The Best Silk Pillowcases for Hair and Skin Cut Down on Frizz and Keep You Cool
There’s even a vegan alternative.
Published May 10, 2022 4:59 PM
Reading up on Domino’s shopping guides is like having your own personal product concierge. We do the tedious part—deep-dive research, hands-on testing, and tapping experts for advice—so all you have to do is hit “add to cart.” That’s why we call them Simply the Best.
Whether they tuck behind more decorative picks or stand loud and proud out front, pillowcases do more than offer a place to lay your head. “It might sound silly, but to me, bedding and pillowcases are the ‘outfit’ of your bedroom,” says digital entrepreneur and consultant (and Pillow Cube enthusiast) Alyssa Coscarelli. “They can anchor a bedroom and really hone in on the aesthetic, but at the same time are totally changeable and able to rotate to something new.”
And when a pillowcase is made from silk? Hello, best friend to soft hair and skin. Board-certified dermatologist Hadley King says that silk pillowcases and sheets are ideal for sensitive skin and hair, thanks to the lightweight, breathable, and nonirritating fabric. “For hair, silk will cause less friction, which may mean less frizz,” she explains. “Silk is also more likely to maintain the natural oils in the hair.”
Sometimes silk can skew a little ’70s waterbed (and not in a good way). Thankfully, stylish options are plentiful today; from crisp white to cool colors, anyone can find one that suits their bedroom decor. Below, we’ve rounded up the best silk pillowcases for your hair and skin on the market.
- Best overall: Brooklinen Mulberry Silk Pillowcase
- Best value: ZimaSilk Mulberry Silk Pillowcase
- Best colors: Good Side Silk Pillowcase
- Best luxe: Parachute Silk Pillowcase
- Best matching accessories: Slip Zippered Pillowcase
- Best silk alternative: Eucalypso Eucalyptus Silk Tencel Pillowcase Set
Best Overall: Brooklinen Mulberry Silk Pillowcase
Sizes: Standard, king | Material: 100% pure mulberry silk | Cooling: Yes, suitable for year-round use
What we like:
- Generous return policy
- Matching accessories available
- Limited solid colors
Why we chose it: A high-end item for an affordable price from a trusted brand.
Brooklinen is known for its bedding, towels, decor, and loungewear, so it’s no surprise that its 100 percent mulberry silk pillowcase options are also top-notch. A bit of background on the fabric: Mulberry silk is made using the secretions of domesticated silkworms (stay with us) that feed on the leaves of the mulberry tree. The tree’s long individual silk fibers make it softer than wild silk, which consists of shorter and thicker fibers. That seemingly small but crucial difference results in wild silk’s rougher texture. The more you know, right?
Returns and exchanges are allowed up to one year (!) after purchase using a prepaid shipping label; so if you don’t love it, no sweat. However, after just a few periods of sleep, you likely won’t want to give it up.
Best Value: ZimaSilk Mulberry Silk Pillowcase
Sizes: Queen, standard, king, toddler, throw, body | Material: 6a mulberry silk | Cooling: Yes
What we like:
- Affordable price point
- Multiple color options
- Made from the highest-grade silk
- Includes a hidden zipper
Why we chose it: A top-rated option that’s budget-friendly and made from pure silk.
We’ll just come out and say it: The biggest perk of a ZimaSilk pillowcase is the price. It is significantly less costly than the other options on this list, yet has similar features, like multiple colors and sizes. You can pick one up for everyone in the family since the sizing ranges from toddler to king. And if you want to shield your hair while lounging (or, let’s be real, napping) on the sofa, you can try a throw-size case as well.
Best Colors: Good Side Silk Pillowcase
Sizes: Standard | Material: 6a, 22-momme mulberry silk | Cooling: Yes
What we like:
- Has a matte look
- Chic colors
- Comes in a single or pair
- Limited size options
- pH-neutral detergent recommended
Why we chose it: Six very stylish colors and a matte look made us click “add to cart.”
Good Side pillowcases just look cool—it’s that simple. The colors are anything but traditional (chartreuse, sage, and terracotta, just to name a few) and allow you to change the vibe of your room in the time it takes to put on a new pillowcase. Coscarelli notes that it’s beneficial to invest in multiple color options so you can alter your decor based on mood, season, or practicality. That way, if one is in the wash, you can mix it up with another set.
Best Luxe: Parachute Silk Pillowcase
Sizes: Standard, king | Material: 25 momme mulberry silk | Cooling: Yes
What we like:
- Free shipping and returns
- Oeko-Tex certified
- Side opening includes a hidden flap
- Only two colors offered
Why we chose it: Say goodbye to split ends, aka less time spent in your hairstylist’s chair.
Parachute’s silk pillowcase is a minimalist’s dream. The two airy colorways, white and light gray, are neutrals that will seamlessly suit many styles. It is Oeko-Tex certified, which means it passes the test for harmful chemicals and synthetics at the highest level, and isn’t artificially softened. (Parachute claims it visibly improve wrinkles and hair health.)
