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Silk Pillowcases: Are They Worth It?

March 10, 2020


Erin Schrader

I’m sure by now you’ve heard the rage of silk pillowcases. I’m not going to lie – when I first started hearing about silk pillowcases I thought they were for old people in homes that haven’t been redecorated since 1928. Don’t ask why my mind forms these assumptions but there we have it. It turns out that even if that is the case, these women were onto something and ahead of the the trends. You go ladies of 1928.

Silk pillowcases have made a BIG entrance on the sleeping scene over the past year or two and in case you’re wondering why, let me fill you in. With claims like “anti-aging, anti-bedhead, clearer skin” and every other thing us ladies want to hear on the regular, that’s why. Here’s the exact description from the most popular silk pillowcase on the market, Slip “Crafted from pure silk inside and out as recommended by dermatologists, plastic surgeons, hairdressers and beauty experts alike, this pillowcase elevates beauty sleep to a whole new level. We spend a third of our lives in bed, so what you sleep on is important. Silk fibers are significantly less absorbent than many other fibers, so they help keep your skin’s moisture and expensive face and hair products where they belong—on your face and hair, not your pillow. Ordinary pillowcases can cause hair to pull and tangle throughout the night, leading to bed head in the morning and potentially damaging hair. Slipsilk can help reduce friction, too, which also aids in reducing stretching and tugging on delicate facial skin.”

So here’s the deal – a silk pillowcase can claim such a thing but does that mean it’s true? Insert team LIY and our best bedhead [the things we do for the internet…for more beauty product comparisons click here!] That’s right, we decided to put not just one brand of silk pillowcase to the test, but two.

The Silk Pillowcases We Tested:

How We Tested:

We slept. A lot. And then we took pictures of what we woke up like. Four of us on the team with all different hair types spent a night first sleeping on our standard non-silk pillowcases, then we spent a night [or several] sleeping on the slip silk pillowcase and then did the same thing on the less expensive Amazon version to determine if the extra doll-hairs were worth it 😉 We paid attention to the level of tangles in our hair, smoothness, overall bed-headness, creases on our face and even things like “wait, is our skin clearing up?!” notes. So did we wake up with Beyonce confidence thanks to our silk pillowcases? We’ll let you be the judge of that…

Our Results:

Hair Type: Coarse, Thick Hair

Method of testing: I slept on all 3 pillowcases on day 2 hair!

Pillowcase #1 Tested: slip for beauty sleep slip(TM)

Notes: As you can tell from the photos above, my faux fur pillowcase [yes, I was sleeping on fur prior to this experiment] left my hair pretty naturally smooth and straight so I wasn’t expecting much from this whole silk pillowcase test. After night one, I thought “okay, that wasn’t bad, but I don’t think I’d buy one”. Except the more I slept on this pillowcase, the more I noticed things other than just smooth hair: my skin seemed to clear up [this is crazy but I don’t think I’ve had a zit in the past two months of sleeping on one now], my pillow stays cooler during the night and on days where I’m not washing my hair, I don’t even feel the need to brush it.
Do I recommend this product? YES. In fact, I recommend it so much I’m using it nightly now and have no plans of quitting anytime soon.

Pillowcase #2 Tested: ALASKA BEAR® – Natural Silk Pillowcase

Notes: I was anxious to try the Amazon version to see what the big difference was between the two. The two biggest differences I noticed were that this pillowcase felt a little less silky than slip and it had a zipper enclosure while the other didn’t. While I do feel like my hair was pretty smooth and damage free in the morning, I personally feel like I prefer the silkiness of the other one.

Do you recommend this product? Yes, while I am not personally choosing this one to sleep on nightly, I would recommend if you are buying on a budget. My husband now uses this pillowcase nightly and is loving it, mostly for the cooling factor but just yesterday he said “I have noticed that I don’t have hair tufts in the morning anymore..” It’s a win/win for the two of us!

Hair Type: Fine hair that gets very tangly

Method of testing: I slept on all 3 pillowcases on Day 2 hair

Pillowcase #1 Tested: slip for beauty sleep slip(TM)

Notes: Talk about a soft and luxurious pillowcase! I don’t know if using the slip did a whole lot for visual bedhead for my hair type. However, what I will say is that when I went to brush it, my hair was so much less tangly from using the SLIP than it is in the morning using a regular cotton pillowcase. That is hard to convey in a photo though! Also the packaging claims to be anti-sleep crease, which I did not find to be the case — I woke up with some solid lines on the side of my cheek!

