7 Best Workout Towels in 2024

Author: Ihor Shymechko (26 years of Oly Lifting & Training experience)

Reviewed by: Oleksiy Torokhtiy (Olympian with 21 years of Oly Lifting experience)

Workout towels help keep you and the exercise equipment you use dry.
Wiping off sweat marks is important both for hygienic and safety reasons, especially if you use a public gym.
Here are the seven best workout towels I recommend you get, based on years of fitness experience and hundreds of similar products I tried.

 In a hurry? 

In a hurry and can’t keep reading? How about you check out the Rogue Gym Towel. The Rogue Gym Towel is currently the best sweat towel in my collection and one I highly recommend.

It easily beats out affordable gym towels and stands tall even when compared to much pricier sports brand towels.

Our team of experts and professional athletes, among which are coaches and medical professionals, has tested and compared 12 workout towels to bring you the 7 best ones. The towels went through meticulous evaluation across 4 key factors and our team spent over 20 hours in total testing them. In addition to the testing process, they have also reviewed hundreds of online user reviews. We update this list all the time, so leave a comment and share your experiences with us!

Product NameTotalMaterial QualityAbsorbencySoftnessPrice VS Quality
Rogue Gym3910109.59.5
S&T INC.3488810

Gym sweat towels are necessary workout accessories to have for all athlete levels.

If you don’t have a designated gym towel and just use the spare ones you have at home, you’re missing out on the perks the best workout towels offer.

Unlike regular bathroom towels, athletic towels are softer and offer better liquid absorption, among other perks.

Gym towels are generally inexpensive if you avoid overpriced brand names, and there are plenty of low-cost options, so the best choice for you will mostly come down to preference and needs.

Without further ado, let’s start the list with my #1 best gym towel.

1. Rogue Fitness Gym Towel – Top Pick

Rogue Gym Towel
Rogue Fitness is a well-known U.S.-based brand trusted by athletes worldwide.
Their name is synonymous with high-quality gym equipment for home and public gyms at fair prices.

The Rogue Gym Towel is currently the best sweat towel in my collection and one I highly recommend.
It easily beats out affordable gym towels and stands tall even when compared to much pricier sports brand towels.

  • Material: Cotton Velour
  • Size: One size –17.75 x 31.5 inches
  • Color Palette: Gray, Black, Navy
  • Care Instructions: Cold temperature machine wash and low tumble dry with items of similar color
Rogue Fitness Gym Towel

photo by @roguefitness

The towel is made from 100% cotton velour, a material that is used in the highest quality bathroom garments.

It is very soft yet still textured enough that you can feel it comfortably cleaning your skin as you wipe your face, for example.
A cold temperature machine wash and low tumble dry will keep the material soft and color as good as new for years to come.

At 31.5 inches in length, it will easily cover backrests and seats of any exercise equipment, while the 17.75 width perfectly covers benches without letting too much material hang on the side.

39Final Score

Aesthetically, all three available color options look premium and will attract attention from fellow gym goers!

Material quality


  • Made from 100% cotton velour

  • The 17.75 inches in width fits perfectly over standard-sized benches

  • Premium aesthetic and feel

  • Made by a trusted U.S. fitness brand

Could be better:

  • Limited color options

  • More expensive compared to other options on the list

 2. Rainleaf Microfiber Towel - Runner-Up

microfiber gym towels

The second best sweat towel I tried recently is from the brand Rainleaf.
The towel is lightweight, compact, very absorbent, dries quickly, and is good for both indoor and outdoor exercising.
The soft microfiber it’s made of has exceptional foldability, meaning it can fit into nearly any bag space.
You can also pack and carry it in the reusable bag you get with each towel.

  • Material: Microfiber
  • Size: Six sizes - XS (12 x 24), S (16 x 32), M (20 x 40), L (24 x 48), Xl (30 x 60), XXL (40 x 72)
  • Color Palette: Army Green, Blue, Brick Red, Gray, Green, Marine Blue, Mint, Navy Blue, Orange, Purple, Yellow
  • Care Instructions: Cold machine wash, hang dry

Microfiber gym towels such as this one are made from quality materials yet are still quite affordable.

With six size choices and eleven color options, Rainleaf offers a lot of purchase variety.

The M and L sizes are recommended for gym use, however the S size may fit a smaller athlete or child perfectly, as well.

Each towel comes with a buttoned hanging loop that can quickly be fastened to air dry it.

The endings on the towel are hand sewn, which will prevent them from tearing and splitting on the sides and corners.

Every sized towel can absorb five times its weight in liquid, but dries fast, so you can comfortably use it to quickly take care of any drink spill.

