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This $24 Turkish bath towel is the reason I'm ditching terry cloth

It gets softer and softer with every wash!
Turkish Bath Towel Ode
Courtesy of Katie Jackson
/ Source: TODAY

My friend has a beautiful home in the Hamptons. But the first thing that struck me the last time I stayed with her was her bathroom towels. They had tassels and looked like the towel version of decorative throw blankets. In fact, I wasn't sure if I was supposed to dry off with them.

Jessica assured me they were there to be used, not just admired. She'd brought them back from a yoga retreat she hosted in Greece. "Who brings towels back as souvenirs?" I would have asked. But I'd already touched one and instantly realized I needed Turkish bath towels in my life.

Cacala Turkish Bath Towels

While I couldn't jet off to Greece, I could definitely order this $24 Turkish bath towel with a 4.6-star-rating on Amazon. Nearly 80% of its 1,200+ reviews are 5-star. Need I say more?

What exactly are Turkish towels?

Turkish towels, also called peshtemals, are made with Turkish cotton. They have been used for centuries in Turkish baths. What microfiber is to sheets, Turkish cotton is to towels. It's the perfect material for towels for several reasons. First, Turkish cotton is comprised of very long fibers that mean fewer joins (or seams) are needed. That results in a smoother, softer feel. Second, unlike terry cloth which stiffens and becomes scratchy with washing, Turkish cotton becomes softer.

My Turkish bath towel with my old, regular bath towel on top to show the size difference
Katie Jackson

Finally, it dries very quickly since it's so lightweight. The package it comes in is beautifully wrapped and surprisingly small. I was shocked when I unfolded the towel and saw how big it is. At 70 inches by 37 inches, it's much longer than the AmazonBasics bath towel I was used to. Those bath towels are just 50 inches by 34 inches, and they weigh twice as much! In other words, this might be one of the best beach towels ever or even a great picnic blanket.

They're too pretty to store in a closet

I've done some research on Turkish towels — enough to know they're used in wedding ceremonies — but I still don't know why they have tassels. However, I'm not complaining. I love this added aesthetic detail even though it does make me hesitant to dry them in the dryer. That said, these towels dry so fast they probably hang dry faster than they would with a load of wet laundry!

My Cacala towels in my guest bathroom
Katie Jackson

Cacala's towels come in 33 different colors and are covered in horizontal white strips of different sizes. They really do look like scarves or blankets that belong on your best living room furniture. I have a linen closet where I store my towels, and these certainly wouldn't take up much space. However, I'm seriously thinking of buying a wicker basket so I can roll them up and show them off in my bathrooms.

I want to bring (and wear) them everywhere

Because these towels are so stylish and light, they don't deserve to be limited to home use. I travel about 8 months of the year and always get cold on planes. Sometimes just having a thin layer between you and the AC makes a huge difference. Yet, I can't justify packing a blanket. However, I can justify packing a "blanket" that weighs a lot less than fleece blankets and also functions as a beach towel and even a wrap if needed.

I also have the hand towel size which I plan on wearing as a scarf as soon as it gets cold enough. I can't wait for the reaction when I tell my friends (or hopefully, my date) the accessory I'm wearing is a towel. The only thing that would make it better is if I was able to tell them I brought it back from a yoga retreat in Greece.

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