Winter Comforters vs. Summer Comforters: Best Choices for Seasonal Bedding
The drifting snowflakes and howl of winter winds have vanished and have been replaced by balmy breezes, floating fireflies, and the chirrup of crickets. But has your bedding also changed with the seasons, or is your heavy flannel winter comforter making its way each night to the floor at the foot of the bed, when you kick it off in favor of sleeping under only a sheet?With the welcome change of seasons, your bed, the focal point of the sanctuary that is your bedroom, might also welcome a refreshing change. We naturally change our wardrobes with the season, but not everyone thinks to change their bed coverings. But where do you begin and how do you choose?
The Best Winter Comforters to Keep Warm
In the winter you want your bedding to feel warm and cozy. Dark colors and soft fabrics are better for transferring heat. When the days become shorter and the temperature drops, you may find yourself reaching into your bottom dresser drawer for your favorite flannel shirt, or climbing into bed in the old flannel nightgown you wouldn’t want to be seen in, but still find irresistible on blustery nights.
Flannel is well-known for its soft warmth and ability to trap heat, so why not choose that particular old favorite for your winter comforter? Flannel comforters are not only toasty and soft, they come in a wide variety of winter colors and patterns, and are filled with insulating materials suitable for frosty nights.Down-filled comforters are always a top choice for winter if you want to feel snug in your bed while visions of sugar plums dance through your head. Down is a natural insulator, as it comes from the undercoat of duck and goose feathers; the very feathers which make it possible for the birds to survive in icy water. Down feels light and fluffy, but it traps warmth without also trapping in moisture. Down filling is uniquely breathable, so the air circulation keeps you from perspiring. So while you will be toasty and warm, you aren’t likely to ever feel sweaty or clammy under a cozy down-filled comforter. If you are allergic to down fillers, or wish to avoid the expense, there are many affordable down alternatives, both natural and synthetic, that are also snug and warm for winter.
Wool is another wonderfully insulating fabric to keep you warm on frosty nights. You can find wool-filled comforters in a variety of warm and restful fabric coverings that are perfect for winter, such as flannel, micro-suede, fleece, and even denim, faux fur, or super-soft sherpa. These warm and inviting comforters will guarantee many a long winter’s nap as the winter months slowly pass.
The Best Summer Comforters for Any Weather
The drifting snowflakes and howl of winter winds have vanished and have been replaced by balmy breezes, floating fireflies and the chirrup of crickets. It's time to give up the loft and coziness of a comforter during the summer months in favor of a lightweight blanket. A lighter blanket may keep you cooler on summer nights, but it doesn’t offer the same fluffy, cozy appeal as a comforter. The solution is to find a comforter or blanket that is made specifically for hot summer nights. A lightweight down blanket, or a cotton blanket with an open weave, are good options for staying cool on a warm night while still enjoying the comfort of being under covers.In the summer you may wish to choose lighter colors, not just for their seasonal appeal, but also because lighter colors reflect rather than absorb heat. It’s a good idea to choose sheets with a higher thread count, as smoother sheets generally mean cooler sheets, and the same holds true for your comforter.
For comforters, the right fabric, coupled with a lightweight fill, makes all the difference in keeping you cool all night long. Linen is naturally both cooling and moisture-wicking and makes a great choice for summer months. Percale fabrics are also crisp and smooth, for a cooler night’s sleep.
Some recent popular choices for summer are breathable natural fabrics such as eucalyptus and bamboo fibers, both of which have moisture-wicking properties to keep you cool, even if your bed holds the combined body heat of two people. Silk is also naturally cooling and has been a popular summer bedding option for centuries, not only for its smooth coolness, but also for its natural antimicrobial properties that make it resistant to dust mites and bedbugs. This is why silk was the prized bedding choice for royalty in ancient times.
When the geese fly south, and the leaves begin to fall, it’s time to change your bed’s comforter and aim for the warmer, more insulating fabrics and fills. When the geese migrate back, and the stores fill with barbecue supplies and 4th of July decorations, it’s time to think about lightening up your comforter to move with the changing seasons as well.