Decorating Ideas Bedding & Mattresses

The Softest, Coziest Flannel Sheets That Won’t Pill After a Few Washes

Photo: Getty Images/AleksandarNakic
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With the colder months officially upon us, ‘tis the season to break out your coziest blankets—and if warmth is what you’re after, you’re going to want to go for flannel sheets as your bedding of choice. A time-trusted favorite for their toasty, buttery softness, there are few things more satisfying than snuggling up in that warm and fuzzy flannel feeling. But before we get into the best flannel sheets that you’ll want on your bed, indulge us in a quick flannel crash course.

What to look for when shopping for flannel sheets

It’s important to know that flannel can be made of multiple types of material, like wool, cotton, or synthetic fibers like polyester. Though they were traditionally made using wool, cotton flannel is now the most common, offering a softer, more breathable feel. ”For the overall best experience with flannel sheets, I would recommend 100 percent cotton options,” says Amelia Jerden, a certified sleep coach and sleep specialist for Sleepopolis.

Another key thing to consider when shopping for flannel sheets is the GSM—or the grams per square meter—unlike thread count which is more relevant for traditional cotton bed sheets. “GSM measures the weight, durability, and overall quality of the flannel,” says Jerden. “A GSM of 130-135 is considered lightweight and most breathable. A GSM of 140-150 is considered mid-weight and is best for year-round use. And a GSM of 160 or higher is heavyweight—best suited for very cold weather.”

Beyond the GSM, look for terms like “napping” or “brushing” to identify high quality flannel sheets. “Napping is a finishing technique in which woven fabric is brushed with metal to raise the fibers and create the fuzzy texture flannel is known for,” explains Jerden. Brushed flannel sheets are typically much softer than non-brushed varieties, and though they might shed a bit at first, it’s totally normal and usually stops after a few washes.

Best overall

L.L. Bean, Ultrasoft Comfort Flannel Sheet Set
L.L. Bean, Ultrasoft Comfort Flannel Sheet Set — $129.00

Sizes available: Twin-Cal King

Weighing in at 5 oz. (which amounts to about 170 GSM), these L.L. Bean sheets are on the heavier side, which means they’re perfect for keeping warm through cold winter nights, but can also be used year round if you’re a cold sleeper. The cotton flannel is brushed, giving it that quintessential soft and fuzzy texture that only gets better with every wash. It’s no wonder why almost 3,000 L.L. Bean shoppers have given these flannel sheets 5-stars. “Warning: you will never want to get out of bed in these sheets,” writes one 5-star reviewer, “They are so cozy and the fabric feels durable. Everyone on my Christmas list is getting a set.”

Material: 100% brushed cotton flannel
Weight: 5 oz.
Colors: 8 options

Pros

  • Resistant to pilling, shrinking, and fading
  • Gets softer after every wash
  • Comfortable weight for year-round use

Cons

  • Some reviewers say they shed often
  • Colors may vary slightly

Best festive

eddie bauer flannel sheet sheet
Eddie Bauer, Cotton Flannel Bedding Set — $41.00

Sizes available: Twin-King

If flannel bedding is a holiday exclusive in your house, you might as well go for a festive option in the form of this Eddie Bauer flannel set. Featuring an adorable winter motif of dogs on snowboards (I mean come on!), these warm, cotton flannel sheets totally get you into the holiday spirit. What’s more, they’re brushed not once, but three times to achieve peak softness. Amazon shoppers say the sheets live up to their buttery soft claims, and that they’re incredibly comfortable for the price.

Material: 100% cotton flannel
Weight/GSM: 160 GSM
Colors: 21 pattern options

Pros

  • Pre-shrunk
  • Warm, but breathable
  • Deep pockets

Cons

  • Reviewers say they lack durability
  • Can feel a bit scratchy at first (though some reviewers say this goes away after a couple of washes)

Best floral

Great Bay Home, 100% Turkish Cotton Queen Flannel Sheets Set
Great Bay Home, 100% Turkish Cotton Queen Flannel Sheets Set — $55.00

Sizes available: Twin-Cal King

Fans of a dainty floral will fall head over heels for the blush pink floral pattern on these flannel sheets by Great Bay Home. Made using Turkish cotton flannel, these cozy flannel sheets have a GSM of 170—a great weight to have if you’re craving warmth during an intense winter. What’s more, over 5,000 Amazon shoppers have given them a 5-star rating, touting their soft, comfortable feel that you’ll want to tuck into all year round.

