Standard Towel Sizes for Every Room & Purpose

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standard towel sizes

When choosing towels, size is an important factor to consider. Not only do different sizes serve different purposes, but they also take up different amounts of space in your linen closet or on your towel rack. Thankfully there are standard towel sizes we can rely on to plan our organizational scheme.

Here is a breakdown of the most common towel sizes and their intended uses.

How Many Different Towel Sizes Are There?

There are several sizes of towels, but the most common are washcloths, hand towels, and bath towels. Each of these three sizes is good for different tasks in the bathroom, like washing or drying.

Towel sets typically consist of a bath towel, a hand towel, and a washcloth (or two of each). There are a variety of towel sizes available, but the three sizes listed above are the most common ones used in public and private restrooms.

What Are the Most Common Towel Sizes?

what are the most common sizes of towels?

There are many different sizes of towels available to suit various needs. There is a towel size for every purpose, from small washcloths to large beach towels. When choosing towel sizes, it's important to think about what your family needs so that you have the right size for each job.

Overall, the size of the towel you choose will depend on your needs and preferences. Whether you need something small and practical for daily use or something larger and more luxurious for special occasions, there is a towel size to suit your needs.

Here are some of the most common sizes, which almost reads like a list of types of towels since that's how they're categorized:


These small towels are typically about 12 inches by 12 inches and are used for washing your face, hands, and other small areas. They are also great for exfoliating the skin. I've not once in my life seen one that doesn't follow the standard towel sizes for washcloths, but be careful nonetheless.

Fingertip Towels

These towels are slightly larger than washcloths and are typically used to dry your hands after washing. They are often found in guest bathrooms or hotel rooms. They are typically about 16 inches by 30 inches.

Hand Towels

Hand towels are larger than fingertip towels and are typically used for drying your hands after washing them. They are usually about 16 inches by 30 inches in size.

Bath Mats

towel dimensions for bath mats varies in comparison to regular towels

Bath mats dry off your feet after showering or bathing. They are typically made of absorbent materials like cotton or microfiber and placed on the floor outside the shower or bathtub. They provide a non-slip surface for you to step on after showering or bathing. They are typically about 20 inches by 30 inches.

Bath Towels

Bath towels are larger than hand towels and are used to dry your body after showering or bathing. These towel dimensions are typically about 27 inches by 52 inches in size.

Gym Towels

Gym towels are smaller than bath towels and are designed to be used for wiping sweat off your face and body during a workout. They are often made of a quick-drying material like microfiber. They are typically about 16 inches by 32 inches.

Bath Sheets

This type of towel is even larger than bath towels and is typically used for wrapping your body after showering or bathing. They are usually about 35 inches by 60 inches in size.

Beach Towels

Of all the different towel sizes, these are easily the largest. Beach towels are usually big and rectangular, and they are made to be used on the beach or by the pool. They are often made of absorbent materials like cotton or microfiber and are used for drying off after swimming or sunbathing. These towel measurements are typically about 30 inches by 60 inches.

Things to Consider When Choosing Towels

there are some things to consider when choosing towels other than towel measurements

When choosing towels, there are a few things you might want to consider beyond just the standard towel sizes:


Towels are made from various materials, including cotton, linen, microfiber, and bamboo. Consider which material best suits your needs, such as absorbency, durability, softness, and allergy-friendliness. Each type of material has unique properties and benefits, so you'll want to choose a towel that suits your needs.


Some towels are more absorbent than others, so you'll want to consider how much water your towel needs to hold. For example, if you're using a towel to dry off after a shower, you'll want a highly absorbent towel.


As mentioned above, towels come in various sizes, so you'll want to choose one that is appropriate for the task. For example, if you're using a towel to dry off after a shower, you'll want a larger towel like a bath towel or bath sheet.

Color & Pattern

color, pattern, and different towel sizes

Towels are available in various patterns and colors to suit different tastes and decor styles. Consider the color scheme of your bathroom and choose towels that complement or match your other bathroom accessories.


Towels can vary widely depending on the material, size, and brand. Consider your budget and choose towels that are within your price range.


Some brands are known for their high-quality towels, while others are more budget-friendly but have less durability over time and over washes. Consider the reputation of the brand and read reviews before making a purchase.


What will you be using the towel for? A hand towel will be smaller than a bath towel, for example. You can already see that the standard towel sizes are created to aid in a specific purpose for the towel. Some towels are meant for light use and are mainly there for decoration. Others are expected to be used quite a bit.


Think about how much space you have to store your towels. If you have limited space, choose a smaller size.If you have giant wet towels in a small bathroom, things can get tricky. So definitely consider your toilet room dimensions and how much wall space you have to hang towel racks or shelves to lay folded towels.


Choose towels that are made of high-quality materials and are built to last. Cheaper towels will become discolored over time, have their knitting and threading come apart, etc. This may be preferable to you if you like to change colors occasionally.

Care Instructions

Ensure you can care for the towels properly by following the recommended washing and drying instructions. You can find these instructions on the tag sewn into the backside of the towel.

Frequently Asked Questions Regarding Towels

we have covered up basic details on standard towel sizes, here are some other frequenlty asked questions regarding towels

These are some frequently asked questions people have about towels past just the standard towel sizes that you may be wondering about, too.

How Often Should I Wash My Towels?

It is recommended to wash bath towels every three to four uses, hand towels every one to two uses, and washcloths every one to three uses. However, if a towel becomes heavily soiled or has a strong odor, it should be washed immediately. If a towel is used to dry off after swimming or sweating, it should be washed after each use. To keep bacteria and germs from spreading, it is also important to wash towels separately from other clothes.

How Should I Care for My Towels?

If you want your towels to last longer, try not to use fabric softeners when you wash them. Fabric softeners coat the fibers of the towel, making them less absorbent. Instead, use a mild detergent and wash the towels in warm water. When drying your towels, avoid using high heat, as this can cause the fibers to break down over time.

Can I Use a Bath Towel for a Beach Towel?

Yes, you can use a bath towel as a beach towel. But beach towels are usually bigger and more absorbent than bath towels, so if you plan to use them a lot at the beach, you might want to buy one made for that purpose. Beach towels also tend to be more durable and able to withstand the sand and sun, which may be harsher on a regular bath towel.

Is There a Difference Between a Hand Towel & a Tea Towel?

Yes, there is a difference between a hand towel and a tea towel. Both range in size from 16″ x 28″ to 18″ x 30″.

A hand towel is a small towel typically used to dry hands after washing them in a bathroom. It is usually hung near a sink or in a bathroom. They’re more absorbent and often made of terrycloth.

A tea towel is a cotton or linen towel used to dry dishes and clean surfaces in the kitchen. They are often used to cover baked goods as they cool.

Is it Necessary to Have Matching Towels in the Bathroom?

It is not necessary to have matching towels in a bathroom. Some people prefer to have matching towels for aesthetic purposes, while others do not care as much about the appearance of their towels and choose to use various colors and patterns. Ultimately, it is a matter of personal preference.

Standard Towel Sizes & Dimensions Per Type

When choosing towels, consider the size that best fits your needs and the space you have available for storage. It is also essential to consider the towel's material, how well it absorbs water, and any features you might want, like a decorative border or a loop for hanging.

You can find the perfect towels for your home with a bit of research, and you can rely on them all being the same size since each of the types do follow standard towel sizes.

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