For more than two centuries, Egyptian Cotton has been known as the finest fiber in the world. When weaved into high-quality Egyptian Cotton Sheets and Duvet covers, the fabric gives a premium and luxuriously smooth feeling to the user. Since they are costly, it is important to understand the fabric and learn how to identify the best Egyptian cotton sheets.
Egyptian Cotton Sheets are considered the world's most luxurious and premium-quality bed sheets. They are known for their soft and fine texture, and due to their extra long fibers and fine weaving pattern, these bed sheets can serve you for the longest time. The best quality Egyptian cotton sheets have a thread count of 400 to 700.
Egyptian cotton, or long and staple cotton, has exceptionally strong and fine fibers that do not break or tear but rather get softer over time. Today, some of the best Egyptian Cotton Sheets are manufactured by brands like Mayfair Linen, Conne Home, Brooklinen, and others. Continue reading to learn more about Egyptian Cotton Sheets and what are some of the best buys in this line.
What Is Egyptian Cotton Sheet?
As the name suggests, Egyptian Cotton Sheets are made from cotton (Gossypium barbadense) grown in Egypt. The particular species of cotton is native to southwest Ecuador and Peru. The fertile soil of the Nile delta and the climate of this region were ideal to produce high-quality cotton with exceptionally long fibers. These crops usually have a height of about 1 ¼ to 2-inch longer than regular cotton.
With the advancement of agriculture, today Egyptian cotton is cultivated worldwide, especially in countries such as China, Egypt, India, Sudan, Peru, Australia, some parts of the USA, and others. It is also known by names such as Pima Cotton or Extra Long Staple (ELS) cotton and constitutes about only 5% of the world's total cotton production.
The first kind of Egyptian Cotton sheets was produced and commercialized in the 1800s. Egyptian cotton is highly prized because of its exceptional and extra-long fibers than regular cotton. The longer and the finer fibers produce smoother yarn. When they are weaved tightly, the cloth turns out to be luxuriously soft. Egyptian cotton can be weaved into either high-quality percale or sateen bedding to offer an exceptional and luxurious feeling. Because of their unique properties, products made of Egyptian cotton have high demand in the international market.
Egyptian Cotton vs. Regular Cotton
The plant that produces Egyptian cotton takes a longer time to grow than a regular cotton plant. The cotton produced is thus longer and finer. Egyptian cotton is better than regular cotton because of the following fine characteristics:
- It is more breathable, moisture-wicking, and absorbent than regular cotton. This primarily helps in regulating body temperature, which is important for comfortable sleeping.
- Perfect for all-year-round sleeping. It draws away moisture when you are hot and locks in the warmth with your comforter/ duvet to help you feel cozy when the temperature is cold outside.
- Produces super smooth yarns and is thus a softer fabric than regular cotton.
- Creates a beautiful drape and a superior hand-feel which makes your bedding feel premium.
- The fibers and the final woven material is stronger and more durable than regular cotton.
- Since they are more long-lasting, they help in reducing the carbon footprint (the lesser the need to replace, the lesser will be the waste).
However, on the downside, Egyptian cotton is more expensive than regular cotton. Sometimes you may find cheap products labeled as Egyptian cotton bedding, however, most of them are not made of 100% pure Egyptian cotton. Cheap Egyptian cotton bedding may have a mix of regular cotton or other synthetic fibers, or they may be manufactured via a poor spinning process. Poor spinning or combing results in shorter and rougher fibers, which is not really what buyers are looking for.
What Thread Count Is Best For Sheets Egyptian Cotton?
Going by the definition, a thread count measures – 'the number of threads woven into 1 square inch of the bed sheet'. Or, we can say, the 'thread count' indicates how tightly woven the fabric is. In general, the more the thread count is, the stronger and more durable the fabric is.
The best Egyptian cotton sheet will usually have a thread count between 400 to 700.
How To Wash Egyptian Cotton Sheets?
Always follow the instructions mentioned on the label for the best care of your expensive Egyptian cotton sheets. This step-by-step guide will help maintain and restore fresh smelling sheets every time:
Step 1: If you have any obvious stains on your Egyptian cotton sheet, you can pre-treat with some vinegar + baking soda mixture. Apply the paste directly onto the spot and leave it for about an hour. You can alternatively add one cup of baking soda to the washing machine and run a rinse cycle. Both these chemicals are natural and they help in removing the stain very effectively. The treatment would not damage the sheet.
Step 2: Remove the bedding and wash your Egyptian Cotton Sheet on a gentle and cold wash cycle. Use a high-quality, pH-neutral, and allergen-free laundry detergent for washing dirty sheets. Set a gentle spin cycle.
Always remember to wash the sheets separately. Color, hooks, buttons, zippers, and other artifacts can damage the sheets. You are not recommended to use any fabric conditioner. Egyptian cotton sheets will get naturally softer with time.
Step 3: Once the washing cycle is complete, promptly remove the sheets and put them in the dryer. Do not use dryer sheets, however, you can use felt wool dryer balls with no harsh chemicals. You may also naturally air dry the sheets under the sun.
Step 4: Pure Egyptian Cotton has minimal wrinkling after washing. However, you can still iron them or use a garment steamer at the lowest heat setting for more clean and crisp bedding.
Some Tips To Remember When Buying Egyptian Cotton Sheets
- Pay close attention to sheets that have a thread count of 600 to 800. More often than not, these products may not have the same quality as mentioned in the packaging.
- Products labeled as 'Egyptian Cotton' are not as same as '100% Egyptian Cotton Sheets' (fine spun). The former may have a mix of other fibers.
- Pima cotton sheets, which also have ELES, are cheaper than Egyptian Cotton. So, if you are looking for a cheaper alternative, you can also consider buying Pima cotton sheets.
The Best Egyptian Cotton Sheets
Considering factors such as thread count, quality, and affordability, we have enlisted some of the best Egyptian cotton sheets below:
Reason to buy:
- 800 thread count.
- High quality at a reasonable price.
- Lightweight and crisp.
- Not slippery.
- Available in all sizes – Twin, Twin XL, Full, King, Queen, California King, etc.
- From vivid pastels to neutral shades, you can select between various color options.
- Although the packaging has a CEA trademark, it is not a true indication of its genuine quality. The tag does not confirm 100% pure Egyptian cotton.
Reason to buy:
- 500 thread count.
- Durable even after constant washing.
- 100% authentic Egyptian cotton.
- Very soft cotton.
- Low availability.
- Available only in standard sizes – Super King, King, Single, and Double.
Reason to buy:
- 480 standard thread count.
- Easy return and exchange within 365 days of usage.
- Smooth weave with a luminous finish.
- OEKO-Tex certified (good for the environment).
- Comes with perfectly sized enveloped pillowcases.
- Long and short tags on sheets for easy fitting.
- 100% long-staple cotton
- The fabric wrinkles after machine washing and may shrink over time.
- Limited color palette.
Not all costly products, reputed brand names, or sheets with higher thread count are true indicators of the genuineness of the product. To ensure authenticity, always ensure that the label reads '100% Egyptian Cotton Sheets'.
Feruza is a mom and a blogger. She had a neck pain for 15 years, which made her interested in everything about pillows.
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