Material: Turkish cotton flannel
Weight/GSM: 170 GSM
Colors: 15 color and pattern options

Pros

  • Warm enough for intense winters
  • Soft and comfortable feel
  • Good value

Cons

  • Some reviews claim they aren’t fade resistant
  • Stitching isn’t always consistent

Best solid

The Company Store, Legends Hotel™ Velvet Flannel Sheet Set
The Company Store, Legends Hotel™ Velvet Flannel Sheet Set — $194.00

Sizes available: Twin-King

Made in Portugal using a weighty, 5 oz. flannel, The Company Store’s flannel sheets boast a velvet-like feel that’s the epitome of luxury. They’re carefully combed to unlock their cloud-like softness and combat pilling, so you get flannel sheets that are as durable as they are toasty. Plus, there’s a spectrum of rich, solid color options available—so you’re bound to find a set to match your bedding. Company Store shoppers point to the sheets’ luxurious feel and vibrant colors as key favorites. You can snag yours for 20% off now through 11/25 with code FRIYAY22 at checkout!

Material: 100% cotton flannel
Weight/GSM: 5 oz.
Colors: 14 solid colors to choose from

Pros

  • Soft, velvety feel
  • Warm and comfortable
  • Vibrant color options
  • Durably made

Cons

  • Higher price point
  • May shed slightly, according to some reviewers

Best budget

Threshold, Holiday Pattern Flannel Sheet Set
Threshold, Holiday Pattern Flannel Sheet Set — $35.00

Sizes available: Twin-King

Craving extra warmth without the high price tag? These flannel sheets from Target are a solid affordable option. Available in a trio of holiday inspired prints, they’re an easy way to spruce up your bedding during the fall and winter season. They have a lightweight, breathable feel that’s warm—but not overbearingly so—making them a great choice for folks who live in cooler climates and require light warmth no matter the time of year. According to reviews, shoppers say they feel a little stiff at first, but soften up after the first couple of washes.

Material: cotton flannel
Weight/GSM: unknown
Colors: 3 pattern options

Pros

  • Affordable
  • Lightweight, but warm
  • Can be used year-round
  • Festive prints

Cons

  • Thin material, according to reviews
  • Might lack durability
  • Feels stiff before washing

Best splurge

Boll & Branch, Flannel Sheet Set
Boll & Branch, Flannel Sheet Set — $298.00

Sizes available: Twin-Split King

Boll & Branch thought of everything when designing its flannel sheets. Made of 100 percent organic cotton, these sheets strike the perfect balance between warmth and breathability, so you needn’t worry about overheating in the night. Beyond brushing every piece to boost its softness, Boll & Branch finishes the sheets off with a process called shearing, “it gets rid of pilling that forms during our brushing process, and makes the fabric resistant to pilling in the future,” says Boll & Branch co-founder and chief designer Missy Tannen—leaving you with flannel sheets that can stand the test of time.

Material:
100% organic cotton
Weight/GSM: 5.1 oz for solid colors, and 5.3 oz. for woven patterns
Colors: 11 color and pattern options

Pros

  • Warm, but breathable
  • Soft, velvety texture
  • Pill-resistant finish
  • Certified organic cotton

Cons

  • Not pre-shrunk

Best plaid

the company store plaid velvet flannel sheets
The Company Store, Legends Hotel™ Jared Plaid Velvet Flannel Sheet Set — $219.00

Sizes available: Twin-King

Let’s face it, most of us picture plaid when we think about flannel anyway, so why not go for plaid flannel bedding? The Company Store’s Jared Plaid Flannel Sheets feature a classic red, navy, and yellow colorway that positively screams fall and winter—making these luxe flannel sheets a timeless cold weather staple. Careful brushing gives the cozy sheets their soft, velvety texture, while yarn-dying gives the colorful plaid pattern its bold, vibrant look. You can snag yours for 20% off now through 11/25 with code FRIYAY22 at checkout!

