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Cooling sheets may seem a little counter intuitive given that a sheet has classically been thought of as something that keeps you warm.
Cooling Sheets: How They Work and What To Look For
6 min read
Are you interested in a shocking fact about one of the most important parts of the day? Here it goes: in 2022, only 32 percent of Americans claim to have an excellent quality of sleep. If you’re not finding that figure as hard to believe, you might be part of the 68 percent who has a less-than-excellent time sleeping each night.
There may be many reasons for this, but one of the easiest-to-fix reasons is being too hot each night when trying to sleep. Thankfully, there are a few great solutions, including investing in cooling bed sheets.
What are they, and how can you pick a great bedding set? We’ll discuss that and more below.
Why Is Good Sleep Important?
What does a good night’s sleep matter in the grand scheme of things? It means a whole lot, actually! There are so many different reasons why it’s important to sleep well at night.
It’s the time your body has to heal, rest, and process. During the day, your body is constantly on the move. While you sleep, it does extra work to keep you healthy, help your memory, and prepare you for what you’ll face in the morning.
When you don’t give yourself the sleep you need, it can be damaging to your physical and mental health. Did you know that the temperature of the room you’re in while you sleep can make a big impact on your sleep quality?
Your body temperature needs to drop a bit while you sleep in order for you to have a truly restful night’s sleep. If you fall asleep hot, your body won’t sleep into the deep sleep it needs. Instead, you’ll remain in the lighter stages of sleep all night.
Whether you keep your room too hot or your body naturally sleeps warm, cooling down will help you get better sleep. If you find yourself constantly waking up soaked with sweat, it might be time to invest in a set of the best cooling sheets. Your body and brain will thank you.
How Do Cooling Sheets Work?
Cooling sheets work by drawing the heat away from your body through the sheet itself, helping it disperse. Instead of sticking to you all night, the heat moves away from the body, allowing for better airflow and helping you avoid overheating.
There are a few different types of sheets that may be considered “cooling.” Some are simply made with breathable fabrics, such as eucalyptus sheets or cotton percale sheets. Others have moisture-wicking properties. Finding pillowcases and sheets that keep you cool may seem like a tough job, but many great options are currently available.
Benefits of Using Temperature Regulating Sheets
Why should you use cooling sheets? First of all, you sleep much better when you’re cool.
Your body naturally wants to cool off when you’re asleep, and all the things on our beds, from our mattress to the fitted sheet to the flat sheet and the duvet cover, add extra layers of heat that can affect sleep quality. Having breathable sheets can be a game changer.
Many people consider themselves hot sleepers. However, there’s a difference between simply sleeping hot and suffering from night sweats. If you wake up often covered in sweat, you may have more of a problem than simply wearing too many blankets.
Night sweats can be a sign of an underlying health problem. Check with your doctor to get to the true root of the issue, but in the meantime, you can find sheets for night sweats to go a long way to helping you feel better while you sleep.
What To Look For When Buying Cooling Sheets
If you’re looking for a guide to finding out what sheets keep you cool, you’ve officially found it here. There are three main factors to consider when choosing your cooling sheets.
We’ll discuss each one briefly before making a few recommendations. The first factor is fabric type, and quite a few different fabrics can be considered “cooling.”
Bamboo is not only cooling, but it’s also fairly eco-friendly. A newer material for use in sheets, bamboo ventilates quite well. It also feels lightweight, durable, flexible, and soft, especially 100 percent viscosebamboo sheets.
Organic cotton is ultra-breathable and among one of the softest types of sheets. Don't count cotton out if you’re looking for a great cooling sheet set. It’s incredibly breathable, making it a popular choice for cooling sheets.
This linen fabric is incredibly soft and breathable. It has moisture-wicking properties and is usually made from trees such as eucalyptus and birch. If you enjoy linen sheets, this is a good choice for you.
Some microfibers can be cool, but they aren’t the best option. Microfiber tends to trap heat as opposed to allowing airflow and drawing heat away from the body. While it’s not as bad as rayon, it also isn’t as good as Egyptian cotton or bamboo.
While you may have never heard the words “silver” and “sheets” mentioned in the same sentence before, there are actually quite a few silver-infused sheets out there. Believe it or not, silver sheets feel cooler to the touch than normal sheets. Like silver spoons feel cold to touch even when sitting at room temperature, silver bedding feels the same.
Natural silver technology has other benefits, too; it can prevent odor, deter bacterial growth, and promote healthy skin. Silver ions (woven into the fabric) contain a positive charge that attaches to bacteria like a magnet and prevents 99.9% of bacterial growth from the inside out.
By preventing bacterial growth, your sheets stay cleaner, which means less chance of developing odor, and laundry can be done less frequently. Having cleaner sheets also makes your skin happier because it isn't rubbing against dirty fabric all night.
Look for sheets that are made of cotton, bamboo, or microfibers. If you want to improve your sleeping experience, try cooling sheets made with natural silver technology.
The next thing to consider when buying cooling sheets is the thread count.
Is a Higher Thread Count Always Better?
According to marketing, higher thread counts are better. Unfortunately, that isn’t the case. In fact, the higher the thread count, the worse the sheet will be at keeping you cool each night.
Aim for sheets within the 200-400 range for breathability and comfort. If you get up past the 1,000 thread count, the sheet will get thicker and loose its flexibility and breathability.
A high thread count isn’t necessarily a good thread count. A luxury sheet doesn’t need a crazy high thread count.
The final thing to consider is the weave type.
What Type of Weave Is Cooler?
There are two main types of sheet weaves, percale and sateen. While sateen sheets are super soft, percale sheet sets have the advantage of being crisp and cool.
The downside to percale weave sheets is that they may wrinkle more than sateen weave sheets. Sateen tends to be more wrinkle-resistant. But that is something you could overlook if you’re trying for the coolest sheets.
Whether you’re buying sheets in-store or at an online retailer like Amazon, keep these things in mind so you know what questions to ask as you’re on your hunt for temperature-regulating sheets.
Who Needs Cooling Sheets?
Anyone can use cooling sheets, but there are a few types of sleepers who may benefit the most from this type of sheet set.
Cooling Sheets for Hot Sleepers
If you sleep hot, cooling sheets are an easy win. There are many reasons you may be a hot sleeper, but your sheets may be part of the problem.
You may want to look into a bamboo sheet set or a eucalyptus sheet set for their cooling properties. Look at your mattress topper and ensure that it isn’t absorbing heat while you sleep, causing you to sweat.
If you’re still finding yourself warm while you sleep, take a few extra steps to cool down. Consider getting thicker blinds which block out more light and absorb some heat. A cold shower before bed helps drop your body temperature and produces more melatonin.
Sleep naked (controversial, yet highly effective) to put less fabric between you and the cooling sheets. Limit food and exercise in the few hours right before bed. Take some of these steps, and you should see some improvement in your body temperature each night.
Sleeping well starts with sleeping at the right temperature. Cooling sheets may be a great option if you tend to get hot each night as you sleep. Remember to pay attention to the type of fabric, the thread count, and the weave as you search for the best cooling sheets. It is possible to get a good night’s sleep, and your sheets can play a big part in that process.