How many times have you shopped for a duvet and cover by looking at the Tog rating and thread count, without actually knowing what either of these phrases mean? Choosing a duvet and a respective cover for it are choices that should be fully understood, seeing as they’re products we use every day.


The thread count describes how many threads are woven into one square inch of the fabric. If the individual threads are made from high quality materials, such as pure Egyptian cotton, then the thread will be finer and so the thread count higher. A high thread count not only gives your cover a more luxurious feel, but it also increases the durability of the material. Be wary of the materials being used though. Poor quality cotton can also be used to create a high thread count, yet it will still feel as rough as the lower thread count covers. As a general rule though, if quality materials have been used and the fabric feels good then a high thread count will make for a soft, smooth cover.  


The Tog rating gives people a rough estimate of how warm the duvet will be. Tog is also known as thermal resistance, as it describes the duvet’s ability to trap heat given off from the body. The higher the Tog rating the more heat the duvet will catch. The effectiveness of the duvet will largely depend on the materials it is made of. Cheaper materials are much more likely to have a lower Tog rating and thus give off more heat and leave you feeling colder in bed.


Natural fibres such as down and cotton are much better at trapping heat between there layers, meaning they don’t need to fill the duvet as much they do with synthetic alternatives. This is why certain natural duvets can feel lighter than synthetic ones yet still have high Tog ratings.


Picking the right duvet for the season is the difference between a comfortable night’s sleep and waking up shivering. Some people prefer to switch their duvets when the seasons change, opting for a light 3 – 4.5 tog duvet for the warmer summer months and replacing that with a heavier 13.5 - 15 tog duvet when the weather turns cold. There are medium duvets available however, which incorporate the best of both worlds by having a medium Tog rating of around 7 - 10.5.


A high Tog rating isn’t a guarantee of a truly warm bedtime though. Duvets are laboratory tested to get their Tog rating, and when you’re in bed different variables can occur, for example if you share a bed you’ve got to factor in the heat that the other person gives off, and the fact that your partner may steal the sheets. Duvet stealing spouses aside, for a great night’s sleep, wrap that duvet round you and keep warm this Christmas.