If you’re on the hunt for bedding that feels super crisp and cool on the skin, cotton percale is a great way to go. And though some sleepers may be under the impression that all cotton bedding feels the same, the truth is that it really depends upon how its woven! A percale weave is known for producing a light, breathable, and oh-so-crisp set of sheets that, in my opinion, is essential to any bedding collection.
That said, cotton percale bedding is among the most popular on the market, and there are a ton of options from which to choose. But don’t worry — In this guide, I’ll break down everything you need to know about shopping for cotton percale sheets, and give you a close look at my top five favorites as well!
Best Percale Sheets
- Editor’s Choice – Linen Home Cotton Percale Sheet Set
- Most Durable – Peru Pima 415 Thread Count Cotton Sheet Set
- Best for Your Budget – Pinzon 300 Thread Count Cotton Percale Sheet Set
- Best Style – Comfort Spaces Cotton Percale 4-Piece Sheet Set
- Best for Hot Sleepers – Mellanni 300 Thread Count Cotton Percale Sheet Set
Linen Home Cotton Percale Sheet Set
- These sheets are airy, soft, and super crisp to the touch. Folks looking for a classically cozy set of cotton percale sheets should definitely give these a try.
- This bedding is woven from long-staple cotton, which means it’s smoother and more durable than cotton woven from short fibers.
- Those with tall mattresses might like to know that the fitted sheet in this set has very deep 18-inch pockets!
- Keep in mind that percale woven cotton bedding like this offers a crisp feel and matte appearance. If you prefer your sheets to be silky and shiny, I suggest shopping for cotton sateen.
- If you’re looking for bedding with colorful printed patterns, I suggest you look elsewhere because this set only comes in solid colors.
These sheets are made from 100% OEKO-Tex certified cotton, and spun into a crisp percale weave. They’re light, breathable, and ideal for sleepers looking to boost their collection of cotton bedding essentials.
Peru Pima 415 Thread Count Percale Cotton Sheet Set
- The cotton used to weave this bedding is OEKO-Tex certified, which guarantees that it was made without harmful chemicals or dyes.
- Pima cotton is known for producing exceptionally soft and durable sheets, thanks to its long, supple fibers. Additionally, this set features a high thread count of 415 which makes it feel extra smooth on the skin!
- Those looking to get creative with bedroom decor might be particularly compatible with this set, as it comes in a wide variety of colors and styles.
- Pima cotton tends to come at a higher price point, and this sheet set is no exception. These sheets aren’t going to be in everyone’s budget.
- The fitted sheet in this set has deep pockets of 15 inches, but those with mattresses taller than 15 inches might find that the fitted sheet is a bit too snug.
This bedding is woven from 100% Pima cotton, which is a type of cotton that’s known for its superior durability and resistance to pilling. Not to mention, it features a high thread count of 415 which serves to boost its super soft feel.
Best for your Budget
Pinzon 300 Thread Count Cotton Percale Sheet Set
- These sheets are crisp, durable, and feature a high thread count of 300 for an extra soft feel.
- The top sheet and pillowcases in this set are designed with a 6-inch hem on the borders, which gives this bedding a hotel-like aesthetic.
- This sheet set comes in a wide range of sizes, all of which are comptitively priced. Sleepers looking for an affordable cotton percale sheet set should definitely give this one a try!
- This set only comes in five different colors, none of which feature any designs or printed patterns. Folks looking to get really creative with decor might find these options a bit limiting.
- If you’re looking for a warm and cozy sheet set, you’ll probably find that this one is too light and airy.
Woven from 100% cotton and spun into a crisp percale weave, this breathable sheet set is perfect for those looking to sleep cool. Not to mention, it’s very reasonably competitively priced, making it ideal for folks on a budget.
Comfort Spaces Cotton Percale 4-Piece Sheet Set
- My favorite thing about this sheet set is that it comes in uniquely attractive styles including diamonds, paisley, and even printed animal patterns!
- This bedding is already very reasonably priced, but it also comes with a 30-day satisfaction guarantee.
