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What is a Bed Skirt?

What is a Bed Skirt?

Bedding Resources
Read Time: 6 minutes
  • Bed skirts provide both decorative and practical benefits, including preventing dust accumulation under the bed and concealing storage items, offering a cleaner and organized bedroom environment.
  • Different types of bed skirts, such as traditional, split corner, wrap around, and detachable, cater to various preferences and bed types, with certain styles being more suitable for adjustable beds due to their flexibility and easy setup.
  • When choosing a bed skirt, consider the fabric type, including options like cotton, linen, polyester, and taffeta, each offering distinct characteristics such as durability, affordability, and luxurious aesthetics, ensuring a cohesive and stylish look for your bedroom.

Bed skirts are not a necessity for your bedroom, but they may come in handy. A lot of sleepers look at bed skirts as a decorative bedroom item. Though they do add to the aesthetic of your bedroom, they also prevent dust from accumulating under your bed.

Bed skirts are also great for hiding the bulky look of your box spring or foundation. Not to mention they can hide the storage items underneath your bed, keeping your bedroom clean and organized.

In the next section, we’ll take a look at the different types of bed skirts and which one you should choose for your bedroom.

Types of Bed Skirts

All bed skirts have the same functionality as an item of bedding, but there are different styles that may be more compatible with the look of your bedroom. In this next section, we’ll look at traditional-styled bed skirts and a few alternatives.


Traditional bed skirts are the most commonly used by sleepers. These skirts lie between your mattress and your box spring or foundation. So, in order to place them on your foundation, you’ll have to lift your bed. Once you remove your bed from its foundation, place the flat part of your bed skirt on the top of your foundation. Try to get it as flat as possible to keep it from sliding when you put your mattress on top.

The ruffled or fabric portion of your bed skirt should hang over the sides of your box spring or foundation, and should cover the frame. This is how you’ll know if you placed it on your bed correctly.

Traditional bed skirts don’t have slits at the corners and they can look bunched up or crinkled around the corners of certain bed frames. This is especially true if your bed skirt is uneven on a certain side of your bed.

If the sides are uneven, you’ll probably want to start over, so the fabric drapes effortlessly. Traditional bed frames are compatible with most bases. However, they are not the best for adjustable beds since they can shift or slide when you reposition your bed.

Split Corner

Split bed skirts are similar to traditional ones, but they have slits at each of their corners. This keeps the skirt from bunching up at the edges of your bed. Like the traditional bed skirt, you’ll need to place them between the mattress and the base of your bed.

The tricky thing about split corners is that they can get caught in the gap of your mattress if the base moves upward. For this reason, you should avoid using them with adjustable bases as well.

Wrap Around

Wrap around bed skirts do exactly what their name suggests. These skirts come with a stretchy elastic band that you can secure either at the bottom of the mattress or the top of the foundation. Then you simply wrap it around the outside of your bed. The great thing about these skirts is that they let you secure the bed skirt without moving your mattress.

Unlike the previous two types, wraparound-style bed skirts can be used with adjustable beds. If you’re looking for a bed skirt to act as a dust catcher with a mattress for allergies, a wraparound-style skirt can minimize the hassle of setup and make it easier to wash it frewuently.


Detachable bed skirts are another wrap around bed skirt. These bed skirts will have hook and loop systems or velcro that attach to the foundation. You’ll probably want to work with a buddy to attach a wrap around bed skirt. This way, you can make sure all sides are evenly draped. This is yet another bed skirt to use with an adjustable bed.

Bed Skirt Fabrics

All bed skirts are not the same. There are actually a few styles and materials you can buy to match your bedroom aesthetic. Let’s take a look.


Cotton is an excellent bed skirt material. Not only is it machine washable and low maintenance, but it’s also very durable. You’ll be able to find cotton bed skirts for a budget friendly price, without worrying about cheap or damage.


Linen is made from very fine fibers derived from the flax plant. It is heavier than cotton and is also very durable. Linen may be a better option for sleepers who want a sleeker look. Its heavy weight also keeps it from moving freely, which some sleepers will appreciate.


