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The Ultimate Guide to Buying Silk Bedding

Guide to buying silk beddingDid you recently sleep on silk for the first time and decide it was the perfect fabric for you? Maybe you purchased silk sheets in the past and loved them, but can’t seem to find new ones that are as nice? Whether you are a first time buyer or a longtime fan of sleeping on silk this guide is for you!


  1. Why Should You Buy Silk Bedding Over Other Fabrics?
  2. Types of Silk and How They Compare for Quality.
  3. Summer vs. Winter Silk Bedding.
  4. Choosing a Silk Duvet.
  5. Choosing Your Bedding Colors.
  6. Buying Silk Bedding for Your Guest Bedroom.
  7. Caring for Your Silk Bedding.

Why Should You Buy Silk Bedding Over Other Fabrics?

This is a question we are frequently asked by new customers. They have heard that silks sheets are superior, perhaps from their mother or grandmother, and they are interested in giving silk a try. So why is silk considered the most luxurious fabric for bedding?

  1. Silk is incredibly smooth and feels great on skin.
  2. Silk is a naturally hypoallergenic fabric and resists dust, fungus, mold and many other allergens.
  3. Silk is great for all climates, from cold winter nights to broiling summers, you can sleep in silk and be incredibly comfortable (more on this below)
  4. Silk is the longest lasting natural fabric.
  5. Silk is great for your skin and hair, it helps you retain moisture and reduce damage caused by higher friction fabrics.

Choosing to buy silk is like choosing to buy Amish furniture – it lasts much, much longer than anything else you could purchase. When you get tired of purchasing new sheets each season, then it’s time to purchase silk. Silk outlasts every other natural fabric and has a lifespan on par with polyester. Unlike polyester, silk is wonderful feeling and good for you. That’s why it’s the best fabric.

However, be careful not to buy poor quality silk, as you’ll learn in the next section, the quality of silk sheets matters just as much as the thread count with cotton sheets.

Types of Silk and How They Compare for Quality.

When you begin shopping for silk you should first educate yourself on the varieties of silk available and the way in which silk is measured for quality. In general, it is helpful to know the following types of silk:

Charmeuse Silk is the most commonly recognized type of silk, it is used in everything from bedding to dresses to shirts. This type of silk is lightweight and has a natural elasticity, which makes it the ideal fabric for use in sheets, pillow cases and other kinds of bedding. The front of the fabric has a satin sheen to it while the back has a dull finish. Charmeuse is a cultivated silk, meaning that the silk worms which produce it are farmed for their silk.

mulberry silk mothMulberry Silk is the highest quality of silk and the most sought after for bedding. Most mulberry silk is actually charmeuse silk that was cultivated from a special type of silkworm which is fed a very strict diet. The Bombyx mori is the silkworm which produces mulberry silk and it prefers to eat the leaves of the mulberry tree. This particular type of silkworm has been bred in captivity for over 5,000 years! The careful breeding for quality and the strict diet of mulberry leaves are what make the end product, mulberry silk, the very finest silk available today.

Tussah Silk is actually silk made from wild silkworms which have not been bred. As the worms are not fed a strict diet or protected in the same way that cultivated silkworms are, this type of silk is not as soft or durable as cultivated silk. Most wild silk comes from India and not China.

Habotai Silk is another great silk that is commonly used for making sheets and bedding. Habotai is less expensive but also less durable than charmeuse. Often this type of silk is “washed” with sand to make it feel as soft as charmeuse. However this washing process also destroys the fibers in the silk, which means it doesn’t last as long.

Duppoini Silk is strong, lustrous but coarse and not ideal for sheets and most bedding. Sometimes it can be used in duvets, but because of its quality it does not work as well to maintain temperatures. The lower quality is due to the fact that this silk is made from irregular cocoons that are not of the same quality you would find in charmeuse silk.

Now that you know that mulberry silk is the very best silk you also need to learn a little about something called “Momme Weight”. Pronounced “mummy”, the momme weight is basically a measurement of the weight of the silk. This measurement was actually developed by the Japanese and is also used to measure things like pearls.

To calculate the momme weight you need to measure a piece of fabric that is 100 yards long and 45 inches wide. If this piece of fabric weighs 12 lbs then the momme weight of the fabric is 12. Obviously this isn’t something you can do for yourself while out shopping, so be sure to check labels for the manufacturer’s listing.

The type of silk also helps determine the momme weight of the silk. For instance habotai silk is usually only found with a momme weight of 5-15, while charmeuse silk can be anywhere from 12 to 30.

