One of the best ways to give your bedroom a whole new look is to get new sheets or other beddings. But while shopping for these is a treat, it can also be a bit confusing. With so many different types of fabric out there, how do you know which is the best? Choosing your favorite color can be done in a snap, but choosing the right fabric that suits your preferences is more complicated.
Cotton is the most common and popular fabric used to make sheets and other bedding because it is breathable, soft, durable, easy to care for, and generally quite affordable. However, there are also several different types of cotton. Some terms used for some types of cotton stand for the origin of the cotton fibers used, while other terms indicate the weaving style or how the cotton fabric was treated. Here are some of the most common types of cotton:
Egyptian cotton is grown in North Africa and is the most luxurious cotton variety. Choose this if you’re looking for super-soft, high-quality bed sheets. The cotton fibers are extra long and create the softest, smoothest fabric. Pima cotton has a medium- to extra-long fiber and is known for its softness and natural sheen, making it the ideal fabric for bed sheets. The US southwest is the primary supplier of prima cotton fibers.
Upland cotton is endemic to the Americas but has now become the most commonly grown cotton worldwide. It’s not as soft as the Pima or Egyptian cotton because it has shorter fibers. Most bargain-priced cotton sheets are made of Upland cotton unless otherwise specified. Supima® is a name for fibers and materials made from 100% American Pima cotton.
MicroCotton® is a trademarked name of very soft and absorbent durable cotton made from long-staple cotton fibers developed in India. Cotton jersey is made from knitted cotton fabric. Cotton jersey is also the fabric used in cotton T-shirts. Percale is a closely woven cotton plain-weave fabric with a very cool texture and a 180 or higher thread count. Combed cotton refers to cotton fabric that has been further treated to remove all the short fibers to create a very smooth fabric.
Flannel is best for cold winter nights. The soft fabric that traps body heat has been combed to give it a snuggly-warm quality. Unlike most cotton fabric qualities measured by thread count, flannel’s quality is measured in ounces per square yard. The best collections of flannel sheets come out as winter approaches.
Silk is a natural fiber produced by silkworms. This soft, luxurious fabric is hard to beat when used as sheets. Besides being naturally hypoallergenic, the fabric is very cool, silky, and sensuous, making any bedroom romantic and sexy. Because of its high quality, silk fabric can be costly. It’s also very delicate. Still, you might want to consider a set of silk sheets if you’re after utmost comfort.
Polyester is a synthetic fiber made from the same polymers used to produce plastic drink bottles. Polyester is inexpensive, but it’s quite stiff and scratchy when not blended with other fabrics, so you’ll most likely find the fabric mixed with another thread when used in sheets.
Microfiber is very finely-woven polyester. This fabric can be very soft but not as breathable as cotton. Microfiber sheets are not the best choice for people who tend to “sleep hot.” However, they are durable and resistant to stains, so they are perfect for a child’s bedroom.
Nylon is a synthetic fabric that is strong and durable and makes for soft and satiny bed sheets that are resistant to wrinkling. The downside to using nylon for bed sheets is that the fabric starts to pill up after a few washes. It also does not hold up well under the high temperatures of dryers or clothes iron. It’s also not very resistant to sunlight.
Acrylic is also man-made. Compared to natural fibers, it is not very comfortable, but it is resistant to wrinkles and is perfect for making very colorful bedding. Acrylic is more often used in blankets and comforters than in sheets. You need to wash acrylic fibers carefully to avoid pilling.
You can make fabric from bamboo fibers, but they’re rather stiff and rough. Often, sheets labeled as “bamboo” went through a chemical process to dissolve the pulp and re-solidify it before spinning it into a thread. This process entails using harmful chemicals that can potentially damage the environment, making bamboo sheets less environmentally friendly than advertised. However, the process produces a fabric that is very soft, durable, silky, and breathable.
Several blended fabrics include some form of cotton, including cotton/polyester, cotton/bamboo, cotton/rayon, and nylon/polyester. Blended fabrics are often durable, wrinkle-resistant, and inexpensive, making them an excellent choice for children’s bedrooms.
Caring for Your Bedsheets
Body oils, fluid, and surface dirt on the body can soil bed sheets. Most sheets come with fabric care labels that show their fiber content and a proper washing guide. Wash cotton sheets in hot water using heavy-duty detergent to remove stains and soil. Use warm water to wash microfiber sheets and cotton/polyester blends.
Most people like soft sheets. However, using fabric softener and dryer sheets can lessen natural fibers’ absorbency, which may be uncomfortable for people who sweat a lot. Instead of fabric softeners, add distilled white vinegar during the final rinse cycle to get rid of residues that cause sheets to feel stiff.
If you are looking for the best quality fabrics for sheets, Spandex Warehouse is here to serve you. We offer a wide variety of fabrics that make for excellent beddings. For more information, get in touch with us at 213-629-7416 or send us a message at [email protected]. You may also browse our website at https://spandexwarehouse.com.