This year, we’re on a mission to make our bedrooms as snuggly as possible, and that, of course, starts with a down comforter. So we scoured the internet for the crème de la crème of bedding for every kind of sleeper—from the allergy-prone to the perpetually cold. Below, the 11 best down comforters (including alternative options) for sleep and style. But first, what exactly is down? We explain.
The 11 Best Down Comforters for Every Type of Sleeper
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DOWN AND DOWN ALTERNATIVE: WHAT’S THE DIFFERENCE?
Down Comforters are filled with, you guessed it, down, a light and fluffy layer of thin feathers found on ducks and geese, providing natural insulation. Not only is down filling incredibly plush, but it’s also “lightweight and lofty, so you don’t feel weighed down by your comforter or overly hot,” says McKenzie Hyde, a certified sleep coach at Amerisleep.com.
Down Alternative Comforters are filled with synthetic materials like polyester, cotton or rayon to mimic the insulating properties of down. Alternative versions are also better options for “cruelty-free shoppers and allergy sufferers,” according to Hyde. They can also be more budget-friendly.
WHICH IS BETTER: DUCK DOWN OR GOOSE DOWN?
Goose down technically has a better fill power because it’s larger than duck down, and therefore more insulating. However, the difference in size is so minute that you probably wouldn’t be able to tell what’s what. Hyde says, “It’s better to find a high-quality down comforter from a reliable brand rather than focusing on which type of bird fill the comforter has.”
WHAT IS ETHICAL DOWN?
To make sure a product is ethically made, look for anything certified by The Responsible Down Standard (RDS). Basically, RDS certification ensures that the down comes from animals who weren’t subjected to unnecessary harm. Our advice? Most bedding manufacturers will avoid disclosing how their down is procured RDS certified or not. So if the idea of duck or goose feathers doesn’t sit well with you, we recommend you stick with the down alternative.
HOW DO I CHOOSE A QUALITY DOWN COMFORTER?
Fill Power: Fill power refers to how much down, or synthetic material, is in your comforter. It’s measured on a scale from 300 to 900. The higher the fill power, the more firm and insulated the bedding. We recommend choosing something between 500 and 750—depending on the type of fill (see below).
Weight: “Down is naturally very light, and high fills won’t feel heavy or constricting,” according to Hyde. This means you can opt for a higher down fill power and still have a lightweight comforter. Down alternative comforters, on the other hand, are heavier because they require much more filling. Any comforter with a 750+ fill power will be heavier, but we recommend keeping the down-alternative fill in the 500-700 range (especially if you’re a hot sleeper).
Materials: If you’re looking for a comforter that will be extremely plush or soft to the touch, down filling is the way to go. But, as Hyde notes, they are prone to trapping allergens such as dust mites, pollen, and skin cells, triggering allergic reactions such as rashes, itchy eyes and throat, and postnasal drip. Down alternative comforters, however, use a synthetic filling that is less likely to trap allergens. If you’re someone who suffers from allergies or skin irritations, we’d recommend going with a down alternative
Price and Durability: Pure, white goose-down comforters tend to be the most expensive because of their breathability and special insulating properties. While most comforters will use a blend of goose down and duck down feathers, most products with a higher percentage of down are pricier. Plus, high-quality down comforters have a lifespan of ten to fifteen years and do not compress over time. Otherwise, down alternative is usually less expensive but synthetically-filled comforters will need to be replaced within three to five years.
HOW TO WASH A DOWN COMFORTER
Simply put, you should never wash a down comforter at home. A down comfortable typically requires professional cleaning two to three times a year. As for an alternative down comforter? Chances are you can machine wash at home.
