Most camping towels suck. The Fox Outfitters MicroSoft Towel (Amazon Link) does not. Campers and especially ultralight campers are picky. We want all of the functionality of a home item with 1/3 the weight. Which means that compromise has to be made somewhere. In this MicroSoft Towel review we will see how it compares to other towels on the market.
The compromise made by many camping towels is comfort. You get a lightweight absorbent towel that feels like sandpaper. The material used wants to stick to your skin. Even more so when wet. Unlike a cotton towel that glides across wet skin easily.
So Why don’t we just bring a normal cheap cotton towel? For a few reasons. A cotton towel that is thick enough will weigh too much to backpack in. Yes you could get a really cheap thin one. But don’t! I remember showering at a friends house once that had the thinnest towels ever. Like a giant ass rag. It filled with water and became useless with more than half my body left to dry off. That towel ended up just moving around the water. I had to use my shirt to finish drying off.
Another reason to not get a cotton towel is drying time. It will take forever for a cotton towel to dry. If it does where you are. If you are in a very humid environment then your cotton towel will probably not get completely dry. Which means than you will have to keep it hanging in a sunny place with good air flow 24/7 just to combat the moisture. I would prefer to use it, hang it up a while then pack it back up.