A guide on how to buy the right bed linen/duvet
When buying a new duvet you generally have two major choices: those made of natural materials such as silk, down or feathers; or synthetic duvets, such as those made of hollow fibre. Natural fillings are considered the best in terms of quality because these materials ‘breathe’, helping you to stay cool on warm summer nights. If you prefer synthetic duvets, try to choose one with a cotton cover.
- Feathers and down: These fillings isolate heat well in winter and are cooler than polyester in summer. These duvets are also light and therefore conducive to a comfortable night’s sleep. If you are allergic to feathers and down, however, this doesn’t necessarily mean that polyester is the only alternative. Good suppliers treat the down and feathers with hypoallergenic substances approved by the SABS. (Look out for this information on the duvet’s packaging.)
- Silk: These duvets are light and cool, making them perfect for hot summer nights. They are a good alternative for people who are sensitive to down but who also want to sleep under something natural.
- Keep it clean: Products made with silk, feathers and down should usually be dry-cleaned. They should also regularly be shaken out and beaten. Leave your duvet outside so that it can air properly and bake in the sun, as this will freshen the filling. Hex Valley Down Products offers a washing service for cushions and duvets, with the option to obtain a new cover or have more filling added.
Synthetic fillings are cheaper and ideal for people who suffer from allergies. Hollow- fibre fillings trap air hence their puffy appearance. Those made from polyester are flatter. Synthetic materials don’t isolate as well as natural fillings do.
- Keep it clean: Read the label – some types can be washed by hand or in the washing machine.