Is a Satin or Silk Pillowcase Better?
In search of the perfect pillowcase for your bedtime comfort, you may think of these top two bedding fabrics in the market. Silk and satin. It makes sense since these two fabrics are often mistaken for each other. Although, it’s noteworthy to know that satin is not at all a fabric but a type of weave. Yes, you read it right! Yet for the sake of argument, we’d love to answer this question:
Is a satin or silk pillowcase better? Silk is made with natural fibers with hypoallergenic, temperature-regulating, and breathable properties that provide wonderful life-long benefits for the health of our skin and hair. Silk pillowcases can also help prevent skin irritations, alleviate sleeping discomforts, and improve your bedtime routine. All in all, silk is a top choice for pillowcase fabrics.
This blog post teaches what separates silk and satin, their best benefits, and their biggest drawbacks. Join us as we explore six essential factors when weighing silk pillowcases against satin pillowcases. Keep reading to know which fabric will make your life better. 🥰
Pet dander, fur, dust, and chemicals are just a few of the common allergens found in bed. With the presence of these allergens between your sheets, or worse, on your pillowcase, it can be tough to catch some Zs. How can a silk or satin pillowcase help? Let’s find out.
Unfortunately, satin has no hypoallergenic properties. As much as they look shiny and luscious from afar, they can be most enjoyed by people with no sensitive skin and who can use any type of pillowcase material with no problems. Aside from their non-hypoallergenic characteristic, satin pillowcases are not as breathable as many consumers think. They could even worsen allergies over time. So if you’ve been pondering on shopping for a satin pillowcase, it might be a better idea to #SwitchToSilk!
Allergy sufferers, behold your bedtime savior. Silk is naturally hypoallergenic, which makes it a popular choice among people with allergies, asthma, and sensitive skin. Even before harvesting, the silkworms are kept in a protected living environment where they are fed organically. This conducive environment helps them create high-quality and natural protein structures and substances that emit all the good stuff. Spruce up your pillow with a silk pillowcase and you can instantly say bye-bye to dust mites, mold, bed bugs, and all the other nasty stuff.
According to this Sleep Statistics published by Single Care, “1 in 3 U.S. adults regularly don’t get enough sleep (CDC, 2016).” According to the same article, sleep disorders and discomforts can be caused by any or all of the following factors: genetic risk factors, anatomy, medical conditions or medications, and extrinsic factors such as lifestyle, diet, and sleeping environment.
Satin is non-breathable and has no moisture-wicking properties. Instead, it traps sweat and moisture from the inside (and blocks it off from the outside), making it much more uncomfortable during warmer seasons. If you’re a sweaty sleeper, expect to wake up drenched and sticky - not exactly a great way to start the day. 😰💦
Compared with other fabrics, silk is the most viable choice when it comes to “breathability.” Silk in itself is composed of breathable, non-irritating fibers that are gentle on the skin. When turned into pillowcases, they help release sweat and humidity so you’re kept cool and cozy throughout the night.
The sericin protein in silk effectively keeps off bacteria, microbes, and fungi.
Here’s a fun fact: as the Bombyx mori silkworm spins silk, it creates copper in the process - the same property that resists UV and oxidation. Just one more amazing reason to choose silk pillowcases and sleep beautifully at night! As it is, you’re kept comfortable every time and the room temperature is properly regulated in any weather conditions. At Celestial Silk, we produce pillowcases in charmeuse weave, so you can expect dense weaving but also a breathable fabric.
When it comes to silk (or satin) pillowcases, we’ve all heard the claim that they’re “good for the hair,” but what exactly is the science behind it?
Satin is slightly similar to silk at first glance but it has a noticeable difference up close. Satin has both glossy and shiny sides, while silk is lustrous all the way. It can retain its shape and doesn’t wrinkle or frizz the hair, unlike other fabrics. However, It’s not as breathable as silk.
