Shopping for a Healthy Dorm Room

Natural & Organic Bedding Resources

Shopping for a college dorm can be an overwhelming experience.  Checklists abound – but what do you really need? Do you have to order bedding from the school for it to fit the bed properly? And how can you be sure that you are making the best and healthiest choices? In this article, we’ll provide healthy choices and help you know what size bedding you actually need.

A Dorm Bed is a Unique Size

First of all, a residence hall room bed is different from a standard twin bed.  To be exact, the dimensions of the bed in your student’s room will probably be 39" x 80", which is 5 inches longer than a regular twin bed. Check your college’s information to be sure. For your fitted sheet (or sheet sets), mattress pad, and mattress topper to cover the entire mattress, you will need the 80" length for proper fit. For a comforter, blanket, or a flat sheet, you can sometimes get by with a regular twin size comforter or blanket. A twin flat sheet is usually sufficient and is often used in a TwinXL sheet set. Check the dimensions on the product to see – and be sure to allow 10-12 inches to tuck a blanket or comforter in if you wish to do that. However, concerning your sheets, it is not true that you need to buy sheets promoted by the college for them to fit correctly. As long as you know the measurements of your dorm mattress and tailor your selections accordingly, your sheets should fit properly.

If you are choosing all-natural or organic fibers for your student’s bedding, read on. We’ve gathered our best picks into one place here to make shopping for healthy and comfortable bedding for your college student easier. Organic and natural bed linens are not only better for the environment because the materials are raised/processed without chemicals, but the fibers are typically more comfortable and breathable than artificial synthetics that do not breathe well. Most of all, you will  know that you are giving your student the healthiest, most comfortable sleeping environment possible.

For your fitted sheet (or sheet sets), mattress pad, and mattress topper to cover the entire mattress, you will need at least the 80" length for a proper fit.

TwinXL sheets to fit the bed – 80″ long

Sheets made without dyes and chemical bleaches are softer and gentler to sensitive skin, which greatly relieves people suffering from eczema. We have the extra-long twin sets that will fit the mattress just right. The sheets listed below are available in that hard-to-find TwinXL size and are chemical-free. Coyuchi Organic Cotton Jersey Sheets Sferra Analisa Percale Sheets

Healthy Mattress Toppers for a layer of comfort

A 2017 study found that 41% of college dorm rooms studied had levels of carcinogens in their dust above health risk screening levels.  One source of these carcinogens in the dust comes from flame retardants. An organic topper can be a good way to provide a clean and natural layer for sleeping. In fact, the Silent Spring Institute recommends using a mattress topper made without chemical flame retardants Our mattress toppers are made with organic and natural materials, always free of toxic flame-retardant chemicals and fabric stain-resistant treatments. Organic or natural wool acts as a natural flame retardant, so no harmful chemicals are needed. Also, an organic or natural mattress topper can act as a barrier between your student and the mattress used in the dorm.  Best of all, they can provide a cushion layer of comfort when laid on top of the dorm room mattress. Then your mattress pad or fitted sheet will go on top of it, holding it securely.   Naturally Organic Hudson Organic Mattress Topper  Holy Lamb Organics Deep Sleep Wool Mattress Topper Obasan Wool Mattress Topper

Mattress Protectors or Pads for a clean foundation

A mattress protector or pad can preserve your mattress topper, protecting it from moisture, spills, and perspiration. Either a protector or a pad will provide a clean foundation for your student’s bedding. A pad will do just what it says – provide padding. Therefore, it is plusher than a protector.  Mattress protectors are usually thinner, yet still provide a layer of protection. A mattress encasement will cover the entire mattress and often zipper shut. They are particularly helpful for someone with allergies. The protectors below will fit a twin XL bed and are natural or organic, free of chemical flame retardants. Sleep and Beyond Organic Cotton Waterproof Mattress Protector Naturally Organic Hudson Organic Cotton Mattress Protector Crescent Moon Dust Mite Mattress Encasement Obasan Nahanni Organic Cotton Mattress Pad

Blankets, Comforters, and Pillows for the right level of cozy

Organic cotton or natural silk blankets or comforters will keep your student warm and cozy without overheating because the fibers breathe. Wool, down, or silk comforters provide a cozy feeling during cooler fall and winter nights. Either Twin or TwinXL comforters can work – check the measurements to be sure.   Brahms Mount Islesboro Cotton and Alpaca Throw (limited number in stock to ship immediately) Throw, not TwinXL size


Sleep and Beyond myComforter Light Please  note: myComforter Light is only 86 inches long Suite Sleep Washable Wool Comforter Mulberry West Silk Comforter The Clean Bedroom Madison Goose Down Comforter


You have many choices when it comes to healthy, chemical-free pillows.  Our resource, A Healthy Pillow, gives details on the various types of pillows available. No special size is needed!

Bringing it Together

We work hard to do the research and be your resource for a wide range of the best brands manufacturing healthy living solutions.  All of these options can combine to make your child’s dorm room a healthful haven for their sleep. And let’s face it — your student needs all the peaceful and healthy rest they can get while in college!


Toxic-Free Future

Ten Tips for a Healthier College Dorm room

Silent Spring Institute:

Detox Your Dorm Room Flame retardants found in dormitory dust 


Record Levels of Toxic Flame Retardants Found in College Dorms