Do Silk Sheets Really Live Up To All The Hype?

Some celebrities swear by silk sheets. Take "The Real Housewives of Beverly Hills" star Kyle Richards for instance. As she explains it, "I started sleeping with a silk pillow because they say that if you sleep with a silk pillow, it prevents lines on your face. And I'm here to tell you that it's true" (via Us Weekly). Kelly Ripa is another silk sheets devotee.

But is this indulgent bedding purchase really worth the money? Because anyone who has ever shopped for silk sheets knows how pricey they can be.

We're here to say that silk sheets offer many benefits — the least of which isn't even the supposed anti-aging ability of the luxe weave. From being an environmentally-friendly option, to keeping allergies at bay, there's a reason some folks will only sleep on silk.

That said, you'll find that silk is far from perfect, especially when it comes to how labor-intensive it can be to care for your celebrity-approved sheets.

Advantages of silk sheets

As sleep education expert Christina Graham told HuffPost, "Silk sheets are thought to be ideal for promoting sleep since silk fibers are breathable and have low conductivity, which allows our bodies to regulate the core temperature in warm and cool environments." She added that silk wicks moisture away from your skin and provides a cool, comfy and sweat-free sleep.

To unpack this a bit, silk sheets possess many superpowers, to be sure. To start, silk is a natural fiber, originating from the cocoon of the silkworm (via Medical News Today). That means that for those of us who care a lot about things like sustainability, silk makes sense. Furthermore, buying bedding made of silk means your sleep environment is renewable and biodegradable (via CFDA). Put that on your bed and slumber in it!

Furthermore, as Graham notes, silk boasts breathable and cooling properties, which make us want to curl up and take a soothing snooze right now (via Everyday Health).

And we haven't even gotten to the beauty benefits.

Silk sheets provide beauty perks too

In addition to being an environmentally-conscious choice, silk bedding is just plain indulgent and ensures you'll sleep like a baby due to the cooling and moisture-wicking properties silk provides.

Beyond just sleeping in luxury, silk sheets can boost your beauty quotient, or so many people say. You'll find endless fans of silk — like Kyle Richards and Kelly Ripa — who would sing silk's praises, swearing the renewable weave prevents wrinkles and even bedhead (via Good Housekeeping).

Silk is also known to be hypoallergenic, so if you have asthma or allergies, then you may want to start saving up for silk sheets ASAP — more on the cost of this bedding splurge in a moment (via Better Homes & Gardens).

First, according to the Sleep Foundation, silk sheets are going to stand the test of time — as long as you take care of them oh-so-carefully and are willing to pony up on the price.

Disadvantages of silk sheets

Okay, so silk is hypoallergenic and cooling. It keeps your bed from turning into a sweaty puddle at night, which makes menopause sufferers especially interested in exploring the option of a silky night's sleep. But silk isn't ideal for many reasons.

Consider that while you may have heard that silk sheets offer antimicrobial properties, there's some contention around this claim. According to a 2020 article in The New York Times, no actual clinical research is yet to prove that bacteria is less likely to transfer onto your skin if you sleep in silk sheets. In fact, the outlet notes that the most effective way to keep your sheets clean is — drumroll please — to wash them, no matter what they're made of.

Most critically perhaps is that silk sheets are generally going to cost more than their cotton counterparts. And, be label-wary as you browse the bedding section. As HGTV points out, while you're shopping for silk sheets, you may see satin blend options that cost less. But adding satin to the blend means the sheets are no longer going to offer all the same benefits of silk, because satin is not a natural fiber.

Caring for your silk sheets

It's worth noting that some sleepers simply don't like the slippery factor of silk sheets. But if slipping into silk for slumbering sounds dreamy, and you can afford the price tag on a pair, then there's one final factor to consider before you buy.

The care of silk sheets is a major "con" of going this route, as the fabric can be easily damaged. As BH&G reports, most silk sheets can be washed in your machine just like regular sheets. However, you'll want to buy a silk-specific laundry detergent to prevent washing out the color of the sheets and destroying the satiny feel. The outlet further recommends using a laundry bag and washing the silk on the delicate cycle in cold water.

If this sounds like a lot of work as compared to caring for your cotton sheets, we're not done. Because ultimately, experts agree that the best way to preserve the integrity and life of your silk sheets is hand-washing. And how many of us want to hand wash our sheets? We aren't raising our hands over here. This process involves laundering the sheets in your bathtub or laundry tub, and hanging them to dry.

But, if you want to take the time and effort to do this due to the many benefits that silk sheets offer, then hey, we aren't here to dissuade you!

The takeaway

Silk sheets may leave you looking younger, with smoother hair upon waking up in the morning. They may keep you cool and dry all night long — and feeling like a Hollywood star due to the sumptuous slumber. You may even experience fewer allergy symptoms.

But imagine breaking the bank with this bedding purchase, only to find that laundering your silk sheets is a royal pain. You'd hate to wind up with ripped or pilled silk sheets that have lost their color or have stains — after shelling out all that dough.

So the takeaway is that as long as you don't mind paying up and you are up for spending more time and energy washing your bedding, silk is considered the A-list of sheets for a reason. By all account, it feels amazing and offers so many perks, perhaps line drying your bedding is a small price to pay for paying a lot for your sheets.