Best Bed Sheets for College Dorms

By Katie Dyal

Aug 31st, 2021

When you or your child is heading off to college for the first time, you want to create a space that feels like home. Part of that involves decorating your bed, and since most college dorms supply students with twin XL mattresses, it’s likely that you’ll need to buy an entire new bedding set.

We’re here to make that process simple for you. Keep reading to find out our top picks for the best bed sheets for college and learn what to consider when shopping for your own sheet set for your dorm.


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The Best Bed Sheets for College

casper supima sheets

Casper Cool Supima Sheets

Best Cooling Sheets for College Beds

A name might not tell the whole story, but it can be a good place to start. Casper Cool Supima Sheets are 100% Supima cotton woven from extra long-staple fibers. Some of the coolest, most breathable bedding comes from these kinds of high-quality fibers.

 

In addition to coolness, these sheets have a soft, satiny finish. You can keep it that way by machine-washing them in cold water on a gentle cycle and tumble drying on low heat. (Because what college student has time for hand-washing their sheets?)

 

Pros:

  • Coolness and breathability
  • Soft, sleek feel

Cons:

  • More expensive than some other sheets
  • Cotton is prone to wrinkling (attention, military school cadets!)
tuft and needle sheets 3

Tuft & Needle Jersey Sheet Set

Best Year-Round Sheets for College Beds

If your dorm room or off-campus apartment is in the Goldilocks zone (not too hot, not too cold, but just right), you probably don’t need sheets for every season. The Tuft & Needle Jersey Sheet Set might offer a year-round solution.

 

The 50/50 cotton-lyocell blend offers a mixture of warming properties and breathability. Hypothetically, you could go sheets-only in spring and summer and simply add a blanket when the weather gets cooler. They’re also reasonably priced and easy to care for—both important considerations for the typical college student.

 

Pros:

  • Materials and construction lend themselves to year-round use
  • Affordable, but doesn’t look like a budget buy

Cons:

  • Not ideal for extreme heat or cold
  • Doesn’t have the luxury feel of all-cotton
purple sheets

Purple Sheets

Best Cheap Sheets for College Beds

“Affordable” or “inexpensive” might be the better adjective here, since Purple Sheets probably won’t feel like a compromise on quality at all. Many customer reviews give these sheets high marks for comfort, especially when it comes to cooling.

 

Bamboo-derived fibers like those used in Purple Sheets aren’t just eco-friendly—they’re also known for being breathable and moisture-resistant. The sheets also include spandex, which adds flexibility to help you avoid that tight, restricted feeling. All in all, Purple Sheets stack up as a viable alternative to premium-priced luxury brands.

 

Pros:

  • More affordable than many eco-friendly luxury sheets
  • Materials promote cooling and flexibility

Cons:

  • Doesn’t offer the cozier feel of flannel
  • Might be prone to pilling
brooklinen sheet set

Brooklinen Classic Core Sheet Set

Most Eco-Friendly Sheets for College Beds

Here’s another environmental acronym to consider when you’re outfitting your dorm bedroom: OEKO-TEX. Brooklinen Classic Core Sheet Sets are OEKO-TEX Certified, which means they meet the highest standards for environmentally friendly production in the textile and clothing industry.

 

You won’t find any harmful chemicals, but you will find 100% long-staple cotton in a 270-thread count percale weave that promotes breathability and coolness. These sheets also have a crisp feel comparable to a freshly made hotel bed. And to make laundry day easier, they’re machine-washable.

 

Pros:

  • Indisputable eco-friendly pedigree
  • Cool, crisp, and breathable

Cons:

  • Prone to wrinkling
  • Free shipping not available in Alaska and Hawaii

How to Find the Best Bed Sheets for College Dorm Rooms

When you’re on the hunt for the best bed sheets for college, you’re probably looking for an option that’s low-maintenance, made to last, and comfortable. Basically, you’ll want a no-frills set that still hits the right marks. Just make sure you consider all of these factors in order to find your perfect set.

