Buying Guide – How to Choose the Best Linen Sheets
Since you spend one-third of your life sleeping, it’s worth the investing in your bedding. Linen is an excellent luxury choice for sound sleep year-round because of the many benefits it offers.
This guide explains what linen is, how it’s made, and its benefits. We’ll explain what to look for when buying linen sheets for your bed and how to care for them to ensure the best performance and longevity.
What Is Linen and How Is it Made?
To comprehend the distinctive look, feel, and durability associated with linen bed sheets, it helps to understand the unique way the product is manufactured. Linen comes from the flax plant. Inside the flax plant are cellulose fibers and the very best linen comes from hand-harvested flax as it retains the longest fibers for a stronger material. Flax is harvested, dried, and threshed to remove the seeds.
The threshed stalks are then wetted and put through a process called retting before being dried and cured. Scutching is next; this process removes woody bits from the flax fiber. Then there’s heckling which splits and polishes the fibers and finally, it’s ready for spinning into a fine, thin yarn.
From there, the yarn is ready to be woven into sheets on a loom in a horizontal and vertical weave. High thread count is not a sign of good quality of linen sheets. Instead, a better gauge is fabric weight plus the harvesting, handling, and manufacturing of the yarn and fabric.
Is Linen Right for You?
Linen has a distinctly different feel than other sheets, even those made from natural fibers. It is not a traditional soft feel. Instead, there’s a crisp substantial feel that’s more like clothing. They don’t generally come out of the package ultra-soft like some cotton and synthetics. Instead, they require a break-in period and soften on subsequent washings. If you want ultimate softness from the first night, you may not have the patience for linen.
With proper care, however, you can get years of comfortable sleep with a softer sensation every time you launder your linens. And linen comes with the benefit of being breathable and naturally moisture wicking during the hotter months, while remaining exceptionally insulating when the weather turns cool. If you have trouble with temperature regulation, linen sheets may be an attractive solution.