We’ve all heard of silk as the high-quality fabric often used to produce soft and elegant clothes and bedding. But what you might not be aware of are the skincare benefits of silky pillowcases.
In this article, we’ve identified the key reasons you might choose a silk pillowcase for skincare, what to look out for when picking out new bedding, and where to find ethical and environmentally-friendly silk bedding.
Why is a silk pillowcase good for the skin?
There are a number of silk pillowcase benefits, particularly when it comes to skincare. But if you need a little more convincing, we’ve outlined the most important reasons you should consider silk when picking out your next pillowcases!
1. Relief from evening itchiness
If you suffer from sensitive skin, you’ll need to be picky about the type of bedding you buy. But this doesn’t just apply to your bed sheets and duvet cover: your pillowcases are just as important, and should support your face rather than become the cause of irritation and itching.
Silk is a popular solution among Brits with common skin conditions (it produces one of the best types of pillowcase for acne, eczema, etc), and can quickly become the answer to many of your concerns if you’ve been on the hunt for soft and soothing fabrics.
Not only does silk offer cloud-like comfort, but it also reduces inflammation and provides relief throughout the night, which’ll keep your sensitive skin happy – you may even see improvements. After all, beauty sleep needs a beauty pillow!
2. Improves skin hydration
Skincare and moisturisation are important parts of countless people’s daily routines. But skincare extends beyond the bathroom mirror, and your choice of pillowcase could be having a greater impact than you might realise. Whether the impact is positive or not, though, depends on the material.
Some pillowcases actually draw all the moisture from your face as you sleep, including the products you’ve potentially applied just before bed! Fortunately, this doesn’t apply to silk bedding, which offers naturally-hydrating qualities, especially when compared to other common textiles like cotton.
For instance, silk fibres are naturally moisture repellent, which limits and prevents skin dehydration as you sleep. Instead, you’ll retain the moisture, which can result in healthier skin. Similarly, silk is an effective moisture wicker, which helps to limit the amount of sweat that’s transferred to your bedding, while allowing your skin to comfortably breath.
3. Reduces redness and inflammation
We’ve looked at the ways advantages of silk when it comes to reducing hair and skin dehydration, but there’s an additional benefit you may not be aware of.
Everyday hair products often contain harsh ingredients designed for short-term gratification (although, it’s often healthier in the long run to switch these out for natural alternatives). However, if these are subsequently absorbed into your pillowcase and end up on your face, you can suffer from inflammation and reactions to the toxicity.
Fortunately, as highlighted earlier, sleeping on silk pillowcases ensures your skin remains hydrated and free of toxic chemicals that could cause redness.
4. Avoid clogged pores
There are few things (if any) you press your face up against as much as your pillows, so maintaining strong pillow hygiene is an absolute must.
You’ll want to pick out a pillowcase fabric that limits the spread of dirt, grime, and bacteria to your skin, or else you may experience an outbreak of spots or pimples. Fortunately, there are a number of options to choose from, including, of course, silk, which is especially useful for a number of reasons:
- Low moisture absorption: Silk doesn’t absorb as much moisture as other popular textiles, which means it’s less likely to act as a host for pesky mites and bacteria.
- Naturally cooling: Silk is an effective temperature regulator, which helps to keep you cool and comfortable at night – even in the hot summer months. This reduces the amount of sweat you produce, which would otherwise contribute to clogged pores.
- A cleaner fabric: Because silk doesn’t retain as much moisture as other fabrics, such as cotton, it generally remains cleaner for between laundry loads. That said, it’s still recommended to continue to regularly wash your silk bedding for ultimate freshness!
- Hypoallergenic properties: Silk is naturally hypoallergenic, which means you’re less likely to experience an allergic reaction to dust or grime than if you were to sleep on other fabrics.
5. Reduces wrinkles and fine lines
Whether you’re a light or heavy sleeper, stay still or fidget, you’ve likely experienced sleep creases at some point in your life – especially if you’re a side sleeper who loves to slump straight into your pillow.
