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Sateen vs Silk: Which Should You Prefer?


Navigating the differences between fabrics and fabric weaves can be overwhelming for someone who isn’t familiar with them. Sateen looks like satin, but is soft like silk… but what’s the difference really?

What Is Silk?

Silk is a natural fiber that is produced by silk worms. Silkworms were first domesticated around 5,000 years ago and ever since then, the production capability of the silkworm has increased over 10 times its original capacity. When its woven into fabric, it’s soft, strong, and the best of it, mulberry silk, isn’t cheap by any means.

Many different types and quality levels of silk exist, including silk that is made into different weaves to achieve different textures and serve different purposes.

Chiffon: This is a popular weave of silk, but it tends to be very transparent, so it should be used with other fabric behind it.

Charmeuse: This is what you’re thinking of when you think of “silk”. It’s the most well known weave that silk comes in and one of the most luxurious.

What Is Sateen?

Sateen is fabric of a satin weave that is made with cotton instead of silk or synthetics. Because it’s actually a satin weave, the look and feel is associated with the silk that high end satin fabrics are often made with. It’s warm in the winter time, so it’s perfect for a set of winter sheets.