The Best Silk Pillowcases Won’t Be an Eyesore on Your Bed—Trust Us
Say hello to playful palettes and patterns.
Published May 29, 2022 1:39 AM
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.
While there is no singular cure-all solution for overprocessed hair or breakouts, we’re always game to try remedies as simple as buying a silk pillowcase—but beyond its possible magic qualities, the smooth material is worth bringing home for its bedtime appeal just the same. Naturally cooling, silk is just as great for hot sleepers (a welcome swap come summertime from your cozy flannels). And we’ll admit, we were definitely skeptical as to whether this beauty trend could stand up alone on our design-forward beds, preferring to hide its luster behind Euro shams come nightfall. But upon closer inspection, we’ve realized that the best silk pillowcases offer more than just that buttery-soft feel—we found more than a few fun, eye-catching covers donning playful patterns and bright colors. While adding one may not cure your acne-prone skin overnight, it could be the finishing touch to your current bed setup. No matter your reasons for seeking out the best silk pillowcases, we rounded up our favorites, below—from trusted brands using high-quality silk (no polyester here!) to, of course, picks with fresh designs.
- Best for bright pastels: Good Side
- Best for playful patterns: Brooklinen
- Best for jewel tones: Slip
- Best for linen lovers: Cultiver
- Best for tie-dye: Your Upstate
- Best for luxe neutrals: Nest Bedding
Best for Bright Pastels: Good Side Silk Pillowcase
Sizes: Standard | Material: 6A mulberry silk | Momme: 22
What we like:
- Envelope style
- Sold single or as a set
- Unique, matte-ish look
- Matching accessories (scrunchies!) available
- Free shipping only on orders over $89
- Preferably machine-wash cold
Why we chose it: From sage to terracotta, choose among six fun shades (check out chartreuse!) in a sand-wash finish.
An all-white bedroom setup does imbue an overall clean, put-together feel, but in this case, we don’t want it; we can’t help but find ourselves drawn to the colorful options of Good Side’s pillowcases. You won’t find a single shade of cream or gray here— instead embrace the color obsession of the moment with sage or take things up another notch with the more energizing chartreuse. If your bed truly is your sleep sanctuary, you can stick to something a bit more calming, like lavender or peach. Either way, Good Side’s M.O. is beauty in bed, and it offers matching eye masks and scrunchies in the same soothing material.
Best for Playful Patterns: Brooklinen Mulberry Silk Pillowcase
Sizes: Standard, king | Material: Mulberry silk | Momme: 22
What we like:
- 1 year for returns and exchanges
- Matching accessories available
- Machine washable
- Only sold individually as opposed to a set
- Doesn’t offer an envelope closure
Why we chose it: Pamper yourself with a patterned headrest.
In addition to Brooklinen’s original silk launch, offering just a few neutral color selections and one star-clad pattern, the company’s new limited-edition release gives a modern upgrade to traditional florals (warm wild peach with rosy pinks and corals as well as wild purple; pairing a mustard yellow with a bluer lilac). We love the layered look, which will do just fine on its own in front of your headboard.
Best for Jewel Tones: Slip Silk Pillowcase
Sizes: Standard | Material: Slip silk, mulberry silk blend | Momme: 22
What we like:
- Colors as opulent as your gold hoop earrings or silver bracelet
- Designed for hair and skin
- Envelope enclosure
- Matching accessories available
- Wrinkles easily (but you can steam them out)
Why we chose it: Up the glam factor in your bedroom by bringing home the shiny yet soft sheen of silk in rich colors.
Slip was one of the first companies to design pillowcases specifically to keep hair frizz and wrinkles at bay, and it has gained itself a devout following ever since. And while, yes, its proprietary blend was specifically designed for hair and skin (the company lists the major benefits, including that it absorbs far less face cream and creates less than 43 percent friction compared to cotton), we look to the brand for saturated jewel tones for when a bright pastel is, well, a bit too bright. Dark plum, rich navy, rose gold like caramel, and luscious gold—these pillowcases have an incandescence about them that can only be described as luxurious.
Best for Linen Lovers: Cultiver Silk Linen Flip Pillowcase
Sizes: Standard | Material: Mulberry silk and European flax linen | Momme: 19
What we like:
- Closes with an invisible zipper
- Free shipping and returns (up to 30 days) in the U.S.
- Bundle for a matching eye mask
- Do not tumble dry
Why we chose it: For the indecisive or silk skeptical, flip your pillow over for linen during the day to secretly enjoy the benefits of silk at night.
If you’re not ready to fully commit to silk, then Cultiver offers the best of both worlds and makes styling a bed that much easier with a double-sided situation. And if you’ve ever woken up with your pillowcase scrunched up or slipping off, when you rest your face on the silk side, the linen will keep the smooth material in place while you snooze (its hidden zippered edge helps, too). This pick is also a hot sleeper’s dream, as both materials are revered for their temperature-regulating properties (and for being hypoallergenic).
Best for Tie-Dye: Your Upstate Silk Pillowcase
Sizes: Standard, king | Material: Silk charmeuse or Mulberry silk | Momme: Varies
What we like:
- Hand-dyed by small batch in New York City
- Plant-based colors
- Sold separately or as sets
- Most expensive of the list
Why we chose it: Better than DIYing an old T-shirt.
If solids aren’t your thing, have you ever thought of tie-dye? Here, there are 13 colorful combinations to choose from, whether you’re into pinks, blues, or greens. Since all of these are handmade—with plant-based dyes you can buy and bring home to re-create the look yourself—your pillowcase will be one of a kind, unique from anyone else’s. And we think that’s pretty cool, so you can even consider layering on similar dyes in throw blankets. For care: Machine wash cold and tumble dry on low.
