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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.

Shopping for Silk Sheets- Types of Silk

silk sheets

Shopping for silk, some basic types of it should be known. The main two types are listed below.

There are two basic types of silk, wild silk and cultivated silk. Wild silk, as you might expect, comes from wild silkworms. The filament threads from them are not long continuous threads like those from cultivated silk so it is not as durable or as strong as cultivated. For sheets, durability is a big consideration. Although they cost more, sheets made from cultivated silk are recommended because the thread strands are much longer. Cultivated silk bedding is most often referred to as Mulberry Silk bedding because that is the only food cultivated silkworms eat. Mulberry silk is the most expensive. Tussah, Habutai, and wild silk can all be quite nice too and are a little less expensive.

Silk Breathes

Why you want to choose silk for your bedding? Just for comfort? I don’t think so, silk sheets have so many advantages especially its “breathes”.

A silk comforter typically contains over one hundred layers of silk which makes it incredibly breathable and comfortable. Silk will wick away moisture from the body, keesilk sheetsping a person cool and comfortable all night long. That means that not only will it keep a person cool in the summer, but it is the perfect bedding choice for anyone who suffers from night sweats or hot flashes.

That doesn’t mean a person’s silk comforter should be stored away for the winter in favor of another type of comforter. Silk is great in the winter too although feeling the weight of a silk linen may not lead you to believe that. But it is true. Sleeping under a silk bed is like sleeping under a light fluffy cloud, one that will keep you warm and snuggly even when it is cold outside. Silk has a natural draping ability that some people call the “hugging effect.” It gently caresses and hugs the body which helps hold in body heat when it is cold.

This means a quality silk comforter will keep a person feeling “just right” in terms of warmth. It helps them not ever feel too warm or too cold but always “just right.”

So you understand, it is not only soft and elegant as you thought, it is also do a good favor to your healthy, why not choose it?

High quality silk bedding Durability

Never despise the thin string and its soft quality of your silk bedding sets,that will be beyond your idea, scientific proof exists that a fiber of silk that is of the same diameter as a fiber of steel is said to be stronger than the steel. That is pretty durable, although it is important to know that all silk is not equal. Cultivated silk is more durable than wild silk because silkworms grown in captivity are fed an exclusive diet silk sheetsof mulberry leaves and care is taken to ensure the cocoon each of the silkworms weaves is kept intact to that when it is softened and unwound into a silk thread filament it stays in once piece. And as amazing as it sounds, a single cocoon of a cultivated silkworm can be up to 1,600 yards long!

Wild silk, while still very nice, is typically called spun silk because the fibers in it are not naturally very long but instead the filaments are spun together to create length.

One silk thread is typically four to eight of the silk thread filaments twisted together. And because natural silk tends to adhere to itself, the silk filaments bond themselves making them less likely to pull apart even after years of use.

Silk will not deteriorate over time because of its natural fungal repellent and because chemicals are not used in processing, but this only holds true if you buy bedding that is 100 percent silk and not a blend of silk blend that contains silk plus other fibers that may or may not be chemical based or have been processed using chemicals.

A lasting time silk sheets, and both soft and healthy, how well the gift!

Advantages of Mulberry silk

As a complicated process of producing mulberry silk, it has superior advantage to the other types of silk in making silk sheets. What are they?

The resulting mulberry silk thread is the strongest natural fiber in the world, making it incredibly durable. A silk fiber the same diameter as a fiber of steel is stronger than the steel.

The mulberry silk thread is also rounder, finer, smoother, and a lighter more uniform color than silk harvested from the wild where those silkworms have to eat whatever leaves and plants that are available to them.

silk sheets Mulberry silk is also known as cultivated silk and bombyx silk but mulberry silk is the most commonly used term. It is also sometimes referred to it by its type which is thrown or reeled silk.

If you want the most luxurious, most durable, and finest silk bedding, look for silk sheets made with 100 percent mulberry silk and for silk comforters made with 100 percent mulberry silk floss.

A few other features of mulberry silk include it being 100 percent hypoallergenic and also being odorless and not needing any “airing out” before use like some of the lower quality wild silks.

We just list some of the merits of this kind of silk, however, we would definitely say mulberry silk is worthy of the silk king!

Two tips for silk

We have ever described many of the measurements to decide whether one silk linen or silk pillowcase is a high qualitied one, so many tips may you not remember all, just remember the following two, you won’t miss your perfect silk bedding sheets.

Although the type and quality of the silk is a major consideration, do not overlook the weight of it.  silk sheetsHigh quality silk bedding sets, should have a momme weight of at least 12, but more normally between 16 -19, and in the case of duvet covers as high as the low 20’s. The larger the momme number, the heavier the silk, and the more silk that was used in that fabric’s construction.  Any silk with a momme weight lower than 12 isn’t suitable for bedding, although there is a lot of it out there that does have a momme weight under 12. The lighter weight bedding won’t be as durable.

