Down vs. Down Alternative: Which is right for you?

Buying a new comforter or pillows can be overwhelming. These are items that you'll use literally every night, so you want to make sure they're the right fit for you.

Arguably the biggest decision: down vs. down alternative. What's the difference and how do I know which one I need? Read on for a primer on down and down alternative featuring our best-selling brand Scandia, which is currently on sale with 20% off.


Known for its plush feel, down provides warmth without weight. This natural fiber provides a sleeping experience unlike any other. People who choose down are looking for a luxurious, high quality fill to elevate their sleeping experience.

The fluffy coating beneath the feathers of waterfowl, down is a natural insulator that contains no prickly quills.

Down is harvested in several ways: by live-plucking, gathering or post-mortem, such as when a bird dies naturally or is used for the meat industry.

Animal lovers will be happy to know that Scandia Down conforms to the Responsible Down Standards or RDS. Scandia fills are never sourced from animals subjected to inhumane harvesting practices. 

Down is long-lasting too. With regular care and laundering, a down pillow or comforter can last five to ten years.

One of our best-selling down collections is Scandia's Copenhagen.

This classic pillow and comforter collection is an excellent introduction to a world of refinement — its 600 fill-power European white down is wrapped in soft cotton cambric ticking. Every pillow is double stitched for durability and comforters are quilted in a baffle box pattern to eliminate cold spots and keep down from shifting. Bonus: every Scandia down product is accompanied by a certificate of authenticity and service for a lifetime!

If you're looking for a few steps up, Scandia's St. Petersburg collection is the ultimate in luxury. 

Crafted from the finest Siberian down and covered in decadent German silk Damask, it is exquisitely sumptuous. With a fill power of 850 – 900 — resulting in supreme fluff and loft—its heirloom-quality comfort is the ultimate refinement for the home.

Down Alternative

If you're dealing with allergies, don't like the idea of down or are just looking for a more economical option, down alternative might be the choice for you.

"Most high quality down-alternative products are filled with a blown poly, giving it the feel of down," says our Assistant Manager, Rilla Travis.

Scandia's Bergen line is down-free, hypoallergenic and made in the US. Its Supra-cluster© microfiber filling has been engineered to deliver all the comfort, loft and luxury one would expect from highest grade natural goose down filling.

While an excellent option for some people, synthetic-filled pillows only have a one-to-two-year life expectancy depending on the type and quality of the fill. Down alternative pillows and comforters can be washed in a washer and dried as well but sometimes come out lumpy and may not hold up the same as a down filled products.

Whether you prefer down or down alternative, you can't go wrong with Scandia products.

"Scandia is a wonderful company and has been around for four decades," Rilla says. "They have the highest quality standards which include a 12-step cleaning process on all their down, which actually allows it to be considered hypoallergenic."

Need more help deciding which comforter and pillows would be best for you? Stop by the store to learn more. Our sleep experts would be happy to help you select the right fill, density and weight for your sleep style.