What Is A Baby Towel

As a new parent, you want to provide your baby with the softest and gentlest products for their delicate skin.

Baby Towels

When it comes to bath time, most parents opt for using special baby towels instead of regular adult towels.

But what exactly are baby towels, and why are they better for your little one?

Why Use Baby Towels?

There are several key reasons why baby towels are preferable over regular towels for your infant:


Baby towels are smaller, usually around 30 x 30 inches, which makes them easier to wrap your baby in after a bath. Regular towels are too large and bulky in comparison.


Baby towels are designed to be extra absorbent to soak up moisture quickly after bathing. Many are made from soft cotton or bamboo which naturally absorbs water better than regular terry cloth.


The materials used for baby towels are chosen specifically for their soft, gentle texture against a baby’s sensitive skin. Many also avoid harsh detergents or fabric softeners when washing.


Many baby towels come with attached hoods to help keep your baby’s head warm and dry after a bath. Regular towels lack this useful feature.

Special Features

Some baby towels boast special moisture-wicking fabrics and “no twist” materials to remain extra soft and fluffy after repeated washing.

So in summary, the size, fabrics, hoods, and special design features of baby towels make them ideal for keeping your little one warm, dry, and comfortable after bath time.

Baby Towel Materials

Baby Towel Materials

When shopping for the best baby towels, pay attention to the materials. The softest, most gentle yet absorbent options include:


Bamboo baby towels are naturally hypoallergenic and antibacterial. Bamboo fabric is also highly absorbent, dries quickly, and remains super soft after many washes.

Organic Cotton

Choose 100% organic cotton for its breathability and soft texture against delicate skin. Organic cotton is grown without pesticides so it’s safer for babies.


Microfiber is a lightweight synthetic that absorbs moisture well and is very soft for sensitive skin. Easy to launder too.

Terry Cloth

Many baby towels use special “low pile” terry cloth that is thinner than regular terry towels. It’s still absorbent but less scratchy for babies.

No matter what fabric you choose, avoid towels with dyes, fragrances, or other harsh chemicals that can irritate your baby’s skin.

Special Baby Towel Features

In addition to different materials, there are some other useful features that make baby towels stand out:


As mentioned earlier, hoods help keep your baby’s head and hair dry while dressing them after a bath. It also provides warmth.

Velour Lining

Some towels have a velour side that’s extra soft against your baby’s face and body. Luxuriously smooth!

No Twist Design

“No twist” baby towels retain their thickness and absorbency after washing without needing fabric softener. Good for sensitive skin.

Organic Prints

Cute organic prints and dyes add style without chemicals. Choose fun, gender-neutral themes.

Extra Large Size

If you prefer, select oversized baby towels that will last longer as your child grows into the toddler years.

How Many Baby Towels?

Most families find 2-4 baby towels per child is adequate. It depends on how often you bathe your baby and do laundry. More towels mean less pressure on your laundry schedule. For newborns bathing just once a week, 2 towels are fine. As they grow older and need more frequent baths, have 3-4 on hand.

It’s better to have more towels so you always have a fresh one ready after bath time. Plus, babies love seeing their favorite animal or patterned towels again and again!

Washing Baby Towels

Only use a mild liquid detergent without dyes or fragrances when washing baby towels – and skip the fabric softener. These chemicals can irritate your baby’s sensitive skin.

For the first few months when babies are only bathed weekly, you only need to wash towels once a week too. As they grow older and require more frequent bathing, wash towels every 3-5 uses.

You can safely tumble dry baby towels on low heat. Toss in a couple of wool dryer balls to help fluff them up! Dryer balls are an eco-friendly alternative to dryer sheets.

When Should You Stop Using Baby Towels?

It depends on the size you purchased, but many baby towels are useful well into the toddler years up to age 2 or 3. Hooded towels in particular help keep older babies and toddlers comfortable after bath playtime.

If your child seems too large for their baby towel and ready to graduate to a larger size, it’s time to transition to a regular bath towel. You can repurpose old baby towels as soft washcloths!

Baby Towel or Regular Towel?

While regular towels can work, baby towels are specially designed for little ones. But if you’re in a pinch, follow these tips when using a regular towel for your baby:

  • Choose a soft, thin towel without scratchy fabric or harsh detergent residue
  • Fold it into a smaller size to fit your baby better
  • Be extra gentle when drying your baby’s delicate skin
  • Use a separate towel to gently pat dry their hair
  • Wrap them up well so they don’t get chilled

Why Use Hooded Baby Towels?

