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How to Choose a Down Comforter You'll Want to Flaunt Every Day

How to Choose a Down Comforter
What is the ultimate form of comfort in this world, you ask? We think alike if you chose 'Bed!'. And if there's anything that will take that cozy experience to the highest order, it would have to be a down comforter.
Arun Prabhu
Last Updated: Apr 9, 2018
"I was saving up for a Camaro. I bought a down comforter instead. I'm so happy!" - Fellow comfort seeker.

"I filed for divorce. My husband hogs the whole down comforter!" - Mrs. Ibought Smallsize.

"My house caught fire. I called 911 and went back to sleep." - Down comforter addict.

The right kind of down comforter is so comfy, you'd swear it was enchanted to put you to sleep the moment you lie down and wrap it around you. And magical it is, indeed! Just looking at it makes you feel warm! I can only say, "Me Gusta la down comforter!" *Snap* Ok, waking up from the trance, a down comforter can be a serious investment, so you need to choose the right one for you. This includes a lot of things, all of which I have mentioned below.
Qualities to Look for in a Down Comforter
The Filling
The type of filling is the most important thing to choose. Get this right and you will be very happy for a long, long time. Most comforters are filled with Goose down feathers, and the type of Goose down feather drastically changes the price tag on the comforter.
White Goose down feathers
'White Goose down feathers' are quite common, they trap a lot of air, providing a good dose of insulation. They are pretty sturdy too, so you don't need to think twice before rolling into them. The thing here is, Geese start off with white and brown feathers, and as they grow older, their feathers turn grayish. You can use this to distinguish the type of down feather and the maturity of the feathers.
Young Goose down feathers
'Young Goose down feathers' are the weakest. Make sure you buy the comforters that have mature Goose down feathers. Down feathers of young Geese are fragile, they deform too soon and don't trap enough air.
'Hungarian Goose down feathers' are an excellent choice. It's logic, Hungary is pretty cold, so the Geese need to make a lot of thick and sturdy feathers to survive. In fact, Hungary is quite the professional comforter producing country. They have been at it for centuries! They do have special farms for raising Geese for their down feathers (Geese here are well taken care of, but know that down feathers are only collected just before the Goose is cooked, literally). If you are looking for country-specific quality, I suggest Hungary over Canada and Canada over Asia. There is this thing called 'fill power' for feathers in a comforter, and good quality white Goose down feathers from Hungary give 750+ (almost 800) fill power. That is the number at the top, if you check the fill powers of all other down feathers. If you check by total sales, most of the world gets their down feathers from China.
Eider down feather
If you are insanely wealthy or are saving up a real big chunk of gold for a down comforter, there is a specifically rare one, filled with Eider down, from Iceland. Now, the wild Eider is strictly off boundaries for game hunters and farmers, so the feather is hand-collected from their nests when they are not around. This makes the feather a very rare find and the comforter very, very, very pricey.
"A cloud of eiderdown
Draws around me
Softening a sound.
Sleepy time, and I lie,
With my love by my side," - Pink Floyd (A Pillow of Winds) :)
'The White Siberian Goose down feathers' are a myth I believe (curse those who spread rumors about down comforters). It went around town, making people believe 'Siberia has a very small amount of Siberian Goose Down feather production. They are best in the world, as Siberia is very cold place.' Well, it is now known that Siberia is in no way, a commercial market for the mythical white Siberian Geese down feathers. If you still doubt this, search for a photo of the Siberian Goose. There is, actually a Goose in Siberia, but it is anything but white. Any other 'white' Geese you'll find there are migratory Geese and you will land up in prison if you touch them. So there.
The Fabric and Thread Count
Cotton fabric for comforter
I'd prefer cotton over linen for the fabric, but you can choose for yourself between them. There will be other synthetic materials used, but if you truly wish to buy a good comforter, stick to cotton or linen. As for the thread count, it's simple, more the thread count, more the smoothness of the fabric surface. A high thread count is highly important for you to get the right feel.
Thickness and its Overall Distribution
Thick down comforter
I have already mentioned the importance of fill power in a down comforter. The range should start at 525 and goes up to 800. The more the fill power, the fluffier the comforter, therefore the happier you are. The other thing is the feather distribution. If the stitching on the inside ain't right, the feathers will shift and spread and eventually clog up at one place. You don't want that to happen. You also need to take care of the clumping when you wash it, and a good stitching should stay intact for that.
Things to Look Out For
The above points will help you choose the right down comforter, and this follow-up makes sure you don't get any problems because of them. These are things you have to know and learn about yourself and the environment before you go and buy it.

The authenticity of the feathers is as important as choosing the right feathers. Know that if the feathers are perfect, they will keep on collecting moisture and dissipating it into the air. This means, if you sweat, the comforter absorbs it and gives it off on the other side, making sure you don't wake up all sweaty and sticky. This is important because a good down comforter keeps you warm no matter what.
Allergy due to old goose feathers
Allergies are another thing you need to do research on. Lots of people are allergic to things on the bird's feathers. Make sure you're not hopelessly allergic and the feathers used are cleaned properly. The thing is, gray feathers mean the Goose was quite old, which means the feathers can be quite harmful. You need to take care of this before you buy one.
✦ The flipside of the above point lies in the chemicals used to wash the down comforter and the feathers. To make the feathers hypoallergenic for you, strong chemicals may be used. These may damage the feathers irreversibly, making them frayed or rigid. Make sure about the method used to clean the feathers and the chemicals used to wash them.
Bird flu is serious cause of worry for us buyers. Now, chickens were the main carriers of the avian flu, but the virus has, indeed spread to other species (more than 100). If the feathers were collected from reliable farms and cleaned properly, then it's fine to buy the comforter. Know more about the company you're buying the comforter from before this.
Brands will do anything to pull you towards them. Whether it's low prices or the 'proof' of the white Siberian Goose, be wary of all the ploys and buy only the one you like the most, after you do research on it, of course.
Follow this guide and be sure of what you buy. Remember, sleep is very important to us, so this is one place where you cannot compromise. Take care of the down comforter once you buy it and please, buy a bigger size for both you and your partner to share (it's alright to hog it once in a while, totally worth it!).