THE BEST DOWN COMFORTERS: WINNERS, AT A GLANCE:
- Best Overall: Brooklinen All-Season Down Comforter
- Best Goose Down: Riley White Goose Down Comforter
- Best Down-Alternative: Parachute Down Alternative Duvet Insert
- Best Cooling: Casper Humidity Fighting Duvet
- Best Duvet Insert: Tuft & Needle Down Duvet Insert
- Best Splurge: Coyuchi Three Season Down Duvet Insert
- Best Budget: LINENSPA Down Alternative Comforter
- Best for Sensitive Skin: The Buffy Cloud Comforter
- Best Lightweight: Slumber Cloud Lightweight Cooling Comforter
- Best on Amazon: EASELAND Quilted Down Alternative Comforter
- Best Versatility: The Company Store LaCrosse Down Duvet Insert
BEST DOWN COMFORTERS, REVIEWED:
- Pros: Fluffy, lightweight, soft, hypoallergenic, reasonably priced for real down
- Cons: Not RDS-certified
This down comforter has gotten rave reviews across the board, and after testing it out for myself, I can see what all the hype is about. Available in three weights, Lightweight, All-season and Ultra-warm, the All-Season's 700-fill-power of duck down provides that Goldilocks medium loft—not too thin and not too thick. I loved this option because it felt lightweight and breathable, but still plush enough to look like it came straight out of a Nancy Meyers's film. The filling was simultaneously insulating and breathable, and I was impressed by how warm this one kept me—without weighing me down. Plus, the all-season option totally gave my bed the cozy, layered look I was going for.
Best Goose Down
- Pros: Fluffy, RDS-certified, ultra-warm, breathable
- Cons: Expensive, not ideal for hot sleepers
Disclaimer: This comforter will make getting up and out of bed infinitely more challenging. Riley’s All-Season, pure goose-down comforter is by far the coziest option on this list. It has a 700-fill-power for unparalleled fluffiness, and its 100-percent sateen cover shell creates an elegant, tailored look. Plus, the box-stitch construction ensures the filling doesn’t shift or distribute unevenly, even if you move a bunch in the night. While the comforter was surprisingly breathable, given the fill power, I wouldn’t recommend purchasing it if you run hot, like me. After an hour of tossing and turning, I resorted to sleeping on top of this one. However, if you’re looking for something that will keep you warm and snug for colder temperatures, I’d put this at the top of your list.
- Pros: Great fluff factor for an alternative option, hypoallergenic, machine washable
- Cons: Expensive for down alternative, still heavier than real down
Filled with 100-percent hypoallergenic material, Parachute’s down alternative has all of the fluff, breathability and insulation of their down duvet insert without the, ya know, down. What makes this one unique is how expertly its microfiber filling mimics the qualities of real down. The All-Season option has an excellent weight-to-fluff ratio, and its 100-percent cambric cotton shell is easy on the skin. One reviewer describes it as “delightfully warm without being hot” and having “a solid weight without feeling heavy (nothing like a weighted blanket).” Oh, and did we mention that it’s machine washable?
- Pros: RDS-certified, cooling, lightweight, moisture-wicking, soft
- Cons: Low fill power, expensive
Fluffy? Check. Lightweight? Yup. Comfortable? Beyond. This comforter did exactly what it was supposed to do (and so much more). When I tested this number, I felt as if I was wrapped in a cloud. Its layer of Merino wool adds a cooling technology to help wick away moisture, block humidity and regulate temperature throughout the night. It also has a 100-percent cotton shell that remained crisp and cool, and its seven-pocket construction prevented the down from shifting or decompressing. Plus it fluffed right back up after I sat on it. My only complaint was that the Lightweight option was not very lofty, and I was disappointed by how thin it was compared to the photos.
Best Duvet Insert
- Pros: Affordable for real down, lightweight, soft, RDS-certified
- Cons: Low fill power
Looking to recreate that fancy hotel aesthetic? Tuft & Needle’s got it down. This comforter was fluffy, breathable and its down filling kept me warm without being too warm. The medium-loft insert fit their percale duvet cover like a glass slipper and provided the crisp, clean hotel look I have always wanted. Plus, in addition to having a lightweight 650-fill power, this insert is OEKO-TEX and RDS-certified, which means it’s consciously made and free of harmful chemicals. However, I will say that I’d classify their medium-density comforter as more of a lightweight compared to others. If you’re looking for something super warm, I’d go with a comforter that has a higher fill.
