About a year ago, I made the switch to linen bedding, after I discovered what I found to be the best linen sheets on the market (more on those later). After countless nights spent tossing and turning trying to find the cold spot on the bed, a simple fabric swap was all it took for me to slumber like a baby.You see, linen is naturally temperature-regulating, meaning it’ll keep you cool in the summer and warm in the colder months. It also comes in a wider range of colors than other fabrics, so you can have more fun playing with different color schemes in your space. If you’ve never tried linen, it might be a bit of an adjustment, but we can say with confidence that it won’t take long to fall in love with the fabric. Here’s the breakdown.What should you look for when buying linen bedding?Linen is derived from the flax plant and typically comes from Belgium (widely hailed as the cream of the crop), Portugal, or France, so you might want to take a look at the origin while shopping. Unlike other sheets, thread count doesn’t matter when it comes to linen; it’s more about how the fabric actually feels on your skin. Some options are coarser or scratchier, while others are soft from the get-go. Linen softens the more you wash and use it, though. Generally, linen has a rumpled look that gives a boho, relaxed vibe, versus a crisp, wrinkle-free hotel sheet.Be advised that high-quality linen bedding is more of an investment than percale or cotton sheets, with prices typically between $200 and $350 for a queen-size set. We think it’s worth it, though. You’ll want to look for OEKO-TEX and GOTS certifications, which ensure that the products you receive don’t contain or haven’t been treated with chemicals that are known toxins.How should you care for linen sheets?Once you receive your new linen sheet set, toss ’em in the wash, using warm water to reduce the amount of potential shrinkage. Many sets are pre-washed, which means you won’t deal with much—if any–shrinking. Don’t treat linen with fabric softeners or powdered/pod detergents. Liquid detergent is all you need. When dried, linen creates more lint than other fabrics, but don’t fret; it slows after a few washes. If you want to lengthen the lifetime of your sheets, air dry them instead of using the dryer. Below, we’ll walk you through the best linen sheets we’ve found to give your bed a fresh, lived-in feel. We included picks from buzzy brands like Bed Threads and Quince, plus mainstays like Brooklinen, Parachute, Boll & Branch, and Linoto.
Cuddling up with your furry friends is a wonderful way to end a long day, but getting cozy with your dog or cat calls for pet blankets and not just any old throw blanket—these are fuzzy, fluffy throws that are specifically designed to stand up to shedding, drooling, and even chewing.Blankets from brands like PetAmi, Petmaker, Petfusion, Pet Parents, and more are some of the top names in the (admittedly niche) world of pet blankets, offering up items that are as comfy as they are functional. Pet subscriptions will sometimes throw in a blanket but you don’t always get to choose the type of blanket. A worthwhile pet blanket should be water-resistant, if not waterproof, and machine-washable (some blankets offer some level of stain resistance too, but it’s always nice to have the option to just toss it straight in the washer if your favorite doggie has an accident). It earns bonus points if it’s made of a material that won’t retain pet hair or, at the very least, will hide it. Most importantly, a pet blanket should be soft, soothing, and comfortable. Whether you plan to share it with your pet or use it to line their kennel or bed, any blanket you buy for them should help them feel safe and relaxed, as if it were part of their personal nest. Luckily there’s a wealth of options out there to choose from, and we’ve highlighted some of the very best ones on the market right here. Read on to find the perfect pet blanket for you and your fur baby to snuggle.All products featured on SELF are independently selected by our editors. However, when you buy something through our retail links, we may earn an affiliate commission.
