What is Down Fill Power?
Technically speaking fill power is a measurement of the amount of space one (1) ounce of down (as shown in the cylinders below) will occupy in cubic inches when allowed to reach its maximum loft.
For example, one (1) ounce of 800 fill power goose down will loft to 800 cubic inches. So 850 fill power will 'bloom' or 'loft' higher than 800 fill power. The higher the fill power the larger the down cluster. Larger down clusters will loft higher; sleep softer, last longer and sleep warmer.
Fill power facts:
- The higher the fill power the larger the down clusters.
- The larger the down cluster the higher the quality.
- The higher the quality the longer it will retain its loft and firmness.
- The larger the down cluster the more mature the bird from which it came.
- The larger the down cluster the more air it traps.
- The larger the down cluster the higher it will loft.
- The larger the down cluster the better the insulating power.
- The larger the down cluster the lighter the down pillow, down comforter or feather bed will be.
Three (3) Fill power Myths:
- The higher the fill power the firmer the pillow. NOT True.
- The higher the fill power the heavier the pillow. NOT True.
- The higher the fill power the higher the fill weight. NOT True.
Fill Power vs Fill Weight
We see this all the time fill weight and fill power but what’s the difference between the two? So this is one of those questions that we get a lot and people think that fill weight and fill power are the same thing but the reality is fill weight is a measurement of how much material, in terms of ounces, we put inside the shell of the pillow to create a given density, soft, medium, firm or extra firm or thickness. While fill power is a measure of quality and cubic inches so the higher the fill power the higher the quality and the larger the down cluster. Just to give you some perspective on the difference between those qualities a 600 fill power down cluster is a little bit smaller than a US dime but an 800 fill power down cluster is larger than a US Quarter and has the maximum loft and the highest quality but it takes a lot longer for you to have such a high quality material that becomes that large that’s why it’s so much more expensive. So I wanna look for the high fill power 800 or 850 if I want the best? Absolutely.
What does down fill power mean for pillows:
Fill power represents the size and quality, loft and how long a pillow will retain its firmness. The higher the fill power the higher the quality, the higher it will loft and the longer it will "retain its firmness" (i.e. years it will last). DO NOT use fill power as a "measure of firmness", 850 fill power down pillows are NOT firmer than 650 fill power down pillows. However, the 850 fill power pillow is higher quality and will last longer. Firmness (i.e. soft, medium, firm, extra firm) is determined by, fill weight, adjusted by the amount of down inside the pillow shell. For example, our standard soft 800 fill power pillow contains (12 oz.) while the medium contains (14 oz.) firm contains (16oz.) and extra firm has (19 oz.) stuffed into the pillow shell.
What does fill power mean for down comforters:
Fill power represents quality, loft and how warm a down comforter will sleep. The higher the fill power the higher the quality. The higher the fill power the higher your down comforter will "puff up" and loft. If you are looking for a big billowy down comforter then you will want to look at our Quality Rest™ Winterweight down comforter or our Natural Nights™ Winterweight down comforter. They will loft the highest, last the longest and sleep the warmest.
What does fill power mean for Feather beds:
Fill power represents quality, loft and longevity. Fill power is a very important factor for a item like a feather bed given that all your weight will be compressing the down clusters underneath you for, hopefully, 8 hours. The larger the down cluster the higher the quality. The higher the quality longer it will retain its loft and firmness. DO NOT use fill power as a "measure of firmness", 850 fill power down feather beds are NOT firmer than 650 fill power down feather beds. However the 850 feather bed will last longer.
Double-Shell, Baffle Box, 3 Channel designs:
We use a double-shell design for our down pillows to further enhances the longevity of your down pillows. We use a baffle box design for our down comforters so that the down clusters are free to reach their maximum loft and fluffiness. We use a baffle box design and a 2” gusset for our down feather bed or mattress toppers to allow the down clusters to reach their maximum loft while providing you with the greatest support.
As a consumer you should be looking for both the highest quality down, determined by using fill power, but also be looking for a design to allow the down fill to reach it maximum loft. The design that allows down to reach its maximum loft is a baffle box design like all of our premium down comforters and feather beds (save the classic). A baffle box design allows the down, not the feathers (we don't use feathers in our any of our down comforters) to reach their maximum loft thus providing you with the maximum amount of insulation to keep you cozy warm at night.
We have chosen these designs because they are the most efficient designs for allowing the down to reach it's maximum loft. Whether we like it or it not quality alone doesn't always win the day but big billowy and all fluffed up down comforters sure do look better than flat down comforters.
These designs made from single-ply Egyptian cotton shells with double stitching and sateen corded edges stuffed with RDS certified ultra-premium Hungarian goose down from mature birds living in the coldest of climates producing the larger down clusters are decidedly more expensive to produce and represent the finest luxury down pillows, down comforters and feather beds in the world.