A silk pillowcase does for the body what diamonds do for the hand. Where a diamond shines, silk slides – smooth, cool to the touch and softer than cotton – it’s a luxurious addition to any bedroom and a godsend for your sleeping habits and the health of your hair and skin.
Discover why you need to upgrade your bedroom and sleep routine with luxurious and stylish silk pillowcases and the softest 100% pure silk bedding and accessories.
What is silk?
Silk is a natural fibre produced not only by silkworms. Many more insects and creepy crawlies have silk fibres, including certain beetles, honey bees, bumble bees, hornets, weaver ants, and plenty more. Used to craft nests and cocoons, humans first began cultivating silk production in China during the Neolithic period, nearly 12,000 years ago. Even today, China remains the world’s largest producer of silk.
Although many other insects produce silk-like substances, most of the world’s silk comes from Bombyx mori larvae. This worm lives exclusively on the mulberry tree and is an integral part of the silk production process.
Boasting lustre, shine, strength and durability, silk sits alongside salt and gold as the backbone of global trade and the epitome of luxury in the Old World. Costly to produce and just as expensive to purchase, coveted for its appearance and texture-dressed to the nines or adorning the master bedroom-silk is elegance encapsulated.
How is silk made?
Silk production, also known as sericulture, can be simplified into a four-step process.
- Bombyx mori larvae are fed mulberry leaves.
- After moulting, larvae spin their cocoon, solidifying the silk once it comes in contact with the air.
- The cocoon is placed in boiling water, and silk is extracted by brushing the cocoon.
- Raw silk is woven into fabric or spun into yarn.
A primary reason for the exorbitant cost of silk is that nearly 3000 silkworms are needed to spin 500 grams of silk. Even though a single cocoon can contain about a kilometre of silk filament, 48 silk filaments are required for a single silk thread.
Benefits of Silk
Silk is beloved for its texture, appearance, strength, durability, elasticity, and absorbency.
Texture: lusciously soft.
Appearance: shimmering lustre thanks to the triangular prism-like structure of silk fibres, which reflect a subtle rainbow hue.
Strength, durability: similar to spider web silk (depending on the spinning conditions).
Elasticity: its flexibility makes it ideal for garments and upholstery.
Absorbency: it can absorb up to 30% of its weight in moisture without feeling damp and dries quickly.
1. A Restful Night Sleep
The woven satin structure of silk is cool to the touch. With a supportive pillow, silk can help regulate the temperature and moisture levels around you while you sleep. Compared to cotton fibres (under 60 millimetres long), silkworms can spin fine thread between 500 to 1500 metres, making it a far more comfortable fabric for your bedtime routine.
2. Smooth Surface Means Less Tugging On Your Skin
Silk is comfortable and skin-friendly, thanks to natural proteins, making it less irritating to your skin and unlikely to cause an immune response. The natural proteins give silk a smooth surface for less tugging on hair and skin and zero sleep creases. Unlike other fabrics which pull on your skin as you move around in your sleep, silk slides and is less likely to imprint your face.
3. Anti-aging Wrinkle Defence
Silk is often heralded for its anti-aging properties. Beloved for its smooth, frictionless surface, many believe this attribute makes silk pillowcases the perfect antidote to ageing. Specialist dermatologist Dr Adam Sheridan says, “our skin is less likely to get an imprint” from silk pillowcases, promoting fewer wrinkles while we sleep.
On the other hand, Dr Elizabeth Tanzi, Founder and Director of Capital Laser and Skin Care and Associate Clinical Professor, Department of Dermatology at the George Washington University Medical Centre, blames our sleep patterns.
Sleeping on your left side will leave more wrinkles on the left side of your face. Or in other words, “when [skin is] squished into one position, over time it starts to wrinkle,” which is what we’re trying to avoid with our silk pillowcase.
Since the jury is still out, we recommend combining both schools of thought. Try sleeping on your back to avoid putting too much pressure on either side of your face. But if you do end up sleeping on one side or the other, your silk pillowcase will help reduce the appearance of wrinkles when you wake up.
4. Natural Moisturising Properties
Silk consists of two primary proteins–fibroin and sericin. While fibroin promotes strength and durability, sericin is the source of silk’s natural moisturising properties. Often used in hair and skin care products, sericin is also anti-microbial and anti-fungal, making it the ideal choice for your pillowcase.
Unlike cotton, which can draw in moisture from your hair and face, sleeping on a silk surface prevents your skin and hair from dehydrating overnight.
5. Acne-fighting Assistance
Let’s get one thing out of the way – there’s no such thing as pillowcases for acne – there’s no scientific evidence to suggest any particular material or fibre will help reduce or stop your acne breakouts.
Although a silk pillowcase won’t rid you of acne after a single night’s sleep, your choice of pillowcase and how you care for it can significantly impact the health of your skin. The primary reason silk is the fabric of choice for anti-acne pillowcases is its absorbency. As we sleep, our pillowcases are essentially a sponge. If not washed or changed regularly, the build-up of bacteria, oil and dirt can end up back on your skin, aggravating your acne.
Because silk has a lower density than cotton and wool, it’s far more moisture absorbent, retaining a third of its weight in moisture without feeling damp.
Regularly changing your bed sheets and washing your pillowcases is the easiest way to prevent your bed from becoming the perfect shelter for opportunistic microorganisms that can unbalance your skin microbiome.
Ten Tips For Taking Care of Silk
- Handwashing, machine washing? It’s all the same to silk. However, handwashing is much prefered.
- Never wash in hot water! Keep the temperature below 30º Celsius.
- Use low pH detergent.
- Wash with other delicates.
- Air drying is recommended.
- Keep away from direct sunlight.
- Iron on the back side to avoid damaging sheen.
- Do not use fabric softener.
- Avoid bleach.
- If you’re unsure, check the care label.
If your silk pillowcase gets stained, we recommend taking it to a dry cleaner. For an at-home remedy, soak your pillowcase in water and apply a generous amount of castile soap to the stain. After 30 minutes to an hour, rinse the soap from the stained area. Repeat this process until the stain is removed.
Sleep Better With Silk
Become a sleeping beauty without all the Disney shenanigans. Get your forty winks with a gorgeous silk pillowcase. More than just the most comfortable bedroom material, it absorbs less skincare than cotton pillowcases, doesn’t pull or drag on your hair and skin, and keeps your locks frizz-free!
Upgrade your bedroom with luxurious and stylish silk pillowcases from Australia’s premier supplier of the softest 100% pure silk bedding and accessories.