What makes them work, and what’s the difference between the three types?
The first thing you’ll notice about any of the Sea to Summit towels is how soft they are. All three Sea to Summit towels are made of a super soft microfiber (70% polyester, 30% nylon for you technical types).
The second aspect of the towels is how absorbent they are – the microfiber (with its minute channels in the yarn) absorbs water in a way that natural fibers can’t. You can see a video here which shows the TekTowel soaking up water from a bowl – incredible stuff. To maintain this level of performance, keep the towels away from fabric softeners and dryer sheets, which clog up those micro-channels. And – for the first couple of laundry cycles, wash the towels separately from other items to prevent color bleeding onto light-colored fabrics. With that in mind, all three towels are easy-care machine washable.
The Pocket Towel is the most compact. It’s available in three sizes: Small, Large and (as part of the TravellingLight range), Extra Large. The Small packs away in a pouch which measure 3” x 2.75” x 1.75” (7.5 x 7 x 4.5cm) so you can take it with you anywhere. One consumer on a retailer website titled their review “Hold me closer, Tiny Dryer,” which indicates how they feel about the towel, but does leave you humming Elton John for the rest of the day. The Pocket Towel feels a little like a silk scarf – but one which soaks up a lot of water and dries quickly.
The DryLite Towel is the ideal synthesis of quick drying, light weight and packed volume. It is more absorbent than the Pocket Towel, but takes up just a little more room in your bag. It’s available in five sizes from hand towel to beach towel, and has a ‘microsuede’ finish.
The TekTowel is the most absorbent . The microfiber has a ‘terrycloth’ finish – similar to a towel you would have at home. The greater surface area (compared to the other two towels) makes this the most absorbent of the three. The five sizes of TekTowel – hand towel to beach towel – are heavier than the equivalent sized DryLite Towel, but still light and compact enough for many, many outdoor activities including drying the dogs off after a swim at the lake, or cleaning up the kids after soccer practice.
So – whether you’re off to surf Manly Beach, backpacking through South East Asia, packing for a ski tour in the Tetons, or hitch-hiking throughout the known galaxy, now you know which towel to take with you.