How to Buy a Duvet for Winter

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How to Buy a Duvet for Winter

When the weather turns cold, many UK residents turn to their wardrobes and storage chests to break out extra blankets to keep them warm during the winter. While the layer approach to bedding provides abundant warmth and comfort, there is a bedding solution that only requires one layer. Duvets represent a single layer bedding that looks like, but does not act like, a comforter. Manufacturers construct duvets to take the place of the numerous bed sheets, blankets, and comforters that people use to maintain a warm bed. The level of duvet warmth depends on how it is constructed, and the material used as a duvet filling.

Consumers can find duvets at most bed shops, although they can garner better deals online at the leading auction site, eBay. Some eBay sellers offer near mint condition duvets at discounted prices. Consumers just need to know exactly what they want in a duvet. To gain that knowledge, consumers should perform research that includes the different sizes of duvets, the most common fillings used to construct duvets, duvet construction, and the meaning of a tog rating.

What Is a Duvet?

A duvet, which is also to referred to as a "doona" in Australia, is a type of bedding that replaces layers of blankets, quilts, sheets, and comforters. The one-layer, flat bedding is typically warm enough for sleepers, making it much easier for users to make their beds. Manufacturers fill duvets with high insulating material that can comprise down, feathers, silk, or synthetic fabrics. Duvets originated in the extremely cold regions of Northern Europe, and thus, most duvets are produced to provide warmth in any climate.

Comparing Duvets and Comforters

Many consumers mistakenly believe that comforters and duvets represent the same type of bedding. The term "comforter" was used the in 14th century to refer to a person or object that provided comfort. It took over 500 years before comforters became part of the bedding lexicon. Duvet derives from a French word that means "down", as in the down feathers that manufacturers use to produce duvets. Word origin is not the only difference between a duvet and a comforter.


Comforters match other bedding components, such as sheets and blankets. Users typically add a comforter as the top layer of multiple bedding layers. On the other hand, duvets are often the only part of the bedding. This means that duvets provide all of the warmth that someone needs. Duvets also do not necessarily match with other types of bedding. Duvets are sold separately from duvet covers, while comforters do not have covers.


While both duvets and comforters can be filled with silk, wool, down, or synthetic materials, the difference in the type of filling used to manufacture the most popular type of each bedding varies. The most popular duvets are constructed with goose down to provide superior warmth. Manufacturers produce the most popular type of comforters with synthetic filling to ensure durability.


Both duvets and comforters are sized according to standard bed sizes. For instance, users buy a king size duvet for a king-sized bed. However, manufacturers design comforters to be larger than beds, which means comforters hang over the sides of beds. Duvets are constructed to exactly fit bed surfaces.


Comforters retain their warmth and durability properties after numerous wash cycles. Duvets filled with natural materials require covers that users can machine wash. This means that typically comforters are easier to take care of than duvets.

Types of Duvets

Duvets requires consumers to consider a number of factors before making a purchasing decision. Colour, pattern, and thickness all play a role in which type of duvet to buy. The filling used to make a duvet is by far the most important factor to consider. Duvet fillings determine the warmth of a duvet, which manufacturers classify by tog ratings. There are four primary types of duvet fillings.

Wool Duvet

Wool is a warm and comfortable filling that works well in especially harsh winter climates. Wool traps body heat and it also provides cooling properties during the warmer months of the year. The cooling effect is due to wool’s capability to absorb perspiration and immediately releases it outside of the duvet. The downside of wool-filled duvets is the durability issue. Duvets filled with wool have much shorter lifespans than duvets filled with other materials.

Feather Duvet

Manufacturers use duck or goose feathers to produce this type of duvet. Feather duvets match the warming capability of wool-filled duvets, yet feather duvets are much lighter. Duvets constructed with feathers are considered much softer than other types of duvet fillings, which make feather duvets the most expensive type of duvet.

Cotton Duvet

Cotton duvets are typically used during the warmer months of the year. Cotton-filled duvets are lightweight and act as cooling agents, instead of providing warmth for users. This type of filling is the only filling not to receive a tog rating. Cotton duvet warmth is measured by the weight of the cotton filling.

Synthetic Duvet

Natural fibre duvets can cause allergic reactions amongst some users. Anyone who is allergic to cotton, feathers, or wool should consider purchasing a synthetic-filled duvet. Artificial duvets do not offer the same warming properties as natural fibres, but people who have allergies have no choice but to buy synthetic-filled duvets. Try to find a synthetic duvet made with lightweight hollowfibre to maximise warming properties.

