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Flat Sheets vs. Fitted Sheets: What are the Differences and How to Choose?

Flat sheets and fitted sheets are home textile products and are part of bedding sheets. The difference between a flat sheet and a fitted sheet is mainly in style and feature. The flat sheet is a piece of cloth, which is directly covered on the bed and naturally sags. The fitted sheet is around elastic bands, which can be put on the mattress tightly. Let's take a closer look at them together.

What is The Fitted Sheet? 

The gray fitted sheet

The fitted sheet is directly put on the mattress with an elastic fabric cover to protect the mattress. The mattress itself is very easy to get dirty, because there is a lot of dust in the air that will fall on our mattress. What's worse is that if we turn around often while sleeping, the sweat on the body will make the mattress more likely to breed bacteria. The mattress is a big piece of furniture and it is particularly troublesome to clean. Therefore, it is time for the fitted sheets to help us solve this problem easily.

The commonly used styles of the fitted sheets are all elastic, which looks like a parachute, and there is also an elastic band with only the four corners of the bottom.

What is The Flat Sheet?

A pink flat sheet set

The flat sheet is a wide rectangular fabric spread on the bed. The fabric is mainly made of pure cotton or blends. 100% cotton sheets have good breathability, moisture absorption, soft and comfortable touch, thick and durable. However, if you wash them, they will inevitably shrink. Polyester-cotton bed sheets are generally made of 35% cotton + 65% polyester blends characterized by lightness, wear-resistance and typically will not shrink or deform under regular washing and use. Of course, if you have enough budget, silk bed sheets are also a good choice.

The Commonly used flat sheet styles are plain, plaid, printing, jacquard, embroidery, etc. Those are beautiful in appearance, comfortable in hand, and good in warmth retention and bedding with practicality and decoration.

What are the differences between flat sheets and fitted sheets? 

Fitted sheet vs flat sheet

1. Different Styles

    The style is the biggest difference between the flat sheet and the fitted sheet.

    Flat Sheet: A piece of cloth placed directly on the bed and covers the bed frame.

    Fitted Sheet: It is fixed on the mattress with a rubber band and not easy to slide when sleeping.

    2. Different Sizes

      Fitted Sheets Size Chart

      Size

      Mattress Size

      (Inches to Centimeters)

      Mattress Thickness Range (Inches to Centimeters)

      Fitted Sheet     (Inches to Centimeters)

      Twin

      38 X 75 inches

      96.5 X 190.5 cm

      5 X 15 inches

      12.5 X 38 cm

      39 x 75 inches

      99 X 190.5 cm

      Twin XL

      39 X 80 inches

      99 X 203 cm

      4 X 15 inches

      10 X 38 cm

      39 x 80 inches

      99 X 203 cm

      Full

      54 X 75 inches

      137 X 190.5 cm

      6.5 X 15 inches

      16.5 X 38 cm

      54 x 75 inches

      137 X 190.5 cm

      Queen

      60 X 80 inches

      152.5 X 203 cm

      7.5 X 16 inches

      19 X 40.5 cm

      60 x 80 inches

      152.5 X 203 cm

      King

      76 X 80 inches

      193 X 203 cm

      10.5 X 17.5 inches

      26.5 X 44 cm

      78 x 80 inches

      198 X 203 cm

      California King

      72 X 84 inches

      183 X 213 cm

      10.5 X 17.5 inches

      26.5 X 44 cm

      72 x 84 inches

      183 X 213 cm

       

      Flat Sheet Size Chart

      Size

      Mattress Size

      (Inches to Centimeters)

      Flat Sheet

      (Inches to Centimeters)

      Twin

      38 X 75 inches

      96.5 X 190.5 cm

      66 x 96 inches

      167.5 x 243.5 cm

      Twin XL

      39 X 80 inches

      99 X 203 cm

      66 x 102 inches

      167.5 X 259 cm

      Full

      54 X 75 inches

      137 X 190.5 cm

      81 x 96 inches

      205.5 X 243.5 cm

      Queen

      60 X 80 inches

      152.5 X 203 cm

      90 x 102 inches

      228.5 X 259 cm

      King

      76 X 80 inches

      193 X 203 cm

      102 x 105 inches

      259 X 266.5 cm

      California King

      72 X 84 inches

      183 X 213 cm

      102 x 108 inches

      259 X 274 cm

       

      3. Different Characteristics

      Flat sheets are placed on the bed to prevent the mattress or even the bed frame  from getting dirty. They are comfortable to use but easy to slip off the bed, for which people needs to make the bed every day.

      Fitted sheets, however, wrap around the mattress and hug it tightly, easy to tidy and clean. Actually fitted sheets can be used as flat sheets, and they work better to stay unmoving on the bed. For people that are easy to toss and turn at night, the fitted sheets will get them rid of a messy bed.

      4. Different Processes

        As a square piece of fabric, a flat sheet only needs its four sides simply processed. The process of a fitted sheet is more complicated. The manufacturers need to cut four small squares off from the sheet corners, stitch the corners, and put elastic bands around, which helps the fitted sheet covers firmly on the mattress. Due to the different complexity of production, a fitted sheet is usually more expensive than a flat sheet.

        What are the advantages and disadvantages of flat sheets and fitted sheets?

        1. Fitted sheets

        Advantage: 

        Designed to fit the dimensions of the mattress, very convenient to use in daily life.

        Disadvantages:

        Unattractive in appearance and single in style;

        Not easy to install as flat sheets.

        2. Flat sheets

        Advantages:

        Attractive and diverse in style, great for decorating the beds;

        Easier to be placed over the bed than fitted sheets.

        Disadvantage:

        Move and slide easily, which bothers many people a lot.

        How to choose fitted sheets and flat sheets?

        A green flat sheet set on the bed

        1. Material comparison

        There are various types of fabrics used to make fitted sheets and flat sheets. Pure cotton is generally recommended. It has good air permeability and moisture absorption, soft and comfortable in touch and wear-resistant. Also, this natural material is good for health while in contact with skins. You can also choose sheets of different materials and thicknesses as the season changes. Cotton & linen or lyocell sheets are cool in summer, while flannel or pure cotton quilts provide more warmth in winter.

        2. Style comparison

        There are various styles of patterns available. You can choose flat sheets or fitted sheets that suit your preferences or bedroom style.

        3. Price comparison

        The costing of a 3-piece or 4-piece sheet set made of 100% cotton is around 50 to 60 dollars. Given the profit, it’s regular to buy a 100% cotton sheet around 100 dollars. If the sheets are made of high-quality fabrics such as imported long-staple cotton and silk or processed with complex craftsmanship, their price will be about 200 US dollars. You can purchase within your financial capacity.

        The flat sheet or the fitted sheet? Which is better?

        The conclusion about which is better depends both on personal tastes and the sizes of the mattress. The flat sheet and the fitted sheet both have pros and cons, and only those that suit you are the best. The fabrics of some fitted sheets are of high quality, so they can completely replace flat sheets. In conclusion, the fitted sheet is better in ease of use, while the flat sheet is more decorative.

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        Comments

        • Posted on Lauren D.

          Fitted sheets save me a lot of time making the bed. Love it!

        • Posted on Payton

          For me, the flat sheet is better to remove for cleaning.

        • Posted on Coryyyyy4

          Fitted sheet works better for me because I turn a lot at night LOL

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