Do You Really Need a Top Sheet? Our Team’s Bedding Debate

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Threadmill bed sheets

If you haven’t already heard, using a top sheet… or not using one has been a huge debate! Up until recently, I didn’t even know this was a thing, but come to find out, lots of you have some pretty strong feelings whether you should have one or not. Well, the debate is over and here are my team’s thoughts on this hot discussion!

Before we get to the debate, what is a “top sheet”?

messy white bedding and pillows ruffled and disorganized on bed

A top sheet, otherwise known as a flat sheet, is the fabric that you lie under. It goes directly above the fitted sheet and underneath blankets, quilts, duvets, and/or comforters that might be on the bed and is the barrier between the other layers of bedding. 

So why might you need… or not need a top sheet? 


1. It’s just what you’re used to.

package of sheets with tag sitting on table in front of bed

I’ve really never given a top sheet a second thought because it has always come with any sheet sets I’ve ever bought. I paid for it, so why wouldn’t I use it?! Maybe it’s because I’m Type A or don’t often think outside the box, but using a top sheet just seems like a no-brainer to me, especially since I spent my hard earned money on it. Even Emily, my Hip Sidekick, never really gave it a second thought before.

“I didn’t know that not using a top sheet was a thing! Haha! We use one, and while most of the time it ends up kicked down and crumpled at the end of the bed, I’ll pull it back up while making up the sheets since I like having it as a separator between me and the duvet—that way I don’t have to wash my duvet cover as often.” – Emily

Hip Tip: They actually make sheet sets that only include a fitted sheet and two pillowcases if you are interested in ditching the top sheet.

2. Your sleeping partner might need a top sheet.

man and woman under white comforter in bed bedding looking at each other

Something, or should I say, someone, to think about when deciding if you need a top sheet or not is your sleeping partner if you have one! Oftentimes, one of you may not be able to sleep without one, whereas the other could totally do without it! Depending on your reasons, you might decide to compromise like our Hip Sidekick Alyssa did with her husband.

“We use top sheets because they are breezy and refreshing, according to my husband. I love the fluffy comforters but if we don’t have a top sheet, he instantly feels like the duvet is too hot.” – Alyssa

3. It makes more laundry.

open front load washing machine with towel hanging out of door

Honestly, though. Who in the world wants to make more laundry for themselves? I know I sure don’t! Some of you might disagree on whether or not this actually makes life easier, but what it boils down to is how often you actually need to clean your bed. My Hip Sidekick, Marley, and I agree that for us, not using a top sheet definitely creates more laundry.

“I use a top sheet on my bed; otherwise, I’d want to wash my duvet cover once a week, and that would be such a pain!” – Marley

Whereas my other Hip Sidekick, Stacy, thinks keeping one off the bed just makes life a heck of a lot easier!

“We don’t use sheets in our house, because why would I? It’s just more to launder… and this momma does not need more! All of our beds have fitted sheets and comforters. That’s it. No hospital corners for me.” – Stacy

4. Top sheets keep the bed feeling more fresh.

Top bed Sheets

There’s nothing like crawling into a bed after a long day and cozying up with fresh, clean, and crisp sheets. That’s until you might get a little too hot. Adding a top sheet can create a cool barrier helping keep you from overheating with a heavy blanket or comforter. Not only that, but it provides an extra layer that gives you the option to take some blankets off if you tend to get too hot.

“I use a top sheet! I feel like it keeps my comforter cleaner. I can also kick off my comforter and use just the sheet if I get too hot.” – Jennifer

5. It might be too much of a hassle!

pair of feet hanging off white bed with bright yellow lights in background

Frustrated about making your bed with all those layers? A top sheet might not be your best option. I found that so many people complain about what a hassle they can be, and I have to say, they have a great point! Not only is tucking them in a pain, but more times than not, they become lopsided or bunched-up at the bottom. Um, no thanks! Often times, that seems to be enough for sleepers to ditch top sheets altogether. Plus, what if you want your feet out when you sleep? The last thing you should need to stress over is yanking at your sheets when you’re trying to get comfy.

“I definitely do not use a top sheet. Like there’s literally no point in having one! I love my comforter by itself, and I just wash it when I need to! Makes life so much easier when I make my bed, too.” -Amber

6. You change your mind seasonally.

flannel car printed sheets in a red target cart

The seasons, whether hot or cold, may influence your decision to have a top sheet. When cold weather comes, some people look forward to crawling in bed with some warm and cozy flannel sheets. Come spring or summer, you may be ready to throw them off the bed. No matter what you’re sheets game is, it’s okay to change your mind. 😉

7. Top sheets are just too good to pass up.

girl with brown hair laying on white sheets

If you’ve recently bought some amazing new sheets as our whole team did, you know that you want to use up every single piece of them that you can! When you find a good sheet set, you just need to stick with it. No need to explain yourself, we get it. They’re just too cozy to pass up! “Top sheet on”, friends!

