What is the difference between silk and satin?

What exactly is the difference between silk and satin? This is a question we regularly hear from our customers. And that comes as no surprise because the two are often confused. Read on below to find out why!

1. Satin is not a material but a weaving technique

Despite what many people think, satin, unlike silk, is not a material. Satin is a weaving technique, so in principle any material can be woven like satin. The satin weaving technique consists of weaving the yarns very close together, creating a soft and shiny fabric.

The brands in our shop also use long fibres in their products. The longer the fibres, the better the quality, and the stronger and softer the fabric will eventually be. Cheaper fabrics are made with short fibres. They feel rougher as you have many ends, and each end of a fibre feels rough.

Keep in mind, however, that nowadays 'satin' often refers to synthetic polyester!

So when you buy a 'satin pillowcase', for example, be careful as it may be a pillowcase made of synthetic polyester that has satin weave. When using 'satin' bed linen, always check whether it is made of silk, cotton sateen or polyester.

Tip: look at the label with the washing instructions on the inside. It should always show whether it is 100% polyester, 100% cotton or 100% silk! The price will of course also quickly reveal whether it is real silk you have in your hands. If a 'silky soft pillowcase' is sold for 20 euro then you can be almost certain that it is polyester.

2. Silk is a material

Silk is a natural material from the silkworm. It takes about 5 days for the silkworm to spin a cocoon with silk thread. Only the best silk cocoons are used - selected by size and colour - and soaked in hot water. This dissolves the binding substance between the silk threads and allows for the threads to be unrolled from the cocoon. The unravelling of the cocoons is done by hand, breaking the fewest threads possible, which extends the lifespan of your silk pillowcase or duvet cover.

At our shop we offer silk pillow cases and duvet covers by Emperior Silk or Mikmax, which are made of 100% mulberry silk. Discover all the advantages of sleeping on a silk pillowcase here!

These are the main differences between a 100% natural product like silk and a synthetic material like polyester:

  • Polyester is static and flammable.
  • Unlike silk, polyester absorbs little or no moisture, making your bedding feel wetter when perspiring.
  • A synthetic material such as polyester makes you feel very hot at night, while silk is breathable and ensures you feel cool in summer and warm in winter.

Do you have any questions or would you like more information about our natural silk or cotton sateen bedding? Don’t hesitate to contact us. We will be happy to help you!