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    The Best Towels That Make Bath Time Even More Fun

    Who wants a big 'ol cottony hug?

    We hope you love the products we recommend! All of them were independently selected by our editors. Just so you know, BuzzFeed may collect a share of sales or other compensation from the links on this page if you decide to shop from them. Oh, and FYI — prices are accurate and items in stock as of time of publication.

    Bath towels get more skin contact than a nudist at a cuddle party. Investing in the right ones will make your butt and your bathroom extremely happy. Whether your budget is thick or thin, we've found the best bath towels for your buck.

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    Editor's Note: We're currently updating these picks! Check back soon for more.

    AmazonBasics Quick-Dry Towel

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    If you’re looking for a towel that’s low-lint, high-durability, decently soft, quick-drying, high-absorbency, and fade-resistant...well, you’ll need to pay a little extra to get all those things. Cheap towels are almost always linty, especially after the first few washes, so we suggest washing in hot water and drying them alone until the fibers have shed their winter coats, so to speak. And while some are fairly fade-resistant over time, there are a lot of cosmetic and household chemicals that can discolor even (and maybe especially) expensive towels. But with all that in mind, these AmazonBasics Quick-Drying Towels get a whole lot of things right, and that’s why they’re our low-budget pick.

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    These towels are designed to be quick-drying AND absorbent, which is hard to do. They’re zero-twist, which means the 100% cotton fibers used to manufacture them are stronger and the surface area of the yarn is more open, which makes the material more absorbent and soft but also allows it to dry more quickly. Zero-twist only works if the cotton is high-quality, so that makes these even more of a bargain.

    The weight of a towel is measured in GSM, or grams per square meter. The higher the GSM, the denser the threads. While a higher GSM doesn’t always mean the towel is softer, more absorbent, or even physically thicker, it does usually correspond with price. The higher the GSM, the more expensive (sort of like thread count for sheets). AmazonBasics Quick-Dry Towels are 400 GSM, which makes them lightweight to medium-weight towels. Medium-weight towels are usually as absorbent as heavier weights (700 GSM or more) when made from 100% cotton, but they’re lighter and they dry faster, which is great for small or poorly ventilated bathrooms — or people who just leave towels lying around the house (no shame, just being real). These are also great for pets and other creatures that get gross and smelly, since they're cheap enough to replace now and again.

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    You’ll notice something that all three of our bath towel picks have in common: They all have only a thin border hem, rather than a thick striped border a few inches up from the edge. We’re against those borders for several reasons. One, if the towel shrinks, or is wrinkled, the border gets misshapen easily and starts to look wonky. And two, they are never soft, and it always seems to show up just where you want to dry your face or other sensitive parts. They also make the towels harder to display on hooks. Overall, we’re just anti-borders over here at BuzzFeed Reviews — especially on towels and washcloths — and this AmazonBasics set has a nice waffled border that doesn’t get in the way.

    We also didn’t pick any towels that come in sets (besides this one, which comes with a washcloth and hand towel). A very valuable thing we learned in the course of testing for this review is that the only thing more annoying than not having enough towels is having too many! Storing more towels than you have room for in your home is a huge pain, so while there are some good quality towels that come in sets of four (especially this Turkish set that’s only $6+ per towel), being able to get the right number for your household is key.

    These AmazonBasics towels are also made in an Oeko-Tex Standard 100 factory, an independent certification program that tests household fabrics and materials for more than 300 known harmful substances — though the towels themselves are not Oeko-Tex Standard 100-certified (likely because they’re a private-label brand from Amazon and they didn’t apply for the recognition).

    Among the other cheap towels we tried, these were the best overall in terms of quality, design, colorways, dry time, and absorbency. Durability and softness vary depending on your use and laundering techniques, but at $12.99 for a set, we think it’s the best budget version you’re gonna find.

    Get it from Amazon for $13.

