How to Make Hospital Corners on Your Bed in 7 Easy Steps

published Jan 14, 2023
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corner of bed/mattress being made showing a sheet with hospital corners
Credit: Tom Hoerup

Lots of components contribute to how cozy a bed feels — the type of mattress, the weight of the blanket, and the thread count of the sheets, to name a few. But no matter how fancy your bedding is, it’s hard to get a good night’s sleep when your top sheet won’t stay put neatly under the blanket, resulting in a frustrating lump beneath the covers when you’re trying to sleep. 

One way to keep your bed feeling cozy all night? Hospital corners! Learn how to create them on your bed with these easy steps.

What are hospital corners? 

According to Lily Cameron, a cleaning supervisor at the U.K.-based home maintenance company Fantastic Services, “hospital corners” are a bedsheet-folding technique meant to look visually pleasing and make bedsheets difficult to kick off at night. Many hospitals and hotels use the technique — hence the name — but it’s also a simple way to make your bed look and feel neat. “Essentially, it’s a beautifully clean and crisp line that runs diagonally down the corner of the mattress,” Cameron says. 

Credit: Tom Hoerup

How to make hospital corners, step-by-step

You don’t need a medical degree to get the job done. That said: You may need to practice the technique a few times before you nail it. Cameron says a fold’s position and how tightly it should be pulled depend on the sheet’s fabric and style. The fold in a percale cotton sheet, for instance, may be easier than in a sateen sheet. No matter what style sheets you have, you can create your own hospital corners by following these expert-recommended steps. 

Step 1: Put the fitted sheet on the bed. 

First, place a fitted sheet on your mattress, ensuring it’s secured well around the edges. 

Step 2: Drape your flat sheet over the bed. 

Line up the top of the sheet with the top of the mattress, then spread all the other three sides so they’re hanging evenly off the bed. “This will ensure a perfect hospital corner is created,” says Cameron. 

Step 3: Tuck the sheet at the foot of the bed. 

Next, tuck the flat sheet into the foot of the bed under the mattress. Make sure you only do the bottom width of the bed, and not the sides, which should hang off for now.

Step 4: Tuck one of the sides.

Pick a side and bring the hanging, untucked corner of the flat sheet to the top of the bed. Grab the bottom of the sheet, a few centimeters in, and not the corner. Place it at a 45-degree angle across the top of the mattress. When you’re finished, you should have a leftover section that’s still hanging off.

Step 5: Tuck the third side.

Make the leftover hanging section really nice and tight and tuck it into the bottom of the bed. You should have a second tuck into the corner of your mattress.

Step 6: Form your diagonal crease. 

Pull down the section that you positioned at a 45-degree angle down. Place your hand along the top part of the mattress, right where its side meets its top. Using the other hand, bring the flat sheet back down to be tucked in, allowing it to fold over the hand that’s pressed up against the mattress. A diagonal crease should begin to form.

Step 7: Make the final tuck.

Make the final tuck-in, keeping the sheet as tight as possible. Everything should be tight and smooth except for a visible clear crease in a diagonal fold on the sheet.

Not quite getting it? For faster and better results, Cameron recommends finding a video tutorial online of someone creating hospital corners and keep repeating the steps until you get it right. Here’s to a cozier bed and better sleep!