We independently research, test, review, and recommend the best products—learn more about our process. If you buy something through our links, we may earn a commission.
Breaking news: Your bedding may be affecting your looks. More specifically, we’re talking about your pillowcase and the fabric it’s made out of. Nothing against cozy cotton or flannel, but for gorgeous hair (and skin, for that matter) silk takes top marks. Let us explain. The smoothness of silk reduces friction during sleep. So, rather than your hair rubbing back and forth against it all night, it glides smoothly across it. This, in turn, not only minimizes the likelihood of waking up with frizz and bedhead hair but can also minimize damage since you’re not constantly roughing up the hair cuticle. Plus, silk is also more likely to help maintain the natural oils in your hair, explains Dr. Hadley King, a board-certified dermatologist in New York City. (This is because it’s not absorbent in the same way cotton is.)
Meet the Expert
Dr. Hadley King is a board-certified dermatologist in New York City. She is also a Clinical Instructor of Dermatology at the Weill Medical College of Cornell University and specializes in both medical and cosmetic dermatology.
Then there’s the issue of your skin. That same friction can cause pulling and tugging on your delicate complexion, so sleeping on a silk pillowcase is one easy way to potentially minimize that you don’t wake up with those annoying creases all over your face, although King notes that this benefit hasn’t been proven. Where she does think the benefits are legit is for those with sensitive skin: “Silk pillowcases and silk sheets can be helpful for those with sensitive skin because silk is lightweight, breathable, and non-irritating,” she explains. “Silk dressings are sometimes used for burns and severe eczema because of these properties.” And, of course, there’s a simple fact that using a silk pillowcase just feels so darn good and luxurious.
Ahead are the best silk pillowcases worth taking for a test drive… erm, snooze.
Best Overall: Slip Silk Pillowcase
Lab tested to reduce friction
Matching scrunchies and eye masks
Who else recommends it? Cosmopolitan and Good Housekeeping both picked the Slip Pure Silk Pillowcase.
What do buyers say? 85% of 500+ Amazon reviewers rated it 5 stars.
Believe the hype about this buzzy option. In lab testing, this pillowcase was shown to reduce that pesky friction by an impressive 43 percent. So it should come as no surprise that it has countless celeb fans and has won oodles of beauty awards. Also nice: It comes in both standard king and queen sizes and a variety of pretty neutral colors. We’re big fans of the accompanying silk scrunchies and eye masks, too.
Material: Mulberry silk | Size: Standard, king | Colors: 15
What Our Testers Say
"When I let my hair down the morning after sleeping on the silk, I noticed a marked difference in how soft and hydrated my hair still felt. I seriously could not stop touching my hair, something I usually cannot do after wash day without creating frizz." — Caitlin Duggan, Product Tester
Best Budget: MYK Pure Natural Mulberry Silk Pillowcase
Comes in multiple styles and colors
Silk is only 19 momme
Silk pillowcases can admittedly be pricey, so if you need a more budget-friendly pick, this is your best bet. Ringing in at a bargain price, it’s still made from 100% mulberry silk with no chemicals or dyes, is machine washable, and comes in 22 different colors. Pulling in impressive Amazon reviews, customers comment on how well it reduces frizzy hair.
Material: Mulberry silk | Size: Standard, queen, king | Colors: 22
Best Basic: Brooklinen Mulberry Silk Pillowcase
Easy on and off envelope closure
Some color options are limited edition
Simple, there are no extra bells and whistles here. Just a good-quality silk pillowcase that comes in a variety of colors. Smooth on hair and skin, it also stays nice and cool overnight, an attribute repeatedly noted by happy shoppers who’ve given it a five-star rating.
Material: Mulberry silk | Size: Standard, king | Colors: 4 essential, 4 limited edition
What Our Testers Say
"The Brooklinen Mulberry Silk Pillowcase was buttery soft, gave my skin and hair a boost, and helped me sleep better, too." — Leigh Weingus, Product Tester
Best for Allergies: YANIBEST Silk Pillowcase for Hair and Skin
21 momme silk
Reviews say it could be more durable
Silk, in general, tends to be better for those with allergies, but this has the added benefit of having a zipper closure, letting you fully encase your pillow to protect yourself from allergens. Amazon reviewers point out that this zipper also helps keep the pillowcase from sliding off your pillow.
Material: Mulberry silk | Size: Standard, queen king | Colors: 27
Best Pillow: NIGHT Pillow
High-quality pillow plus pillowcase combo
Offers 101-night sleep trial
Comfortable for all sleeping positions
Pillowcase isn’t 100% silk
Let’s be real, you’re probably in the market for a new pillow, right? This option is made from a featherweight memory foam that self-adjusts to any and every sleeping position. And, of course, it comes with a custom-fit silk pillowcase, too.