38Final Score

Rainleaf also offers a lifetime warranty with each purchase, which is a nice bonus and commitment to customer satisfaction!

Material quality


  • Towels can absorb five times their weight in liquid

  • Lightweight and foldable material that can fill even the smallest bag space

  • The buttoned hanging loop opens up many hanging possibilities

  • Lifetime warranty on every purchase

Could be better:

  • Color releasing even after multiple washes

3. Sukeen Cooling Towel - Best Cooling Towel

Cooling Towel
Cooling towels are exceptional for outdoor exercises such as hiking or climbing, but they have been rising in popularity in indoor gyms as well.
They can make quite a difference during exercises where body heat tends to be highest, such as fast-paced cardio or aerobics.
If you’re regularly running on a treadmill, using an elliptical, or riding an indoor bike, a cooling towel may be the best option for you.

  • Material: Microfiber
  • Size: One size – 12 x 40 inches
  • Color Palette: Four colors per pack, thirteen different color combinations
  • Care Instructions: Gentle cold temperature machine wash, don’t bleach, air dry

The Sukeen cooling towel can be set up for use in less than a minute.
Simply soak it in, wring out excess water, then shake it a few times to remove droplets, and you’re ready to go.
As you work out and your body heat increases, the water in the towel evaporates and cools down the covered area.
The towel stays cool for up to three hours, depending on the conditions.

It’s also reusable without needing to dry first, so if you feel it heating up and need a refresher, simply repeat the setup process.
Wear it around your neck to moderate your temperature as you exercise, or gently hold it over your face to absorb heat and cool you down when you’re resting or finishing your workout.
Each towel comes with a plastic carrying pouch with a carabiner clip that can be attached to your gym bag, belt hole, travel backpack, etc.
At four towels per pack, each with its unique carry case, it’s hard to find a better deal on cooling towels than Sukeen.

37Final Score

At four towels per pack, each with its unique carry case, it’s hard to find a better deal on cooling towels than Sukeen..

Material quality


  • Cooling towels are exceptionally good for cardio exercises

  • Plastic carry pouch allows you to carry it pre-prepared and use on the go

  • Reusable without having to dry first

  • Thirteen color combinations

Could be better:

  • At 40 x 12 it can be quite large for a gym towel

4. 4Monster Camping Towels  - Best For Camping

Camping Towels
The 4Monster fast-drying soft microfiber towels are perfect for use in everything from camping, travel, sports, etc.
Each purchase comes with a durable EVA box for easy carrying and storing of your towels.
With twelve color choices - the most on the list - and six different sizes, there’s plenty of choice for athletes of all shapes and sizes and personal tastes.

  • Material: Microfiber
  • Size: Six sizes, inches - XS (12 x 20), S (15.8 x 31.5), M (20 x 40), L (23.6 x 47), XL (30 x 59), XXL (35 x 71)
  • Color Palette: Army Green, Blue, Brick Red, Gray, Green, Lake-Green, Navy Blue, Orange, Purple, Magenta, Red, Rose
  • Care Instructions: Machine washable in cold water, Do not bleach, Do not dry clean, Do not iron, Do not tumble dry
4Monster Camping Towels

Compared to similarly priced products, these towels are colored using a natural plant dye.
This means that after the first wash, the color won’t fade in time from use or subsequent washes.
The towels are made from 100% clean fabric that doesn’t release chemicals or have the common damp smell after use.
The smooth surface of the microfiber is designed to not absorb small particles such as sand, dirt, dust, and similar - all of which can quickly be removed by shaking it off the towel.
The company offers a 30-day money-back guarantee and a 12-month warranty for every purchase.

36Final Score

The towels are made from 100% clean fabric that doesn’t release chemicals or have the common damp smell after use.

Material quality


  • 12 unique colors, the most choice on the list

  • Natural plant dye that doesn’t fade

  • No damp smell when wet 

  • Smooth surface doesn’t retain particles like dirt and sand

    Detailed care instructions

Could be better:

  • At just 0.2 ounces in size, they can’t absorb as much liquid as other towels

The Bagail Basics Microfiber Towels are similar in design to the 4Monster towels with a few unique perks.
For starters, they come in eight different sizes, the most of all the products on this list.
The material they’re made of is light, compact, and absorbent.
It dries quickly and doesn’t emit the damp cloth smell wet towels tend to have.

