When it comes to bedding, we all look for something that can give us maximum comfort. Getting a nice, plump mattress is one thing, but we mustn’t underestimate the influence a good (or bad) bed sheet has on the quality of our sleep. We really ought to invest more in our bedding knowing that bedtime is something we all look forward to after a long, productive day. And I’m not just saying this monetary-wise – time and effort must also be invested in knowing which ones are best. In this article, we will discuss and compare two of some the most popular types of bed sheets according to the material they’re made of– Bamboo sheets and Egyptian cotton sheets.
One important contributing factor to the quality of bed sheets is material. A sheet can be perfectly weaved, cost a hundred dollars, and have a thread count of 2000 but still feel out of sync because the material used is not good. The regulation of heat, softness or crispness of a fabric, and resistance to wear all depend on the kind of material used. So without further ado let’s get into the main topic of this article.
What is Egyptian Cotton?
Cotton – this is probably the first thing that comes to mind when we speak of bedding material. And true enough, this kind of material has been used for the production of thread and cloth since time immemorial – or at least for a couple of centuries.
Egyptian cotton, specifically, is made from the plant of GossypiumBarbadense which is actually the same plant used to make Pima cotton, one of the world’s best cotton sheets. The only difference lies in the location of their growth. Egyptian cotton is grown in Egypt (obviously) and thanks to the country’s climate,the plant grows longer staples perfect for weaving. A bed sheet made from 100% Egyptian cotton is guaranteed to be soft, smooth, and comfy.
Also, because Egyptian cotton fibers are longer compared to other cotton variants, they are made to produce thinner threads – and the thinner the thread that gets to be weaved, the higher the thread count. No wonder Egyptian cotton is dubbed as the “King of All Cotton”
What are Bamboo Sheets?
Despite being a recent player in the linen industry, bamboo sheets are gradually gaining popularity among many households. And this is for a number of good reasons which we will talk about later in this post.
Bamboo is a type of grass that grows into really high lengths – 3 to 5 feet annually at best. Like any other grass, it can grow and reproduce at incredible speed. They can grow in almost any climate but they do have a preference for the tropics. To make the sheet, bamboo stalks have to undergo a long process to extract the fibers. First, they’re cut into smaller pieces and soaked in a solution to dissolve the bamboo cellulose. After which, they are bleached and dried into plain sheets. These are then milled to produce the soft viscose that is used to create the thread manufacturers weave into bed sheets. It’s a tedious process but very much worth the wait.
Both sheets sound really promising but in order to get a better understanding, let’s evaluate these two excellent kinds of sheets by enumerating their pros and cons.
We’ll start off with the crowd’s favorite – Egyptian cotton.
Advantages of using Egyptian cotton sheets
1. It gives great comfort
Sheets weaved using Egyptian cotton are significantly softer compared to its cheaper counterparts. It has a smooth, cool feel on the skin that will certainly improve the quality of your rest.
2. It becomes softer after each wash
When it’s your first time buying a linen set made of 100% Egyptian cotton, you might wonder why people give so much praise to such a crisp-feeling sheet – especially when it’s Percale weave. Thing is, authentic cotton gets better every time it gets laundered. Be careful not to overwork it in the machine though or you may just get the opposite effect!
3. It’s durable
Egyptian cotton is, without doubt, a tough kind of material. Many can attest to using cotton sheets for over 5 years – or even a decade with the right care. Cotton also doesn’t require a lot of maintenance which is big plus.
Disadvantages of Egyptian cotton sheets
1. Use of chemicals and pesticides
Many cotton growers use pesticides and other pest-control chemicals to safeguard the growth of their crops. So much so that cotton is becoming a major contributor to air pollution.
2. Price is a bit higher
Pure Egyptian cotton comes at a price but its durability and comfort explain all the reasons why. There are cheaper varieties of cotton such as American upland cotton but they do not necessarily possess the same qualities as that of Egyptian cotton.
3. A little too heavy to hand wash
It is believed that the higher the thread count, the softer the sheet. While this is often true, it also goes to show that the sheet will be much heavier too – especially for hand-washing.
The problem with these sheets is that there is a lot of fake “Egyptian cotton sheets” in stores. Some of the sheets being sold as 100% “Egyptian cotton sheets” are nothing but fake imitation which means that consumers are being duped into buying fake sheets at the same premium cost of the authentic Egyptian cotton sheets. Due diligence on your part is required before buying expensive fake Egyptian cotton sheets.
Advantages of Bamboo sheets
1. Soft but light
Bamboo fibers are believed to be softer than cotton. Because of this, most bamboo sheets are not labeled with a thread count anymore. Even with a low thread count, bamboo sheets are guaranteed to be soft.
2. A natural germ fighter
The bamboo plant is naturally antimicrobial and antibacterial – bamboo sheets are too! Because of this healthy perk, you can rest easy knowing that your sheets are resistant to germs.
3. Hypoallergenic and environment-friendly
Bamboo, having a natural guard against harmful bacteria, don’t need pesticides or other chemicals to grow. Not only does that help reduce air pollutants, but can eradicate major concerns about allergic reactions as well. They’re resistant to mold, dew, and dust mites – a perfect match for your sensitive nose!
Disadvantages of Bamboo sheets
1. Rigorously processed
Because bamboo undergoes a very long process, some people believe that all its health-related properties are washed away as well. Although some studies beg to differ, still, the possibility remains.
2. Relatively new to the market
The production of bamboo as a linen material has only started in recent years. Compared to cotton that has a long history of being a successful bed sheet material, bamboo has only been out in the market for some years.
So after reading the benefits and cons of each which one do you think is the better choice?
Bamboo gives great comfort and has added benefits to health and given that we live in such a polluted world that we literally need all the help we can get. Although there are rumors that these benefits are untrue, or lost along the process, it is still worth a try – especially if your main concern is the welfare of your family. Even if you find out later on that it doesn’t really have germ-fighting properties, then it’ll be the same, comfortable sheet you would’ve enjoyed sleeping in anyway. And the price isn’t all that much of a risk. So if you look at it this way, isn’t trying a new alternative a harmless gamble? Feel free to check out our list of some of the best Bamboo sheets available in the market.
Authentic Egyptian cotton sheets are definitely superior material in sheets, excellently woven to produce a quality of sheets that is almost perfect. While Egyptian cotton sheets are on the higher price range compared to bamboo sheets, I think it’s worth paying that extra amount for comfort and durability. Provided it’s Authentic Egyptian cotton.
Ultimately, both Bamboo Sheets and Egyptian Cotton Sheets are superb choices!