If there was a single jacket or pair of shoes that you would be spending one-third of your entire lifetime wearing, chances are you’d be willing to invest in some of the very best products available. Yet, despite the fact the average person spends roughly one-third of their life asleep or in bed, our mattress and bedding situation gets decidedly little attention considering the consistency and immense scope of its use. So, with this in mind, we’re starting with one of the most crucial bedding elements of all: the blanket.
While there is a diverse and plentiful market brimming with options, few if any types provide more benefits than weighted blankets — as repeatedly evidenced by numerous peer-reviewed studies and other well-documented research. Unfortunately, the proven efficacy of weighted blankets has prompted a slew of unscrupulous outfits to attempt to cash-in on the trend with cheap, less-effective imitation offerings that can actually make it harder to sleep. With proper sleep being so important to one’s physical, mental, and overall health — and well-made weighted blankets affording several clearcut benefits — we’ve put in the legwork, poring through articles, press releases, and our old archives to bring you this guide to the best weighted blankets.
The Science Behind Heavy Bedding
The Primary Benefits Of Weighted Blankets
There’s very little debate as to the science surrounding the efficacy of weighted blankets, and as the segment has picked up steam and grown in popularity over the years, the scientific community has increasingly focused time and resources on exploring this steadily emerging market. And while there are occasional outliers, the majority of published and peer-reviewed studies point to numerous clear cut, objective benefits, both physiologically and psychologically.
A Racing Mind: One of the most commonly-cited selling-points of weighted blankets is their ability to reduce anxiety and calm their user. This is because weighted blankets have been shown to slow down and decrease nervous system activity while you sleep, which in turn helps to mitigate the anxiety or hyperactivity that an overly active nervous system can cause. Furthermore, weighted blankets also slow your heart rate, which bolsters this effect.
In addition to demonstrating to lessen some of the symptoms associated with Restless Leg Syndrome, weighted blankets have even been used to help treat individuals suffering from PTSD. The calming effect weighted blankets provide has also been proven to work on our four-legged dog friends, as well as children, who can also hugely benefit from the qualities afforded by weighted blankets. And, while it’s admittedly a bit harder to objectively measure, weighted blankets are largely believed to increase one’s overall feeling of security.
A Solid Night’s Rest: Regardless as to whether or not you suffer from anxiety, weighted blankets help their users fall asleep faster, stay asleep longer, and get a more restful night’s sleep in the process. This is for several reasons. Weighted blankets have been shown to increase the amounts of serotonin and melatonin released by the brain — vital chemicals in regulating our sleep cycles – while decreasing cortisol output. Weighted blankets also have the ability to lessen movement during sleep, which is another aspect that results in a generally most restful slumber.
Sleep and rest obviously play enormous roles in our overall health and happiness, and weighted blankets being able to consistently and reliably improve these areas can have profound results. After all, weighted blankets’ ability to afford an overall better night’s sleep has literally countless benefits in day-to-day life, from improved social interactions and memory to better athletic performance and coordination.
Easy Sleeping Checklist
What To Consider When Buying A Weighted Blanket
Below is a condensed rundown on what areas to take into consideration when shopping for a new weighted blanket.
Weighted blankets are primarily comprised of three components: the outer material; the insulation or filling; and the weighted element. While the first two of these wildly vary — like with regular unweighted blankets – beads made from glass are currently the established standard amongst the lion’s share of reputable weighted blanket purveyors. And, while this is technically more construction than materials, it’s well worth looking into the stitching or other aspects of how a blanket was put together.
Dimensions: Like any type of normal blanket you might buy, weighted items come in all manner of shapes and sizes, from small throw-style items to California King-sized mattress covering spreads. This element should primarily be guided by the size of the bed that you’re using, though if you’re buying a weighted blanket for a couch, we’d recommend something in sizes twin or full.
Warmth: Again, just like with normal blankets, weighted blankets are available in different thicknesses and materials that make for warmer or colder overall offerings. They also have a slew of breathable and/or cooling weighted blankets that are specifically designed for use in warmer climates or during the summer months.
