Different Types of Bed Sheets and How to Choose Them
Author: Manchester Collection Date Posted:23 September 2022
The bed is our most relaxing place and a sanctuary in our homes, so it must provide all the comfort we need for a good night’s sleep. Sleeping adequately and comfortably makes us wake up fresh and energised.
For a perfect sleep environment, you need adequate bed sheets. They are essential in making you feel comfy, so finding the proper material that suits your skin is crucial.
There are a few factors you should consider while choosing, like the material, length, season and others. In this article, you’ll learn about the many different types of bed sheets that will help you pick the one that will fit you and your bed.
How to choose the best sheets for your bed
Your bed is your safe space, and the sheets you choose will make the difference between a good night’s sleep and hours of tossing, turning, and counting sheep. Since there are many different shapes, materials and sizes of bed sheets, choosing wisely is maybe a more complicated task than you thought.
The last thing you want is to order a brand new set of sheets, realise they don’t fit, and have to send them back.
When wondering how to choose the best sheets, ask yourself these questions first:
- Will I manage to wash them properly?
- Will they serve their purpose?
- Are the sheets the right size for your bed?
- How will I feel about the texture?
- Will they be solid enough?
There’s no one answer as to which is the correct bed sheet for you. It depends on your sleeping habits, the bed you use, what materials you prefer, and your budget.
However, there are a few more things to think about before you decide to buy sheets for yourself:
- Colour. Besides your preferred colours and the aesthetics of your bedroom, you need to know that darker colours tend to absorb the heat more. If you don’t like that, choose brighter ones. For example, queen bed sheets come in beige, navy, white, carchoal, blush, black and many other patterns. King bed sheets come in aqua, black, silver... There are so many choices!
- Material. Cotton sheets, silk sheets, organic fabrics – there are many options. Think about what’s the most comfortable for your skin.
- Weave and thread count. The higher thread count means better and more durable fabric. A thread count of at least 180 is considered good quality. If you choose loose weave, your sheet may wear out faster.
- Size of the sheet. King, queen, single – this depends on the size of your bed.
- Pocket depth. Measure your mattress's depth so you can wrap it up effortlessly.
Thread count matters, so choose wisely
You often hear people talking about the different thread counts of sheets, but do you know why it’s so important? Usually, the higher the thread count, the more comfortable the sheets are. And while a higher thread count usually means more expensive sheets, it’s a good investment.
Thread count is the number of threads per one square inch of bed sheet fabric. If your thread count is low, the sheet won’t be soft, so you may scratch and get irritated.
And even though you may assume that you need to get the thread count as high as possible, this isn’t always the case. Popular high-quality thread counts are 250, 400, and 500. Those are perfectly acceptable bed sheets that will be enough to provide you with comfort.
Of course, the fabric type also determines what thread count to choose. For example, Hotelux 1000 thread count cotton sheets will give you the softness, warmth, and comfort you would expect from a high thread count sheet. On the other hand, if you’re a bamboo enthusiast, 600 thread count sheets will be an excellent fit.
You also need to know that a quality sheet costs more money. If you think you’ve found a great deal, a high thread count that’s maybe a bit too cheap, don’t rush. That sheet may be made of non-durable materials and will fall to pieces after a few uses.
Sheets with up to 250 thread count
The thread count of 200 is 100 threads vertically and 100 threads horizontally. If the thread count is less than 250, it may be a little rough, but after washing the sheets a couple of times, it will get much softer.
When buying, touch the sheets to feel their softness and pay attention to the quality. You can find a high-quality sheet with a lower thread count that will fit you and your budget.
Sheets with 250-500 thread count
Most people think the thread count between 250 and 500 is soft and comfortable. Be wary of high thread count claims because, at some point, manufacturers cannot get the high thread counts they claim to make.
You should be careful and research the quality of the manufacturer you wish to buy from, feel the sheets yourself, and think about what material is the best choice for you.
Bedsheets with 500+ thread count
General wisdom dictates that you should look for the highest thread count to get the feeling of softness and be comfortable, but a problem may occur with those high thread counts.
Manufacturers can boost the thread count by creating plies they use to make up each thread. One manufacturer can count the thread made of four plies as one, and the other may count it as four threads. You should know that the thread count isn’t crucial for softness and comfort, so there’s no need to go for a high thread count just for the sake of it.
Know what material you want
Are you a person who wants to relax on the classic cotton sheets, enjoy the luxury of silk sheets, or perhaps you want something entirely different? There’s no right or wrong when choosing the type of material you want. It’s all down to personal preference.
But if you want to make the right choice, you need to know what materials exist and what makes each of those fabrics unique.
