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Thread Count (TC) & Ply)

Thread count (TC) refers to the number of fibers woven together in one-square-inch of fabric. It can range from 80 to 1200. The higher the thread count, which requires finer threads, the desirable smoother and softer the fabric. However finer threads mean the threads a slightly more delicate, so one must use proper care when washing.

An other important criteria is ply. Ply refers to the number of single fibers twisted together before it is woven into a fabric. By twisting two fibers together, the thread count can be doubled. Some 1000TC sets of sheets are actually 330TC 3-ply or 250TC 4-ply. The higher the ply, the heavier and thicker the sheet and the greater chance of the fabric pilling (little balls). The highest thread count that can be woven into a single ply is 500TC. All 1000TC sheets are at least 2-ply.

In summary, if softness is desired, a high thread count and one ply is required but at a higher cost. If one prefers a heavier sheets, a high thread count with a high ply (3-4) is required. They will also keep one warmer. If one chooses a higher thread count, proper care must be done to prevent pilling. Anything above 300TC is usually soft enough for most people. If one prefers a lighter sheet, select 250 to 500TC range with a single ply.

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