Cotton sheets are such an excellent investment that can last for generations. But in the wide range of options available on the market, shopping becomes more and more difficult. We can’t hide that we’ve been dying to try the California Design Den 400 cotton bed sheets, which were rated as one of the “Top 10 best cotton sheets for your money” by none other than Oprah Magazine.
Now, you’re probably even more intrigued. The wait is over because we’re finally ready to spill the truth.
If you’re just as excited as we were to try this set, keep on reading to check out our full California Design Den 400 cotton sheets review.
Knowing the best and worst characteristics of a product can help you make an instant decision if you’re not ready to go through a lengthy review. These are the top pros and cons we felt are worth mentioning:
- No chemicals used
- Eco-friendly, sustainable
- Not wrinkle-free
- Pillowcases don’t fit well
- Not very breathable
What are California Design Den 400 cotton sheets Made of?
The California Design Den 400 cotton bed sheets are made of 100% long-staple cotton. The brand uses pure single-ply yarns with 400 threads per square inch. They only choose long-staple cotton that is cleaned from impurities. Many people will conclude right from the start that 400 thread count is low for a fabric such as cotton since it can go up to 1800 and even more for some products. But, the quality and attention to detail rate this set very high up, even as high as several Egyptian cotton sheets.
There is no doubt that the brand really focuses on quality craftsmanship, and you can notice that in almost every detail.
According to the brand, the sheets are stitched by a skilled artisan and later checked by hand. We’re here to do all the work for you and deliver the results on whether these claims are true.
The set is available in seven sizes: Twin, Twin XL, Full, Queen, King, Split King, and California King. All sets come packed with two pillowcases, except for Twin and Twin XL, which are delivered with one pillowcase. Thankfully, there is also the option to add two more pillowcases for sizes Full, Queen, and King. When it comes to colors and prints, there are 29 options to choose from.
The material features a rich, gorgeous, smooth sateen finish that satisfies the senses of even the pickiest shoppers. You might have heard that cotton is a bit crisp, but it gets much comfier as you wash it and use it.
Our California Design Den 400 cotton sheets review
This is the part where we get more into detail about the comfort, production, quality, maintenance, and our favorite and least favorite things about the sheets.
Comfort is vital when buying bed sheets. This set reminded us of what quality cotton feels like. When reviewing comfort as a characteristic, we took several different points of view. Aside from the scientific side that includes tensile, shear, and smoothness, we made sure to spend a few weeks sleeping on the set to research the overall experience.
Our final thoughts land at 8.1 for comfort. Yes, the sheets are soft, but as soft as cotton could get on the first try. The material got more comfortable and buttery after a few washes in the machine.
What’s interesting is that the brand included a ‘head’ and ‘foot’ indicator on the inside of the fitted bottom sheet so that you always know how to place the sheets on the mattress. Each piece also has a small tag with a size indicator so that you never have to be confused if you own more than one set. This is something that is both smart and handy.
In general, the set fits great in every size that we got. We didn’t notice any corners slipping off the mattress, which can often appear as a problem for elastic fitted sheets. One of the downsides that we want to mention is that the pillowcases run a bit small, but we understood it’s a problem the brand is working on. So, potential customers probably shouldn’t worry about this anymore.
To further explain our final score, we want to include the grades of 8 for tensile, 8.2 for shear, and 8 for smoothness. Although they are comfortable to sleep in, we have to admit that we expected a bit more, hence the 8.1 grade.
Our general impression regarding the quality is that these sheets are well made. They are not too thin or too thick, plus they are available in a wide range of colors and fun prints.
When it comes to appearance, the California Design Den 400 cotton sheets do look a bit shinier and silkier in person. If you are into that vibe, you’ll definitely like them. However, everyone in the market for a classic cotton set without a shiny finish should look elsewhere and opt for percale weave. Since we ordered several different sizes of the sets, most of them featured terrific stitching.
Unfortunately, a few threads were hanging on the fitted sheet that ruined our first impression. For most people, this is not a big deal, and it can be solved within seconds. We had to mention it because the brand states that every one of their sheets is hand-inspected. The elastic on the fitted sheet, on the other hand, looks amazing.
Aside from the two or three hanging threads, we loved all the attention to detail that California Design Den pays, combined with the excellent color match in-person to the pictures available online. Even the darker shades, which are usually a miss, look the same as in the photos.
When you compare the price to the excellent quality that you’re getting, this set of sheets is an absolute bargain. After weighing everything on our ‘quality’ scale, we reached a score of 8.2 out of 10.
