How to keep fitted sheets tight in 11 simple steps

Knowing how to keep bed sheets tight is an underrated problem that we all go through at some time, so I’m here to give you some top tips on keeping your fitted sheets in place.

If you are experiencing numerous nights of frustration, twisting, turning, and grappling with fitted sheets that won’t stay on the bed and are looking for help, then our ultimate guide to keeping fitted sheets tight is perfect for you.

Everybody loves a clean, comforting bed with fresh bedding, but one of the worst things about changing the sheets is spending all that time making the bed. Then, ten minutes later, the fitted sheet springs off, and you have to start again. It’s such a pain. There’s nothing worse than a poorly fitting sheet. It either comes off at one corner, both corners, or the top and bottom, leaving you in dismay.

How often have you tried to stretch your sheet over your mattress, and you know that it will spring off as soon as you get back into bed? There’s nothing more frustrating.

I don’t know about you, but I cannot sleep in a messy bed. I often get up in the middle of the night trying to stretch the sheet back over my side of the bed as my partner sleeps soundly next to me, so it ends up being virtually impossible.

A recent study shows that just one hour of lost sleep can result in a 25% decrease in daytime alertness. So, I’m here to give you some top tips on how to keep your fitted sheets in place.

fluffy dog on clean sheets

My kids can’t keep their sheets on their bed, and every day, I seem to be putting the bottom sheet back on. Even fitted sheets can be so badly fitting that they barely stay on the bed. This is utterly time-consuming and very annoying. In this post, I will share some tips on keeping a fitted sheet tight so you no longer have to grapple when making the beds!

Why do fitted sheets keep popping off?

There may be many reasons that your fitted sheet won’t stay on the bed:

  • The sheet is too deep for the bed. The elastic isn’t gripping because the sheet isn’t tight enough. Therefore, when you move around, it just slips straight off the bed.
  • The sheet is too small for the bed. The elastic cannot hold and keep the sheet in place because the sheet is too small for the bed.
  • The mattress is too deep for the sheet. The sheet keeps popping off the mattress as it cannot grip or stay in place. If you feel this is happening to you, you can purchase deeper sheets for your bed to match your mattress depth. See our guide below for getting the correct sheet depth for your mattress.
  • IKEA mattress sizes. Sometimes, if you have purchased your mattress from IKEA but have purchased your sheet from somewhere else, you will probably find that they are different sizes. If your mattress is from IKEA, make sure you are buying your sheets and duvets from there, too, as this will ensure that you get the correct size bedding for your bed. See below for a UK bedding size guide to help you choose the proper size sheets.
  • Slippery fabric. Another reason you struggle to keep your fitted sheets tight may be the material from which they are made. There are multiple slippery fabrics, such as satin, silk, and bamboo to avoid when buying sheets, as they are notoriously difficult to keep on the bed. No matter how much you try to keep them from slipping, they will. If you’re shopping for new sheets that are non-slip. The best-fitted sheets that stay tight are made from Linen, Cotton, or Flannel. These are much easier to keep in place as they have slightly more friction. If you cannot do without your silk sheets, try using an elastic sheet holder like this one to keep them in place.
  • It might be your mattress. Different types of mattresses may be the problem. A memory foam mattress and mattress toppers explain why you cannot keep your bedsheets on. Specific surfaces of a bed, like Latex, make it highly slippery, so it does not have enough friction to keep the sheet on the bed. Memory foam mattresses hold a lot of heat at night, which can cause the bed sheet to come off the bed.

UK bed sizes

To ensure you get the correct size and depth of bed sheet for your mattress, check out this handy guide below.

UK Single Bed.

A UK single bed measures 3ft wide and 6ft 3 inches in length. This equates to 90cm x 190cm.

This is also the size of a standard UK bunk bed.

UK Double Bed.

A UK double bed measures 4ft 6 inches wide and 6ft 3 inches long. This equates to 135cm x 190cm. When used to have a double bed, I bought king-size duvets to stop my partner from hogging the duvet at night. I also think it looks better when you make the bed. To find out how to make the perfect bed read this post.

UK King Size Bed

A UK king-size bed measures 5ft wide and 6ft 6 inches long. This equates to 150cm x 200cm. A king-size bed is excellent for people who snore, so you have a lot more space and, of course, taller people amongst us.

UK Super King-Size bed

A UK super king-sized bed measures 6ft wide and 6ft 6 inches in length that is 180cm x 200cm. I wish I had space for a super king-sized bed. Imagine having all that space to spread out like a starfish!

For US bed sizes, please see below.

Fitted sheet depth sizes

The next thing you need to consider is the depth of your mattress. This is a no-brainer when it comes to picking a fitted sheet. If your mattress is too deep for your fitted sheet, you will find it will keep pinging off. You will find that memory foam mattresses and cooling mattresses are often deeper than standard beds.

Fitted sheets come in three different depth sizes:

Standard covers a depth of 7 to 14 inches.

Deep which is anything over 14 inches and covers 11 to 17 inches depth.

Extra deep, which is anything over 15 inches and covers a depth between 15 and 22 inches

This guide should help you choose the right fitted sheet size for the depth of your mattress. The best way to find out the depth of your mattress is to get your tape measure out and measure the corner of your mattress from top to bottom, then choose the fitted sheet that is the best fit. If you have a mattress topper on, it’s important to consider this when measuring.