Medical articles show similar benefits to silk when using satin pillowcases, particularly for those with coarse, dry, or brittle hair. Satin pillowcases can also be good for frizz protection, tangle-free mornings, and less chance of hair breakage. It can also help preserve your favorite hairstyle by maintaining the form, texture, volume, and flow of your hair.
However, one of its disadvantages is the lack of breathability in the fabrics. This may be uncomfortable for most people who live in humid or hot countries, or once the summer season rolls in. This could also be problematic for women undergoing their menopausal stage, which presents chills, night sweats, sleep problems, and hot flashes. As so, a satin pillowcase may not be the best choice. Better safe (and temperature-cool) than sorry!
Along with more than ten amino acids, silk is made with two proteins called fibroin and sericin. These two important proteins are naturally found in silkworms. According to Oxford Dictionary:
🌙 FIBROIN is a protein that is the chief constituent of silk and spider webs. Meaning, that this makes up the majority of the silk we touch and see.
🌙 SERICIN is a gelatinous protein that cements the two fibroin filaments in a silk fiber. So once the thread of silk has been degummed and stripped off with the sericin protein, only the silky part is left behind. This is then produced into pillowcases, sheets, dresses, and other silk items.
This same soft buttery texture is what makes silk so… silky. After all, it’s the major reason why we love silk! Silk pillowcases help the hair reclaim its excellent health or help you bounce back into a healthy hair routine without the use of artificial products or items. You will wake up to less frizz, no bedhead, and reduced tangles.
Silk has a low absorbency rate, which means it will keep all-natural oils on your hair, likewise with hair treatments and oils. Silk pillowcases can help you maintain the volume of your curls, as well as their shine. In fact, you don’t have to have curly or wavy hair to enjoy silk pillowcases since it benefits all types of hair. In essence, silk pillowcases promote the production of sebum, a natural oil produced by the body to keep the hair and scalp protected and hydrated.
Skin is a major organ of the human body. It needs care both internally and externally. When we step outside, even when we stay indoors, for the most part, our bodies and faces accumulate dirt from our surroundings.
So when we settle for the night and cleanse our skin from the day’s stresses, the last thing we want is to sleep on a pillowcase that invites more dirt, germs, and bacteria. This makes the question, “Is a satin or silk pillowcase better?” even more important. But before we dive into the comparison between these two fabrics, let’s first discuss some major skin concerns for many people.
- Fine lines and wrinkles - According to Medical News Today, wrinkles occur when UV light breaks down the collagen and elastin fibers in the skin. Furthermore, this causes the skin to become weaker and less flexible. As the skin starts to droop, wrinkles appear.
- Dehydrated skin - Beauty gurus would tell you that if you have oily skin, you should use mattifying products. But what they fail to discuss is the difference between dry and dehydrated skin. When the skin is dehydrated (lacking water), it overcompensates by producing even more sebum, thus making the skin appear oilier than it should be. In cases like this, a non-absorbent pillowcase is a must.
- Skin conditions - Individuals with sensitive skin conditions require special pillowcases. For instance, eczema (atopic dermatitis) is experienced by approximately 31 million (10%) people in the US. Sleep could be made more comfortable by using silk pillowcases.
- “Morning winkles” - While it’s not detrimental to health, no one likes morning wrinkles or sleep lines etched on their faces. Unless you have plenty of time to glam up, no one needs an extensive morning skincare routine in their life.
Satin pillowcases are known to be wrinkle-free, which helps with maintaining a healthy skin condition. This could also help prevent sleep lines on the face. However, it does not allow the skin to breathe due to its dense weave. It can also have a slightly rough or coarse texture on the face especially when it already has snags on the fabric.
Wrinkles are not detrimental to health, but if you want to maintain a wrinkle-free face for as long as possible, silk is the perfect choice of pillowcase fabric for you. Silk pillowcases have gentle, breathable, and non-irritating fibers. They effectively lock in the fabric’s silkiness and allow your face to absorb all the moisture while preventing irritants, allergens, and bacteria from touching your skin. This is especially beneficial for people with sensitive skin. Silk naturally keeps skin infections at bay by keeping your pillow hygienic at all times.