Hooded towels are the ultimate bathtime accessory for babies and toddlers. The hood serves several useful purposes:

Keeps Baby’s Head Warm

The hood provides extra warmth for your baby’s wet head after a bath. Newborns struggle to regulate body temperature so the hood helps prevent heat loss.

Aids Drying Hair

Towel hoods are great for gently drying your baby’s delicate hair and keeping it covered right after washing.

Sense of Security

The hooded towel surrounds your baby in a cozy, secure environment reminiscent of the womb. This helps soothe and comfort them.

Cuteness Factor

Whether it’s a lion, elephant, or puppyhood, nothing beats an adorable hooded towel to complete bath time!

Using a Hooded Baby Towel

Using a Hooded Baby Towel

Follow these tips for an easy, stress-free experience using a hooded baby towel:

  • Before bath time, place the open towel on a flat surface like the floor or changing table.
  • Ensure the hood is positioned in a natural way that won’t pull on your baby’s head or cover their face.
  • After lifting your baby from the tub, lay them directly on top of the open towel.
  • Wrap the towel snugly around your baby and flip the hood gently over their head.
  • Pat dry your baby’s body through the towel, then unfold just their hair to blot dry gently with the hood.
  • Keep your baby wrapped in the towel while massaging lotion, combing hair, and getting dressed.

Caring for Baby Towels

Baby towels require some special care to keep them soft and absorbent:

  • Wash new towels first before use to maximize absorbency.
  • Wash towels separately from regular laundry at first.
  • Use a mild, fragrance-free baby detergent.
  • Avoid fabric softeners and dryer sheets that coat fibers.
  • Wash similar colors together so dyes don’t bleed.
  • Machine wash cold and tumble dry low.
  • Remove lint with a silicone brush or pill shaver.

With proper care, your baby towels will remain ultra-soft and plush for years! Paying attention to the materials, absorbency, special features, and washing guidelines will ensure you choose the perfect towels.

Baby Towel Shopping Tips

Keep these tips in mind when shopping for baby towels:

  • Feel towels in person whenever possible to assess softness.
  • Check that stitches and hems are well-constructed. Avoid loose threads.
  • Look for organic certification like GOTS for chemical-free fabrics.
  • Compare dimensions to find the right size for your baby.
  • Select patterns and prints that will hide stains and are gender-neutral.
  • Read labels closely and avoid unknown synthetics or scratchy fabrics.
  • Calculate cost per use – a higher price may be worthwhile for quality.
  • Search for sales around holidays and clearance events. Sign up for brand emails.
  • Consider buying a towel & washcloth set for multiple uses.
  • Purchase from brands specializing in organic baby products you trust.


Are hooded baby towels necessary?

Hooded towels are not an absolute necessity but they provide extra warmth, dryness, and security for babies after bathing. The hood helps regulate temperature and dry their delicate hair. Babies seem comforted by the cozy, blanket-like feel.

What is the best baby towel material?

The best baby towel fabrics are ultra-soft like bamboo, organic cotton, microfiber, and terry cloth. Bamboo is naturally hypoallergenic and antimicrobial. Organic cotton is breathable and gentle. Microfiber and low-pile terry cloth are absorbent but smooth.

How many baby towels should I have?

Most families find 2-4 baby towels per child is sufficient. Get at least 2 to start, then add more as needed depending on your baby’s bathing frequency and laundry schedule. More towels mean always having a fresh one handy after every bath.

Can I use regular towels for my baby?

You can use a regular towel for your baby in a pinch, but take care to use only very soft, thin, chemical-free towels. Fold it to fit your baby’s smaller body and be extremely gentle when patting their delicate skin dry. Use a separate section just for their hair.

When should I stop using baby towels?

Once your child outgrows their baby towels or reaches toddler age, around 2-3 years old, you can transition to regular bath towels. Repurpose worn baby towels as soft washcloths or kitchen rags!


When bath time rolls around, you want the softest, most gentle towel possible for your little one. Baby towels are specially designed to be the perfect size and fabric for drying your baby comfortably.

Look for super soft fabrics like bamboo or organic cotton that naturally absorb moisture without chemicals. Special features like hoods, velour lining, and fun prints make baby towels even more useful.

Follow the care instructions to keep baby towels feeling plush. With the right towels, you’ll look forward to ending each day with a relaxing, bonding bath time routine.

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.