Ideally you want to look for a momme weight of greater than 14 for bedding. Here at ElleSilk all of our bedding is made with a momme weight of 22. You will almost never see bedding at a higher momme.

Summer vs. Winter Silk Bedding.

Silk throw blanketYou might not believe this, but silk is actually perfect for all seasons! Your silk pillowcases and sheets do not need to be switched out from summer to winter. If you get particularly hot or cold nights then we do recommend you purchase a different silk duvet for summer and winter. You can also try purchasing a silk blanket for winter, for a little extra warmth.

Why is silk so flexible? To start silk doesn’t bunch up, which means it provides you entire body even heat. So your feet are just as insulated as your upper body, and your own body can better regulate temperate.

Ever wake up in the middle of the night sweating buckets from the heat of your bedding? That’s because most synthetic fibers and other traditional bedding materials like down trap air. Over the course of the night your body heat slowly builds up until it becomes unbearable. Your sweat is also trapped inside the bedding and unable to evaporate, so you end up with disgusting wet sheets that are impossible to fall back to sleep in. This is especially problematic for women who are going through menopause, as their body cycles from hot to cool to hot again the typical cotton sheets can’t accommodate the changes in heat and they wake up continuously from discomfort.

The beautiful structure of silk at a microscopic level is what allows a small, but effective, amount of air to naturally help your body regulate its temperature. As you overheat your body perspires and silk’s breathable nature allows that moisture to escape thus cooling your body, this is known as a wicking effect. As you cool off less moisture is produced and silk helps your body retain the natural heat it produces. Not only that but silk gives an even amount of cooling throughout the night so your body doesn’t need to be constantly readjusting.

You could buy expensive synthetic bedding which also has the same effect, but why? You are only introducing more chemicals into your environment and silk is a completely natural fabric that provides the same wicking effect.

Choosing a Silk Duvet.

The first thing you must do when choosing a silk duvet is consider the season you’ll be using it for. As we mentioned above, having a different duvet for winter and summer is recommended. Thicker silk duvets are ideal for winter as they trap more of your body’s natural heat, while thinner ones are ideal for summer as they allow more air to cool your body.

When shopping for silk duvets you should look at the tog to identify how warm or cool the duvet is. The tog is a rating of how insulating a particular duvet or other kind of fabric is.

Summer weight silk duvetThe ideal summer duvet is usually between 2-4 tog and has no additional fabrics added to it. Making sure that this duvet is pure silk is very important if you want to stay cool all summer long. Take a look at our very own summer silk duvet for more information.
Fall spring silk duvet Some individuals also like to use a spring and fall duvet, these typically have a tog of around 8-11. If you live in more moderate climate you might also opt to use this kind of duvet for most of the year. A fall or spring duvet can also be helpful if you are looking to save money and only want to purchase a single duvet.
mulberry silk duvet for winterDuring winter you’ll want many layers of silk to keep you warm, we recommend at least 12 tog and our winter duvet has 13 tog. For especially cool climates you might want to consider a cotton covered silk duvet. For the most part, you will find that even our pure silk duvet is extremely warm throughout the winter.

Choosing Your Colors.

Finally! The fun part of shopping for silk bedding. Choosing a color combination that works for you and your decor is very important. Not only will the colors you choose enhance your mood but they can also help you fall asleep easier.

dark blue silk duvet coverLuxury silk bedding set

Blue – is a beautiful color but did you know that it’s been proven over and over again to have an impact on sleep? A study in 2013 show that individuals sleeping in a blue room had the most sleep. When you think of blue thoughts of peace and calm enter your mind. Blue is a naturally calming color and if you are not using blue in your room already then consider buying a blue duvet or a blue bedding set to really make an impact on your sleep.

If blue is the best color for your bedroom then what are the worst? You might automatically think red or yellow would have the opposite effect, but actually purple, brown and grey were ranked the worst! If possible avoid these colors for your wall paint, bedding and anything more than just accents.

If you are looking to enhance your love life then colors like gold, yellow and orange have been shown to increase libido. While in the same 2013 study it was found that red decor did not lead to increased romance in the bedroom.

Want a great night’s rest but not sure if blue is the color for you? Green and orange decor also have a positive effect. Mix and match these colors for a restful and rejuvenating night’s sleep!