Material: Mulberry silk and spandex | Size: Standard | Colors: 1
Best Organic: The Silk Lady Organic Mulberry Silk Pillowcase
French seams to prevent fraying on edges
Easy on and off envelope closure
Limited color options
If you want to make sure you’re sleeping on the absolute purest silk possible, consider this option. The silk is sourced from a unique type of moth that’s fed only mulberry leaves, and, wait for it, lives in a dedicated, pollution-free area. The entire production process is chemical-free, so much so that the silk is OEKO-TEX Standard 100 Certified (a third-party certification).
Material: Silk | Size: Standard, queen, king | Colors: 1
Best Vegan Alternative: YouthSecret Pillowcase
Limited color options
Given where silk comes from, it can be a no-no for vegans. Enter this alternative, a personal favorite of Hadley’s. “I use and love these pillowcases,” she says. “The fabric is very smooth and silky with less friction, plus, they're machine washable and durable.” It’s a faux silk material that’s meant to feel twice as smooth as real silk, ensuring it glides across both skin and hair. It consistently pulls in rave reviews on Amazon, with users raving about how nice it feels, as well as the button closure that ensures it doesn’t slip off your pillow.
Material: Faux silk | Size: Standard, queen, king | Colors: 1
Best Value: Fishers Finery Mulberry Silk Pillowcase
Available in packs of two
25 momme silk
Available in a dye-free option
Best when dry cleaned or hand washed
King says this is one of the lesser-known, more affordable options out there that still delivers when it comes to quality. The mulberry silk is 25 momme (on both sides of the pillowcase), and we also appreciate that this comes in a natural white, undyed option for those who may be sensitive to dyes in fabrics. And per the point of it being a good value, this also comes in packs of two. FYI, it does hold up best if it’s hand-washed, though.
Material: Mulberry silk | Size: Standard, queen, king | Colors: 11
Best Hybrid: THXSILK 100% Mulberry Silk Pillowcase
Cotton backing prevents sliding
Limited color options
Not sure if you’re going to love sleeping on a silk pillowcase? Consider this pick. One side is made of 100% silk, the other 100% cotton, so you can easily get the best of both worlds. It’s also a super affordable option, too.
Material: Mulberry silk and cotton | Size: Standard, queen, king | Colors: 6
Best Splurge: Blissy Silk Pillowcase
22 momme silk
Has eco-friendly certifications
You don’t have to spend a ton of money on a good silk pillowcase, but if you have the extra cash and are ready to invest in an amazing option, this is the one. It’s made from 22 momme silk (for reference, 19 is considered super high), has Oeko-Tex, eco-friendly, and non-toxic certifications, and is naturally cooling, too. The nice line-up of over 30 colors (and prints!) is the cherry on top. Oh, and along with the standard trio of sizes, it also comes in youth and toddler sizes, too.
Material: Mulberry silk | Size: Standard, queen, king, youth, toddler | Colors: 6
If you want to see what all the buzz is behind silk pillowcases, you can’t go wrong with the Slip 100% Pure 22 Momme Mulberry Silk Pillowcase, one of the best-known options in the category that’s made from super high-quality silk and comes in a nice range of colors. The MYK Pure Natural Mulberry Silk Pillowcase and Fishers Finery Mulberry Silk Pillowcase are two great, wallet-friendly options, while The Silk Lady Organic Mulberry Silk Pillowcase is made of a unique type of organic silk that’s a nice choice for anyone looking for a chemical-free pillowcase.
What to Look for in a Silk Pillowcase
Think of this as the equivalent of a cotton thread count; it’s the measuring system for silk quality. For reference, 19 is considered super high.
How to Wash
Most silk pillowcases these days are machine washable but double-check to make sure, especially if you’re not willing to commit to hand washing or dry cleaning.
What are the benefits of a silk pillowcase?
When it comes to hair, silk pillowcases cause less friction, which can lead to less frizz and breakage, says King. For skin, they’re a breathable and non-irritating material that’s good for those with sensitive skin, she adds. There may be something to the fact that they prevent sleep creases, too, though that’s more of an anecdotal benefit.
How do you clean a silk pillowcase?
Follow the directions on the particular silk pillowcase you pick. Most are machine washable as long as you use the delicate cycle. Some can be tumbled dry on low, while others may need to be line dried.
Why Trust Byrdie
Byrdie contributor Melanie Rud has over a decade of experience in the beauty industry, writing for some of the biggest magazines and websites out there. She has long hair that’s easily tangled, which is why she loves sleeping on a silk pillowcase (and using a silk scrunchie).
19 Best Silk Pillowcases for Your Hair and Skin. Cosmopolitan. https://www.cosmopolitan.com/style-beauty/beauty/g27047247/best-silk-pillowcase/
13 Best Silk Pillowcases, According to Fabric Experts. Good Housekeeping. https://www.goodhousekeeping.com/home-products/best-sheets/g3948/best-silk-pillowcases/