As more and more people are starting to realise the joy of having a super-comfortable bed, the question of quality is starting to come up more frequently. Since you will end up spending close to a third of your lifetime sleeping, isn’t it important that the bed sheets you choose are the best?

Thread count has become the go-to buzzword for differentiating between good and poor quality sheets and pillowcases, with the idea being that the finer the woven threads, the softer the fabric. The following is a guide for helping you understand what thread count means, and whether or not it is truly important for choosing bed sheets.


What is thread count?

In the simplest sense, thread count is the number of horizontal (weft) and vertical (warp) threads that are woven into one square inch of fabric. So if there are 100 weft threads and 100 warp threads, then the thread count is 200. According to many consumer reports, a thread count of 150 is standard, a count of 200 is pretty decent, a count of 400 is quite fine, but anything over 400 may only mean a higher price tag.

When manufacturers claim high counts such as 800 or 1200, is it even possible? How can that many threads fit into a single inch? In short, it’s not possible, and yet many manufacturers use clever tricks and math to boost their thread count to such numbers.

Thread count considerations when buying sheets

Although it can be hard to know if the thread count of a sheet is correct based on industry standards, it’s still an important variable to consider when choosing sheets to buy. Thread count, where the sheet was woven, and whether or not it’s made from Egyptian cotton are the three main factors to consider. For the ultimate sheet, you would want it to be made from 100% Egyptian cotton, woven by a reputable Italian manufacturer, and with a minimum thread count of 200. After that, it’s all about colour and style preference.

Thread count: things to be wary of

One major thing you should be wary of when sheet shopping is extremely low-priced, high-thread count sheet sets. A complete sheet set with a high thread count that retails for $100 or less may not be the dream bargain you think it is. Generally, you should be able to get a 200-thread count sheet set for a queen bed that was made in Europe for between $150 and $250.

Get what you prefer

When it comes down to it, the most important thing about buying sheets is that you get something that you like, that feels good against your skin, and that fits within your price range. If you’re looking for something durable, any cotton woven with a 200 thread count or higher will be far more durable than cotton satin of the same thread count, and will be less likely to pill. If you want something that feels lighter and silkier, go for cotton satin with a 300 to 600 thread count instead.

Buying bed sheets isn’t rocket science, but there are quite a few factors to consider if you want to ensure quality. Always remember to read the labels before you buy and get the sheets that will give you the best sleep.