I Tried Sleeping on a Mulberry Silk Pillowcase—And I’m Never Going Back to Cotton

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Our health editor tested this mulberry silk pillowcase and spoke with hair experts to find out its real benefits.

As a health editor, I’m going to admit something that now seems quite foolish: I’ve always assumed that pillowcases are pretty much the same. Sure, some feel softer against your face or have a pretty pattern, but beyond that, they’re all just…material that covers your pillow, right? Wrong. When I think about all the hours I press my hair and face against a pillowcase now, it’s obvious that the material matters.

When I swapped my cotton pillowcase for the mulberry silk pillowcase from Fishers Finery, I was surprised how quickly I noticed a difference in my hair. It’s clear that silk pillowcases are far and away the superior choice for beauty sleep. I honestly don’t know how I suffered through cotton blend options for 44 years. (And if you’re upgrading your bedding, it might also be time for a new mattress.)

What is a mulberry silk pillowcase?

There are many silk and satin pillowcases on the market, but not all of them follow the luxurious standards Fishers Finery has set. The brand is known for its fine silk products, which is why the brand uses mulberry silk—it’s the highest quality available, known for its long individual fibers and uniform color, and is made by silkworms who dine only on mulberry leaves.

The mulberry silk pillowcase is made from 100% long-strand, grade 6A pure mulberry silk. The term “momme” is the unit used to measure the weight of silk thread, and this version has 25mm. So, 25mm means that it has 25 pounds per 100 yards of silk. The company also offers 19mm and 30mm styles.

How I tested my mulberry silk pillowcase

When I opened the Fishers Finery package, I was delighted to feel the slippery and cool material against my fingertips. There’s an oversized envelope-style flap to help keep your pillow securely inside. Beyond that, the pillowcase is rather nondescript, without any design elements.

Normally, I would first wash any new bedding before using it. However I quickly noted that the care instructions suggest dry cleaning or hand washing. I didn’t have it in me to fuss around with either of those options so late at night, so I decided to throw caution to the wind and sleep on it fresh out of the plastic wrap.

As I lay down in my DreamCloud mattress, I let my face hit the cool silk first. It felt amazing, almost regal, and I immediately decided my next major splurge would be silk bedsheets. Then, I turned on my back, so my hair was laying directly on the pillow. My fiancé laughed as I began gliding my head back and forth, in awe of how my hair moved with the fabric instead of creating the static and tangles I was used to enduring. I knew right away this slipperiness would help preserve a blowout, which is priceless. In the morning, I was not disappointed.

When I awoke, I was blown away by the lack of pillowcase-induced creases on my face and how my hair hardly needed a brushing because there were no tangles. And there were no stray hairs on the pillowcase (usually there are a handful), which signaled that my old cotton version must have caused friction-induced breakage. Plus, my pillowcase was still cool to the touch, which is unheard of for this hot sleeper. Heck, my hair even felt softer. I was instantly hooked. (Weighted eye masks are another luxurious sleep aid.)

Mulberry silk pillowcase benefits

Fishers Finery Mulberry Silk PillowcaseJill Schildhouse for rd.com

One of the benefits of mulberry silk is that it’s hypoallergenic, which makes it an excellent choice for anyone with sensitive skin. Silk is also breathable and stays cool (as I can attest to, and I live in Phoenix where it’s always hot). Finally, because silk is so smooth, this pillowcase reduces friction.

“Silk pillowcases drastically reduce friction by comparison to other types of materials such as microfiber or cotton,” says William Gaunitz, FWTS, certified trichologist and founder of Advanced Trichology. “Microfiber and cotton can produce friction while you’re sleeping for eight hours and decrease tugging which could lead to more excessive hair loss than needed.”

He says that silk pillowcases also increase scalp hydration because they don’t absorb moisture. “Increased natural hydration on the scalp will lead to less intrinsic inflammation and ultimately better body and volume to the hair.”

Pros:

There are many pros to choosing a Fishers Finery silk pillowcase for your slumber, including these features:

  • Hypoallergenic and stays cool
  • Reduces hair damage caused by friction
  • Helps skin retain moisture
  • 100% pure mulberry silk
  • Envelope enclosure keeps your pillow securely inside—no annoying zippers
  • Ample sizing for standard, queen, or king pillows (be sure to choose the right size)

Cons:

You’d almost have to nitpick find any cons with this pillowcase, but some consumers might not like:

  • Dry clean or hand wash recommended, or machine wash on gentle in a mesh bag
  • It’s pricier than traditional cotton/blend pillowcases (though more affordable than some higher-end brands.)
  • Some beauty routines, like slugging, may stain or ruin silk

What hair experts have to say about silk pillowcases

Almost everyone can benefit from making the switch to a mulberry silk pillowcase (alongside these 20 natural ways to have great hair for less). “People suffering from traction alopecia, telogen effluvium, or inflammatory scalp conditions like psoriasis may benefit drastically from utilizing silk pillowcases,” says Gaunitz. “These conditions would respond positively to the lack of tension on the hair and the more natural hydration that the silk pillowcase could provide.”

And those with curls or who are prone to frizz stand to gain plenty, too. “Natural and curly hair texture tends to be a bit more dry than other types of hair, says Samantha Gradilone of Fabio Scalia Salon. “Unlike cotton, silk doesn’t absorb moisture, so a lot of my clients who have very dry hair would benefit from trying a silk pillowcase. A lot of people don’t know it, but cotton can actually strip the natural moisture and oils in your hair.”

Gradilone also recommends silk pillowcases to her clients with hair extensions, because “the number one enemy of hair extensions is tangles and knots.” With a silk pillowcase, the hair can glide over the silk and avoid any unwanted hair tangles.

What Amazon reviewers think about the mulberry silk pillowcase

It seems I’m not alone in my love for Fishers Finery’s mulberry silk pillowcase. “Many so-called silk pillowcases on Amazon are, in fact, polyester,” says verified purchaser CCAT. “This one is truly made of silk.”

And, according to Lunice A. Clay, “I decided to get Fishers rather than the much-more-expensive cult leader, and I think it was a good choice. I enjoy waking up with good-looking hair.”

Final verdict

It’s quite possible (read: it definitely happened) that I’ve already ordered a second mulberry silk pillowcase, so that I can have one ready to use while the other is being laundered. I simply cannot imagine switching back to the cotton blend options I’m used to because there’s just too much to love about this silky superstar. I’m experiencing less hair breakage, but even the cooling sensation alone would be enough to sway me. And when I pair this pillowcase with my luxurious silk pajamas, it’s just the best sensation ever.

Where to buy Fishers Finery Mulberry Silk Pillowcase

My favorite mulberry silk pillowcase can be found on Amazon, priced at $49.99 for a single standard case. It’s also on Walmart and the Fisher’s Finery website.

Mulberry Pillowcase via merchant

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Jill Schildhouse
As Health Editor at Reader's Digest, Jill Schildhouse is an expert in health and wellness, beauty, consumer products and product reviews, travel, and personal finance. She has spent the last 20 years as an award-winning lifestyle writer and editor for a variety of national print and digital publications.