Guide to Cotton Sheets: What to Know About Egyptian, Pima and Supima

Last Updated on January 13, 2022

by Marc Werner, Founder - GhostBed

Thinking about upgrading your bedding? If you’re looking for the best cotton sheets, there are a few types that you’ll see come up time and time again: Egyptian, Pima and Supima.

These three types are well-known as the finest cotton sheets, but it’s important to understand the differences between them. Although they are all cotton fiber materials, each of these fabrics will provide a different sleep experience. Keep reading as we review the pros and cons of each!

Overview: Best Cotton Sheets

Our pick for the best type of cotton sheets is a luxurious Supima cotton. It’s soft, breathable and durable so you stay comfortable and cozy. And because of its strict regulations, you’ll know you’re getting the best quality sheets, with no cheaper fabrics blended in.

Bonus: GhostBed’s Supima cotton sheets take it a step further with cooling and eco-friendly TENCEL® fibers for superior cooling and a super-smooth feel.

I. Why the Bed Sheets You Use Matter

II. Comparing Egyptian, Pima and Supima Cotton

III. Egyptian, Pima and Supima: What are the Best Cotton Sheets?

IV. GhostBed’s Luxury Sheets

I. Why the Bed Sheets You Use Matter

You probably know the importance of selecting the right type of mattress… but if you’re still sleeping on old, scratchy bed sheets, you’re doing yourself (and your sleep) a disservice!

There’s nothing better than crawling into bed and feeling cool, comfortable and luxurious sheets against your skin. The right sheets will help you stay comfortable all night long, so you get your best sleep yet.

Cotton bed sheets are by far the most popular option, and for many good reasons:

  • They’re super breathable, making them the better choice for warm sleepers than other types of sheets like polyester.
  • They’re easy to care for and tend to release stains easily when wet.
  • Most types of cotton sheets are very durable, especially those made with long-staple fibers.
  • As a natural-fiber option, cotton bed sheets are a great choice for those with allergies or sensitive skin.
  • Unlike synthetic fabrics, high-quality cotton tends to get softer with age.

Additionally, cotton bed sheets offer a variety of feels, depending on the weave, staple and other factors. Staple refers to the length of the cotton fibers; longer fibers are stronger, softer and more durable.

II. Comparing Egyptian, Pima and Supima Cotton

Egyptian, Pima and Supima are all extra-long staple cottons and share some similar characteristics, but there are also some key differences to know. The most prominent difference is where they originate from.

Egyptian cotton, for example, is grown in Egypt right along the Nile River, where it has the perfect climate to grow. It's a luxurious choice with a price point to match. To combat sticker shock, some companies blend Egyptian cotton with other inferior fabrics to make them more affordable, so be sure to check the label before purchasing. It can be very easy to be duped when shopping for Egyptian sheets.

Pima, on the other hand, is grown primarily in Peru. Prices for Pima cotton sheets are usually still on the higher end, but are a little more accessible than Egyptian cotton. Similar to Egyptian cotton sheets, Pima may be blended with other fabrics to keep the cost of the sheets down.

Finally, Supima cotton refers to American-grown cotton, from the Western and Southwestern regions. A trademarked brand, the name derives from “superior” + “Pima,” denoting its high quality standards. 35% longer than other cottons, Supima is known for its strength, softness and comfort. This fabric is strictly regulated by the Supima non-profit organization, so you know you’re getting what you’re paying for!

Here’s a quick comparison of these three types of cotton sheets:

Egyptian Cotton Pima Cotton Supima Cotton
Typical Origin Egypt Peru United States
Breathability Excellent Excellent Excellent
Durability Excellent (if pure Egyptian cotton) Great Excellent
Price Point $$$ $$ $$ - $$$
Care Instructions Machine washable in cold water; air dry when possible Machine washable in cold water; air dry when possible Machine washable in cold water; air dry when possible
Pros Soft and durable (if pure Egyptian cotton) Soft and durable (if pure Pima cotton)
  • - Extremely soft and durable
  • - Strictly regulated and verified for authenticity
  • - American grown
Cons May be blended with inferior fabrics May be blended with inferior fabrics More expensive than other types of cotton sheets

III. Egyptian, Pima, and Supima: What are the Best Cotton Sheets?

Our pick for the best cotton sheets is Supima, for a couple of reasons. First, because of its strict regulations, you’ll know you’re getting the best quality sheets, with no cheaper fabrics blended in. While splurging on Egyptian cotton sheets might be tempting, the label simply refers to where the fabric was manufactured — it’s much harder to tell the quality of the sheets at first glance.

Second, sheets made with Supima are a great choice if you have allergies or any skin sensitivities, because of its ability to resist mold and dust mites. Your Supima cotton bed sheets will last many years and help you get the sleep you deserve.

IV. GhostBed’s Luxury Sheets

Couple relaxing on their GhostBed mattress with luxury Supima cotton & TENCEL® GhostSheets.

For the best cotton sheets at an affordable price point, check out our luxurious GhostSheets! These sheets are Crafted with premium, Supima cotton and combined with cooling and eco-friendly TENCEL® fibers. When blended with cotton, TENCEL® adds unbeatable wrinkle-resistance and a smooth, silky feel. Available for all mattress sizes, in two neutral colors (white and gray).

Marc Werner - Founder, GhostBed

Marc Werner

Founder - GhostBed

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After undergoing three neck surgeries, Marc knew what it was like to live and sleep in constant pain. In 2001, after searching fruitlessly for a comfortable pillow and mattress that supported his neck and back ... Learn More

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