Duvet Construction

Another factor that influences duvet quality is construction. Sewn-through constructed duvets have seams that penetrate through, thus pinching both sides of the shell. This is the most durable type of duvet construction. Manufacturers that use baffle duvet construction place fabric strips inside of duvets that form internal walls to keep the filling in place. Thus, baffle-constructed duvets typically provide the most warmth. Box-constructed duvets have seams that run perpendicular to each other across the duvet surface. This method also keeps fillings in place. Channel-constructed duvets have seams that run parallel to each other, which allows users to shift fillings from one side of a duvet to the other.

Duvet Sizes

Duvets come in sizes similar to bed sizes. Unlike comforters, it is not recommended that consumers buy oversized duvets to drape over bed sides. The following sizes measure in centimetres.

Duvet Size

Measurement (cm)

Small Single

75 x 190


90 x 190


135 x 190


150 x 200

Super King

180 x 200

Consumers can customise duvets to fit custom beds. Contact a duvet manufacturer to order a customised duvet.

Duvet Tog Rating

Tog is the UK bedding industry standard for measuring Duvet warmth. Some climates require less filling to achieve the same level of warmth. In addition, the four distinct seasons experienced by most UK citizens means that they should buy duvets that possess tog ratings commensurate with each season. Some manufacturers construct all-season duvets by creating a lightweight duvet for summer, a warmer duvet for autumn and spring, and then a combination of both duvets to form one for winter.

Lightweight summer duvets receive a tog rating between 3.0 and 4.5. Duvets constructed for use in autumn and spring have tog ratings of 7.0 through 10.5. Winter duvets fall within the 12.0 and 13.5 tog range. Another manufacturing advancement has been the production of duvets that possess different tog ratings for each half of a duvet. These are called compatibility duvets, which are perfect for couples who cannot agree on a uniform duvet warmth level.

Duvets for Children

Manufacturers produce duvets for children, but parents need to alter their warmth requirements slightly. Since children are smaller, duvets that cover them trap more warm air under the duvet. This increases the overall warmth of the bedding. Unless a child’s bedroom is extraordinarily cold, parents should buy lighter weight duvets that fall within the 4.5 and 9.0 tog range. Any tog rating above 9.0 may prove to be uncomfortable for a child. Duvets are not recommended for children under one year of age. Moreover, manufacturers recommend that children using duvets sleep in a room that is a temperature of at least 18 C.

Buying Duvets on eBay

If you know the size, design, and filling that you want in a duvet, then you should duvet shop on eBay to maximise your savings. Use eBay’s search engine to find the seller that matches all of your duvet criteria. Type keywords into the search engine, and then navigate through the search result pages until you find the right seller. Use specific keywords, such as "goose down duvets" or "mint condition duvet" to reduce the number of returned search result pages. Once you find the right seller, navigate to the seller’s product page to review accepted payment methods, return policies, and delivery terms.

Consider buying from eBay’s Top-Rated Sellers. These sellers have earned reputations for selling superior products and offering generous return timelines. eBay places a ribbon icon next to each qualified seller’s product photograph. You can also review customer feedback on seller product pages. Look for sellers who have garnered positive feedback for the past year and preferably have some positive feedback for selling blankets or comforters. You may also buy from duvet sellers who run eBay Stores. Once you establish a business relationship with a seller, inquire about buying directly from the seller.


When the winds pick up from the north and the temperature goes south, UK residents prepare their beds for the long winter. Many people add layers of bedding to provide warmth and comfort. However, a more efficient and less costly way to remain warm during the winter is to invest in a duvet. It took hundreds of years, but by the 19th century, people began to understand that this single layer of bedding provides as much, if not more, warmth than utilising numerous sheets, blankets, and comforters.

The one-layer answer to winter’s chill helps sleepers retain warmth with the use of wool, feather, or synthetic fillings. Feather duvets retain the most body heat, and thus, feather duvets receive the highest warmth rating measured by tog. Duvet construction also influences the warmth level of a duvet, with baffle-constructed duvets providing users with the most warmth. Duvets typically measure exactly across the surface of a bed, although users can order larger duvets that hang over the sides of a bed, as do comforters. Manufacturers have recently devised innovative duvet designs that include duvets that possess different tog ratings for each half of the duvet, which keep disagreeing couples content.

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