A Look Behind the Seams

What’s the Best Cotton for Bed Sheets?

What’s the Best Cotton for Bed Sheets?

Updated October 2022

You're probably confused about what matters most when buying bedding. All the experts contradict each other and it's hard to get a straight answer from anyone. We encountered the same issue when we decided to launch our own bedding brand, Authenticity50, so we went straight to the source and spoke with the MANUFACTURERS about what really works. These include the manufacturers of high end hotel bedding and towels as well as farmers, yarn spinners, weavers and finishers.

touring cotton farms in america

Touring an American cotton farm

First things first, everyone agrees that cotton is the best material for great sleeping sheets. It's the best blend of cool hand, dry feel, durability and washability. 

But not all cottons are created equally, and some of them are downright BAD. So how do you tell the difference, and which ones should you be scouring the internet for?

Here are the top three choices in cotton sheets:

Supima Cotton

Supima cotton is grown in the US in California and Arizona.  Because it’s grown right here in the US, there are strict standards for it to make sure it’s worthy of one of the best cotton labels in the biz.

Supima cotton is top shelf, the best cotton you can buy:

  • Less than  3% of the cotton grown in the USA can be called Supima®
  • Supima® cotton has  45% stronger fibers than other cotton fibers
  • Supima® costs more than 2x the price of regular cotton (because it’s the BEST)

The combination of the perfect percale weave and thread count makes these sheets not only durable, but smooth, soft, and easy to fall asleep on. 

Shop Cotton Sheets

American-grown Cotton

If you source your cotton from high quality American growers you can find some of the best cotton in the world. It's mostly naturally irrigated by rain fall and, unlike some cottons grown overseas, always picked by machine rather than hand. In addition you're supporting local business and communities as well as better working conditions than overseas cotton. 

At Authenticity50 we know our yarn spinners and can make sure we're getting the highest quality cotton from their farmer's crops. This assures us a great quality at a fair price. While we used Supima for many years, and still do, the price increase of 3x over the space of two years made it incredibly expensive relative to the quality so many brands are adjusting. 

helicopter cotton tour

Touring a cotton field by helicopter

view of cotton tractor from helicopter

View of the cotton harvester from helicopter 


 

Pima Cotton

We like Pima cotton because it’s typically grown in the US, and is of a good quality. It’s smooth, cool, and makes for some REALLY luxe sheets — if you’re getting the real thing.

Again, the issue we run into with  Pima cotton is similar to the problems with Egyptian cotton: you really never know if you’re getting the real deal, or an overpriced knockoff.

If you’re getting Pima cotton sheets that are from a reputable source grown here in the US, you can bet that the quality will be pretty good. But there’s no way to verify it, and ultimately,  you’re only going to know when you actually start sleeping on those sheets.

The Best Cotton Sheets EVER

We love, make, and sell American-grown cotton sheets because we like to sleep well, too. Cotton is the best fabric to go with, and American-grown cotton is at the top of the cotton category for sheets and the best value for your money.

It’s smooth, it’s silky, it’s insanely soft and breathable, and it’s the only type of cotton that has a quality verification process, so you KNOW you’re actually getting what you’re paying for.

But don’t take our word for it — we have a 100-night sleep trial.

Shop Authenticity 50 Sheets

Supima Cotton

Pros:

Verified authentic by the Supima® Association

Makes insanely soft and cool sheets

Grown ONLY in  America

Consistent quality

The softest and most durable cotton available

Cons:

More expensive than Egyptian cotton


American-grown Cotton

Pros:

Very soft and durable

Smoother than cheaper cottons

Good quality and fair pricing

Cons:

To get the best you need relationships with manufacturers

Quality varies from batch to batch so relationships are important

High demand can increase prices

Can be more expensive than imported cotton


Pima Cotton

Pros:

Very soft and durable

Smoother than cheaper sheets

Generally good quality and often grown in USA

Cons:

May be grown abroad

Not monitored by 3rd party organizations

Not as smooth as Supima cotton

May be blended with cheaper cotton


 

PS: What about Egyptian Cotton? 

Egyptian cotton used to be the standard for excellence in the cotton industry,  but recent reports show that most Egyptian cotton is  fake.

According to an article in the  Wall Street Journal, "The Cotton Egypt Association, which licenses the trademark and certifies suppliers, estimates that 90% of products labeled “Egyptian cotton” are fakes but such public rebukes for mislabeling are rare."

So the real deal? Authentic Egyptian cotton is nice, with quality that rivals Supima cotton — but  there’s no way to verify if you’re getting the real thing, or an expensive knockoff.

Our advice? Steer clear of Egyptian cotton until the industry finds a way to verify it.

 

 

Made in USA Bed sheets

 

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The finest sheets start with the world's best cotton

18 comments

Jackie

I am a textile lover. I don’t understand your response to Drew. Are you saying that YOUR process of sending your Supima overseas for manufacturing is bad for environment and economy? Or do you grow and manufacture in US?

Nelson Thibodeau-Kilkeary

05 02 2023: I like Quality products made in the USA with quality workmanship and no Mickey Mouse warranty. I want Quality service from the Manufacturers not what you get today junk and scrappy service. I go out of my way to get a quality product at a reasonable price. I am not a rich person I just watch and look at what I buy. If I get a chance to say something good about a product that is made in the USA and worth while I will say it. Thank You and continue to create quality products made from the land of the USA and its people. Nelson.

Sheila

I have 100%Ima cotton sheets. They wrinkle very badly
I dont like to iron
When I do just do along the top edge but the wrinkles never go away even with steam.

Daniel Richards

Doesn’t the Cotton Egypt Association now verify that the procuts with there stamp on are verified Egyptian cotton now? Seems a new recent verification company that make sure all cotton is 100% Egyptian

Joan Marie Gebhardt

Why do my new Supima 100% cotton sheets feel stiff and like plastic when they are wet?

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