Welcome to the world of exquisite slumber! Let’s discover the insider secrets to determining the finest bed linens. Join us as we delve into a realm where comfort, durability, and elegance converge. Today we’re taking a closer look at cotton, polycotton, polyester, percale, satin and thread count. Read on to discover everything you need to know about making the perfect choice!
What’s up with cotton, polycotton and polyester?
Cotton is a natural fibre. It is a soft, absorbent, breathable, and non-allergenic fibre to keep the body cool in summer and warm in winter. It makes it a perfect choice for bed linen.
Polyester is a generalised term for any fabric or textile, which is made using polyester yarns or fibres. It is a shortened name for a synthetic, man-made fibre. Advantage of polyester is that it does not crease easily, it is light and durable and easy to dye. However its disadvantage is that one feel sweaty under these fabrics as its so breathable as cotton. Some with sensitive skin develop allergies to polyester.
Percale vs Sateen – How do they differ?
The biggest difference between cotton percale and cotton sateen is the weave structure. There are two types of threads that go into a fabric; warp and weft.
The main differences to note between cotton percale and cotton sateen are:
- Structure – percale has a much tighter weave.
- Strength – percale is a stronger fabric that is harder to snag or tear.
- Finish – percale has a matte finish, whereas sateen is silky and shiny.
What is thread count and why does it matter?
Technically, thread count means the number of threads woven together in a square inch. You count both lengthwise (warp) and width wise (weft) threads. So 100 lengthwise threads woven with 100 width wise threads produce a thread count of 200.
High thread count doesn’t mean much if the threads being counted aren’t high quality. Actually, the quality of cotton sheets depends on several factors, including fibre quality, yarn size, finishing, thread count and construction.
A fabric with a thread count of 200 high-quality fibres can have a better hand, or feeling to the touch, than a thread count of 400 inferior-quality fibres or twisted threads.
In the world of cotton, the length of the fibre is an indication of quality. In Egyptian cotton or Aegean cotton (grown along the Aegean Sea in Turkey) the fibres — also called staples — are longer than in other types of cotton. Longer staples equal a stronger thread and more durable fabric.
A process called carding, where smaller fibres get worked out, leaving the longer fibres behind, further increases the quality of raw cotton fibres. And combing, another process, removes even more small fibres. After that, the clean cotton fibres get spun into threads and woven into fabrics.
Polycotton is a blend of Polyester and Cotton. The ratios of each material vary, with 70% Cotton, 30% Polyester being a particularly popular combination.
What to Choose…
Figuring out which types of fabric are best for your bed sheets can be really tricky. There are so many different varieties out there, which can make it really confusing when it comes to finding the type that’s right for you.
Cotton bed sheets are famous for their super soft, luxurious feel. Which is why you’ll often find them in many Luxury Boutiques and 5-star Hotels around the world. This super soft feel is a result of the crafting process involved when cotton sheets are made.
Polycotton sheets are highly durable, as Polyester contains similar agents to plastic, making it unlikely for Polycotton sheets to rip or tear easily. This durable nature makes Polycotton an extremely popular choice in commercial settings such as in hospitals, where bed sheets are often changed very regularly.
100% Cotton bed sheets are also extremely durable due to the strength of the cotton fibres found in their material. Any good 100% Cotton bedding retailer will provide customers with a long term guarantee on their bed sheets. It’s always wise to opt for trusted retailers who can give you peace of mind when it comes to the durability of their products.
Both Cotton and Polycotton bed sheets are very low maintenance when it comes to washing and drying. Both types of fabric can be washed on normal cycles in your washing machine and can be dried in the dryer. To give your sheets the best chances of retaining their quality, always follow the manufacturer guidelines when washing and drying your sheets.
Getting to sleep with Hay Fever and other allergies can be a real struggle, so making sure you choose the most allergy-friendly bed linen will give you the best chance of getting a good night’s sleep. 100% Cotton bedding is naturally hypoallergenic, and breathable, making it the most desirable option for allergy sufferers.
People with allergies or sensitive skin often find that Polycotton bed sheets make them itch. This is due to the synthetic fibres in the materials, which contribute to the lack of airflow through Polycotton sheets.
The lack of air circulation provided by Polycotton sheets will likely result in much tossing and turning throughout the night. Polycotton also lacks absorbance, meaning that any sweat your body produces during the night is likely to be trapped underneath the covers with you, increasing your body heat further.
Cotton on the other hand, is naturally breathable and will absorb any moisture it comes in contact with during the night, helping to keep you cool as a cucumber all night through.
For bed linen, 100% cotton would be the route to go for excellent comfort. A thread count of anything between 200 to 400 thread count would be ideal. Remember the type of cotton like that of Aegean or Turkish cotton, or Egyptian cotton with long fibres are superior quality compared to cotton of shorter fibres. An extremely high thread count of 1000 with an inferior cotton does not make the sheet more comfortable or superior. Remember the higher thread count makes the fabric more dense and one needs the fabric to be breathable. Settling for 100% cotton between 200 to 400 thread count would be a reasonable choice to make.
For more visit Cottonbox and make the right choice for your bedroom.