What Is a Top Sheet?

smiling child snuggled under top sheet

A top sheet is a bedding that is typically placed between the mattress and comforter, duvet, or blankets. It’s often flat and unadorned but can also be fitted with elastic around the edges to keep it in place.

A top sheet is not essential for every bed, but some people, especially millennials, prefer the additional layer of protection it provides against dirt and dust. It can also be used as a standalone blanket on warmer nights. Whether you use a top sheet or not is entirely up to personal preference.

Woman making her bed early in the morning at home

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How Do You Use a Top Sheet?

There’s no right or wrong way to use a top sheet, but there are definitely some advantages to using one. For starters, it can help keep your bed looking neater and more put-together, much more than a typical sheet set. Secondly, it can provide an extra layer of warmth on cold nights. And lastly, it can protect your duvet, cotton sheets, or comforter from body oils and dirt.

It’s really up to you! You can tuck it under the mattress or let it drape over the sides of the bed. You can also use it as a standalone blanket on warm nights. However you use it, just be sure to wash it regularly to keep it clean and fresh; otherwise, you may have problems with dust mites.

closeup of a hand putting a sheet on a bed

Benefits of Using a Top Sheet

Many people believe that using a top sheet is unnecessary, but there are actually several benefits to using one. First of all, top sheets help keep your bed looking neat and tidy. Whereas a flat sheet or a fitted sheet may require some time and effort to smooth out. Additionally, top sheets provide an extra layer of warmth on cold nights. If you tend to sleep hot, you can just remove the top sheet, but having the extra layer can make a big difference if you get cold easily. Finally, using a top sheet can prolong the life of your duvet cover, linen sheets, flat sheets, or blanket. The built-up body oils and sweat from not using a top sheet will eventually break down the fabric, but you can keep your bedding looking fresh for much longer if you use a top sheet. So next time you’re making up your bed, don’t forget the top sheet!

Different Ways To Fold a Top Sheet

You may think that there is only one way to fold a top sheet, but there are several different ways to do it in reality. The most important thing is to make sure that the sheet is clean and free of wrinkles. Once you have done that, you can fold the sheet in a number of different ways. One popular method is to fold the sheet half lengthwise and then in half again. This creates a long, thin rectangle that can be easily tucked under a duvet cover or comforter. Another option is to fold the sheet into thirds widthwise and then roll it up tightly from one end to the other. This creates a long, thin roll that is easy to store and transport. Or, for a more creative approach, you could try folding the sheet into a series of smaller squares or triangles. This gives your bed a unique and eye-catching look, especially if you have colors and fabrics on your pillowcase. Whichever way you choose to fold your top sheet, the important thing is to enjoy the process and let your creativity flow.

arms holding a stack of folded sheets

Why Top Sheets Are a Necessary Part of Your Bedroom Design

A top sheet is like the frosting on a cupcake: the finishing touch pulls the whole design together. And just like there’s no such thing as too much frosting, there’s no such thing as too many top sheets. Plus, it provides a clean surface to curl up on when you’re not ready to commit to making the bed. Whether you choose crisp white cotton or a colorful patterned sheet, a top sheet is necessary for your bedding design. So go ahead and pile on the frosting — er, top sheets — and enjoy a cozy night’s sleep.

How To Care for Your Top Sheet

The great thing about top sheets is that they are easily removable and washable. Wash your top sheet at least once a week to keep it fresh and wrinkle free.

If you have a particularly delicate top sheet, you may want to wash it by hand instead of in the machine. When you’re putting your top sheet back on the bed, be sure to smooth out any wrinkles to lie flat against the comforter.

Your top sheet can last for many years with a bit of care. Enjoy snuggling under your favorite top sheet — it’s sure to add an extra layer of warmth and comfort to your bed!

woman lofting a top sheet into the air as she makes a bed

How To Choose the Right Top Sheet for Your Bed

When it comes to choosing the right top sheet for your bed, there are a few things to keep in mind. First, consider the climate you live in. If you live in a warm climate, you’ll want to choose a lightweight fabric like cotton or linen sheets. If you live in cooler weather, you may want to opt for a heavier fabric like flannel.

Second, think about the type of comforter, pillow, or duvet cover you’ll be using. You can get away with a more patterned or colorful top sheet if you have a simple, solid-colored comforter. However, if your comforter is already busy or brightly colored, you’ll want to choose a more subdued top sheet.

Finally, select a top sheet that’s the right size for your bed. You don’t want it to be too small or too big — just right! With these guidelines in mind, you’re sure to find the perfect top sheet for your bed.

closeup on a double bed with 2 pillows and white bedding

Top Sheet Tips and Tricks

As any top sheet connoisseur knows, there’s more to this essential bedding item than meets the eye. Though often overlooked, the right top sheet can make all the difference in achieving a stylish, pulled-together look. Here are a few tips and tricks for making the most of your top sheet:

Type of Material

Choose a material that complements your comforter. If you have a cotton or linen comforter, opt for a cover made from the same material. This will give your bed a cohesive look.


Consider using a top sheet as a layering piece. If you’re looking to add another layer of warmth to your bed, consider using a top sheet as a duvet cover and pillow combo. Simply drape it over your comforter and secure it with clips or pins.

Color and Patterns

Use your top sheet to add color or pattern to your bed. If you have a solid-colored comforter, use your top sheet to introduce another hue or print into the mix. Or, if you’re feeling really bold, try mixing and matching patterns for an eclectic look, even with the fitted sheet.

With these tips in mind, you’ll be sure to make the most of your top sheet — and take your bedroom style to new.

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stack of colorful folded sheets

What Is a Top Sheet Conclusion

While a top sheet may not be an essential for everyone, it can certainly add extra comfort and protection to your bedding set-up. If you’re looking for a way to make your bedroom feel just a little bit more luxurious, or want to give yourself an extra layer of warmth on cold winter nights, consider using a top sheet. And if you’re still undecided, why not try out both options and see which one you like best?

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