A Guide to Choosing Bed Sheets
If there’s one thing I love about sleeping, it’s having soft, smooth sheets. It’s just so difficult to pick ones that will feel that way all the time, not just at the store.
Thread count is the number of threads woven into a square inch. It used to be the higher the thread count, the more tightly woven the weave and the softer the sheets. But now it’s mostly a marketing ploy. In order to go higher than 400, manufacturers use a multi-layer weave that results in heavier sheets lacking breathability. For light, soft sheets, find single “ply” construction with a 400 thread count.
For comfort all year round, avoid synthetic fabrics – polyester, acrylic and nylon – they are heavier and less breathable. Natural fibers –cotton, silk, flax, or wool – and synthetic fibers – viscose and rayon – are absorbent and porous, adapting to changes in temperature and humidity. Synthetic fibers have the added benefit of being extremely durable.
Cultivate a weave
There are four types of weaves – plain, twill, sateen and patterned. Used for 80% of fabrics, plain weaves produce strong, even fabric. Twill produces strong fabric with a softer “drape”. Sateen produces smooth, heavier fabric with a higher thread count. Patterned produce fabrics with, you guessed it, a textured pattern. These are the most durable bedding weaves, but may not be the most comfortable.
The other unfortunate issue many have is finding the right fitted sheet. If you have a thicker mattresses, find a fitted sheet with extra deep pockets. Lastly, if your sheet “rides up” on you, find a fitted sheet with elastic all around (instead of just at the corners). This will keep the sheet secure all night long.