Thread count

Thread Count in Bamboo Bedding Explained

When browsing bed sheets online, you’ll quickly notice cotton sheets use thread count as a synonym for quality.

Egyptian cotton sheets might have thread counts in the high hundreds, even 1,000 or 1,200. But you won’t see those same numbers on bamboo bed sheets.

There are a few good reasons why 250-350TC (thread count) is standard for soft and smooth bamboo bed sheets.

What does thread count mean?

Thread count (TC) refers to the number of fabric strands per square inch of fabric. The number comes from counting up the horizontal and vertical threads. So 1,000 thread count cotton might have 500 horizontal and 500 vertical strands.

But here’s the big secret in bedding: materials matter more than thread counts.

For example, 300 or 400 thread count bamboo will be noticeably softer than the equivalent cotton sheet. Not even 1,000TC Egyptian cotton can compete with the softness and quality of bamboo.

Do bamboo sheets have a thread count?

Yes, bamboo bed sheets have a thread count. Like any fabric, bamboo bed sheets are woven from thin fibres called bamboo rayon.

Here is where the difference between bamboo and cotton becomes noticeable.

Bamboo’s naturally strong, supple fibres outperform cotton on every score. Bamboo fabric is softer, hypoallergenic, more breathable and durable, and better at wicking away moisture. So when you compare bamboo to cotton or silk sheets, don’t let thread count comparisons suck you in.

What is the best thread count for bamboo bed sheets?

Most bamboo fabric has a thread count between 150 and 400. At OLARA, we use 500 thread count by Australian standards (or 400TC by American standards) – this is at the premium end for bamboo material, meaning it doesn’t get smoother or softer than these sheets!

Does a higher thread count mean better quality?

Thread count quickly goes out the window when comparing different materials. For example, a 100% bamboo fabric with a 300TC will be softer, smoother and more comfortable than Egyptian cotton with a thread count of 1,000 or even higher.

Fabric quality depends on:


Cotton fibres tend to be shorter and coarser than bamboo. Egyptian cotton is silkier but significantly more expensive. Bamboo rayon fibres are also softer on the environment and sensitive skin compared to cotton, making bamboo bed sheets a better all-round choice.


Packing more threads into a square inch of fabric does not necessarily yield a softer material. Sateen weaves, for example, are smoother than percale because of the fibre arrangement.


100% bamboo rayon (also called bamboo viscose) will always be softer than bamboo-cotton blends due to the coarser cotton fibres mixed into the blend. Similarly, cotton-polyester blends use synthetic polyester to mimic bamboo’s softness. But there really is no substitute for the real thing.

Count on quality: OLARA Australian-owned bamboo bedding

Unlike cotton, bamboo bed sheets do not need to make claims about high thread counts. The feeling says it all. Made from renewable, consciously-sourced bamboo, OLARA 100% bamboo bed sheets are softer than high thread count cotton fabric can ever hope to be.

Plus, they’re naturally gentle on sensitive skin. Discover our extensive range of high-quality bamboo bedding, delivered to your door with 30-day comfort guarantee.

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