Buying Silk Bedding for your Guest Bedroom

If you want to enhance the stay of your guests and impress them at the same time then silk bedding is definitely the way to go. Not only is it a real treat for those that have never slept in silk before, but with all of silk’s health and sleep benefits it will help cut down on crankiness from jet lag.

luxury silk bedding setThe perfect guest bedroom should look elegant, which is why we recommend purchasing one of our luxurious silk bedding sets. Our 8 piece sets include a duvet, flat sheet, oxford and housewife pillowcases and silk mattress covers. The incredible designs will enhance any room and make them appear incredibly elegant!

If you really want to make your guest’s stay special then purchase a silk eye mask for them to take home with them. These eye masks are ideal for helping your guests get to sleep and are an affordable thank you gift for their stay.

Beyond purchasing a silk bedding set you should also purchase a silk blanket or throw for them. These blankets are warm, soft and perfect for the guest who is fickle about how much or how little coverage they want at night.

Caring for Your Silk Bedding

Now that you’ve been sleeping in silk you’re probably wondering – how often do I need to clean my sheets? Can I wash them? Do they need to be dry cleaned?

The wonderful thing about high quality silk is that it naturally repels dirt, dust, oils and other grime that your bedding will accumulate. Silk bedding can thus be washed less often than traditional cotton or synthetic fibers.

Most silk can be machine washed and air dried, although you should always see the specific instructions for that product. In general we recommend the following:

Basic rules for washing silk:

  • Never use bleach or any bleaching agents! These damage the fibers and shorten the lifespan of your silk.
  • Never machine dry! High heat and the tumbling motion can damage the fibers as well.
  • DO machine or hand wash your silk with cold water.
  • DO air dry your silk.
  • DO lightly iron your silk on the cool setting on the inside of the fabric.

Some items like silk blankets, duvets and pillows require special care. Please see our full care guide for more information on each product.

Silk Pajamas is the Most Comfortable Choice

silk pajamasWe’re always looking for the most comfortable silk pajamas to wear while we sleep. There’s nothing worse than being uncomfortably hot or too cold in our sleepwear when we settle in for the night. Other types of pajamas made of flannel, cotton or man-made fabrics seem to rub us in all the wrong places and can feel rough on sensitive skin. If you’re unhappy with your current sleepwear, it’s time to try silk pajamas. Silk pajamas are lightweight, breathable, and made of high quality mulberry silk.

Quality silk is essential for the most comfortable silk pajamas, and this is why using the same mulberry silk in silk pajamas. High-quality silk pajamas will drape around your body gently and will not pull, rub or irritate your skin like other fabrics tend to do. The amazing temperature regulating properties of mulberry silk pajamas will allow you to feel comfortable while you sleep no matter if it’s summer or winter. You will never feel too cold or too hot in silk pajamas. In addition, silk pajamas also help to keep a consistent level of moisture in your skin. You will never dehydrate wearing mulberry silk pajamas and you will not perspire either. Silk pajamas are highly breathable allowing air and moisture to circulate freely, regulating both the temperature and water content of your skin.

Quality silk pajamas for women are made of mulberry silk, which also implies exquisite seams, symmetry of cut, and an overall luxurious look and feel. For the ultimate in comfort, start sleeping in silk pajamas tonight!

Silk Robes are Best Gift for Your Bridesmaids

silk robesPlanning a wedding can get a little crazy, there are so many things that need to be considered and organized within such a short space of time. One such decision you must make is what to gift your bridal party. While bridal party gifts are not essential they are however a nice way to express your gratitude towards your bridesmaids for all their efforts in helping make your wedding day special. An ideal and unique gift for your bridesmaids’ is silk robes.

If your bridesmaids are spending the night before the wedding with you this will be the perfect opportunity to give them silk robes as their gift. As they can all wear their new silk robes which will make for great photos. Having a girls only night before the wedding with your bridesmaid’s will take you back to your childhood and the excitement that came with having a sleepover. Lovely and soft silk robes are a guaranteed winner in our eyes, unless you know your bridesmaids prefer a nightie. Depending on your budget you might also like to pair your gift with a silk eye mask. A silk eye mask is both practical and unique. As you’ve probably heard before the bride and her bridesmaids’ really do need their beauty sleep the night before the wedding and a silk eye mask can help. You can choose to buy your bridesmaids just one element or put them altogether in a sweet little bundle.

The beauty of this type of bridal gift is that your bridesmaids can actually reuse their silk robes and are sure to appreciate the thought and really who doesn’t love silk robes? Silk robes for women are a truly convenient gift.

