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Bedding: Modernizing Your Bedroom


The human race has a long-standing history in creating the perfect sleeping arrangements. It doesn’t cross our mind often, but there was a time when beds were nothing more than the stone floor of a cave or a pile of straw and leaves. It wasn’t until the Egyptians that the raised bed was perfected. Even then the majority slept on the floor. In fact, it wasn’t until the Renaissance Age that the middle class could afford a raised bed.

Aren’t you glad you have the luxury of a modern mattress and all the perks that come with it?

In this article, we’ll give you all the information you need about bedding. Pillows, blankets, mattress protectors and toppers, bed sheets, and mattress foundations are essential to a good night’s sleep as the mattress you sleep on.

Pillows

Just like a mattress, there is no one pillow that fits everyone’s sleeping needs. There are so many different types of pillow fillings and materials. Everything from down pillows to memory foam pillows, such as Tempur-Pedic’s pillows, is available to you. It can be hard to choose what you want. But rest assured. Here is a simple breakdown for what materials are out there.

Man Made Fillings

Man Made FIllings

Pillow FillingsProsCons
Feather-Soft
-Good support
-Keep shape
-Firm
-Sleeps hot
-Needs fluffing
-Encourages allergies
-Feather’s quills may poke out
Down-Lightweight and soft
-Cushy
-Hard to clean
-Increased risk of allergies
-Need fluffing
-More expensive
Sythetic Down-More cost effective
-Mimics true down pillows
-Hypoallergenic
-Easier to keep clean
-Gets lumpy
-Needs fluffing
Memory Foam-Conforming
-Holds a constant shape
-Durable
-Relieves back and neck pain
-Can smell of chemicals
-Too firm for those who sleep on their stomachs
Gel-Doesn’t flatten
-Moldable
-comfortable
-Hypoallergenic
-Best for side or back sleepers
-Stays at room temperature
-Isn’t as effective on hot nights
Micro beads-On the firm side
-Very supportive
-Conforming
-Encourages Airflow
-Durability
-Too firm for some people
-Admits a chemical odor
-Cannot be washed in the washer. It will tear and clog up the plumbing
-Beads can be inhaled if the pillow in torn

Natural Fillings

Natural Pillow FillingsDescriptionProsCons
Buck WheatA pillow filled with the husks of buckwheat.- breathable
-Hypoallergenic
-conforming
-Noise concerns
-Too hard for stomach sleepers
-Heavier than other pillows.
Kapok FiberKopak is a fluffy material that comes from the inside of a seed pod from the ceiba tree.-Hypoallergenic
-Mold and mildew resistant
-Feels like down
-Filling needs fluffing
-More costly side
CottonCotton is a fluffy material that comes from the cotton plant.-Mostly good with allergies
-Firmer than down
-Best for side and back sleepers
-Frequent cleaning
-Gets lumpy

Blankets

In the short history of bedding we gave you, we learned that blankets first came, as we know them, in Roman times. Since then blankets have not only become a source of warmth but pieces of artwork with colorful stories and symbolic pieces of history.

Some are passed down through families as wall hangings and others are just to keep someone warm.

Even though the first blanket was merely a wool piece of cloth, now blankets are so much more. They are made of all sorts of material and made with different weaves. They’re soft or scratchy. They are thin or thick. It all depends on your preference and what you need.

Mattress Protectors

Mattress protector protects the mattress from spills, body oils, debris, moisture, and pests. They’re very important to your health and to protect the warranty on your mattress.

Without the layer of protection of the protector, oils, dead skin cells, and fluids can contaminate your mattress without you even realizing it. This debris can invite pests such as dust mites and bed bugs. Neither of which make for great sleeping companions. Your sleeping hygiene and sleeping routines will go down the drain and, if you’re someone who has allergies, your nose will most likely become stuffed and you won’t be able to breathe well.

Here are the different types of mattress protector. If you want our recommendation on mattress protector or greater details on mattress protector, visit our other blog posts.

Zipper

This type of mattress protector encases the mattress and seals the entire mattress by zipping over the only opening. It provides complete protection for the mattress.

Fitted

This protector is like a fitted sheet. They are generally cheaper and better protection against moisture. They do not give the complete 380-degree protection zipper protectors do.

Strap

The strap styled protector is a piece of quilted fabric that lays over top the mattress, secured by elastic straps around the corners of the mattress. It does have a tighter fit than the fitted protector.

