A great set of percale sheets is the perfect bedding option for hot sleepers and anyone who wants to stay cool on warm nights. Percale sheets not only stand out into their cooling, perfect-for-summer qualities but also their durability, due of the nature of their weave.
"The percale weave is a basic over-under weave," says Anna Brakefield, co-founder of Red Land Cotton. "It’s woven tightly but the nature of the over-under is going to allow for more airflow." She adds that other weave styles, such as a sateen finish, do not allow for as much airflow because there are more fibers on the top of the weave, which also results in a higher thread count.
We researched and tested percale sheets from all the top brands, evaluating quality, texture, breathability, and value. Our best overall pick, the Parachute Percale Venice Set, is made from durable Egyptian cotton that feels cool to the touch, looks crisp, and gets softer with each wash.
Here are the best percale sheets.
Best Overall: Parachute Percale Venice Set
Softens after each wash
Top sheet is optional
Good color selection
Wrinkles after washing
What do buyers say? 81% of 2,100+ Parachute reviewers rated this product 4 stars or above.
After testing numerous top options, we chose the Parachute Percale Venice Sheet Set as our favorite. Our testing showed this high-end set's durability and continued comfort as it softens after washing. It earned 5 out 5 stars in all our main categories, including durability, breathability, and quality.
These breathable sheets will keep you cool if you get toasty at night. The percale fabric is 100 percent long-staple Egyptian cotton—widely regarded as the best cotton available. They're cool to the touch and help wick away sweat while still feeling soft and luxurious on your skin.
The Venice Sheet Set comes with two pillowcases, a fitted sheet, a duvet cover, and an optional top sheet. You can select from various sizes and colors, including sand, light gray, and moss green. While this option is more expensive than others, the high quality justifies the splurge.
Best Organic : Coyuchi Organic Crinkled Percale Sheets
Wide range of sizes
Feel breathable through the night
Multiple color options
Many varieties of cotton are treated with pesticides and other chemicals during growth and manufacturing. If you strive to keep chemicals out of your home, you’ll definitely prefer a set of organic cotton sheets, such as the Coyuchi organic crinkled percale sheets.
The 100 percent organic cotton sheets are GOTS, Fair Trade Standard, and Made Safe certified, so they've met rigorous standards during the harvesting and manufacturing process. The sheets have a cool and super-smooth percale weave, and they come in muted green and blue shades, along with crisp, classic white.
Our tester loved how these sheets felt high-quality, while remaining breathable throughout the night. Though she found them to be not necessarily silky, the sheets felt natural and comfortable. However, she also noticed that the sheets were heavier than competitors and showed slight shrinkage after washing them.
Best High Thread Count: Snowe Percale Sheet Set
Timeless color options
Warmer than other options
If you're after hotel-quality sheets, the Snowe Percale Sheet Set may be the bedding of your dreams. The sheets are made from Italian-milled, 100 percent long-staple cotton with a 500 thread count, and they feel lightweight, crisp, and luxurious.
With each set, you get a flat sheet, fitted sheet, and two pillowcases, and the fitted sheet is generously sized to fit even the deepest mattresses. These percale sheets come in five muted colors, including classic white, slate blue, and ash gray, and all sizes except for twin.
Keep in mind that during home testing, our tester found the Snowe sheets to hold heat very well—she even said she and her partner started getting sweaty in the middle of the night.
Best Egyptian Cotton: Sferra Grande Hotel Sheets
Each piece can be ordered a la carte
Elegant embroidered stitching
Softness improves with each wash
The Sferra Grande Hotel sheets feel crisp without being scratchy—which is a common complaint of some inferior percale sheet sets. Instead, these breathable Egyptian cotton sheets have a soft hand that only improves with washing. Be forewarned, however, that these sheets are prone to wrinkling and may need to be ironed if you want to achieve an ultra-crisp look.
Available with a simple yet elegant double row of satin stitching around the cuff of the flat sheet, this Egyptian sheet set adds a classy touch to your bedroom and is a great choice for quality sheeting. Each piece is available a la carte, allowing you to build your ultimate bedding set from standard selections like a flat sheet, fitted sheet, and pillowcases.
Best Color Selection: L.L.Bean 280-Thread-Count Pima Cotton Percale Sheet Set
Comfortable right out of the package
Doesn't pop off mattress corners
Good range of color options
Fitted sheet runs large
Inexpensive percale sheets are often made from a cotton-polyester blend, which can make them less breathable. If you’re looking for 100 percent cotton sheets that will wick moisture away and keep you cool all night, your best option may be the 280-Thread-Count Pima Cotton Percale Sheet Set from L.L.Bean.
According to our tester, the pima cotton felt soft and smooth to the touch. She noted that the sheets hugged her body perfectly yet slid comfortably when she tossed and turned, without bunching. And after a few washes, she reported no pilling or roughness to the fabric.
This sheet set comes with a flat sheet, a fitted sheet with a 15-inch pocket, and two pillowcases, and you can choose from a variety of colors. The fabric is made from 100 percent long-staple cotton, providing a smooth feel and long-lasting durability. These are great sheets for a great price—breathable, soft, comfortable, and durable.