Cotton is the most popular fabric when choosing bed sheets, presumably because of its variety and affordability. Also, cotton sheets are easily washable and durable. However, cotton tends to wrinkle and sometimes requires a few washes to reach a perfect level of softness.
Cotton sheets are easy to find, and the great thing about them is that they tend to stay cool, even during the summer.
All of this makes cotton the most common material for your bed sheets. However, not all cotton sheets are the same.
Egyptian cotton, for example, has the best quality, durability, and smooth texture. It is lint resistant, with a smooth finish and extra long staple fibres. Still, Egyptian cotton is one of the most expensive cotton sheets you can find, which makes it quite unaffordable sometimes.
Besides Egyptian sheets, many people love the warmth and texture of flannel sheets. The flannel sheets give a thicker and fuzzier feeling, so they’re better to use in cold weather.
Bamboo is the right choice if you want an eco-friendly material for your bed sheets. It’s becoming quite popular and widely used for household items besides bed sheets.
Bamboo bed sheets production includes bamboo cellulose extraction and weaving those fibres into the bamboo rayon. This results in a fabric softer than polyester on linen, resistant to wrinkles, durable, breathable, and hypoallergenic, which is why many people opt for it.
This environmentally friendly fabric is also used for making underwear and socks, and the hypoallergenic material is ideal for people who have sensitive skin. Bamboo will be gentle on your skin, keep you warm in cold months and make you cool in summer.
Polyester sheets are a budget-friendly option. Polyester is an artificial material made from polymers, so bed sheets made of polyester can be stiff and scratchy. For this reason, it’s often blended with other fabrics like cotton to create a smoother feel.
Linen has been a popular bed sheet material for a long time. It is a unique material known for its strength, comfort, and breathability. Whether 100% pure or blended with cotton, it dries fast and provides exceptional airflow.
Linen is a material made from the flax plant, and it’s popular because of its soft and airy feeling. These bed sheets are hypoallergenic and they help people with skin diseases.
If you choose linen as your bed sheet material, you don’t have to worry about being uncomfortable or overheated. Each wash makes linen bed sheets softer, and they are very durable. However, the problem with linen sheets is that they wrinkle a lot.
Tencel is a kind of fabric obtained from the Eucalyptus trees. Since it’s an eco-friendly material, it’s favoured by the people who want to preserve nature and want only environmental-friendly fabrics inside the household. It can be softer than cotton, and it requires fewer resources.
It’s wrinkle-resistant and hypoallergenic, but not as breathable as linen and cotton. Also, it’s not the best option in the summer as it tends to hold a bit more heat.
Silk is a fabric usually associated with luxury bedding. These sheets are cooler and soft, but some people find them slippery and too smooth for a bed sheet. They are also hypoallergenic, but they’re more expensive than cotton and bamboo sheets.
Silk sheets are somewhat delicate, and the silk tends to wear out in time. Also, the higher price range makes people think about whether to use them regularly. They are very sensual, and many people love the feel of silk sheets. Since they require delicate care, most people only use them on special occasions.
Microfiber is typically a finely and tightly woven polyester or a blend of polyester and nylon. It gives you a softer feel than polyester sheets. However, these sheets are less breathable, trap heat and moisture inside the material, and can be uncomfortable to sleep in, especially in summer.
On the other hand, microfiber sheets are easy to clean, which makes them an excellent option for people who have pets. Their breathability and warmth make them great for the winter. The fabric is very durable and you can wash off stains easily, so consider them for a kid’s bed or if you like to eat in bed sometimes.
Satin sheets are a fantastic option for people looking for warmth while sleeping. They are a blend of silk, bamboo rayon, and polyester. They are also shiny and velvety. However, satin sheets require delicate care and are prone to piling and tearing.
They can be woven or knitted. Either way, they are more affordable than silk if you want a glossy finish on your bed sheet.
Don’t forget to take the current season into account
You can choose different sheets for different seasons. Cotton is ideal here because it will provide ultimate comfort in every season. Linen sheets are the best for those humid summers, but, like cotton, they can also keep you warm when the weather gets colder.
You should avoid silk if you live in a hot climate. It’s suitable for cooler months and if you wish to switch styles occasionally. If you don’t want to worry too much about the seasons, choose the one that keeps you cool in the summer. And when winter comes, simply add bedspreads and duvets.
Educate yourself on the different types of weaves
Believe it or not, the material of your sheets isn’t the only thing that will determine the feel of the sheets, even though it’s a major deciding factor. You also need to consider the different types of weaves in your bed sheets.
Percale sheets are sheets made from cotton. It’s a plain weave (one yarn over and one under) and it has a matte finish. These sheets get softer with every wash and are best for hot sleepers and summer. Percale tends to wrinkle, so you should remove them from the dryer as soon as possible.
