No products in the cart.
Bath Towels GSM—What Does it Mean and Does it Matter?
Bath Towels GSM—What Does it Mean and Does it Matter?
Looking for a towel but feeling overwhelmed by all the jargon? A towel’s job is pretty simple, so does it really matter what your towel is made of? Or what GSM (whatever that may be) it is?
To a large extent, all the ‘jargon’ does matter. At Comfy, we believe a towel is not ‘just’ a towel. It’s how you can bring luxurious living straight into your own home and have a spa experience each time you get out of the shower.
And the right GSM can help you optimise that experience.
GSM stands for ‘grams per square meter’. Simply put it tells you the weight of your bath towels, but that gives you a clear indication of many characteristics of that product:
- The density
- How luxurious it will feel
- Its softness level
- The absorbency
- How plush and thick you can expect the towel to be
- The wash routine you’ll follow to clean the towels since a high GSM towel can get quite heavy when wet
Where Does GSM Come From?
Firstly, GSM applies to towels made from cotton or bamboo, not just any type of fabric.
When linen retailers mention GSM in towel descriptions, they’re using an industry standard. This makes it easy for anyone to easily gauge the quality of a GSM-rated towel, no matter who the manufacturer or seller is.
To obtain this rating, manufacturers weigh a meter of a specific fabric and that measurement in grams determines what GSM category it falls into.
Is GSM Important?
The short answer is yes. GSM is important when shopping for home towels.
Of course, there are multiple features of a towel that will determine how well it serves its purpose. For example, the quality of your towel will also be affected by the type of cotton manufacturers used to produce the fabric. Still, GSM is a good starting point to gauge a towel’s general quality and whether you’re getting value for money.
GSM Range—A Complete Guide
When you’re shopping for bath towels and related products like bath mats, you’ll see products’ GSM will usually fall between 200gsm and 900gsm. Of course, the higher it gets, the softer your towel will be and the more liquid it will be able to absorb.
But, each category has its advantages and a higher GSM isn’t always the best alternative for you.
So bigger numbers aren’t always better? Surprised?
To clarify, here’s what you can expect from towel fabrics in different categories.
200 – 400 GSM
Towels in this category are thinner but that also means less bulky, which means easier to carry around.
Because of the lightweight fabric, these are popular when you’re looking for more portable alternatives. Think of going to the gym or often travelling for work. There’s no reason to weigh down your luggage or gym bag if you can get a quality towel that simply has a lower GSM.
You can find home towels with GSM of this nature very functional in a variety of applications:
- Gym: Because it’s very portable and dries quickly, you can put the towel back in your carry bag soon after using it
- Kitchen: An ideal lightweight towel to keep around for drying hands or wiping up spills
- Activities: Although beach towels should be very absorbent, a 350gsm towel should still suffice
400 – 600 GSM
This is the sweet spot when it comes to towels. You’ll have a towel that feels ultra-luxurious but you won’t be encumbered by bathroom linens that are so heavy they’re awkward to work with—especially when it’s time to wash them.
They’re also practical for a wide range of purposes, so you can stock your cupboards with towels in this range and you’ll see they’re handy as all types of towels:
- Bath towels
- Gym towels
- Guest towels
600 – 900 GSM
The 700gsm to 900gsm category is the premium range and all towels in this niche can usually be seen as ‘luxury towels’. They’re most appropriate for use in the bathroom, as the heavier fabric makes them less practical for other purposes.
With the luxurious feel of these towels, it’s ideal to use after a relaxing shower or bath. Do remember that the high-density fabric takes a while to fully dry out after use. The towels need to hang in such a way that there’s optimal airflow between the fibres.
Finding Your Ideal Towel: What Other Characteristics Matter?
GSM is a practical starting point to pick the type of towel you’ll buy because as mentioned, each range of density is appropriate for certain uses. In addition though, keep the following characteristics in mind when comparing different towels.
Size and Type
Why does Comfy stock so many different home towels? Because we want to make sure a new towel is as practical as it is luxurious and for that you need the right size and type:
- Hand towels: These measure around 50cm x 100cm and have many practical uses in the bathroom and elsewhere. Use them to dry your hair, wipe your hands or use as guest towels.
- Bath towel: Measuring about 130cm x 70cm they are common in most homes.
- Bath sheet: For anyone wanting more absorption power or the luxury of a large towel to wrap yourself in for comfort’s sake, a bath sheet measuring around 160cm x 90cm is a great buy.
Note that sizes do differ slightly between manufacturers, but the basic uses of these towels stay the same.
You may realise you need only one size for your current needs, or that a complete bath towel set has the functionality your household will appreciate. Comfy can help with any sets or single purchases.
Research the type of fibres used to manufacture the towel. While bamboo is known for its absorbency, cotton is an excellent option since they dry faster. Also, cotton often comes with anti-microbial features that you won’t find with bamboo.
If you do opt for cotton, don’t settle for just any type. Cotton’s quality, softness and durability will depend on the plants the cotton comes from. This is why Comfy is so proud of the African Cotton in our towel collections. It has longer fibres which means you get more durable, softer towels.
You can consider towels as part of your bathroom décor since rich colours and the towels’ textures can communicate luxury, style and comfort. View the Comfy bath towels range to see neutral colours that are sure to complement or even upscale your bathroom’s look.
Some people prefer using white towels, no matter the theme in their homes or bathrooms. White does easily match many different interior decorating themes but it has the additional benefit of being easy to care for. Since you don’t have to worry about colours that may fade, you have more flexibility in terms of choosing detergents.
While shopping for towels, also make sure you have enough, without cluttering the cupboards. Experts suggest having two or three sets of towels for each household member. Your ideal number may depend on your laundry cycles throughout the week:
- If you wash often you’ll have a clean set when you change a towel after it’s been used three times.
- Households that wash less often may prefer having one in use, one in your cupboards ready for the change and the other in the wash.
How to Care for High GSM Bath Towels
To maintain your towels’ luxurious feel and stylish look, try these tips:
- Wash smaller loads to ensure the water has space to flow and each towel can wash completely clean.
- Use warm water—never scalding.
- Instead of detergent, add some white distilled vinegar or baking soda to washes. This helps remove residue, keeps towels as absorbent as the day you bought them and will maintain the fluffy texture.
- Sun dry, as this helps disinfect the fabric.
- When placing towels in a cupboard for storage, make sure they’re completely dry first.
- Linen cupboards with a moisture absorber will prevent towels from acquiring musty smells.
- If you accidentally pull one of the loops of the towel fabric, cut it level with the other loops to prevent it from snagging and damaging the towel further.
Ready to Pick Your Preferred GSM and Towel Type?
At Comfy we stock a range of bath towels to help make it easy for anyone to find their ideal type, or even a set to meet your entire household’s towel needs.
You can shop according to size, or pick from one of our three collections, all exceptional and each with its own benefits:
- Ultra Light: Our 360gsm range that’s gentle on the skin while offering you quick drying, high-absorbency features.
- Plush: The 480gsm range looks elegant, absorbs well and is soft to the touch.
- Super Plush: With a 630gsm rating you can have premium quality towels in your own home, bringing the spa feel into your daily life.
Order now using our intuitive, user-friendly ordering process, allowing you to customise your home towels order. If you have questions, our friendly team members are happy to assist.