- Pros: Lightweight but warm, fluffy, RDS-certified, temperature-regulating
- Cons: Still not as fluffy as a 700+ fill power
The Coyuchi has a lightweight, box-stitched design to keep the down in place and prevent deflation. It also helps regulate body temperature and evenly distributes heat throughout the night. Because of this design, the manufacturer uses a lower fill power (600) to achieve a higher loft. Essentially, this is the fluffiest, lightest weight option on this list. Plus, according to the brand, it’s RDS-certified and “filled with double-washed down from an Indiana duck farm,” where “birds are humanely raised [and] down is carefully processed,”
7. Linenspa Down Alternative Comforter
- Pros: Hypoallergenic, lightweight, under $50, machine washable, cooling
- Cons: Low fill power
With over 6,000 positive reviews on Amazon, this lightweight, 300-fill-power comforter earns “hotel bed” finish points. The down alternative filling is made from hypoallergenic materials that won’t irritate the skin, and the little loops in each corner prevent sliding and shifting when used on a duvet cover. One reviewer writes, “I wash [this comforter] once a week in my regular washer and dryer, and it’s only gotten better. It’s so soft, and lightweight yet keeps you warm. It’s great for both hot & cold weather. The best way to describe it is like a marshmallow or cloud.”
Best for Sensitive Skin
- Pros: Durable, under $200, lightweight, cruelty-free, hypoallergenic
- Cons: Low fill power
ICYM: Down alternative filling is a safer option when it comes to allergens and irritants, and this comforter is *the go-to* for sensitive skin. The PET, BPA-free filling is made from 100-percent recycled fiber, and its soft, eucalyptus fabric shell is hypoallergenic, lightweight and breathable—so it’s ideal for hot sleepers with allergies. In a PureWow100 review, editor Dena Silver says, “If you’re looking for a life-changing blanket that will feel as if you’re sleeping in an air conditioning unit on the hottest day of the year, this is not it. But if you’re looking for a lightweight duvet that works for every season, is eco-friendly and cozy AF—and won’t make you sweat in your sleep—the Buffy is it.”
- Pros: Lightweight, cooling, hypoallergenic, machine washable
- Cons: Expensive for down alternative, low fill power, not very warm
If you want something that looks fluffy without waking up in a pool of sweat, this NASA-approved comforter should be at the top of your list. Its temperature-regulating technology features a ClimaDry fiberfill that regulates heat and moisture, and the 100-percent cotton cover gives the blanket its breathability. One reviewer says, “We were looking for a lightweight comforter that wouldn’t be too hot during the summer months, and Slumbercloud delivered! Also, I love the bands in the corners that make it easy to tie to the duvet.”
Best on Amazon
- Pros: Warm, fluffy, machine washable, under $100
- Cons:Traps heat
Looking for something warm, machine washable and affordable for the colder months? This down alternative comforter is your best bet. Its premium polyfill filling is irritant-free and durable, and it promises to keep you warm without weighing you down. The comforter has a 4.7-star rating with over 22,700 reviews, and one person writes, “It’s very soft and fluffy [and] does not wrinkle easily. I’ve washed and dried it numerous times over the past several months, and it has held up wonderfully.”
- Pros: Four color options, RDS-certified, fluffy, warm, breathable
- Cons: Heavier than other options
Finally, a comforter that’s thick enough to keep cold sleepers warm and hot sleepers cool. That’s right, its 300-thread-count cotton sateen shell provides a cooling effect, while the RDS-certified down keeps things warm and cozy. It also has a medium fill-power to prevent things from getting too hot or too cold throughout the night. Not to mention that it comes in four colorways and has a double-needle top stitch that looks chic without a duvet cover. “I was so impressed by how soft this comforter is. It's not heavy but has a decent amount of weight to it. It's not bulky or super thick [and] the material doesn't seem to bunch. The solid design makes it perfect for any room,” one reviewer raves.