The Definitive Guide to Weighted Blanket Materials
Have you ever wondered what weighted blankets are made of?
Sure, you’ve read and heard about their excellent health benefits from friends and family, but what is under all that heaviness?
This article will discuss how weighted blankets are constructed and the pros and cons of the different material options available on the market.
Construction of Weighted Blankets
The majority of weighted blankets are made up of 5-7 layers. The image below is a perfect example of what weighted blanket layers look like.
As you can see from the image, most weighted blankets are made from three separate components:
The outer layer is the first thing you’ll see and feel in a weighted blanket.
Customers usually check the outer fabric layer of a weighted blanket before even buying them to see if they are soft, breathable, cool to the touch or even sensory-friendly.
When shopping for a weighted blanket, you need to determine what your preferences are. If you are a hot sleeper or someone who prefers to use a weighted blanket all day, you might need to consider the type of fabric used for the outer layer.
Some outer layers are removable, meaning they have zippers and buttons to keep them from coming off, while others are sewn directly into the blanket.
Different weighted blankets in the market have various layers of insulation and fluffing.
Like comforters and duvets, the weighted blanket’s inner layers are made up of additional fabrics that make the blanket warm, fluffier, and evenly distributed.
The inner layers also keep the beads/fillers in place through sewn-in pockets. To keep the beads from shifting around, fabric is usually sewn on top of the small pockets to keep them in place.
Most customers like you probably don’t know about this construction, but this is one of the most crucial parts of a weighted blanket. The materials used here can significantly affect the weighted blanket’s durability and weight distribution.
Next are fillers.
Fillers, beads, pellets, or whatever you prefer to call them are sewn in the blanket’s small quilted pockets to increase weight.
There are several weighted blanket fillers available in the market. It’s entirely up to you which fillers you prefer in your weighted blankets.
Weighted Blanket Outer Fabric
Now, on to the nitty-gritty part.
Weighted blankets come in a variety of fabrics. The most common ones you’ll see on the market are made of cotton, polyester, and bamboo.
As a customer, it is up to you to decide which type of fabric might be best for your needs and personal preferences.
We will be breaking down the pros and cons of the most common types of fabrics used for weighted blankets:
Cotton is by far the most popular and widely used fabric in weighted blankets.
It's no wonder that people choose cotton over all other fabrics because it's soft, hypoallergenic, and simple to care for.
Cotton, as a natural fiber, is more breathable than synthetic fabrics such as polyester. Keep in mind that there are many cotton-blend fabrics available, so if you want to reap the benefits of cotton, we recommend choosing a fabric made entirely of cotton.
Although cotton is one of the most comfortable fabrics available, it does have some drawbacks.
Cotton, aside from being more expensive (mainly when made from organic materials), is also notorious for shrinking quickly, primarily when used and washed multiple times.
And since they are considered natural fibers, they tend to be easily damaged and tend to fade when exposed to direct sunlight.
Polyester is a manufactured textile that is considered one of the most durable fabrics due to its pliant synthetic materials.
Lightweight to the touch, this type of fabric is also highly resistant to shrinkage and the usual wear and tear, unlike cotton. They are also machine and dryer friendly, so there is no need for any special care instructions.
So, if you're looking for a weighted blanket with a long-lasting construction, polyester is your best bet.
The bad news is that polyester, unlike bamboo and cotton, does not support airflow. This is due to the fact that, unlike natural fabrics, they do not have the same moisture-absorbing properties.
Sure, they may seem snuggly, smooth and luxurious to the skin, but when nighttime comes, this type of fabric can effectively trap heat, making you more prone to night sweats and poor sleep quality.
And since they are synthetic, people who have sensitive skin may get an allergic reaction when using polyester.
Bamboo is often used in weighted blankets that advertise themselves as “cooling.”
Known for their moisture-wicking abilities, bamboo fabrics are also eco-friendly and sustainable since they are made from natural materials.
They have the same luxurious and soft feel like cotton and are very breathable.
Furthermore, bamboo fabric is antibacterial and hypoallergenic, so those with textile sensitivities will have no trouble using it.
However, they have several drawbacks.
Since bamboo tends to shrink, make sure to obey the basic care instructions that come with the blanket. Because of the way they are made, they are often more prone to wrinkles than cotton.
Overall, not all weighted blanket fabrics are created equally.
As a consumer, it depends on which type of fabric fits well with your needs, wants, and personal preferences.
Weighted Blankets Inner Layers
As previously stated, the inner layers of weighted blankets are vital to their construction because the fabrics and stuffing help keep the weight evenly distributed.
Inner layers are made from various fabrics and stuffings, the most popular of which are cotton, polyester, and fluff.
Just a piece of advice: inner layers tend to make you hot since they’re comprised of several fabrics and stuffings.
So, be on the lookout for weighted blankets that calls themselves breathable.
