Pima Cotton or Turkish Cotton?

Should You Be Shopping for Pima Cotton or Turkish Cotton?

Looking to buy cotton towels? See our #1 recommendation HERE.

When you’re considering a cotton towel purchase there is a pretty decent chance that, after settling on a GSM rating, you’re going to narrow your choice down to Pima Cotton or Turkish Cotton. If you’ve made it this far you’ve done well to pick from two good choices. That said, you still have a choice to make. Here’s a little guidance…

Pima Cotton or Turkish Cotton : First A Little Education

Pima Cotton could just as well be called “American Cotton” as the name has it’s roots, literally, in American soil. The name Pima Cotton pays homage to the Pima Indians who, in the early 1900s, helped raise cotton on USDA experimental farms in Arizona. However, not all Pima cotton is grown in the US, and not all cotton grown in the US is Pima Cotton.

Pima Cotton or turkish Cotton : What makes Pima Cotton Special?

Only about 3% of the cotton grown in the US is Pima cotton. It is distinguished over the more abundant and lesser quality “upland cotton” by it’s superior length, strength and fineness. Quite simply, it’s the best cotton available in the USA and makes the best American made cotton towels. But buyer beware, just because the towel says “Pima Cotton” doesn’t mean you’re getting what you want…

Pima Cotton or Turkish Cotton : Pima Cotton vs Supima Cotton

When considering Pima Cotton towels you must be careful, particularly if you’re looking for a 100% American cotton towel, you need to read the label carefully and look for the phrase “100% Supima Cotton”.  A towel can claim to be a Pima Cotton towel yet not be 100% Pima Cotton (think of a blended towel of 50% Pima Cotton and 50% lesser quality upland cotton). Note that this towel could be marketed as “100% cotton” but not be a 100% Pima Cotton towel and therefore be inferior in quality.

To help consumers avoid this pitfall consumers need to shop for the trademarked Supima Cotton towels. When buying Supima Cotton towels you can be guaranteed that you are buying 100% American Pima cotton.

Pima Cotton or Turkish Cotton : What makes Turkish Cotton Special?

Now that we know a bit more about Pima Cotton (and know to shop for “Supima Cotton” only if we want a high quality 100% American made product), lets consider what makes Turkish Cotton a worthy opponent. Here goes…

As you can imagine, Turkish Cotton is grown in Turkey. Specifically it is grown in the Aegean part of the country. Turkish Cotton has gained favor due to its long fibers, high absorbency and soft touch. Similar to buying Pima or Supima Cotton towels the buyer need to be shopping for “100% Turkish Cotton” towels.

Looking to buy cotton towels? See our #1 recommendation HERE.

So How Do You Choose Between Pima Cotton or Turkish Cotton?

While it’s pretty tough to go wrong with either choice the fact of the matter remains that you do need to pick one or the other. To play that game you’ve got two options:

  1. DECIDE 1980s STYLE: Get in the car and drive to your nearest department store and rub your hands and face on both. You’ll feel the difference, maybe, but more likely your decision will be made by available color or pattern choices than anything else.
  2. DECIDE WEB STYLE: One of the greatest strengths of the internet is to be able to quickly aggregate the buying experiences of hundreds of people in a matter of seconds. Imagine, for example, standing in the towel section at Macy’s with 300 people who not only recently bought Supima Cotton towels or Turkish Cotton towels but have used them a few times and have a real world experience with them. Now imagine that you can instantly poll them with a simple question, “Which one would you recommend?” In this day and age that isn’t a pipe dream. As a matter of fact, there is an easy and fast way to make your decision.
  • Simply go to Amazon.com and search for your desired products.
  • Look for products that have AT LEAST 4 STARS and AT LEAST 30 ratings (the small number in parenthesis next to the stars) something like this: [an average 4 star rating from 36 total reviews] and have the Amazon Prime logo next to the price like this  [’cause that means if you’re a Prime member you get free shipping and even if you are not a Prime member it means the product is in stock in the Amazon warehouse and will ship very quickly and arrive in no time – and if there is a problem the return will be a breeze]

Looking to buy cotton towels? See our #1 recommendation HERE.

Consensus is that about 1 in 10 Amazon buyers writes a review. If that’s the case, a product with 30 reviews would have at least 300 total buyers. And since it’s human nature to go out of the way to provide negative reviews, if you find that 30 out of the 300 buyers that wrote a review went out of their way to say something very nice about the product (4 or more stars) they probably REALLY liked it and so will you.

Here are couple specific recommendations that meet all of our criteria for both Supima Cotton towels (100% Pima Cotton) and 100% Turkish Cotton towels.

Looking to buy cotton towels? See our #1 recommendation HERE.


The bottom line is that you can’t go wrong by selecting Pima Cotton or Turkish Cotton if you follow this simple guide and stick with the rule of thumb that the crowd is right and will show you the way.

Looking to buy cotton towels? See our #1 recommendation HERE.

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I'm Emily

Welcome to Nook, my cozy corner of the internet dedicated to all things homemade and delightful. Here, I invite you to join me on a journey of creativity, craftsmanship, and all things handmade with a touch of love. Let's get crafty!

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