Do you recommend this product? I don’t think so – too pricey for me!

Pillowcase Tested: ALASKA BEAR® – Natural Silk Pillowcase

Notes: This pillowcase is also super soft and smooth. While I can tell a difference in the silkiness between this and the Slip, I think it does the trick for $60 less! They both helped to keep the tangles at bay, so I think this one is the way to go if you’ve got tangly hair! However, at the end of the day, I might be strange but I actually prefer the feeling of cotton on my face — so it’s back to my regular old pillowcase for me!

Do you recommend this product? Yes!

Hair Type: Thick, Coarse

Method of testing: I tested both pillowcases on day 2 hair.

Pillowcase #1 Tested: slip for beauty sleep slip(TM)

Notes: This pillowcase feels magical on my face. It’s smooth and cool to the touch and I’m contemplating buying silk sheets so that my entire body can feel this luxury. However, I did not find that it made a big difference in the way my hair looked upon waking up (obviously!). I feel like a silk pillowcase is the route to go, but I don’t know that it’s worth investing at this price point for me. 

Do you recommend this product? Yes if you want a lovely feeling pillow case, no if you’re looking for a bed head miracle.

Pillowcase #2 Tested: ALASKA BEAR® – Natural Silk Pillowcase

Notes: This pillowcase is definitely softer, cooler and nicer than my normal pillow cases – you know, the ones that come with the sheets. The silk quality is not as luxurious as the Slip pillowcase, but it’s still nice and that’s kind of expected at a quarter of the price. The fact is – I didn’t see a huge difference in my bed head with either pillowcase. However, this doesn’t speak to the long term effects of using a silk case verses a regular case. Personally I plan to continue using a silk case because it feels so wonderful on my face.

Do you recommend this product? Yes! My recommendation would be to try this one out if you’re looking for a more affordable option to test out using a silk case, and invest in the Slip if you’d like to invest in luxury.

Hair Type: Semi-thick, smooth, wavy 

Method of testing: I tested both pillowcases after going to bed with wet hair. 

Pillowcase #1 Tested: slip for beauty sleep slip(TM)

Notes on Slip: The silk pillowcase truly is silky soft, cool to the touch, and is absolutely luxurious, but I wanted to test it’s capabilities with handling wet hair before bed! I typically avoid showering at night because I wake up with my hair a crazy mess and difficult to style the next day. After testing, I will say, the silk pillowcase made a small difference–my hair was easier to handle and didn’t take as long to style the next morning. As you can see from the photos it was nothing drastic or earth shattering, but I will say my hair felt smoother when using the silk pillowcase. ALTHOUGH, I was initially testing the silk pillowcase for it’s hair transformation abilities, what I noticed the most was the effect it had on my skin [I used to for over a week]! I suffer from oily and acne prone skin, and I felt like this silk pillowcase had an impact on pores, ance and overall oiliness which is HUGE for me. Honestly, because it had these effects on my skin, I would pay the big bucks for this pillowcase. I am kind of in that phase of my life where if anything has a small, positive, change to my skin, then I am in! It is so hard to find products that actually help with my oily mess! 

Do you recommend this product? Yes

Pillowcase #2 Tested: ALASKA BEAR® – Natural Silk Pillowcase

Notes: For me personally, this Amazon silk pillowcase didn’t really do anything for my hair. Of all the pillowcases, this case made my hair the most difficult to style the next morning. It was pretty curly underneath and kind of sticking up all over the place in the back. I didn’t use this case quite as long as the Slip pillowcase, but I didn’t notice as drastic of a difference in my skin like I did with the Slip. That being said, the case does feel nice, cool, silky and has a zip closure. The price point on this case is definitely way more feasible and some of the other team members truly love it–but, for me it just didn’t work! 

Do you recommend this product? No, only because if I wanted to reap the benefits of a silk pillowcase I would invest in the Slip! 

In Conclusion….

Collectively do we think that sleeping on a silk pillowcase has visible benefits? Yes. Did we notice a few of the other claims to be true? Yes. Are all of us converting 100% to only sleep on silk from here on out? Not all. I do believe that the longer you use one, the more visible the results you’ll notice. I do believe that as you hit the sheets every night you’ll love the feeling of silk under your face and if falling asleep feeling like the queen that you are, well, that’s worth something friend.

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