Don’t overlook thread count although check the momme weight first. That’s the more important consideration, but do opt for silk bedding with a thread count of 400 or higher to ensure you are getting the finest quality mulberry silk that will last for many years.

Master the two common methods, start your shopping for your silk bedding.

High quality silk bedding Hypoallergenic

We always talk about choosing the high quality silk bedding, why, after all, should we choose that? Only for its comfort or more reasons? Definitely more benefits for our people, and the first one is its hypoallergenic character.

Silk is made frosilk sheetsm the cocoons of silkworms. Like nearly anything in nature, there are natural occurring substances in the cocoon of the silkworm that protect from various threats. Because the process of turning those cocoons into silk is a gentle one that does not strip away those natural substances, the benefits of them are still in the silk when you purchase silk bedding. Dust mites, mold, and funguses all do not like those substances and stay away from silk. This means that silk bedding is a perfect choice for people suffering from asthma and from certain types of allergies such as being allergic to dust mites. That means a silk comforter, unlike a down filled comforter, is not a haven for dust mites.

Silk is also mold and mildew resistant because of the sericin, a naturally occurring protein in silk, as well as several kinds of amino acids. Such a healthy fabric, why not choose?

High quality silk bedding Good For the Skin

Good for skin, that is another benefit of high quality silk bedding. Actually, there are not any scientific proof to this silk sheetsbut it has been said on more than one occasion that the amino acids in silk are good for a person’s skin and help delay wrinkling in the skin as well as being good for a person’s hair. They are also said to be helpful to the central nervous system helping to calm a person.

So even if you cannot afford to splurge on a whole set of silk bedding, invest in at least one pair of silk pillowcases. Anything that can help me avoid wrinkles for as long as possible and that may help me avoid having any more bad hair days is something I want.

A perfect silk , and also more perfect for women’s Skin care, and high quality is needed!

How mulberry silk is made(II)

The cocoons are then kept in a warm place for several days.  Great care is taken to ensure the silkworms do not hatch into moths because that would damage the cocoon and break the silk filament it has woven.  To harvest the silk from the cocoons, they are placed in water to soften the filament.  The softened filament is then unwound from the cocoon.  One filament can be up to 1,600 yards long.  It takes 4-8 of the silk filaments woven together to create one mulberry silk thread.

The silkworms may have a short life with their only purpose to be providing silk, but those short lives are pampered ones.  In addition to the constant fresh supply of mulberry leaves available to them, their environment is strictly controlled to prevent them from being subjected to loud noises and strong odors such as those from fish and the human odor of sweat.

Such complicated and cautious care for the silkworms, then the great mulberry silk comes into being. It is a process the Chinese developed thousands of years ago and have perfected, making them the world’s experts in producing the finest silk, so If you would like to purchase some silk bedding or silk blankets for your baby, China will be your first choice,

How mulberry silk is made(I)

silk sheets

Mulberry silk is always considered as the most expensive type of natural silk. Its smoothness and stronger fiber, both show the unique characters of it. What makes it so expensive and why is it superior to other types of silk? Let me start by telling how mulberry silk is made.

Mulberry silk is made from the silkworms of the Bombyx mori moth. The moth has one job to do and that is to lay eggs. After it lays about 500 eggs, its job is finished and it dies. The tiny pinpoint size eggs are kept at 65 degrees Fahrenheit with the temperature slowly and carefully raised to 75 degrees Fahrenheit to hatch the eggs.

The tiny silkworms that are born are then fed an exclusive diet of mulberry leaves 24 hours a day, 7 days a week (mulberry leaves are the only food the Bombyx mori moth will eat).  After about a month of the constant gorging on the mulberry leaves, the silkworms will have increased their weight about 10,000 times and will have built up enough energy to start spinning their cocoon.  It takes anywhere from three to as long as eight days for the silkworm to weave the cocoon.

Shopping for Silk Sheets- Satin versus Silk

silk duvet kingAnother matter you need to know for silk bedding shopping is about the sain silk. When looking at silk sheets you may be confused by sheets labeled “satin silk.” Satin does not refer to the actual fabric. Satin refers to the weave of the fabric. The silk filaments in satin silk are woven in a way that gives the fabric a smooth shiny surface. Satin silk woven from mulberry or cultivated silk threads is very luxurious and durable. It may make your pocketbook cry a little too because it’s also expensive. But high price, high quality which will lead to high enjoyment, so don’t you think it is still worth buying?