Size

Have you been told to look for extra long twin sheets? Many dorm mattresses require twin XL sheets, but it is best to check before you buy. You may even need to measure the mattress in person first before shopping and picking the right sheets for you. In addition to size, consider the array of materials you can choose from as well.

Material

  • Cotton: soft and fluffy; breathable and cool.
  • Flannel: medium weight and fuzzy, keeping you cozy in the winter.
  • Silk: smooth and soft with little elasticity.
  • Microfiber: thin but strong and exceptionally smooth and comfortable.
  • Bamboo: feels like silk or very soft cotton; moisture absorbent and quick drying.
  • Jersey:  simple knit that is drapey or soft and stretchy.
  • Sateen: heavier, smoother finish that feels like silk while keeping your warm.

Look for a material that is suitable for all kinds of weather, uber-comfortable, and made to last; you’ll want to land on a set that’s versatile and sturdy. What your sheets are made out of will tell you all about feel and durability.

Thread Count

What does thread count refer to, and how do you choose the right one based on your preferences and budget as a college student? Thread count refers to the number of horizontal and vertical threads per square inch. 

Related: Does thread count in sheets matter? 

The higher the thread count, the softer the sheets. Sheets with higher thread count last longer and even become softer over time. A good thread count to shoot for is between 200 to 800, even though the count can go as high as 1000. As a college student on a budget, you should be able to find affordable sheets in the 200 to 800 range.

Care

When you’re in college, you don’t have the time, space, or resources to have a sheet set that’s difficult to take care of. Find a machine-washable option so that you can hit the books instead of the dry cleaners.

Style

Dorm rooms are notoriously small spaces, meaning that you won’t have a lot of opportunities to show off your personality or make your home your own. The sheets on your bed are one of the few ways in which you can add flair; take advantage of this fact and pick a set that reflects your style.

Frequently Asked Questions

Why does the word “hypoallergenic” come up often in describing sheet sets targeted towards college students?

It’s no one’s favorite topic, but the fact of the matter is that you’ll need to keep your sleep space extra safe in a college environment. Dormitories are known to be very crowded, containing many people and their living quarters. Because of this, any bug problem, minor infestation, or mold issue can turn into a disaster very quickly.

You may be very responsible when it comes to keeping your side of the street clean, but your neighbor or roommate may not be. Using hypoallergenic sheets is an effortless way to keep allergens, dust mites, bed bugs, and mold away from you. Choose antimicrobial bedding and you’ll shoo harm away from your safe haven.

How do you prevent your sheets from pilling? 

In order to prevent your sheets from pilling, avoid extreme temperatures when washing your sheets. Washing your sheets on “tap cold, cold, or cool” temperatures will prevent your sheets from pilling. You should also avoid drying your sheets on an extremely hot setting. A delicate cycle will ensure dryness and protect them from pilling or shrinking. Lastly, using a mild detergent can prevent pilling as well.

Is it okay to have one pair of bed sheets? 

We recommend having at least two sets of bed sheets on hand so you can use one while the other is washing. This avoids using the same sheets for a prolonged period of time and having your bed remade without having to wait on your sheets. It’s always smart to have a backup.

What size are college sheets? 

College dorm mattresses are typically a twin XL, in order to save space. A twin XL mattress is the same width as a regular twin, but it is 5 inches longer. So college sheets are designed to fit the twin XL mattress, which is 39” by 80”. Choose dorm bedding accordingly.

Summary

Here’s a recap of our top picks for the best bed sheets for college students in dorms: 

Sheets Material Best for
Casper Cool Supima Sheets Supima Cotton Cooling
Tuft & Needle Jersey Sheet Set Cotton & Lyocell Year-Round
Purple Sheets Bamboo Affordability
Brooklinen Classic Core Sheet Set Cotton Eco-Friendliness

The aforementioned sheet sets all have great qualities that are sure to mesh with any dorm room bed. The qualities that are most important depend on you and your preferences. Review these options and our additional comments to find one that works for you.

Looking for more great sheet sets? Check out our best sheets buying guide.