- Linen sheets are the most breathable sheets you can buy in the summer.
- The wrinkled texture is an acquired taste for some, but we love the casual look and durable feel.
- Linen is notoriously expensive, but we found high-quality options that come at accessible prices.
- Read more: The best sheets
Linen is a contentious textile. It wrinkles very easily, feels a bit rough, and is notoriously expensive. On the other hand, some prefer the casual, lived-in look, and it does get softer with time and use. Most importantly, because it’s made from hollow flax fibers, which absorb moisture and let air pass through, linen is breathable and stays dry even on the warmest, stuffiest nights.
We became believers from the first night we tried linen sheets. We felt their cooling benefits instantly and didn’t wake up sweaty or uncomfortable. If you sleep hot, you should try introducing linen to your rotation of bed sheets.
Product care can vary by brand, but you’ll typically want to hand wash or machine wash your linen sheets on a gentle cycle, without bleach. Then, tumble dry or line dry them.
Here are the best linen sheets in 2021
- Best linen sheets overall: Sijo
- Best linen sheets for variety: MagicLinen
- Best organic linen sheets: Coyuchi
- Best linen sheet design: Primary Goods
The cool, airy, and beautiful linen sheets from Sijo will be your summer favorite, or if you regularly sleep hot, a durable yearlong standby.
Pros: Stays dry and cool, casually wrinkled style, flexible flat sheet option
Cons: Doesn’t come in as many colors and sizes as competitors, may experience some shedding
Sijo sheets are the best linen sheets I’ve tried because they strike the right balance of comfort, coolness, durability, and price. After a couple months of testing, they knock out our former best pick, MagicLinen, because of how downright soft and comfortable they are, even while having the signature grainy texture of linen. And, they get softer and better after multiple washes. If your preconception of linen is that it’s too scratchy to enjoy, Sijo’s sheets will change your mind. They’re also airy and light, keeping me cool on California spring-nights-that-already-feel-like-summer (we recently had temps in the high 80s in late March).
I personally loved the wrinkled look, especially combined with the soothing Blush color. I’m also a fan of Sky, a dusky blue. The color and overall construction have held up well so far, and the fabric continues to feel both substantial and lightweight. You should expect some shedding in the first few washes — it’s a natural part of the process but a little annoying to pick off your bed.
Unlike with MagicLinen, I didn’t have any sizing issues with Sijo’s sheets. All the sets have a 15-inch depth. You can also opt in or out of a flat sheet, which provides great flexibility and can bring the price of your purchase down.
Best linen sheets for variety
MagicLinen’s comfortable linen sets include a deep option for thick mattresses and wear beautifully over time. You’ll also get the most color choice here.
Pros: Looks and feels better over time, comes in many colors, suitable for thick mattresses, OEKO-Tex certified
Cons: Takes some time to become softer and more comfortable
Linen is the only thing you can buy from MagicLinen, which is precisely the reason it’s been able to edge out other brands that have only treated the material as one more piece of their larger bedding puzzles.
All of its products are handcrafted in Vilnius, Lithuania. The linen is stonewashed — a softening process that’s completely natural and non-toxic — and OEKO-Tex certified, meaning it meets chemical safety standards and is free from harmful substances.
One reason these sheets stand out so much to senior editor Sally Kaplan is that they come in deep options for mattresses up to 18 inches tall, a sizing that’s usually difficult to find for linen. That means you can use mattress toppers or pads and still enjoy the comfort and feel of linen.
According to Sally, MagicLinen’s sheets aren’t the softest out of the bag, but after two years of use, they’ve aged well, getting softer and cozier with every wash.
If you’re not sure yet about committing, you can get fabric samples. A set of all the colors only costs $5, plus you’ll get a $5 discount off your next purchase.
Best organic linen sheets
Truly organic linen is hard to come by, which is why we appreciate Coyuchi’s thoughtful and careful approach to the fabric.
Pros: Organic and eco-friendly, durable weave
Cons: Pricey, not available in twin and full sizes
Coyuchi, a brand that’s always been committed to organic products, transparent and ethical practices, and nature-inspired designs, is one of the few makers of organic linen.
As it turns out, if you’re buying linen, you’re already being somewhat of an environmentalist. Flax is an eco-friendly plant that doesn’t require much fertilizer or irrigation in order to thrive. However, Coyuchi goes one step further by only working with farmers in France who grow other organic crops (e.g. wheat, legumes) in the soil that the flax rotates through. This process ensures that the flax is 100% organic.
In addition, the linen is Global Organic Textile Standard certified, Made Safe certified, and colored with organic dyes.
Expect to pay a premium if you care about shopping organic. Coyuchi’s durable and heavyweight Linen Set, which comes with one flat sheet, one fitted sheet, and two pillowcases and is available in seven colors, costs twice as much as other options in this guide.
Best linen sheet design
Primary Goods has a clever design that snaps the top sheet to your duvet, so you’ll never wake up with a bundle of fabric at your feet.
Pros: Clever top sheet design, quality construction
Cons: Only comes in three colors and stock is often low, pricey, not available in twin sizes
I never enjoyed sleeping with a top sheet because it simply didn’t stay put throughout the night. After trying Primary Goods’ linen sheet set, I don’t hate top sheets anymore. The set features 10 snaps each on the long sides of the top sheet and duvet cover, so they’ll always move together.
The linen itself is great and thoughtfully produced, too. It’s sourced from France, stone-washed for softness, and naturally dyed. It’s also OEKO-Tex certified and Global Organic Textile Standard certified. Soft and breathable, it feels great on my skin, plus the light pink color I own looks effortlessly casual.
The Primary Goods Primary Set only comes with the flat sheet and duvet cover; the Complete Set, which also includes a fitted sheet and pillowcases, is currently sold out in most sizes. For now, you can buy a fitted sheet and pillowcase set separately.
Check out our other great bedding guides