Duvet Togs Explained: A Guide to Tog Ratings for the UK

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Did you know that some suppliers charge as much as £700 for bedding? At this price, it’s vital that you know the ins and outs of duvets!

You may have heard important terms that you don’t quite understand when out shopping for bedding. ‘Duvet tog ratings’ or ‘duvet tog count’ are always at the top of the list.

You know that they refer to the material, but you aren’t sure how they may impact your quality of sleep. Don’t worry – tog ratings are actually pretty easy to comprehend. However, it’s worth brushing up on your knowledge as the wrong bedding could affect your life in a big way.

With that in mind, below you’ll find everything you need to know about duvet togs in the UK, so that you never have to worry about making a costly mistake.

Tog ratings – what does it mean?

The word tog stands for “Thermal Overall Grade”. Put simply, your duvet’s tog rating acts as a measure of how well it will retain heat. The higher the value, the more effective (and warmer) your duvet will be at night.

Of course, bigger isn’t always better. According to Healthline, experts recommend that your body temperature should be around 18.3°C (65°F), give or take a few degrees. You’ll therefore need to factor in different conditions, especially when the seasons change.

If your bedroom is above 20°C and your duvet’s tog count is ten or above, you’ll likely feel uncomfortable at night. The material will be too thick for your skin to breathe and your body will struggle to regulate its temperature. On the flip side, a 3.5 tog value probably won’t be warm enough in winter.

The tog count has nothing to do with the durability or quality of bedding – that’s the thread count.

What are the different ratings?

Even this duvet tog guide can’t talk you through all of them! That’s not because there are too many to count, but because different suppliers provide duvets and bedding with different ratings.

As a rule, tog counts in the UK start at one and go up to fifteen. One – the lowest – is ideal for spring and summer, whereas fifteen is best suited for bitterly cold nights where you can’t seem to stay warm in bed. Here’s a basic breakdown:

  • 1 to 5 – Summer: Most people opt for duvets with a tog of between one and five as the fabric is breathable and counteracts the sticky conditions.
  • 7 to 10 – Spring and Autumn: The scale depends on which season you’re entering as you’ll need extra insulation in October and November and less in April and May.
  • 12 to 15 – Wintertime: The higher the tog count, the warmer your duvet will be as it will retain the most heat – perfect for those chilly nights.

Some people find that 10 is a perfect in-between tog count and is suitable for all seasons. It’s cool enough when the temperature rises and warm enough when it plummets.

How does an ‘all-seasons’ duvet work?

For those who find a 10-tog duvet a little too heavy at the peak of summer, an ‘all-seasons’ duvet could be a good option.

The way they work is simple – there are two separate pieces of material attached by velcro. The lighter one has a tog count of below five, while the heavier cover is about a nine. The great thing about them is that they’re individual duvets. As such, you can add or remove each one to adjust your bedding according to the season. This means in winter you can create a cosy duvet with a UK tog rating of thirteen and above.

Tog ratings for Summer

By now, you probably understand the basics of tog ratings like the back of your hand. “It’s lower in the summer, higher in the winter, and somewhere in-between for spring and autumn. We get it!”

But another nugget of information worth keeping in mind is your personal preference. Even if you know that between one and five is best for the summer, you need to decide which count is going to strike the perfect balance for your needs.

For example, some people prefer the feel of a heavier duvet regardless of the season. In that case, a 4.5 should suffice. Others hate to be suffocated, which makes a rating of two ideal for the warmer months.

Top Tip: it’s better to go lower than higher because it’s easier to warm-up than it is to cool down.

Tog ratings for Winter

For those who feel the cold, there’s only one option – a winter duvet tog count of fifteen. Fifteen is the highest tog rating you can get, so you might have to invest in an electric blanket or a hot water bottle if your bedding still doesn’t do the trick!

Alternatively, if you prefer a lighter duvet that will still provide the warmth you need, opt for a duvet with a 13.5 tog rating.

Are there other factors that affect insulation?

Your duvet’s tog rating may explain why you feel hot or cold when you’re asleep. However, the level of togs is by no way the only factor that impacts your comfort. Here is a selection of features to think about as well.

Thread count

Thread and tog count have different meanings, yet they both impact heat retention. This is due to the fact that a high thread count is synonymous with a better quality of the fabric. Egyptian cotton duvet, for instance, typically has more than three-hundred threads per square inch. The additional threads mean that air can’t pass as freely which leads to more thermal efficiency. This is particularly true of Egyptian cotton as it’s a natural fabric with thicker yarns.

Filling

Speaking of material, your duvet’s filling can turn up the heat or let it drop. Again, organic fabrics are much better at trapping heat between their layers. Synthetic materials, on the other hand, are less efficient at retaining warmth, as the heat passes through the thinner fabric more easily.

Cost

Although the price of a duvet doesn’t have a direct impact on its ability to keep your warm, it is true that cheaper materials aren’t as good at trapping heat since the quality is lower. You can tell when you touch a synthetic vs. organic duvet. The former is heavy and bulky, but the latter is light and has a higher tog rating as it requires less material to fill out the bedding.

However, our products are different. At Homefords we specialise in keeping prices low by sourcing materials directly from manufacturers and offering market-leading discounts!

Spouse

No matter how much research you do prior to investing in a duvet, you can’t account for a cover-stealing-spouse or partner! Regardless, you’re bound to be cold if your other half takes the bedding during the night. The good news is that duvets are designed for people who share a bed – the sides have a better tog count as they’re the sections that are used the most.

How do tog ratings in the UK differ?

UK tog ratings are a unit of measurement that you might not find in Europe or the United States. They were created in Manchester as an alternative to the usual form of measurement, the SI unit.

In the US, the RSI, or R-value, is another unit that manufacturers and suppliers use to rate the thermal efficiency of bedding. If you spot these measurements, you need to translate them into tog ratings to obtain a reference point.

However, In the United Kingdom, the Thermal Overall Grade is the standard unit.

Ideal tog ratings for kids

Duvet togs for kids are no different unless otherwise specified. However, you should be aware that children require thinner duvets as they aren’t as equipped at regulating their body temperature as adults. As a result, anything with a tog count of five or more may be too hot for a child.

On average, a rating of 4.5 should be perfect. Of course, it’s vital to consider the conditions of the room too, as your son or daughter might require something more substantial.

Your baby doesn’t need a duvet cover at all. Even if they’re a suitable size for a cot, duvets and pillows are a health hazard for babies under one years old and can lead to suffocation. Instead choose a fitted sheet with a light blanket tucked in below your baby’s shoulder level, or try a baby sleeping bag that prevents them from wriggling down.

Speak to a bedding expert!

As a wholesale supplier of bedding, there’s not much we don;t know about this topic. So, if you have a question about tog ratings that you want answering before you make a purchase, don’t hesitate to contact us! We’ll gladly provide all the information you need to help you choose your ideal product or service with ease.

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