What is flannel bedding? Qualities and alternatives

While we should always do everything we can to protect ourselves from the cold, this is particularly true in the coldest months of winter. But which type of bedding is best suited for this? Materials like flannel are often used in winter bedding because the fabric is soft and keeps you warm no matter what the temperature. In addition to being used to make beddings, flannel is also used to make clothing, especially underwear and flannel shirts for the summer.

So what is flannel bedding actually and why is your sleeping environment so important? How is flannel bedding made and what alternatives are there to it? Answers to these questions and other useful information are provided in this article.


Why is the right sleeping environment important in winter?

In the past it was often assumed that sleeping in cold rooms strengthened the immune system and made us hardier. Even today, many people don’t turn on their heating at night in winter. However, sleeping in too cold a room can actually have a negative effect on our health.

While we sleep, our body recharges its energy reserves. It’s for this reason that it’s especially important that the sleeping environment not harm the body in any way. Rooms which are too cold can create muscle tension in our body at night and also increase our risk of catching a cold. On the other hand, a bedroom that is too warm can dry out the mucous membranes in our skin in our orifices. If you wake up in the morning with a sore throat, this might be the reason why.


Your individual sleeping environment

An optimal sleeping environment has a temperature of 16 to 20 degrees and a humidity of 40 to 50%. However, this can be influenced by various factors. The feeling of warmth varies from person to person; disputes over this can lead to conflicts, especially for couples in the bedroom.

People with low blood pressure often complain that their hands or feet are too cold. Constricted blood vessels or inflammation can prevent blood from flowing through the arteries at an appropriate pressure. As a result, your limbs and extremities are not supplied with enough blood, which creates this cold feeling. For people with low blood pressure, the right sleeping environment at night is particularly important to prevent sleep disorders.

People with high blood pressure, on the other hand, are more sensitive to warmer temperatures than those whose blood pressure is healthy. A temperature which might be slightly too warm for someone with a healthy blood pressure can make a sufferer of blood pressure too warm, sweaty and uncomfortable.

The right bedding also plays an important role in finding the right sleeping environment. You should make sure that your bedding keeps you snug and warm, but that there is no heat build-up under the blanket. Breathable and moisture-regulating bedding achieves this.

Natural fabrics are best suited for summer and winter bedding, as they absorb the moisture your body releases in the form of sweat and transport it to the outside.


What is flannel bedding?

Many people swear by flannel bedding in winter. There are several reasons for this! Flannel bed sheets are made of cotton, which is more napped than other types of bedding. The napped surface provides a great deal of comfort, which is especially appreciated in winter.

Flannel bedding is napped by kneading or brushing either one or both sides. This slight deformation of the material makes the fabric soft and fluffy and provides a pleasant sensation of warmth on the skin. In German, the word for “flannel” literally means “beaver,” as these animals have extremely dense fur to keep them from getting cold in the water.

How is flannel bedding made?

Flannel can be made by using either twill weave or the plain weave. Originally, flannel bedding was made by using twill weave, though now the plain weave is more common.


The most commonly used weaves include the atlas weave, the plain weave, the satin weave and twill. Twill can easily be distinguished from other weaves by the structure of the weave. With twill, you can see diagonal lines that run across the top. This is achieved by the constant alternation of weft and warp threads. This results in sections that create the unique pattern in flannel bedding.

The plain weave

The warp and weft are crossed most closely together in plain weave. In the plain weave, warp threads are first stretched over a weaving frame loom, then weft thread is passed through this frame. The surface looks regular and the top and bottom sides are identical or even woven the same way.

As with twill, fabrics from the plain weave are very robust and resistant to abrasion and fraying. That is why they are often used to make the covers of comforters or pillows. In addition to flannel bedding, linen from renforcé or linon is also obtained by using the plain weave.

The qualities of flannel bedding As already described, flannel bedding is very soft and snuggly due to its brushed and napped surface. In winter, it keeps us insulated from the cold and provides a pleasant sleeping environment. However, flannel bedding can do even more, as the material has excellent moisture absorption capabilities, so that its user’s sweat doesn’t collect under the bedding.

Alternatives to flannel bedding

If you don't necessarily want to buy special bedding for the winter, but rather are looking for year-round bedding, the best choice is to choose from the following materials:

  • Jersey bedding: Jersey bedding is characterized by its lightness, elasticity and suppleness. Jersey is a breathable knitted fabric which is very easy to care for. This fabric is often used for summer bedding, but can also be used year-round.
  • Organic cotton satin bedding: Satin bedding is of particularly high quality and has a smooth and shiny top and a dull bottom. Satin bedding is also ideal for summer and winter, as it is also quite breathable.
  • Percale bedding: Percale is a densely-woven cotton fabric and is particularly durable. Percale is ideal for summer and winter bedding because the fabric is extremely breathable.


Bedding from Zizzz

At Zizzz, we offer percale and satin bedding. These are made from GOTS-certified organic cotton and can be used all year round. Additionally, we also offer pillowcases and fitted sheets made from the same materials.

Satin and percale bedding are the perfect addition to a comfortable bedding set. Our bedding is made in Europe to keep transport distances as short as possible and to cause less damage to the environment.