Bedding Buying Guide - Be Dressed for Comfort
As part of the bedding buying guide, some common types of bed linens:
• Cotton / Polyester Blends – They are a mix of synthetic and natural fibers. Bed linens also come in polyester or 100 percent cotton. Cotton is highly breathable and therefore perfect for the warmer months like summer. Other cotton variations include cotton sateen and Egyptian cotton.
• Jersey – This material feels like a comfortable T-shirt and won’t wrinkle as badly as some materials. It has a low thread count due to the fabric but this does not mean the material is of lower quality. Flannel, more suited for the colder months is considered a ‘coarser’ version of jersey.
• Silk – A natural fiber, it is known for its exceptionally thin and smooth thread that, when woven together, create shiny, satiny fabrics.
• Satin – Not as comfy as silk, and it tends to be warm and sticks to the body. This should not be confused with the soft “sateen” which has a unique weave that makes the sheets lustrous and silky.
• Microfiber – This is a terms for fibers with one of the thinnest strands. These fabrics are soft, hold their shape and ‘breathe’ well.
• Other material types – Percale is a fine, lustrous, smooth cloth, whose name refers to the weave of the fabric rather than its content. It can contain a 50/50 blend of polyester and cotton, 100 percent cotton or a blend of other fabrics in any ratio. Jacquard fabrics are those woven using the Jacquard attachment on the loom, resulting in complex, intricate patterns and greater comfort, regardless of climate.
Purchase Checklist for the Bedding Buying Guide
• Size – Make sure you know the exact size you are looking for. As a bedding buying guide, measure your mattress by length, width and most importantly the depth as mattress depth can vary significantly.
• Color scheme – Coordinate your bed linens with something in the room such as carpeting, wall coverings, curtains or a favorite chair.
• Material – There are many types of materials used for bed linens. The most popular being 100 percent cotton, while linen and silk are other high-end choices. Some materials such as flannel can sometimes cause allergies due to its high lint content while polyester doesn’t always agree with one’s skin. Once you have chosen between appearance, warmth and comfort, then you can select the type that fits your needs.
• Thread count – A higher thread count in your linens means more comfort an feel. For instance, a count of 225 threads actually means that there are 225 threads per square inch of material. A higher thread count does not mean the sheet is more durable and long lasting, as the threads are thinner. The recommended thread count is 225. As a bedding buying guide, don’t buy those that go lower than 175.
• Maintenance – Read labels for cleaning instructions. The polyester/cotton blends are the easiest to maintain and require no pressing, while silk and satin require dry cleaning or other special cleaning methods that can be costly. Also, most cotton sheets though machine-washable and dryable may require some pressing.
Bedding Buying Guide and Bed Linen Maintenance Tips
• Always check the labels on your linens for special care instructions.
• Wash your new linens before the first use
• Machine-wash in cool water with mild detergents
• For long life, do not use brighteners or bleaches
• To retain vibrant color and protect embroidered details, invert bed linens when machine washing and drying.
• Before ironing your fabrics, test your iron on an offcut to determine heat tolerance. While some can withstand the hottest steam iron, others will shrink or melt at too high a temperature
• To avoid wrinkles, remove the bedding from the dryer before they are completely dry
• Touch up with a warm iron if wrinkles persist. But once again, check the label first
Here’re some more selection tips for bedroom essentials:
Mattress selection tips - top tips on buying and keeping that mattress for longer
Duvet buying guide - essential guide on selecting and maintaining the duvet
Pillow buying guide - tips and advice on buying and maintaining your pillows
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