Bowling Towels

Bowling Towel

While bowling is often seen as a leisure activity, there are a host of competitive bowlers looking for every advantage possible. For these participants, there are a few crucial pieces of equipment that are necessary to achieve success; one of these items being bowling towels.

What Are Bowling Towels Used for?

Bowling towels are typically used for wiping and cleaning bowling balls. During a game it is common for a ball to accumulate oil from the hand, dirt from the floor, and even grease from the ally. Using a bowling towel aids the bowler in achieving a smoother and cleaner roll.  Additionally, bowling towels are important in order to maintain a bowling ball. There are many different types of bowling towels. They can be made out of cotton, leather, or even microfiber. They also range in color and even personalizations such as embroidery.

Things to Consider

When looking for bowling towels, you'll want to consider the following:

  • What will you be using the towel for?
  • How frequently do you bowl?
  • How many bowling balls will you need to dry?
  • How much money do you have to spend on bowling towels?
  • Are there certain colors or materials that you prefer?


There are different types of bowling towels and while they all get the same job done, some bowlers have a preference based on their characteristics.

Bowling Shammy / Chamois

Bowling shammy is small enough to fit into the palm of your hand. They come in different shapes ranging from square to round, as well as an assortment of different materials. Some are made from cowhide or leather, while others are made out of microfiber and synthetics. The bowling shammy is ideal for absorbing oil and dirt. 

Microfiber Towel

Microfiber towels also aid in removing any unwanted build-up on bowling balls. Microfiber towels are also helpful for bowlers; many use them to wipe the sweat off their hands during games. These towels also are useful for shining up bowling balls. With a little water to moisten it, these towels will have a bowling ball looking brand new, removing scuffs and light cosmetic wear and tear. 

Cotton Towel

Cotton towels are best for cleaning and removing unwanted grime from bowling balls. These towels are durable when made with quality cotton. The difference between these towels is that they are typically larger in comparison to other bowling towels. This makes for a bigger cleaning surface, however keeping these towels handy might prove a bit more difficult.


Bowling towels can be made of an assortment of different materials, including cotton, leather, and polyester.

  • Cotton: Cotton is very absorbent. It is ideal for deep cleaning and soaking up moisture. Cotton towels are both durable and easily machine washable.
  • Leather: Leather is a durable material that comes directly from animal hides. It is also best for absorbing oil effectively. While durable, it is important to hand wash leather in order to preserve it.
  • Polyester: Polyester is a synthetic material known for its softness, affordability, and stretching capabilities. Polyester bowling towels may not be as absorbent as cotton, but are still effective at removing dirt and other debris. Polyester towels tend to be cheap and easy to wash.  


There are many brands to choose from when it comes to bowling towels. Some of the most popular brands include Storm, Brunswick, and Hammer.

  • Storm: Storm has a small selection of bowling towels including, microfiber, woven, shammy, and seesaw bowling towels. The seesaw towel is very interesting because it cradles the ball and requires a bit of a seesaw motion in order to clean, hence the name.
  • Brunswick: Brunswick has a larger selection of bowling towels ranging from leather shammy, micro-suede, microfiber see-saw, shammy pads, and microfiber pads. Their selection of pads are smaller than towels, making it easy and small enough to fit into the palm of your hand.
  • Hammer: Hammer has the narrowest selection of towels, offering only premium towels and shammy pads. While the selection isn’t much, their product designs are unique and utilize high quality materials. 


Some of the most important considerations to keep in mind when buying a bowling towel are durability, cost, and size.


While bowling towels typically last a long time, there are some types that are more durable than others. Shammys are long-lasting, while microfiber towels tend to wear out after a few uses and washes. In order to preserve a towel, it must be well maintained throughout its usage and cleaned in a fashion that’s appropriate for the materials used. 


Towels range in price from $3 for a single microfiber to upwards of $70 for a multipack. Quality, brand name, and quantity are all factors when it comes to pricing. Materials are a big consideration for cost as well. A microfiber rag is going to be much cheaper than a leather shammy due to its qualities and lifespan. 


On average, most bowling towels come in dimensions around 10”x8”, give or take a few inches. Opting for a larger towel can make cleaning your bowling ball easier, as there is less of a chance for your fingers to come in contact with the clean ball. 


Can you wash a bowling towel?

Yes, bowling towels are washable. While some are strictly hand wash only, there are many towels, such as microfiber, which are easily machine washable. Whether a towel requires a machine wash or hand wash is something to keep in mind when purchasing a new bowling towel. If you do not want to machine wash your bowling towels, they can be hand washed in the sink with warm water and a light detergent.

What are the different kinds of bowling towels?

The different kinds of bowling towels consist of bowling shammies, microfiber towels, and cotton towels. While they have different names, they all accomplish the same tasks. The bowling shammy is best for absorbing oil and grease. Microfiber towels are ideal for cleaning and shining up bowling balls. Cotton towels are durable and usually larger in size.

What are the benefits of using a bowling towel?

Using a bowling towel aids the participant in cleaning and maintaining bowling balls. After many uses, balls may accumulate unwanted oil, grease, dirt, and grime. By using a towel, a bowler is able to increase the life span of their ball. Utilizing a clean bowling ball can also provide performance benefits including enhanced grip and accuracy.