By the way, if you’re in the market for some new sheets, here are two of our team favorites:

Threadmill sheets tag

So, what’s our top sheet vs. no top sheet verdict?

While having a top sheet or not is totally your preference, we cast our team votes and decided while there are benefits to having one versus not, we ultimately can’t pass them up!

Yes, most of our team thinks you need a top sheet.

How do you feel about using a top sheet?

Let us know in the comments below!

Sara ( loves sharing decor that inspires people on a budget and finds joy in traveling to new places.  

Our team LOVES these 5-star rated Pillows!

Sara is a self-taught blogger and photographer with 5 years of experience having work featured in various building, travel, and fashion publications, most notably Bassett Furniture and Fossil.

Join The Discussion

Comments 56

  1. Sara

    5) I don’t tuck the top sheet in. I just let it hang. I’m not trying to impress anybody.

    • Amber (Hip Sidekick)

      Thanks for sharing with us how you use your top sheet, Sara!

  2. Kristi S.

    I like a top sheet as I only have a throw on top. I also live in Texas so I could easily go to bed while it’s 55 and wake up when it’s 75! LOL So it’s nice to have thin layers sometimes. My daughters however don’t use top sheets because they end up shoved to the bottom of the bed and it drove me crazy. We just stopped putting them on their beds.

    • Amber (Hip Sidekick)

      Same here! I do like having a top sheet, however many times I skip it for my kiddos as it will always end up at the end of the bed! Thanks so much for taking a moment to comment, Kristi S.!

  3. Corina

    I have always used a top sheet. When you are trying to get comfortable sleeping and a comforter is too heavy & warm, but the lightness of a top sheet feels just right. Also, I prefer a top sheet against my body instead of our comforter, it seems that the comforter would need to be washed more because it is against your skin. I shower at night, but some people shower during the morning-so they have a day’s worth of grime(this could be anything they came into contact that day & may not be seen by the naked eye) that they are taking to bed with them. I also wash my sheets once a week, unless they need it more for various reasons. We have a queen and two full beds that I change and wash. I wash the top sheets and pillow cases together. I then wash the fitted together, so nothing gets caught in the elastic corners. As you posted in another article, I do not use bleach, but hot water. My detergent is sensitive Tide(again from another post about a deal at Target and a GC) and vinegar in the softener compartment. I use woolen balls in the dryer and I add lavender EO to them for a relaxing sleep.

    • Amber (Hip Sidekick)

      Yes! I feel more comfortable with a top sheet too! Thanks for sharing with us, Corina! Great to hear how you have been washing up your sheets!

  4. ann

    I love having a top sheet. Can’t imagine making the bed without it. Sheets get washed weekly and I don’t want to have more work by washing a comforter every week. Love the feeling of getting in bed with freshly washed sheets!

    • Amber (Hip Sidekick)

      I love fresh sheets too! Thanks for sharing your thoughts with us, Ann! We sure appreciate it!

  5. AMY

    I do not like a top sheet, my husband did. I got a duvet set from Crane and Canopy and it seems to fit both of our needs. It is a crisp cotton, he likes, I like and making the bed is a cinch. I love a good fitted sheet (one with personality, please). After 25 years, we finally got this figured out 🙂

    • Collin (Mrs. Hip)

      Oh good! SO awesome that you both found something you like! Good to know what has worked best for you!

  6. Emilytwinmom

    We never use a top sheet. Hubs has his twin comforter, I have mine. I don’t feel him get into bed when he isnt trying to rip the blankets off me (I cocoon) now that we each have our own comforters. When I wash our bedding, I wash the duvets and the bottom sheet!

  7. Mvanderford

    I use a thin minky blanket as a top sheet. That way I don’t have to wash the big bulky comforter as often, but can still get all cozy in bed.

    • Collin (Mrs. Hip)

      Great idea! That does sound cozy! Thanks for sharing with us!


    I use a top sheet – my husband does not. We sleep in the same, king size, bed but we have fully separate bedding – aside from the fitted sheet of course 😉 He’s a human furnace and we both like to completely wrap ourselves up in the blankets .. never going back to sharing sheets/blankets every again! lol

    • Amber (Hip Sidekick)

      I like that idea, Samantha! My husband always wants less covers and I always want them all! LOL! We may need to try that! Thanks for the tip!