Your bedroom should be the respite you’re overjoyed to come home to after a long day. To achieve that, dreamy pillows, crisp linens, and the best duvets aren’t just encouraged—they’re integral to a calming room and soothing sleep. Finding a duvet might seem simple, but there are a few things to think about before you invest in this sleep product. After all, a good duvet will last for decades to come.What’s the difference between a duvet and a comforter?Chances are, you’ve used the term “comforter” and “duvet” interchangeably. The two are very similar, and can technically be used interchangeably since they’re both filled with fluff (like down, microfiber, or cotton), but there are a few key differences between them. First, the comforter originated in the United States while the duvet is originally from Europe. And while the comforter is a standalone-filled cover for your bed, the duvet consists of two pieces: an insert and a cover. Comforters are often thinner for year-round use, while duvets are fluffier and warmer. And, comforters are usually paired with a top sheet for hygienic purposes, but duvets don’t need one since they have an easily washable cover (but you can always use one if you want). Since it has a cover, this also means you don’t need to pop your duvet in the washing machine, because it doesn’t come in contact with your body.What should you look for in a duvet?You’ll first want to decide what kind of duvet filling you want: down or down alternative. Down fill is fluffy and supremely warm, made with goose down and often blended with feathers. We recommend looking for a down duvet that’s made with Responsible Down Standard (RDS) down, which means the goose farms where the down is harvested are held to a humane standard. Down alternative fill, on the other hand, is typically made with microfiber polyester, lyocell, or cotton. This fill is also ideal for those with severe allergies, as non-hypoallergenic down fill contains allergens from the feathers.Once you decide on a filling, you’ll want to think about how warm you like to be. Similar to shopping for a comforter, cold sleepers should look for a duvet insert that has a higher fill power or GSM (grams per square meter). The higher the GSM, the heavier the duvet. You might also want to look for baffle box or diamond stitching, which keeps the fill from redistributing over time. You should check to see if the duvet insert has corner ties, so it can be tied to a duvet cover to keep from bunching up during use. Once you’ve found your dream duvet, you can cover it with whatever duvet cover suits your fancy, from breathable linen to crispy percale, in every color and design imaginable.We’ve scoured hundreds of reviews to find the best duvets for every kind of sleeper. You’ll find top picks at every price point from beloved brands and retailers like Casper, Parachute, Boll & Branch, Brooklinen, and more. The coziest snooze of your life is an order away.
We’ve all been there: You reach for your bath towel and it’s still damp and musty from the night before. The best quick-dry towels exist for those moments, so you don’t have to resort to drying off with yesterday’s still-wet towel—or slip and slide your way through your home for a fresh one. Besides being a less than ideal way to dry off after showering, using a musty towel harbors more mildew, bacteria, and viruses. The chances of those actually harming you are slim, SELF reported previously, but still, having a few fast-drying, absorbent towels lying around is never a bad idea—especially if you’re one to think about germs.What to look for in a quick-drying towel:In general, the thinner and more lightweight the towel, the faster it dries, so look for a low GSM (grams per square meter). Since efficient dry-time is the name of the game, a plush, spa-like towel isn’t ideal. Instead, go for breathable fabrics like waffle weave or microfiber. You’ll also want to consider what you’ll be using the towel for. If you’re searching for camping towels, something packable with a carrying case is easy to stow. For bathing and showering, you might also consider purchasing a bath sheet, which has a larger surface area and feels thinner than your typical bath towel. You’ll probably also want something that’s machine washable, too.Here, we’ve used those guidelines to find highly-rated fast-drying towels for showering, swimming, working out, camping, and even drying your hair. We’ve featured high-quality picks from brands and retailers like Brooklinen, Parachute, Lululemon, and more. Time to ditch the damp!Best Quick-Dry Bath TowelsYour bathroom is your sanctuary, right? So it’s important that just like your bath-robes, your quick-drying bath towels don’t skimp on softness, absorbency, and style. On the pricier end, we’ve raved about Onsen’s cotton waffle weave bath towels, which come in a multitude of color options and different sizes. Brooklinen’s and Parachute’s more affordable waffle weave towels have rave reviews, too. If you want something a little cozier, Brooklinen and Lands End make lightweight Turkish cotton bath towels that are minimalist enough to go with all the rest of your bathroom decor.WayfairWayfair Basics Quick Dry 6-Piece 100% Cotton Towel SetWest ElmWest Elm Organic Quick-Dry Textured TowelLands’ EndLands’ End Turkish Quick-Dry Hydrocotton 6-Piece Bath Towel SetBest Quick-Dry Hair TowelsHaving a towel that’s made specifically for your hair might feel extraneous, but trust