Best Time to Buy

The Best Time to Buy Bedding and Linens

Bedding and linen "white sales" have been held by department stores every January since 1878.

An artistic illustration of a house filled with products with bedding and linens highlighted

The best times to buy bedding and linens are Amazon Prime Day, Black Friday, Black Friday Weekend, back to school season, and all of January.

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Bedding and Linens are rarely on sale—about 18% of the year, or an average of 1-in-5.5 days.

rarely on sale
18%
of year on sale
5
sale periods
66
sale days
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The best months to buy bedding and linens are January, July, August, September, November, and December.

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Best time to buy bedding and linens
Victoria Pena's Profile Picture
Victoria Pena
BTTB Researcher
3 min. read

Along with mattresses, nice bedding and linens go a long way towards making a bedroom feel more put together and improving sleep. They can also be profoundly expensive, leading many people to try to hold out for sales and promotions to make their purchases.

If you’re wondering when you should buy bedding and linens this year (and every year), here are the three months to consider for the biggest discounts.

January: White Sale

January is almost always going to be the prime time to buy bedding and linens. Most bedding and linen retailers hold what’s called a “White Sale” each January to sell their products at a steep discount. According to CBS News, consumers can expect to save up to 80% this time of year.

The Origin of the “White Sale”

The concept of a White Sale actually began with a man named John Wanamaker[1] (who also invented the price tag—yes, really!) Wanamaker opened a store called Oak Hall for men’s clothing, which was possibly the earliest example of what we know today as a department store. His advertising tactics featured a “White Sale” every January beginning in 1878, so named because linens at the time only came in white.

John Wannamaker's original department store

The concept lived on, and most of today’s department stores and linen brands will offer their own discounts in January. Whether they still use the name of a “White Sale” or not, the concept stuck.

Are White Sale items discounted in February?

Not necessarily—some people argue that February is actually the best time to buy linens, because the leftover inventory after the White Sale might be even more steeply discounted. Given the low supply left at that time and limited number of choices in terms of fabric and color, we’d still recommend making your purchases in January so you don’t miss out.

March: Sleep Awareness Week

“There’s a day for that” isn’t just a saying, it’s also the easiest way for retailers to cater their sales and add more target sales throughout the year. Although not a mainstream holiday, Sleep Awareness Week, which runs from March 13-19, offers another opportunity to buy new bedding.

August: Back to School

After March, August is another great time to buy your bedding and linens—unless you prefer especially high-quality material.

Why? August is when the college crowd goes back to school, so most inexpensive and modest bedding options are discounted to attract students before they move into dorms and apartments. Some of these same discounts will apply to the more high-end pieces at stores like Target or Bed Bath & Beyond, but you’re not quite as likely to see discounts at specialty stores or high-end retailers.

Still, keep an eye out for discounts around the August/September time if you’re hoping to score on bedding.

November: Black Friday/Cyber Monday

Last but not least, bedding and linens are often included in Black Friday and Cyber Monday sales alongside countless other discounts. You may again have the best luck at big box stores, but don’t be surprised if the high-end retailers give discounts around this time as well.

If you’re desperate for new bedding by the time November rolls around, it makes sense to take advantage of these sales. Otherwise, you’re likely to capture the deepest discounts if you wait until January’s White Sales. In 2020, many Black Friday linen sales fell around the 20-25% discount mark, which doesn’t compare to the 80% that you can reach during White Sales.

FAQ

Let's recap by answering some key questions:

When is the best time to buy bedding and linens?

The best times to buy bedding and linens are Amazon Prime Day, Black Friday, Black Friday Weekend, back to school season, and all of January.

How often are bedding and linens on sale?

Bedding and linens are rarely on sale, approximately 66 days each year, spanning 5 distinct sale periods—that's 18% of the year.

What are the best months to buy bedding and linens?

The best months to buy bedding and linens are January, July, August, September, November, and December.

What's the best place to buy bedding and linens?

The best places to buy bedding and linens are Amazon, Kohl's, Macy's, Target, and West Elm.

  1. "“Who Made America” Series" (PBS)
  2. "Making The Most Of White Sales" (CBS News)
  3. "January is the best time to buy bedding on sale—here's all the best sales happening now" (USA Today)

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