400 vs 600 Thread Count Sheets

When selecting sheets, the chore can be intimidating. The shopper is looking for sheets and thread count keeps popping up and being in the way. What is thread count and why is it important? The ad for the sheets says 400 thread count or 600 thread count but doesn't explain what the difference is between a 400 thread count sheet and a 600 thread count sheet. 
Thread count is the number of fibers woven into a square inch of fabric. This is only true if the sheet is woven as a single ply yarn and not a twisted yarn usually referred to as 2 ply or more. 400 thread count single ply means 400 single threads were woven into a square inch and 600 means 600 single ply threads were woven into a square inch. The higher the count the softer the sheet will be. Beware of 2 ply or more that claim 400 thread count, that means that the real thread count per inch is 200 with 2 ply twisted yarn. The manufacturer had two twisted shorter threads and counted each thread but only wove them 200 threads per square inch. This is still considered 400 thread count.
The important fact is if you want a soft, easy care sheet that feels almost silken with a satiny finish that will last a long time the 400 count or 600 count sheets must be single ply. When you feel a 2 ply or more ply sheet, it will feel rougher and be heavier on the sleeper than the single ply sheets. Multiple ply sheets will not last as long and will fray quicker due to the shorter fiber used to twist together to create the long fiber. If the manufacturer is using a long fiber of single ply yarn, the sheet will be smooth and soft and durable giving you a longer lasting sheet set that will give comfort and style much longer than 2 or more ply sheets.
Buying a high thread count sheet like 400 or 600 with a single ply yarn that can hold up wash after wash and still come out soft and luxurious is the best buy you can make. The single ply high thread count sheets have a superior selection of colors like burgundy, chocolate, blue and many more to choose from.