The Best Blankets – 2019 Reviews and Buying Guide

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Quick Summary
Even from our earliest days, we tend to have a favorite and beloved blanket. And the desire for that cozy feeling doesn’t go away in adulthood.  While lots of materials can offer warmth, a good blanket does so much more by offering a look and feel that you love.

With such a diverse variety of blankets, it can be a serious chore to find the one that’s best for you. This guide helps narrow it down, offering you our top choices for the best blankets in several categories. In addition, we’ll describe the important background and shopping considerations that can help you get the most satisfaction out of your new blanket.

The Best Blankets of 2019

Editor’s Choice – Magic Linen Waffle Pattern Blanket

Best Wool Blanket – Creswick Australian Mills Wool Blend Blanket

Best Cozy Fleece Blanket – Great Bay Home Sherpa Stretch Knitted Blanket

Best Light, Summer Weight Blanket – 2PO 100% Cotton Thermal Blanket

How We Decided

 

24 blankets considered –– 52 hours of research –– 4 sleep experts consulted

Blanket Reviews

Magic Linen Waffle Pattern Blanket – Editor’s Choice

Highlights
  • Linen and cotton blend absorbs and wicks moisture
  • Stone-washing adds softness
  • Waffle pattern gives elegant style available in several colors
  • Warm enough for use in bed; light enough to use as a wrap or throw

The Magic Linen Waffle Pattern Blanket is our Editor’s Choice for its combination of warmth, style, and overall performance. It is made with a blend of linen (58%) and cotton (42%). Linen is derived from the flax plant and is known for being durable as well as moisture-wicking. Because the linen is stone-washed and blended with cotton, the blanket takes on a softer, more inviting feel without losing the benefits of the linen fabric. The waffle pattern and color choices give the blanket a classy appearance that fits in with all types of interior decorating. The blanket provides enough warmth to knock out a nighttime chill in the winter or to be used alongside a comforter or heavier blanket in the winter months.

This blanket is able to machine washed and dried, and given the quality of the materials used in making it, you can expect it to last for years. With its versatility, comfort, and appearance, the Magic Linen blanket jumps to the top of our list and stands out as our Editor’s Choice.

Highlights
  • Wool and nylon blend offers stretch and warmth
  • Wool naturally wicks moisture and regulates temperature
  • Stylish look available in multiple colors
  • Extra durability from high-quality Australian wool fibers

Our choice for the best wool blanket is actually a wool blend that comes from Creswick Australian Mills. This company has been making wool products since the 1940s and in this blanket combines 70% wool with 30% nylon to give the blanket a unique feel and look that has won over customers again and again. The combination captures the benefits of wool while also getting extra stretch and durability.

The wool in the blanket comes from Australian sheep and is known for its density. It is also wool that is recycled from surplus production and tends to have a feel that is simultaneously soft yet textured. Wool is naturally temperature regulating and able to provide warmth while wicking away sweat and excess moisture. It is also hypoallergenic and anti-bacterial.

The textured look of this blanket makes it usable in almost any bedroom, and it is also available in a broad range of colors to suit the color palette of your home.

Great Bay Home Sherpa Stretch Knitted Blanket – Best Cozy Fleece Blanket

Highlights
  • Plush fleece polyester for cozy comfort
  • Light enough for summer, heavy enough for winter layering
  • Multiple color and pattern choices
  • 30 day satisfaction guarantee

The Sherpa Stretch Knitted Blanket from Great Bay Home gets our recommendation as the best cozy fleece blanket. It is made with soft and textured polyester that offers the look and feel that fleece is known for. It is a lightweight blanket that is great for all-season use. In the winter, it can be layered among other blankets for extra warmth and softness, and in the summer, it can be used alone or as a throw. It is available in multiple solid colors and patterns allowing you to pick the one that will look the best in your bedroom or living room.

The Great Bay Sherpa Stretch blanket is sold at a price that fits most budgets, and it comes with a 30-day satisfaction guarantee that allows you to return it for a refund if you aren’t happy with it for any reason.

2PO 100% Cotton Thermal Blanket – Best Light, Summer Weight Blanket

Highlights
  • Made with 100% cotton for softness and absorbency
  • Lightweight for all-season use
  • 10+ colors to choose from
  • Textured weave enhances breathability
  • Accessible price for virtually all budgets

 

Our choice for the best light (summer) weight blanket is the 2PO 100% Cotton Thermal Blanket. This blanket is made with all cotton fibers delivering a blanket that is soft to the touch and durable like most cotton products. Cotton is absorbent, so the blanket helps pull sweat away from your body if you start overheating on a summer night. The patterned weave of the blanket also helps it dissipate heat and prevent you from sleeping too hot. At the same time, this blanket can still provide enough heat to be used in conjunction with other blankets during colder months.

In addition to its strong performance, this 2PO blanket is available at a budget price that is accessible to almost all shoppers, and it is offered in more than 10 colors to best fit your home decor.

Blanket Buying Guide

Before you start shopping for a blanket, it helps to know about your options. In this section, we’ll review types of blankets, common materials, and other useful factors to consider.

What to Think About When Buying a Blanket

A key component of making a solid blanket purchase is knowing what things you should be considering as you look at products and evaluate them. Some of the key elements to keep in mind are detailed below.

