If you are like many people, you have probably wondered what a down comforter is, isn’t a comforter a comforter anyway? Well a down comforter is a bed covering that looks more or less like a thick, downy quilt, only that it comes filled with duck or geese down feathers, read more here. Down is generally soft, light, luxurious, and warm, making down comforters’ remarkably popular bedding today among homeowners who want to combine luxury, warmth, and coziness in one.
Most of the filling will lay flat with a level barb, however, a true down will not have a hard shaft, and the downy filaments will always have this ‘bushy’ look. This is what makes them so soft to touch, and gives them their competent ability to retain body heat while facilitating easy moisture escape. This is actually one of the best features of down comforters referred to as wicking.
Almost all down comforters will be labeled as per their fill power, a rating that explains the quality of the item itself. After the washing and sterilization process, an ounce of down will be measured to get the amount of space it will occupy per cubic inch. High end products in the market could have a fill rating of up to 700 cubic inches, and their affordable counterparts can have anything between 300-500 fill ratings.
The best down comforter i.e. what is considered an average in the industry should have a fill rating of circa 500. As is therefore expected, the higher the fill rating, the more warmth you should expect, the fluffier your comforter will be, and the more money you should be ready to cough out.
The other rating for down comforters in the market is fill weight, a measure of the bulk weight in the product and not a description of its quality. For the down material to remain evenly distributed in a product, manufacturers will use sewn-through stitching or baffle boxing. Sewn-through stitching is affordable than its baffle boxing counterpart, and will create a quilt-like appearance characterized by ‘pockets’ that will ensure the down remain in its rightful place.
However, since the stitching will be running from top to bottom, the fluffiness and level of insulation is compromised in the process. Baffle on the other hand is material found inside comforters that run from top to bottom perpendicularly, creating sort of ‘boxes’ that would hold the down in large interior compartments without compromising on the fluffiness. It is to be mentioned that some baffle in the market do not come fully sealed, meaning the down can shift once you start to use your down comforter. As such, when buying these products, it is always advisable to look for original baffle boxes, otherwise referred to as closed baffle or end-to-end baffle.