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Have you started thinking about your cold-weather bedding? If not, here's a tip: There’s nothing cozier than flannel sheets. While your idea of flannel might involve plaid shirts, the fabric is actually a specific type of weave, not a pattern or a standalone material. In fact, flannel can come in both solids and patterns—and in a range of materials.
Flannel was originally made from wool that was napped to be soft, warm, and moisture-wicking, although today it’s more often made from cotton for more low-key everyday use. While flannel is undoubtedly great for wearing, it’s also the perfect fabric for bedding when you want to get extra snug.
Here, the flannel sheets to turn to when temperatures drop.
Best Overall: L.L. Bean Premium Supima Flannel Sheet Collection
Sizes: Full, Queen, King | Material: Supima cotton flannel | Weight: 170 GSM | Certifications: OEKO-TEX
While you might know L.L. Bean more for their outdoor apparel, the brand's Premium Supima Flannel Sheet Collection is without a doubt one of the best flannel sheets on the market. Supima is an extra-long-staple fiber grown in the United States that is known for its strength and softness. In fact, L.L. Bean claims its Supima flannel is 50 percent stronger than regular cotton flannel, and therefore less susceptible to shrinking and pilling.
These sheets come in three sizes and six muted colors, including tan and blue. They're not cheap, but they're less expensive than flannel sheets from luxury brands without sacrificing quality. Even better? They'll last for many years.
Best Budget: True North by Sleep Philosophy Flannel Sheet Set
Sizes: Twin, Twin XL, Full, Queen, King, Cal King | Material: Cotton flannel | Weight: 170 GSM | Certifications: Not listed
Budget-friendly flannel sheets aren't hard to find if you know where to look, and True North by Sleep Philosophy's Flannel Sheets are one of the best options out there. Made from 100 percent cotton flannel with a GSM of 170 (about 5.1 ounces), these sheets veer towards the lighter weight side of the scale while still being perfectly cozy for winter nights. They're available in a variety of colors and patterns, including a classic blue plaid and a whimsical owl pattern, and six standard sizes. Depending on which retailer you buy from, you can score them for even less with a coupon or during a sale.
Best Splurge: Boll & Branch Solid Flannel Sheet Set
Sizes: Twin, Twin XL, Full, Queen, King, Cal King, Split King | Material: Organic cotton flannel | Weight: Not listed | Certifications: OEKO-TEX, GOTS, Fair Trade
Luxury bedding brand Boll & Branch takes sustainability and social responsibility seriously. Not only that, but they also make truly exceptional sheets—like their heavyweight, 100 percent organic cotton flannel sheets.
Made in Portugal, these sheets are brushed to a pill-resistant finish and sheared to ensure they’re breathable, yet still very soft and cozy. Plus, they come in more sizes than most flannel sheets, so you'll be able to grab a pair whether you sleep on a Twin XL or Split King mattress. They're definitely on the expensive side though, but that's because they're made from premium materials and with a focus on sustainability.
Best Organic: Coyuchi Cloud Brushed Organic Flannel Sheets
Sizes: Twin, Full, Queen, King, Cal King | Material: Organic cotton flannel | Weight: Not listed | Certifications: GOTS, Made Safe
If you’re all about that organic lifestyle, opt for Coyuchi's Cloud Brushed Organic Flannel Sheets. In what’s essentially the home décor version of farm-to-table style—so farm-to-bed, if you will—Coyuchi partners with sustainable farms for its fibers, carefully overseeing production to ensure environmental and social responsibility.
The brand's ultra-luxe flannel sheets are made from cotton grown in Turkey and woven in Portugal, and they come in appropriate West Coast hues, from earthy tones to sea-and-sky-inspired blues. They have a brushed finish for extra softness and extra durability, and they’re a little heftier than some competitors, making them perfect for those in colder climates.
Best Patterned: Martha Stewart Collection Printed Flannel Sheet Set
Sizes: Twin, Full, Queen, King | Material: Cotton flannel | Weight: 173 GSM | Certifications: OEKO-TEX
If you want something classic, you can't go wrong with Martha Stewart's Flannel Sheets. They're super soft and have a perfect all-season weight of 173 GSM, or roughly 5.1 ounces. They're currently available in a whopping 16 patterns, including classic options like houndstooth and buffalo check and more whimsical options like holiday-themed dogs. No matter what you choose, you're guaranteed to end up with a super cozy (and fun!) winter den.
Best Solid: The Company Store Legends Hotel Velvet Flannel Sheet Set
Sizes: Twin, Twin XL, Full, Queen, King | Material: Cotton flannel | Weight: 5 ounces | Certifications: OEKO-TEX
With 14 solid color options to choose from, The Company Store’s Legends Hotel Velvet Flannel line is extra versatile. Weighing five ounces, these sheets are designed to be warm and durable, yet also breathable. And of course, they're luxuriously soft, thanks to the Portuguese long-staple cotton that’s brushed multiple times. Choosing a color is guaranteed to be fun too, as options range from neutral (white and gray) to bold (amber and merlot).
