For someone like me, who could easily bury themselves under a pile of quilts, duvets, and pillows, it's hard to imagine a bed with just the bare essentials. My husband, on the other hand, seems immune to the cold, which results in our bed consisting only of a fitted sheet, top sheet, a single pillow each, and a light quilt. If this sounds like your bedding arrangement too, then we might just be out of touch with the current trend: many are skipping the top sheet altogether. Let’s dive into the why.

The humble top sheet originally had a hygienic purpose. It served as a barrier between our bodies and heavier bed covers like duvets, quilts, and comforters. This meant that while the sheets and pillowcases required frequent laundering, the heavier, bulkier items did not. Suzanne Pollak, founder of the Charleston Academy of Domestic Pursuits, states, “A proper bed requires a bottom sheet, a top sheet, a blanket, and then another top sheet as a coverlet. That’s the traditional setup.”

So why is the once-essential top sheet losing its place? A few reasons have emerged. One of the primary ones is the ease of making the bed. Without the need to tuck in a flat sheet, you can simply throw a duvet or quilt over the fitted sheet, and voila! Also, the problem of the top sheet wrapping around one's legs and disrupting sleep is a common complaint. It might sound trivial, but many people are actively deciding to do away with this bed linen.

Image Source: Boll & Branch

The trend has some numbers backing it up too. Parachute, a linen company based in Los Angeles, has revealed that about 40% of their clientele show preference only for the fitted sheet, expressing no interest in its flat counterpart. Consequently, they've adjusted their offerings to cater to this demand.

In conclusion, whether to use a top sheet or not boils down to personal choice. However, it seems that a significant portion of the newer generation – millennials, I'm looking at you! – have made their decision clear: the top sheet might just be a relic of the past.