Luxury bath towels are key to a stylish bathroom — here are 9 reviewed and recommended buys

Fluffy, fast-drying, and affordable

Best bath towels: mustard towels, grey towels
(Image credit: Future)

Buying new fluffy bath towels is a very simple upgrade to this small space that you probably spend a lot of time in — especially if you are like me and you love a long dip in the tub. Whether you've recently moved out of your parent's home or your bath towels aren't absorbing as much water as usual (this is a sign they need replacing), I can definitely help with this purchase.

I've been set the task of testing a bunch of bath towels (tough job, eh?) for their absorbency, their quality (just how well do they wash?), and also their look and feel. Whether you tend to go for a thicker towel or you prefer something lightweight, I've put some of the top-rated towels through their paces (that means using them over and over and washing them a bunch of times) so that you know which ones are worth your money. And if I've not had the chance to test them, you can bet I've only featured bath towels with really good reviews.

Spoiler alert: there are quite a few to choose from. So, we've rated each towel as being the best pick for something. Whether that's the best Amazon bath towel, the best eco-friendly bath towel, or even our Editor's favorite, they're all below.

Before you get into it, here are just a few things to look out for. We've listed the GSM of each towel, which means grams per square meter. The higher this number, the more absorbent (and normally thicker) the bath towel. When it comes to size, I'll always favor a bath sheet over a bath towel because they are so much bigger. But that does mean they are more money, so bear in mind your budget as you'll probably want to buy more than one of these towels. This leads me to the fact some come in a pair or in a bundle, with matching hand towels and more available. 

Once you've made your decision, we've got lots of towel storage ideas for you to check out if you'd like inspiration to display your new towels in style.

The best bath towels to buy, as tried and tested by Real Homes

Why you can trust Real Homes Our expert reviewers spend hours testing and comparing products and services so you can choose the best for you. Find out more about how we test.

What to consider when buying new bath towels?

1. Absorbency
Typically speaking, thicker is better, as it's easier to absorb more water than lighter, thinner towels; however, it's crucial to read reviews. Sometimes, thicker towels are prone to retaining water, meaning they're one-and-done, and you will have to repeatedly wash them, or worse, it doesn't get all of the water off of you.

2. Softness
A towel's plush factor is also extremely important; you don't want the material to be too hard or stiff, as that's the last thing that will feel comfortable on your body. Instead, gravitate toward cotton or linens to ensure the fluffiest, most comfortable towels. 

3. Weight
Another consideration is how much your towel may (or may not) weigh. Typically speaking, the higher the weight, the denser it is, meaning the more water it will absorb. Towels are measured in grams per square meter, with top-performing towels weighing anywhere from 500-700 GSM, heavy-weight towels from 600-900 GSM, and medium-range being 400-600 GSM. Anything lower than that is most likely not worth your time.

4. How do they wash?
First, consider how often to wash your towels (it's probably more than you think). Then, depending on how you like to wash your towels and bedding, whether hot or on an eco-cycle, it's always a good idea to check how the towels you've chosen can be washed. You don't want to accidentally damage your new towels after their first wash.

5. Colors
This factor isn't as important as the others, but it's always a good idea to choose a towel color that matches your bathroom, whether your fluffy new towels will be on display or hidden in a cabinet. White towels can be difficult to keep looking clean, especially if you often dye your hair or use fancy colored bath products, just something to keep in mind.

What are the specs that I need to know when shopping for bath towels?

When shopping for a new bath towel or two, there are a few technical terms that you might want to make yourself familiar with. In this guide, I've listed each towel's material, how many sizes it comes in plus the colors it is available in.

Here's any towel-related jargon you might need to know about when it comes to finding your dream bath towels.

  • GSM: Grams per square meter. The higher this number, the weightier the towel.
  • Combed cotton: This cotton is brushed to separate short fibers for a softer, more durable substance.
  • Twist: This term explains how much the loop's yarn is twisted. A good tip to remember the higher the twist, the more reliable and stable it will be (like GSM), but the lower it is the plusher and more drying it will be. 
  • Ring-spun cotton: This material is made from deep and tiny fibers that are tightly twisted, producing towel loops that are strong and smooth.

Real Homes review process

Where we can, we've actually used these towels in our own homes. I've (Annie) done the bulk of the towel testing, though I've solicited the help of a few of my team for the sake of my sanity (and my towel storage capacity). How do we test bath towels?

- By feel: How soft are they? Are they thick or thin? What's their quality like?
- By look: Do they have a design? Do they have a texture? Are they available in lots of colors?
- By washing: How well do they wash? Do they have to be tumble-dried?
- By size: Do they come in just a bath towel size or also a bath sheet, and maybe a hand towel?
- By extra features: Do they have a hanging hook? Are they fast-drying? How many washes do they last?

We will all use these towels and wash them around 10 times before making a final verdict. If we wouldn't keep them in our bathroom and use them every day, then we won't feature them in this guide. It's that simple.

So far, I've tested the number one pick in this guide, the Scooms Bath Sheet (opens in new tab), and I LOVE it. They are the softest towels I've ever used and they wash so well. Other than that, I've worked my way through our UK guide, testing countless different bath towels, but I've had to solicit the help of the team for the rest.

Meet our bath towel testers below:

Melissa Epifano headshot
Melissa Epifano

Our editor Melissa has taken a fancy to The White Company bath towels. In fact, the Rib Hydrocotton Towels (opens in new tab) now have a solid place in her main bathroom. While she initially bought them for guests, after pulling them out of the dryer post-visit (and trying them for herself), there was no going back. She's gone as far as kicking her bathrobe to the curb and only wrapping up in these after showering. They feel supremely soft and hold their warmth super well after hanging on a heating rack. The towels don't shed and their plush material doesn't feel thin or flimsy. Actually, after washing and drying them for months, they just seem to be getting fluffier.

Christina illustration
Christina Chrysostomou

Christina suffers from Keratosis Pilaris (aka chicken skin) and while she used to be ashamed to admit to having this skin condition, it's estimated one in four of us live with it. Because of this, she needs a super-soft towel when drying her body after a bath or shower. Enter the ESPA White Ribbed Towel (opens in new tab). Yes, it's absorbent, but the feather-light feel isn't abrasive against her sensitive skin. The matching ribbed bathrobe is on her Christmas wishlist if anyone's reading...

Annie Collyer
Head Ecommerce Editor

Hi! I'm Annie, and I'm the Head Ecommerce Editor at Real Homes. Along with my team, I'm here to review all of the products you might be considering buying for your home. As someone who lives in a flat with a small amount of storage space to work with, and with two indoor pets to clean up after, I am forever searching for stylish yet functional appliances that won't blemish my decor if I can't fit them in a cupboard. I love decorating my living room for each season, while my other hobbies include drinking a decent cup of coffee, going on park walks with my dog and enjoying an Instagrammable brunch with my husband.