Sheets are probably the most overlooked and taken for granted fabrics in your home next to towels. But if you are smart and know what you are doing, care for Egyptian Cotton Sheets can be easy, care-free and will ensure the long life of your sheets.
First, you should consider some things when purchasing with regard to care. The quality of your sheet set will determine the life of the sheets. There are things you can do to prevent the premature aging of your sheets (which we will get to in a moment), but there are factors that you might want to consider that will affect the longevity of the sheets.
What is ‘pilling’ and why do sheets do it?
Sheets pill due to several factors one is that perhaps shorter fiber cotton was used to manufacture the fabric. Egyptian Cotton Sheets are made with longer fiber (also known as staple) cotton which makes stronger, more flexible threads which make a better fabric. Think about it this way, if you were to make a rope out of pieces of string, would you want to use longer pieces of string or shorter? Wouldn’t the shorter pieces tend to ’stick out’? Now think about if that rope was washed and spun around; wouldn’t the ends that were sticking out be raveled and balled up when the washing got done? That’s the same way a sheet ‘pills’. The short ends of the fibers which ’stick out’ from the fabric, get spun around in the wash and ball up to cause little ‘pills’ on your sheets. Egyptian cotton is extra-long fiber cotton which is woven into a strong, long lasting, flexible yarn that will last through multiple washings comparatively. In addition to pilling, shorter fiber cotton sheets tend to wear out more quickly than do long fiber cotton sheets for the same reasons: shorter fiber tends to break easily.
Does thread count matter?
Thread count matters in the long term care of your sheets. Higher thread count doesn’t just mean a softer, more flexible fabric, it also means stronger and longer lasting. The term ‘thread count’ refers to the number of threads in a square inch of fabric. Think about a tug-o-war game between 100 big, bulky strong men and 1000 lean, toned men each side doing the same thing, with the same objective. Who is going to win out in the end? The higher thread count, longer fiber cotton fabrics will last longer and be more flexible to your use than anything else. This is why ‘regular’ cotton sheets tend to wear out in the middle a lot quicker than long-staple cotton sheets.
So how do I make sure my sheets will last a long time?
Care for your sheets is not rocket science, but it does take thought. First, realize that for most people, pillow cases tend to get soiled much quicker than bed sheets. For this reason alone, we suggest keeping an extra set of pillow cases for each sheet set. This will keep you from laundering your sheets too frequently and perhaps cause their premature death.
Let’s go through some steps and tips of things to look for and do when laundering your Egyptian Cotton Sheets:
- Always follow the manufacturer’s cleaning recommendations and instructions.
- Look for stains. Always look for stains BEFORE you wash. If you forget and don’t pre-treat to ensure the stain removal, you may end up ‘baking’ the stain right into the sheet when you put it into the dryer. Pre-treat any stains with mild detergent and perhaps non-chlorine oxygenated bleach if needed. Do not use any chlorinated bleach products as this will weaken the fibers and cause premature damage to the fabric.
- Use warm or cool water to prevent heat damage to the fibers in your sheets. Choosing the gentle cycle for your wash will also prevent any damage due to agitation.
- For the same heat-damage prevention, set the dryer on low heat when drying your Egyptian cotton sheets. This will preserve the integrity of the fabric as well as prevent wrinkles.
- If you don’t want to iron your sheets, take them out of the dryer just before they are completely dry. Folding them when they are this way will prevent wrinkles and ensure the fibers of your sheets will not weaken due to over drying.
Remembering these few simple things will keep your Sheet Set in like-new condition for years to come; an investment worth taking care of.