The Best Linen Sheets in 2019

The Best Linen Sheets in 2019

The conventional wisdom around summer fabrics is simple—if you don’t want to sweat through your pants, make sure they’re made of linen. The same is oft said of bedding. Every buzzy manufacturer of sheets, the kind that you see in subway ads and hear on podcast mid-rolls, start pushing them as soon as the temperature starts to climb. To find the best of the bunch, we asked GQ staffers to swap out their sheets for some linen (or, in one case, a hybrid-fabric), hold off on cranking up the AC, and see what happened. Most were acceptable, but a few were truly great. The main downside to linen sheets: They’re not cheap. Close to $300 is a lot for a pair of single-season sheets. But if you’re a hot sleeper—or sleep next to one every night—it’s tough to put a price on breezy, breathable comfort.

The Staff Favorite

When I was young my mom would let my brother and I get into her bed while she was changing the sheets. She’d parachute the fresh top sheet over us, letting it fall delicately down, and then do it all over again, all while we laughed like maniacs. Did your mom do this? I play this game now with my own kids. I’m pretty sure it’s universal because—think about it—the feeling of a fresh top sheet falling on your skin is truly a beautiful and thrilling sensation. Sleeping in the Kassatex Linen Bamboo Sheet Set feels a bit like that. The sheets are weightless and airy and seem to perfectly float over you, even after a dozen flips and exposed leg swaps (shoutout to my fellow one-leg-out sleepers). The best way to describe them is to say they are bouncy and incredibly smooth, unlike my scratchy linen duvet cover from a store we’ll just call BIBEA. I will say, because of their lack of scratchy stiffness these sheets wrinkle like crazy. But the wrinkles don’t look dirty messy, more like beautiful-life messy. Honestly, the only negative here is that now I clearly need to replace my BIBEA duvet. —Megan Gustashaw, project and content manager

A Breezy Option for Summer

Snowe Linen Sheet Set

Snowe Linen Sheet Set

Snowe

$288

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I’ve slept on a fair amount of linen, and the Snowe linen sheets are the airiest I’ve experienced. They’re perfect for those in-between June temps (warm enough for open windows but not quite time for the AC) that I usually cope with by slinging both legs out from under the covers. Since putting them on my bed I’m only exposing only one leg to the air, which is to say, these linens do their job. They’ll keep you cool and cozy at the same time. They are light and airy, but not too thin or gauzy. (For reference, Lebron would have felt, but only slightly, that Lance Stephenson air blow through a single ply of these sheets.) I wouldn’t sleep with them all year round, but their delicate weave makes them perfect for the summer months. One nitpicky downside: If you have a shorter mattress in terms of thickness, you might want to try another set (Snowe’s come with “generous sizing” to accommodate any depth). That flexibility is nice to have, and probably makes sense for most people, but a slightly loose bottom fitted sheet is a particular pet peeve of mine. For others the flowy-ness probably adds to the sumptuous comfort. —Martin Mulkeen, Commerce Editor

A Breathable Non-Linen Alternative

When I sleep, my body decides to sweat as if I’m dreaming of doing hot yoga (I’m usually not dreaming of doing hot yoga). I respond in the least environmentally-friendly way possible: blasting my window’s A/C unit. This presents quite the conundrum: I need sheets that won’t make me too hot most of the year, but that will, ironically, be warm enough in those summer months when the A/C is going full-tilt. This has been the best part about the Helix Tencel sheets. They are softer than the set I was running with before—like sleeping in between two Bernese Mountain Dogs, without any of the heavy panting (that remains true even after a wash)—but, more importantly, I haven’t woken up sweating or shivering in weeks. You know how the other side of your pillow always feels cool and soft? That’s how these sheets feel all of the time. I’ll be leaving these bad boys on year round. —Clay Skipper, Staff Writer

Good Sheets, Regrettable Pillowcase

Casper Airy Linen

Casper Airy Linen

Casper

$250

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I tend to avoid linen shirts and trousers in the summer. Sure, a good pair of linen trousers is breathable and has a dry, crunchy hand that feels like it repels heat. But after a full day in linen pants it looks like I’m wearing an origami swan on my legs. The wrinkles and creases are brutal. But I’ll sleep in anything breathable to survive my apartment’s swampy summer microclimate. I’ll give Casper’s linen sheets that: I have yet to put my AC unit in (lazy), but they keep me feeling cool even on the most humid nights. (Want to save energy? Buy linen sheets!) I’m a pretty light sleeper, so the sheet’s initial scratchiness bothered me at first, but after a few nights they softened and flattened and now have a nice, smooth hand. But on hot nights I like to flip my pillow over to the cold side frequently—something I can’t do on the Casper pillowcase, because they designed it so the opening is in the center of the pillow. I can’t sleep with a seam on my face. Why make a pillowcase that only has one usable side, in linen or anything? —Sam Hine, Associate Editor

Rough Linen Smooth Linen Sheet Set

Rough Linen Smooth Linen Sheet Set

Rough Linen

$360

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I perfected my bedtime sleep routine last summer. Each night, I pulled my blackout shades down, set my AC to fan mode, slipped inside my open weave quilted blanket, and pulled my crisp percale sheets from Target over my head. I am living my best summer life, I thought. There is nothing I could do to improve this. Linen sheets promised to prove me wrong. Sheets made out of the most breathable form of cotton should be the best option for summer bedding, it’s a no-brainer. The problem is that linen can be notoriously scratchy and take a bit of time to break in before it’s comfortable. Even after washing the sheets from Rough Linen I tried, I found them a bit too…well…rough for my tastes. As I tossed and turned to find my ideal sleeping orientation, I seemed to feel each individual thread of the fitted sheet and pillowcase. Admittedly, I didn’t feel hot—the breathability on these sheets is pretty good. Even with my AC off, I didn’t find myself sweating through my pillow. But if you’re like me, someone who drenches their laundry in lavender fabric softener, you might want to steer clear. —Daniel Varghese, Tech and Lifestyle Commerce Writer

The Brooklinen linen sheets are soft and gentle, even after one maiden wash, and as bright white as a bag-fresh Hanes tee. They fit my queen mattress like a dream and—paired with the “graphite” Brooklinen duvet that I also tested—gave my bed that cozy influencer-laughing-and-drinking-coffee-in-bed aesthetic we crave (ask me about my skincare routine!). But here’s what I’ve learned: I don’t like linen sheets. I like crisp sheets. Cotton sheets that you can crease like construction paper, and that let you move from cool spot to cool spot throughout the night. These linen sheets—all linen sheets, I suspect—suffer from the same godawful problem as flannel sheets, which is that they remain resolutely body temperature at all times. No fresh side of the pillow, no rolling over into a chill zone. As a hot sleeper, I work hard to escape my body’s temperature. So despite how attractive my effortlessly rumpled bed looked, how airy and free-breathing the Brooklinen top-sheet felt, how enthusiastically [borat voice] my girlfriend gushed over the softness (she bought her own linen sheets a day later), I never came around. This is unfair to the Brooklinen sheets, to be honest. They deserve someone who appreciates them for what they are (feathery, beautiful, rich-feeling). —Jon Wilde, Digital Director


Source : The Editors of GQ Link

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