Last Updated on September 21, 2022 by The Filtery Staff
A bathed little one, fresh out of the water with soft chuckles and a toothless grin, is one of parenting’s most precious moments. It’s in those little moments when you feel you’d do anything and everything to protect your little one and give them the best.
Of course, one small thing you can do for your baby is to use natural and organic materials for their clothing, bedding, and towels. You can use a hooded towel to keep your tiny tot’s head warm after bathing, and make sure it’s free of toxic chemicals in order to foster healthy growth.
In this article, we’re going to talk about why non-toxic and natural baby towels are a better option than your more “conventional” options, and then we’ll give you our favorite brands to shop from.
Also, if you’re looking for some other types of non-toxic and organic towels for your home, here are some more guides to help out:
- The best super-soft & organic bath towels
- Our picks for organic robes (for adults!)
- Our favorite eco & ethical beach towels
- The best non-toxic towels for the kitchen
This post contains affiliate links, which means we may earn a small commission if you choose to make a purchase. We only make recommendations that are genuine and meet our standards.
Featured Image Credit: Natemia
Why Should You Consider Organic Materials for Your Baby/Toddler Towels & Washcloths?
To understand why organic towels tend to be better for our little ones, let’s first talk about how they’re different from polyester and conventional cotton towels (which is what you’ll usually find in stores). Their significant differences lie in how they impact the environment and the user’s health.
A lot of the hooded baby towel brands you’ll find in stores are either made using synthetic polyester or conventional cotton.
Conventional cotton is mainly grown from GMO seeds. It is treated with many insecticides and pesticides to prevent and counter pest attacks. These chemicals leach into the soil, contaminating groundwater and changing the soil structure. If it is grown on the same land repeatedly without giving it time to rest, the land could become barren after a few cycles (think Dust Bowl!).
Organic cotton has a lower environmental impact as it uses natural fertilizers and pesticides (or even not at all). These fertilizers are not only safer, but they also biodegrade easily since they are derived from plants, animals, and minerals. Organic cotton also doesn’t use GMO seeds.
Polyester baby towels are basically just made from plastic. This is not the most eco-friendly option, not only because it’s a petroleum byproduct but also because these towels won’t biodegrade at the end of their lives. Instead, they will just shed into smaller and smaller microplastic pieces, which can wreak havoc on both environmental and human health.
As conventional cotton is treated with many pesticides, the workers are constantly exposed, worsening their health. Traces of these pesticides can also remain on the fiber and make their way to the fabric, causing skin irritation, among other problems. Organic cotton doesn’t have these chemicals, making is safer for your baby’s skin (especially if they struggle with eczema or similar conditions).
Conventional cotton marketed as “antimicrobial” and “anti-wrinkle” is usually treated with toxic forever chemicals and can be saturated with formaldehyde, so beware of products with these kinds of claims.
Lastly, organic cotton is handpicked, which often means it has longer fibers that make it softer and more durable.
What to Look For In Non-Toxic Baby Bath Towels
Now that we understand why organic bath towels are usually a better choice, it is time to pick one! It can be overwhelming to figure out which hooded baby towel is best for you and your little one, so here are some things to consider as you shop:
1. The Fabric
A towel can be made from several different kinds of organic cotton, including Egyptian and Turkish.
At the end of the day, these different kinds of cotton are really just indicative of where the cotton is grown, so there isn’t really that much of a difference in the end product.
Again, the important thing is that the baby towel you choose is organic and non-toxic. This will decrease the likelihood of it irritating your little one’s skin, especially if you have a baby or toddler with extra sensitive skin or allergies.
Other great eco-friendly materials that can be used for towels include linen and hemp. But for baby hooded towels, we’ve only been able to find organic cotton ones for now.
2. The Construction
How the towel is woven determines its finish. The popular methods of weaving are:
- Combed cotton has strong and long threads woven for durability and to reduce pilling.
- Ringspun cotton has long and short fibers for smoother, finer yarn.
- Terrycloth is made with larger thread loops and woven with extra yarn.
- Waffle weave has a honeycomb pattern that increases the surface area increasing absorbency.
- Zero-twist fibers have long-staple cotton woven without twisting, making it soft and light.
All of these are great options and it really just comes down to personal preference!
3. Size and Weight
Naturally, you want a big enough towel for your little one to use for a couple of years. The weight of a towel is measured in GSM (grams per square meter), which measures density. The denser it is, the more its weight and absorbency. It will also take longer to dry.
For your little ones, you want an organic hooded towel that isn’t too heavy to make them uncomfortable or too light that it can’t keep your baby warm. A GSM of 300-800 is usually perfect.
Although they have their shortcomings, looking for third-party certifications can be a good way to check whether or not your baby towel is truly non-toxic and/or sustainable. Some of the certifications to look for include:
- OEKO-TEX Standard 100 Certification: The finished baby towel has been tested against a long list of toxins.
- Fair Trade Certification: The towel production complies with social, environmental, and economic standards and is done through sustainable means. The workers are also working in safe conditions.
