Single-ply vs. two-ply towels; what’s the difference?

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Hotels require a lot of towels, but choosing the right towel isn’t always straightforward. As you make purchasing decisions for your hotel or industrial laundry facility, it’s helpful to understand key towel construction details, including ply.

What is ply?

When talking about towels, ply indicates the number of strands of yarn twisted together to create a single thread. The threads are woven together to create towels, sheets and other linens. Ply plays a role in a towel’s features, such as absorbency and durability.

Single-ply vs. two-ply towels

The most common towel ply types are single-ply towels and double-ply towels.

What are single-ply towels?

Single-ply, or one-ply, means that the thread used to weave the towel contains a single strand of yarn. The result is typically a thinner, less durable towel. The tradeoff may be a more affordable towel.

What are two-ply towels?

Double-ply, or two-ply, means that the thread used to weave the towel contains two strands of yarn. The plying process is similar to braiding; the resulting strand is thicker and more durable. In turn, the resulting fabric—the towel—is also thicker, denser and more durable.

Plus, according to Red Land Cotton, two-ply towels are less prone to thinning and shedding over time. That means better longevity for commercial settings like hotels and resorts. And, as is the case with two-ply toilet paper or paper towels, two-ply towels offer higher absorbency.

Other tips for choosing hotel towels

In general, two-ply towels offer more benefits than single-ply hotel towels. However, more goes into creating a towel than simply the ply. So, when choosing the best hotel towels, the single-ply vs. two-ply towel debate is merely one part of your decision. Review the following resources to see what else you should know before purchasing towels:

Need help with choosing the right towel? Simply give us a call at 800.421.6599 or email us at [email protected].

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