Terry Cloth Vs. Microfiber: What’s The Difference?

Terry cloth and microfiber are both great options when it comes to car detailing. 

However, they are not made equal. One is great for interior & exterior cleaning, while the other does a better job at buffing and polishing.  

Find out which one to pick in today’s topic: terry cloth vs. microfiber.

Terry Vs. Microfiber: Comparison Chart

Terry Cloth Microfiber
Versatile, durable, and highly-absorbent


Versatile, highly absorbent, and durable


Polyester and polyamide
Washing, polishing, buffing


Washing, drying, polishing, waxing, buffing

1 hour outdoors

Drying Time

30min-1hour outdoors

5% chance of scratching the paint


2% chance of scratching the paint

Up to 75 washes depending on the quality


Up to 150 washes depending on the quality

Check PriceCost

Check Price

Is Terry Cloth The Same as Microfiber?

Terry cloth vs. microfiber

No, terry cloth is not the same as microfiber.

Terry cloth is a type of fabric that is typically made from cotton or linen. It has a looped pile surface that is absorbent and good at trapping dirt and dust. Terry cloth is commonly used in automotive applications for buffing and polishing purposes.

Microfiber is a type of synthetic fabric that is finer and more tightly woven than terry cloth. As I see microfiber is more effective at picking up dust, dirt, and other debris. It is also more durable and easier to care for than terry cloth. Microfiber is a good choice for people who want a low-maintenance cleaning solution.

Terry Cloth vs. Microfiber: Detailed Comparison

Terry cloth vs. microfiber


I often use a terry cloth to clean tires, wheels, the engine, the floor mat and terry pads for buffing and polishing.

While, microfiber is a good idea for exterior, dashboard, steering wheel cleaning, and dry cleaning.

Drying Time 

Terry cloth towels are bulkier than microfiber towels. As a result, they can take slightly longer to air dry when washed. 

Microfiber dries faster because it is less absorbent.


GSM also determines Terry towels absorbency. A good GSM for hand towels for washing and drying cars starts at 380 GSM. These towels are much thicker and soft so that they can absorb lots of soap and water. So terry cloth is more absorbent than microfiber.

Chemical Guys MIC_506_12 Professional Grade Premium Microfiber Towels

Chemical Guys MIC_506_12 Microfiber Towels

Amazon Basics Microfiber Cleaning Cloths

Amazon Basics Microfiber Cleaning Cloths

Car Paint Safety

Microfiber is safer for car paint than terry cloth.

Though terry cloths made of 100% cotton, the main issue with them is the material used to sew in the cotton. Some have a synthetic base like rayon which is usually exposed at the edges. If these edges come into contact with the car’s exterior, they will leave scratch marks.

CARCAREZ Microfiber Towels for Cars

CARCAREZ Microfiber Towels for Cars


Microfiber is more durable than terry cloth.

Thanks to their natural fibers, terry cloth can last up to 75 washes and still work effectively. While microfiber can take it to 150 washes

CARCAREZ Microfiber Towels for Cars

CARCAREZ Microfiber Towels for Cars


Terry cloth is usually less expensive than microfiber.

Sum up

Choosing between terry cloth vs. microfiber is all about the purpose you have in mind.

If you are looking for something for polishing, buffing, waxing, terry cloth is for you.

Microfiber strikes a balance between usefulness and safety. For one, it can do all kinds of auto detailing jobs. But it needs to be clean 100% of the time if you want it to do a perfect job.

Go on and choose the best towel that fits your workspace. 

AUTDER Car Polisher Buffing Pad Bonnet - Cotton Polishing Bonnet Buffing Pad Cover - for 9" to 10" Car Polisher

AUTDER Car Polisher Buffing Pad Bonnet 

Chemical Guys MIC_506_12 Microfiber Towels

Chemical Guys MIC_506_12 Microfiber Towels

Read more: 3 Quick Tips to Remove Inspection Stickers 

1 thought on “Terry Cloth Vs. Microfiber: What’s The Difference?”

  1. Why good and accurate supplies for car detailing are necessary and from where they can be bought is what this blog covers in detail, along with how they can be used with various tactics. All that is said here explicitly in this blog, and people should read it. I have also given it a thorough look.

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published.