Egyptian Cotton vs. Regular Cotton: What’s the Difference?

A stack of striped Egyptian cotton sheets from Royal Egyptian Bedding.

Egyptian cotton is famous around the world and is known as the finest of all cotton. It is known for its softness, strength, and overall luxurious feel. But have you ever wondered what sets apart Egyptian cotton from regular cotton?

Let’s take a look at Egyptian cotton vs. regular cotton, and the differences between them.

Superior Quality

When it comes to the difference between Egyptian cotton and regular cotton, there are three measurable qualities to look at:

  • Suppleness: Egyptian cotton is rich and dense, giving it a sense of heaviness. Yet it is not stiff or heavy. Instead, it is incredibly soft and moves freely, giving it a supple quality that feels good in the hands and great on the skin.
  • Softness: We mentioned our cotton’s incredible softness. When it comes to Egyptian cotton vs. regular cotton, Egyptian cotton is softer because of the high quality of the cotton fibers. Cheap cotton often feels flimsy, almost like a wrapper, especially fresh out of the wash. In contrast, Egyptian cotton always retains its softness.
  • Durability: Egyptian cotton is known for its durability. Its long, robust fibers give the material great strength, allowing the cotton to resist damage over years of use.

Cotton From the Nile River Valley

Egyptian cotton comes from Egypt. Specifically, it comes from the fertile Nile River Valley, one of the ancient homes of human civilization. For thousands of years, Egyptian cotton was traded around the world, where it was mainly the exclusive luxury of nobles and royals.

The main physical characteristic that sets apart Egyptian cotton vs. cotton, in general, is the length of the cotton fibers. Before being spun into yarn or thread, the raw cotton fibers are much shorter, known as “staples.” These staples have different lengths, depending on various conditions. In Egypt, the hot, arid climate, together with the excellent irrigation of the Nile River, leads to a class of raw cotton fiber known as ELS, or “extra-long staple.” These fibers are 1¼ to 2½ inches long apiece, and they are the secret to Egyptian cotton’s superiority.

These ELS fibers are what give Egyptian cotton its strength, suppleness, softness, and durability. They also allow for extremely high single-ply thread counts, from which the highest-quality sheets and fabrics are made. At REB, our Egyptian cotton sheets feature thread counts as high as 1500. This is a key difference between Egyptian cotton and cotton in general: Only Egyptian cotton can offer such high thread counts in a single-ply weave.

Find Superior Egyptian Cotton at REB

Now that you better understand what sets apart Egyptian cotton vs. regular cotton, imagine transforming your bedroom into a place of luxury just like the royals of old. Explore Royal Egyptian Bedding to find your favorite colors and styles of all our famous Egyptian cotton bedding products:
Mix and match your favorites today.

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