Cooling Bedding Guide: The Cooling Blanket
You may ask, “Why would I use a cooling blanket? I mean isn’t the point of a blanket to keep you warm?”
Well… yes, and no.
The purpose of any piece of bedding is to keep you comfortable. Often, feelings of warmth can equate to feelings of cozy comfort, but for many people, heat becomes the enemy of sleep. These individuals seek refuge from the furious battle between slumber and high temperatures that can turn a bed into a sweat soaked landscape of brutal insomnia. Their search for sanctuary commonly leads them to purchasing new bedding, mattresses, and even attempting unconventional sleeping practices.
Often the first choice is a cooling blanket, but with so many options on the market today it can be difficult to even know where to start.
Many people prefer the weight of a relatively heavy top layer on their bed. This visceral feeling has both physical and psychological origins, and some believe that a heavy top layer of bedding (such as a comforter, duvet or quilt) mimics the feeling of being inside the womb. Studies actually show that weighted blankets can be extremely effective when used as a tool for calming individuals with autism and sensory issues.
- Stretchy in all direction
- Very Breathable
- Many decorative patterns
- Stretchy in only one direction (if at all)
- Less Breathable
- Less number of decorative patterns
Superior breathability, versatility and appearance mean that cooling blankets often use knit fabrics in their creation. Find a blanket with a high quality knit pattern or a loose weave that is aesthetically pleasing and comfy.
In the cooling bedding market there are really only two widely used technologies implemented to achieve heat reduction. Temperature regulating technology implements a number of methods to help fabrics absorb and disperse heat to keep you from having to push and pull at the covers all night. Another popular technology employs the use of moisture wicking fabrics. These fabrics work by wicking moisture away from skin through the fabric itself, in order to evaporate more easily, thereby lowering body temperatures.
These technologies each have their own qualities that make them unique in the use of bedding materials.
- Works through Thermal Conduction
- Multiple implementations
- Works through evaporation
- Fiber and weave/knit exclusive
Temperature regulating technology is a proactive approach compared to moisture wicking in that it works directly to absorb excess heat and pull those temperatures away from the body. Moisture wicking only cools the body once it has begun to sweat, allowing moisture to be pulled away from the skin for evaporation.
In terms of cooling blankets, most prefer to not sweat through their blanket in order to cool down.
Moisture wicking technology achieves its wicking quality through the use of specific raw materials and weave or knit patterns, limiting the construction method and characteristics it can produce. Temperature regulating technology (like Outlast®) can be infused directly into raw fiber or yarn, making it easy to implement without limiting materials or patterns.
Temperature regulating technology is superior to moisture wicking when added to cooling blankets because it absorbs and disperses heat while you sleep. Consider a blanket with Outlast® Technology.
- Extremely breathable
- Can shrink and wrinkle with washes
- Great insulator
- Can be soft (despite popular belief)
- Can be breathable (despite popular belief)
- Not absorbent
- Can trap heat
- Washability can be difficult
- Can be heavy (depending on construction)
- More expensive
- Wool (lanolin) allergies aren’t uncommon
- Good in blends with natural fibers
- Doesn’t retain moisture
- Great for moisture wicking
- Not breathable
- Environmental impact
- Not known for softness
- Cool to the touch
- Can be infused with Temp. Regulating Technology
- Environmental impact
The Slumber Cloud Cumulus Lightweight Comforter with Outlast technology
Get the best of both worlds by going with a lightweight option that doubles as a comforter. Pick a high cotton blanket that has been infused with temperature regulation technology for cooling comfort. We recommend the machine washable Cumulus Lightweight Comforter from Slumber Cloud that was ranked as one of our Top 5 Cooling Bedding Products.