Battle of the Bedding: Duvets vs. Comforters

published Nov 10, 2016
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(Image credit: Photos by Lianna Utely )

Duvet cover plus insert versus comforter? It’s a debate as old as time (or at least, as old as duvets and/or comforters.) Chances are, whichever side you happen to reside on, you’re pretty darn adamant about it being the right side. We’re playing Switzerland here (even though we certainly have our own opinions…that are obviously correct), and looking at the pros and cons of each bedding option.

(Image credit: William Strawser)



  • No-fuss. A comforter stays put and rarely shifts/twists, making it so much lower maintenance in terms of composition than its duvet cover cousin. Plus, it’s a one-package deal (meaning you don’t have to go on a hunt for a properly fitting insert, either.)
  • Good for the coordination-challenged. If mixing and matching shams and throw pillows is not a forte of yours, a bed-in-a-bag comforter set is going to be the best option for you.


  • Not always easy to wash. Check the label on the comforter you might be considering (or the one you currently have.) Some can be thrown in the wash like a normal blanket, but others need to be dry cleaned.
  • May need a top sheet. When a comforter is dry-clean only, it’s recommended to use a top sheet (since you can wash that regularly.) If you make your bed every day, tidying up the top sheet can add a few minutes to the routine.
  • Seems to go flat easily. We’ve never met a bed-in-a-bag comforter that stayed fluffy and luxurious for extended periods of time. There’s typically less fill in comforters, which mean they will get lumpy and flat much faster than a down duvet insert, no matter how much you try to fluff it.
(Image credit: Samara Vise)

Duvet Cover + Insert


  • Easily washable. Once you strip a duvet cover from the duvet (the down or synthetic blanket insert), you can easily throw it in the wash like a regular sheet. This is particularly helpful if you have a smaller or stackable washing machine.
  • Less steps to a made bed. Since the duvet cover is removable and easily laundered, it can essentially replace the top sheet, giving you one less thing to have to fight with when making the bed.
  • Perfect for the fickle decorator. Duvet covers are often less expensive than comforters, so it’s easy and cost effective to change the look of your bedroom by swapping out your duvet cover. Plus, you’re likely to find far more style options than you would comforter sets.


  • Doesn’t always stay in place. Duvet cover + insert enemies are quick to call this con out. No matter how much you pin, tie and pray to keep the duvet cover in place, it rarely stays where it should. Unless you readjust every day, you’re likely to end up with a totally twisted bedding set.
  • Finding the right sized duvet insert can be tricky. Often, duvet covers are square in shape, or come in a full/queen, so digging up a down or synthetic duvet that is just the right size (or a few inches larger on each side like recommended for ultimate fluffiness) can feel near impossible. A high-quality, properly sized duvet can also be pricey, but once you have the perfect match, sleeping feels like a total luxury.

So, now that we’ve presented you with the pros and cons of each bedding type, we want to hear from you – duvet or comforter?