  • Material: Microfiber
  • Size: XXS (12 x 24), XS (16 x 32), S (20 x 40), M (24 x 28), L (28 x 56), XL (32 x 64), XXL (36 x 72), XXXL (40 x 80)
  • Color Palette: Blue, Dark Gray, Fushcia, Green, Gray, Orange, Purple, Royal Blue, as well as four striped options exclusive for XXL and XXXL towels
  • Care Instructions: Machine wash, no fabric softener, tumble dry

They come in eight solid color choices, which isn’t the most on the list, but certainly offers decent purchase variety.
Each towel size - except the XXS and XS - has a usable zip pocket.
This is great if you need to leave something small that you don’t want to forget, which could fall out of your pocket during workouts - such as a headphone case or locker key.
The towels are incredibly lightweight and, according to the manufacturer, five times as light as a regular microfiber towel.
The plastic carry case that comes with every towel has air holes, so you can let it dry even on the go.

35Final Score

The towels are incredibly lightweight and, according to the manufacturer, five times as light as a regular microfiber towel.

Material quality


  • Eight different sizes

  • The plastic case has holes that air-dry the towel on the go

  • Each towel (except the XXS and XS) has a usable zip pocket

Could be better:

  • The unique striped patterns are only available in XL and XXL

Sweat Towel
Now that we've covered various towels with special properties and unique features, it's time for some basics.
If you’re looking for simple microfiber gym sweat towels, then the S&T INC. Would be my recommendation.
S&T stands for Schroeder & Tremayne, a company that’s been making household garments since 1915.

  • Material: Microfiber
  • Size: 16 x 27 inches
  • Color Palette: Gray, Light Gray, White, Olive Green, Purple, Honeycomb Black, Honeycomb Gray
  • Care Instructions: Machine wash

These towels won’t blow you away with special characteristics, but they offer amazing value for money.
They’re made from a basic soft microfiber with solid absorption properties that will get the job done for the majority of gym goers.
They come in a single standardized sizing, although slightly smaller than the average gym towel.
With each set coming in packs of six, these towels are very affordable, and you’ll have plenty of spares lying around for other use.
Personally, I liked the honeycomb patterned towels the most, as the texture felt nice and soft even when rubbed harder on the skin.

34Final Score

With each set coming in packs of six, these towels are very affordable, and you’ll have plenty of spares lying around for other use.

Material quality


  • Six pieces for one price makes them very affordable

  • The honeycomb pattern towels are unique

Could be better:

  • Single size option

Gym Towel
Last but not least, a pack of three basic gym-sized towels with multiple vibrant color options.
As expected for gym towels, the microfiber is soft and absorbent.
Although at 80% polyester, it has one of the rougher surfaces as far as products on this list go.

  • Material: Microfiber
  • Size: 16 x 32 inches
  • Color Palette: Black, Gray, White, Light Blue, Dark Blue, Purple, as well as combinations of each
  • Care Instructions: Cold temperature machine wash, air dry, no softener or bleach

The manufacturer recommends washing them separately before use - especially the darker towels - as they will release color on the first wash.
Care instructions are very basic and the same as most regular home towels: machine wash under 40 degrees, don’t use bleach or fabric softener, and air dry.
At just under 0.70 pounds per towel, these are quite easy to carry, and you won’t even notice them in your bag or over your shoulder.

With three color towels per pack, you have decent variety, and they can also be a good gift for a fellow gym goer.
As for the advantages, I like knurling. It is quite mild and gives a good feel. Also, the marks are dual for weightlifting and powerlifting, so you can use the bar for training the technique of various exercises effectively.
Also, if you need a short bar, this option is one of the best. It saves space in your home gym but has a rather long shaft to fit regular racks. On the other hand, the sleeves are short, so you can’t put several thick plates on them. After all, this bar is not meant for this purpose.

33Final Score

With three color towels per pack, you have decent variety, and they can also be a good gift for a fellow gym goer.

Material quality


  • Three times faster drying than regular towers is excellent considering the thickness

  • Vibrant colors with mixed purchase options

  • Easy and clear maintenance instructions

Could be better:

  • Rougher surface than other options, not for sensitive skin

What Are The Benefits Of Using Workout Towels?

✅ Keeping Yourself And The Workout Station Clean

Wiping yourself and the exercise equipment before, during, and after a workout is important.
If you work out at home, having a clean workout station the next time you want to exercise can affect your mood and motivation.
If you’re using a public gym or sharing your home equipment, the next person using the equipment will be thankful and, hopefully, reciprocate.

This keeps the gym more hygienic and safer.
Sweat itself is not known to carry diseases, but it can be a source of moisture that can create an environment for bacteria to grow.
However, sweat is not the only bodily fluid we leave behind on workout machines, as exhaling can leave behind respiratory droplets which can transfer Covid-19 and similarly transmitted diseases.

