Nothing beats stepping out of a hot shower and wrapping yourself in a plush towel—but you might be surprised at just how complicated the choice of that towel can be!
In recent years, it’s become clear that most of us have strong preferences about the types and numbers of towels gracing our bathroom shelves, evidenced by a recent debate on the merits of a bath sheet vs bath towel. But if you aren’t sure how to find the perfect bath linens—or if you don’t know the difference between a bath towel and a bath sheet—we’ve got you covered.
Keep reading for an explanation of the merits of both options, plus a breakdown to help you choose the right one for your bathroom.
What Is a Bath Towel?
Bath towels are the most common form of bath linens, and the standard you’ll often see on most towel racks—to the point that most homes and hotels consider them a requirement! Here are a few things you should know about them:
Bath Towel Size
Sizes vary from manufacturer to manufacturer. Most consider the standard size to be anywhere from 25 to 31 inches wide by 52 to 58 inches long.
This standard size, plus their great range and absorbency, makes them ideal for most common purposes, from drying your body and hair to toweling off your children. In addition, those with smaller bathrooms and narrower storage spaces might find it easier to fit these common bath linens inside.
The Cost of Bath Towels
Due to their smaller size, bath towels will usually be less expensive than bath sheets. Of course, you can spend as much or as little as you want: budget options can be found for just a few dollars, while high-end towels can cost you upwards of $30-40 per piece. The price varies based on the textile used, the weight and plushness of the towel, and the construction and absorbency.
What Is a Bath Sheet?
Put simply, a bath sheet is a larger variation on the more common bath towel. You can think of it as a beach-sized towel that matches the rest of your towel set. Here are the details on the size and cost:
Bath Sheet Size
Just like the bath towel, the typical bath sheet size can vary in size. Bath sheets can range from 35 to 60 inches in width and 40 to 70 inches in length.
This more luxurious size makes bath towels perfect for people who hate having to move a smaller towel around to dry their whole body or those who walk out of the shower with a top and bottom towel.
In a pinch, a bath sheet can also take the place of a beach towel—which is worth noting if you live close to the shore!
Note, of course, that there are a few drawbacks to the larger size.
First, bath towels take up a little more space, especially high-quality options made from thicker fabrics. You may also find it difficult to fit them into smaller storage areas or even onto narrower towel racks.
In addition, the extra size means that you’ll have to wait longer if you tend to let your towels air-dry. It’s also worth noting that thicker bath linens aren’t as flexible as bath towels, making it more difficult to twist them around your hair.
The Cost of Bath Sheets
Bath sheet towels are pricier than their smaller cousins due to their larger size and, often, the better quality textiles used in manufacturing them. Like bath towels, the price can vary depending on the fiber makeup, construction, size, and more. The best bath sheets can cost well over $50, but you can find affordable bath sheets on sale for under $10 if you shop around.
Bath Sheet vs Bath Towel: Which Should You Buy?
Now that you know the main differences between bath sheets and bath towels, how can you tell which one is right for your needs? Because the size and costs are the major points to consider, these may be the deciding factors when making your choice.
However, there are a few other things you can keep in mind as you weigh both options—as long as you remember that in the debate over a bath sheet vs bath towel, it all comes down to preference!
If you have a smaller bathroom, a narrow towel rack, or less storage space, it may be difficult to find space for several large bath sheets. Instead, you may want to consider a set of bath towels for convenience.
Do you tend to let your hair sit in a towel to dry? If so, a bath towel may be best, as these options are easy to twist around your hair and won’t become too heavy after absorbing water.
Do you prefer to wrap your body in a towel while you dry your hair, shave, or put on makeup? Do you hate reaching for multiple towels to cover up? A bath sheet makes the job easier, and it provides more coverage when a smaller bath towel isn’t sufficient.
It’s worth considering any other people who will use the towel in your home.
If you live with your partner and both of you prefer larger bath linens, for example, the choice to opt for a bath sheet is an easy one. On the other hand, if you have younger children in your home, they may be swamped by the size of a large bath sheet.
Bath sheets also may not be ideal for older adults, as smaller-sized towels can be easier for frail arms to use.
Find the Perfect Bath Linens for Your Needs
In the choice between a bath sheet vs bath towel, it all comes down to your own needs and preferences. Whether you prefer the luxury of an oversized bath sheet or the convenience and flexibility of the standard bath towel, the right bath linens can make all the difference.
Of course, if you can’t decide, don’t forget that you can always treat yourself with a smaller set of both options for the perfect drying experience every time!
If you’re looking for more tips to help you make smart choices about where you’re putting your money, don’t forget to check out our other posts for additional insights.