    • je

      I don’t share with my hubby either! We used to but I would always wake up in the middle of the night freezing because the hubs stole it all. We’ve been using separate blankets since.

  9. Eliza

    Always have a top sheet. What’s one more sheet when doing laundry? Seriously LOL
    PLUS having a top sheet keeps your comforter cleaner and less dead skin cells.

  10. Carol

    I always use one. A friend was stationed in Germany in the army about 25 years ago and then married a German girl he brought back to the U S. In Europe they only use fitted sheets. Each person has their own personal comforter. We found this surprising. Husband/wife can’t hog all the blankets that way. My son prefers it this way. He was hit by a car as a teen. Broke both bones in both legs below the knees. He cannot stand to have anything pulling on his feet or legs. Often does not sleep well because he cannot get comfortable. I let him do his own thing. He has a queen bed. I buy flat sheets at resale shops to use on his bed as the fitted wear out and there is usually a good selection of little warn flat ones for cheap! Just tuck them in!

    • Amber (Hip Sidekick)

      Oh wow! So glad your son is okay! Thanks so much for sharing what has worked best for him! I’m loving the idea of grabbing cheap flat sheets and using them for a fitted sheet!

  11. Sissi

    Though I love the concept. It does end up kicked down to the bottom. I’ve tried so many times but it tangles up with my legs too and I’m slightyly claustrophobic so I’ve just eliminated it. I once freaked out on how entangled I was I had to have my husband remove it while I laid still or I would have had a melt down.

    • Amber (Hip Sidekick)

      Aww, sorry to hear about that, Sissi! That does sound frightening. Thanks for sharing your experience with us! Always good to do what works best for you!

  12. Dana

    I quit using a top sheet years ago and slept better ever since. I use just a duvet, European style, nothing to come untucked. Easier to make the bed, more comfortable sleep. Even at hotels, I end up pulling the sheets out so they can move with me rather than confine me.

    • Amber (Hip Sidekick)

      My daughter feels the same way! She never likes the top sheet! Thanks for the feedback, Dana!

  13. Amy

    Love to hear about all the fun sheet ideas! I am in the market for new sheets. Do the threadmills ever go on sale?

    • Amber (Hip Sidekick)

      Hi Amy! Great question! Amazon prices fluctuate on a regular basis! We have seen them drop in price before! Hope that helps!

  14. Angie

    I like the look of a bed with just the fitted sheet and pillows, so instead of making up the bed, I take the flat sheet and comforter off, fold them and put them on a shelf until we go to bed at night. Overall, it saves a lot of time every day.

    • Amber (Hip Sidekick)

      Great idea, Angie! Thanks for the tip!

  15. Peaches

    Top sheets totally did not work with my adjustable bed. The sheet kept riding up while the rest of the covers were sliding off the bottom of the bed I finally just got rid of the top sheet and we don’t miss it at all.

  16. Mary

    All three of my son’s won t use a top sheet. I have tried to get them to use for but they end up balled up at the foot of the bed never to be used. They prefer blanklets, comforters and quilts to a top sheet. My husband and myself always have a top sheet.

    • Amber (Hip Sidekick)

      This sounds just like our house! My kiddos never keep the top sheet! I should just remove them! LOL!

  17. Mel

    You know you grew up in Alaska when…I still sleep on my bed with just a mattress sheet and a sleeping bag! Sometimes I use my duvet, but for that I just use the duvet and wash the cover every now and then.

  18. Sheets keep us clean

    I never heard of not using a top sheet. It is what keeps your bedding clean! Unless you wash your comforter weekly…then…yuck!

  19. Lisa D

    We have this dilemma in our home. I am from the midwest and grew up using a top sheet, my husband is European and has never used a top sheet. Instead, they use duvets that are washed as often as your sheet sets. Typically they also use separate duvets/comforters; meaning that on a king size bed you would each have your own full size duvet/comforter. I will never use a top sheet again. No more getting tangled up in the top sheet at night and I can’t tell you how much easier it is to make the bed!!

  20. Laura

    I’ve done it both ways. When I studied abroad and linens were provided by the school there was no top sheet and it didn’t both me not having one. At home I use a top sheet. However, looking at the duvet cover I have right now it would drive me insane not to have a top sheet, it has kind of a crinkle pattern on it and the snaps/buttons are on the part of the duvet that is not showing which would be next to your skin…that would drive me batty if that was right next to my skin.

