There are many different types of bedroom sheets with various degrees of comfort and durability. Cotton sheets are the most common type sold and are available in an array of thread counts and weaves. Sheets made from flannel are thick and warm, while jersey sheets provide a soft and stretchable bedcovering. Polyester bedroom sheets are constructed of durable, man-made materials that can sometimes be uncomfortable on which to sleep. Another option includes satin sheets, which are very attractive, but not particularly comfortable, while silk bedcoverings usually have a soft, luxurious feel.
The majority of bedroom sheets are made of natural cotton threads, with the number of threads contained in these sheets significantly affecting the overall softness and durability. Higher thread counts usually produce a softer, more durable sheet, while lower counts typically feel rough and wear out quickly. The variety of cotton used for construction may also affect the softness and durability. Egyptian cotton is generally considered to be the softest and most durable variety.
Cotton bedroom sheets are also manufactured in several different weaves. Sateen weaves are very soft and smooth, but provide little durability, while a standard weave cotton sheet is usually more durable, but less soft than sateen. Pinpoint weaves are generally softer than standard-weave sheets and have greater durability than sateen-weave sheets. Also available are twill weaves, which are soft, durable, and produce a smooth, wrinkle-free sheet.
Flannel bedroom sheets are usually much thicker to provide added warmth during cold weather. The warmth and softness of these bedcoverings is determined by their weight rather than thread count or weave. A heavyweight sheet is typically softer, thicker, and more durable than a lighter version. Jersey sheets are made of a soft, stretchable material and can also provide some additional warmth in cold weather, as this material is very durable and usually makes an attractive bedcovering.
Polyester sheets are often used for commercial applications such as hotels and hospitals. This man-made material is usually very durable and easy to maintain. Polyester bedcoverings tend to be less comfortable than cotton sheets and their softness is not affected by thread count. Allergic reactions have also been known to occur when sleeping on polyester fabrics.
Satin bedroom sheets are usually very attractive, but may also be uncomfortable. It is important to choose the correct type for maximum comfort. Knit satin is often very stiff and shiny, while woven satin is usually softer and less glossy. Silk sheets are very soft and luxurious, but generally more expensive to purchase, but are naturally hypoallergenic and suitable for year-round use.