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The 4 Types of Blankets You Need to Know About

The 4 Types of Blankets You Need to Know About

Blankets are common items in the average home. And if you’re someone who especially loves comfort, you probably keep blankets on beds, folded over couches, draped over chairs, and neatly tucked into baskets on the floor.

But those seeking ultimate comfort might wonder what types of blankets are available on the market today.

What Types of Blankets Are There?

Bunch of types of blankets in grid-shaped shelving folded neatly into cubes

Maila Facchini/Shutterstock

Whether you’re looking for a lightweight throw, a soft and fuzzy blanket, a comforter with down feathers, or a large quilt, there are tons of blanket types to choose from.

Before we get into the different types of blankets there are, let’s take a look at the various materials you can choose from. These include:

  • Cotton
  • Down feather
  • Linen
  • Silk
  • Polyester
  • Woven Acrylic
  • Fleece
  • Microfiber
  • Vellux
  • Bamboo
  • Chenille
  • Wool
  • Fur

The different kinds of blankets you can buy often come in several of the materials listed above. For example, a quilt may be made of wool, cotton, or polyester. There are the following basic types of blankets:

  • Comforter
  • Throw
  • Duvet
  • Quilt
  • Weighted

There are certainly some more specific subcategories we can find among those blankets listed above, but we’ll keep things more general. 

Most Common Types of Blankets

There are so many materials and compositions that make up the types of blankets out there today, so we’ll take a look at each type and why it is or isn’t the best choice for you. 

1. Comforter

Comforter (a popular type of blanket) laid out on a bed built out of wooden pallets in a brick room

pornpan sangkarat/Shutterstock

Comforters are one of the most common kinds of blankets in the country. These blankets are most often used on beds, as they are thick, warm, cozy, and well-comforting! The basic comforter has three layers:

  • Top
  • Middle
  • Bottom

Typically, a comforter’s top and bottom layers are made from natural or synthetic, thin material, while the internal layer is stuffed with an insulating material. The most common fillers for comforters are:

  • Feathers
  • Down
  • Cotton
  • Wool

Different materials offer varying levels of softness, fluff, and warmth. In general, a thicker comforter will be warmer, while a thinner comforter will be cooler.

Comforters come in many different styles, colors, and patterns, allowing you to customize your bedroom’s appearance with just one basic piece.

2. Duvet

Photo of one of the most popular types of blankets, a duvet laid out on a bed


Duvets and comforters run in the same crowd and are often confused with one another. Duvets are very similar to comforters. They are used in the bedroom with the main purpose of keeping you warm while you sleep at night.

Duvets also come in the same materials as comforters and contain the same internal cushioning: cotton, down, polyester, wool, feather, etc. However, duvets are not meant to be used by themselves.

Duvets are typically very plain; many of them are simply white. That’s because the proper way to use a duvet is with a duvet cover. A duvet cover is similar to a sheet.

It’s a thin cover that goes over the duvet, protecting it from coming into contact with dirt, dust, oils, and more.

This cover stays in place using ties or snaps at each corner. When it comes time to wash it, you can remove the cover and throw it into the washing machine.

This saves you the trouble of washing a full-blown comforter. An additional benefit of a duvet cover is that it allows you to switch up your style in a quicker, easier, and less expensive way instead of buying a new comforter. 

3. Quilt

An older type of blanket, a quilt, laid out on a wooden floor next to a step


Quilts are the fancier, less-thick version of a comforter. Some people choose to use a quilt on their beds instead of a comforter.

Others keep their quilts in the living room, draped over couches and chairs. Though every quilt is unique in its design, each follows the same basic structure:

  • Top pattern
  • Inner filling
  • Large fabric backing

The top portion of the quilt is the design and pattern. A quilt stitches together a pattern of different fabrics, colors, and prints to make a unique and colorful design.

The backing is traditionally one solid piece of large fabric of one color with no design. On the inside, there is a small, thin layer of filling, typically cotton or wool.

Quilts are usually very lightweight, which is why not everyone chooses to use one as a comforter. Instead, they tend to make very nice additions to high-traffic rooms.

4. Weighted Blanket

Weighted type of blanket laid out on a bed in grey color and slightly wrinkled

Dario Pena/Shutterstock

Weighted blankets have become all the rage in the last few years. These blankets can come in various outer materials, but they purposefully add weight using beads, ball bearings, and other kinds of filling.

Research has shown that weighted blankets provide comfort and security, minimize anxiety, reduce stress, and improve sleep quality.

These blankets can weigh as much as 25 pounds and can be very expensive, but the benefits seem to be especially good for those with anxiety and depression.

Things to Consider

Now that you know the various options available to you, you can start to make some decisions. But what details are critical to consider when searching for the perfect blanket? This brief list of considerations should help:

  • What will the blanket be used for?
  • Do you live in a cold climate or a hot climate?
  • Do you want your blankets to match your style?
  • Does softness matter to you?
  • Do you want to be able to machine-wash your blanket?

Carefully think through the items above and use them to choose your perfect blanket.

Frequently Asked Questions

Woman with long brown hair laid out under a braided type of blanket and you can only see her arm and hand and hair


Lots of questions tend to come to mind whenever you’re considering a new piece for your home. Blankets are no exception.

If you still aren’t sure which way to turn, check out our FAQ section for some more answers.

How much do blankets cost?

A blanket’s cost is determined by size, materials used, and where it’s being purchased. The average cost scale for blankets is wide, with low-end blankets costing as little as $5 to high-end blankets as much as $150. In general, the blankets that will cost the most are:

  • Customized blankets/quilts
  • Weighted blankets
  • Cashmere
  • Fur
  • Heated blankets

Overall, it depends on what you’re looking for and where you look. One queen-size cotton comforter may be as little as $20, while another as much as $80.

Where should you put blankets in your home?

Everyone loves blankets, so there’s never really a wrong place to put them. However, you should aim to keep the right kind of blankets in the right locations. For instance, comforters and duvets are made for the bedroom, so they’re typically on the beds.

Quilts can go on the bed, or you can fold them nicely over the back of a couch or blanket rack. Throw blankets are called throw blankets for a reason. You can toss them over the arm of a chair or on a couch. Blankets are made to be used, so keep them in reach.

Some folks like to keep large baskets on the floor to store extra blankets. If you have several, you can keep one or two out and store the rest in a closet. It’s also nice to have an extra throw blanket at the end of your bed for those cold nights.

Can you wash any type of blanket?

You can wash any type of blanket, but it’s essential to know how to wash it. For best results, it’s always a good idea to follow the care instructions on the blanket’s tags. Generally, materials like cotton, wool, fleece, polyester, and other common materials are safe to wash at home.

Some wool blankets may be dry clean only, so be sure to check the tag. Some people wash their handmade quilts at home, but we recommend getting those types of blankets dry-cleaned to avoid ruining them. You can also wash weighted blankets at home, so long as they are under 20 pounds.

Anything heavier than that should go to the dry cleaner. You don’t need to dry clean a down comforter, but you may have to dry clean a down alternative comforter. Again, check the label to be sure. It’s also best to have silk materials dry-cleaned.

So, What Are the Types of Blankets?

There are several different types of blankets, from comforters to quilts and everything in between, but these on our list today are some of the most common.

You can use our guidelines to help you pick the best comforter to suit your needs and style.