  21. K

    For my husband and me, yes to the top sheet. For my two kids 4 and 7, no way. I didn’t want them getting tangled up in them when they were toddlers, and having just a comforter on top means that it’s easy for them to make their own bed from the age of two.

  22. Julie B

    I think your next topic needs to be “How often do you wash your sheets and towels?” Then get ready for the apocalypse!
    Everyone can do what works for them and is comfortable as far as I am concerned.

  23. Stephanie

    I’ve been top-sheet-free since adopting the down comforter / duvet route in the late 1980’s. If I travel, I’ve got to untuck the sheet so my feet don’t feel restricted. In the heat of the summer I do use an untucked top sheet as my “blanket” to snuggle under with no duvet.

  24. Sue

    I love my top sheet and would not be without one. During the summer months that is all you need sometimes.

  25. Laura

    Definitely top sheet! Love the feel and not having to wash the blankets as often!

    • Amber (Hip Sidekick)

      I like my top sheet too, Laura! Thanks for the feedback!

  26. Jessica

    The thing blowing my mind here is that people sleep with their comforter or duvet! Whaaaat?! I always thought these were just for decoration. We use a top sheet and two bed blankets tucked into the bottom and then fold the comforter down at night. I never considered using it as a blanket!

    • Rama

      I hope you are kidding! It’s insane to have something (a comforter!!) for decoration that you’d have to launder every so often!!

    • C

      I would consider a bedspread a decoration, but I don’t think those are even common anymore. A comforter is intended to provide comfort, or that is how I have always looked at it. We have various types of comforters and blankets in my house and they are all used for sleeping. I am not really a decorative type of person. I prefer things useful things.
      When I grew up my mom always had a fitted sheet, top sheet, blanket, and a comforter/quilt on every bed. If I did not want to use the comforter I would always fold it down, but it was always there to use if needed. I stopped using the top sheet and blanket in my teen years.

  27. Sarah

    My mother never put one on any beds in our house. Husband insisted on one.

    • Amber (Hip Sidekick)

      SO interesting on how each person’s experience can differ. Thanks for sharing, Sarah!

  28. Jessica

    One of the first (and best) things my husband and I did in our marriage was stop using a top sheet. It was a constant fight on who stole the sheet. Someone (usually me) was always left in the cold. And he refused to tuck it in so it always just ended up everywhere. We use a nice quilt on our bed to make it pretty and at night we take it off and both have separate blankets. No more arguing! No more coverless nights! But those flat sheets make great forts and beach throws.

    • Amber (Hip Sidekick)

      Thanks for sharing your experience, Jessica! I can totally relate! The top sheet never stays evenly distributed for us, and I too am the one left with less. LOL!

  29. tracey

    It’s a mixed bag in our house. I can’t imagine not having a top sheet, my husband and daughter feel the same way. I love the feel of that clean sheet, and would have to wash the quilt all the time which I feel would be a hassle. But when my sons were little guys and in bunk beds I never used a top sheet on their beds. It was so hard to make those beds and they had super soft comfy blankets they loved, so I just didn’t use them to make my life easier. Now, they think it is crazy to use a top sheet. They are both young adults and have never used a top sheet. They love the feel of a soft comfy blanket.

    • Amber (Hip Sidekick)

      My kids like the feel of a soft comfy blanket too, however I am still attached to a cool top sheet! Thanks for taking the time to comment, Tracey! Great to hear about your experience!

  30. Sue

    I love my top sheet. I remember as a kid getting into bed between the cool crisp sheets and still due. Can’t live without one.

    • Amber (Hip Sidekick)

      YES! I agree, Sue! I LOVE cool sheets too! 🙌

  31. Mod Mom

    I know this is TMI but if you sleep in the nude a top sheet is a necessity. Otherwise I would have to wash my blankets weekly. Teen hates to use the top sheet. It ends up on the floor or balled up!

  32. C

    Nobody in my house uses a standard flat sheet. When I use one I tend to get wrapped up in it and I hate feeling like a burrito. My daughter has sensory needs and she uses a Lyra sheet on top of her fitted sheet, but she has never used a standard flat sheet. I don’t really care for cool sheets. I like my bed to be warm.
    When it is time to change the sheets I strip everything off the bed and wash it all at once. Our blankets/comforters get washed just as often as our sheets. I would do the same even if we used a flat sheet, though.

    • Amber (Hip Sidekick)

      Great to hear what you prefer most, C! Thanks for sharing with us!

  33. Misti

    No top sheet for me. I stopped that years ago and was the best thing ever. I use a light weight comforter and its perfect. 🙂

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