We spent weeks testing a bevy of weighted blankets to find the best for a variety of scenarios.
Seven hours straight of quality sleep is, for some, a mythical thing, pursued like the last unicorn on the planet. Imaginary. Something people talk about wanting but rarely experience for themselves.
We need sleep in order to function properly. The average adult needs seven or more hours of sleep per night, and children and teens need anywhere from 10 to 13 hours of sleep, depending on their age.
One sleep aid that has gone from relatively unknown outside medical circles to readily available is a weighted blanket. It’s thought that the pressure from the weighted blankets soothes the nervous system and helps calm anxiety.
Weighted blankets might also make a difference for people with insomnia for the same reasons, but you don’t necessarily have to have a sleep disorder or anxiety issue to improve your sleep with a weighted blanket. I had never used a weighted blanket before testing these, and had never had a problem falling asleep, so I wasn’t sure if using a weighted blanket was for me.
What I found after weeks of testing was that even those of us who are good sleepers can benefit from a weighted blanket, and I will likely never sleep without one again. I normally wake up at least once in the night, but with each of the weighted blankets I tested, I slept straight through the night, for seven to eight hours at a time. Between all of the models I tested, I’m pretty sure there’s at least one of them that could make your nights easier.
Manufacturers all recommend using a blanket that is approximately ten percent of your body weight, and most came in 12, 15, or 20 pound weights.
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Best Overall: Gravity Weighted Blanket
This is the original weighted blanket, more or less. Gravity made a big splash in 2017 with a Kickstarter campaign and by 2018 the Gravity Weighted Blanket was named as one of TIME Magazine’s Best Invention. So the folks at Gravity know what they’re doing, and they have science to back it up. According to their website, 76% of people reported falling asleep faster with the weighted blanket, and that was absolutely the case for me. One night I fell asleep so fast, I still had my phone in my hand.
Its evenly distributed weight was comforting, and the microfiber cover was really plush. It did run a little hot, so I had to make some adjustments in the rest of my bedding (and the rate of my ceiling fan) to accommodate that added warmth.
However, removing the outer layer to run it through the washing machine was a bit of a trick. Actually, removing it wasn’t the issue, and it machine washed and dried beautifully, but reassembling the outer cover to the inside weighted blanket (which should only be spot-cleaned and air-dried) took some thinking and planning. It has zippers on three sides, and ties and buttons on the fourth, and after some consideration and a couple of trial-and-error situations, I figured it out and it came back together as it should.
Best for Hot Sleepers: Gravity Cooling Weighted Blanket
The aptly named Cooling Weighted blanket is from the same brand as our best overall and comes in six colors. With any of them it offers a pretty sheen, but it’s more than just good looking.
It’s one of the few products that I’ve tried that promises cooling and actually delivers. I’m a huge fan of lots of covers, and this kept me cool and breezy even with a comforter on top of it. In fact, it almost got a little too cool one night. The outer layer is made with 100% Lyocell, which comes from eucalyptus, which is what gives it the cooling properties. Eucalyptus products wick away more moisture and are three times more breathable than cotton. Plus the cover is OEKO-TEX certified and non-toxic. In terms of weight distribution across the blanket, it was extremely well-balanced and evenly weighted.
Like the original Gravity weighted blanket, taking off the cover and washing is exactly the same, and requires a little thought to get it back together. It did wash well without any noticeable wear and tear on the outer blanket. It only has a 30 day return window, however, so choose your size and weight carefully. If you’re a hot sleeper, prone to night sweats, or just generally enjoy sleeping in a cooler environment, this might be the blanket for you.
Best Budget Weighted Blanket: Sleep Number TrueTemp
This was the first blanket I tried and ultimately it’s a really solid, quality blanket that gave me a good night’s sleep. The outer cover, the “True Temp technology,” felt at first a little like the exterior of a sleeping bag. That makes sense, as the cover is designed to attract and remove moisture to keep you from getting too hot. It wasn’t as cooling as the Gravity option, but it was comfortable enough. It’s available in 12 or 20 pounds, which seems like a pretty large difference, but Sleep Number recommends using whichever weight is closer to ten percent of your body weight, so you’ll likely have to adjust up or down. With a 100 night return or exchange window, if the first size doesn’t work you have plenty of time to exchange for a new one—that is a better period than what you get from Gravity as well..
The outer cover is 100% polyester, so as expected it washed and dried fairly quickly. Putting it back together was a bit of a challenge, as there are what felt like 400 ties to keep the blanket in place that must be both undone and then re-tied after washing. It helped to use the California or burrito method of attaching the outer cover, just because of the sheer number of ties securing the inside to the outer cover. Once it’s back together, the inner blanket does not shift or move, keeping the blanket evenly balanced.
The Sleep Number has a lot of good qualities, a great warranty and return policy, and at around $140, it’s less expensive than most of the other blankets, which in our book makes it a great choice for smaller budgets.
Best for Easy Care: Baloo Weighted Blanket
The Baloo Weighted Blanket is so much like a regular blanket you almost forget it’s weighted. It’s very well balanced and really breathable, made from 100% cotton inside and out. I don’t know how they do that and have it weighted, but they do.
Better yet, it’s washable as a whole blanket, which eliminates the need to remove a cover which I appreciated. It does come with ties and Baloo sells a linen duvet cover for the blankets, if you’d like to dress it up.
Baloo is a woman-founded and operated company, and the blanket arrived in a cute canvas bag complete with instructions on how to best introduce and use a weighted blanket. The full/queen blanket is designed to sit on top of the bed, and not overhang, which for me meant a neater look when making the bed in the morning.
They have a free exchange program, and a no-excuse-needed 30 day return policy. Of all the blankets tried, this one will probably stay on my bed for a long time and when it comes to washing it, there is no question this is the simplest.
Best for Kids: Baloo The Mini
While there are no children in our home, we loved this little blanket and used it frequently for naps on the couch. Like its bigger sibling, The Mini comes in an adorable canvas bag with thorough instructions on how and when to introduce a weighted blanket. It’s only nine pounds and made from a breathable cotton that’s vegetable dyed so it doesn’t contain harmful chemicals. Like the full size Baloo, this is easily washed and is more manageable at just 40- x 60-inches. That also allows it to try quickly on a low heat.
It’s important to pay attention to the suggestions for use when it comes to kids and weighted blankets. Baloo recommends children be at least 50 pounds and have the dexterity to remove the blanket themselves, without any assistance. As a nice touch, if you review and/or tag Baloo on social media, the company donates $5 to a nonprofit that provides clean, new pajamas and a book to kids in need.
Prices are accurate and items are in stock at the time of publishing.