You will see thread count referred to with a number followed by tc, which stands for thread count, such as 200tc. Thread Count refers to the number of horizontal and vertical threads in one square inch of fabric. So if a fabric is 200tc or 200 thread count, that means there were 200 threads per one square inch of fabric.
Thread count in bed sheets can range from 60 to 800. The most often purchased sheets are sheets that range from 180 to 350 thread count. Basically, the higher the thread count, the softer the sheets feel. Keep in mind, the higher the thread count, the more expensive the sheets are as well.
However, higher thread count does not necessarily mean the sheets will last longer. In fact, thread counts above 380 are kind of deceving. Many manufacturers twist two threads in a way that lets them double the sheets thread count. That does not make them last longer though.
Although many linen manufacturers say thread count is the best way to choose sheets, others point out that the quality of the fibers and finish are more important to the sheets comforter and durablility. In fact, sheets made of linen, flannel, or jersey (those t shirt sheets) have low thread counts due to the type of fabric. A high thread count would eliminate part of the appeal of these sheets.
According to Consumer Reports Magazine, cotton and cotton blend sheets with a thread count of 180 to 200 stand up to wear and tear the best and provide satisfactory comfort. It has been my personal experience that 200 to 350 thread count feels the best and lasts the longest. Sheets under 180 thread count tend to pile with wear and become scratchy to the skin.
So in the end it comes down to what feels good to yiou, and what is in your price range. If you buy sheets in the 200-250 thread count range, you will get the most life out of them, and they are comfortable. You will find may sheet sets listed in our ebay store, Today's Bedding.