3 Important Qualities of Down

Down duvet inserts, featherbeds and pillows are most desired for their abundance of softness and volume. Together, they provide your bed extra loftiness, creating a more luxurious, more inviting experience when you lay down.

Exceptionally soft, the graceful fluffiness of down makes it easy to sink into deep comfort. Down is completely washable and doesn’t become lumpy like other traditional bedding.

Down bedding is a thoughtful investment and lasts for decades. We’re often asked what to look for when choosing a down duvet insert, featherbed or pillow, so we’ve compiled a list of three important qualities to consider based on our decades of experience.

Feather Type

It’s important to know the difference between a down feather and a quill feather and how much of each feather is used in your down bedding. Down feathers are fine feathers located under protective exterior quill feathers. Down feathers are light, airy, and fluffy which lends to their loftiness. Down feathers don’t have a uniform structure which allows them to capture air and act as an insulator.

Exterior feathers, on the other hand, are known for their center quill. Quill feathers are larger, tougher, and heavier.  All down bedding use both feather types. Our Down Duvet Insert, Down Featherbed and Down Pillow are constructed using between 75%-90% white duck down feathers.

If you’re looking for bedding with high loft, choose bedding that is rich in down feathers.

Fill Power

Fill power is a measurement of loft and quality of down. The higher the fill power, the more loft and warmth the bedding provides. Fill power is determined by taking an ounce of down clusters and measuring how many cubic inches it creates.

The average fill power is 400-500; however, fill power lower than 500 is generally considered low quality because it is an indicator of the age of the duck.  Immature ducks create smaller down clusters which results in less loft and insulating power. 

For example, our Down Duvet Insert and Down Pillow both contain a fill power of 650, which means one ounce of down covers 650 cubic inches -- an indicator of high loft, insulating power, and overall quality. Our Down Featherbed has a fill power of 550. 

Certification

Above all, you’ll want to ensure the down bedding you purchase was produced responsibly.  Down production came under public scrutiny within the last decade after discovering the incredibly cruel practices of down suppliers. Look for Responsible Down Standard certification which acknowledges responsible practices were used in the down production.

Another important certification to look for is STANDARD 100 by OEKO-TEX® which indicates the textile manufacturer did not use harmful substances when producing the product. All our down products hold both certifications. 

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