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In this guide
If you get a solid 7 hours of sleep every night, that's over 2,500 hours of sleep every single year. If you're going to spend 2,500 hours doing something, you want to be comfortable doing it. That's where the humble doona comes in. In this guide, we give you the lowdown on how to get an Instagram-worthy bed that feels just as snug as it looks.
The best duvet, doona or quilt is warm, breathable, and above all, cosy as hell. It complements your electric blanket in winter, and keeps you warm (but dry) on cool summer nights. There are all kinds of quilts: vegan, eco-friendly, machine washable, low allergen... While there are many options, the ideal doona should be versatile enough so that you and your co-sleeper are equally snug.
Before we get started, a quick note on terminology. In theory, a quilt is a series of fabric layers stitched together, usually decoratively. A doona or a duvet is a big blanket filled with fibre, down, silk, or wool, and goes inside a duvet or doona cover. But in practice, most Australian stores count doonas, duvets, and quilts as the same thing. We've used the terms here interchangeably, but you can make up your own mind. This is what we found on our quest for the top doona. Or quilt. Or duvet…
How we picked
To decide which was the top doona, quilt, or duvet in Australia, we began with ProductReview.com.au. Usually we would start with Australian and New Zealand consumer advocacy groups, CHOICE or Consumer, but they don't review these products. Doonas are a matter of personal preference, so it was important to us to find out what real Aussies thought.
There were a number of highly-rated duvets on ProductReview.com.au, so we picked those that had the highest ratings (3.7 or over) over the highest number of reviews. This left us with a selection of around 10 quilts. After reading what consumers thought, we culled these back to around 5 doonas. Those that didn't make the cut either had mixed reviews, or didn't offer good value for money.
While the 5 we had were top-notch duvets, we felt that there should also be a silk or bamboo option on the list for those who like a thinner quilt. Heading back to ProductReview.com.au, we found two with 5-star reviews, and checked product websites to make an informed decision. One quilt impressed us more than the other. Returning to the list, we felt that we needed a final puzzle piece: a budget pick.
When you want a good quality product that has been well-designed, there's only one place to look: IKEA. IKEA products often fly below the ProductReview.com.au radar, so we checked their duvets to see if any stood out. One product had an impressive 4.5 stars over 40 reviews. We know that reviews on a product's website can be skewed, but the quilt that came on top is one we already own. Having done our own independent testing, we decided it was a fair pick.
Related: The best mattresses
Features to consider
You'd be mistaken if you thought all quilts were created equal. Here are some considerations that stood out across our research.
If you live in one of Brisbane's leafy suburbs, but your parents live on a farm in the depths of South Australia, you'll probably want different quilts.
Wake up sniffling every morning? Dust mites could be to blame. Allergy-sufferers have two options: pick a synthetic quilt you can machine wash at 60 degrees, or a wool quilt with antibacterial properties.
When you and your co-sleeper have different temperature preferences, it's worth buying a doona together so you don't get an earful when they wake up sweating or shivering.
Some of us are more accident-prone than others. Not all duvets are designed to handle spills or accidents, so it's important to check how easy your doona is to wash.
The cheapest quilt on our list is 14 times less expensive than the priciest, but you're unlikely to get a natural fibre quilt for under $200.
Many quilts contain animal products, and some are produced more sustainably than others. Buying an Australian-made quilt likely means a lower carbon footprint, but it probably won't be vegan.
Quilt, doona or duvet
The Australian market doesn't observe the differences between quilts and doonas. This becomes tricky when shopping for a 'true' continental quilt, as labeling is inconsistent. All products on our list could go inside a duvet cover, but if you just need a quilt as an added layer, you'll get away with a less heavy-duty option.
Related: The Best Electric Blanket
What you get if you spend more
Most of our picks were priced between $300 and $400, but there were higher-end options out there. This is what you can look forward to if you're prepared to splash the cash.
Type of filling
Wool duvets cost more than synthetic fiber doonas, but goose down and duck down doonas are the most expensive, hands-down.
The pricier products on our list generally had covers with high thread counts. This doesn't matter much if you're going to put a doona cover over it anyway.
The duvet market is flush with quality products and posh brands. It may not be worth spending more than $500 unless you're looking for exclusive bragging rights in the leafy suburbs.
Related: The Best Sheets
Or how to get up on the right side of the bed every morning.