Best Heavy: Garnet Hill Signature Flannel Bedding
Sizes: Twin, Twin XL, Full, Queen, King, Cal King | Material: Cotton flannel | Weight: 6.03 ounces | Certifications: OEKO-TEX
For cold sleepers who really need something warm, check out the Garnet Hill Signature Flannel Sheets, which have a hefty weight of 6.03 ounces. These sheets are extremely soft, thanks to the tightly woven fabric that's been brushed multiple times on both sides.
These sheets are perfect for snuggling up beneath a comforter or duvet for extra cold nights, or can be layered with a blanket if you tend to sleep hot. Take note that they aren't sold as a set, though, so you'll have to purchase each piece individually—not a bad thing for those who don't like a top sheet.
Best Lightweight: Eddie Bauer Cotton Flannel Sheet Set
Sizes: Twin, Twin XL, Full, Queen, King | Material: Cotton flannel | Weight: 165 GSM | Certifications: Not listed
Since flannel sheets are best for colder weather, consider leaning into the spirit with a set of winter-inspired sheets. Eddie Bauer makes a holiday collection that includes patterns from snowflakes to Christmas trees to penguins with cute winter hats. They’re perfect for kids—or for the kids-at-heart who come out during the holiday season.
At 165 GSM (or roughly 4.8 ounces), these sheets are slightly lighter than average, so they aren't extra warm and cozy (although still heavier than regular cotton sheets). They're also not as durable as more expensive options, but will keep you warm and cozy throughout the winter months.
Overall, we recommend the L.L. Bean Premium Supima Flannel Sheets (view at L.L. Bean), due to their warmth, quality construction, and breathability. If you're looking for something a bit more budget-friendly, we recommend the True North by Sleep Philosophy Flannel Sheets (view at Bed Bath & Beyond), which have a lighter weight and come in a variety of colors and patterns.
What to Look for in Flannel Sheets
Flannel is not a specific material, but rather a type of fabric that has been napped for extra softness. It can be made from cotton, wool, and polyester, and each has its pros and cons in terms of softness, warmth, breathability, and cost. Ultimately, high-quality cotton is often the preferred material for balancing all four categories. Synthetics may be more affordable, but they’re also not as soft or breathable.
Material is also linked to pilling (or lack thereof). “Flannel made from Egyptian cotton or pima cotton is typically a good indication that the fibers will be longer and therefore less likely to pill,” says designer Maiya Kathryn of Maiya Kathryn Design. “A blend of cotton and polyester can be a good easy-care solution, and the blended yarns can prevent pilling.”
“When buying flannel sheets, you won't see any mention of thread count to determine quality but a listed weight which determines its softness and thickness,” says Kathryn. The metric is usually listed in ounces per square yard, or grams per square meter (listed as GSM)—around five ounces (142 grams) is pretty standard for flannel sheets made from organic materials. Heavier weights might be warmer, but buyers should be wary of quality, as some cheap flannels are heavy. Synthetic flannel sheets usually weigh less than five ounces.
Flannel commonly comes in plaid or tartan patterns, but they also come in other patterns, too, from florals to cartoon characters for kids. You can also find plenty of flannel sheets in solid colors, which are good for year-round use if you're a particularly cold sleeper.
How do you wash flannel sheets?
Always follow the manufacturer’s directions, but in general, you should wash flannel sheets on a gentle cycle with warm or cool water and mild detergent, then tumble dry them gently, too. Rougher cycles could lead to pilling. And be sure to wash them alone, as other fabrics (or things like zippers) will be abrasive to flannel sheets.
How do you keep flannel sheets soft?
Don’t use dryer sheets! They leave build-up behind on fabrics, which is especially bad for flannel as it will weigh down the nap, which is what makes the fabric so soft. If it’s pilling that’s making your sheets feel rough, use a razor or fabric shaver to shave off the little balls. Don’t use a lint brush or roller, as that could pull off more of the delicate fibers and cause more piling.
How do you prevent pilling on flannel sheets?
Unfortunately, pilling is part of the nature of flannel. “You can’t prevent flannel sheets from pilling because it happens due to physical rubbing against the sheets. So the only way to prevent pilling is to not sleep on the sheets,” says Andra DelMonico, lead interior designer of Trendey.
That said, not all hope is lost. For starters, invest in high-quality flannel, which is less likely to pill. Also, make sure you wash and dry them as gently as possible to lessen the friction. “Another trick is the first time you wash them, add vinegar to the rinse cycle, as it preserves the fabric from pilling,” says designer Susan Taylor of Davis Taylor Design.
Why Trust MyDomaine?
For this roundup, Stefanie Waldek researched dozens of flannel sheets, evaluating details like material, pattern, and weight. She also sampled some sheets herself, read hundreds of customer reviews, and talked to experts to build her knowledge base. Each of the products on this list is made from high-quality materials and provides softness, warmth, and breathability.