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What Is a Good Fill Weight on a Down Comforter?

A third of our lives are spent sleeping, so why not invest in a comforter that enhances sleep quality and your comfort levels?

What Is a Good Fill Weight on a Down Comforter

There’s nothing quite as indulgent as snuggling up under a cozy [comforter](https://society6com/comforters?utm_source=SFGHG&utm_medium=referral&utm_campaign=2232) on a cold winter’s night.  Finding the right fill weight and fill power for your down comforter means you’ll be snug and warm in the depths of winter.


What is the Difference Between Fill Weight and Fill Power?

While fill power measures the space taken up by an ounce of down, fill weight measures the weight of down in ounces.  Generally, the higher the fill weight, the heavier the product.

However, this doesn’t mean you should opt for the heaviest available weight for those cold winter nights: a comforter with a high fill weight and low fill power will feel hefty, but will lack insulation. 


Finding the Right Comforter

Your ideal fill weight will vary depending on your climate and your preferences.  What kind of sleeper are you? Do you wear thick pyjamas or eschew nightwear altogether? Do you like a warm room, or prefer to sleep with the window open year-round? Are winters punishing where you live, or relatively mild?.

Comforters are sold by fill power.  Check the comforter’s label to find this figure, which relates to the quality of the down used in the item.

The higher the fill power, the better quality the down used.  A higher rating also indicates a fluffier, lighter and more breathable comforter.

* 400 fill power and under: this lower quality comforter is ideal for warmer climes
* 500-599: warm to cool conditions, a good all-round comfort level
* 600-799: a warmer option for colder climates
* 800 and up: this highly-insulated winter comforter will keep you warm through the coldest night


The Deal with Down

While a bird’s feathers help keep it dry and aloft, the soft, undercoat beneath this outer covering is light and fluffy, providing the insulation to protect birds through the winter months. 

Goose down is generally considered higher quality and better insulating than duck down.  Geese are wild, which means they’re mature when they’re caught, with larger down clusters.

Being farmed, ducks are often plucked before they’re fully mature, which can result in thinner down clusters that are more likely to break. 


Factoring in Thread Count

While most people know that a high thread count is all-important when buying sheets, it’s also something to look for in your hunt for the ideal comforter.  You probably know that a high thread count results in a tighter weave to the fabric, giving your sheets that all-important softness.

However, a high thread count has a practical application when applied to a comforter: it stops down from working its way out, lengthening your item’s life. 

When it comes to bedding down for a snug night’s sleep, the right comforter makes a big difference.  Working out which fill weight and fill power are right for you will make all the difference to your sleep quality and comfort levels.

About the Author

Benna Crawford has been a journalist and New York-based writer since 1997. Her work has appeared in USA Today, the San Francisco Chronicle, The New York Times, and in professional journals and trade publications. Crawford has a degree in theater, is a certified Prana Yoga instructor, and writes about fitness, performing and decorative arts, culture, sports, business and education .