Weight: Many companies offer blankets in the same dimensions with different weights. The general rule of thumb is you want to purchase a weighted blanket that tips the scales at as close to 10% of your weight as possible. This means if you weigh 250lbs, you’d want a 25lb blanket.
Special Features: While pretty much every weighted blanket will perform the same basic function, there are some items that stand out due to their unique features. This includes smart-tech-integrated elements, blankets that are reversible and/or dual-sided, and weighted blankets that boast interesting woven constructions, just to name a few.
WONAP Cooling Weighted Blanket
Offered in 7, 10, 12, 15, 17, 20, 25, and 30lb weights and in a plethora of dimensions, the WONAP weighted blanket is made from bamboo rayon: a modern Bambusoideae-derived regenerated cellulose fiber that’s extremely soft and breathable. The bamboo fabric is mated to an inner ultra-soft cotton liner and weighted via hypoallergenic and odorless premium glass beads. The blanket is equipped with a 4” x 4” quilted construction that separates the beads, distributing weight evenly and enabling the blanket to be completely silent. The WONAP blanket is also backed by a 100% customer satisfaction guarantee.
The Calm Blanket presents a thoroughly modern and premium take on the weighted blanket, calling on an advanced seven-layer construction that’s been engineered to optimize cooling and comfort. Sold in four weights — 5, 12, 18, and 20lbs – the Calm Blanket is made from a highly breathable and moisture-wicking Bamboo Viscose (aka Bamboo rayon) that makes it perfect for year-round use. The particular bamboo-sourced fabric used in the Calm Blanket is extraordinarily soft-to-the-touch, too. Furthermore, this blanket even benefits from precision computer-guided sewing, and is 100% machine washable, making maintenance a breeze.
Helix Weighted Blanket
Helix’s highly-awarded weighted blanket takes a unique approach to the segment with a dual-construction item with reversible sides. The Helix blanket is comprised of a machine-washable outer cover with fleece on one side and a sheared microfiber on the other, as well as an inner all-cotton blanket housing its fine-grade glass beads. Sold in a trio of weight options (10, 15, and 20lbs), the Helix weighted blanket also manages to keep weight evenly distributed without the use of visible seems or external stitch patterns by using an internal grid.
The Layla weighted blanket is another thoroughly-calculated item that’s easily recognized by its attractive octagonal stitch pattern. Like the Helix, the Layla blanket is reversible, with one side featuring a soft 300 thread-count cotton and the other adorned in a synthetic mink-like faux fur. The Layla further distinguishes itself from other weighted blankets on the market via its use of micro-glass beads, which are markedly smaller and allow for superior weight distribution, as well as an overall more comfortable piece of bedding. And, in addition to giving customers what appears to be an industry-leading 120-day money-back guarantee, the company stands behind its product with a generous five-year warranty.
Purple x Gravity Weighted Blanket
Since emerging onto the scene in late 2015 following a wildly-successful Kickstarter campaign, Purple has been disrupting the traditional mattress and bedding sector, applying modern technologies and materials to the segment (including its signature “hyper-elastic polymer”). And the California company has now applied this same cutting-edge approach to the weighted blanket, partnering with Gravity to produce a hypoallergenic, dual-sided 35lb blanket designed for couples. Machine washable, the Purple X Gravity blanket features a reversible design with a cooling tech fabric opposite a faux mink fur. Purple also offers this blanket in a trio of mattress sizes, half-a-dozen different colors, and both lightweight and all-season versions.
Baloo Weighted Blanket
The Baloo Weighted Blanket is another premium offering that’s manufactured with a focus on environmental sustainability. Sized to perfectly fit atop a queen-sized mattress and sold in 15 and 20lb weights (plus a 12lb twin-sized/throw version), the Baloo is made from high-end and extremely breathable cotton that’s certified by the Oeko-Tex 100 Standard. Backed by a money-back guarantee, this blanket employs a double-quilted stitching configuration, keeping the weighted elements in place and ensuring a lifetime of use. The Baloo is also surprisingly easy to clean, being washer and (low heat) dryer-safe.
