You might think choosing a beach towel is a simple process. Just pick a fun design for you or the kids, an affordable price and you’re good to go, right? Not so fast. For the best possible beach experience, you want a towel that’s going to last and won’t leave you feeling damp while you’re soaking up the sun.
Does it Absorb Water?
Beach towels usually serve double duty—they’re necessary for drying off after a romp in the waves and also used as a barrier between you and the sand while you tan. A wet towel makes for an uncomfortable cushion and can attract sand like moths to a flame. You need something that dries quickly, so go with a cotton or terrycloth blend.
How Soft is It?
We’ve all experienced those towels from the supermarket that feel like a bag a needles poking into your back when you go to lie down. Cheap is great, but not if you need something to lie on for hours on end. Cotton and velour towels are some of the comfiest on the market and are great for the consummate sunbather.
Is it Big Enough?
Towels always seem to come in odd shapes in sizes. One might barely fit a small child while the next one on the rack looks like it was made for Andre the Giant. A width of 28” and length of around 60” is a good size to aim for and will fit your average beachgoer without problems. For those of you who climbed down from the beanstalk, a beach blanket might be more up your alley.
Thick or Thin?
A beach towel doesn’t have to be extra fluffy to be comfortable. In fact, a towel too thick could make your beach trip a pain in the rear. Look for a comfortable, soft fabric that’s thin enough to fold easily into a compact state. That way, you can stuff it in your beach bag without taking up too much room. It’ll also be easier to shake the sand off of when you’re ready to leave without so many loops to get stuck in.
Is it Affordable?
A beach towel shouldn’t break the bank. Anything under $10 will likely last two or three trips before you start to notice the wear and tear. Splurge a little and buy a towel you know will last at least through a season, if not longer. A $20 towel now will cost less than three $10 towels over the course of a couple years.
Does it Look Cool?
All right, this one is a little shallow. A beach towel has to look cool, or at least at home on a beach. It’s summer and you should go for bright colors. Not only do really dark colors like black or gray attract heat that could make your sunbathing experience pretty uncomfortable, but they look more at home on Game of Thrones than a sunny day on the sand.
Choose a cool beach-themed design or even go for something simple, but remember to keep it bright. It’ll also help you find it lying in the sand once you’ve drifted down shore thanks to some heavy waves.
Most importantly, just have fun when picking out your next beach towel while also aiming to get the best bang for your buck.