The ABCs of Tenugui Towel : First Care – KAMAWANU - Japanese Tenugui Towel


The ABCs of Tenugui Towel : First Care

Here, we will introduce the basics and trivia about tenugui towel, and other information that will make using tenugui towel more enjoyable. We will also provide you with seasonal reading material and other information that will help you in your daily life.

The ABCs of Tenugui Towel: First Care

Some of you reading this may already own a tenugui towel. However, even if you have been using tenugui towel for many years, have you ever had any questions about tenugui towel or had trouble handling it?

In this first installment of the ABCs of Tenugui towel, we will discuss the basics of tenugui towel.


The first thing you should do when you get your favorite tenugui towel is to run it through water.

Because tenugui towel dyed in stencil dyeing are not color fastened, the color will "fade" in the beginning. In addition, the freshly purchased tenugui towel is pressed with a roller, so it has a beautiful luster and tension, but the texture is a little hard.

So, as a preparation before using it, let's run it through water.



To run it through water, wash by hand with plenty of water, without detergent or hot water.

Since there may be excess dye or glue left on the tenugui towel when you first buy it, the color may come out at first. If color appears in the water, rinse the cloth two or three times, changing the water until the color settles.

You may have been surprised to see many colors come out when you wash a dark-colored tenugui towel such as navy blue or red. One reason for this is that a large amount of dye is used in order to dye colors darkly and clearly. Excess dye may remain on the fabric, so rinse carefully.

Also, be careful not to use colored water to wash other tenugui towel, as the colors may migrate!

Color migration is a phenomenon in which other fabrics are dyed.

The trick is to wash it separately from other items for the first few times of use to keep it clean for a long time.


After washing, squeeze out the water well and hang dry in an airy, shady place. Drying in the sun will certainly dry it faster, but it can also cause "fading of colors". Stretch the fabric while it is still wet! while the garment is still wet, the wrinkles will be less noticeable and the garment will look better when it dries.



When dry, take care of the fraying. Cut only the long threads. Leave the short fringes. There will be fraying for a while, but it will stop at about 7 to 8 mm. As you use the yarn, the fringes will loosen and the fibers of the yarn will begin to get entangled with each other, making it difficult to pull out the long yarn, and the fraying will stop.

In the Edo period (1603-1867), tenugui towel were cut and sold by order, and the edges are still basically left uncut. In Japan, with its high temperature and humidity, tenugui towel has long been valued for its quick-drying qualities.



Once dry, fold them up and put them away. Place them in a basket of your choice or in an assortment of colors and seasonal patterns. When storing them away for a long period of time, it is recommended to keep them out of sunlight and lighting to prevent color fading.

Storing the fabric in a sealed plastic bag without washing it for a long period of time may cause the fabric to deteriorate. For long-lasting use, please try passing the fabric through water first.

 We will continue to help you enjoy a more convenient and enjoyable life with tenugui hand towels.