Consumers are warming to heating with a reduced impact on the environment and their fuel bills. We take a look at the impact on the towel warmer market.
With the rise in energy bills and climate change stories either in or not too far from the headlines, it’s unsurprising consumers are paying closer attention to how they heat their homes.
Towel warmers that offer sustainable solutions are becoming a focus, as sales director of Vogue UK Steve Birch comments: “We are finding new appetite for heating solutions that provide homeowners with all the advantages of warmth and style, without the environmental impact.” He points to aluminium designs as an eco-luxe choice for the bathroom.
Allan Jones, commercial director of Zenhnder Group UK, says the focus on the environment has impacted its portfolio, adding: “We are focusing on developing products to support our ‘green’ credentials and sustainability goals with the introduction of a new range of electric towel rails and radiators. Many of which we will be launching on July 1, with the new Zehnder Studio Collection.”
Personalisation and paint
But in terms of delivering in aesthetics, it seems anything goes, with consumers looking to personalise their bathroom with heating that can blend into the space or stand out as a focal feature.
Allan Jones of Zehnder Group adds: “The main trend for personalisation of towel rails has been in their colour choices, where customers can make statements with bold colours but also with the ability to go with colour matching themes.
“This has been seen in the popularity of Zehnder’s colour matching service, allowing many of our towel (and room) radiators to be matched to leading paint manufacturer choices including Farrow & Ball and Little Greene.”
While Steve Birch of Vogue UK advises: “I think the way to approach the towel rail is to see it as an integral part of the scheme, whether it is a sculptural statement piece or a more subtle addition.”
As part an integral part of the comfort of a room, kbb designers must also make sure the product will provide enough output to heat the space.
Business development UK & Ireland for Vasco John O’Brien warns: “Designer towel rails can be practical and stylish but if you are looking to heat the whole bathroom, the output provided by a towel rail is not sufficient.”
And Allan Jones of Zehnder Group UK points to an industry issue, where published outputs may not live up to the reality. He says ensure products carry a standard, which will guarantee the heating output.
Jones states: “As a manufacturer and member of MARC ( The Manufacturers’ Association of Radiators and Convectors), all our outputs are independently tested to EN442 with CE certification (soon to be UKCA from Jan 1, 2023) meaning retailers can specify Zehnder and Zehnder Studio Collection towel rails with 100% confidence that the outputs we declare are accurate.
“Unfortunately, there are a number of importers and distributors that do not meet these same standards and as MARC we have been pushing ‘You are what you heat’ campaign to raise awareness of the need to have quality CE marked towel rails and radiators.”
The good news is that industry experts agree the market for designer towel rails is only going to grow in sales, so ensure you are clued up on certification, colour options and eco-credentials to maximise sales.