I’ve Tried Over 20 Bedding Brands, and Here are My Favorites
Updated: Nov 27, 2019
Did you just love that click bait headline? I figured I’d go super buzzy with it, and maybe just MAYBE, Google will bump me up a couple slots. #RiseAndGrind, what can I say? Anyway, to begin, here is a list of things I am passionate about:
The perfect ratio of turkey sandwich to pickle to salt & vinegar chips. Bite for bite for bite.
Peppermint flavored chapstick, specifically this one.
Defending John Mayer’s womanizing days (um, hello, you mean to tell me that any straight male with that level of notoriety and a tattoo sleeve wouldn't have done the same? Or that in the age of #MeToo, John wouldn’t have been outed by now as a legitimate scumbag? I THOUGHT SO.)
The left lane fast lane rule. I don’t drive much anymore but that does not mean my road rage is dormant.
Bedding is a simple (yet so incredibly important) luxury. The average American spends a third of their lifetime in bed, so why in God’s name are you sleeping in a sweaty polyester blend? In the opinion of someone who’s has tried tonnnns of bedding brands (me!), make this investment in your life. Your face, feet, armpits, and potential sleep partners will thank you.
In sleep, just as in life, I tend to run hot. I like to leave the window open even in the winter (if my hand has escaped the covers and doesn’t go numb in five minutes, the room temperature is incorrect), and prefer to get bundled up as opposed to sleeping with minimal linens. That is to say: I love percale sheets. Percale is a cotton weave that’s cool and crisp, compared to the softness of sateen (see more on weaves below). LL Bean’s 280 Thread Count Pima Cotton Percale (I know, an outdoor retailer, but seriously) percale is so snappy fresh that each turn of the pillow feels impossibly refrigerated. It’s the one I look forward to most in my rotation of four sheet sets, and absolutely impossible to leave in the morning. However, if you’re a little wimpy baby and like warm sheets, stay tuned.
I never thought I’d fall in love with a set of sheets not made from cotton (because I’m a snob, that’s why) but Sheets & Giggles is the real deal. Kitschy name notwithstanding, these eucalyptus sheets get softer with every wash just like sheets are meant to, and expertly straddle the fence between insulating and breathable. They’re definitely not cool or crisp, but I’ve never woken up with night sweats in them, so that’s an A+ in my book! They’re so soft I find myself doing little pedal movements with my legs in bed just to feel them on my 3-day stubbled calves. Oh, and eucalyptus is a more sustainable material than cotton, so go Earth!
Most like a Hotel: I detest a hospital corner (claustrophobic, much?) but I love a quality hotel bed. While there are tons of factors that contribute to a fabulous sleep away from home, sheets are a biggie. Boll & Branch’s sateen and percale organic cotton sheets are straight-up luxury, and feel stolen from the Ritz Carlton. Yes, they're pricey, but they’re also fair-trade certified and seriously made with love (I would know! I met the founder!). If you’re someone who spends time researching the ethics of a company, you’ll sleep soundly on these babies.
Best for Beginners:
If you've gotten to this point in the post and thought, “Jesus H, why would I spend that much on sheets when I can get a $50 set at Target?” I feel you. I’ve been super fortunate to work in media and test expensive things for a living—which also leaves me with good ol’ champagne taste/lemonade wages. Luckily, Brooklinen has a Classic Core Set (1 flat sheet, 1 fitted sheet, 2 pillowcases) for $99, and GET THIS: they have a lifetime warrantee. So if something very tragic happens to your pricey sheets, they’ll replace ‘em for you. I highly recommend.
Some Notes on Sheets:
If the words like “percale,” “sateen,” and “weave” were foreign to you, let me explain:
Thread Count: To be blunt—thread count is kind of a scam. What used to be an indicator of quality is now largely a packaging ploy to get consumers to spend more doll hairs. Anything with a thread count higher than 500 starts to get suspicious, and may be composed of multi-ply threads of cotton (counted as individual threads), instead of single ply threads. This is an indicator of lower quality cotton or materials, as the multiple-ply threads strengthen lower-grade cotton. Instead of thread count, look for threads made of long-staple fibers and thin, single ply threads.
Weaves: The most common cotton weaves (yup, like a basket) you’ll see are percale and sateen. Percale is a one over, one under weave that feels cool and crisp, looks matte, and gets softer with every wash. Sateen is a three over, one under weave that’s super soft and smooth and looks slightly shiny. Sateen is usually a bit pricier than percale, since the fabric is close in feel to satin, and ultra wrinkle-resistant.