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Momme count. Charmeuse weave. Mulberry silk. OEKO-TEX® Standard 100. Grade 6A.
If it’s your first time shopping for a pure silk pillowcase, then chances are all of the terms above sound a bit like reading a foreign-language dictionary.
However, once you understand what the terms above mean, you’re like the person who’s mastered the foreign language. You know what the words mean, and you can use them to guide your decisions.
So, too, is it for the informed silk pillowcase buyer. The purpose of this guide is to act as a translator of terms to help you to make the best pure silk pillowcase purchase possible. It include seven major points to consider as you shop for your pure silk pillowcase.
1. What Is a Pure Mulberry Silk Pillowcase Made of, Anyway?
Bombyx mori silkworms feeding on the leaves of the mulberry tree produce the silk for products that carry the label "100% pure mulberry silk." The pure silk threads from those silkworms' cocoons are woven into the fabric that makes up pure silk pillowcases.
It's a natural fiber, like cotton, which is important if you're interested in avoiding synthetic fabrics on your bed (and skin).
If the label on your silk pillowcase doesn't say that it's 100% pure silk, then know that it's a silk blend (or possibly even synthetic satin) that you're covering your pillow with and not pure silk.
Other types of silk made from silkworms
Most of the silk that's used for the creation of a pure silk pillowcase is of the mulberry silkworm variety. Mulberry silk is known to be the purest, finest silk available—which explains why it's so coveted.
However, other types of silk from silkworms include tussah silk (from tussah silkworms), muga silk (from Antheraea assamensis silkworm), and eri silk (from Philosamia rinini, a domesticated silkworm).
But if you're looking for the best of the best, make sure you're selecting 100% mulberry silk.
Other animals that create silk threads
Silkworms aren't the only animals that create silk. Silk from mussels, also known as Sea Silk, produces silk that’s eventually made into Byssus Cloth.
Additionally, there is also spider silk, which typically isn't available to the public. Spider silk is so strong, it's used to reinforce things like body armor, according to the New York Times.
Pure silk: Hardier than Kevlar, soft as a cotton ball
Silk from spiders is known as the strongest silk. But silk from silkworms can rivals spider silk's strength if developed under the right conditions, according to Nature.com.
This literally gives the silk in your pure silk pillowcases the strength of steel but the softness of a cotton ball.
If you think mulberry silk is a delicate, fragile fabric—don't be fooled. It only looks that way because it's so divinely soft. Pure silk is actually extremely durable and can last many years or even decades. Mulberry silk is the ultimate combination of luxury and durability.
2. Facts About Grade 6A Pure Silk
Silk merchants sell silk in different grades. Most commonly, the silk you buy is labeled with a grade from A to C. Silk grading also comes with a numbering system, ranging from 2 to 6.
Pure Grade A silk pillowcases (and other pure silk accessories) represent quality. It's made from long strands of pure silk threads.
Because of the quality of the threads, as well as the work required to bring these threads from a silkworm's cocoon to your pillow, the price of Grade 6A pure silk is higher.
How do I know I'm buying pure silk?
One way you can tell that you're buying pure silk is by the product description or label.
If it doesn't indicate that the silk pillowcases you're looking at are Grade 6A, then it's silk of an inferior quality, or possibly even a silk blend, not pure silk. So if it's the purest silk you're after, keep shopping!
3. Look for a Momme Weight of 22
Aside from looking for the highest grade of silk possible, look also for the "momme weight" of silk. The momme count is similar to the thread count of cotton.
As with high thread count cotton, high momme count silk is considered more luxurious. Another way to say it is, the threads of a higher momme count silk are woven more tightly together.
These high quality silks also has a greater thread thickness.
Pure silk pillowcases: The role of momme weight in your pillowcase
The charmeuse weave is a very common weave for silk bedding.
However, to avoid any confusion as you shop, you should also know that there are other types of silk weaves, like chiffon, gauze, and taffeta, to name but a few.
Pure mulberry silk pillowcases have a higher momme weight than chiffon or gauze weave, usually between 19 and 30 momme.
22 momme count: Just right for pure silk pillowcases
The best pure silk pillowcases, like Blissy, are made from 22-momme weight silk. Pure silk fabrics of heavier weights, like 30-momme, are typically found on heavier bedding, like duvets.
The 22-momme weight is just right for sleeping on. It's heavy enough to be durable, but light enough to keep your body temperature steady and feel ultra-soft against your cheek.
As with the grade of silk, if the momme weight isn't listed, it's best to keep shopping.
4. Beyond Ordinary Pillowcases: Silk Pillowcases vs Satin Pillowcases
Some people erroneously believe that satin pillowcases and silk pillowcases are the same. They're not.
Pure silk is a fabric made from natural silk threads. Satin consists of man-made fibers and is woven into what's known as a satin weave.
However, this is where it can get a bit confusing. The charmeuse weave is technically a satin weave. That is, it's shiny on one side and matte on the other.
What's more—pure silk is 100% renewable, unlike satin. Satin is synthetic and not so great for the environment.
What about pillowcases made of cotton?
Although you may be in the market for a pure silk pillowcase, it's worth mentioning cotton pillowcases for a moment.
There is a type of cotton fabric that's called "sateen." It's a satin-like weave that's used to manufacture high-end luxury cotton pillowcases, sheets, and other accessories for your bed.
