What is a Pool Towel?

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  • Written By: Malcolm Tatum
  • Edited By: Bronwyn Harris
  • Last Modified Date: 25 February 2020
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Pool towels are oversized towels designed for use by the pool or lake. The typical pool towel will be thick and highly absorbent, soft to the touch, and large enough allow the user to completely wrap in the towel if necessary. Along with providing the ability to dry off after a dip in the pool, the pool towel is ideal for spreading over a chaise and settling in to enjoy the sun.

The choice of fiber for the pool towel is very similar to any type of linens used in the bathroom. Terrycloth is a common option, often relying heavily on natural fibers such as cotton. A small amount of synthetic fibers may be added to the blend of the towel material, in order to enhance the absorbent qualities of the towel. Depending on the thread count, the towel may be somewhat thin or very thick and luxurious.

Pool towels are easily one of the largest towel sizes available. These types of towels are often at least a long as the height of the average male, and normally wide enough to easily accommodate the shoulders of any adult. This makes the pool towel larger than standard size bath towels, including bath sheets.


As with most towels, the pool towel is manufactured in a number of color and pattern options. The towel may be a simple white towel, or sport any number of bright colors in a pattern. Typically, the nap on a pool towel will be even, although it is possible to find poolside towels with a waffled or sculpted design. However, most people prefer towels with an even nap, especially if they plan on lying on the towels while enjoying the fresh air and sunshine.

Caring for a pool towel is no different than maintaining bath towels. By washing and thoroughly drying the towels, the nap and texture of the material will hold up well to use over a number of years. No special detergents are required for towels of this type, although the addition of fabric softener and drying on a lower heat setting is often recommended.

Not all retail outlets that carry towels for indoor use will also carry pool towels. Often, towels of this type can be found at sporting goods stores, or retail establishments that carry pool accessories. Because of the larger size, a pool towel is generally more expensive than even a large bath towel. However, there are a number of companies that produce inexpensive pool towels that are ideal for children and teenagers, as well as people who must buy textile products on a tight budget.


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