Atmosphere makes (or breaks) our quality of sleep. When your room feels, looks, and smells like paradise, it’s effortless to fall asleep, dream good dreams, and wake up refreshed. You feel like you can conquer anything in the world. The opposite is true when your bedroom looks like a storage room more than a space for rest.
So when it comes to bedroom comfort, is a satin or silk pillowcase better?
In all its shiny glory, satin pillowcases miss out on the temperature-regulating properties that can help improve sleep comfort. To be fair, polyester satin is cool when it’s cold. But when it’s hot, it’s scorching. Given its non-breathable fabric and dense weaving, all the moisture only gets trapped inside. So when you have a naturally warm bedroom, sadly, a satin pillowcase won’t do you any more favors.
Silk is an excellent thermal regulator. That kind of goes without saying, seeing that silk is a popular choice of fabric among innerwear, lingerie, and coverings like shawls. Aside from letting your skin breathe, it regulates your body temperature. Now imagine laying your head on this buttery goodness. A soothing slumber awaits you!
Changing your pillowcase into silk will not transform your room (or your life), but it can definitely help you get better sleep at night. Besides, you can’t control the weather, but you can choose where you sleep. Suffice to say, silk is great for all climates. As winter arrives, the cold won’t bother you. And when summer rolls in, gone are the days of waking up in your own puddle of sweat.
Cost or Affordability
Yet the most controversial factor. To sum it up, you get what you pay for. For more context, let’s review the details.
Since time immemorial, it’s been a common misconception that silk products of any kind are expensive by default. That there’s no wiggle room for negotiations and if you’re planning to buy any sort of silk, be it an article of clothing or a sheet, then you better have some serious cash on hand. So instead of “splurging” on it, consumers would rather look into satin for a cheaper alternative.
But the question is, does this choice make more sense? Also, does it really matter if you’re buying one or the other?
With these in mind, let’s look at the comparison between silk and satin when it comes to their price point. Hopefully, this is just one of the many ways you can determine whether a satin or silk pillowcase is better.
When it comes to satin (in case you missed it, the term you’re really looking for is *insert preferred fabric* with a satin weave), you need the textile fabric and a manufacturing lab, among other things. Given that the raw materials for satin pillowcases are cheaper than that of silk pillowcases, then this somehow follows that a satin pillowcase’s price point would be fairly low, too. Okay, quite understandable. But hold that thought.
Producing silk pillowcases requires more work than you’d think. To be specific, you’ll need approximately 5,000 silkworms to collect one kilo of silk. That’s prolific! But what does it mean, exactly? Okay, so you’re looking at the cost of farming, harvesting, labor, and production, just to name a few departments. Silk production is an intensive process during the harvesting procedure, and more so when you’re consistently producing, packaging, marketing, and shipping. All of the things!
📊 Now let’s look at the numbers. The average price of a satin pillowcase is $10 a piece, while a silk pillowcase has an average selling price of $100 apiece. Yep, WOAH. There’s a noticeably huge gap in their price points right there. Aside from that, you also have to consider that product prices depend on every company or business. Unfortunately, some, if not most, hike up the price for “better sales”.
A quick side note: we’d rather think differently. 🤭 At Celestial Silk, we implement fair pricing across our products. Our average selling price per pillowcase? A fair $40, which is approximately 60% (or higher) cheaper than other silk pillowcases. Same premium quality, priced affordably! ✨
Satin and silk pillowcases both have advantages and drawbacks of their own. Satin is great for low-priced pretty pillowcases, while silk is pricier but also offers more health benefits in the long run. Silk price is the cost of sleeping better at night, feeling more productive during the day, and enjoying better hair and skin health. As so, if it adds value to your life, it’s not an expense, it’s an investment. 😉
A silk pillowcase is not a magical item that will transform your hair, skin, or life overnight. But they have the right characteristics and properties that lead to wonderful benefits for your hair health, skin health, and general well-being. So when the question pops up again, “Is a satin or silk pillowcase better?” You know the answer, silk it is!