Best Deep Pocket: Royal Hotel Abripedic Crispy Percale Sheets
Crisp and cool feel
Extra-deep fitted sheet
Lots of color options
No Twin or Full sizes
Certain mattresses, especially those with a pillowtop, can be quite thick, making it challenging to find sheets that will fit properly. If you have a deep mattress, your best option for percale sheets may be the Abripedic Crispy Percale Sheets, which boast an impressive 22-inch pocket on the fitted sheet.
This set comes with a flat sheet, fitted sheet, and two pillowcases, and you can choose from nine colors and queen or king sizes. The sheets are made from 100 percent cotton woven into a 300 thread count percale fabric for a crisp, breathable feel.
Overall, our top choice is the Brooklinen Classic Core Sheet Set (view at Brooklinen) because the high-quality sheets are crisp, cool, and cozy soft, and they're available in chic colors and patterns. For an extra-luxurious option, we love the Parachute Percale Venice Set, which is made from 100 percent long-staple Egyptian cotton and available in classic solid colors.
How We Tested
For this roundup, we researched the highest rated percale sheets from various brands to test. Then, we sent out our top picks to tester to wash, touch, and sleep on for almost a month. Our testers rated each pick on its quality, texture, breathability, and overall value on a scale of one to five. We then combined our tester's insights with our writer's independent research to compile this list.
What to Look for in Percale Sheets
Thread count simply means the number of threads, both vertical and horizontal, in a square inch of fabric. Percale is a tightly woven fabric, so thread counts for percale sheets tend to be on the higher end, ranging from around 250 to 500. Our testers noticed that a higher thread count signifies a softer sheet, but keep in mind that percale sheets with a super high thread count will be less breathable than those on the lower end of the range.
Type of cotton
Percale sheets should always feel cool and crisp, which our testers can confirm, but the type of cotton they're made from can have an impact on how breathable they are, as well as how affordable they are. Premium percale sheets are made from long-staple cotton. "When we talk about long-staple—it really just means that the length of the fiber is long enough to meet the spec that is long staple (1 and 1/4 inches)," says Brakefield. "We’re also looking at strength or how much weight can be put on it [the fiber] before it breaks." She adds that staple length of cotton, the longest available, is always going to be preferential when constructing a strong set of sheets and purchasing a finished product.
Sheets made from long-staple cotton will fray less, feel softer, and even wrinkle less. They also will be more expensive, but you can rest assured they'll last longer. Our top pick, the Parachute Percale Venice Sheet Set, is made of 100 percent Egyptian cotton and scored high marks for breathability and comfort in testing.
There are two main certifications to look out for when shopping for percale sheets: OEKO-TEX and GOTS. OEKO-TEX certification means that sheets meet the strict environmental, social, and health standards established by a global team of scientists and independent testing facilities. If sheets are OEKO-TEX certified, you can be sure they were responsibly manufactured and are free of harmful chemicals. GOTS stands for Global Organic Textile Standard. While some sheets may be labeled as "organic", that may just mean they were made with a certain percentage of organically-grown cotton. GOTS is the certification to look for if you're interested in buying sheets made with 100 percent organic cotton, and without the use of harmful chemicals or dyes.
What is percale?
Percale is a type of weave with a plain criss-cross (one thread over, one thread under) weave that results in a breathable, crisp fabric. In general, percale sheets have a stiffer, almost linen-like feel than cotton sateen or microfiber sheets, and they stay cool to the touch even during the hottest months of the year.
When buying percale sheets, does thread count matter?
In many cases, thread count can be a good indicator of the quality of percale sheets, but don't rely on it alone. Percale sheets are designed to be breathable, so even thread counts as low as 200 are acceptable. It's equally important to consider the type of cotton percale sheets are made from. Seek out percale sheets that specify they're made with long-staple cotton for superior softness and durability.
How do I wash percale sheets?
You should always check the tags for specific care instructions, but in general percale sheets can be washed in either cold or warm water (in moderation) without the use of fabric softeners or chlorine bleach, as these products can weaken cotton fibers over time. Percale cotton sheets should always be dried on a low heat setting and removed immediately after the cycle. Fold them, or smooth them out over your bed as soon as possible to help prevent wrinkles.
Why Trust The Spruce?
This article was edited and researched by Cristina Sanza, a lifestyle writer specializing in home products and organization hacks. To keep our product picks current, she reads customer reviews, third-party articles, and brand websites. She owns and loves the Snowe Percale Sheet Set, which is soft, crisp, and breathable. To make this list, she considered each style's wrinkle-resistance and cost, as well as a person's temperature needs. Emma Phelps, an Updates Writer for The Spruce, also offered additional support for this roundup by speaking to Anna Brakefield, the co-founder of Red Land Cotton, a family owned and operated bedding business. Brakefield offers a unique, expert perspective on bedding by having previous professional experience in marketing and branding, and working on her family's North Alabama cotton farm, which supplies all of the fibers for Red Land Cotton's bedding.