Comforter vs Blanket — What’s the Difference?

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A close-up view of the Sleep Number comforter

A bed is supposed to be a comfortable and sacred place where you can wake up feeling well-rested. One of the keys to that is having the right bedding and the right amount of layers to ensure you have a comfortable body temperature while sleeping. If you’re deciding on a comforter vs blanket, this guide will highlight the differences between the two. By the end, you’ll be able to decide which bedding option is right for you. 

How Many Layers Do You Need?

The temperature of your bedroom, the time of year, and your individual preferences can help determine how many layers you need while sleeping. Too many layers can leave you feeling too hot, while not enough layers can have you waking up cold. The thickness of a blanket or comforter can also help determine how many are needed. I’ll explain the differences between comforters and blankets in greater detail below. 

casper weighted blanket
The Casper weighted blanket.

Comforter vs Blanket

When shopping for bedding, you’ll find a wide range of options for blankets and comforters. What you decide to buy will depend on your unique situation and what will make for the best sleep. Comforters tend to be fluffier and can feel either heavy or lightweight depending on the materials. While blankets can be thin, they can also have a heavier weight to them.

Frequently Waking up Hot

If you wake up feeling hot in the middle of the night, it can be really difficult to go back to sleep. To avoid overheating, you’ll typically want to have thinner layers of bedding. When summer’s approaching, swapping out bedding that’s too warm for cooler bedding can be essential. 

Fortunately, if you’re someone who prefers a comforter over blankets, there are some options that will keep you cool. The Buffy comforter has a cool and soothing fabric that can be good for hot sleepers. 

SO AmazonReviewPhotos Comforters Buffy
The Buffy comforter is a nice option for hot sleepers.

Blankets tend to be thinner overall, so using a thin blanket or one with breathable materials, like cotton or bamboo, is a good way to prevent you from waking up sweating. Check out our roundup of the best cooling blankets to combat any night sweats and make sure you’re using cooling sheets as well if you sleep extra hot.

Frequently Waking up Cold

There’s nothing worse than waking up shivering. If you’re too cold, it can be difficult to fall back asleep. This problem can be solved by using multiple blankets or getting a thicker comforter. Since comforters are thicker in nature, they’ll typically keep you warmer than a single blanket. If you’re going to use blankets, it’s important to keep in mind that some blankets are warmer than others. Blankets made with materials like wool or fleece tend to sleep toastier than ones made with cotton. You can also check out some of our other favorite sleep products to help you stay warm throughout the night.

Key Differences Between Comforter and Blanket

Comforters and blankets differ in their thickness and with what’s inside of them. 

Fabrics vs Fill

Comforters are designed to offer insulation. A comforter is made up of two layers of fabric, which can be materials like cotton, wool, or silk, and it has a filling between those layers. Blankets, on the other hand, are single layered. The thickness of a blanket varies. The materials that make up a blanket can also greatly vary, from cotton to microfiber to cashmere. 


A person who is usually cold while they sleep may want to opt for a comforter because of its insulation. The filling inside a comforter typically consists of down feathers or synthetic fibers. That filling is designed to keep you nice and toasty throughout the night. If you enjoy having a fluffy piece of bedding on you while you sleep, a comforter is a great option. While they’re great for staying warm, many can be used all year — like the Saatva All-Year Down Alternative comforter.

The Saatva All-Year Down Alternative comforter.

Blankets are only one layer, but certain materials can make them warmer than others. Synthetic materials, like polyester or microfiber, give a blanket warm properties that are great for cold sleepers. Another option for staying warm with blankets is to layer up with multiple blankets. If it gets too hot, it’s easy to remove one of the blankets. Electric blankets are also great for adding warmth for a cold sleeper. Weighted blankets have become a popular option as well. These blankets are rated differently based on their ability to work well for different sleep situations. Learn more in our weighted blanket heaviness guide.

Knitted weighted blankets, like the Brooklyn Bedding Chunky Knit, can help promote airflow.


Storage is another thing to consider when choosing between comforters and blankets. Different seasons may mean putting some of these bedding items away for a short time, especially in warmer months. Vacuum sealed bags are a great way to store a bulky comforter. 

Since blankets are single layer and are usually less bulky, they’re easier to store. Blankets can be stored away in an ottoman, folded away in a cabinet, or hung on a blanket ladder. 


Keeping blankets and comforters clean and in good condition is essential to ensure they last a while. Certain comforters may need to be washed in a larger machine at a laundromat if they’re too big for the one you have at home. Before washing a comforter, always look at the tag to see what the guidelines are for cleaning. Cleaning guidelines can differ depending on the types of materials the comforter is made of. It’s also important to keep in mind a comforter might have outer covers that need to be dry cleaned. 

