May 20, 2019

With our days getting longer and nights getting warmer, it may be time to swap out our bedding for something lighter and breathable. While both down and down-alternative products serve the same purpose, the materials inside, the care instructions, and even the weight of each may vary greatly. One choice may be better than the other when it comes to changing our bedding for the spring time. So, is down or down alternative the better option and what are the advantages and disadvantages of both?


What’s the difference?

Down is made from the fine quill-less material beneath the feather layer on ducks and geese, while down-alternative is created from synthetic or natural materials, like polyester, rayon, or cotton. At Warm Things we pride ourselves on the fact that all of our down products are responsibly sourced.


What’s inside?

Down and down alternative products are formulated with what we call “fill power.” Fill power is a measure of how many cubic inches one ounce of down or synthetic material expands to. As far as a range goes, products between 550-750 fill are considered good, and anything over 750 is great! Ultimately, the higher the number, the better the insulation quality. This can especially be a helpful figure to keep in mind when shopping for the perfect product for your bedding needs. The fill will essentially be the deciding factor for its level of comfortability. So, what makes one better than the other?




  • Lighter in weight, making it more breathable and comfortable
  • Keeps you warm and cozy
  • Not designed to be machine washable and may require dry cleaning
  • Can potentially trigger allergies or asthma for those sensitive to this type of filling
  • A more expensive option due to being made from limited, natural resources


Down Alternative


  • Machine washable and much easier to clean and maintain
  • Great option for those with allergies or asthma
  • Less expensive alternative for someone on a stricter budget
  • Heavier material due to the use of more synthetic stuffing which can cause you to get hotter throughout the night
  • Doesn’t regulate temperature as well as down
  • Not as long lasting compared to other down products


What’s better?

Whatever you choose really depends on personal preference. Additionally, there are many points to consider when shopping for down vs. down alternative bedding. Down products can be more of an investment, but you will be repaid with longer use and a lighter sleep. If you are working with a smaller budget, there are some amazing down alternative options available within most budgets. If you suffer from allergies, the hypoallergenic filling is also a big selling point for our customers.

We have a large selection of products here at Warm Things including down comforters, down alternative comforters, down pillows, down alternative pillows, and feather beds. Check out all we have for sale over at As always, we offer free shipping on all purchases over $39 (exclusions apply).

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