If drying off quickly, looking good, and feeling comfortable while lounging on the beach is important to you, then choosing the best beach towels is a decision you should make carefully.
It may seem a simple decision, but so many people make the wrong choice when choosing towels for the beach.
If paddleboarding is your thing, fast-drying and style are likely to be important to you. While those wanting to chill out around the pool may prefer a cotton beach towel. Whichever style you prefer, we’ve picked out the best beach towels for every situation.
You have a lot to think about before purchasing a beach towel. From material and weight to size and design, all these matter when purchasing a beach towel
Cotton, linen, or microfiber? The material the towel is made from affects the overall performance of the towel:
The traditional fiber content of beach towels is plush cotton. However, new materials have been introduced to the market to provide sand-free and quick-drying qualities. Microfiber for example is a synthetic fiber made up of polyester, nylon, and other polyamides.
The quality and construction of the towel are important. You don’t want your beach towel to fall apart at the seams the first time you use it. Equally, you need it to be flexible, absorbent, and durable.
As with most things, expensive usually means better quality. However, this doesn’t mean great budget options aren’t available.
Do you plan to travel? If so, you’ll want something lightweight and easy to carry. We recommend a lightweight microfiber option so it can dry faster.
If you’re having a staycation by the pool, or the beach is close to home, the weight of the towel is something you may consider less important compared to other features.
Size may seem trivial, but you’ll be grateful you considered it when getting out of the water on colder days. There are some really large absorbent towels up for grabs, big enough to dry the whole family measuring over 70 x 70 inches!
But remember, when traveling, smaller options are preferable and work best for saving space. You need to figure out what size is best for you.
Round towel or blanket? Maybe the elegant style of Turkish Towels? Design can mean a lot, not only for style but also practicality.
If you’re a winter paddle boarder, then you will need something a little more than a simple bath towel. This as well as other essential SUP clothing is a must-have accessory while out on the water.
Sand Cloud Towels — Our best overall pick. The Sand Cloud towels are sand resistant, fast-drying, and lightweight — what more can you want from a towel? This beach towel is perfect for travelers to take to the pool, the lake, and the beach.
From the material used to the business environmental ethos, these towels are by far one of the best you can buy. No wonder we chose Sand Cloud Towels as our best overall pick.
The overall runner up has to be the Dock & Bay Quick-Dry Beach Towel. It dries quickly and is perfect to pack away for any vacation. We recommend this towel for those visiting warmer climates.
Dock & Bay towels are made from some of the best microfiber materials available, keeping the sand away and being soft on your skin.
Pool, beach, or gym? This Akumal microfiber towel from WildHorn is versatile to keep up with the busiest lifestyles with quick-drying a stand out feature. This is a great option for travel lovers.
Both the super large size and portability of this WildHorn beach towel makes it stand out from the rest.
Here we have an excellent microfiber towel that’s sure to meet expectations. The towel comes in a retro cabana design only, so if that fits your flair and style — this is the beach towel for you.
Your Choice (manufacturer) has used a ‘cationic’ technology to provide better absorbent qualities to their beach towels.
Rainleaf’s Microfiber Beach Towel is bold and does a great job. The absorbance is fantastic, and it keeps the sand off at all times, making it ideal for the beach.
If you want to make a statement and stand out on the beach then this Rainleaf beach towel is for you.
The Ricdecor Round Blanket is perfect for a day spent on the beach, and a great budget option that comes with a carry bag for easy traveling.
While the material is durable, unfortunately, the colors aren’t. Overall, this towel from Ricdecor does a good job considering the cheap price you pay for it.
BEARZ offers a twin pack of microfiber towels, which is obviously, great value for money. This makes a great choice for backpacking, as you can keep your beach towel and face towel separate.
This is a good cheap option that would suit travelers and backpackers who are planning to be on the road.
This Luxe Microfiber Towel from Packtowl offers the same softness as a traditional cotton towel but maintains all the desired qualities of the microfiber range.
The thicker material gives a fluffy finish, ideal for those looking for a piece of luxury for their traveling adventures.
Below is a selection of beach towels for those who want good value for money. All the towels listed in this section are budget friendly.
Made from 100% cotton, this 4-pack of Cabana Stripe Beach Towels from Utopia is a great value pack for those on a low budget. The assortment of colors will make it easier for the whole family to choose their towel for the beach.
We can look past the durability when we see the extremely low price for a 4-pack of beach towels.
Another cabana striped beach towel direct from Amazon Basics. This is a great option for anyone on a tight budget who wants to buy a simple towel for the pool or beach.
While the quality may not be the best, you can’t complain about the price being so low.
This beach towel from Land’s End is made with shooter loops to combat snagging and enhance durability. If you’re searching for the most comfortable towel but still on a budget, then this would be a solid choice.
The large size and cotton material will make this a difficult towel to pack when wanting to travel lightly, so perhaps sticking poolside is a good idea with this one
This section is for those who don't have a budget, and you simply want luxury at any cost.
The Laguna Beach Textile Co. offers classic Californian vibes in each of their beach towels. Thicker, softer, and more absorbent than most towels — this is a premium beach towel for those who like a touch of luxury.
If style and branding are important to you, then the Laguna Beach Textile Co. range is a good option.