You may be unfamiliar with the terminology, but the chances are that you know the feeling of looking in the mirror after a peaceful night’s sleep, only to find wrinkled, compression lines - or creases - etched into your cheeks or forehead. Caused by your crumpled pillows, while these lines will typically disappear during the day, the repeated creasing can lead to permanent wrinkling as time goes by.
Fortunately, unlike wrinkling caused by aging, you can prevent sleep creases from becoming your reality, by investing and switching to soft and smooth pillowcases that don’t put a strain on your face during the night. In fact, combatting wrinkling is one of the main advantages of silk, so there’s no better place to start if you’re hoping to keep those wrinkles at bay.
6. Enjoy healthier hair
Okay, so this might not necessarily be a skincare benefit, but it’s just as important. We all know how tiresome bed hair can be; the tangled, flat, and frizzy (somehow, all at once) frustration that comes from sleeping too heavily on your side is the bane of countless Brits’ mornings, but what if we told you there was a simple solution?
Just as silk pillowcases offer a soft and smooth resting place for your face, you’ll be pleased to discover that the same properties can benefit your hair. The gentle nature of silk helps to:
- Reduce morning frizz and tangling
- Reduce hair breakage
- Reduce split ends
- Improve hair softness
- Reduce hair dryness and enhance hydration (this is particularly helpful if you’ve recently bleached or dyed your hair)
- Limit scalp dryness and flakiness, ensuring your skin retains moisture
What to look for when buying silk pillowcases
We’ve looked at the reasons to buy silk bedding, but what are the main considerations to make when it comes to actually choosing new pillowcases? There are two key areas to focus on: the fabric weave and momme count.
When comparing silk weaves, there’s one standout option that should be at the top of your consideration list. And that’s the charmeuse weave, which is essentially what gives silk its smooth surface. Perhaps the best silk pillowcase for your skin, charmeuse is a tight weave which ensures a consistent softness that’s perfect for resting your head on after a long day.
When referencing fabric quality, thread count is the commonly used comparison point, with a higher count typically equalling a better textile – 300 is generally the hallmark of excellent bedding.
For silk, though, quality is measured using momme count, which measures the material’s thickness, density, and durability. As a rule of thumb, a momme count between 13-19 is considered good, while anything 20+ is of excellent quality.
Why choose Ethical Bedding’s eucalyptus silk pillowcases?
Adored around the world for its soft and soothing qualities, silk is a durable, elegant, and high-quality fabric that’s become a core staple across textile manufacturing.
However, the major downside to silk is the way in which it’s produced. Boiling hundreds of thousands of silkworms alive each year (or roughly 2,500 to produce a pound of silk), the material has come under scrutiny for its unethical methods.
Fortunately, there is an ethical alternative that provides an equally comfortable sleeping experience, without harming wildlife or the environment. Eucalyptus silk is sourced from the eucalyptus tree, a quick-growing tree typically grown on non-arable land.
Not only that, but Ethical Bedding eucalyptus silk pillowcases also boast an extended series of additional benefits, on top of the soft, hypoallergenic, and moisture wicking properties you’d expect of traditional silk:
- Eucalyptus pillowcases are coloured using plant-based, natural dyes.
- Each Ethical Bedding eucalyptus pillowcase is woven using Oeko-Tex certified fibres, ensuring there’s no negative impact on the environment.
- Eucalyptus pillowcases are machine washable, and easy to take care of.
- Eucalyptus pillowcases use around 95% less water in production than cotton alternatives. They also consume 30% less energy.
- Eucalyptus pillowcases from Ethical Bedding are carbon negative, meaning all carbon produced in manufacturing is offset through various clean initiatives.
Whether you’re looking for the best pillowcase for skincare or just upgrading your bedding collection, hopefully you’re now completely clued up when it comes to silk - and the way eucalyptus bedding can provide the same advantages without the associated downsides.
If you’ve been inspired, why not check out our complete bedding collection to find your next sleeping staple. Or for even more interesting insight like this from our sleep experts, head on over to the Ethical Bedding blog.