What Are The Different Types Of Paper Towels?

by | May 3, 2024 | paper towel | 0 comments

What Are The Different Types Of Paper Towels?

In today's fast-paced world, hygiene is a top priority for both homes and businesses alike. Paper hand towels play a crucial role in maintaining cleanliness in restrooms, kitchens, and other areas where hygiene is paramount. Understanding the different types of paper towels available can help you make an informed decision for your needs. Here, we break down the various options to help you determine which paper towels are best suited for your situation.

types of paper towels

types of paper towels

Types Of Paper Hand Towels

Single-Fold Paper Towels

singel fold paper towel

singel fold paper towel

Single-fold paper towels are one of the most common types of paper towels. They are designed to be dispensed one at a time from a suitable dispenser, reducing waste and ensuring that each towel is clean and untouched. These towels are generally economical and are a great fit for settings where basic hand-drying needs are to be met, such as in office restrooms or retail locations.

Multi-Fold Paper Towels

multifold paper towel

multifold paper towel

Multi-fold paper towels are folded in three layers and are designed to interlock, which allows for continuous dispensing. They are compact, efficient, and can fit into multi-fold dispensers that save space. These towels are particularly popular in commercial environments because they offer a balance between cost-effectiveness and functionality.

C-Fold vs Multifold

c fold paper towel

c fold paper towel

Within the multi-fold category, you'll encounter C-fold and Z-fold paper towels. C-fold towels are folded in a "C" shape and tend to be slightly larger. Z-fold towels, on the other hand, are folded in a "Z" shape and can be pulled from dispensers without touching the next towel, making them a more hygienic option. They are usually thicker and more absorbent than other folded towels, but they can also be more expensive and bulky. Multifold paper towels are usually thinner and more compact than C-fold towels, but they can also be less absorbent and prone to tearing.

Center-Pull Paper Towels

center pull paper towels

center pull paper towels

Center-pull paper towels are designed to be pulled from the center of a roll, which helps in minimizing the risk of cross-contamination since users only touch the towel they're using. These are ideal for food service locations or any setting where hygiene is a critical concern.

High-Capacity Paper Towel Rolls

private label paper towel manufacturers

For high-traffic areas such as public restrooms or large kitchens, high-capacity paper towel rolls are a practical solution. These large rolls can handle significant usage between refills, which can help to reduce maintenance time and cost. They come in a variety of qualities and ply counts to match different user preferences.

Key Features And Pros/Cons Of Each Towel Types of Paper Towels

Each type of paper hand towel has its own advantages and disadvantages, depending on the key features that users look for. Some of the most important features are:

  • Absorbency: This refers to how much water or liquid a paper towel can soak up. Absorbency is influenced by factors such as ply, material, texture, and embossing. Generally, thicker and softer paper towels have higher absorbency than thinner and harder ones.
  • Strength: This refers to how well a paper towel can resist tearing or breaking when wet or dry. Strength is influenced by factors such as ply, material, bonding, and coating. Generally, multi-ply and hardwound paper towels have higher strength than single-ply and rolled ones.
  • Eco-friendliness: This refers to how environmentally friendly a paper towel is in terms of production, consumption, and disposal. Eco-friendliness is influenced by factors such as material, source, process, biodegradability, and recyclability. Generally, paper towels made from recycled or renewable materials have higher eco-friendliness than those made from virgin or synthetic materials.
  • Cost: This refers to how much money a paper towel costs per unit or per use. Cost is influenced by factors such as quality, quantity, size, brand, and packaging. Generally, cheaper paper towels have lower quality and higher quantity than more expensive ones.

Market Share And Sales Data For Top Paper Towel Products

According to a report by Grand View Research, the global paper towel market size was valued at USD 12.75 billion in 2019 and is expected to grow at a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 6.1% from 2020 to 2027. The report also states that folded towels dominate the market share with over 45% in 2019, followed by rolled towels with over 35%, hardwound towels with over 10%, and others with less than 10%.

Some of the leading folded towel brands in the market are Bounty, Sparkle, and Brawny. According to Statista, Bounty was the top selling paper towel brand in the United States of all types of paper towels  in 2020 with sales of USD 1.09 billion, followed by Sparkle with USD 0.36 billion, and Brawny with USD 0.35 billion.

Reasons Why Folded Towels Are Most Popular

Folded towels are the most popular types of paper towels for several reasons. First, they offer a balance of absorbency, strength, cost, and eco-friendliness that suits most users’ needs and preferences. Second, they are more sanitary than rolled or hardwound towels because they reduce cross-contamination and overuse by dispensing one sheet at a time. Third, they fit most dispensers in many bathrooms because they have a standard size and shape that can be easily adjusted.


When selecting different types of paper towels, consider factors such as dispenser compatibility, the volume of traffic in your facility, and your sustainability goals. Whether you're managing a high-traffic airport bathroom or a small office kitchen, there's a type of paper hand towel designed to meet your needs. With the right selection, you can ensure a hygienic and efficient experience for users while managing costs effectively.

Related Products

toilet paper

Toilet Paper

paper towel

Paper Towel

printed paper napkins

Paper Napkin

facial tissue

Facial Tissue