Silk Sheets or Satin Sheets

silk sheetsOne of the most common questions we hear is: Are your sheets satin? The answer to this seemingly simple question is a bit more complicated: When most people think of ‘satin sheets’ they recall the disco days of the 70’s: When the height of cool was satin sheets. Satin sheets were shiny, satin sheets were slippery, satin sheets were hot, and satin sheets were synthetic. Silk sheets, on the other hand, are not always shiny, not always slippery, always breathable, and 100% natural! Here are some points to remember:

First, shiny and slippery fabric is usually a satin ‘weave’. Satin sheets can be woven from any number of fabrics, but is most often associated with polyester or poly-blends. Unlike satin sheets, silk sheets do not slip around, as the twisted threads ‘catch’ each other. Second, non-breathable bedding is most likely a man-made fabric or a blend with a man-made fabric. Silk sheets are 100% mulberry, light, soft and very breathable. One of the greatest properties of silk sheets is that it regulates your body temperature. It will either cool you down or warm you up depending on what your body needs. Silk sheets are cool to the touch but can retain warmth better than many other fabrics. That is why it has been used for thermal underwear for skiers and hikers, and it is loved by those that are very hot sleepers including menopausal women.

Remember these all when you decide to purchase 100% mulberry silk sheets for your bedding.

Why should Invest in Silk Bed Linen

silk bed linenWith all the different options out there these days, it can be a bit overwhelming to make the best choice for your bedding needs. Here we will explore some of the reasons why you might want to invest in silk bed linen over other fine fabrics. We could come up with a hundred reasons but broke it down to a few main points.

Silk bed linen is a natural fabric. Why is this important? Since we spend half our lives in bed, we want to make sure that we choose a fabric to sleep on that will allow our skin to breathe. This will optimize the body’s ability to rejuvenate itself during sleep. It also means no night sweats or complications that might arise from allergies to synthetic or down bedding. Silk bed linen is hypo-allergenic. We have had some people report that they stopped getting migraine headaches after they slept on silk bed linen! Silk bed linen is a regulator of body temperature. That means it can keep you cool in the summer and warm in the winter. It does double duty. If you want the softest skin & hair, silk bed linen also has beneficial effects on both. Stylists recommend silk bed linen to their clients to help them keep their hair lush, healthy and strong. It is the perfect fabric for the delicate facial skin as it can aid with absorption of your night creams and prevent “pillowface” that over time can lead to fine lines & wrinkles.

We hope that you have a better understanding of why choosing silk bed linens after reading this.

Benefits of Mulberry Silk Comforters

mulberry silk comfortersDon’t look for the lowest price, the biggest box, or the prettiest logo. When choosing mulberry silk comforters, examine detail about the filling. It’s what makes mulberry silk comforters incredible… or inferior. If the manufacturer has skimped on stuffing, you’ll know about it (but not until your mulberry silk comforters unwrapped on your beds, and unreturnable). Worry not! We’re here to help!

Look at natural mulberry silk comforters…a real luxury choice. Mulberry silk comforters have similar properties to wool: it’s breathable, hypoallergenic and surprisingly strong. Silk worms spin their cocoons with a fiber stronger than steel! This is great for mulberry silk comforters filling as it means it survives washing and even tumble drying (although it does begin to lose its natural properties when it’s washed too much). Top with real mulberry silk comforters for a luxury finish!

Conventional mulberry silk comforters are often grown using a hormone disruptor to slow the growth rate of silkworms, extending the length of time they produce silk. In addition, silkworm pupae are killed before harvesting. Organic mulberry silk comforter avoids these methods for a more worm-friendly product.

Top Tips on Silk Filled Comforter

silk filled comforterMany people suffer from allergies, and it can make perfect sense to buy comforters that are filled with the man-made non-allergenic products such silk. Should you choose an easy care silk filled comforter, there is a choice as mentioned, silk is the very latest in fiber filling and is closest in feel to natural down as it is extremely light-weight and is wonderfully soft, and very competitively priced.

Luxurious silk filled comforter is available in three different categories – lightweight for summer, medium weight for all seasons and a combination for winter (simply made by buttoning together light and medium weight silk filled comforter together. What’s more silk filled comforter is hypo-allergenic, minimizing the risk of allergies such as Asthma. The care and attention that goes into making each and every one of silk filled comforter is simply unparalleled. Carefully constructed to contain weel over one hundred layers of premium Grade-A silk hand-stretched and stitched in place.

