Terry towel buying guide:
In the (very old) below video we explain what to look for in Terry Towels.
Silk terry cloth has origins dating back to 1841 as it was first introduced in France. Seven years later in England, Samuel Holt became the first person to weave cotton into terry cloth. Then, in 1850, Henry Christy founded the Christy Company which became the first industrial manufacturer of terry cloth fabric and towels.
It is safe to say that the Christy Towel Company has learned quite a bit about towels over the last 150 years. They have established tremendous credibility and that is why we sell their incredible (terry) towels at Vero Linens.
The fiber that goes into the construction of a towel has a significant impact on a towel’s feel and performance.
Towels that are made of synthetics or a synthetic blend may feel soft, although they do a poor job of absorbing moisture when compared to a 100% cotton towel.
There are also differences among 100% cotton towels, as they have varying levels of softness, weight and absorbency. All cotton is not created equal and you can read more about that here.
Finer grades of cotton offer more capillarity or wicking properties, which makes for better absorbency. What happens is water is drawn away from your body into the narrow spaces between the fibers that are located at the core of the towel.
Finer grades of cotton also have thicker, more fibrous loops and will make a more durable and much softer towel.
- Terry is pile woven and contains multiple loops as pictured below.
- Both the quality and length of these loops will determine the amount of surface area of the towel. These loops play the part of tiny sponges that wick moisture. Long loops of at least two eighths of an inch are preferred. Christy towel loops are almost one-quarter inch long. A fabric with long loops can usually withstand twisting, pulling, tugging, and rubbing. This makes them both durable and absorbent.
- A good way to test the density of the fabric weave is to hold the towel up to the light and check to see how much light penetrates it. Less light means greater density.
- Towels are evaluated based on their weight per meter and they range in weights of 100 to as much as 800 grams per meter (GSM). We would not recommend purchasing or using any towels that are less than 450 GSM.
- Towels with a heavier weight may sound appealing. But remember that when a towel weave is too thick, it will feel more like a tightly woven oriental rug and also take a long time to dry.
- This means that a weave that is too tight will have a side surface of loops that become so densely packed so that only the tips of the loop come in contact with your skin. Consequently, the absorption benefits of these loops are never realized.
- A good range for a towel weight is between 650 to 700 GSM. Christy towels are 675 GSM.
- This is often a subjective area as many people believe that ultra-soft towels do not feel very good against their skin. Some very soft towels may seem as though they are not completely drying your skin and often leave a residue. As a result, many people prefer a towel with a soft, yet subtle scrubbing feel. Towels made from Bamboo or Micro Modal frequently receive these kinds of complaints.
When it’s time to purchase your next set of terry towels or fine bed linens, contact the professionals at Vero Linens. Our online showroom features a vast supply of luxury linens, Italian duvet covers and much more.
Watch a video how to care for Terry Bath Towels - here.