The Benefits of Silk or Satin Pillowcases and How to Make Your Own

Because of their expensive price tags, most people probably associate silk and satin pillowcases with a sense of luxury. As it turns out, there are actual health benefits that silk and satin pillowcases can have, and by making your own, you can cut their prices in half.

Silk is famous for its natural ability to regulate heat, so if you tend to be a sweaty sleeper and are tired of waking up to gross, moist pillowcases, silk pillowcases might be for you. Silk's fibers naturally wick moisture so that you can stay dry (and cool!) all night long.

This benefit might seem a little strange, but if you've used a lot of mascara over the years and have lost a lot of natural eyelash volume, switching to silk or satin pillowcases could help prevent more eyelash loss. Cotton pillowcases are made from materials that tug and pull your hair, skin, and--you guessed it--eyelashes. Silk and satin fabrics don't have the same effect. As you toss and turn in the night, your hair, skin, and eyelashes glide right over the material with hardly any friction at all. Silk and satin can't magically restore eyelash loss, but they can prevent it from getting worse.

Here are some of the other benefits of silk and satin pillowcases:

Better Skin

  • Wrinkle Prevention: Cotton pillowcases can actually cause wrinkles. As you toss and turn in the night, the fabric in cotton pillowcases creases your skin and forms wrinkles. Silk and satin pillows don't have the same friction against your skin, though. You can toss and turn all you want with your face as close to your pillow as possible, but your skin will glide right over silk without creasing.
  • Dry Skin Prevention: Cotton materials absorb moisture, which could be bad for people with naturally dry skin since they need all the moisture they can get. Silk and satin fabrics don't have the same moisture absorption effects, which means sleeping on a silk or satin pillowcase can help your skin from drying out.
  • Acne Prevention: While the evidence on this is still in debate, as some acne is caused by skin irritation, it's not unreasonable to assume that sleeping on a pillowcase made of less irritating fabrics could potentially prevent acne from popping up as frequently. As any long-term acne sufferer knows, there can be many causes. Eliminating one potential avenue can only help.

Better Hair

  • Frizz prevention: Skin isn't the only part of your body that gets "snagged" by cotton fabrics. If you have naturally curly hair and are tired of waking up with a lot of bedhead and way too much frizz, sleeping on a silk or satin pillowcase that doesn't cause friction to your hair while you toss and turn might be the answer to your hair-related prayers.
  • Tangle prevention: The same principles about frizz apply to tangles since frizz isn't the only thing caused by cotton materials snagging your hair in the middle of the night. If you have thick or curly hair (or both) and struggle with tangles, you should definitely consider switching to a silk or satin pillowcase. When it comes to struggling with tangles in the morning, every little bit helps!
  • Breakage prevention: This one is especially important for people with naturally thin hair, as well as for those who might be experiencing hair loss. Since silk and satin pillowcases cause less friction and tugging than cotton pillowcases, they might help you lose less hair over time. The tangle prevention benefit applies here too, because the less you have to brush through tangles in your hair, the less hair you'll lose.
  • Dry hair prevention: Yep, hair gets as dried out as skin does--sometimes even more so! Switch to silk and satin pillowcases to keep your hair's moisture locked in place so that it looks hydrated, shiny, and smooth, just like your pillowcases.

Ready to create your own silk and satin pillowcases? Read our instructions below.

Silk or Satin Pillowcase with Zipper

What you'll need:

  • A sewing machine with an invisible zipper presser foot
  • 2 yards of 100% silk or satin fabric
  • matching thread
  • a seam ripper
  • pins
  • and an iron with an ironing board


  • Step 1: Cut your fabric into four 21"x28" rectangles.
  • Step 2: Lay two of the rectangles on top of each other with the sides you want on the outside of the pillowcase touching. (It should look like the start of an inside-out pillowcase.) Sew one of the rectangle's short ends together using wide stitches ½" away from the fabric's edge.
  • Step 3: Unfold the rectangle so that the two pieces of fabric are lying away from each other. Iron each side so that it's nice and smooth.
  • Step 4: Take your invisible zipper and lay it across the stitching zipper side down. Pin the zipper to the fabric on both sides and then, using your invisible zipper presser foot, sew the zipper into the fabric. Make sure that when you get to the very ends of the zipper, you sew across the very small space between stitches. Think of it as one long, thin rectangle.
  • Step 5: Turn the fabric over so that you can see the closed seam. Very carefully, rip out the threads in the center, the ones covering the zipper, with your seam ripper. You should be left with a perfectly centered zipper.
  • Step 6: Fold the fabric back so that it looks like an inside out pillowcase again. Pin the remaining open sides together and then stitch twice: the first time with a straight pattern and the second time with a zig-zag pattern. This will protect your fancy pillowcase from fraying!
  • Step 7: Repeat all the previous steps with the other two rectangles you cut out in step 1. Then, turn the pillowcases inside out, place them over your two favorite pillows, and enjoy the best night's sleep you've probably ever had!