Silk filled comforters typically have better thermal properties than synthetic, and therefore need less filling to be able to achieve the same level of warmth. The higher the tog rating, the warmer the silk filled comforter. The best silk filled comforter typically has a box construction which means that the silk filled comforter has been specially sewn with even squares so that the filling doesn’t “move around” and hence no cold spots.

History of the Silk Dressing Gown

silk dressing gownNowadays, only a very small number of men still wear a silk dressing gown, which is rather sad. Due to the lack of demand for the last few decades, there are only a handful of manufacturers left that produce top-notch silk dressing gown. By far the most gowns today come with a shawl collar in the wrap-around style. Only the most expensive off-the-rack silk dressing gown comes with velvet lapels and cuffs or other luxurious trimmings. Of course, there is always the option to go bespoke, and every good shirt maker should be able to tailor a beautiful mulberry dressing gown but it is rather costly.

Men’s silk dressing gown can easily be dated back to the 17th century. This silk dressing gown was only worn inside and sometimes called Indian or Persian silk dressing gown due to their Eastern origin and Oriental cut, was similar to a kimono. Just like today, silk dressing gown did not have buttons and were instead worn with a sash. Alternatively, silk dressing gown had frogged button closures, which can now be found on Smoking Jackets. In the 19th century, silk dressing gown proved to be particularly suited to the gentleman for his morning toilette as well as in the evening. By the 1860’s the silk dressing gown had mostly evolved into its current shape, cut with a broad rolling shawl collar, which reached almost to the waist and a string or a sash.

In the beginning of the twentieth century, central heating was still an uncommon luxury and consequently, silk dressing gown was primarily functional and necessary to stay warm while at home. This trend continued, and by the mid-twenties, a fashion-conscious man was almost as thoughtful in choosing his mulberry silk dressing gown as in choosing his topcoat.

Types of Silk Sheets

silk sheetsWhile many silk sheet sets are sold as ‘silk’, not all of silk sheets are the same quality. Different silk sheets have different blends, a different momme weight, and can be of varying levels of purity. In fact, the cheapest silk sheets are usually no more than 15 per cent silk. Unless sheets are labelled as 100 per cent silk, they are likely to be a blend of polyester, cotton, or another smooth, silky material. Usually people with a lower budget choose the lower blends of silk, which are easier to care for as well compared with 100 per cent silk sheets.

Another difference between silk sheets types is the momme weight. Momme weight is similar to thread count in other fabrics, but because this method is not a good measure of quality for silk sheets, momme is used instead. Momme describes the weight of silk per 100 metres, usually measured in pounds. Silk sheets range between 6 and 30 mommes with the highest being pure silk which is actually quite transparent. Standard silk sheets usually range between 15 and 22 mommes because pure silk sheets are more fragile than those with blends of other materials. Most experts agree that 18-20 momme is a good balance between quality and durability in silk sheets.

Silk sheets have the reputation of being very difficult to care for, but with a few simple preparations, 100% mulberry silk sheets can be relatively easy to care for. Silk is a beautiful, luxuriant fabric that is soft to the touch and pleasant to sleep on, which is one of the reasons that many people choose it for their bedding.

How to Wash Silk Bedding Sets

silk bedding setsWashing silk bedding sets is tricky business. Hand-washing is safe but time-consuming, machine-wash is risky but convenient. Using too much force for better cleaning may prove to be too risky, but just rinsing with water is not enough to clean off the stains. These are common dilemmas that silk bedding sets owners tend to run into; but worry not! Silk bedding sets aren’t as frail as some people make them out to be. Just follow my instructions and you will be fine.

The best way to wash silk bedding sets is using your own hand, it offers just the right amount of cleaning required. If you have the time to spare, you should always hand-wash your silk bedding sets and other smaller silk pieces in lukewarm water (30C/86F). Avoid regular soap because the basic nature of soap will damage silk bedding sets. If you cannot get your hands on specialized silk cleaners such as TENESTAR (it’s not that difficult to get to be honest.), you can use very light cleaning agents such as baby soap or wool cleaners (which are also used to clean protein fibers as wool is also made of proteins). After you have applied cleaning agents, you can rinse silk bedding sets with clean water or with diluted white vinegar.

Machine-washing mulberry silk bedding sets is somewhat risky. From a personal point of view, if your building only has those really old-style washing machines that don’t have a “delicate” cycle, I would advise you to find somewhere that have better washing machines.