Soothe and comfort with one our favourite weighted blankets

Soothe and comfort with one our favourite weighted blankets
The benefits of weighted blankets can include reduced anxiety and a better night’s sleep. We’ve found the best options from Simba, Gravity and Silentnight

If there was a product that was made for 2021, it would be the weighted blanket. With so many people experiencing the negative effects of separation from their loved ones and feeling increasingly anxious in these uncertain times, a snuggly quilt that calms is a fitting avatar for this unprecedented year.

Sensory weighted blankets and clothing are not new; therapists have used them for more than a decade to help people with autism and attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder. 

But the blankets only really hit the mainstream consumer market recently, when people started sharing how comforting they found them.

The science behind them relates to deep touch pressure (DTP), which is a form of sensory input often delivered through hugging, squeezing, stroking and swaddling. It can calm people who feel anxious and lead to better sleep.

When it comes to finding the perfect weighted blanket that will result in maximum tranquillity, selecting the right weight and material are key. 

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Pick a fabric that feels good to you, whether its fleece or cotton, and go for something that is roughly 10 per cent of your body weight. Style and colour — although most of the blankets available are grey — are also important, because you will want it to fit in with your interiors.

The best weighted blankets for 2021 are:

Simba orbit

Best: Overall

  • Weights available: 6.8kg, 9kg
  • Removable cover included? Yes

The firm that brought us perhaps most the most-hyped mattress in history is now offering its own weighted blanket. The Orbit is another blanket with a machine-washable grey cover, this time made of 100 per cent cotton, and comprises several elements, including a cushiony layer that envelopes the quilted pockets holding the glass nano-beads for maximum comfort. 

We tried the blanket in 6.8kg and found it was comfortable and breathable enough to keep us sound asleep through the night, with no hint of restlessness.

Read our full review of the Simba Orbit weighted blanket

Silentnight weighted blanket

Best: Budget buy

  • Weights available: 6.8kg, 9kg
  • Removable cover included? No 

At 9kg, this blanket is one of the heavyweights, but it does not feel overly oppressive. It is buttery soft on the skin and the glass beads that give it its weight are evenly distributed thanks to the equally stitched pockets. 

Because the cover is not removable to put in the washing machine, we think it is best suited for use on the sofa rather than in bed. It does, however, feature loops that can be used to tie on your own cover. This is a great-quality blanket for a reasonable price.  

Sommio knitted weighted blanket

Best: Knitted weighted blanket

  • Weights available: 7kg, 9kg
  • Removable cover included? No

This gorgeous weighted blanket is unlike any other we tried. Instead of the usual quilt-style design filled with beads, it is handmade from 100 per cent organic cotton that is knitted, layer upon layer, to give it its weight. We tried it in the heavier, 9kg option — a 7kg version is available too — and found it to be super calming and breathable. The blanket comes in four colourways to match your interiors and we especially love that it is machine washable and tumble-dryer safe.

Snoozzzy weighted blanket

Best: For children

  • Weights available: 2.2kg, 3.1kg, 4.5kg
  • Removable cover included? Yes

Snoozzzy is a children’s wellbeing brand that specialises in weighted blankets, so its products are designed with the needs of little ones in mind. It’s little wonder then that the 5lb (around 2.3kg) blanket that our dinky nine-year-old tester tried went down a storm. He loved the fun design on the cuddly fleece cover and the raised, dotty sensory pattern on the reverse, and adored the plush owl cuddly toy that comes as standard with the lightest blanket. 

His parents liked that the blanket has eight loops around the edges to keep it in place inside the cover if he wriggled around in bed, and that the cover can be unzipped and popped in the washing machine for cleaning.

What makes this brand special is the attention to detail and consideration for children’s safety. The stitching on the covers and blankets, and the zips, underwent rigorous strength-testing during development to ensure safety, and all the dyes used are formaldehyde-free.

Mela weighted blanket

Best: For sleep

  • Weights available: 5.5kg, 7kg, 9kg
  • Removable cover included? Yes

Mela’s classic weighted blanket has become a favourite for getting cosy at bedtime in our tester’s home. We love the soft grey, minky fleece cover with its raised dotty reverse, and think having it available in different sizes (single, double and king) and weights (from 5.5kg to 11kg) is brilliant. We tried the blanket in a 7kg double, and it was just right for a restful night’s sleep. This one is also machine washable, to keep it fresh as a daisy, and every blanket bought protects 25 trees in the Amazon rainforest.

Soak & Sleep weighted blanket and plush grey cover

Best: For allergies

  • Weights available: 5.5kg, 7kg, 8.5kg, 10kg
  • Removable cover included? Yes

This blanket and cover bundle is excellent value for money and the quality is just as good as some other more expensive options in our round-up. The pure 300-thread-count cotton weighted blanket is filled with evenly distributed glass beads to give it its weight, and it feels warm and snuggly when used with the washable plush cover that comes in – you guessed it – grey. This blanket is a good option for people with allergies because Soak and Sleep says it has been treated to prevent the buildup of irritants.

Gravity weighted blanket

Best: For choice

  • Weights available: 4kg, 6kg, 8kg, 10kg, 12kg
  • Removable cover included? Yes

If you’ve got a particular look or specification in mind, a Gravity blanket is your best bet. There are different covers to choose from, including all-season and summer options, as well as two sizes and five weights, so you can be sure to find the blanket that is perfect for you. 

Each product is hypoallergenic, handmade using sustainable production methods, and machine washable at 40C. We tried the 8kg weighted blanket with space grey plush all-year cover and loved how its soft, comforting feel helped aid sleep to leave us feeling refreshed in the morning.

Weighted blankets FAQs

What is the purpose of a weighted blanket?

Weighted blankets use gentle pressure to promote a sense of calm and relaxation, and reduce feelings of anxiety. Lisa Sanfilippo, a psychotherapist, yoga therapist and author of Sleep Recovery, explains: “When we feel swaddled or held, we can tend to feel safer and more secure. It may mimic the feeling of contact, which can be comforting.” They can also help with sleep problems such as insomnia.

Is it ok to sleep with a weighted blanket every night?

It’s generally safe for adults to sleep with a weighted blanket every night – in fact, our tester now sleeps under their Simba blanket every night. But it’s important to choose the right blanket for your needs. Most manufacturers suggest that your blanket should be around 10 per cent of your own body weight, but you should always choose a weight that feels comfortable, and remove it if it begins to feel too heavy. If you have a medical condition or any concerns about using your weighted blanket, consult a medical professional before investing. Young children should always be supervised when using a weighted blanket.

Is a weighted blanket instead of a duvet?

It’s up to you – some people like to replace their duvet with a weighted blanket, whereas others like layering them both, particularly during the colder months. If the sizes match up, you can also use a duvet cover on your weighted blanket to keep it clean.

The verdict: Weighted blankets

The Simba orbit promises “better, deeper sleep” – and it delivers, making it worthy of the best buy title. Our tester, once a notoriously poor sleeper, struggles to go a night without this high-quality weighted blanket since trying it for this review because the improvement in sleep has been so dramatically noticeable. The orbit, with its peachy soft cotton cover, is a night-time essential.

For something a little more unique than a standard grey weighted blanket, we recommend Sommio’s knitted number, and for parents eager to help their children have a better night’s sleep (name us a parent who isn’t), a Snoozzzy is an excellent investment.

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