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When it comes to snuggly bedding, there's nothing quite like a down comforter. Sourced from the ultra-soft undercoat of ducks and geese, the fluffy fill material is naturally breathable and insulating with impressive sweat-wicking properties.
We rounded up options that fared well with our at-home testers in terms of material, warmth, weight, breathability, and care requirements. Our top pick is the Parachute Down Duvet Insert, which combines a lightweight feel with incredible warmth.
Here are the best down comforters available now.
Best Overall: Parachute Down Duvet Insert
Ethically sourced down
Choice of fill
Sateen shell is quiet
Sizes aren't exact
Who else recommends it? Forbes also picked the Parachute Down Duvet Insert.
What do buyers say? 400+ Parachute reviewers rated this 5 stars.
If you're looking for cloud-level comfort, Parachute's Down Duvet Insert is really the best of the bunch. It earned a perfect score from our at-home tester, who appreciated how lightweight it was for the warmth. With a silky-smooth sateen shell and high-quality European white down, this is a pick that will last you for many seasons to come. Plus, it's machine-washable and dryer-friendly—making for easier cleaning and upkeep.
With a fill power of 750, this duvet insert is on the higher end of the fill spectrum—our tester found it to be a little too insulating for temperatures over 60 degrees. If you're a hot sleeper or transitioning into the warmer months, we recommend trying the brand's lightweight version over the all-season. Whichever option you choose, you can count on unbeatable fluffiness and quality. We also appreciate that the ethically-sourced down fill meets the Textile Exchange's Responsible Down Standard (RDS).
Best Year-Round: Feathered Friends Bavarian 700 Down Comforter
Four weights available
Lightweight yet very warm
Tricky to clean
Not ideal for XL mattresses
Looking for something you can use all four seasons? You can't go wrong with the Bavarian Down Comforter from Feathered Friends. Available in four weights (summer, light, medium, and arctic), this is an option that can accommodate cold sleepers, hot sleepers, and everyone in between.
Our tester put the medium-weight option to the test, and found it to be surprisingly lightweight but also incredibly warm—potentially too warm for climates that don't see distinct seasonal weather changes. That said, it's a high-quality option that provides ample insulation without the weight.
Best Heavy: Brooklinen Down Comforter
Ethically sourced down
Three weights available
Treated with antimicrobials
Sizes aren't exact
Our home tester gave Brooklinen's Down Comforter a perfect 5-out-of-5 overall score, noting the super-soft shell and warm feather fill. In addition to the ethically sourced down, she liked that the long-staple cotton is Oeko-Tex certified and treated with antimicrobials to minimize allergies and odor-causing bacteria growth.
With a 750 fill power, the Ultra-Warm version (the heaviest of the brand's three options) is a great choice for winter or year-round use for cold sleepers. And thanks to the baffle-box construction, the fill should stay in place without clumping.
Best Splurge: L.L. Bean Permabaffle Box Goose Down Comforter, Warmer
Fill doesn't shift or bunch
Light yet warm
Generous return policy
Commercial washer recommended
If you can swing the steep price, you won't regret investing in the Permabaffle Box Comforter from L.L.Bean. Thanks to the baffle box construction, the fill doesn't shift or bunch up throughout the night. It's heavier in the middle and lighter around the edges, providing insulation where you need it without sacrificing weight.
With a mid-level 600 fill power, this comforter is made for colder nights—if you're a hot sleeper or live in a warmer climate, we'd recommend going with one of the brand's lighter weight options. With that being said, our tester found this to be an all-around excellent bed cover with a luxurious feel.
Best Organic: Coyuchi Winter Weight Down Duvet Insert
Lofty and breathable
GOTS-certified cotton shell
Potentially too warm for year-round use
If you gravitate toward organic bedding, we think you'll love Coyuchi's Winter Weight Duvet Insert. Our home tester gave it a 4.7 overall score on account of its generous fill power, slightly oversized design, and lofty, breathable feel.
This comforter has a GOTS-certified organic cotton shell and humanely sourced, double-washed duck down fill. While it's undoubtedly expensive, the luxurious quality is tough to beat.
Best Down-Alternative: Buffy Cloud Comforter
Made of recycled materials
Sizes aren't exact
For those open to down-alternative, we recommend the Buffy Cloud Comforter. Our tester gave it a score of 4.8 out of 5 for overall value, noting the supremely soft and breathable lyocell shell and lightweight yet cozy vegan fill.
Though the fill is polyester, it's made of recycled materials, and the lyocell comes from sustainably sourced eucalyptus trees. This down-alternative duvet is also machine-washable and suitable for year-round use.
Our best overall pick is the Parachute Down Duvet Insert, a luxurious, machine-washable bed cover with generous fill power and a long-staple cotton sateen shell. If you're looking for a down-alternative option, you can't go wrong with the Buffy Cloud Comforter, which earned high marks from our tester for its lightweight yet cozy feel.