How to keep fitted sheets tight

  1. Try putting on the top corners first. We often move around at night, and most of the movement is at the top of the bed. Putting the top corners on first and tucking them right beneath the mattress makes sense. Once they’re on tight, you can secure the bottom corners and hope they stay put.
  2. Safety pins. You can attach safety pins to the corners of your fitted sheet to make them tighter. Gather the corners together and pin them to make your fitted sheet smaller. This method is perfect for when your bedsheets are bigger than your bed. The only problem with this method is that you must be careful not to pin them too tight and leave some slack because as you move around on the bed, you may rip the bed sheets if you fasten them too tightly.
  3. Sheet suspenders There are many variants of sheet suspenders. You can get them like these, which attach to all sides of your bed. You can attach them to the box springs or your bed slats for extra tightness.
  4. Velcro. Using Velcro is another DIY tip for how to keep fitted sheets in place. You can hot glue some Velcro to the corner of your fitted sheet and the four corners of your bed to stick the sheets to your mattress. This should help keep the sheets securely in place; however, I’m not sure how well this would work with my very wriggly 10-year-old boy.
  5. The Bed Scrunchy. The Bed Scrunchy is a scrunchy type gadget like this one that fits any bed. You don’t have to lift the mattress. It clips around the edges of your sheet. Once the sheets are on the bed, you pull a cord to tighten it. Initially, it’s a bit of a hassle, but once it’s on, you don’t have to think about it again. You can throw it in the machine and dry it at low, medium, or high speeds, and you don’t need to keep reattaching it every time you make the bed. This bed scrunchie transforms a flat sheet into a perfectly tailored fitted sheet and works perfectly for flat or top sheets.
  6. Elastic. If you feel like crafting to help keep your fitted sheets tight, sew a length of elastic across the corners to make them tighter. Like the safety pin method, you can gather the corners together and sew roughly about an 18-inch strip of elastic from corner to corner of your fitted sheet. This is a great way to tighten your fitted sheets, but if you’re like me and can’t be bothered sewing, you might prefer to choose one of the other methods!
  7. Fitted sheet clips. You can get some elastic clips like these or adjustable sheet straps like these, that look similar to braces. You attach each side of each clip to the four corners of your fitted sheet, and you can adjust the tightness depending on how tight or loose you want your fitted sheets. This stretches the sheet over the bed and makes it taught. I like this method as it keeps the sheets in place. Even on the kid’s beds, it makes the bed neat. It’s easy to apply. And it isn’t too much hassle. You open the clips, put the bed sheet into the clips, and press the clip into the sheet. The corner sheet holders are compatible with all sizes, from small to king. The clips are Excellent for Futons, split mattress beds, air mattresses, foam mattresses, and pillow-top mattresses, and they can be used on tablecloth covers.
  8. Non-slip rug corners. You can purchase non-slip rug corners like these at any hardware store. You can attach them to your mattress to stop your sheets from slipping and sliding around on the bed.
  9. Better Bedder. The Better Bedder is like a gigantic headband holding your fitted and flat sheets in place. You put it on your bed once, then regard it as a part of your mattress. The Better Bedder lets you tuck your top sheet into it, so it’s almost like tucking your shirt into your pants. This will help secure a poorly fitting sheet. The Better Bedder functions better with flat sheets than fitted sheets.
  10. Use two fitted sheets. Using an upside-down fitted sheet is similar to the Better Bedder method in that you put the larger, deepest sheet onto your mattress, flip it over, put the second sheet on the other side of the mattress, and tuck it into the first sheet. Using two fitted sheets is a simple but effective method if you wonder how to tighten bed sheets without spending money. Again, it’s like tucking your T-shirt into your trousers.
  11. Bed Hugger. When you use a Bed Hugger elastic band like this one, your flat sheet and bedding tuck between the band and the mattress to keep them secured. Depending on your mattress type and your sleeping patterns, you may want to adjust the band’s size to create more horizontal tension on the sides. The Bed Hugger takes roughly two minutes to install and can be accomplished with one person, but it is more manageable with two people. The band’s tension is secure and effective if you follow the instructions. Used daily, it will not come off the mattress while you sleep. After the Bed Hugger band is put on, you will never have to remove it, even when changing your bedding.

How to keep fitted sheets tight on adjustable beds

An adjustable bed is an ergonomic bed designed to lift, adjust and elevate, help support the neck, and allow better mobility for people with back issues. The only problem with an adjustable bed is that it’s almost impossible to keep the sheets on because every time the bed elevates, the sheets just pop off.

To keep sheets on an elevated bed, keep sheet fasteners like these underneath the mattress to hold the sheets onto all four sides of the bed. You can also adjust them for extra tension so they won’t slip off when you adjust the bed.

USA bed sizes

What sizes are the beds in America?

Bed sizes are slightly different in the US than in the UK, so the equivalent US  bed sizes are here.
Twin (UK single) 3 ft 3 inches wide X 6 ft 3 inches long
Twin XL 3 ft 3 inches X 6 ft 8 inches long
Small double three-quarter size 4 ft wide X 6 ft 3 inches long
Full  (UK double) 4 ft 6 inches wide X 6 ft 3 inches long
Queen (UK King) 5 ft wide X 6 ft 8 inches long
King 6 ft 4 inches wide X 6 ft 8 inches long
California king (UK super king) 6 ft wide X 7 ft long

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