- Folks who prioritize easy maintenance will be glad to know that this sheet set is completely machine washable and dryable.
- Those in search of plain white bedding won’t find it here, as this set only comes in printed patterns.
- This bedding is not woven from long or extra-long staple cotton, which might make it more susceptible to pilling.
This sheet set is woven from 100% cotton and spun into a breathable, crisp percale weave. Additionally, it comes in a variety of fun styles and printed patterns which might be ideal for those looking to get creative with bedroom decor.
Best for Hot Sleeper
Mellanni 300 Thread Count Cotton Percale Sheet Set
- While percale woven cotton already has a reputation for being cool and crisp, I found this set to be exceptionally light and airy, perfect for hot sleepers.
- The cotton used to weave this bedding is OEKO-Tex certified, which means no harmful chemicals, dyes, or pesticides were used to make it.
- Mellanni offers a Lifetime Manufacturer’s Guarantee which really relieves the purchasing pressure. If they ever pill, fade, or simply don’t live up to your standards, you’ll be fully refunded.
- This bedding is ideal for warm climate, so if you’re shopping for the wintertime, I suggest you look elsewhere.
- Those with mattresses deeper than 16” tall may find that the fitted sheet in this set is a bit too small.
These sheets are made from 100% cotton, and feel super soft and soothing on the skin. Not to mention, this bedding is percale woven which makes it exceptionally light, airy, and cooling.
How To Shop For Percale Sheets
Now that we’ve taken a look at my top five favorite cotton percale sheet sets, allow me to dive deeper into the methodology behind my decisions. While picking the best cotton sheets is largely about personal preference, there are some helpful tips and tricks to follow in order to find the ones that are best for your unique needs.
Regardless of weave style, it’s always important to pay attention to the length of the cotton fibers used to manufacture a set of sheets. Why? Well, the length of the cotton fibers (commonly referred to as “staples”) directly affects how soft and durable the finished fabric will be! And the general rule of thumb is: the longer the fibers, the higher the quality.
For these reasons, I generally aim for either long or extra-long staple cotton (and don’t worry, this information is always given on the brand’s website and/or packaging). However, it’s important to note that the extra durability and smoothness that long-staple cotton provides does tend to up the price. So, sleepers on a budget might find that extra-long staple cotton sheet sets are a bit too expensive.
If you’re not sure where to start shopping, I suggest searching for Egypitan and Pima cotton! Both are very popular, can be found online and in stores, and are known for having luxuriously long and supple fibers.
That said, take some time to consider what you’re really looking for in a set of sheets. If it’s durability, long and extra-long staple cotton is probably your best bet. If it’s just a cozy cotton sheet set that you don’t plan to use every week, there’s nothing wrong with sleeping on regular cotton!
Now let’s talk thread count. While many sleepers might be under the impression that a high thread count is the sole indicator of sheet quality, there’s a lot more to it than that. In fact, thread count can lose its value entirely if you’re not working with high-quality materials. Remember: longer cotton fibers produce a higher quality, more durable finished fabric.
Think of it this way: Thread count refers to the amount of individual yarns per square inch of fabric, and the longer the fibers are, the less they need to be spliced together. And the less they’re spliced together, the smoother the fabric feels!
That said, it’s important to note that some bedding brands will splice a ton of short fibers together in order to boast a higher thread count. That’s why I steer clear of sheet sets that advertise a thread count of 800 or higher, as that is often indicative of short fibers (and a marketing ploy!).
When it comes to percale woven cotton, a thread count of 200-400 is a great benchmark to stick to. Of course, long-staple cotton with a thread count of 350-400 is most likely going to be a bit smoother and more durable than cotton that’s in the 200-250 range. But, regardless of thread count, remember that a percale weave always produces a crisp and breathable set of sheets.
Colors, Prints & Patterns
Now that we’ve covered the fiber factor and thread count, let’s get to the fun part — style! In my opinion, choosing the colors, prints and patterns that suit your personal style is exciting, and gives you a chance to curate your bedroom decor exactly to your liking.