Even though the outer blanket is breathable, the inner layer is still stuffed with several fabrics that ultimately traps heat.
Weighted Blankets Fillers
If you’re someone that’s not familiar with weighted blanket fillers, we’ve enumerated the common fillings used in weighted blankets and what their pros and cons are:
Poly pellets are the most commonly used fillers in weighted blankets. Not only are they affordable, but they are also considered safe, non-toxic, and hypoallergenic.
These pebble-like beads are made from polypropylene plastic and are also used in dolls and stuffed toys. In terms of durability, they are pretty tough and long-lasting as compared to other weighted blanket fillings.
The downside to poly pellets is that they are made from plastic, so they are not eco-friendly and recyclable.
Another thing to consider is that poly pellets tend to bunch together on the blanket’s edges, making the weight unevenly distributed. Plus, they are also noisier than micro glass beads. Those with sensory disorders should steer clear of these fillers to avoid overstimulation.
Micro Glass Beads
Another standard weighted blanket filling, micro glass beads are the perfect alternative to plastic poly pellets. Aside from being eco-friendly, they also have a smooth and delicate texture and are more cooling than plastic.
Cooling weighted blankets often use these beads instead of poly pellets since they don’t trap heat.
Weighted blankets with micro glass beads are also machine and dryer-friendly.
The only difference between them and poly plastic pellets is that the weighted blanket tends to be much thinner and less bulky because micro glass beads are denser.
This type of filling is ideal for hyper-sensitive people because they are not noisy and don’t rustle around the blanket.
However, this does not mean that micro glass beads don’t clump together.
Micro glass beads can sometimes bunch up on one part of the weighted blanket, especially after machine wash. They also tend to leak after prolonged usage.
Steel Shot Beads
Steel shot beads are often used in DIY weighted blankets. They are larger than micro glass beads and plastic poly pellets, so weighted blankets with these fillings are thinner.
The disadvantage of using weighted blankets with steel shot beads is that they are heavy.
Lightweight people, especially kids, can opt for a lighter weighted blanket such as micro glass beads instead of weighted blankets with steel shot beads.
And even though most weighted blankets filled with these fillers advertise them as machine washable, that isn’t always the case.
Since they are heavy, the beads can tear the fabric and leak when inside the machine.
Sometimes, these beads can also damage your washers and dryers, so always take extra care when putting them in these machines.
You may have never heard of weighted blankets filled with sand, but they exist (unfortunately).
Although they are inexpensive, we won’t recommend getting a weighted blanket with sand fillings.
Since sand has extremely fine particles, it can’t be washed regularly because they tend to clump together on one side of the blanket. Plus, drying them takes a lot of time.
They are also prone to leaking, especially when you clean them in washing machines, because they are hard to contain.
Another thing to look out for is their material.
Sand isn’t exactly hypoallergenic and non-toxic. They can cause skin allergies and other health issues with their non-organic materials.
Weighted blankets come in a variety of fabrics and fillings. It is up to you to decide which one best suits your personal preference and needs.
A general rule of thumb is to identify the type of materials used before purchasing because, at the end of the day, we just want to buy a weighted blanket that not only has health-boosting benefits but is also non-toxic, machine-washable, and long-lasting.
I’m sure, after reading this article and seeing the benefits and disadvantages of weighted blanket materials, you might be wondering:
Well, is there ever a weighted blanket that’s good enough for me?
The simple answer is… yes.
Enter Nuzzie Knit
We’ve been selling and manufacturing weighted blankets for over three years now, and we’ve had the wonderful opportunity to look at how we can address the issues of weighted blankets and create a product that solves our customers’ dilemma.
Introducing Nuzzie Knit.
First, our weighted blankets are not filled with 5-7 layers of fabric. Instead, the added weight comes from our luxurious fabric filling that keeps the blanket uniformly distributed.
The Nuzzie Knit also does not contain any beads or pellets, which makes them durable and long-lasting.
Because let’s face it, once beads leak from a weighted blanket, they will be most likely be thrown out.
Your thought might be:
How can this have pressure-relieving features when they don’t contain any form of fillings?
Our weighted blankets are made from layers upon layers of delicately hand-knitted fabric.
And compared with traditional weighted blankets, ours are softer and cozy.
Plus, they can also be used during the summer.
Why? Because the Nuzzie Knit has an open-knit weave design that encourages airflow, making them an ideal choice for hot sleepers.
And did we also mention? Our weighted blankets are machine-friendly!
Nuzzie Knit has been tested for different wash and dry cycles, so you won’t have to worry about damage and frays. Simply toss them in the washing machine, and they’re good to go!
Aside from its unique features, the Nuzzie Knit also comes in chic, aesthetically pleasing colors designed to complement the look of your home.
So you see, there is, after all, a perfect weighted blanket!
Interested in buying one? Get yours now at https://shopnuzzie.com/products/knit