Is a Microfiber Towel Good for Curly Hair?

Caring for curly hair can be challenging. The unique texture and structure of curls require specialized techniques and products to keep them looking their best. One area where curly hair needs particular attention is drying. Choosing the right towel is crucial for maintaining the health and beauty of curly locks.

Is a Microfiber Towel Good for Curly Hair

Traditional cotton towels can cause frizz, breakage, and damage to curly hair. The rough texture and loose weave agitate the cuticle, creating friction that separates and frizzes curls. A better option is a microfiber towel.

How Microfiber Towels Benefit Curly Hair

Microfiber towels are specially constructed with ultra-fine fibers woven tightly together. This creates a soft, smooth surface perfect for delicate curls. Here’s why microfiber towels are ideal for drying curly hair:

Fast Absorption

The fine fibers of microfiber towels provide incredible absorbency. They can soak up to 7 times their weight in water! Microfiber towels swiftly soak up excess moisture from hair without needing to rub or scrub.

Less time spent drying means less opportunity for frizz and damage. The quick absorption also helps curls spring back, enhancing natural pattern and definition.


Microfiber is smooth and non-abrasive. The towels glide over hair without causing friction or disturbing the cuticle. There are no loose loops that can pull or snag strands.

This gentle action helps keep curls intact and frizz-free. It prevents the hair breakage and split ends that vigorous drying with cotton can cause.


Microfiber towels are much lighter than traditional cotton towels. Less weight pulling on hair reduces stress and strain on curls.

The lightweight feel is also more comfortable to wear twisted up on the head during the drying process.

Moisture Retention

Microfiber towels excel at drawing away excess water without over-drying strands. Some moisture is left behind, keeping hair balanced instead of parched.

Optimal hydration helps hair stay soft, supple, and shiny. Well-moisturized curls also spring back better and have more defined pattern.

Heat Protection

By swiftly absorbing water, microfiber towels cut down on drying time. Less time spent drying means less exposure to damaging heat styling.

Decreasing heat damage keeps curls resilient and helps maintain the integrity of hair structure.


Cotton towels often leave lint and fuzz behind in hair. Microfiber’s tight weave doesn’t allow lint to transfer.

No leftover lint means hair stays clean and tangle-free after drying.

Enhanced Styling

Gently drying with a microfiber towel gives curls the perfect base for styling. Well-defined and frizz-free hair better holds curl creams, gels, and other products.

Improved styling ability lets you achieve your ideal curly look with ease.

How To Use a Microfiber Towel on Curly Hair

It’s simple to incorporate a microfiber towel into your regular curly hair care routine:

  1. Shampoo and condition hair as usual. Rinse out conditioner completely.
  2. Gently squeeze out excess water. Do not wring, twist, or scrub hair.
  3. Wrap hair in the microfiber towel, arranging curls evenly. For short hair, twist the towel down over the head. For longer hair, wrap hair up into a loose turban.
  4. Let hair sit wrapped for 10-20 minutes. The microfiber will absorb water quickly without rubbing or friction.
  5. Unwrap towel and style hair as desired with leave-in conditioner, styling cream, etc. Air dry or diffuse.
  6. For extra absorption, gently scrunch hair with towel then allow to air dry further before styling. Take care not to ruffle hair too much.

Key Takeaway: Always handle hair gently when using microfiber towels. Do not rub or scrub.

Shopping for the Best Microfiber Hair Towels

With so many microfiber hair towels available, it can be tricky to choose the right one. Here are helpful tips for picking a quality towel for curly hair:

  • See it in person – Online descriptions don’t tell the whole story. Inspect and feel towels in person whenever possible. Ensure it has a smooth, silky finish.
  • Mind the edges – Avoid towels with stitching, hems, or embellishments that could snag hair. Opt for cleanly finished edges.
  • Assess absorbency – Look for a density of at least 80 GSM (grams per square meter). Higher densities around 120-200 GSM have superior absorbency.
  • Consider closure – Pick a towel with buttons, snaps, or a twist tie to secure it on your head during drying. Elastic bands can pull on hair.
  • Choose compact size – For turban-wrapping, select a towel about 40″ long and 30″ wide. Bigger towels are bulky and can unravel.
  • Know the care – Read washing instructions before buying. Most microfiber towels are machine washable for easy maintenance.