How We Tested
We sent some of the top down comforters on the market to our team of home testers. After using it in their own beds for 2+ weeks, our testers assessed each option on the basis of fabric quality, softness, temperature regulation, and thickness. We combined their insights with our editors' and writer's independent research to bring you this list.
|The Best Down Comforters||Material||Fill Power||Certifications|
|Parachute Down Duvet Insert||Sateen cotton, down, feather fibers||750||Oeko-Tex, Responsible Down Standard|
|L.L. Bean Goose Down Comforter, Warmer||Cotton, goose down||600||Not listed|
|Feathered Friends Bavarian 700 Down Comforter||Cotton, goose down||700+||Oeko-Tex, Responsible Down Standard|
|Brooklinen Down Comforter||Long-staple cotton, down||750||DOWNMARK and Ultra-Fresh|
|Pottery Barn Hydrocool Down-Alternative Duvet Insert||Cotton, down-alternative (polyester)||Not listed||Not listed|
|Coyuchi Winter Weight Down Duvet Insert||Organic cotton, duck down||600||GOTS|
|Buffy Cloud Comforter||TENCEL lyocell, polyester fill||Not listed||Global Recycled Standard|
What to Look for in a Down Comforter
When down comforters list their "fill power," it refers to the amount of space one ounce of down feathers takes up. Fluffier feathers take up more room—and they also tend to be better insulators. That means that the higher the fill power, the fluffier your comforter will be, and the warmer it will keep you. A typical down comforter will have a fill power of about 600, so if you're a hot sleeper or live in a warmer climate you should look for a fill power between 500-600. If you want something really warm and fluffy, look for a comforter with a fill power closer to 700.
Beyond fill power, you'll also want to consider the types and proportion of down being used: "The industry standard for filling down comforters is 75 percent down clusters, as these are soft and long-lasting," says Ruthie Osswald, Senior Associate of Design and Product Development at Brooklinen.
Pay attention to the shell material of your comforter, too—this is what keeps the down from poking out over time, so you'll want to look for a tightly woven yet breathable material like cotton. This will keep your investment in top shape for years to come.
To ensure the quality of your down comforter, it's advisable to look for a handful of certifications. The Responsible Down Standard (RDS) ensures that down and feathers come from animals that have not been subjected to any unnecessary harm. The International Down and Feather Laboratory (IDFL) certification is another label to look out for— as the largest down testing lab in the world, they regularly collect samples from retailers and manufacturers to ensure that the down they're using meets global standards. Finally, DOWNMARK is a Canadian organization that certifies that down or feather products are genuine items that have been finished in Canada according to all standards.
How do you wash a down comforter?
Down comforters should be washed at least once a year to remove dirt, dust, and body oils, although those with allergies should wash them several times per year. Most can be washed in a large-capacity, front-loading washing machine using a mild detergent on a gentle, warm cycle. Adding clean tennis balls or wool dryer balls (if you're using tennis balls, insert them into clean white socks to make sure the neon green color doesn't transfer to your comforter) to the wash cycle can help increase agitation and prevent down from bunching up.
After the wash cycle is complete, check for any soap residue on the comforter. If any is present, wash the comforter again without using any detergent. Then, place the comforter in the dryer and dry on the lowest temperature setting for 30 minutes at a time, taking time to fluff the comforter between cycles. Expect this process to take two to three hours. Of course, always check the care instructions on your comforter before washing.
How long do down comforters last?
You can expect most down comforters to last between 10 to 15 years, but with proper care, a high-quality down comforter can last up to 20 years. Using a duvet cover will greatly extend the life of a down comforter, as it will allow you to wash it less frequently. Down is a fragile material that breaks down over time, so washing and drying down comforters on the gentlest cycles possible is imperative. Also be sure your comforter is completely dry before replacing it back into a duvet cover, as a damp down comforter can develop mildew easily.
How do you fluff a down comforter?
Ideally, down comforters should get a good fluffing every day when you make the bed. Just give each side of the comforter a quick shake to help redistribute the down inside and you'll prevent any clumps from forming. You can also fluff a down comforter in a dryer with an air fluff cycle. Most dryers have an air fluff setting, which tumbles without any heat, but if your dryer doesn't, you can select the lowest heat setting and tumble in 10-minute increments. Add the comforter and a few clean tennis or dryer balls (if you're using tennis balls, insert them into clean white socks to make sure the neon green color doesn't transfer to your comforter) to help prevent the down from clumping.
When should you throw out a down comforter?
While most down comforters last an average of 10 to 15 years, there are signs to look for that show when it’s time to toss your comforter. If you notice thinning in the down filling when you hold your comforter up to a light, it might be time to invest in a new down comforter. Down comforters tend to wear out first in the areas that get the most use—around the shoulders. Check that area of your comforter to see if the insulation value of your down comforter is decreasing. The outer shell of the comforter can also wear out. If you see the exterior shell is wearing thin, you might want to replace the comforter.
Why Trust The Spruce?
Theresa Holland is a seasoned commerce writer specializing in textiles, home design, and lifestyle. For this roundup, she interviewed a sleep expert and researched the key features of comforters, including fill power, shell material, and down certifications. Before landing on her final picks, she reviewed insights from our at-home testers, pored over user reviews, combed through product specs, and considered the price, weight, and construction of dozens of options. Theresa also spoke with Ruthie Osswald, Senior Associate of Design and Product Development at Brooklinen, for expert insight on what to look for in down comforters and how to properly care for them.
Theresa has been writing for The Spruce since 2019, where she covers bedding, furniture, and sleep essentials. You can read more of her stories on MyDomaine, Verywell, and Byrdie.
The 12 best duvet inserts and down comforters for transforming your bed into a cozy retreat. Forbes. https://www.forbes.com/sites/forbes-personal-shopper/2021/08/11/best-down-comforters/