Pro tip: Coscarelli recommends pairing solid or neutral pillowcases with more statement-making bedding.
Best Matching Accessories: Slip Zippered Pillowcase
Sizes: Queen, king | Material: Silk | Cooling: No
What we like:
- Designed to absorb less face moisturizer
- Hypoallergenic sham
- Limited return policy
- Higher price point
Why we chose it: Coordinate all of your silk loungewear with this no-bedhead brand.
This list would be incomplete without an option from Slip. In the early 2000s, founder Fiona Steward created the line after a bad experience involving acne medicine, which left her hair thin and skin extremely sensitive. Her dermatologist recommended sleeping on silk…and voilà: The first silk pillowcase considered a beauty product was born. Slip’s products are finished with a zipper, which if you’ve ever woken up with your pillowcase half off, you’ll appreciate. The entire product line (a color coordinator’s dream) includes other seriously soft items like scrunchies, sleep masks that contour your lashes, hair wraps, and even superlong robes. They’re great for gifting or to treat yourself.
Best Silk Alternative: Eucalypso Eucalyptus Silk Tencel Pillowcase Set
Sizes: Standard, king | Material: Tencel | Cooling: Yes
What we like:
- Hypoallergenic and antibacterial
- Comes in a set
- Alternative fabric to silk
Why we chose it: Gentle on the skin, gentle to the earth.
Eucalypso takes the term earth-friendly seriously, making its skin- and hair-friendly pillowcases from 100 percent Tencel Lyocell fibers. Not familiar? Tencel has all the qualities of silk without involving silkworms. Lyocell (the generic name for Tencel) is long-lasting and moisture wicking, and has the same durability as silk. Developed sustainably from eucalyptus tree wood pulp—hence the company’s name—it’s vegan, to boot. And Eucalypso doesn’t only make Tencel pillowcases: The home brand sells duvet covers, eye masks, and crib sheets in the material as well.
How We Chose These Products
The best silk pillowcases for hair and skin vary in color, pattern, and size. However, one common denominator is quality material. When researching and choosing our favorites, we kept in mind the brand’s reputation, variety of styles offered, durability, temperature regulation, and overall design. We relied on style, hair-care, and dermatology experts to weigh in on the details, which helped us bring together a list of products that look as good as they feel.
Our Shopping Checklist
Silk is soft—we all know that. But the fabric has a range. From natural silk to environmentally friendly alternatives like Tencel, the smooth material offers up a comfy place to rest your head (or body) and maintains moisture while you catch some z’s. Here are the types you can expect to see while shopping:
- Silk: If you see simply “silk” on a label, then it’s safe to assume it is made out of regular silk threads.
- Mulberry silk: The highest quality of silk. It’s stronger and considered more luxe due to its extra-smooth texture.
- Tencel: If choosing sustainable fabrics is important to you, then picking Tencel is a no-brainer. You get the feel of natural silk without any wariness about how it was made.
Regardless of the fiber it’s made from, silk is generally breathable and ideal for hair and skin. Shelly Aguirre, a stylist at Maxine Salon in Chicago, agrees that silk pillowcases visibly improve hair health as opposed to cotton options, which can cause friction and breakage. “Fine hair can really benefit from silk pillowcases, as can curly hair,” she says. “Blonde hair tends to be more fragile, so silk will help prevent damage. Also, curly hair tends to get frizzy with the friction of cotton, so silk will help the hair ‘glide’ instead.”
Before purchasing a pillowcase, be sure to check the size of your pillow so you invest in one that will fit correctly. Our picks will fit a twin-, queen-, and king-size pillow. Plus there are options for children, throw pillows, and body pillows. It’s important to note that heat will cause the material to shrink, so it’s best to avoid the dryer.
The natural cooling effect of silk is incredibly welcome during warmer months, since the fabric is breathable and will help retain moisture. If you’re a hot sleeper, leave silk pillowcases on all year long.
Care and Maintenance
If you have the time, it’s best to hand-wash silk pillowcases; however, every option on this list allows for machine washing. Do you want best practices? Here’s the rundown: Wash in cold water in a delicate setting, ideally in a mesh bag. Always hang dry or lay flat to ensure they maintain their natural shape.
Q: How often should you wash silk pillowcases?
It’s important to regularly wash any pillowcase to remove dirt, debris, and allergens from the fabric. Every seven to 10 days is a good cycle to shoot for.
Q: How long do silk pillowcases last?
High-quality products—like the options on this list—will last for years when taken care of properly. If you follow the care instructions, you can expect to keep a silk pillowcase for up to three years. Due to regular cleaning, we recommend owning at least two so you can swap them out when one is in the wash.
The Last Word
Often a stylish product isn’t as practical as a more functional option. Thankfully, the best silk pillowcases for hair and skin are both, offering up gentle yet durable fabrics in bold colors and smart design.
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