Bed Sheets: Everything You Need to Know Before Buying One

We all know how important a good night's sleep can be to living a happy and healthy lifestyle and bedsheets play a huge role to help you sleep better. Having the right bedsheet is as important as having a right pillow and mattress. Selecting new bedsheets can be an absolute dream. But when it comes to shopping for sheets, the majority of people think it is all about the thread count which is absolutely wrong. Thread count is a secondary consideration. It is basically the number of threads per square inch that are running through your sheets horizontally and vertically and they are important because they can drastically change how your sheets feel but even more important than thread count is the quality of the material being used and where it’s coming from. There are a bunch of different types to choose from when shopping for sheets. If you are on the hunt for a new bedsheet, you have come to the right place. It is safe to say that there isn’t one particular bedsheet that can satisfy everyone’s specific needs.

At OLIVIA ROCCO, we offer a diverse range of bedsheets for different kinds of sleepers, available in an elegant variety of colours, styles, and price ranges. Our stunning bedsheet collection will refresh your bedroom look and turn it into a retreat and relaxing space.

In this article, we will help you solve one of the betimes biggest mysteries and breakdown the most popular types of bedsheets, fabrics and other details to help you spend your money wisely next time you are browsing for bedsheets.

 

Flat Bedsheet

A flat bedsheet competes a properly made bed and indeed important to keep good hygiene. We spend roughly a third of our lives in bed thus, your place of rest is truly a hotbed for all sorts of microscopic life. About 10 million of your closest dust mite friends sleep with you every night and if you are allergic you probably already know to swap out bedding often. This is where the flat sheet comes into play. It’s what separates you and your comforter trapping most of your sweat, hair, and what have you. Since your mattress can double in weight over time from hair, sweat, and dead skin, imagine what your unwashed comforter is holding. A flat sheet provides a layer of protection between you and comforter or duvet cover.

Advantages of Flat Bedsheet

  • Not having a flat sheet means you have to wash your comforter on a more frequent basis because it will get dirty fast.
  • Many people launder their duvet covers a couple of times a year, and a flat sheet will save you from the hassle of washing your duvet cover which is such a pain in the neck and it is significantly easier to launder as well.
  • On the hot nights, a linen flat sheet will keep you cool and can be used by itself instead of blanket whereas in winter it will keep cozy and warm.
  • The best part about the flat sheet is that there is no exact size required to buy it and it can be swathed over the sides of the bed.
  • If you accidentally spill drinks in bed, a flat sheet can be changed.
  • Flat sheets are also easy to iron and can be easily folded. 

Disadvantages of Flat Bedsheet

The majority of people think of a flat sheet as an unnecessary addition in the bed making process. On a personal basis, some people don’t like the additional weight of the flat sheet, and some complain that they get tangled up in their flat sheets.

 

Fitted Bedsheet

Fitted bedsheet servers the pretty much same purpose as flat sheet, to protect the mattress or comforter from getting dirty and make your bedding feel more convivial and comfortable to lie on after a long working day. A fitted sheet has the elastic bands that provide a mega grip on the mattress and keep the sheet firmly in the right place without getting wrinkled. The edges contain a drawstring to secure the sheet more firmly and make it usable on the extensive range of mattress thicknesses.

How to Choose a Fitted Bedsheet

Choosing the right fitted bedsheet can be a strenuous task because you have to find a sheet according to the exact dimensions of your mattress. It is important to know the length, width, and thickness to find the perfectly matched fitted sheet that will pull tightly over the mattress to give the neat look and wouldn’t come off easily. The wrong sized fitted sheet would not fit around the corners and will be easily pulled off. A fitted sheet has so many fabric options. Choose the sheets that are gentle to the skin and more breathable and sustainable than other fabrics. So, if you are someone who does a lot of rolling around you want to make sure that your bedsheet stays put securely tucked to your mattress you can definitely vouch for the fitted sheets. The only problem with fitted sheets is that they are difficult to fold and iron and requires a lot of effort to get the job done.

Measuring your Bed for a Fitted Sheet

Making your bed doesn’t have to be a struggle if you have the correct fitted sheet. Mattresses today come in a wide variety of sizes, many of which are much thicker with a cushiony top and added padding. Besides, you also may be using a mattress pad or topper such as a feather bed, all of which can add inches to the thickness of your mattress. With a thick mattress and too-small fitted sheet, you can end up fighting to get it on the bed and eventually you’ll cause the pocket seams to strain and possibly tear or the sheet might just start to come off your mattress while you sleeping and bunch up under you, causing you discomfort. You can avoid all of that simply by measuring your mattress and buying a fitted sheet in the correct depth.