Blanket Type

Before you go to buy a blanket, you’ll want to think about how you plan to use a blanket and which type of blanket you’re looking for. Some of the types of blankets include:

  • Standard Blanket: while there’s enough diversity to say that there’s no such thing as a truly standard blanket, we can use this term for a blanket that has a size meant to fit the standard bed sizes (Twin, Double, Queen, and King).
  • Throw: a throw is a blanket that is designed primarily for use around the house rather than for use in bed. The size is usually 70 inches by 50 inches, and many throws are lighter and more decorative as they are commonly draped over a couch or chair.
  • Afghan: the defining characteristic of an Afghan is that it is crocheted or has a look usually associated with a crocheted blanket. With large holes in the stitching, these usually don’t prove much insulation for heat, but many people appreciate them for their role in adding to home decor.
  • Heated blanket: these are blankets with an internal electric mechanism built-in to provide heat when the blanket is plugged in and turned on.
  • Weighted blanket: this type of blanket has added weight, often ranging from 5 to 30 pounds, built into the blanket itself. This added pressure can help some people feel more at-ease in bed through a process known as grounding. In certain people, this is believed to spur the production of hormones beneficial for sleep and mental well-being.
  • Quilt: this refers to a type of blanket that has an interior layer covered by material that has been stitched together. Quilts are usually known for a decorative design on the exterior stitching.

Material

One of the biggest factors that influence how a blanket will perform is its material. The material directly affects warmth, feel, breathability, and more. There is no single material type that is the best; instead, the best blanket in any situation depends on your preferences (such as for softness) and how you plan to use the blanket (such as with a comforter, layered with other blankets, only during certain seasons, etc.). Some of the most commonly-used blanket materials include:

  • Wool: wool is a material derived from sheep that is well known for its antibacterial and moisture-wicking properties. It offers significant warmth, but it remains highly breathable, so it can be used in all seasons. Wool may not be as soft as other materials but still has significant softness.
  • Down: this material is taken from the underside of the feathers of ducks and geese. Down is very soft, light, and extremely powerful when it comes to insulating. It makes for excellent winter comforters but may also be used with less fill in all-season comforters. Given its characteristics, down tends to be expensive.
  • Cashmere: cashmere is similar to wool, but is often more expensive. Its soft feel pairs with many of the properties of wool, such as breathability and warmth.
  • Cotton: cotton is used in a broad array of bedding products thanks to its soft feel. It is generally smooth and plush and absorbs moisture (such as sweat), which gives it decent breathability. Cotton may be quilted to give it a textured feel and/or to have small gaps or holes in the threads to boost breathability even more.
  • Polyester: polyester blankets are usually a low-cost alternative to other materials. Polyester can be formulated in a handful of ways to give it different textures and properties. Polyester is less breathable than cotton and easily conducts static electricity.
  • Fleece: fleece is a synthetic version of wool. Usually cheaper than wool, it has similar warmth, density, and feel and is often a good alternative for people with wool allergies. Fleece is not as breathable as wool and can be unsuitable for certain times of the year.
  • Acrylic: acrylic is a synthetic version of wool or cashmere that is warm and hypoallergenic. Acrylic blankets tend to be both lighter and cheaper than wool and cashmere. Acrylic blankets easily conduct static electricity and is susceptible to pilling, a form of  normal wear and tear that causes tiny balls of fabric to form on the surface.

Weave

How a blanket is woven can influence its performance. For example, when the weave is very loose, it’s harder for a blanket to offer nearly as much in terms of heat retention. However, it may still be excellent for a light layer or for decoration. A tighter weave provides more heat but also usually less breathability and more issues with holding in moisture or sweat along with the heat. Knowing how you intend to use a blanket can help you choose whether you want a tighter or looser weave.

Durability

As you would expect, the material and weave of a blanket will have a direct effect on the durability of the blanket. Materials like down and wool tend to be very durable but also usually cost more and require more complex methods of cleaning and maintenance.

How you use your blanket will also affect durability as a blanket that gets nightly use or one that is regularly being moved around the house and used in different places is going to have more wear-and-tear and a greater need for regular washing that may cause it to break down more quickly.

Size

Most standard blankets are manufactured in accordance with normal mattress sizes. However, there are exceptions, including throw blankets, that are smaller. It’s always wise to check the dimensions of a blanket in relation to your bed to make sure that they will line up well.

Color and Pattern

Your blanket can play a significant role in your bedroom’s overall style and aesthetic. It can serve as a textural contrast or accent color for your bed. If you’re thinking about a blanket as part of your broader bedroom look, make sure to consider the design of your bedroom as a whole and the different sheets and other bedding that you usually use.

What Else Should You Consider?

While we’ve covered the primary considerations, there are a few other factors that may be relevant to many customers.

  • Organic materials: some materials, like cotton or wool, can be made to meet standards for organic production. Customers looking for organic materials can look for products with a certification according to the Global Organic Textile Standard (GOTS).
  • Return policy: if you’ve done your research carefully or if you’re buying one of our top picks, the odds are you won’t need to return the blanket. But if you find that you aren’t happy with your purchase, you may be able to return the blanket for a full refund. Look for blankets that have a customer satisfaction guarantee that lets you make a return in that case.
  • Ease of cleaning: most blankets can be easily cleaned with your washer and dryer. But some have very specific washing requirements, so if you want the simplest and most convenient cleaning option, make sure to look into the washing instructions before you buy a blanket.