Written By
Published Jul. 8, 2021

First things first: You may be wondering what exactly constitutes a throw blanket. While there are no specific measurements—no National League of Throw Blanket Artisans who dispense fabric weight, size, and material requirements—everybody’s pretty much in agreement that it is what it sounds like. A throw blanket is something you throw on yourself when you’re, say, lounging on the couch or taking a nap and not what you burrow into and cover yourself with when you tuck in at night for six to nine hours. (Those other things are comforters, quilt blankets, duvets—basically everything but throws.) Throws are often 50 inches by 60 inches, but they certainly don’t have to be, and when it comes to style, they’re all over the map. Does your mom have a cashmere square in a tartan print with fringe folded over her easy chair? That’s a throw. Your boho bestie keeps a nubby fleece rectangle on her couch and cocoons into it while she’s watching TV? Also a throw. Fluffy blankets, comfy blankets, super-soft blankets—all potentially throws! What’s important isn’t so much what it’s called like the fact that there is a best throw blanket that suits your warmth needs and style preferences. 

The most important features to consider when buying a throw blanket

Linus was onto something. There’s just something comforting about a soft blankie. But what makes one better than another—never mind the best throw blanket—is subjective. The key is to figure out what “comfort” means to you. 

Do you want a heated throw blanket?

If you are the person wearing two sweatshirts and socks while everyone else in the room is sweating, consider a heated throw blanket. The best part about it is that you can use the heat option when you want to—or not. So, maybe in winter, you wrap that baby around you as if you were a toasty pig in a blanket, while in summer you forgo the heat option and just enjoy the natural warmth of the material itself.

Are you interested in a weighted throw blanket? 

If you’ve ever had X-rays done at the dentist and felt an extra sense of relaxation when the hygienist put the leaded apron on your body, you may want to consider a weighted blanket. Though it’s unclear whether the effects of a weighted blanket are psychological or physiological, it hardly matters if you happen to be one of the many people who find the application of weight to be sleep-inducing and anxiety-abating. (Think of the way swaddling calms a newborn. It’s like that.) Weighted blankets, also called gravity blankets, get their heft from plastic- or glass-bead filling. They’ve long been used by practitioners in the neurodivergent community to help restore a sense of calm in children with sensory-overload issues. They can reportedly also help promote better sleep. However, if you have any respiratory or circulatory issues—or you just want to double-check that a weighted blanket is the right choice for you—always ask your doctor first.

Are you a fancypants when it comes to fabric?

This one seems like a no-brainer but bears repeating: If you don’t like synthetic fabrics in your clothing, you won’t like them in your throw blankets. The reverse is also true: If you wear only vegan materials, there’s a throw out there for you too, with no animal products involved. Cashmere throws are the gold standard when it comes to draping yourself in luxury, and options abound in this soft wool. They’ll cost you a little more, of course, but there are many good choices out there that won’t break the bank. If you’re interested in spending nearly two grand on a blankie, there are options for you too.

The best throw blankets:

A comfy blanket is just what you need at the end (or beginning…or middle) of a long, stressful day or just anytime you want to be wrapped in the fabric equivalent of a hug. Here are some of the best…

Best heated throw blanket: Electric Blanket Heated Throw Flannel 

Electric Blanket Heated Throw Flannel

This cotton-rayon blend throw also features foot pockets (so your toes stay toasty).
Zircon

Check Price

Think of this as a combo heating pad and throw blanket. An unexpected perk of using a heated blanket? You may lower your electric bill. If you can keep yourself warm under a blankie, you may not need to crank up the heat in your home quite so much. This throw measures 50 inches by 60 inches and features a four-hour automatic shutoff, a 6-foot power cord, and a 3-foot controller cord with remote control, so you won’t get tangled or toasted as you doze. Specs-wise, it’s 110V–120V at 60Hz, and the best part is that it’s machine-washable.

Best faux fur throw blanket: Everlasting Comfort Luxury Faux Fur Throw Blanket

Everlasting Comfort Luxury Faux Fur Throw Blanket

This double-sided, 100-percent polyester, faux fur throw has all the sweet comfort of the real thing with none of the cruelty. Everlasting Comfort

Check Price

Thick, long, durable fabric in multiple colors is both pretty and cozy, and hidden stitching makes it nice and tidy. This throw is washer- and tumble-dry-safe, so you can keep it fresh as a daisy. Note that some colors (teal, navy, ivory) are the same on both sides, while others (arctic blue and chocolate) are a solid hue on one side, animal print on the other.