✅ Workout Towels Are A Convenient Hygienic Solution

Workout towels are compact and easy to carry, making them a convenient accessory for outdoor activities or trips to the gym.

By removing sweat, dirt, and other particles through wiping, they help you keep your preemptive hygiene up before you get to do a change of clothes, wash your face, shower, etc.

✅ Wiping Your Face From Sweat Keeps The Skin Clear

As you exercise, apart from sweating, you build up oil, dirt, and other bacteria on your skin, which can lead to skin imperfections such as acne.

To prevent this, proper hygiene is necessary before, during, and after workouts.
This means wiping your skin from sweat using clean gym sweat towels and, when necessary, rinsing your face.


When Do You Need A Workout Towel?

The short answer to when you need to have a gym towel for sweat removal is - always.
There are no drawbacks to having one on you at all times as you exercise.
Even if you’re not actively using it for your workout, you can just keep it by your side until you eventually need it.
Many public gyms have workout towels as part of mandatory equipment, apart from the usual clean shoes and clothing.

Some gyms won’t allow you to check in and rent a locker unless you show a clean towel on entry and, if you don’t bring your own, they’ll require you to rent one at the counter.
Many gyms already had this requirement for years, but those that didn’t slowly add it as part o Covid-19 safety protocols.
As for when you actually need to use it, it will depend on how much you’re sweating and whether you’re the only person occupying the equipment.

For example, wiping your palms and equipment handles between sets is always a good idea, as it will prevent you from losing your grip and potentially hurting yourself.
Once you’re done using a machine or barbell, wipe it to leave the workout station hygienic for the next person (or yourself when you come back, in the case of home gyms).
Placing a towel over the surface area where your body will touch the exercise equipment, such as a back or chest pad, can prevent you from having to clean it later.
Exercise towels are a must-have for cardio machines, as the nature of their exercise will have you sweating a lot more.
Wiping yourself will not only keep the machine clean, but sweat marks can leave slippery spots on things like treadmills and ellipticals, which can cause a slip.


What To Look For In Workout Towels?

1. Material Quality

Material quality is arguably the most important characteristic to look for in gym sweat towels.
Overall, the quality of the towel will correlate with its absorbency, durability, comfort, hygiene factor, and even looks.
A low quality towel will not only fail to keep the liquid in, it will tear more easily and lose softness faster.
It can also release its color which can stain your workout clothes or equipment, but also release toxic chemicals.
The best workout towels are made from soft cotton, microfiber, velour, or other premium materials.
Towels made from higher quality materials can withstand repeated use and washing without losing their shape, texture, or softness.
This also helps them keep the premium aesthetic over longer periods of time, which can lead to fewer replacements and spending less cash outlay.

Tips From the Champ

Select top-notch gym towels with premium materials for optimal absorbency and durability. Quality materials like soft cotton or microfiber maintain their texture and shape over time. Consider personal preference for softness, ensuring a comfortable experience, particularly for those with sensitive skin.

Olympic Weightlifting Champion

2. Absorbency

Absorbency of fitness towels refers to their ability to take in and hold (absorb) liquids.
You’ll mostly be using your gym towel for sweat removal, either from yourself or from the workout equipment.
Occasionally, you might have to deal with a drink spill and, in the case of plain water, you might even use the same towel for it.
If your gym sweat towels don’t hold in the liquid, feel wet to the touch, or even drip, then you need to get more absorbent ones.

The absorbency rating is usually directly tied to material quality, as better material tends to have better absorption.

3. Softness

Softness as a characteristic of fitness towels is often subjective.
Some people prefer very soft microfiber gym towels because of their comfort or in case they have sensitive skin.

However, some people prefer using a more rugged, textured surface, especially on their face, to get the exfoliated skin feeling after a workout.
Softness is especially preferable if you wipe yourself from sweat a lot during workouts, such as when performing cardio exercises.
Repeated wiping with a rough surface towel can easily lead to redness or even minor scratches.
best workout towel

4. Price VS Quality

At the end of the day, sweat towels for gym and home exercising are dispensable and, unless you go for a huge name brand, inexpensive.

For the average person, you don’t want to overspend on towels because they tend to get lost, torn, and worn out over time.

I always recommend getting multiple athletic towels to have spares.

This way, you won’t have to worry about your towel not being clean, in case you don’t find time to wash it between workouts.

The goal of these lists is to help you best spend your hard-earned money.

Even though some items have higher ratings than others, it doesn’t mean they’re necessarily worse.