While we’re typically much more concerned with rides, EDC, and outdoor gear then we are bedding and home goods, we’ve been big fans of the Gravity Blanket since its debut in 2017. This blanket boasts an exterior cover made from an ultra-soft micro-fleece, along with an inner layer with glass beads that are securely kept in place by elastic-button snaps, ties, and an internal gridded stitch-pattern. The latest version of the Gravity Blanket also replaces the original model’s high-density polyester pellets with all-natural glass beads, and its duvet cover is machine washable (though the internal weighted blanket still has to be washed by hand).
Yaasa Weighted Blanket
Winner of Wired’s “Best Overall Weighted Blanket,” the Yaasa is another unique high-end offering comprised of a soft 100% cotton cover and a polypropylene fiber fill. What primarily separates the Yassa, however, is its idiosyncratic woven construction, which is produced through each blanket being entirely hand-woven, and results in unparalleled breathability. More so than other weighted blankets, (not including the next entry on this list) this woven construction discreetly conceals the blanket’s weighted nature, too, making it an ideal candidate to use as a throw on the couch. Sold in either grey or cream and available in 15 and 20lb versions, Yaasa blankets are protected by a one year warranty.
Bearaby Tree Napper
Bearaby’s Tree Napper combines classic homemade-style blankets with modern materials. Sold in three sizes/weights, the Tree Napper is composed of an organic cotton and spandex combination that’s weighted with integrated TENCEL Lyocell: a biodegradable material made from recycled wood pulp that uses ten-times less water to manufacture than traditional fibers. The use of TENCEL — with accounts for 50% of the blanket’s construction — eliminates the need to use plastic pellets or glass beads to weigh the blanket. Sold in three sizes and five different vibrant color options, this artisan-made blanket is also entirely knit by hand, resulting in each unit boasting unique imperfections and ever-so-slightly varying dimensions.
Sunday Citizen Crystal Weighted Blanket
Once upon a time, a luxury hotel proprietor was looking to buy new bedding for his building’s plush rooms. Unsatisfied with the existing market, he called on a textile engineer to custom-produce the ultimate in luxury bedding, eventually resulting in the creation of Sunday Citizen. Today, the luxury brand makes some of the nicest high-end throws comforters, and blankets — including those of the weighted variety. Boasting the same premium feel as the rest of the brand’s wares, the Crystal Weighted Blanket consists of a removable microfiber exterior housing a polyester fill and thousands of tiny amethyst and quartz crystals to provide weight in lieu of glass beads.
Saatva Organic Weighted Blanket
The Saatva is another premium take on a weighted blanket that’s responsibly and ethically manufactured from environmentally-friendly and sustainable materials. Outfitted with a diamond-quilted stitch pattern, this blanket boasts evenly-distrusted all-natural glass beads cloaked in a plush velvet that’s Global Organic Textile Standard-certified, meaning it’s colored with nontoxic dyes, devoid of any and all toxic chemicals, composed of more than 95% organic fiber, and meets numerous stringent responsible social and environmental standards. Additionally, the Saatva Weighted Blanket is manufactured in a Fair Trade certified factory. And, while the velvet construction makes for an exceptionally soft piece of bedding, it is worth noting that the Saatva Weighted Blanket isn’t machine washable and has to be dry-cleaned.
On the outside, the chiliBLANKET might look like your average bedspread, though underneath its square-knit poly-fleece blend cover lies a cutting-edge system of tubes that circulate electronically-chilled water. Touted as the world’s first hydro-cooled blanket, the weighted blanket element connects to a separate control unit, as does the supplementary chiliPAD, which can be paired with the high-tech gadget. For users that live in regions where it consistently gets unpleasantly hot and humid during the summer months, this water-cooled blanket can save untold amounts on your electricity bill as it hugely negates the need for AC. Time will tell, but this very well may be the future of bedding.
The 15 Best Sleep Accessories
Looking for further offerings to lead to a better night’s rest? Then be sure to check out our guide to the best sleep accessories currently on the market.
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