With fibers 100 times smaller than a human hair, synthetic microfiber cloths have a unique split fiber construction which makes them especially prone to catching on particles and absorbing them into the fiber. The familiar "eyeglass cleaning cloths", which work so well, are microfiber.
This unique fabric also has a lot of "grip" for truly superior cleaning ability
Sold as a 3-towel "Variety Pack":
• Glass and mirror - Lint Free (light blue towel); a tight, matted weave, similar to eyeglass cloths, but designed to work when wet
• Polish and shine - Super Soft (dark blue towel); a looser, fluffier weave, works especially well on metals
• Wash and clean - Xtra Strong (orange towel); an intermediate, semi-loose weave, especially good at absorbing dirt particles
• Machine washable
Heavy on the technical side...
Comparing two similar synthetic cloths:
Microfiber cloths are commonly made of a blend of very small diameter polyester and polyamide (nylon) "microfibers" which have multiple longitudinal slits. (In cross-section they would look like an asterisk.)
This structure gives them tremendous surface area for absorbing liquids, as well as a physical structure which easily captures and holds small particles (dirt). Microfiber cloths excel at absorbing oils without being abrasive or smearing. Microfiber cloths leave no lint or dust. These latter qualities make them ideal for cleaning eyeglasses, camera lenses, and electronics screens.
Microfiber cloths can be hand or machine washed. If you machine wash cloths which have absorbed oils or waxes, be prepared to wash the inside of the washing machine tub to remove the inevitable oily residue.
Wash microfiber towels in hot water to expand the fibers and release the dirt particles. Do not wash with other items. Do not use powered laundry detergent, and do not us fabric softeners (which coat the fibers, rendering them useless). Some folks even recommend against regular laundry detergent, opting instead for specialized microfiber detergents. Dry on a very low heat setting as high temperatures can melt the fibers, lower the loft - resulting in less absorbancy and the leaving of swirl marks (small scratches).
PVA cloths, treated with polyvinyl acetate, are sometimes called "sports towels" and are known for their ability to absorb water - more than a traditional cotton towel. They leave no lint and can be wrung out and reused for this purpose.