Bath towels are easy to overlook. As long as you’ve got one to use, it may not even cross your mind!
Not for seniors or the elderly, though – their skin is quite delicate and dry, so you’ve got to be mindful of skin injuries when choosing a bath towel for the elderly.
This post will help you learn about the features to look for, the best products, and more when shopping for this essential bathroom accessory for seniors and the elderly. Let’s get into it!
Here is a quick list of my recommended bath towels for older adults. Keep reading to learn more about shopping for bath towels for a senior or elderly person you love.
Charisma Hygro Cotton Bath Towel Set
Why Might Older Adults Need a Special Bath Towel? 5 Key Reasons
1. Delicate Skin
A good majority of seniors struggle with thin, fragile skin that is prone to tearing. Thinning skin is a natural occurrence that comes with age, but sun exposure and genetics could also contribute to it.
Some drugs, such as corticosteroids, also weaken the skin. That said, seniors need soft bath towels to keep their skin safe when rubbing it dry.
2. Dry Skin
Just like thinning skin, dry skin, also known as xerosis, is a common dermatological problem in the elderly. Dry skin leaves the skin more susceptible to cracks due to water loss from the stratum corneum.
That could cause itching, bleeding, and asteatotic dermatitis. A good towel for the aged should therefore be free of toxins and gentle to prevent cracks.
3. Mobility Issues
Seniors also struggle with impaired strength and balance—simple daily activities and bathing can be more difficult. Some could find it challenging to hold a bulky towel or quickly drop their towel in the bathroom when showering.
Others are entirely bedridden, which complicates the bathing process. In such a case, you need a super thick, absorbent towel that can keep water off the bed when cleaning them.
4. Fecal Incontinence
Also called bowel incontinence, it’s the inability to control bowel movements.
It shouldn’t come as a surprise to see messes on towels, especially with seniors who could insist on taking care of their restroom needs even when they are unable to. Therefore, you might need a towel that can handle a lot of washes and is stain-resistant.
Most seniors, especially those who rely on others when bathing, hate baths. Not because they are unhygienic but because they feel it’s an invasion of their privacy.
They, therefore, resist bathtime to maintain their dignity. In such a case, you need a towel to cover them well to safeguard their modesty. You could also need an extra towel that they can use to hold over their private areas when bathing.
What Important Features Should Seniors Look for When Shopping for a Bath Towel?
A towel is a cloth used to dry the body after a bath. Having said that, the most crucial factor to consider is the towel’s ability to absorb water while staying fluffy, not soggy. Instead of just pushing the water around, it should draw moisture away from your body and onto itself.
To quickly, softly, and effectively remove the water from their body, seniors require a soft, thick towel with a higher gram of fabric per square meter (GSM).
Material and Feel (Texture)
The towel should feel good against the skin of your elderly loved one. Often, thicker, softer towels are preferable to thinner, delightfully scratchy ones. Egyptian cotton is exceptionally thirsty and soft because its strands are longer.
Turkish cotton towels are lighter and dry quicker because their cotton fibers are shorter. Choose what is more important to you. It’s also worth noting that deeply saturated colors have so much dye that they do not absorb short-term fabric softeners.
Towels are anything but standard. As such, you should carefully consider the measurements before making a purchase. Make sure that your ideal size has ample coverage as per your needs.
A towel that is either too tiny or too large will be uncomfortable, leaving you either cold and exposed or drowning in bulky cloth.
Good bath towels for seniors should dry fast and well to reduce the likelihood of a musty smell. Quick-drying towels also make the laundering process more manageable because they won’t spend as much time in the dryer. Plus, getting them fully dry keeps them clean and germ-free.
Regular washing, though, may wear out a senior’s towel quickly. So, choose a bath towel that doesn’t unravel, shred, or fall apart over time.
Although fading, shrinkage, and piling are normal, they shouldn’t occur to an annoying degree. You could also use several bath towels to avoid overusing one.
Free of Toxins
Seniors need non-allergic, toxin-free towels that are gentle on the skin. For that, natural fibers are the way to go. 100% cotton is a popular choice since it offers the blend of absorbency, softness, and durability that most people desire.
Top 5 Bath Towels for Seniors and the Elderly
This eco-friendly towel is as good as they come. It is a renowned soft luxury hotel towel that seniors can use for regular showers. It is made of 100% genuine Turkish cotton that softens with each use. The towel has a 700 GSM, is very large (27″ x 54″), and is highly absorbent.
