What to look for when buying bedding

If you’re in the market for new bedding, you need to think about more than just thread count.

From fabric type to weave, there’s so much information that it’s often hard to know what to look for. With this quick guide I hope to help you answer the most commonly asked questions about bedding so you can make the most informed choice for your new set of bedding.

1. Is Egyptian Cotton the best?

When it comes to cotton bed sheets, Egyptian cotton is seen as the crème de la crème thanks to its extra long fibres that make are strong and smooth. But buying good quality cotton doesn't mean it has to be Egyptian. Just ensure that the cotton your bedding is made from comprises extra long fibres and the yarns aren't blended with lower grade cottons.

2. What is Percale and Sateen?

Percale and sateen are two different types of weaves most commonly found in cotton bedsheets, duvet covers & pillowcases. The different weaves offer alternative textures & finishes to the cotton threads. For a crisp, matte, light breathable fabric, opt for Percale, as this weave is more open and allows for air to flow easily through the sheet. For a shinier finish with a silky touch, opt for sateen. Neither is better or worse than the other - it just comes down to personal preference.

3. Is a higher thread count (TC) the better?

Bedding thread count ranges from around 120 to over 1000 TC. Thread count refers to the number of threads in a square inch of cloth and has become a marketing buzz word to describe luxury, but a high thread count alone is no assurance of quality. But does the highest numbered thread count doesn’t mean always mean the best the best - not at all. Cloths with a high thread count can often indicate multiple yarns twisted together to artificially increase the thread count, however, that this doesn’t often result in better quality fabric. The choice of yarn is equally as important, as 1000 TC of lower grade cotton will only reward you with a lower grade bedsheet (just with a higher number of threads!). Just note that anything less than 200 TC will be thin & less substantial. Look for bed sheets that are around 300 TC - 500 TC anything below that isn’t worth paying more for.

4. What’s the difference between organic vs Oeko-Tex certified?

The simplest way to explain the difference between Organic and Oeko-Tex comes down to how the materials of the fabric are grown and manufactured. For materials to be labeled as organic, the raw materials must be grown and farmed according to strict guidelines and without petroleum-based fertilisers, pesticides and synthetic products.

The next step of certification is Oeko-Tex Standard 100, which analyses how the raw materials are then processed. This considers things like dye, sewing threads, linings, prints, and any non-textile accessories such as buttons on the final product. If a product is labeled as Oeko-Tex certified it is completely free from harmful chemicals and safe for human use. To attain Oeko-Tex Standard 100 certification, the fabric has been tested and certified to be free from harmful levels of more than 100 substances known to be harmful to human health.