- Global Organic Textile Standard (GOTS): Towels are free of harmful chemicals and are made from organic materials. Products are made using fair practices that adhere to certain sustainability and pollution standards. The GOTS certification also prohibits child labor and ensures quality working conditions and a living wage for those involved in its production.
- Made in Green Certification: Towels are made under sustainable practices and free of all harmful substances.
- MADE SAFE: This is not as widely used (yet!) but it’s one of our favorite safety certifications because it is pretty strict when it comes to the materials and ingredients allowed.
Our Favorite Non-Toxic & Organic Baby Towels and Washcloths
Now that you understand what you need to look for to filter out the best options, here are some of the best baby bath towels and organic baby washcloths:
Options: Hooded towels, towel/blanket combo, washcloths, robes
Price Range: $20 (pack of washcloths) – $36 (robes)
Material: GOTS organic cotton and bamboo
Made in: Turkey
Natemia is a family business founded in 2016 to bring high-quality, natural, and affordable baby essentials to parents. You’ll find a range of cozy organic nursery essentials and premium bath linens that simplify prepping for your new baby.
All their products are Global Organic Textile Standard (GOTS) certified, which means the products are grown without pesticides, the fabric has not been treated with bleach or formaldehyde, and it only contains non-toxic dyes.
Natemia’s products also include crib sheets, swaddle blankets, and sleep sacks, all made of GOTS certified organic cotton. Their hooded towels are 40″ X 30.”
Options: Hooded and standard baby towels and washcloths (with a monogram option!), robes and cover-ups
Price Range: $22 (pair of washcloths) – $72 (robe)
Material: Organic cotton
Made in: Portugal & Atlanta
Weezie’s organic cotton towels are OEKO-TEX-certified, meaning they’ve been tested against a list of toxic substances. Their products are made in a family-owned factory and then finished in Atlanta by their team of in-house embroidery experts.
Not only are Weezie’s towels organic, but they’re also made from long-staple cotton and woven with spinning technology that traps air within each fiber, making them extra soft and fluffy.
Weezie’s towels are mostly available in white with pink, blue, or gray accented borders. They offer the option to monogram your little one’s name on them (making them a perfect baby shower gift!). Their robes come in various different colors and patterns.
On its website, you can also shop for makeup towels, washcloths, hand towels, bath towels, and bath sheets, each with seven color options for piping around the border.
Options: Hooded poncho
Material: Organic cotton
Made in: India
Are these organic cover-ups for kids not the cutest!? These are a great option for toddlers and older kids, whether they’re just getting out of the bath or the pool.
Zestt Organics was initially created by two women to provide comfort during travel without impacting the environment. They later branched to everyday use products such as towels, scarves, and blankets.
Not only do their ponchos come with the GOTS certified seal, but Zestt also ensures that the production process of their textiles is ethical, fair, and free from child labor from seed to store.
Options: Baby bath towels, hooded towels, washcloths
Material: Organic cotton
The entire line of products from Honest Baby Clothing (which is available at Target!) is made from super soft, sustainably sourced, 100% GOTS certified organic cotton. The products are free of synthetic pesticides and harmful dyes, making them great for delicate skin and safe sleep.
The Honest Company is one of our favorite brands for non-toxic products for the whole family. It was founded by Jessica Alba, a mom of three, with a simple purpose: to create safe and effective products for her family and others. To achieve this, the company is always forward-thinking, always exploring and evolving to improve their use of renewable resources – from sourcing organic cotton to recycled materials for packaging.
In addition to baby towels, Honest also carries pajamas, clothing, bedding, gifts, diapers, shampoo and personal care products, and more.
Options: Hooded towels
Material: Organic cotton
HART+LAND’s Organic Solid Muslin Hooded Bath Towel has more of a blanket feel (as opposed to a typical plush towel), so it has a different texture than a lot of the other options listed here.
It comes in several different colors and is perfect for babies and kids up to six years. These baby bath towels are both GOTS and OEKO-TEX certified, meaning they’re free of harmful substances such as formaldehyde and toxic dyes.
The founder of HART+LAND is a mother of three, so you can expect the towels to be perfect for your little one. She founded this brand as a resource for parents who are passionate about natural parenting and non-toxic living.
Options: Hooded towel and wash mit set
Material: Organic cotton
Made in: India
Their Air Weight® Organic Baby Hooded Towel Set comes with a hooded towel for your little one and a wash mitt for an easier bath time.
Coyuchi’s baby bath towel and wash mitt come with three different certifications: GOTS, Fair Trade, and MADE SAFE (which is one of the most strict certifications in terms of material and ingredient safety!).
Best for babies aged zero to 24 months, these slightly lighter weight but still super-absorbent towels come in “Dune” (which is an off-white color) and “French Blue.”
In the first couple of years of a baby’s life, their skin and respiratory system are particularly delicate. That is why organic cotton is such an excellent option for them. Also, it is only through teaching them the importance of the environment that they can actively protect it from a young age. Protect your little one and do your part by grabbing an organic hooded baby towel and washcloth set from one of the above brands.
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Image Credits: All product photos belong to respective brands.