It’s so great to know that California Design Den is a brand committed to delivering ethically-produced sheets. This is still an uncommon thing in the bedding industry, so we highly appreciate it. According to the brand, each set is free of harmful chemicals using only pure, natural, long-staple cotton. At the same time, they extensively inspect the final products to check thread count, performance, tear strength, shrinkage, and more.
The sheets are made in a factory in India that follows all protocols and is rated with the highest score by ITS Global Standards. Both the product and the facility go through regular audits. Thankfully, this is a biodegradable fabric that is ocean safe and can last for many years before you notice the damage. In other words, you won’t have to purchase a new set every few years, meaning you’ll be making a long-term investment.
The lack of chemicals in the production and the fact that the sheets are made of 100% cotton make them suitable for people prone to allergies. Skin conditions and allergies can get worse if you’re not sleeping on the right bedding. So, if this is one of your concerns when shopping for sheets sets, go ahead and press ‘add to cart.’
We couldn’t help but rate California Design Den with a 8.9 out of 10 for their efforts to protect the environment, their workers, and customers as well.
As mentioned before in our California Design Den 400 cotton sheets review, this set is made using a sateen weave. Yes, many of you will wonder what that means, so let us give you a hand. This type of weave features a shinier finish, with more of a silky feel to the fabric. Compared to percale, it’s also less breathable and a bit thicker.
What we wanted to say is that sateen weave cotton sheets are more suitable for winter months and cold sleepers. We did test them out and found that they retain heat on nights when the temperatures are high. For full disclosure, this is not the hottest set that we’ve slept on, but we would love for it to be more breathable. Everyone who is looking to purchase bedding that will keep them warm during cold months will be more than happy with the 400 cotton bed sheets from California Design Den.
The final score for this set’s thermal conductivity is 7.1, for the thickness gets a 7.1, while the weight we rated at 9 out of 10.
Easy Maintenance (8.8/10)
Cotton is not a hard fabric to maintain as long as you know the right tips. When you receive your California Design Den 400 cotton sheets packaging, it will include a printed card with all the details you need to know regarding maintenance. That’s such a great idea that can help many customers purchasing their first set of cotton bedding and are not sure how to take care of it.
Cotton wrinkles easily, and that’s a fact. However, there are certain tricks you can implement so that your sheets are not as creasy. Start by washing them on a regular wash cycle, but make sure that you don’t leave them in the washer too long after the cycle is done. Remove them as soon as possible and transfer them into the dryer. Don’t use high heat, and once the dryer is done, take the sheets out right away. This should do the job. It’s even better if you can hang the sheets to air dry. It doesn’t sound like too much work, plus it brings great results.
To be completely transparent and truthful with you, we have to mention that the sheets are not extremely soft once you receive them. But, remember that they will become softer and softer after every cycle in the washing machine. That’s the thing about cotton. It’s meant to be a durable material that becomes more enjoyable the more you use it. If you can’t deal with crisp fabrics and don’t want to wait weeks for a softer finish, you might want to look elsewhere. Either way, these perfectly match the criteria of great cotton sheets that don’t require too much attention to look and feel good.
Let’s not forget that even after many washes, the color of these sets does not fade. That speaks even higher about quality and maintenance. Therefore, this California Design Den bedding scores an 8.8 out of 10.
Final verdict 8.3
Indeed, these sheets didn’t check every single requirement on our list, but they did great in most departments. One of the biggest pros is sustainable, eco-friendly production that we can’t stop ourselves from mentioning. The quality and price also deserve high praise. We feel that most customers will appreciate the craftsmanship, except for the low percentage who are very picky.
Breathability did appear like a downside, but that’s a subjective thought and might not happen for everyone. Last but not least, maintaining the set is made easier thanks to the instructions from California Design Den.
It’s time to wrap things up and give you our final verdict. Spending several months on cotton sheets can really grow on you. The longer you use them, the more you appreciate natural fabrics and good quality. That happened to us with this set, so the overall grade in our California Design Den 400 sheets review is 8.3 out of 10.
[FAQ’s] Consumer questions & answers
Are these sheets wrinkle-free?
Cotton sheets are not wrinkle-free, unlike microfiber. Be prepared to see wrinkles and creases, but you can significantly reduce them if you follow the company instructions.
How deep are the pockets?
These sheets are meant to fit mattresses that go up to 16 inches in depth and include a fully elasticized fitted sheet.
Does the brand offer warranty for the customers?
Yes, California Design Den offers you a 30-day return policy if you don’t like their product.
What about their customer service?
The customer service is amazing and usually replies within minutes. They’ll be happy to help you with all the questions and guarantee customer satisfaction.