Best Drying Practices for Curly Hair

A microfiber towel offers major advantages, but there are still right and wrong ways to dry curly hair. Follow these best practices:


  • Pat or scrunch hair gently to absorb moisture
  • Wrap hair loosely in microfiber towel
  • Allow hair to air dry further after removing towel
  • Use cool or lukewarm water when washing
  • Apply leave-in conditioner and styling products to soaking wet hair


  • Vigorously rub or scrub hair, even with microfiber
  • Wring, twist, or wrap hair tightly while drying
  • Dry completely with towel – always leave some moisture
  • Wash with hot water
  • Apply products like gels and oils to damp hair

Key Takeaway: Always handle curly hair gently, whether washing, drying, or styling.

Microfiber vs Other Drying Methods for Curly Hair

Microfiber vs Terry Cloth Towels

Terry cloth cotton towels have loops and fibers that snag and pull curly hair. The abrasive texture causes friction, frizz, and breakage. Microfiber’s smooth, snag-free surface is far gentler.

Microfiber vs T-Shirt

A t-shirt is smoother than terry cloth so less damaging to hair. But the fabric doesn’t absorb water well, leaving hair dripping wet. Microfiber towels are specially designed to soak up excess moisture.

Microfiber vs Diffusing

Diffusers dry hair faster than any towel and help set curls. But heat from a blow dryer can damage hair over time leading to breakage. Microfiber towels eliminate heat exposure.

Microfiber vs Air Drying

Letting hair air dry is gentlest, but takes a very long time. Hair is exposed while damp, allowing frizz and stretching of curls. Microfiber towels speed up process and protect while drying.

Caring for Microfiber Towels

It’s easy to keep microfiber hair towels looking and performing their best:

  • Machine wash in cold water using mild detergent. Wash after every few uses to prevent buildup.
  • No fabric softener – it leaves coating that reduces absorbency.
  • Avoid bleach – it weakens fibers. Vinegar is a natural whitener if needed.
  • Hang to dry – high heat from dryers degrades microfiber over time.
  • Wash separately – zip in a garment bag. The hooks and hardware on other items can snag.
  • Brush pills – use garment brush or shaver to remove any pilling on the surface.

Key Takeaway: Always wash microfiber towels in cold water without fabric softener and allow to air dry.


How often should I replace my microfiber hair towel?

With proper care, a high-quality microfiber towel will last 1-2 years with regular use. Replace sooner if towel feels rough, shows holes, or becomes stained.

Should I use a microfiber towel every wash day?

Yes, microfiber towels are gentle enough to use safely each time you wash your hair. There is no need to alternate with other drying methods.

What if my hair doesn’t absorb much water?

Thick or coarse hair may require extra drying time in the microfiber towel. Try wrapping for 20-30 minutes to fully absorb moisture before styling.

Can microfiber cause hair breakage?

When used correctly, microfiber is gentle and won’t cause breakage. Avoid vigorous rubbing that could damage hair. Handle hair and towel with care.

Is it okay to re-use a microfiber towel between washes?

It’s best to use a fresh towel each wash day for maximum absorbency and hygiene. But in a pinch, a microfiber towel can be reused once or twice if kept clean.


Microfiber hair towels are a must-have for caring for curly and coily hair. The ultra-fine fibers create a smooth, non-abrasive surface that is gentle on delicate curls.

Microfiber towels quickly absorb excess moisture from hair after washing. This helps reduce drying time, define curls, and control frizz. Proper technique is important – always handle hair gently without rubbing or scrubbing.

Take the time to select a quality microfiber hair towel. Look for dense, extra-absorbent microfiber with tightly woven construction and cleanly finished edges. With the right towel and proper handling, microfiber drying is the safest and most effective for keeping curly hair healthy and hydrated.

Emma Kellam
Emma Kellam

I'm Emma, and I run Towels Edition, a website for fellow home goods enthusiasts who, like me, are passionate about textiles. After working in high-end retail, I was amazed by how little most people (myself included!) know about all the towel options out there.

I research and write all the content myself. Whether it's specialized towels like bar mops, Turkish cotton production methods, or comparing hair towel absorbency, I cover it. My goal is to share my knowledge and enthusiasm to help others.

Running Towels Edition allows me to constantly expand my own expertise too. I love learning about innovations in bamboo fabric or ideal bath towels. It's so rewarding to receive emails thanking me for recommendations that improved my readers' routines.

I want Towels Edition to be the ultimate online towel resource, making this overlooked necessity far more fascinating. My aim is to open people's eyes to how specialty towels can thoroughly enhance hygiene, cleaning, recreation and self-care.