Percale vs Sateen Sheets – What’s the difference?

Percale vs Sateen Sheets – What’s the difference?

August 19, 2022


It’s time. You need new sheets for your bed, but don’t know how to make sense of all the different options or what thread count to buy. Relax! Allswell has your back (or your side, if that’s how you sleep). We’ll explain the difference between percale and sateen sheets and give you the pros and cons of each, so you’ll know how to make a bed that's perfect for you.

Caroline Contreras (@miss_rizos) sleeps happy with her Allswell bedding!

Percale vs Sateen: At a Glance

Fun fact: Percale and sateen are not different types of fabric!

The main difference between them is actually in the weave of the fabric, which lends each its own look, feel, and durability.

So while percale and sateen sheets are most commonly made of cotton, you’ll find options made from other fibers like polyester, rayon, bamboo, or lyocell. Read on for more info on these differences, and find out which is better for you and your mattress.

Indigo blue Allswell percale sheets

What are Percale Sheets?

Percale (pronounced “per-kale”) sheets are woven in a one-over-one-under pattern and have a classic look and feel. Cool and crisp with a smooth, matte finish, these breathable sheets are an excellent choice for any bed, but are especially good for hot sleepers and keeping your bed cool in warmer weather. They also tend to wear well, getting softer with each wash. Because they tend to wrinkle more than sateen sheets, some people prefer to iron them for a crisp finish.

Percale sheets can be made from a variety of materials, including synthetic fibers, but Alswell’s percale sheets are made from 100% organic cotton and start at just $68 for a complete sheet set, which includes a flat sheet, fitted sheet, and pillow cases. Ooh la la!

Pros of Percale Sheets:

  • Classic comfort
  • Crisp and cool to the touch
  • Lightweight and breathable
  • Better for hot sleepers and warmer temperatures
  • Highly durable and long-lasting
  • Gets softer with use and washing

Cons of Percale Sheets:

  • May wrinkle/require ironing
  • Not as soft as sateen initially


Allswell blush sateen sheets

What are Sateen sheets?

Sateen sheets are exactly as they sound—silky smooth, with a subtle sheen thanks to a one-under-three or four-over weave. They are slightly thicker than percale sheets, keeping you warm and cozy even in cooler temperatures. With that in mind, these sheets are better for cool sleepers. The buttery-soft fabric gives your bedding a luxurious feel, and is also less prone to wrinkles so you never have to iron.

While sateen sheets can be made from cotton or synthetic fibers, Allswell’s sateen sheets are made from 100% organic cotton and start at just $78 for a complete sheet set, which includes a flat sheet, fitted sheet, and pillow cases.

Pros of Sateen Sheets:

  • Buttery, silky soft texture
  • Subtle shine
  • Thick and luxurious feel
  • Better for cool sleepers and cooler temperatures
  • Less prone to wrinkles

Cons of Sateen Sheets:

  • Not as durable as percale (may pill after prolonged use)
  • May retain heat


So, which sheet is right for you?

At the end of the day, the difference is in the weave. Percale sheets have a crisp, classic feel with a smooth finish and are lightweight and breathable, making them great for warmer months or sleepers who get hot. Sateen sheets are heavier and warmer, but also silky smooth with a slight sheen and are great for cooler months. Both types can be made from organic and synthetic fibers, but Allswell sheets are only made from 100% organic cotton. Whichever you choose, get ready to sleep on the personalized bed of your dreams.

Ready to get your sheets together?


Or learn more about our bedding and why we think it's pretty great.




The information provided in this blog article is for educational purposes only and does not substitute for the advice of a medical professional.