To start remove all blankets, comforters, and so on but leave on any mattress pads or toppers if you’ll be using them. Using a ruler or fixed tape measure measures the depth from the top seam to the bottom seam in several places to be sure you have the right fix. If you have a pillow top mattress or a feather bed which is higher and fluffier in the middle, you should estimate the depth beyond the side measurement. Either way, you should use the deepest measurement to determine which size of the fitted sheet you buy. If you already own a sheet and you are not sure what size the pockets are, you can easily measure it by laying it on the bed and measuring along the pocket seam. Typically cuddle down fitted sheets are sized deeper than your average retailer and depending on the style they may range from a 14-inch pocket to an 18-inch pocket. To save wear and tear on your sheets and to save your aching back from making a bed with a wrong-sized sheet, simply measure your bed to buy the correct size fitted sheet for your mattress.

 

Valance Bedsheet

A valance bedsheet is mostly used for decorative purposes and makes your bed look pretty much like a stylish hotel room bed. The valance sheet will conceal the base of your bed and perfectly hides items stored underneath your bed to give your room a neat and tidy look. It is also known as a bed skirt because it is quite similar to a skirt in appearance. Depending upon the size of your bed you can choose from different valance sizes available. It will add a unique sophisticated and sleek look to your bedroom turning it into your favourite place to be.

Back in the day, valance sheets were used to hide badly shaped bedposts and ugly box springs. Soon after it was discovered that it can also be used to block cold winter wafts to secure the bed from getting cold from the floor up. A valance sheet also protects against mites and bugs because it deflects dust from getting under the bed.

Types of Valance Bedsheet

The valance sheet comes in a variety of different options. There are three different types of valance sheets available such as frilled, single pleat, and box pleat.  Depending upon your region and country it may have a different name. Here are the other names of valances:

Valance Sheets: Box valance, fitted valance.

Bed Valances: Bed skirt, bed ruffle, divan valance, base valance, split corner valance, and dust riffle. 

Valance Sheet Sizes

In the UK, valance sheets are available in the standard sizes for the small, emperor, and double beds.

How to fit a Valance Sheet

To fit a bed valance, you can start by removing the mattress and place the valance sheet on the divan base. The frill of the sheet will cover the outer edges of the bed. It is recommended to measure your mattress before buying a base valance as moving a mattress every single for washing can be struggling. Easy fit valance is the easiest to fit, easily come off for washing, and can be reattached after washing.

 

Cotton Bedsheet

When shopping for cotton bedsheet it is important to note that the length of the fiber also known as staples matter and you should aim for long and extra-long-staple cotton because it tends to produce a more durable and softer finished fabric. If your sheets are made of 100% cotton, that’s a good sign but there are some circumstances when cotton is blended with another high-quality material to boost the durability and it brings really unique perks to the table. When buying cotton sheets, you need to be aware of the cotton you are getting. There are different varieties of cotton available such as Egyptian, Jersey knit, and Flannel, Supima, and Pima. Another important consideration is the weave of the fabric which identifies it even further. You will have options like sateen, flannel, percale, and twill. Next up is thread count which is one of the most confusing and unfortunately deceptive aspect in marketing for bed sheets. This term indicates the number of threads per square inch and a thread count of 200-400 should be your starting point.

 

Types of Fabrics Used in Bedsheets

When it comes to buying bed sheets there are plenty of fabrics to choose from. Here are the most popular types:

Cotton

First up is cotton which is the most common and utilised fibres when it comes to bedsheets. It is durable and wicks moisture away from your skin and has a really nice feeling. Good quality cotton will get softer and softer with each wash. The most common weaves in the cotton bedsheets are either percale or sateen.

Percale

Percale is usually made from cotton and woven to feel a little bit crisp. When you sleep at percale bed for the first time, the sheets are going to feel a bit stiff but over time they will soften up and be super comfortable.

Sateen

Next up is sateen which is made from cotton or other blended fabrics and it is silky and luxurious. The difference between percale and sateen is the way threads are woven. Sateen is brushed to feel super soft right from the get-go.

