Many people believe that the higher number of threads, the better quality their bed sheets will be. Say that you just walked out of the store with your new 1000-thread-count set of sheets, thinking you purchased an ultra-high-quality set that is four times better than one with 250 threads. Here’s why that’s not the truth, and here are 3 thread count myths that need urgent debunking.
Myth #1 – bigger is better
Bigger is always better, as we’ve been told to believe all of our lives. Unfortunately, this logic doesn’t always work out. A 500-thread count means that a square inch of a fabric has a total of 500 threads. This means 250 length-wise and another 250 width-wise. However, many manufacturers use sneaky methods when presenting their thread count numbers. In reality, there’s only so many threads that you can fit within a square inch.
A 1000-thread-count sheet in some instances may only have 500 threads as well. Threads consist of strands and a single strand is called a ply. One thread can have two or more plies twisted together, and as such it’s a two-ply or a three-ply strand. Instead of counting it as one, manufacturers count a two-ply strand as two individual strands. All of a sudden, a 500-thread-count sheet becomes a 1000-thread-count sheet with just a simple manipulation in numbers.
As two or more plies are twisted together to make up for one thread, the individual plies have to be thinner. This means lower quality and strength. As a result, a proper 500-thread sheet may actually be more quality than a false 1000-thread sheet.
The bottom line is – don’t get persuaded by big numbers, as they’re not an indicator of quality. As experts say, a nice 200-count sheet will do the job if you’re on a budget. For the best quality, you should aim for sheets in the range of 300 to 400 threads.
Myth #2 – cotton type doesn’t really matter
Besides the number of threads, the second thing you should look out for is the type of cotton used in the sheets. You should look for cotton with long-staple fibers, as this is the only type of cotton that ensures single-ply threads. There are three types of this cotton: pima, Egyptian and Supima. This doesn’t necessarily mean that other cotton types are not good quality. However, a combination of the right thread count and type of cotton should be a good indicator of a sheet’s quality. Bear in mind that Egyptian may simply mean that the cotton originates from Egypt, which speaks nothing about how quality it is.
Myth #3 – the only effect is the feel of the cotton
You may be wondering how a 1000-thread count sheet with low-quality threads can affect you as a consumer, besides how the sheet feels to the touch. As there are multiple thin threads, the sheets become dense. As a result, there is less air coming through and the temperature rises, making you sweat under the sheets.
What’s more, as there are shorter plies within a single thread, this also means that they are weaker. As such, they are more prone to pilling. Instead of a silky-smooth 1000-thread sheet, you may end up with a pilling, bumpy mess that is anything but pleasant to the touch.
With these 3 thread count myths out of the way – you’re bound to make your next sheet purchase a win. Opt for 300-400 threads and long-staple cotton and you can sleep tight knowing that you made the right choice.