One of life’s greatest pleasures is sleeping in a cozy bed, resting atop a plush mattress and enveloped in layers of pillows and irresistibly soft sheets. Comfortable, practical, and beyond gorgeous, linen bedding will transform your bedroom into a blissful retreat—and help you get a restful night of beauty sleep. Sleeping on 100% linen is an experience that no one person can fully convey to another. It’s one of those things you simply must try for yourself in order to get the full, luxurious, now-I-understand-the-meaning-of-life experience.
People tend to shy away from purchasing linen bedding for two main reasons: price and wrinkles. Regarding price, gosh, where to start? Linen comes from the flax plant, and cultivation of these crops is extremely expensive; it’s more difficult to spin, and there are many labor-intensive stages to the production process. It’s an investment, plain and simple. Regarding wrinkles, yes, it’s a fact. But that’s part of its charming personality. A quick fold out of the dryer and into the linen closet (or right back on the bed!) and they’re good to go. If you do iron them, rest assured they iron easily, and in fact their lustrous shine returns even more beautifully.
As the temperatures start to climb, you’ll need creative ways to stay cool in your own home. Air conditioning aside, a great way to stay comfortable and keep your body temperature chilled out is to invest in linen bedding. Opting for linen breathable sheets, comforters and pillowcases means you’ll be able to sleep more comfortably and avoid all that tossing and turning because you’re overheated.
My partner and I both “sleep hot,” meaning we get easily overheated at night — but once I introduced linen sheets into the mix, we both felt their cooling benefits instantly. Neither of us woke up sweaty or uncomfortable. It’s fit for all seasons. Experts tout linen’s “high air permeability.” The fabric keeps you comfortably cool in summer and wonderfully warm in winter (perfect if you and your partner sleep at different body temperatures). It’s also highly absorbent and sweat-wicking—good news if you tend to perspire at night.
Linen is low-maintenance. Contrary to popular belief, linen is quite easy to care for: Simply machine-wash and tumble-dry. Strong detergents tend to weaken the fibers, so stick with something on the mild side to keep your linens looking fresh. Avoid bleach altogether and spot-treat stains with dish soap, water, and a gentle cloth.
It’s made to last. Yes, linen sheets are often pricier than their cotton counterparts, but it’s well worth making the investment. Linen is twice as durable as cotton, meaning it can last for decades if properly cared for—which is especially good news considering it becomes softer with age and every wash.
Linen bedding has so many positive characteristics. I thought I would just share the highlights.
• Because of its unique filtering, bacteria resistant, ventilating, moisture absorbing and evaporating capabilities, linen bed sheets are known as anti-allergic, recommended for people with skin diseases, also for children.
• Linen fabric has a light massaging effect because of the microscopic breaks throughout the fabric.
• Linen has high air permeability and heat conductivity properties – that means, it is a breathable fabric – makes you warm in the winter and keeps cool in the summer.
• Linen can absorb as much as 20% of its weight in moisture before feeling wet… thus, always having a pleasant, fresh, cool feeling when touched or slept on.
• Linen sheets have a distinct, distinguished texture and delightful softness to them… in fact, becoming even softer and shinier with each washing.
• Linen is anti-static and can even help soften and preserve the skin due to its natural pH balance.
• A linen sheet actually repels dirt.
• Linen is resistant to bacteria, fungus, dust mites, and is naturally insect repellent.
• Linen bedding is twice as durable as cotton bedding and can last the decades (an investment).
• It’s perfect for layering. Thanks to its airy, almost cloudlike appearance, linen lends itself well to lots of layering.
• It is environmentally friendly – all the flax used to make linen is used in other ways – the seeds are pressed to make linseed oil which is used in floor coverings, such as linoleum, and paint. Linen is also fully biodegradable.
• To own bed sheets of pure linen is certainly a status symbol… a choice and reflection of a more prestigious lifestyle (and always has been).
The ultimate in easygoing chic, linen has as much of a place at a beachside picnic as it does in the bedroom. You might think it’s just for summer, but the light, breathable fabric has become increasingly popular year-round for sheets, duvets, and shams (not to mention curtain panels, headboards, and bed skirts—but that’s another story). The best news of all is that with this ascent into the mainstream has come a far more appealing range of price points. If you are looking to add linen bedding your home, I suggest these companies: Brooklinen, Parachute, Olive Wren, Cultiver, Libeco, Matouk and Macy’s Hotel Collection.
Linen bedding has a universal appeal, whether you want to refine the look of your bedroom or just sleep on sheets that get softer every time you wash them. I encourage you to dive in and wrap yourself in one of the finest night sleeps you may ever encounter.
As published in the spring 2019 issue of John Eric Home magazine.