Best for Luxe Neutrals: Nest Bedding Silk Luxury Pillowcase
Sizes: Standard, king | Material: Mulberry silk | Momme: 19
What we like:
- 30-night trial
- Aloe vera–and–argan oil–infused silk
- Free shipping in 3 to 5 business days
- Only 2 color choices (but that could be a good thing)
- Feels thin to the touch
Why we chose it: If you have choice paralysis, stick to the basics with Nest Bedding.
There are only two color options through Nest Bedding: pearl or stone. And while our list has been applauding color variety, we found that instead, this pillowcase came with different perks, including a 30-night risk-free trial so you can see if the hype is worth it. Its standout feature, however, are the threads infused with argan oil and aloe vera, emphasizing the natural benefits of silk for your hair and skin to shine just as well as your new pillowcase.
We Also Like
- Silk is pricey, but the ZimaSilk Mulberry Silk Pillowcase won’t run you more than $40.
- This Kassatex Boudoir Eyemask and Pillowcase and Sara Gilbane collab combines a pink floral and piped edge, and includes a matching eye mask for seriously stylish z’s.
- For luxe-looking neutrals, we’re eyeing The Sunday Citizen’s simple selection of a creamy color called latte and the brighter pearl white made with 100 percent silk.
- Parachute’s Silk Pillowcase boasts a 25 momme weight, earning it points for durability, but is offered only in white and light gray.
How We Chose These Products
Naturally, the best silk pillowcases are often reserved for hair and skin, but we wanted to put together a list that also highlighted this material’s unusual and appealing luster. While most dermatologist- or stylist-approved options often only come in a few neutral colors, our list encompasses a range or hues (although it still backs that a plain old white is just fine, too). And while all of these offer their own unique palettes or patterns, we made sure to list only the best-quality silk, which means a momme of 19 or higher.
Our Shopping Checklist
Types of Silk
“The majority of pillowcases are cotton or cotton and a synthetic blend, like polyester. While cotton is also a wonderful material, it doesn’t compare to the benefits of silk when used as a pillowcase,” argues Brooke Alexander, Nest Bedding’s chief branding officer. “Additionally, while cotton can be made hypoallergenic, silk is naturally so. Thus using a silk pillowcase is great for those with underlying allergies or asthma.”
The main form of silk you’ll come across in your pillowcase search will be mulberry silk, which refers to the mulberry leaves silkworms eat but is commonly used for pillowcases for its consistent color, durability, and uniformity. Silk is a thinly threaded natural fiber like cotton, but with a shiner, smoother texture, derived from an insect rather than a plant, making it an animal product. There’s also charmeuse silk, which refers to a different weave, offering a shinier front and flatter-looking back side.
Sullivan’s pro tip to determine whether you have a low- or high-quality silk is to look out for this quanitifier: momme. This unit, which can range from 6 to 30, refers to a silk’s weight, which directly alludes to the density and durability of the weave. “The higher the momme, the better the quality of the silk,” she adds. Single-digit mommes are more close to chiffon, whereas a momme of 19 or higher, in the 20s, is thicker.
In general, silk is a naturally breathable fiber. Its thin threads feel light and airy and are less likely to retain moisture and, consequently, sweat (though maybe not as well as cotton, but it will feel cooler to the touch against your skin when you slide into bed at night).
Q: What are the benefits of sleeping on silk for hair and skin?
As Maxine Salon stylist Shelly Aguirre has told us, silk is definitely the better choice over cotton when it comes to pillowcases for hair and skin. “Fine hair can really benefit from silk pillowcases, as can curly hair,” she explains. “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.”
In the beauty industry, Alexander adds that “silk pillowcases are known to naturally help hair retain moisture and reduce friction that causes tangles and damage. Silk’s smooth surface also prevents creases and fine lines in skin, which can support the integrity of it while you age.”
Q: Can you sleep with wet hair on a silk pillowcase?
You’ve probably heard or read somewhere that twisting your hair up in a cotton towel to dry can damage your hair and irritate split ends, but with a silk pillowcase you can go to bed with a wet head no sweat. In fact, silk helps reduce friction and may even help tame your frizz while you catch up on z’s throughout the night. Although, according to beauty experts, if breakage and frizz is your main concern, it’s actually recommended to dry your mane before bed.
Q: How can I properly care for silk pillowcases?
Most of us think of silk as a material that requires a bit of extra love and care; if you’ve ever had a blouse in this material shrink, fade, or fray, you may be hesitant to adopt the same luxurious fabric for something that needs to be washed as frequently as bedding. Thankfully, nearly all of the pillowcases on our list can be safely tossed in the wash, but maybe avoid adding them to a hot drying cycle, as they can shrink (and this is key, because when you seek a cover for a specifically sized pillow, it could become completely unusable for its intended purpose). A mild detergent is best, and you’ll want to avoid any boosting agents or bleach. If they turn out a bit wrinkly after drying, ironing is totally fine, though you may want to stick to a low heat setting.
The Last Word
The best silk pillowcases aren’t just for fighting off fine lines while you slumber—although that’s definitely a fair reason to invest in this fabric—they’re just as great for hot sleepers (or for those of us who prefer a silkier embrace during the warmer summer months) and they don’t have to look tacky. We found plenty of elevated options, sporting both colors and patterns, that have us welcoming this fabric into our bedding rotation or even as a mainstay.
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