Supima cotton is a special type of cotton that you may not come across very often. But it you have heard of it, you know that this is very high quality cotton. Read on to find out exactly what is Supima cotton, where it gets its name from, and what makes it special.
→ Skip to best Supima cotton sheets
What Is Supima Cotton?
Supima is a portmanteau of supreme and pima. So to understand what is Supima cotton, we first have to know what is Pima cotton. Pima cotton is a long or extra-long staple cotton. It grows in only a few areas of the world: Peru, the USA and Australia. Supima cotton is a special type of pima cotton that comes only from the USA. But not all US-grown pima cotton is considered superior. True Supima cotton bears the Supima® trademark.
Where Does Supima Cotton Come From?
The first half of the 20th century saw a rise in the demand for pima cotton. A group of US family farmers decided that the quality of the cotton must not suffer due to the higher demand. So in 1954 they established the Supima non-profit organization. To goal was to group pure and high quality pima cotton in the US. To better manage and promote Supima cotton, they started a license program. These days the Supima® trademark is quite an exclusive club. Only around 600 select US manufacturers and retailers have the license.
Supima cotton needs a hot arid climate and irrigation to grow. So only a few areas in the US, like the Southwest and Far West, are suitable for cultivation. Of all the cotton grown in America, pima cotton makes up around 3%. The number of licensed Supima manufacturers and retailers is quite small, as we saw above. So Supima cotton is even more rare.
What is Supima Cotton Like?
Supima cotton is special, as it comes strictly from the USA. But apart from that, this cotton type shares other characteristics of pima cotton. Most importantly, this cotton has long or extra-long staple fibers. Staple refers to the length of an individual cotton fiber. This determines much of the quality of the fabric. Fibers can be short, medium, long, or extra-long.
Long stable cotton fibers are at least 1.3/32 long. While extra-long staple means that the cotton fibers are at least 1.3/8 inches long. Long and extra-long staple fiber makes for better quality sheets. This is because there are less fiber ends sticking out from the fabric. You just don’t need that many fibers to sow into a sheet in the first place. Although tiny, these ends make the fabric surface less smooth and soft. The other reason why you should prefer sheets from longer staple cotton, is because they are less prone to pilling. Which also makes them more resistant to tearing or breaking.
What Is Supima Cotton Used For?
Supima cotton is most widespread in the clothing industry. You can find men’s and women’s shirts, denim, t-shirts, socks, shorts, pants, and other apparel. But not only that. Supima cotton is also used for making other products. Such as bed linen, towels, bathrobes, and even furniture.
Best Supima Cotton Sheets
Bumble offers a very affordable Supima sheet set. And the quality is great as well! The percale weave makes the sheets nice and crisp. They’re cool, yet breathable. As the sheets tend to wrinkle easily, you might want to either fold them or lay them on the bed quickly after washing, or just do a bit of ironing.
Sizes: Twin, Full, Queen, King
Colors: White, Navy, Sky Blue, Light Grey, Dark Grey
Price: From $60
AURAA Royale offers a very affordable sheet set made from Supima cotton. It’s often hard to find sheets from this high quality cotton under $100, so it’s a great find. But leaving the price tag aside, the sheets are heavy with a 1000 thread count. They have a sateen weave, which gives them a nice sheen and true smoothness. If you have a thick mattress, not to worry – the fitted sheet works well with mattresses up to 18”. The size selection is not that big. These sheets come in beautiful neutral tones that give a delicate feel to your bed.
Sizes: Full, Queen, King, Split King, Cal King
Color: White, Ivory, Blue, Burgundy, Taupe, Charcoal, Chocolate, Silver, Ballad Blue, High Rise, Sea Foam
Price: From $83
In the recent years, Casper has revolutionized the world of sleeping. And one thing that they’ve taken to the next level is bedding. Their Supima cotton comes from California. These sheets have a 400 thread count. Casper’s sheets have 2-ply threads. We don’t usually recommend multi-ply threads, but this is an exception. Casper has done their research. And found that this is the perfect combination of thread count and plies. The result is an extraordinary sheet. You’ll get a breathable, cool, and wonderfully strong sheet set.
Sizes: Twin, Twin XL, Full, Queen, King, Cal King
Colors: Cream, White, Grey/Slate, Navy/Azure, Sky/Azure, White/Slate
Price: From $64
Threadmill Home Linen has a beautiful 100% Supima cotton sheet set with a 1000 thread count. They use single ply threads of extra long staple cotton – a great indicator of the high quality of the sheets. The sheets are strong, heavy, super soft, and the sateen weave makes them smooth to the touch. One thing that makes Threadmill Home Linen stand out is their green approach. Their factory runs solely on wind and solar energy. The chemicals they use in the production process are harmless. Even to the most sensitive skin. Last but not least, they don’t use any plastic packaging. They sell the sheets straight from the factory without using any middlemen. With the goal of keeping the costs down for their clients. There is just so much to appreciate in both their approach and their sheets.
Sizes: Queen, King, Cal King
Colors: White, Ivory
Price: From $98
These 1000 thread count Supima cotton sheets are from Tranquil Nights. With a sateen weave, they’re silky smooth to the touch. The long staple cotton is a great quality one indeed. Less prone to tearing and pilling, as is the case with short and medium staple cotton. The size and color selection is not overly large, but it’s a great buy for the price!
Sizes: Full, Queen, King
Colors: White, Taupe, Grey, Aqua, Blue Jean
Price: From $117
For a slightly lighter King size sheet set, Charter Club has a great option. With a thread count of 550 and Supima cotton, you will get a high quality sheet set. These sets only come in king size, however. So they’re not available for everyone. Also, they don’t come in solid colors but a more sophisticated striped pattern.
Colors: White, Navy, Smoke, Blue
Price: From $171
Peacock Alley is known for their luxury bedding and bathroom products. This particular Supima cotton set is a limited edition and only comes in queen and king size. But my oh my are these sheets great! They have a 500 thread count. This is true luxury in its best form. And of course it reflects in the price, so only a few will be able to afford it. But if you can, you will receive the best quality available.
Sizes: Queen, King
Colors: White, Blue, Grey
Price: From $260