Silk

Silk is really soft to the skin. Good silk is extremely expensive and would probably cost you a thousand dollars. It is difficult to laundry, and snags. The problem with silk is that it does not breathe well and can be hot and a little bit clingy. It is not as durable as other fabrics in the market.

Cotton Polly

It is a blend of polyester and cotton. It typically costs far less than a good set of cotton sheets. It does not wrinkle as much as other fabrics. The problem with cotton Polly is that it does not feel nice next to the skin than other textiles. It is not breathable because of polyester and lacks any wicking properties. 

Microfiber

Over the last few years, microfibre becomes a really popular option. It is a sort of like an updated take on flannel. It is essentially a polyester sheet, which is soft and feels nice to the skin. So, if you like the look of sateen but you want something little warmer and heavier, a microfibre is a great option. Fleecy fabric is water-resistant so it makes a great pick for a kid’s room. It is low-cost than other textiles in the market. 

Bamboo

Use of bamboo as a fibre in the bedsheets is comparatively new than other fibres however, it is been around for 50 years or more. It is soft next to skin but does not last as long as cotton and it is not eco-friendly as well.

Linen

Finally, there is linen. Linen is made from flax plants and can be more expensive than cotton and all the blended fabrics but a good sheet set worth your money and can honestly last you a lifetime. Linen is one of the durable fabrics out there and also one of the most lightweight and comfortable. It has that whole wrinkle relaxed vibe which feels amazing. However, a lot of people don’t like how linen feels. Initially, it feels quite rough and makes take a year or more of washings to get that nice and soft feel. Besides, linen wrinkles significantly more than most of the other textiles.

 

Does Thread Count Matters for Buying Bedsheets?

A lot of folks are under the impression that a high thread count is the sole indicator of high quality, which is not entirely true because thread count loses its value unless you are dealing with high-quality materials. When it comes to cotton bedding, you are going to want to look for long or extra-long-staple cotton. This is important because the longer the cotton fibre, the smoother and more durable the finished fabric will be. With that being said, a good benchmark to follow when you are shopping for cotton percale is a thread count of anywhere from 250 to 500 with 400 and 500 being luxuriously high. With cotton sateen, you should aim for a thread count of about 200 to 600, again with the higher end of that spectrum being a top-notch luxury. A 200 thread count sheet made of fine Egyptian cotton might feel a lot softer than 800 thread count sheets of polyester fibre. So, you not only need to pay attention to thread count but also need to make sure you pay attention to the quality as well. Remember, if you ever see a bed sheet set that’s advertised with a thread count of 800 or 1,500, there is a good chance that there is a little bit of a marketing ploy and you are working with lower quality, short fibre cotton. Sometimes, manufacturers use multiple fewer quality strands and count those as towards a higher thread count which is completely misleading. Always look for single-ply as it usually indicates a more quality single fibre so don’t be fooled by a high thread count number.

 

Is Egyptian Cotton Ideal for Bedsheets?

Egyptian cotton is widely regarded as a superior type of cotton because if its long and supple fibres which produce a higher quality fabric. Not to mention, the Egyptian cotton is typically picked by hand from the Nile River Valley rather than picked by machine, which helps those cotton fibres to stay long and strong. However, Egyptian cotton is not the only type of cotton that features long fibres. Pima and Supima cotton also feature long fibres. Supima cotton is also known for its superior quality and comes second after Egyptian cotton. The only difference is that it is harvested in the U.S.  It is super soft and durable especially ideal for summers because of its breathability and cooling properties. So, if you are a hot sleeper, Supima cotton sheets are a perfect choice.

 

Important Considerations

While buying cotton sheets, you need to look for the type of fibre such as extra-long-staple cotton or long-staple cotton. This has to do with characteristics of the fibre, its length, diameter, and tensile strength. The extra-long and long cotton provides a much nicer feeling sheet and more durable quality.

Today’s mattresses are exceptionally thick and a lot of sheets that are being produced do not fit those super thick mattresses. That’s why always look for an extra deep pocket fitted sheet.

Another thing to look for in the great set of bedsheets are embellishments. Though these have nothing to do with the longevity or durability of the sheet but they make it look nice on the bed. It includes hemstitching, tape appliqués, embroidery, etc. These add-ons also demonstrate some of the additional workmanship and thought that went into the construction of the product.

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