Benevolence’s Mexican Falsa is the perfect choice for beach lovers extending their day into the night. Enjoy a campfire and marshmallows under starlight while using the beach blanket for extra warmth during the night.
Many things to like about this awesome towel. It can be used as a picnic blanket, yoga mat, and a general throw over.
Another microfiber towel, but Genovega has given this one a touch of luxury with the enormous size and double-sided pattern. This is a perfect choice for families or someone who wants some extra space.
Earn a few extra street-cred points by adding this bohemian style towel to your beach day gear. This is great for the beach and makes a statement.
Turkish towels are well known for the quality they provide. This section offers some of the most trendy and unique designs.
If you’re looking for an environmentally friendly option, then you can’t go wrong with this Turkish towel from Nature Is Gift. Take this lightweight and multipurpose towel anywhere while enjoying the soft luxurious feel on your skin.
Overall, this is a great Turkish towel option that is bound to please anyone who chooses it.
Mebien’s Turkish Towel is classy, stylish, and ideal for a chilled day out on the beach. The super-soft finish feels amazing on your skin after a dip in the water, and it looks great at the same time.
It’s easy to understand why we chose this Turkish towel as our most stylish option. Nature Is Gift towels are a thing of beauty with the bonus of being suitable for multiple uses.
Like to turn heads? This is were you will find a selection of towels that make a loud statement.
Are you looking for something to make a statement on the beach? This oversized beach towel from Pendleton ticks that box. With the vibrant Native-American design, you’re sure to catch staring eyes and make a bold impact when you roll this out on the beach.
The pattern choices alone make this an excellent choice of a beach towel. Bold, unique, and hard not to make a statement with this beautiful towel.
NFL lover? Show your colors off with pride. The Northwest Company is the leading manufacturer of branded textiles in the US and these towels do make a statement.
So why not sport your team colors with pride this summer and hit the beach with a statement.
Be seen with this beautiful flamingo inspired beach towel. The tropical design and bright colors will bring the heat to the beach this summer. Oversized, unique, and perfect for two people to share.
The unique Flamingo design and fairly large size make this a great addition for almost anyone. If you want to stand out on the beach this summer, then this will do that for you.
Most towels are designed for one person use only. However, sometimes a towel that's suitable for the whole family is needed. Below is few options that we recommend.
This spacious beach towel offers enough cover for the whole family. Made from microfiber materials, quick-drying, and does not allow sand to stick to it. This is perfect for young kids getting in and out of the water all day long.
Overall, this family-friendly beach towel is easy to travel with and perfect for a full day on the beach, by the pool, or in a park.
Partner this huge parachute-style beach blanket with a beach canopy for the ultimate set up. The whole family will be able to fit on this beach towel and enjoy an escape from the sand in between swimming in the water.
WildHorn Outfitters has raised the bar for amazing family-friendly beach towels. This will be sure to exceed your expectations.
This hooded towel is one of the best beach towels for kids and will go down a treat with them. Choose from a shark, jellyfish, llama, mermaid, and more. Stephen Joseph has partnered imaginative design with practicality perfectly.
All in all, this is a great option if you have young children joining your beach day activities.
Want something that acts like a towel, but also offers protection from the cold weather? Have a look at the dry-robe below.
Not strictly a beach towel, but still worthy of a special mention — DryRobe range are superb for outdoor lovers in cooler climates. They double up as a changing range and are super warm after a cold dip in the water.
The outside of the robe is fully waterproof. You can put the nylon side down on the sand without getting cold and wet on those Fall and Winter days.
A bath towel tends to be plusher and fluffier than a beach towel. This difference in thickness means that sand doesn’t stick to a beach towel as much as it would to a bath towel. Microfiber towels are common favorites for travelers as they dry fast and don’t hold on to the sand, however, the absorbency level doesn’t make them a preferred bath towel.
You can find good deals on beach towels online at stores like Amazon. Tourist destinations will also have stores close to the beach selling them if you forgot to pack one, although they tend to be more expensive than online shops.
The average weight of a beach towel is anything between 12 and 15 lbs. Microfiber towels are generally the lightest. Whereas a more expensive and luxurious beach towel can be up to, or over, 16 lbs, depending on their material and thread count.
Beach towels aren’t waterproof but water absorbent. This means they soak up the water from your skin and swimwear, allowing you to dry off quickly. Some products have a waterproof under layer allowing you to place the towel down without it absorbing moisture from the ground.
You’re best to wash a beach towel regularly to avoid mildew build-up. If you’re using it at the pool with chlorinated water then you should try to rinse off the chlorine every day to avoid color fading.
Microfiber towels are excellent for beach days as they wick away water, dry fast, and keep the sand off. They’re also lightweight which is great for traveling. You can find some large-sized microfiber towels which are the preferred choice for the beach.
Our GILI top pick for the best sand free towel is the Dock & Bay Quick-Dry Beach Towel. The sand-resistant quality and overall finish are fantastic and a great choice for any outdoor lover.
The best beach towels, according to beach lovers and enthusiasts, are extra large and absorbent, like the range from Sand Cloud or WildHorn. Microfiber towels are considered the best for those traveling. While towels with a hood are great for adventure seekers and winter climates.
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