Keep in mind, though, that every bedding brand brings a different aesthetic to the table. For example, some brands are all about subtle, muted tones, while others exclusively manufacture colorful, vibrant sheet sets. So before you begin your hunt for the perfect sheet set, take some time to walk around your bedroom and think about what sheet style you’re going for. After all, it is your sleep space, and you should decorate it to reflect your personal taste!
Luckily, choosing the right size sheet set is pretty straightforward in that it corresponds to the size of your mattress. For instance, if you’re sleeping on a Queen size mattress, go with a Queen size sheet set. However, things get a little trickier when it comes to the fitted sheet because you’ve got to pay close attention to the depth of its pockets.
The depth of a fitted sheet’s pockets will tell you a lot about how it’s going to look and fit on your mattress. If you sleep on a tall mattress of 15-inches or more, you’re definitely going to want to search for deep-pocket sheets. Conversely, if you sleep on a more shallow mattress of 10” or shorter, a deep-pocket fitted sheet will look baggy on your bed!
I suggest checking the “dimensions description” as listed on the brand’s website in order to make sure you’re getting the best fit. And remember: It’s always better to get a fitted sheet that’s a little too big than too small to ensure it doesn’t slip off the bed as you roll around at night.
One of the great things about cotton bedding is that it’s usually very easy to care for, and every sheet set I’ve listed in this roundup requires fairly simple maintenance. That said, I always suggest checking the exact care instructions as detailed by the bedding brand itself in order to ensure you’re caring for the fabric properly.
Additionally (and this is totally optional), I recommend letting your sheets line-dry whenever possible. Why? Well, high-heat dry cycles can increase the risk of pilling, color fading, and shrinkage. And since you spent a pretty penny on your new bedsheets, you want them to last as long as possible.
And finally, don’t forget to wash your sheets once a week in order to keep them smelling fresh and feeling clean!
Price, Trial Periods, & Returns
Every factor I’ve listed so far influences the price of any given sheet set, and at the end of the day, quality costs. The fiber length, thread count, style, and even the popularity of the bedding brand itself all contribute to the overall price of cotton bedding, but it’s important to note that price ranges quite a bit!
That said, I suggest you aim for bedding brands that offer generous trial periods, return policies, and warranties. These things inspire confidence in the consumer, and let you know that the company proudly stands behind its products. Not to mention, a trial period is a great opportunity to actually test a set of sheets and still have the option to be refunded if you find that it’s not the right fit for you.
Just keep in mind that return policies and trial periods are two different things! For instance, a 30-day return policy means you have 30 days to send your product back to the company for a full refund. However, every bedding brand’s return policy is different, and some are a bit stricter than others. In fact, many returns are not eligible for a refund if they’ve been washed or used in any way.
Conversely, a trial period gives you the chance to personally test a set of sheets for a set amount of time. After your trial period is up, you have the option to send it back for a refund, or keep it and add it to your collection of bedding!
Sleepopolis Buying Tips
We’re nearing the end of my guide, but before you start shopping, allow me to impart a few final tips and tricks to make your buying experience as efficient as possible.
- Cooling & Breathability – Keep in mind that percale woven cotton is typically light, breathable, and cool. If you’re looking for something that’ll keep you warm and cozy in the wintertime, I suggest you shop for sateen woven cotton instead.
- Crisp VS Silky – It’s also important to note that percale woven cotton offers a distinctly crisp handfeel and a matte appearance. If you prefer your sheets to be shiny and silky, aim for cotton sateen, bamboo, or Tencel-based bedding.
- Wash After Opening – This isn’t mandatory, but I like to wash my sheets as soon as I remove them from the packaging. Not only will this get rid of any dust or residue it may have picked up in transit, but it’ll also shrink the bedding a little bit and get it to its true size (don’t worry — cotton bedding should only shrink a tiny bit after the first wash).
Well, you’ve seen my favorite cotton percale sheet sets, and you’ve got all the info you need to get to shopping! Just remember to pay close attention to all the little details, take advantage of trial periods whenever possible, and have fun picking the sheets that match your individual wants and needs.