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Full Bed Sheets - Full Bed Sheets and Other Sizes - Maintenance, Measurements, Purchase

Maintenance, Measurements and Purchase

inches wash twin quality

Bed sheets are made from a variety of fabrics, including cotton, silk, linen, satin, rayon, and others. Diverse fabric selection makes caring for full bed sheets vary according to the cloth in question. Some suggestions for the most common fabrics:

  • Silk: Wash by hand 3-5 times after purchase, then machine wash on delicate using a gentle detergent.
  • Cotton: Machine wash warm separate from polyesters and dry on permanent press.
  • Rayon: Depending on the quality of fabric, this will either be dry-cleaned or washed on delicate. Watch for running dye and pull back on care if colors start to shift around the fabric.
  • Satin: Dry clean is highly preferred, or a light machine wash with indoor hang-drying afterwards.

To keep linens clean, change bed sheets once every 2-4 weeks, changing pillowcases twice as often. Adapt to use as well—sheets can be soiled by sweat, dirt, and other contaminants depending on individual lifestyles.


Purchasing a bed sheet is based on the size of the bed in question. Bed sizes, however, do not attend to any global standard. Twin beds are called singles in Europe and are slightly smaller—35 x 79 inches (90 × 200 cm) as compared to America’s standard of 39 × 75 inches (97 × 191 cm). Double beds measure 54 × 75 inches (137 × 191 cm) in the U.S. and 55 × 79 inches (140 × 200 cm) in Europe. These differences are mostly due to Europe’s use of the metric system, as seen in the cleanly rounded metric dimensions of the European measurements.

Sizes get more muddled in higher varieties. An American queen-sized bed 60 × 80 inches (152 × 203) which is slightly larger than a United Kingdom or Ireland king-sized bed at 60 × 78 inches (152 × 198 cm). A European queen-sized (Spain, Germany, etc.) is moderately larger at 63 × 79 inches (160 × 200 cm).

Full bed sheets are a specifically American concept and are designed to fit beds that measure 54 × 80 inches (137 × 203 cm). The U.S. also features the unique sizes of the XL twin at 39 × 80 inches (97 × 203) and the California king at 72 × 84 inches (183 × 213 cm). The U.K. and Europe also include categories of their own which are beyond the scope of this article.


Double, twin, full bed sheets, and the like can be purchased for quality, commodity, or budget. Budget sheets can be purchased at most department stores, and most stock quality versions as well. Expensive sheets can be found online or at specialty linen stores.

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