The conundrum behind thread count disclosed
There are thousands of stories and descriptions all over the internet, home decor magazines, newspapers and books about textiles. The truth of the matter is, everyone is trying to give you their own perspective and definition in order to promote either their own products, or someone else's. Some companies will tell you that thread count matters; others that it doesn't, that yarns (threads are more important); Blogs and articles will give you data from Consumer's reports, yet they will quote the advice of a CEO of a major bed linen company. So, who do you trust? As promised, I will be completely honest with you, and will tell you that I might be a little subjective myself and try and sway you to test out our products. However, there are basic facts and there are common misperceptions, and it is exactly what I am going to give you in this article. You can make your own conclusions after you have read it.
First of all, I would like to show you a simple diagram explicitly pointing to what a vertical (the 'weft) and a horizontal (the 'warp) thread is as it is a lot easier to visualize the following statement: the thread count is the number of threads in one square inch of fabric.
Common Misperceptions vs Facts:
- A presumption that the higher the thread count of a fabric, the better quality it is.
BUT Many of you don't know the following:
- A thread count tells you how closely a fabric is woven
- Every thread is made out of single strands twisted together = a ‘ply’
- Some fabrics manufacturers twist thread around itself to create ‘multi-ply’ – eg 2 strands twisted together = ‘2-ply’
- The maximum number of threads that can fit into a square inch of fabric, depending on the type of cotton used, is no higher than 400
- So, the ‘multi-ply’ thread counting is used to create an illusion for a higher count
- BUT, to achieve the above, a lower quality of cotton/ or thinner yarns (threads) must be used
- Meaning, the threads, and so the fabric would not last as long
- The life cycle of good quality textiles depends on the type, but when it comes to cotton and tencel, it should last for a good few years before it starts falling apart.
- One of the ways people have adopted in order to check if the quality of the bed linen is good is by feeling it, and if it is soft, smooth and silky looking, then it is more than acceptable.
BUT did you know that:
- Touching a fabric and its feel against your skin can certainly distinguish bad from good quality, as the denser the thread count the softer and gentle it should feel.
Be aware! According to consumer reports and reliable sources, many manufacturers apply specific chemicals, polishes and wax in order to make their products feel soft and look shiny. This is not only inorganic, but its effects wash off after the fabric's first laundry.
The conclusion to all of these ways of misleading the public is to trust your own instincts, practical knowledge and these tips on how you can test the quality of bed linen you are buying/have bought:
- Look for threads that might be hanging off or uneven stitches
- Pull the fabric a little with both hands to test its strength
- If possible hold up against natural light or a lamp, and you will be able to see the density of the threads. The bad quality ones will be clearly see through.
- Go for a good old fashioned touch, and if the label says 1000 thread count, yet it feels like sand paper against your skin, there is certainly something not quite right. After all, as far as we know, that many thread counts aren't even possible.
- Take the bed linen that you think fits the above criteria the most, make sure to keep your receipt, and wash your purchase with a good detergent, a nice softener with no bleach and separate from all your other clothes (ie follow the instructions on the label). If you are purchase was good quality, then it should either stay as soft as when you took it out of the package, or even better, it'll be softer!
The problem is many retailers would not allow you to apply all of the above tips, if any. Ask yourselves why?! To prove to you that our products are certainly up for the challenge and will stand the test, Roxyma Dream gives you the opportunity to return your purchase to us, if it does not feel as fantastic or better after its first wash.
Aleks RD UK x
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