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How to Pick a Good Duvet Cover

Updated on March 11, 2014

What is a Duvet Cover and Why do I Need One?

 Simply put, a duvet cover is like a massive pillowcase for your fluffy down comforter. Duvet covers come in all sorts of sizes, colors and textures, which is great for anyone who wants to add color to their bedroom, rather than sticking with the neutral white that most down comforters come in.

A duvet cover is also super handy when it comes to keeping your precious and probably pricey down comforter clean. Because most down comforters are dry-clean only it can be an expensive proposition to keep one clean for any length of time, which is why a duvet cover is a neat, and crucial investment for down comforter lovers. Bed looking dirty? Simply yank off the duvet cover and throw it in the wash, and your bed will be as a Snuggles commercial, complete with bouncing bears and mountain springs.

However, you shouldn't venture into the wilderness of shopping alone! Here are some tips to help you choose a duvet cover that is not too hard, not too soft, but just right.

Tips for Choosing a Duvet Cover

1. Measure your down comforter: While down comforters and duvet covers do come in standard sizes such as "King", "Queen" and "Full", many down comforters seem to have a mind of their own when it comes to standard dimensions. Lay your down comforter flat and use a measuring tape to get its true dimensions. Then, compare these to the dimensions listed on the packaging or the online description. If they match or are close (with the duvet measurements being a bit larger) then you may have a winner!

2. Know about thread count: While thread count may be more important in sheets, you still don't want a duvet cover that feels like a gunny sack. The basic principle behind thread count is the higher the number, the softer the duvet cover. Thus, a 400 thread count duvet cover will be much softer than a 200 thread count duvet cover. Of course, there are also faux-suede duvet covers, silk duvet covers, and a whole host of other materials to choose from besides cotton, so don't feel hemmed in!

3. Check washability: The whole point of having a duvet cover is to have an easy to launder cover for your not so easily washed down comforter. Buying a tricky to wash duvet cover totally defeats this purpose. Cotton is machine washable and dryable, as are synthetics like polyester. Make sure your duvet cover is machine washable and preferably machine dryable before purchasing.

Tips for Using Your Duvet Cover

So, you've taken the plunge and invested in a duvet cover, but perhaps the two of you are still learning how to be friends? Never fear, your tenuous relationship will soon blossom! Here are some tips to help you learn to love life with your duvet cover.

1. Wash your duvet cover inside out: This will help preserve and embroidery or fancy work, or even just color on the outside of your duvet cover.

2. Fluff and adjust your down comforter regularly: One of the few unfortunate aspects of a duvet cover is that is has no way to anchor the down comforter inside of it, so sometimes the down comforter slides down or bunches up inside the duvet cover. Simply reach inside the duvet, align the corners, then fluff the whole contraption while holding the corners tight. Everything should readjust perfectly, and your down comforter will be lighter and fluffier at night to boot.

3. Learn the tricks of putting on a duvet cover: Putting a duvet cover over your down comforter can be a tricky proposition, and there are about as many tips and tricks as there are homeopathic cures for the common cold. One favorite includes stuffing the duvet cover like a pillow. I like this best. I simply tug each corner of the down comforter into place, and then shake everything until it distributes evenly. For the more precise, another favorite method involves laying the duvet cover inside-out next to the down comforter on the floor, then slowly pulling it right side out around the down comforter. Try new methods and do whatever works best for you!


Duvet covers can be a convenient way to save wear and tear on your down comforter, and a fun way to decorate your bedroom. Don't forget to let us know if you have any special tips for duvets covers too, in the comments section below, and have fun shopping!

Psst, need a down comforter to go in that duvet cover? Check out my Hub on Tips for Picking Out a Down Comforter.


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    • profile image

      Gilbert 2 years ago

      I have a comforter with only one duvet cover and it's so inconvient each time I wash it.

      Thanks for sharing these useful tips :)

    • MrSpock profile image

      MrSpock 8 years ago

      Very good to know.

    • CennyWenny profile image

      CennyWenny 8 years ago from Washington

      Wildfremd-Thanks for the link! I like the technique in the above video but you are right, the angle is a bit weird.

    • wildfremd profile image

      wildfremd 8 years ago from Portland, Oregon

      Great hub, but the video is a little hard to see. It's at a weird angle. I found a website that shows a better angle if you're interested.... :)