beaches which she was lucky to visit and research about. Here you can find her writings on the best beaches, guides on beach wear, items, and more.