Best weighted throw blanket: Sivio Luxury Shaggy Longfur Weighted Blanket 

Sivio Luxury Shaggy Longfur Weighted Blanket

Dual-sided, fluffy faux-fur sherpa material gives the feeling of being wrapped in a cloud.
Sivio

Check Price

The rule of thumb for buying the correct weight blanket for you is to use one that weighs about 10 percent of your body weight. This one comes in two weights—15 pounds and 20 pounds—and you should size up if you’re between weights. (Side note: Kids’ blankets come in lighter varieties, like 5 pounds.) The field is admittedly narrow when it comes to inclusiveness, so if you fall into a heavier spectrum, consider layering more than one blanket to get to your optimal weight. (Not ideal, we know.) This weighted throw blanket is filled with hypoallergenic ceramic beads. They’re sealed in with polyester padding to prevent leaking and rustling—and to promote a sense of calm.

Best cashmere throw blanket: Extra Soft Cashmere Wool Throw Blanket 

Extra Soft Cashmere Wool Throw Blanket

This ultra-thin cashmere throw blanket is made of fine, dry-clean-only handwoven herringbone cashmere from Nepal.
Bodhiartistry

Check Price

This lavish but lightweight wool throw blanket is large—measuring a whopping 108 inches by 54 inches—but also thin. Because cashmere is a natural material, it’s prone to pilling and absolutely cannot be hand- or machine-washed—so, factor in extra costs for dry-cleaning. Using a garment bristle brush will prevent unsightly snags, but this throw is definitely best for people who are gentle with their things and/or don’t mind the occasional pill sighting. 

Best cheap throw blanket: Bedsure Fleece Blanket Throw

Bedsure Fleece Blanket Throw

The standard-size model of this microfiber bargain buy is less than $15, but it comes in a range of colors and sizes, all the way up to 108 inches by 90 inches.
Bedsure

Check Price

Fade-resistant, machine-washable, inexpensive—this is the throw for anyone who is spill-prone or has kids. Stitched flannel-fleece also makes it hardy enough to stand up to pets who might claim these soft spots as their own. And at such a low price point, you might consider buying a bunch. 

FAQs

Q:

What is the best material for a throw blanket? 

“Best” is entirely subjective, and the answer depends on your needs and lifestyle. If you have active kids or pets, or you’re just not particularly precious with your belongings, pick a hardy microfiber that can take a licking. If you’re more about the aesthetics and or like to wrap yourself in a pretty throw and sit as still as a mummy or instantly fall asleep, consider upgrading from a basic wool throw blanket to something like cashmere, which is regal but also delicate. One undeniably premium pick, however, is a stylish Brooklinen throw blanket, available in a variety of eco-friendly materials (baby alpaca, wool, lambswool, cashmere, and lambswool) that will keep you warm by the fire or when you’re basking in the warm glow of Netflix.

Q:

What is the difference between a throw and a blanket? 

The difference between a throw and a blanket is in the eye of the beholder! All throws are blankets, but not all blankets are throws—did that clear things up? Here’s the easiest way to tell the difference: If the item of which you speak is something that spends most of its day atop your bed, covers the entire bed, and you climb under it at night, it’s probably a blanket (or a comforter or a duvet). If it’s the kind of thing you fold up and place over a chair or couch for decoration when it’s not in use and then casually drape over yourself when you are settling in for a night of TV bingeing, it’s more likely a throw. The good news? It doesn’t really matter what you call them as long as you pick one you like. 

Q:

How many blankets should you sleep with? 

A better question: How many blankets do you want to sleep with? If you like the feel of a weighted blanket but either don’t want to invest in one or can’t find an option that’s the proper weight, consider layering multiple blankets to mimic the feeling of having calming weight on top of you. Otherwise, even if you’re a cold sleeper, one blanket—depending of course on other factors, like how cool or drafty your home is—should suffice. Once you get settled, the blanket will trap hot air underneath and warm you up. Ever notice how sometimes when you get into bed it’s frigid, and then only a few minutes later you’re just right? Or the opposite: You feel great when you climb under the blankets, then suddenly you’re sweating? It’s a Goldilocks proposition: Trial and error is the only way to figure out how many blankets are the right number for you and your best night’s sleep. 

The final word on choosing the best throw blanket 

Throw blankets are like pizza: Even if they’re cheap, they’re still pretty good. The great news for you is that we’ve handpicked the best throw blankets around, whether that means it has a heating option, weighted beads, or is simply a cozy style that won’t break the bank. 

MORE TO READ