Peshtemals, also known as fouta towels and hamman towels, are traditional towels made in Turkey. Soft, robust and versatile, they have been handcrafted for hundreds of years and today make for popular daily companions thanks to all their amazing properties. Perfect for life at home and on the road, they’re our favourite go-to essentials for comfort and convenience wherever you are.

History of Peshtemals

In Turkish, peshtemal (sometimes written as pestemal or peshtamal) is spelt “peştemal”. Around for hundreds of years, it’s believed that the word peştemal derives from the Persian for “covering”. A staple of Anatolian culture, peshtemals are thought to be one of the oldest textiles in the world and have played a part in hammam etiquette (traditional Turkish baths) since the 14th Century. Designed to be lightweight, highly absorbent and fast-drying, they were used as clothing or covers, helping bathers to maintain their privacy as well as to dry off and protect clothing. In later centuries, peshtemals were woven with more ornate patterns and styling for royals and courtiers, with colours and designs indicating which area or region the wearers were from.

How Peshtemals Are Made

Peshtemals have been made for hundreds of years in Turkey by artisan weavers, with many of the same families passing on the tradition through the centuries and generations. One of the oldest techniques in the world, these towels are made from 100% cotton and are woven on manually operated looms, often in the home of the weaver. Pile-free, they are woven into a thin, flat rectangular shape, which helps to keep them light, fast-drying and odour-free. While there are many places that produce peshtemals in Turkey, one of the most famous is in Denizli – the textile heart of the country.

The Benefits and Uses of Peshtemals

Peshtemals are large, flat and super-soft towels made from 100% cotton – a natural material that is hypoallergenic, breathable and low-maintenance. As they are flat-woven, peshtemals have the wonderful advantage of being really lightweight and compact, meaning they can be easily transported or worn without feeling cumbersome. Of course, they’re also highly absorbent and fast-drying, two properties that make them ideal for using after showers or baths or during long days by the sea.

Strong and durable, peshtemals are loved for their versatility, practicality and innate stylishness. They’re perfect as towels, wraps and sarongs, and can also be used as table runners, throws, blankets and bags. Maintaining their shape and easy to look after, they can be used for years, and actually become softer and more absorbent with time. Whether you’re headed to the beach or looking for some extra comfort at home, take a peshtemal with you and enjoy a little bit of luxury wherever life takes you.

Browse Our Peshtemals

If you are looking for your first peshtemal or would like to expand your collection, we have a range of lovely peshtemals in stock. Available in different colours, you can choose the perfect one (or two or three) to accompany you or gift to a loved one and enjoy the comforts of these must-have essentials, naturally perfected over hundreds of years of craftsmanship.