In Towels, Bigger is Usually Better

For people who have a large amount of surface area relative to normal, such as tall people, fully drying off after getting one’s whole body wet (such as in a shower) can be a little challenging, since towels become less absorbent the more water that they hold. One solution to this is to get towels with more capacity to hold water, such as plusher towels. The problem there is that plush towels are not always absorbent. Some I’ve come across seem to be nearly water repellent.

One solution is to look to very high end towels, such as those made of bamboo rayon (rayon is basically a chemically spun cellulose fiber, so it’s what you might call a quasi-natural fiber). They’re soft and absorbent, but hard to find and expensive.

Then I discovered that the solution is to stop buying bath towels and to start buying “bath sheets”. They’re just big towels, but have a different name for some reason. These “bath sheets”, which I’ve bought and regularly use and like, measure 70 inches long by 35 inches wide, and they have plenty of capacity to hold water simply because they’re much larger, despite having an entirely ordinary amount of plushiness and absorbency. Ordinary “bath towels” tend to be around 54×30, which is only two thirds the surface area of the “bath sheet”. Put the other way, the “bath sheet” has 50% more surface area than the “bath towel”. That’s a lot of extra water it can hold while still feeling dry to the touch and thus drying one off quickly.

As a bonus, it’s also much easier to securely wrap a “bath sheet” around one’s waste even if one’s waste circumference doesn’t qualify one to be an underwear model.

I share this because it took me years to figure out that what I want are decent bath sheets instead of expensive, fancy towels, so I hope I can save you years to figure that out too. Unless you, dear reader, are on the smaller side, in which case “bath towels” probably serve you admirably, and this is only useful knowledge for giving gifts to those in your life who have more trouble getting things from tight places and fitting into airplane seats and the like.

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