Sateen is maybe similar to satin, but you shouldn’t confuse these two. Satin structure creates sateen sheets (one yarn under and three over). Sateen sheets are silky smooth, elegant, not as durable as percale, and better for the cooler weather.
The twill weave leaves a diagonal design (an over-two and under-two pattern). Due to their thickness, twill sheets are wrinkle-resistant, but they tend to shrink more than the ones with a sateen weave. They are also more affordable than sateen.
Dobby weaves contain geometric or stripe patterns. They have more texture and shapes (squares, dots, diamonds), and the thick stripes are the most common design for bed sheets.
Fitted vs. flat – which is better?
The debate about fitted or flat sheets has been going on for a while. People are often confused regarding which one they should buy. The truth is that you need both, but you must understand these two types of sheets to see why they’re both necessary.
Fitted sheets come with elastic corners that grip the edges of the mattress and go over it. You need to buy the correct size because if you choose a smaller one, you won’t be able to put it over your mattress or your fitted sheets will come off.
A flat sheet should go on top of the fitted sheet. This ensures that your sweat doesn’t get to your bed and blankets. Also, you don’t have to wash all of them.
Both are practical and sometimes come as a package. Some people use the mattress protector underneath the fitted sheet.
Make sure you get the right size
Have you ever struggled with fitting your sheets on the bed without them slipping off or their sides riding up? If you have, you probably just didn’t use the proper size. Your sheets are supposed to fit on your bed snuggly and without any issues.
When you choose the sheets, make sure you know what mattress size you have and what sheet size you need.
Twin sheets are usually 39 by 75 inches (99 by 191 centimetres). They are most commonly used for children's beds. If a twin bed is a little longer, you can use XL twin sheets. They will make it easier to make the bed.
If you own a double bed, make sure your sheets are double bed sheets. Double bed sheets are 54 by 75 inches (137 by 201 centimetres). They can range a little in size, so it’s crucial to find the one that fits your mattress. Some manufacturers call them ‘’full’’ instead of ‘’double’’.
A queen size bed is popular because it has more space than a double bed. Queen bed sheets are 59 by 79 inches (150 by 200 centimetres), but the sizes can vary a little, so be careful to choose the right one for your mattress.
King bed sheets are 80 by 80 inches, which means they are large sheets for a large bed. Be careful when shopping for a king-size sheet because there is a difference between the king, California king or split king sheets.
The California king bed is narrower than the traditional king-size bed. These beds are more expensive than regular king beds and they’re not such a popular choice, so these sheets are harder to find and more pricey as well.
Most beds have just a single mattress, but split king beds have two, so they require two fitted sheets. They have only one flat sheet large enough to surround the whole bed. This way, both people have control of the mattress and get the best possible sleep.
Look for some extra features
Many people think that sheets are all the same and that they shouldn’t bother much about which ones to buy. But the truth is some extra features you can find in sheets will make a big difference.
Flat sheet with pockets
These sheets can be hard to find, but they’re worth it if you’re pulling your sheets off and tossing and turning a lot. Flat sheets with pockets prevent people from pulling them off every night.
Deep pockets are for thick mattresses. Some people like to buy deep pockets to put on the standard mattress because deep pockets stay in place better and the sheet doesn’t pull off.
Standard pockets are suitable for most mattresses. However, if you turn and toss, it’s better to use deep pockets because standard ones can slip off easily. Children especially have this problem as they find it difficult to get comfortable in just one position at night.
These are great for anyone with sensory problems. If you need a weighted blanket, these sheets are for you. Sensory compression sheets give you a feeling of deep pressure. They are stretchy and can help in calming and relaxing. You can use them all year and feel safe with sensory compression sheets.
If you live with a big family, you can benefit from personalising your sheets. They make a great gift and can even have your name embroidered on them.
A sheet set for your bedroom includes a fitted sheet, a flat sheet, and pillowcases. It’s easier to pick a set than to buy all of this separately. Also, this makes it easy to match everything so it looks and feels great all together.
Get ready for a good night’s sleep
Now that you know everything about the types of bed sheets, you can choose the one that fits you best, considering the size, material, and all the extra features you read about in this article.
Of course, you should think about style and the sheet pattern as well. Neutral colours fit every purpose, and black sheet set or charcoal sheet set will make any colour pop. White sheets are perfect for a calm mood and quiet space.
With the right bed sheets from Manchester Collection, your sleeping hours will be much more comfortable. You’ll wake up happy and fresh without tossing and turning or having to remake the whole bed each morning. So, choose the perfect bed sheet for you and create your ideal environment!
For more Bedroom Style Guide Tips, read more here.