If you’ve heard people talking about bedding linen these days, they’ll probably mention terms like thread counts and Egyptian cotton this or that.
What are they talking about anyway and does it matter. A sheet is just a sheet right? Well, no not really.
And since you’re here, reading this, then you’re someone that does care and wants to know more about the subject of bed linen.
I hope that this little guide helps you do just that.
When shopping for bed linen, whether it’s top sheets, fitted sheets, duvet covers or pillowcases, there are a few things to keep in mind before we start.
Start by getting a quick measurement of your bed. This may sound silly, but when you go to buy new sheets or bed linens, you may only see the standard bed size or actual measurement in inches, and the fact is that manufacturers are changing the bed sizes a bit, and you may end up with some sheets that aren’t quiet the right size.
It’ll just take you a second anyway and then you’ll be sure. If the size seems a bit close, then opt for the bigger size, then you’ll be fine if your sheets shrink a bit.
Remember to take the thickness of your mattress into account also. Some can be up to 18″ thick and need that extra depth in the sheet to accommodate it.
Something to know about fitted sheets too, is that you want the better ones with elastic all the way around. The sheet will stay in place with no popping off…which is really annoying in the middle of the night!
Now, let’s see about the type of fabric. Basically it comes down to either natural or synthetic.
You want to consider this, because your bed sheets, duvet covers and of course pillowcases are always touching your skin while you sleep.
So is natural or synthetic better? Well, the answer to this depends on what qualities are the most important to you personally. A lot of people use the polyester/cotton blends because they have normally been more economical and tended to wrinkle less. However, these bed linens do not breathe and just aren’t as comfortable. They will tend to hold onto body oils and don’t wick away moister. They will also ‘pill’ after washing them a lot, which means that the fibers break here and there and form little balls of fabric over time, which is also sort of yucky looking.
More people are rediscovering the wonderful feeling of natural fabrics like silk, linen, cotton or blends of those for sleep that’s cooler and more comfortable. These natural linens wick away moisture, dry quickly and just feel soft and great. When looking for the best types of natural fabrics for the bed, look for:
Silk and linen are awesome, but can be somewhat more difficult to care for, less durable and also somewhat on the expensive side for daily use. Don’t worry, you’re not out of luck here.
Just look for cotton with the following terms.. 100% Egyptian cotton- considered the best in sumptuous feel and durability.
Pima cotton- pretty much the same, being Egyptian cotton actually grown in the US. Supima cotton is also great- fibers are just a tiny bit shorter, but a nice quality cotton grown in the Southwestern US.
Among the better types of weaves for the bed sheets are: sateen and percale These cottons have long fibers which result in strong and wonderfully soft bed linen. Can’t beat that. And you’re sure to find something that’s just right for your budget too.
Hey what’s all this about thread counts? Thread count just means the number of threads running through one square inch of fabric both up and down, and they range from 80 or so, all the way up past 1000 these days. Generally speaking, 200 to 220 is just fine for daily use
230 to 290 is considered better
300 to the sky is considered in the luxury range.
Some bed linen manufacturers market their products not telling you that the way they arrive at really high thread count sheets is to split the threads and then weave them in a way that lets them say that.
So there’s a point at which a higher thread count doesn’t guarantee better softness and durability. A lot of folks in the know say that this number is around 400.
Bottom line is not to shop by thread count number alone. Let your budget and sense of adventure decide. Now that you know some things to keep in mind when shopping for linens for your bed, you’re sure to find just the thing!
It’s a kick to be able to browse online whenever you want for that perfect deal on bed linen and have it all delivered right to the front door!