Before washing a blanket, it’s important to look at the instructions on the tag, and to make sure the right water temperature and wash cycle is used. Any stains on a blanket should be treated before it enters the washing machine. Blankets should only be placed in the dryer if the cleaning instructions indicate it’s safe to do so. 

A knitted blanket may have stricter cleaning guidelines than a standard cotton blanket.

Resistance to Dust Mites and Allergens

Blankets can be better at preventing build up of dust, dust mites, and allergens since they don’t have that insulation that can welcome and trap them. So blankets could especially be good for those with allergies. But following the right washing instructions can prevent this for comforters too. 

If your skin is sensitive, choosing the right mattress pad is important as well. The Puffy mattress pad is one of our favorite hypoallergenic mattress pads. Sheets and pillow cases should also be washed once a week to keep dust and allergens out of bedding. 


The price of comforters and blankets will vary depending on what they’re made of as well as the brand. They can be anywhere from around $20 to hundreds of dollars. Comforters are usually more expensive than blankets because of the filling and use of more materials. Since blankets typically cost less, you may be able to buy a few blankets at the same price as one comforter.

Alternatives to Comforters and Blankets

Comforters and blankets are not the only option for your bedding. Duvet covers are a great option for changing up the look of your bedding depending on the season. Quilts can be a great choice for achieving thickness between a comforter and a blanket. 


Duvets can make fantastic alternatives to comforters. Duvets are similar to comforters in that they can be fluffy and have a down or synthetic fill. However, one key difference between a comforter and a duvet is the duvet cover. You can change the look of your bedding by changing the cover that goes over the duvet, unlike a comforter.

Another great thing about duvets is how easy they are to wash. When it’s time for cleaning all you usually have to do is take the duvet cover off and put it in the washing machine. This is much easier than having to wash a bulky comforter. 

However, one downside of the duvet is the challenge of getting the cover back on. It can be difficult to spread the duvet out evenly inside the cover when putting it back in. The process can require a lot of shaking and adjusting to make sure the duvet is evenly distributed.


Another bedding option to use is a quilt. Quilts typically have three thin layers and are stuffed with batting on the inside. Even though they have material inside, it is much less than what’s in a comforter. This makes a quilt a great option for someone who is a hot sleeper.

PatchworkQuilt cozyline
Quilts can come in a wide range of patterns and colors.

However, if you are a cold sleeper, a quilt is a great layer to add on top of a blanket or a comforter. Also, quilts are beneficial for someone who doesn’t like their bed to look fluffy since they lay flat.

It’s important to look at the cleaning label on a quilt before washing it. Some quilts need to go to a dry cleaner because of the delicate materials they are made of.


What is better: comforter or blanket?

The answer to this will vary depending on whether you are a hot or cold sleeper. If you like fluffy bedding, a comforter may be the better option for you. If you like to layer up, then multiple blankets might be the option for you.

What is a comforter blanket?

A comforter blanket is less fluffy than a down comforter but still has a thin layer of filling on the inside. While it is not as fluffy as a down comforter, it is still thicker than a blanket.

Are you supposed to use a comforter as a blanket?

A comforter can be utilized as the main blanket on your bed if you choose to do so. However, we recommend always having a top sheet underneath the comforter as well.

Is a comforter better than a quilt?

The answer to this will also vary depending on your sleep preferences. If you enjoy bedding that is thicker than a blanket but not as fluffy as a comforter, a quilt is a great option. However, if you need the fluffy filling you’ll want to go with a comforter.

What’s the difference between a comforter and a blanket and a bedspread?

A comforter contains multiple layers with a fluffy filling on the inside designed to keep you warm while you sleep. A blanket is a single layer that can vary in thickness. A bedspread is designed to cover the entire bed, including pillows. It can be used as a decorative element.


When it comes to having the right bedding everyone is unique. There are several factors to consider when deciding if you should choose a comforter vs blankets for your bedding. It’s important to consider whether you are a hot or cold sleeper and how many layers you like to have on you while you’re fast asleep. Bedding that allows you to have a comfortable temperature as you sleep is key for feeling well rested. Check out some of our favorite comforter and duvets for some great options.

Rachael Schuit

Rachael Schuit

Rachael Schuit lives in Grand Rapids, Michigan. In addition to writing for Sleepopolis, she is also a journalist with Verified News Network. Rachael loves watching movies, trying new restaurants, spending time with friends and family, and traveling. Some of her favorite places she’s visited include Colorado, Charleston, South Carolina, and Europe!