Beating the heat can get tricky, especially when it’s summer and all you want to do is spend time outside. Whether you’re running up that devil of a hill on your regular route, on a long hike through the woods in August or sweating your heart out in a hot yoga class, by the end you probably want to dump your head in a bucket of ice water. That option may be available to you, but if you want something a bit quicker and more environmental, try out a cooling towel instead.
What is a cooling towel? Cooling towels are designed to maximize the cooling powers of evaporation and cool you down with just a bit of water anywhere. They’re convenient, built for sport and are an inexpensive way to bring an instant temperature decrease with you as you move. They’re useful for those with disabilities that are more affected by heat, those recovering from surgery and need cooling therapy, women going through menopause and even pets who need a quick way to cool themselves off on longer walks!
As we move through the ebbing and flowing of August heat waves — some of us may have access to a lake, pond, beach or pool that we can jump into to beat the summer heat. Some of us, however, don’t have that option and need more inventive ways to regulate our temperatures on our adventures or right at home. Cooling towels are a great way to do this, and, like regular towels, can be used again and again. No battery power, no additions to your electric bill, just a quick dunk in the sink and you’ll be feeling cooler by the second. Here are the best cooling towels for beating the heat this summer and beyond.
1. U-pick Cooling towel 4-Pack
These cooling towels are made of ice hyper-evaporative material and will stay chilled for up to three hours at a time. The fiber weave is super absorbent and retains the water so you stay cool. They’re made of comfortable, pliable material that’s soft to the touch and lightweight even when holding water. They’re also great for wiping sweat as they cool and provide 50 SPF protection against the sun’s rays. They’re also very easy to use and activate, it only takes one minute of soaking and wringing out excess water before they’re ready to use. You can also reuse them again and again after the water has evaporated fully and the cooling effect has subsided. This 4-pack comes with four towels of varying colors, each of which come with their own carrying case and carabiner for easy attachment and portability.
2. Sukeen Cooling Towel 4-Pack
This 4-pack of cooling towels from Sukeen is another great option if you’re looking to try out the cooling towel trend. They provide instant cooling relief through breathable mesh material that uses moisture to draw heat away from the body. These towels are chemical-free and perfect for use during sports to prevent heat stroke, wipe up sweat and provide some sun protection during your outdoor adventures. Each towel comes with its own waterproof plastic pouch, just like in the option above, and the towels stay chilled for up to three hours pending extreme temperatures or conditions. You can wrap one around your neck, forehead, lay the towel over your shoulders or even drape it over your face for an instant cooling effect.
3. foramor Cooling Towel 4-Pack
These affordable cooling towels from Amazon have great reviews and are large enough to cover a good portion of a yoga mat or stretch out across your shoulders to provide cooling relief. The cooling effect is instant after a quick soak in water and the high-tech fibers built into the towels retain and regulate the water inside for optimal cooling and drying. You also don’t have to soak them and can use them as a sweat towel during your workout. They have a 50+ UV index protection rating and are made of a 100% high-quality microfiber blend that’ll take care of your skin as it cools you down. They’re also easy to carry and space-saving in your outdoor pack, gym bag or suitcase.
4. Chill Pal PVA Cooling Towel
BEST FOR SPORTS
This Chill Pal towel is one of the highest performance chilling towels out there due to its high-grade, extra thick PVA fabric that has evaporative technology built in that holds way more water and keeps it cooler than your standard cooling towel brand. It has no chemicals or cooling agents, but instead uses the basics that work to cool you down and doesn’t question them. There’s no secret or hack here, just a super high-quality towel that has a thin, dynamic design great for wearing during your run, hike, beach day or session on the golf course. This cooling towel also has a smaller design than others, making it easier to bring with you and carry around without getting too heavy or bulky, and it comes in three different color choices for variety.
5. Cool Pup Cooling Pet Towel
BEST FOR PETS
We’re not the only ones who get hot during outdoor activities — our furry friends do too, and they have a full coat on! This cooling towel is made very similarly to the ones for humans, and is perfect for draping over four-legged bodies for an instant cooling effect. Slow the panting and give them the relief you’re craving as well so you both can relax and enjoy you time spent in the sun.
6. Ailawuu Cooling Towel 6-Pack
These cooling towels are made of thinner, lightweight material and are great for travel as they won’t take up too much space in your suitcase. Each towel is made of evaporative material that amplifies the cooling effect of your standard damp towel and is high-performance and built for activities like hiking, running, yoga and time spent in the gym. Each towel in this 6-pack was also made to be worn in a variety of ways including as a headband, over your shoulders, tied around your neck and across your forehead. Each towel measures 39″ x 11″, slightly smaller than other options on this list and provides UV protection along with the cooling effects.
7. Mission Original Cooling Towel
BEST FOR YOGA
This cooling towel from Mission Original is great for all activities including yoga, as it’s perfectly sized and built to spread out across your yoga mat and keep cool during class. Simply dunk it in water, wring it out and snap it a few times before you bring it into the studio with you or onto your mat at home, and you can enjoy the evaporative effects each time to rest your forehead on the ground in child’s pose or during your final resting posture at the conclusion of class. The material is durable and soft, so you’ll still enjoy the feel of it even after many washes and classes, and the towel activates in under 30 seconds so you won’t be rushed at the beginning of class. It also stays cool for two hours, so there’s no need to worry about it warming up before class is over.
8. MISSION Cooling Hoodie Towel
BEST FOR SUN PROTECTION
MISSION also took the cooling towel design to the next level by actually making a hood that’s made of the same refreshing material. It’s great for UV protection as it covers your head, the back of your neck and sides of your face so you can stay cooled off and active longer. Once properly activated, this cooling hood activates in as little as 30 seconds and drops to 30 degrees below the average body temperature for optimal cooling effects. You can drape it over your head or tuck it up and under a hat for a more performance-oriented position. It’s machine-washable and fully reusable, only taking an additional dunk in water to reactivate once it’s warmed up and the evaporative qualities have worn off.
9. SYOURSELF 4-Pack Galaxy Cooling Towels
Want to mix it up a bit? Take your cooling towel accessory to the next level with this galaxy pattern 4-pack from SYOURSELF. They’ve got the same cooling effect as other towels on this list and come in a large size of 40″ x 12″ so you’ll be covered even on the hottest of days. These towels have also been RoHS approved for being eco-friendly and contain Softcool Extreme material that dries soft and won’t drip water as it cools you down. The cooling effect of these towels lasts for several hours at a time and can also be used with pets who want to rock an outer-space aesthetic for the day.
10. MISSION Cooling Tapered Headband
If you’re planning on using your cooling towel as a headband you might as well get something that’s designed specifically for that purpose. This cooling headband is made of MISSION’s same cooling material and has an athletic design for keeping hair out of your face during intense activity or time spend in hot temperatures outside. This headband tapers from 4″ to 1″ for an athletic fit that’s comfortable to wear for long periods of time. It also stays cool for up to 2 hours and works with your body’s natural cooling mechanisms to absorb sweat and stay activated throughout your workout.