Unraveling the Mystery of Thread Counts

August 18, 2019

Unraveling the Mystery of Thread Counts


So exactly what is thread count and why should you care?   After all, if it is being prominently featured on the packaging for those new sheets you just purchased then it must be something that you need to know.


Here are the facts.  The thread count is actually the number of threads woven together in a square inch.  This includes both the length and width.  So for instance 200 threads lengthwise woven with 200 threads widthwise will produce a thread count number of 400.  The premise is the higher the thread count the softer the sheet.  Since we all want to sleep on the softest sheets possible, knowing a sheets thread count would certainly help you make your choice.


Companies use thread counts all the time in their marketing campaigns but besides boosting their sales does it really help you the consumer?  Consider this first.  Different manufacturers do not measure thread counts the same.  Some measure the thread count based on the number of threads per square inch.  Others measure according to the number of fibers or piles that make up a single thread.  How does that work?  Well, if a single thread is made up of four piles wrapped together into a single thread then the thread count would be multiplied by 4 resulting in a higher thread count.   This creative math could cost you the consumer.  The same thread of a lower quality made of several piles could be listed by some manufacturers as having a thread count of 500, 750 or 1000.


The truth is to get such a high number thread count you would need to use thinner strands twisted together to fit into a square inch.  This could affect the quality because after all you can only fit a certain amount of threads on a loom.  According to tests run by Consumer Reports, spending money on sheets with a thread count higher than 400 is just not necessary.   Some of the top scoring sheets found from their independent tests had a thread count of only 280.  Percale sheets which were crisp and soft with a matte finish also tested just as well.


So when shopping for sheets, the thread count is not the only way to measure the quality of sheets.   Other factors like the weave, percale versus sateen, and of course the fabric are just as important.  Bamboo, Pima and Egyptian cotton are some of the most popular.   Proper care for your sheets ultimately will make the difference in how well your sheets hold up over time.  Avoid washing with towels to avoid piling, use a good quality detergent and follow the manufacturers instructions and you will always enjoy a good night's sleep.




The content contained in this blog post reflects the personal views and opinions of the author and was solely provided for informational purposes only. KinderSuite or any employee thereof is not responsible for any inaccuracies of statements made therein and will not be held liable for any errors or omissions or damages arising from its display or use.  Any opinions expressed by readers leaving comments are theirs alone and do not reflect the opinion and/or views of KinderSuite and it's staff.

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