Not all bed linens are created equal. Cosy flannel sheets are perfect for winter but would feel stifling in the warmer months. To find bedsheets that can withstand muggy, summer months, opt for natural fibres in breathable styles. Here are some tips to help you keep your cool during the dog days of summer.
Use Natural Fibers
For hot, sticky nights, the best type of bedsheets are made from 100 per cent natural fibres. This includes silk and different cotton blends, including percale, sateen and jersey. Natural fibres breathe, let air circulate and wick moisture away, which is important, considering that the average person gives off one pint of perspiration during an eight-hour sleep. Sheets made from synthetic fabrics aren't recommended because they don't allow air circulation, and the perspiration stays on your skin.
Cotton and Silk
The most luxurious bed linens are made from silk. They regulate temperatures beautifully, staying cool in the summer and warm during the colder months. The only drawback is that luxury comes with a steep price tag.
Cotton, however, is a great alternative. It is comfortable, durable, affordable and comes in several types of weaves. Two popular summer styles are 100 per cent cotton percale and sateen.
Percale is a flat weave with a high thread count. The thread count results in a tightly woven fabric that is crisp, durable and finely textured.
Sateen has the same luxurious feel as silk. Sateen sheets have a satin weave, which means they are woven so that one side has a smooth, shiny finish and the other has a matt finish. That's what gives sateen sheets their lustre. Double check that the sheets are 100 per cent cotton, because sateen can contain rayon.
Jersey sheets are also a good warm-weather option. Sleeping in jersey--especially 100 per cent Egyptian cotton--feels like going to bed in a comfortable T-shirt. Jersey bedsheets allow air circulation. Like silk, they feel cool when temperatures rise and cosy in the winter. Quality jersey sheet sets will have elastic all around the sheet, rather than just at the corners, to provide a nice snug fit to the mattress.
Thread count, listed on the label, is best gauge to determine the comfort factor for bedsheets. The count refers to the number of threads per square inch in the weave. The higher the thread count, the better the sheets will feel.
Generally, good sheets start with a thread counts around 250. Sheets with 300+ thread counts may be worth the splurge. Sheets below 175 are not recommended, especially on hot, muggy nights.