Plus, the bed sheets that always feel cool — even on the hottest nights.
This story originally appeared on RealSimple.com.
Last week, Parachute, a popular bedding company and the creator of our editors' favorite bath towels, opened its first New York City storefront. We stopped by to check out the space (it's absolutely gorgeous, thanks to Jessica Helgerson Interior Design), and of course, we couldn't resist the opportunity to talk about all things bedding with the company's founder, Ariel Kaye. As the weather finally starts to warm up for the season, we turned our attention to easy tricks to build a cooler bed for summer. Here, Kaye shares 5 little swaps to create a summer-ready bed—and sleep better all season long.
1. Replace your usual duvet cover with a luxe linen one.
"There are a few different fabrics we find are really great for summer—one is our linen," says Kaye. "Linen bedding is really breathable, it’s made out of flax, and it’s a looser weave, which is why it’s so breathable," she explains. Not sure if you'll have a hard time adjusting to the fresh feeling of linen? "For people who aren’t familiar with linen, I always recommend that you start with a duvet cover, and keep percale for sheets." This way, you'll get used to the feel of a linen duvet (from $230, parachute.com), and see for yourself how it softens with each wash, before you commit to an entire new sheet set.
2. Switch out dark bed linens for lighter colors.
Even if you prefer dark gray or navy blue bedding during the winter months, now's the time to switch them out for a lighter hue, Kaye says. Lighter colors make you feel cooler than darker colors—even if the sun set hours ago and the sheets aren't absorbing or reflecting light. Regardless of the actual temperature, lighter colors trick the mind into thinking it's cooler.
3. Skip the top sheet (at least for the season).
The easiest (and most affordable!) way to keep your bed cool? Cut down on the number of layers. "If you’re a top sheet person in the winter months, skip the top sheet during the summer months," Kaye suggests. In fact, Parachute specifically sells sheet sets (from $109, parachute.com) with a separate top sheet so you can opt in or out of this extra (and heavily debated) layer.
But don't ditch the top sheet so fast—keep one in your linen closet, and on the hottest nights of the year, you can use it in place of a duvet cover or quilt, Kaye says.
4. Swap out the duvet for a versatile quilt.
"I actually skip the duvet inserts all together and I use one of our quilts," says Kaye. "They’re heavy enough when you want that coziness, but they’re not going to make you sweat." Plus, Parachute quilts (from $229, parachute.com) are double-sided, so you choose from the linen side or the cotton side, depending upon your preference.
5. Choose percale over sateen.
"Percale are cooler to the touch than sateen, so they’re also a great product for summer," explains Kaye. Lightweight, breathable, and cool to the touch, percale should be your go-to sheet set (from $109, parachute.com) if you tend to sleep hot.