    Editor’s note: In the course of writing this review, our number one favorite GOAT cheap towel from Target, the Fieldcrest Luxury, was discontinued and replaced with the Fieldcrest Spa Solid. Which is just okay. It’s as good as any other Target towel, which is to say it is soft and seems to be durable for the price and comes in great colorways. But there are a few things that differentiate it from the Luxury Solid that made us hesitant to fully switch loyalties: It’s not benzoyl peroxide-resistant or fade-resistant (and we haven’t yet found another on the market that actually makes that claim). The border is a different design, which makes it wrinkle/shrink easier. And it’s almost TOO soft, if you know what we’re saying. Something about it made us kind of suspicious, and it doesn’t dry quite as well on the floor of a teen’s room or in a windowless bathroom. And maybe we’re resistant to change or too attached to the old ones, but the Spa Solid is still a solid choice, if you will. You won’t go wrong with that one. But it’s just not our FAVORITE in the same way the Luxury Solid was. Amazon Basics Quick-Dry is the new king in town.

    Snowe Classic Bath Towel

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    Most towels either get less-soft after washing, or at best stay the same amount soft. These Snowe bath towels actually get SOFTER over time, which is one of the reasons they're our $$ pick. They've got a slightly fancier design than our low-budget pick, with a minimalist banding that prevents fray and a thicker look and feel. 

    Snowe is a direct-to-consumer brand that specializes in simple, high-quality products for kitchen, bed, bath, and bar that are reasonably priced. Like similar millennial-focused bed & bath startups like Parachute and Boll & Branch, Snowe's inventory is all neutral colors and minimalist designs that are popular among the Instagram-influencer set and their followers. But compared to those brands and others in a similar $20-40 per-towel price point, the Snowe towels were the softest and dried the most quickly.  They’re also the perfect “goldilocks” weight: not too heavy, not too light...just right.

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    Cotton Fact: you've probably heard terms like "Egyptian Cotton" and "Pima Cotton" used to indicate high-quality. But most of those terms are actually brand or region-specific terms for different kinds of long-staple cotton. Long-staple, or long-fiber, cotton, is harder to grow but often results in higher-quality textiles. In this case, size does matter: towels and sheets made with long-staple cotton tend to fray, pill, and wear less. Think of it like rope: one super long rope is a lot stronger than several shorter ropes tied together.

    Snowe towels are made with 100% long-staple cotton, which is probably why they are so soft and durable. Like our $ pick the Fieldcrest Luxury, these Snowe Towels are also OEKO-TEX® Standard 100 certified, and free from more than 300 known harmful substances.

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    At $30 each, and a lot more budget-friendly than our $$$ pick, but still a nice upgrade option. We think they’re perfect for a first apartment out of college or a wedding registry, or anyone who is willing to spend a little extra to get a more luxe bathing experience. They also have a 90-day money-back guarantee if you're not into them, which you don't see often for things that you rub all over your butt. 

    Get it from Stowe for $30.

    RH Ultra-Soft Turkish Towel

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    This towel is almost too luxurious to function. But it does function, extremely well, and better than some of the pricier luxury towels we tried. The main reason we chose this as our $$$ Worth It winner is that it’s EXTREMELY FREAKING SOFT AND CUSHY, even after many, many washes, and it’s also one of the most absorbent towels we’ve ever tried. Most luxury towels just have one of the other: the Matouk Lotus is slightly softer, but nowhere near as absorbent; the Coyuchi Cloud Loom is more absorbent at 1200 GSM, but not quite as soft and a lot thinner.

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    At 750 GSM, the Restoration Hardware Ultra Soft Turkish Towel is technically a heavy-weight but its somehow lighter than a lot of the other luxury brands, even when damp, and also thicker. It takes longer to dry than our other picks, but prety much all extremely absorbent towels do. 

    One thing to note is that since they are higher-end materials, these towels are also higher-maintenance than our other selections. They fare best when washed with like colors and no fabric softeners or harsh chemicals, and unlike our $ pick, the Fieldcrest Luxury from Target, these are not benzoyl peroxide-resistant, and tend to fade slightly more over time. Because of all that, we recommend getting this version in solid white. But let’s be honest: if you’re looking for hotel/spa-level-luxury, you’re probably going to get the white towels anyway. Pair them with these bath slippers and you’ll never leave your porcelain palace again.

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    And again: They’re just so soft. And thick. And thirsty...and yes, we’re still talking about a bath towel.

    Get it from Restoration Hardware for $45.