The set consists of 4 pieces and is the ideal blend of features for a senior’s bath towel! Although it is significantly thicker and heavier than a typical bath towel, it has greater coverage and is more absorbent. The hems are double-stitched to last a long time.
2. Charisma Hygro Cotton Bath Towel
HygroCotton Towels are made using a unique, patented spinning process that yields yarn with a ground-breaking hollow core. This amazing technology results in a more absorbent towel that dries faster and blooms to become softer and loftier with each wash.
The towel is also Oeko-Tex Certified, which means it’s toxin-free and non-allergenic. These attributes make it ideal for the elderly.
This package comes in a 6-piece set of fluffy towels. The set includes two washcloths, two hand towels, two bath towels. All the towels are made of ultra-absorbent single-ply fabric to give a soft, luxurious plush feel that is gentle on the skin.
They come in various colors and are extra durable, thanks to their beautifully textured long Egyptian fibers. This set would be a good option for seniors looking for a variety of bathroom towels for different uses.
This is an expertly woven towel with high absorbency. It is made of 100% low-linting Egyptian cotton and can be bought in pieces or as a collection. The set comes with two bath towels, two hand towels, and two washcloths and is embellished with a stylish triple stitch pattern.
The sumptuous set is fade-resistant and gentle to the skin, making it a long-lasting choice. However, complaints have been made about the quality of dyes used in making the towels, giving way to discolored spots and patches.
If you’d like to encourage your senior to bathe more, this choice will do. It resembles an upscale spa-type bath towel made of plush, long-staple Egyptian cotton, with a 2-ply design that makes it elegant and super absorbent.
It’s not too thick, neither is it too thin – it’s just right! It is easy to carry and dries quickly. As if that’s not enough, the bath towel comes with other towels. The set has two bath towels, two hand towels, and two washcloths! Best of all, it’s Oeko-Tex certified, meaning it is free from toxins!
Four Alternatives to Bath Towels for Seniors
These are traditional hand-woven Turkish towels. They’ve been around for years and can be used as shawls, picnic blankets, beach blankets, tablecloths, and, you guessed it, bath towels! They can be made of bamboo or linen, or cotton.
They come in various sizes, 65-70″ by 35-40″ being the most popular. They have excellent body coverage, are incredibly light, fast drying, stain resistant, and can dry your body well.
Bath sheets are towels with more surface area for absorption. As such, they can do the job better than towels. They are also the best bet for complete body coverage.
A bath sheet would be a great alternative if your senior often use more than one towel to dry. Try a more luxurious bathing experience with these–you are worth it.
Beach towels are bigger than bath sheets, but they have one major problem: they’re too thin. They don’t do a great job drying, but they still come in handy when the bath towel is nowhere to be found. They’re also great options in outdoor areas since they dry faster to be used again.
Desperate times call for desperate measures. If you can’t find something to dry yourself off, look for cotton garments that can absorb the water from your body.
Some people will even brush their teeth as the water dries off, but for seniors, that could expose them to the cold. If you need a fast solution to a good towel, your closet could be a basic(albeit temporary) place to start!
5 Tips for Using Bath Towels for Seniors
- Wash your new bath towels before using them to prevent fluff from shedding. They become more absorbent after washing since the excess manufacturing fluff is removed.
- To protect your senior’s dignity, wrap them up with a large towel for warmth and privacy.
- Always check the label of your towel for washing instructions before laundering.
- Avoid excessive amounts of detergent and fabric softener because they might accumulate in the towel fibers and reduce absorbency.
- After washing, shake off excess water from the towels and dry them on the warmest setting possible. If at all feasible, hang the towels to dry in a sunny location with sufficient airflow.
Seniors need soft, plush towels that will withstand repeated washings and use. More than that, they require safe, non-allergenic, and stain-resistant bath towels. With either of the five recommendations, your senior can enjoy a comfortable bathing experience.
The specific towel, however, comes down to their individual preferences and needs. Are they more comfortable with a bigger or smaller towel?
Would they rather use a darker towel that hides stains or a bright one that reveals dirt so they can keep it clean throughout? The choice is yours.
Make sure the towel is absorbent, soft, toxin-free, gentle, and long-lasting!