It has a bit of a shine to it, making it appear a bit like other types of luxury bedding materials, like silk. It's also thick and warm.
The drawbacks of sateen vs. pure silk pillowcases
Cotton sateen does have its drawbacks. Unlike the pure silk of a real mulberry silk pillowcase, sateen retains heat. Pure silk is breathable, which helps you regulate your body temperature while you sleep.
Cotton sateen is also not nearly as soft or shiny as silk, so it is not as luxurious.
5. The Color and Size of Your Pure Silk Pillowcases
Some people believe that pure silk is difficult to dye and can have a hard time holding its color over time. This belief may contribute to the satin vs cotton vs silk pillowcases debate.
With modern dying techniques, it is no longer difficult to dye silk. Despite this, it's sometimes challenging to find pure silk pillowcases in more than just a few colors.
The other challenge you may face is size. Some silk pillowcase manufacturers only carry queen- and king-sized pillowcases.
Pure silk pillowcases from Blissy come in a variety of colors and sizes
Blissy Silk Pillowcases and accessories come in an amazing variety of colors and styles.
As of the time of this writing, Blissy Silk Pillowcases come in 50 colors and patterns!
Blissy uses only the purest non-toxic dyes to create its pure silk pillowcases and silk accessories.
Additionally, Blissy carries standard-, queen-, and king-sized pillowcases, as well as youth- and toddler-sized pillowcases.
If you want to have leeway in matching your current bedroom décor and pillow sizes , pure silk pillowcases from Blissy make an excellent choice.
6. What to Know About OEKO-TEX® Standard 100 and Pure Silk
A pure silk pillowcase with an OEKO-TEX® Standard 100 designation represents the utmost in quality and safety for customers.
Created by a textile institute in Europe, this designation certifies that the silk pillowcases and sheets that you sleep on possess no harmful dyes or chemicals.
The OEKO-TEX® Standard 100 is a standard of excellence around the world. Covering four product classes, its testing is independent and therefore unbiased—so you know it can be trusted. It's also considered the gold standard in the textile industry.
Companies whose products receive a rating of Product Class 1 have received the highest mark possible for this rating system.
OEKO-TEX® Standard 100 and Blissy: Some practical implications
The Standard 100 designation means you are protected from exposure to any contaminants or harmful chemicals if you sleep on a pure silk pillowcase with this designation (like Blissy).
Pure silk products that receive the Product Class 1 have been tested for more than 400 different potentially hazardous substances.
The OEKO-TEX® Standard 100 ensures that it's safe for your baby to sleep on
Pure silk products that carry this distinction will not harm the skin nor hair. They're also safe and pure enough to use on babies' and toddlers' beds.
Pure silk with the Product Class 1 designation is naturally hypoallergenic, allowing those with even the most sensitive skin to enjoy the benefits of sleeping on pure silk.
When you're shopping for a pure silk pillowcase, look for this designation, particularly if you're buying silk pillowcases for your kids' rooms.
All Blissy Silk Pillowcases carry a Product Class 1 OEKO-TEX® Standard 100 designation.
7. 100% Pure Silk: Anti-Frizz and Anti-Aging Wonder Fabric
Are you plagued with dry skin? Wrinkles? What about frizz or bed head?
If there were ever a luxurious, yet practical hydrating, anti-frizz, and anti-aging remedy—it's having pure silk covering your pillow at night.
How is this possible? Simple. Pure silk contains the proteins sericin and fibroin which work wonders for the skin and hair.
These pure silk proteins are full of antioxidants—among their benefits are protection from the sun's UV rays, a boost in collagen, and some extra hydrating properties that help you combat dry skin and hair.
Sleeping on pure silk: It's a beauty routine dream come true
In short, contact with these pure silk proteins also helps to repair damage to your skin and hair. And because pure silk is smooth and friction free, it won't break your hair or pull on your skin.
The result is softer, smoother skin and more luxuriant hair.
Making the switch from a cotton or satin pillowcase to a pure silk pillowcase does more than just ensure that you get your beauty sleep at night.
This is something to keep in mind if you're investing in pure silk to boost your beauty routine.
Shopping for a Real Silk Pillowcase: Last Words of Advice
As you shop for pure silk pillowcases, you may be concerned that you're not getting real pure silk products.
You may have some additional concerns about other factors like momme count, silk grade, and whether or not the silk products you buy are OEKO-TEX® Standard 100.
The bottom line? When you're ready to shop for a pure silk pillowcase, be sure to look for 100% Pure Grade 6A Mulberry Silk on the label to ensure that you're getting the purest silk available. We hope the 7 points in this guide have answered all the big questions you have when it comes to shopping for pure silk pillowcases.
Blissy only sells 100% pure mulberry silk pillowcases. Our OEKO-TEX® Standard 100 silk pillowcases are of the highest quality.
Check out the Blissy website for our complete line of pure silk pillowcases and silk accessories.
- nytimes.com. (2020, November 4). Retrieved September 26, 2022, from https://www.nytimes.com/2020/11/04/science/spider-silk-web-self-assembly.html
- Shao, Z. (2002, August 15). Surprising strength of silkworm silk. Nature. Retrieved September 26, 2022, from https://www.nature.com/articles/418741a?error=cookies_not_supported&code=768643d4-99fe-44d2-83d9-f59b67b9d04a#:%7E:text=Main,5