Material: cotton yarn-dyed flannel
Weight/GSM: 5 oz. / 170 GSM
Colors: Red multi

Pros

  • Timeless pattern
  • Yarn-dyed for more vibrant color
  • Warm and toasty feel
  • Brushed for added softness

Cons

  • May be too warm for some
  • Higher price point

Best lightweight

Brooklinen, Flannel Core Sheet Set
Brooklinen, Flannel Core Sheet Set — $209.00

Sizes available: Twin-Cali King

The lightweight, breathable feel of Brooklinen’s brushed flannel sheet set makes it a winner for year-round use if you live in a warmer climate—offering reliable warmth that’s always cozy, never sweaty. Our Los Angeles-based senior commerce editor, Gina Vaynshteyn, swears by these. As a hot sleeper, she still feels cozy and warm without waking up drenched in sweat.

And the rest of the internet likes them, too. “They are so light, yet warm, like being hugged,” writes one 5-star reviewer. Another Brooklinen shopper claims her flannel sheets have held up well in the wash with zero pilling, “Love the flannels,” she writes, “Most pill after a while but I’ve washed mine 4x so far and no pilling!”

Material: 100% cotton flannel
Weight/GSM: 140 GSM
Colors: 5 menswear inspired patterns

Pros

  • Lightweight feel
  • Warm, but not sweaty
  • Minimal pilling, according to reviewers

Cons

  • Higher price tag
  • May be too warm for hot sleepers

Best organic

Quince, Luxury Organic Flannel Sheet Set
Quince, Luxury Organic Flannel Sheet Set — $130.00

Sizes available: Twin-Cal King

Quince’s luxury flannel sheets are brushed on both sides for all-over softness that’s resistant to pilling even after a few washes. Made using certified organic cotton flannel, Quince sheets have an ultra-breathable feel (that they claim can be enjoyed by even the hottest sleepers) and still deliver warmth and coziness when you need them most. Quince shoppers say the sheets hold up well in the wash, keeping their shape and soft feel—making these organic sheets worth every penny.

Material: 100% organic cotton flannel
Weight/GSM: 5.3 oz.
Colors: white and light grey

Pros

  • Certified organic cotton
  • Lightweight and super breathable
  • Brushed on both sides
  • Durably made

Cons

  • Not pre-shrunk
  • Limited color options

Best heavyweight

Coyuchi, Cloud Brushed™ Organic Flannel Sheets
Coyuchi, Cloud Brushed™ Organic Flannel Sheets — $214.00

Originally $268, now $214

Sizes available: Twin-Cal King

For intensely cold winters, you’re going to want this Coyuchi flannel sheet set on your side. The weighty, 6 oz. sheets are made of 100 percent organic cotton that’s been brushed for a softer, cozier feel—perfect for keeping you toasty on the coldest winter nights. Thanks to their thicker texture, Coyuchi flannel sheets are more durable than other flannel sheets on the market, so you can sleep soundly (and snugly) knowing they’ll last you plenty of winters to come. In fact, they’re so good that you’ll be tempted to get multiple sets. “These sheets are just perfect! They are so soft and welcoming but also substantial in weight and clearly designed to last,” writes one 5-star reviewer, “I plan on purchasing a second set for the guest bedroom.”

Material: 100% cotton flannel
Weight/GSM: 6 oz. (about 200 GSM)
Colors: 7 color options

Pros

  • Very warm, perfect for intense winters
  • Durably made
  • Super soft feel

Cons

  • Too warm for year-round use, according to reviews

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Our editors independently select these products. Making a purchase through our links may earn Well+Good a commission.

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