No lint left behind
Doesn’t absorb moisture quickly
Not soft, even after washing
LaModaHome’s Turkish Cotton Hand Towels seem like the perfect choice for a bathroom or kitchen. Featuring a heathered background with a white border and edged with twisted fringe, the towels are stylish but still simple enough to go with almost any décor. Since Turkish towels are famed for being lightweight and fast-drying yet absorbent, they seem ideal for use as hand towels and dish towels.
But do they live up to our high expectations in real life? We put these towels to the test to see how they fared—here’s our verdict.
Material: Possibly a Turkish cotton blend
According to the description of these towels, they’re hand-loomed in Turkey from 100% Turkish cotton. However, they weren’t as soft and didn’t absorb as well as other 100% Turkish cotton towels we’ve tried, so we couldn’t help but wonder if the blend contained some synthetic fibers. To test, we lit a match and briefly burned one of the tassels. The flame flared up and burned faster than the tassel on another 100% Turkish cotton towel. It also left a few tiny hard black specks stuck to the fibers—usually evidence of synthetic fibers.
Does it matter if the towels aren’t completely Turkish cotton? In a nutshell, yes. What makes Turkish cotton special is its staple length. The longer the staple fibers, the stronger and smoother the thread will be, as longer fibers don’t need to be joined together as often when spun into thread. Turkish cotton is a long-staple variety, so it’s strong and silky, resists pilling and tearing, isn’t linty, and will get softer with each wash. It’s also known to be highly absorbent—though not quite as absorbent as Egyptian cotton. Since these towels had a tendency to push water around before soaking it up (particularly on dishes and glassware), we’re fairly certain they weren’t made from 100 percent Turkish cotton.
They weren’t as soft and didn’t absorb as well as other 100 percent Turkish cotton towels we’ve tried.
Texture: Sturdy and slightly rough
Even after four washings, these hand towels felt a little rough and stiff compared to bath towel-sized Turkish towels we’ve tried. However, they’re woven in the same traditional flat style. This style of weaving, combined with the Turkish cotton, is what helps Turkish towels dry lightning fast and still fold up into a small form. These are particularly important benefits in humid climates or poorly ventilated bathrooms, where thick towels are prone to getting stinky and mildewed. It also makes them ideal for travel since they’ll take up a lot less space.
These might not seem like important considerations for small hand or dish towels, but then again, who wouldn’t want towels that dry fast and take up less real estate in your linen closet or kitchen drawers? While these towels weren’t super effective at drying dishes, they dried our hands fine, though we wouldn’t complain if they were a bit softer.
Washing: Softened up a little but shrank
These towels were stiff and almost slick right out of the package. We washed them four times, including two stints in the dryer, to see if they’d soften up. They did soften a bit but still felt rough and rugged, like sturdy denim or linen that needs to be broken in. However, the color didn’t run at all—the whites stayed creamy white—and the tassels stayed nice and twisted.
The towels shrunk lengthwise when washed, and unfortunately, they didn’t do it evenly.
The towels shrunk lengthwise when washed, and unfortunately, they didn’t do it evenly. Some shrank about 1 inch; others up to 3 inches. Since the fabric stayed smooth after washing, the shrinkage couldn’t be attributed to wrinkles. If you plan on draping several hand towels over a towel bar and want them to be the same length, this could be a problem.
Price: Similar in feel to linen, but cheaper
At around $20 for four generously sized hand towels, these aren’t a bad deal. You get aesthetically pleasing pieces that will likely stand up to years of use. The texture is reminiscent of linen that needs to be broken in, and compared to linen hand towels and dish towels, these are about half the price. However, considering the likelihood that there are cheap synthetic fibers blended in, these towels might not seem like such a bargain after all.
Competition: Better options out there
Cacala Hand Face Turkish Pestemal Towel: LaModaHome beats the price of this popular brand. Cacala sells 23 x 36-inch hand towels for about $12 each in a wide array of colors. LaModaHome has fewer color options, is a few inches smaller, and isn’t as soft and absorbent, but they cost around half the price per unit.
Felt a little rough and stiff compared to bath towel-sized Turkish towels we’ve tried.
Bosphorus Turkish Cotton Hand Face Towel Set: The prices for these two brands are about the same. LaModaHome sells four 15.7 x 31.5-inch towels for around $20, while Bosphorus sells eight 19 x 35-inch towels for double that. You’ll get more color and pattern options with Bosphorus, and the fabric will be softer and more absorbent.
Want to take a look at some other options? See our guide to the best Turkish towels.
If you’re looking to upgrade your bathroom or kitchen hand towels to something more boho-chic than traditional terry cloth, this set will do just fine. However, keep in mind they’re likely not 100% Turkish cotton as the brand claims and, as such, won’t feel as soft and absorbent. They’ll dry your hands without a problem and are rugged enough to last for ages, but if you want a workhorse dish towel that can dry glasses and countertops in a jiffy, keep looking.
- Product Name Turkish Cotton Hand Towels
- Product Brand LaModaHome
- Price $21.99
- Weight 6.4 oz.
- Product Dimensions 10.6 x 6.7 x 1.1 in.
- Color 9 options
- Material 100 percent Turkish cotton