It’s beach season. Get a towel that will make your happy place even happier.

Okay, please tell me I’m not the only one who’s ever wondered what the difference is between a bath towel and a beach towel! Gladly, I now know the difference and I thought I’d share my new found wisdom with you all. So bath towels v. beach towels: what’s the difference?

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Looks Are Everything Right off the bat, you’ll probably notice that beach towels tend to be a lot more colorful and are bursting with pattern, unless you’re comparing that to some Missoni Home bath towels! Most bath towels are solid in color and don’t have a lot of, if any, pattern. This is mostly because while beach towels are seasonal, bath towels are used all year-round.

Through Thick & Thin There’s nothing more luxurious than a thick and fluffy bath towel, and it’s that plushness that’s going to help absorb all that water off you after your shower. Beach towels on the other hand are much thinner since they’re mostly there to keep the hot sand off your body while you’re sun bathing at the beach. This also helps them dry quicker out in the summer sun.

Size Matters The number one way to tell the difference between a bath towel and a beach towel? Just take a look at their size. If you were to hold a beach towel up to a bath towel you’ll see pretty quickly that beach towels are a lot longer than your standard bath towel. Dimension wise, if we’re going to get super technical here, bath towels range from 27 inches X 52 inches to 30 inches X 58 inches while your run of the mill beach towel is going to be about 40 inches X 70 inches!

Parting Thoughts Beach towels are much longer and thinner than their shorter and more absorbent bath towel counterparts. It’s probably best if you used separate towels for each occasion but I have to admit in my house sometimes I’m just happy if I can find a clean towel at all (especially during swim season).

Every summer I promise myself I’m going to invest in a nice, hip beach towel I can be proud of. For some reason, it always falls short on the long list of items to buy each season… so, I end up dragging out my touristy Hawaiian beach towel from my honeymoon years ago. It’s sort of shameful, really… it depicts a map of all of the islands with a geographical grid. As a tourist, maybe they think you’re going to get lost or maybe you forgot exactly where you decided to vacation and need a not so subtle reminder. Long story short, it’s horrendous and I dread pulling it out of my beach bag. This summer I finally rounded up a pretty amazing list of towels for the Interior Collective and am about to pull the trigger on one of my favorites. Feast your eyes on the coolest beach towels of summer…

The round beach towels have completely stolen my heart. I think they’re so much more practical, plus I love the unique shape… not to mention the tassle / fringe edge detail! I like to take up lots of space at the beach or pool. Sometimes I sit, listen to music, take my hat or headphones on and off… sit my book aside, etc. Basically I sort of like a lot of space and the round towels certainly are intriguing. The other towel I’m seriously eying is the typographic towel. There’s something about a reversible towel with a clean sans serif type that is really appealing to the print designer in me. That one would never go out of style. For all colors and over 40+ more towels, click over to read the full article!

Like most of us, the beginning of summer launches my annual hunt for fresh beachwear trends: from pretty swimsuits to hats that will adequately shield my snow-white face from the blazing sun. But this season, I’ve found myself excited about an unexpected, but irresistibly affordable way of pulling my coastal look together. In past years, beach towels were an afterthought (or more accurately, a non-thought), something I’d mindlessly pick up in a chain store before a seaside visit. Never before have there been so many incredible options available at our fingertips. On Society6 alone, I was able to find an endless array of inspiring designs to wrap myself in. From minimal patterns to colorful statements, there’s finally something for everyone.

A good beach towel is arguably the most underappreciated summer essential. Think of how miserable it would be to spend a day at the beach without one: sand would get into places you didn’t know existed, and when you attempt to wash it off in the water, you have to stand for 20 minutes drip drying before you can sit anywhere again.

There would be nowhere to set your bag, your sweaty water bottle would be covered in sand, and you’d have no soft place to lay down and get your tan on. Don’t take yours for granted. Make it easy on yourself and get one (or more) of the amazing styles that are offered this season.

The beach isn’t the only place to bring these beauties, though. Take them poolside, so you can avoid using the dreaded communal hotel or resort towels that offer no comfort (and just aren’t as cute). Or pack them on your next trip to the park and use them as a picnic blanket. If you are going house boating, sailing, canoeing, wakeboarding, jet skiing, or anything on the water, a great towel is key. With so many options, you won’t have difficulty finding a cute beach towel that suits you. There are all kinds of shapes, colors, textures, and details to choose from. Read on for our favorites.