Polyester is a low-cost synthetic fabric. Polyester isn’t as heavy as linen, and it’s also not as durable as cotton. However, it is very affordable. So, you’ll be able to give your bedroom a new chic look without overextending your budget.


For sleepers who want a more luxurious look, you should consider purchasing a taffeta bed skirt. Taffeta has a silk texture that will complement your bed nicely if you have bedroom decor that matches this aesthetic. You’ll more than likely have to shell out more money for these bed skirts, but they may be a better investment in the long run compared to cheaper materials.

How to Put on a Bed Skirt?

Placing your skirt on your bed should be fairly simple. If you are using a traditional or split corner bed skirt, you’ll need to remove your mattress from your frame. Then, place your bed skirt on the foundation.

If you’re struggling to move your mattress or putting on your bed skirt, you might want to employ the help of a friend or loved one. This will make it a lot easier to get your skirt on, and you’ll have a better chance of putting it on evenly.

Wrap around and detachable bed skirts will be easy to attach as well. Just follow the instructions that come with your item and attach the loops or velcro to your bed frame. Then, simply wrap your bed skirt around it.

No matter what type of bed skirt you use you’ll want to make sure of all sides of the skirt or even. This will ensure your bed has an organized sleek you.


Can a bed skirt help with my allergies?

Using a bed skirt is a great way to keep dust and dirt from accumulating under your bed. This is actually the reason many people buy them. With less dirt and debris under your bed, you may experience a bit of relief, especially if you are someone with a dust allergy.

What is the point of a bed skirt?

As we mentioned above, bed skirts are not just nice bedroom decor. Their sole function is to keep dirt and dust from gathering underneath your bed. They are also a great way to keep your bedroom aesthetic looking organized since they cover the sides of your bed. This can come in handy if you have bulky items under your bed or want to hide your bed frame.

Does a bed skirt go under the mattress?

If you are using a traditional bed skirt, you will have to place it under your mattress. There are other types of bed skirts like detachable items that do not require you to move your mattress. Usually, these come with a velcro or loop system that attaches to the box spring or frame. This way, you can connect your skirt to your frame without lifting your bed.

Do I need a bed skirt if I have a bed frame?

Purchasing a bed skirt is not a necessity and will only depend on your personal preferences, much like the question of needing a headboard. Most people who buy bed skirts like them because they cover storage items under your bed. They can also be a good way to prevent dust mites from clumping under your bed.

Some sleepers may also prefer a fun stylish bedroom, and purchasing a bed skirt can be a great way to add a pop of color to your room to complete the overall look. However, if you are a sleeper who does not want a decorative room, you can opt out of purchasing this item.

What’s the difference between a bed skirt and a dust ruffle?

Dust ruffle is just another name for a bed skirt. There are a couple of other names you may hear in place of “bed skirts,” including a pettiskirt, a bed ruffle, a valance, or even a valance sheet. So just remember there is no difference.

How often should I wash my bed skirt?

You will not need to wash your bed skirt as frequently as you wash a comforter and sheets. Ideally, you should wash your bed skirt whenever you notice a stain on it. But if you are someone with allergies, you may want to wash your bed skirt once a month.

Washing your bed skirt every month will keep dust from accumulating in your bedroom, and you can do so as part of your mattress cleaning routine. While you’re washing your bed skirt, be sure to carefully follow instructions before you place it in the washer. It is usually a good idea to wash your bed skirt gently to lessen the risk of your fabric fraying.


As we mentioned above, bed skirts are not a requirement for your bedding. But we’ll add that they are pretty affordable and can really dress up even the best mattress and complete the overall look of your bedroom.

They also prevent dust and dirt from clumping under your bed, keeping your room nice and clean. Plus, they can be a great remedy if you are someone who suffers from allergies that stem from dust. A bed skirt can work with any type of mattress and numerous bed frames, particularly if you choose one of the wraparound or detachable skirts.

Harrison Wall is Sleep Junkie’s business strategist and sleep analyst. He also authors posts on bedding and mattress accessories. Harrison regularly coordinates with new mattress companies and tests their products to determine what really helps you get better rest and have brighter mornings.

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