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What You Need to Know About Down Before You Buy a Duvet

Down comforters and down duvet covers are the expressions of luxury. However, before purchasing either a down comforter or a down duvet cover there are a few things to know such as “down fill power” and how the weight of down applies to the warmth of the comforter or duvet cover.

Twin, Full/Queen, King
Lightweight, Siberian Goose Down Filled

Twin, F/Q, K
Medium Weight, Siberian Goose Down Filled

Full/Queen, King
Heavy Weight Siberian Goose Down Filled

Just as salespeople will attempt to impress the consumer with talk of thread count when selling Egyptian cotton sheets and flannel weight when selling those warm flannel sheets and pillow cases, they will try to impress the buyer with terms and phrases that apply specifically to down.

The first phrase often heard is “down fill power.”  Here is what is necessary to know about down fill power.  To measure down fill power begin with one ounce of down.  Squeeze, mash, or do whatever is necessary to compress the one ounce of down as much as possible.  Then let it go or release it.  As the down releases it fluffs up.  When the down fluffs up or expands it will fill a space.  The space the expanded or fluffed up down fills — down fill power — is measured in cubic inchesThe number of cubic inches is called down fill power.

That is interesting, isn’t it?  It’s about as interesting as counting threads, single strands or twisted, to determine thread count.  However, down fill power will have a value when it is time to purchase a down comforter or down duvet cover.  The higher the down fill power, the higher the price and the higher the quality in most cases.

Celestial SupremeDown fill power creates loft which creates warmth.  Loft is the fluffy look of the comforter.  The higher the down fill power the fluffier the comforter.  It is said to have more loft.  Loft is important because the more loft the more space to hold warmth.  Think of the space as the air trapped between double paned windows.  High fill power and greater loft equals warmth.

A down comforter, duvet cover, or even a down jacket that has a down fill power of 575 is a good quality product.  Of course, if the fill power is 600 it is better and 700 is even better.  That’s the idea.

When the salesperson begins speaking of down fill power, loft and ounces do not be deterred.  Just remember that some comforters or duvets may have a higher fill power and less ounces than another.  This is solely to keep the comforter from becoming uncomfortably warm.