us on this one. Wet hair is vulnerable hair, so wrapping it up in a heavy bath towel can result in breakage and unnecessary frizz (and a headache, if we’re being real). Hair towels are lightweight and easy to travel with, and many are made with frizz-fighting technology and soft fabrics (like microfiber or waffle weave) to prevent breakage. These towels are also easy to use, thanks to the sewn-on buttons that keep them fastened to your head. Plus, not only do they dry fast, but they cut down your hair’s dry time, too.AmazonAquis Microfiber Hair TowelAmazonAquis Copper Sure Rapid Dry Microfiber Hair WrapBest Quick-Dry Travel TowelsFrequent campers and backpackers know: The lighter you pack, the better. Camping towels are essential for hygiene and cleaning, but they shouldn’t take up too much space. Look for a microfiber travel towel that’s also antimicrobial to fend off mildew and odor. REI offers plenty of highly-rated options that are highly absorbent, easy to wring out and hang, and packable. REIREI Co-op Multi Towel LiteREIMatador NanoDry TowelEddie BauerEddie Bauer Travelon Anti-Bacterial Travel TowelL.L.BeanL.L.Bean Sea to Summit Tek TowelREIPackTowl Personal TowelBest Quick-Dry Gym TowelsWhether you’re back in the gym or still working out at home, having your own workout towel is better than a scratchy gym towel (or nothing at all!). Trusted brands like Lululemon and Alo Yoga have their own versions, and you can find plenty of other highly-rated options from retailers like Amazon and REI. Keep in mind that you’ll want a towel that doesn’t slip, in case you’ll be using it on a mat or over indoor bike handlebars. Like many of our other recommendations, you’ll also want to keep an eye out for quick-dry microfiber towels, since they’re highly absorbent and soft. AloAlo Performance No Sweat Hand TowelAmazonActeon 5-Pack Microfiber Gym TowelsREIREI Co-op Multi Towel MiniBest Quick-Dry Beach TowelsOn a hot beach day, you want a towel that’s going to dry in between your dips in the water that’s still substantial enough that it won’t fly away. Chances are, you’ll probably want an extra large towel too, for maximum personal sunbathing space. You could go for the traditional, nostalgic striped terry towel, which Amazon has plenty of. We recommend Dock & Bay’s, which has more than 2,000 five-star reviews to boot. Another option are Turkish towels, which feel similar to shawls or bath sheets. They’re uniquely lightweight and often beautifully dyed.AmazonDock & Bay Large Beach TowelCoyuchiCoyuchi Mediterranean Organic TowelsAmazonWetcat Turkish Beach TowelAmazonLaguna Beach Textile Co Oversize Plush Cabana TowelAmazonAkaso Microfiber Beach TowelRelated:
Black Friday presents the perfect opportunity to reimagine your home, purging your space of items that no longer serve you or the life you want to create in favor of high-performing gear that can elevate your day-to-day.This is especially true of the kitchen, where deals on appliances have the potential to not only save you big bucks but a lot of time and energy (read: hassle), freeing up your schedule for activities you enjoy and ideally supporting a healthier lifestyle along the way.Enter the cult-favorite Vitamix, hailed by cooking and prepping pros for its intuitive—and very hard-working—blenders designed to help chefs of all skill levels whip up delicious homemade juices, smoothies, dips, and dressings in a matter of minutes (sometimes seconds). They also happen to be very easy to clean and appear super sleek sitting on your kitchen countertop.Whether you’re looking to kickstart your mornings (click for our favorite smoothie recipes) or reclaim your evenings, get ahead of New Year’s health resolutions, or take your love of entertaining to the next level (more delicious recipes here), you can rest assured that there’s a Vitamix blender function and finish for you.From the classic Explorian to the tech-savvy A3500 Ascent, scroll below for some of the best Vitamix deals going on right now (and be sure to snag one as a gift for your home or someone you love before they’re gone!).All products featured on SELF are independently selected by our editors. However, when you buy something through our retail links, we may earn an affiliate commission.
A curious thing happened sometime last year: My family members, held together by a robust group chat, decided to buy indoor garden kits. My brother was the first to do it, sending us regular updates on the state of his aggressive basil. Then my parents joined in the fun, dusting off their ’90s Aeorgarden and buying a new one. Suddenly they were growing tomatoes, kale, basil, and flowers. Finally, not wanting to be left out, I purchased a smaller unit and have spent a lot of time trying to figure out the best place to grow chamomile in my studio apartment. (I’ll make a decision eventually.)
Whether you want to start a personal farmers market in your living room or you just like to watch things grow, we have 10 indoor garden kits for you to take your plant parenthood to the next level. Most of these are hydroponic systems—which means your plants will grow in something other than soil, like water—and they require you to buy special seed kits, but some of the options are perfect for growing plants the old-fashioned way (in a pot with soil).
All products featured on SELF are independently selected by our editors. However, when you buy something through our retail links, we may earn an affiliate commission.