How Often Should I Replace my Linens? The Comprehensive Guide

How often should I replace my sheets? How long does bedding last? How often should I replace my towels? The Fig Linens and Home team answers all your questions on how often to replace your linens and how to preserve your bedding.
Daphne floral towels from matouk in a stack for fig linens and home

Linens like bedding, towels, sheets, and blankets are necessary additions to a cozy home. However, too often we wait until our linens are completely threadbare, worn through, and ineffective before buying new ones. This comprehensive guide tells you exactly how long you should be using your bedding and towels before replacing them. The Fig Linens and Home team offers advice on how to know it's time for new linens and explains how to know when it's time to upgrade. When you're ready for new bedding, our complete guide to buying bedding offers all the advice you'll need to find the right pieces for you.

First, we will go over how long you should use bedding before replacing it, including sheets, pillows, comforters, and duvet covers. Next, we will review how often you should replace your towels, including bath towels, bath rugs, and kitchen towels.

Matouk Diamond Pique Bedding How Often to Replace my Bedding Fig Linens and Home
Fig Linens and Home: Diamond Pique Bedding by Matouk
Matouk Diamond Pique Bedding How Often to Replace my Bedding Fig Linens and Home closeup
Fig Linens and Home: Diamond Pique Bedding by Matouk

How Often Should I Replace my Bedding?

Bedding is perhaps the most used fixture in our homes. We sleep on our bedding every night, and wash our sheets every week to every two weeks. As such a frequented part of our homes, it makes sense that bedding should be replaced at regular intervals.

Each piece of your bedding has different care requirements and a varied lifespan, which we will cover in the following section.

how often to replace linens, bedding, and towels for fig linens and home

How often Should I replace my sheets?

In general, sheets last about 2-3 years. After this amount of time, they may begin to show visible and tactile signs of wear including thinning, yellowing, and fading. If you notice any of these changes, or a significant decline in the feel of your bedding, it is probably time to replace them.

Stack of Matouk Attleboro striped bedding in various colors
Fig Linens and Home: Attleboro Bedding by Matouk

Extending the Lifespan of Your sheets

  1. The first step to making sure your sheets last for a long time is investing in high-quality bedding. Sheets made of quality materials like long-staple cotton and high momme silk with a high thread count will last much longer than a less carefully made style.
  2. Next, the Fig Linens and Home team recommends having two sets of sheets at any given time. Not only does this model mean you will have to replace your sheets half as often (every 4-6 years instead of 2-3) but it will also help you wash your sheets easily once a week. With two sets of sheets, you can put a fresh set on the bed while washing the dirty set.
  3. Finally, it is important to take proper care of your sheets to extend their life. Pay attention to the care instructions on your sheets and try to let them air dry as often as possible.
Crinkled organic percale sheet set by coyuchi for fig linens and home, when should i replace my sheets
Fig Linens and Home: Organic Crinkled Percale Sheet Sets by Coyuchi

How often Should I replace my comforter?

Since your comforter (the fluffy insert inside your duvet) does not directly touch your body, it often lasts longer than sheets that are being constantly washed. However, the amount of time between replacing the comforter depends on whether it is made of a down or a down alternative.

Fig Linens and Home
Fig Linens and Home: Mackenza 560+ White Down Comforter by Downright

Down Alternative Comforters comforters should be replaced at least every four years.

Down alternative comforters are made of synthetic materials, such as polyester or microfiber, which break down relatively quickly. Therefore, down alternative comforters should be replaced about every four years. When your comforter “begins to look limp and flat or starts leaking bits of filling” it's time to replace according to  NBC News.

A Down Comforter Can Last for 20-25 Years.

Down comforters on the other hand, are made of all-natural goose down and if properly cared for can last for up to 25 years.

This extended lifespan should be a consideration when weighing the higher initial price of a down comforter, because it may end up being more affordable than constantly replacing a down alternative comforter in the long run. 

How Often Should I Replace my Pillows?

Similar to sheets, pillows are a part of your bed that is in constant use. The pressure from your head on a pillow means it should be replaced more often than other bedding elements.

New York Mag's Strategist recommends the “shoe test.” for determining if it's time for a new pillow. Fold your pillow in half, and place a single shoe on top of the fold. If the pillow springs back and flings the shoe off, the pillow is good to keep. If it stays, it doesn't have enough support to hold your head while sleeping.

Like comforters, the lifespan of a pillow depends on whether it is made of down, or a down alternative.

Snowdon Down pillows by sferra for fig linens and home
Fig Linens and Home: Snowdon Down Pillows by Sferra

Down Alternative Pillows should be replaced every 1-2 years.

Since synthetic fibers lose their firmness rapidly, the Sleep Foundation recommends replacing your pillows every 1-2 years. This ensures that your pillows are supportive for proper sleep and to make sure the pillows are clean and free of allergens. 

Down Pillows can Last 5-10 years.

On the other hand, down pillows last for at least three years, sometimes up to 10 if they are properly cared for. 

How Often Should I Replace my Duvets and Blankets?

As long as you sleep with a flat sheet, your body will not be touching your duvet cover and blanket. Therefore, it does not need to be washed as often and will tend to last longer. On average, a blanket and duvet cover should last about 3-5 years.

John robshaw dastai duvet how often should i replace my bedding
Fig Linens and Home: Dasati Duvet Cover by John Robshaw

How Often Should I Replace my Towels?

  • Bath Towels should be replaced every 2-3 years. As bath towels should be washed frequently (about every 3-4 days), they should be replaced relatively frequently. High GSM bath towels tend to last longer than lower-quality styles.
  • Kitchen Towels should be replaced every year or every two years. Since they are used every day and frequently washed, kitchen towels should be replaced often. High-quality tea towels like long-staple cotton towels from Le Jacquard Francais will last this entire period without deteriorating.

Bath Rugs Last About Two years.

Bath rugs should be replaced about every two years. Since these thick and fluffy bathroom rugs are infrequently washed, it is important to replace them to be sure they don't grow bacteria and become dirty.

Matouk Kiran bath towel collection
Fig Linens and Home: Kiran Bath Collection by Matouk
Abyss and Habidecor stone rugs how often should I replace by bath rug
Fig Linens and Home: Stone Rugs by Abyss and Habidecor

When it's time for new linens, shop Fig Linens and Home for concierge service on luxury linens from brands like Matouk, Sferra, Frette, and Abyss & Habidecor.

Are there any tips for making your linens last we forgot to list? Let us know in the comments, we'd love to hear from you!

sophie edwards content writer for fig linens and home

Sophie Edwards

Sophie is the head content writer at Fig Linens and Home. She is a bedding, linens, and luxury homeware expert with an interest is the intersection of interior design with fashion, travel and culture. She has a BA in creative writing and sociology from Sarah Lawrence and an MSc from the Oxford University Department of Anthropology and Museum Ethnography.

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