Depending on your budget and preferences, one product may be more suited for you than another.

That’s why I always list multiple products and explain their pros and cons.


Are Gym Towels Worth It?

High-quality athletic towels will improve your workout experience. Wiping yourself and your equipment clean after each use is hygienic and will save you cleaning time later.

Do Microfiber Towels Absorb Sweat?

Yes, microfiber gym towels significantly outperform towels made from other common materials such as cotton. 

Should I Wash My Gym Towel After Every Use?

Typically, you should wash exercise towels after every use, especially if you use a public gym.
However, exceptions can be made with high-quality absorbing towels if you’ve barely used them during a home workout session.
Then you can get away with washing it after every two or three workouts, although rinsing to refresh it after use is still recommended for hygienic reasons.


Remember to always carry a gym towel on you when you exercise and make sure to wipe yourself and the equipment clean.

There are no drawbacks to doing this, and there are proven hygiene and health upsides to it.

I’ve tried hundreds of them throughout the years, from professional sports brands to convenience store towels.

The best gym towel of the ones I currently own is the Rogue Gym Towel.

Do you use a towel when you work out?

Do you have a favorite one you’d like to shout out?

Let me know in the comments below, and make sure to follow me on social media for more fitness content, such as workout tips and product reviews.


  1. "Is Your Workout Causing Your Acne?" American Academy Of Dermatology https://www.aad.org/public/diseases /acne/causes/workouts
  2.  "What’s So Great About Microfiber?" Western State https://wspehsu.ucsf.edu/wp-content/uploads/2015/10/FactSheet_Microfiber.pdf
  3. Elizabeth Pennisi "Microbiology. Bacteria are picky about their homes on human skin" Science. 2008 May 23;320(5879):1001. https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/1256702/
  4. Martin Novák, Jozef Breznický, Jana Kompaníková "Impact of hand hygiene knowledge on the hand hygiene compliance" Med Glas (Zenica). 2020 Feb 1;17(1):194-199.
  5. Ruifei Wang, Jin Chai, Bobo Luo "A review on slip boundary conditions at the nanoscale: recent development and applications" Beilstein J Nanotechnol. 2021 Nov 17:12:1237-1251.

Rogue Gym Towel
  • Author
  • Reviewer
Ihor Shymechko

Coach, PRO Olympic Weightlifter

Experience: 26 years

Best Results: Snatch - 208 kg,

C&J - 240 kg

My name is Ihor and I have been a professional weightlifter since 1996. With over 20 years of competition experience, my resume includes European Champion in 2009 and the silver medalist at 2011's Senior World Championships – 105kg division.

I competed at the 2008, 2012 and 2016 Summer Olympics.

After hanging up my own competitive lifting shoes, I decided to share my huge background as a coach. I am currently coaching multiple athletes who are competing at national and international competitions.

If you have any questions/suggestions/any other inquiry, you can reach out to us via email - reviews@torokhtiy.com

Oleksiy Torokhtiy

Olympic Weightlifting Champion

Experience: 21 years

Best Results: Snatch – 200 kg,

C&J - 240 kg

My name is Oleksiy Torokhtiy. I am a professional athlete with 20 years of experience in Olympic weightlifting. I have won multiple European, and World titles and have taken part in two Olympic Games (Beijing 2008, London 2012).

After finishing my career, I have committed myself to coach, and as of 2022, I’ve hosted 200+ weightlifting seminars all over the globe. I’m the founder of an international sportswear and accessories brand, Warm Body Cold Mind (my motto), author, and creator of a series of training programs and eBooks.

If you have any questions/suggestions/any other inquiry, you can reach out to us via email - reviews@torokhtiy.com

This article was written by our qualified author and proofread by an expert with proven experience. When writing the article we've used our expertise and data from authoritative, scientific, and evidence-based sources. The list of references is provided at the end of the article.

Our team of authors and experts includes professional athletes (Olympians, winners of European and World titles), PhDs in Sports Science, certified coaches, sports nutritionists, CSCSs, physiotherapists, and others. Read more about the team here, and more about how we test here.


  • Torokhtiy Team

    Hi @Aurbey!

    When choosing a towel for the gym, opt for one that is absorbent and quick-drying. Look for a towel made of microfiber or a blend of cotton and polyester, as these materials are known for their moisture-wicking properties. Consider a towel that is lightweight and compact, making it easy to carry in your gym bag. Additionally, choose a towel with a size that suits your needs, whether it’s a standard hand towel or a larger bath towel.

  • Aubrey

    What towel to bring to gym?

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