Our Story

Better basics for your daily routines

Isn’t it worth it to pay attention to the things we rely on for our daily routines? Humans are, after all, creatures of habit. Our days are defined by the unique experiences every day brings, but our daily routines are the glue that holds it all together. For the ones that depend on a product—a towel for the shower, a journal for morning pages—you need something that feels good to use, does its job without any fuss, and keeps on doing its job for the life of the product.

At Onsen, before we even get to the drawing board on a new product, we ask ourselves what it gets right, what it gets wrong, and how we can craft a solution with purpose. We make basics that are exceptionally useful so you don’t even have to think about them, and can focus on the experiences that make life worth living.


Growing up hapa in Japan - samurai

How my heritage inspired a better towel


I’m Shane.

I used to hate getting out of the shower and using a towel I didn’t like. I founded Onsen to make a towel that was stronger, softer, and dried faster than any other towel I’ve ever used. And now I can’t wait to reach for it every day after a shower (or bath).

I’m half-Japanese, and if there’s one thing I learned from the time I spent living and working there, it’s the incredible value they place on quality home goods. The type of stuff that we use in our everyday routines without thinking about it—that is, we don’t think about it until the thing stops doing its job and turns a daily routine into a daily headache.

My terry towels weren’t doing their job anymore. When I reached for them after a shower they were either still wet, smelled musty, or a terrible combination of the two. Inspired by the lighter, thinner, quick-drying towels popular in Japan, I asked myself what the sole job of a towel was, and how I could improve it.

I was so conditioned into thinking plusher, thicker, and heavier was better when it came to towels that it took me a couple weeks to get used to the lightweight waffle weave of the first prototypes, but at a certain point I realized they were outperforming any towel I had ever used. As far as I’m concerned, those thick, heavy terry towels are a thing of the past.

- Shane