Which is better according to experts?

Which is better according to experts?


Contrary to popular belief, teeth The difference between duvets and comforters. If you thought the two terms meant the same thing, don't worry. This is judgment-free territory. Both may feel like heaven the moment your body touches the pillow-soft covers, but you'll need to lift your head from the clouds when you need to buy bedding that suits your sleep style. There's more difference between the two than meets the eye. Before you buy these bedroom essentials, consider which one suits your lifestyle, aesthetics, and comfort.

“These days, shoppers and retailers make less of a distinction between comforters and duvets,” says Buffy CEO Leo Wang, “but that doesn't mean they're the same, so it's important to understand the difference.”

We spoke to Wang and Maddie Howey, co-founders of one of our favorite bedding brands, Pippen House, about the difference between duvets and comforters, how to choose the right one for you, and how to care for it, so you're set for a night of cozy, chic sleep.


What is a duvet?

A duvet is a two-part bedding system consisting of a duvet insert and a duvet cover. Duvet inserts are soft and fluffy and are often filled with duck feathers or goose down. More accessible and affordable versions of this luxurious bedding essential are available with a variety of vegan fillings and alternatives such as cotton, synthetics, and silk. Duvet inserts are usually plain white or natural and come in a variety of weights to suit temperature preferences. Duvet covers are like large pillowcases. They slide out and can be removed to be washed in the washing machine, replaced with a new cover of a different color or design, or to fluff up the insert. Duvet covers usually have a bottom closure with ties, buttons, or a zipper. Stylish duvet covers can be purchased in almost any color, design, fabric (flannel, linen, cotton, or silk), and for hot or cold weather preferences.

Bed with white bedspread

Pippen House

“A cover allows you to add a little variety (a different color, pattern, decoration) while keeping the filling clean,” says Howie. “Duvets are pretty and add another design element to your bed, so that's not a bad idea.”

The advantages of down comforters:

  • Easy to change bedding
  • Various color and pattern options
  • Easy to keep clean
  • Cover protects insert and extends its life
  • Can be used with fitted sheet only. No top sheet required

Down comforter disadvantages:

  • More expensive than a duvet
  • The duvet may shift inside the cover
  • Changing the cover is difficult
  • Covers are usually sold separately from the insert

To avoid waking up in the morning with your duvet filling bunched up around the edges of the cover, choose a quality duvet and duvet cover that are the same size and fit together at every corner like puzzle pieces. Some duvet inserts and covers even have ties on the inside corners to hold the filling in place.

What is a quilt?

Duvets don't require a cover and can be used on the bed as is. Wang explains, “A duvet is actually an evolution of a blanket. It takes the blanket a step further by sewing two fabric covers together to form a shell that is then stuffed with insulating material (such as cotton).”

The filling makes the comforter a lightweight yet cozy quilted blanket. If you sleep in cold weather, choose a comforter with more insulation and more filling. Because comforters can be used on their own, if your comforter is still wet when you wash your bedding at night, you'll end up with nothing on your bed but the sheets until it dries.

Dog sitting on bed

Frank Francis

Benefits of a quilt:

  • The inner fill does not move
  • The design can be vibrant and colorful
  • Often sold as a set with a pillow and fitted sheet
  • Easy to attach and remove from the bed
  • Covers a larger area of ​​the bed
  • Best used with fitted sheet and top sheet

Disadvantages of quilts:

  • It's not easy to switch to another option
  • May lose structure over time
  • Bulky
  • You may need to outsource dry cleaning, etc.

“For your comforter, make sure the care instructions say whether it's machine washable. If it is, just throw the whole comforter in the washing machine,” Wang says. “If it's not advertised as machine washable, you're in for a mess.” If your comforter isn't made to be washer-and-dryer safe, the filling can clump and the fabric can tear. You'll have to take it to the dry cleaners, which can be an expensive and tedious process.

How to choose a duvet and comforter

Bed with basket and pillow

Pam Schneider

Bed with purple blanket

Nathan Schroeder

The choice between a comforter or a duvet depends on your lifestyle, design, sleep preferences, and convenience preferences. Both bedding options have their advantages over the other, which can cost you time or money. For example, you can't use a duvet on its own without a cover like a comforter, because it will get dirty.

If you're shopping and you're not sure if the item you're considering is a duvet or a comforter, Wang suggests looking at the corners to see if it was designed and manufactured to go with a duvet cover. “The easiest way to tell the difference between the two is to see if the comforter has 'duvet cover ties' or 'corner ties' (fabric 'hooks' usually located at each of the duvet's outside corners). These ties are called 'duvet cover ties' because they can be tied to fabric ties located at the four inside corners of the duvet cover,” Wang says.

A huge fan of down duvets, Howie says their quality and flexibility make them worth the investment. “We believe that duvet covers should be replaced on wash day, like a sheet set,” she says. “Having a second duvet cover is always handy, as you can redecorate your bed in one fell swoop.”

How to properly wash duvets and comforters

Before washing your duvet or comforter, read the care label carefully. Many duvet and comforter inserts can be washed at home in your washing machine. If they can't be washed in your washing machine, Wang says, they're likely marked “dry clean only” or “spot clean only” or “hand wash and line dry.” As a result, you'll either incur the extra effort and expense, or sleep under something that can't be fully washed. Duvets should be washed much less frequently than comforters, about once a season.

Bed with lamp

Accessories, New Look, John Lewis

Canopy bed

Courtesy of Melissa Colgan

Howie advises consumers to consider the capacity of their washer and dryer and the size of their bedding. If a king-size comforter won't fit in your washing machine, it will be more difficult and take longer to wash. (Ideally, a washer that can hold 5 cubic feet of laundry will do, but some machines only hold 4 or 4.5 cubic feet.) Forcing your bedding into a washer that's too small can cause the filling to clump, rip the outer cover, or even damage the washer. It's wise to take your comforter to a laundry with commercial washing machines.

Not sure where you stand? Howie suggests skipping this debate altogether. “Many people get hotter the more they use blankets or coverlets instead of comforters or duvets. Duvets and comforters aren't essential, but they can be handy to fold up and keep at the foot of the bed for when you get cold,” she says.


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