Mattress Pad

A combination of a mattress topper and a mattress cover. Although, it doesn’t do as good a job as either of them.

Mattress pads doesn’t have as much cushion as the mattress topper. But it isn’t as expensive as a mattress topper either.

Bed Sheets

There’s a lot more to bed sheets then you would have originally thought. The different types of fabric, number of thread count per inch, sheet styles, and, of course, personal preference, that can determine if a sheet is good or bad.

Here is a short summary all the aspect of a sheet you could consider before buying a sheet. If you want to learn more, go to our article Savvy’s Guide to Bed Sheets and Top 10 Bed Sheets of 2019.

Thread Count

Thread count is the number of horizontal and vertical threads in a square inch. In other words, the count is a measurement of the quality of the material.

There are many other factors that play into the quality of the material, such as plies. Ply is a reference to a single thread in a yarn strain. You want to be sure to get a sheet where there are only single plies used per thread. This will make the best quality of fabric for a sheet.

Good bed sheet sets have a range of 200 and 400 threads per square inch. This is because anything over 400 most likely has had their plies inflated. Likewise, 100 has too little. If you can hold a sheet up to the light and see holes through the sheets, then that sheet is no good. That is probably the quality of the 100 count sheet.

Bed Sheet Material

Sheet material all plays down to personal preference. There are no good or bad material types. Each material type can serve a purpose given you sleep style, health conditions, and climate.
There are tons of materials to choose from but here are the most common options and to expect from them.

If you would like to learn more about bed sheet material and read about our top bed sheet set recommendations from 2019, scroll on through the rest of our blog.

PillowCotton

Cotton is the most common and has several different names attached to its packaging: cotton jersey, percale, combed cotton, Egyptian cotton, pima/supima, American upland. This material is loved because of its soft texture and affordable quality.

Linens

Linen has a history that goes back 36,000 years. It’s made by the Flax plant and is well known for being soft. In fact, it gets softer with each wash. It also holds up pretty well over time. It’s antimicrobial and has the same cooling and breathing properties as cotton.

Flannel

Flannel is a cotton type. But it is so popular we gave it its own header. This is a loosely knit fabric. So, it’s soft and warm and breathable. It’s also a very affordable material.

Silk

This is a luxury material. It’s made from silkworms, which means that a single piece of silk is made of thousands of tiny strains. This is also a very high maintenance cloth. It needs special cleaning. Between the actual purchase and the sheet set itself, it’s a very costly material.

Polyester

Other names for this material is Nylon and Acrylic. It is an inexpensive and man-made fabric. Usually, it is combined with other fabrics. This is because alone this fabric is scratchy and unpleasant against the skin.

It’s very waterproof, which makes is a great addition to any child’s bedroom.

Specialty Sheets

There aren’t many sheet sets that come with special features. Those that do are well loved because they make people’s lives that much easier.

Specialty sheets such as flat sheets with pockets, sensory compression sheets, deep pockets, and personalized sheets are a wonder to have. They perform mundane tasks like making sure the sheet doesn’t become untucked from the bottom of the mattress. Or, they give those with sensory issues the comfort they need to find sleep. To learn more read our article Savvy’s Guild to Bed Sheets and Top 10 Bed Sheets of 2019.

Mattress Foundations

The term mattress foundation is actually a confusing term in the mattress industry. There are some people that consider it whatever they put their mattress on. But that’s not completely correct. So simply, a mattress foundation is a supporting structure for the mattress. This means that not all bed furniture you buy will have the support that it needs.
Essentially, a mattress foundation is a wooden frame that creates a level surface for the mattress to rest on. Many modern foundations are raised on legs and can be a height of 9 inches or as low as 5 inches.

Due to the escalating prices in bed furniture and mattress foundations, there have been many people who have been starting to build their own mattress foundation. You can get instructions for building an inexpensive mattress foundation at our article DIY: How To Build A Memory Foam Mattress Foundation.

Newer foundations have come out and for those who are willing to spend the extra dollars, they are well worth it. There are the typical designer beds that have the foundations built into them. And then there are the adjustable beds, which are very popular. These adjustable foundations have medical technology build into a foundation. This was done for the explicit purpose of providing better sleep to those who have sleeping disorders or life long medical disorders that need a bit of extra attention.

Sources:

  • https://www.sleepadvisor.org/history-of-sleep/
  • https://www.thespruce.com/the-history-of-the-bed-4062296
  • https://www.magicalminkies.com/the-history-of-blankets/
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