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What Are the Pros and Cons of Using a Silk Pillow Case?

By Bethany Keene
Updated: May 23, 2024

Many people choose to use a silk pillow case to sleep on, believing that it is better for the skin and hair, as well as less allergy-inducing than some other fabrics. Some of these claims are disputed, but there is really no harm in trying a silk case to see if it is enjoyable to sleep on. If not, then no harm has been done. In general, there are few cons cited when using silk bedding except the fact that it is pricier than cotton bedding, and requires more careful washing, at least initially.

There are a few pros cited over and over from proponents of sleeping on a silk pillow case. The first is that a silk pillow case is less likely to "bunch up," leading to those pillow case creases that many people experience when waking in the morning. This could potentially prevent wrinkles from forming; in addition, some say that using a silk case also prevents nighttime moisturizer from rubbing off, allowing it to better penetrate the skin.

Others also say that sleeping on silk is better for the hair because it does not rub on the pillowcase, becoming tangled. This may help to prevent frizz, or a greasy scalp. Some also argue that silk pillow cases contain natural amino acids, which are beneficial when they are in direct contact with the skin, though others say this makes no difference. People with dermatitis do sometimes find that sleeping on a silk case helps with their condition.

Silk bedding is also often called a less attractive type of bedding to dust mites, mold, or other allergens. This means that asthma or allergy sufferers often choose silk bedding to help them breathe easier at night. Again, some experts debate this fact, but if it seems to be helpful there is no reason not to give it a shot. Finally, some people just enjoy the feeling of sleeping on a silk pillow case, because it is smoother than cotton, and tends to stay cooler throughout year. This is a personal preference, however.

There are few cons to using a silk pillow case if individuals choose to do so. Silk bedding is typically more expensive to purchase, particularly high-quality silk that will hold up over time. It also requires a little extra time to care for it, as some silk bedding requires hand washing for the first few times. After that it can generally be run through the washing machine on the delicate cycle.

PillowGuide is dedicated to providing accurate and trustworthy information. We carefully select reputable sources and employ a rigorous fact-checking process to maintain the highest standards. To learn more about our commitment to accuracy, read our editorial process.
Discussion Comments
By ZipLine — On Aug 19, 2014

I can't sleep on a silk pillow case. I hate it. It's too slippery and it makes me very hot at night. I wake up sweating and feeling very hot. I've switched back to my cotton pillow case. Even if cotton is bad for skin, not getting proper sleep is bad for skin too!

By donasmrs — On Aug 18, 2014

@serenesurface-- Yes, silk pillow cases are wonderful for hair. I used to wake up with super frizzy, messy hair in the morning. It was scary to look in the mirror. Since switching to silk pillow cases, there is a considerable difference. My hair is not frizzy and actually looks very neat when I wake up. I think it makes my hair shiny too which is a bonus. I don't think I'm going to switch to any other type of pillow case.

The only downside in my opinion is the cost. These do cost more than standard cotton pillow cases. But I think it's definitely worth it because it means that I have to spend less time on my hair in the morning and less hair products too.

By serenesurface — On Aug 18, 2014

I just switched to silk pillow cases because I read so much about its benefits for skin. I'm trying to prevent wrinkles and a friend mentioned that using a silk pillow case is an easy way to do that. I'm not sure if it truly works. It will probably take a long time to see its effects. But I've been sleeping on them for a few days and I really like how soft they are. My hair is also not tangled when I wake up, so I can definitely vouch for that benefit.

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