Pima vs Supima - A Detailed Comparison

Searching for the best cotton sheets can be fun and frustrating at the same time. You may be faced with a few unfamiliar terms that can make the decision-making process even more confusing. Getting to know some of the most common terms associated with cotton or cotton beddings can take the frustration out of the process and make your shopping a more enjoyable task.

Pima vs Supima - A Detailed Comparison

Pima and Supima may likely be two of the most common terms you will encounter when searching for the best cotton beddings to grace your bedroom. While they may seem interchangeable, these two terms have key differentiators, and knowing them can help you decide which one will best suit your needs. Pima and Supima are both types of extra-long-staple cotton, but Supima refers to a type of Pima cotton that has gone through strict quality and standard testing to guarantee staple durability and length. To put it simply, Supima is a superior type of Pima cotton. All of the Supima cotton you will encounter is a type of Pima cotton, but not all Pima is Supima cotton.

Pima Cotton

Pima vs Supima - A Detailed Comparison

Pima cotton is a type of cotton that is primarily grown in Peru, certain regions in the United States, and Australia. It has extra-long-staple cotton fibers that are roughly 50% longer than the ones seen in regular cotton types. This length results in fabric that is softer, stronger, and more durable than the ones made using a lower quality of cotton with shorter fibers. Normal cotton fibers often come with a length of 1.1 inches, while the fibers of Pima cotton can be 1.4 to 2 inches long. The price of Pima cotton is higher compared to that of regular cotton. To keep the cost down, some manufacturers combine Pima cotton with other types of materials to produce a more affordable fabric type.

Benefits of Pima Cotton

Softer than Regular Cotton

Pima cotton is made with extra-long-staple fibers that retain their remarkable softness when made into fabrics. Beddings that are made with Pima cotton are much softer compared to regular cotton, so the sheets and pillowcases can deliver a more incredible level of comfort. Pima cotton also has a smooth feel that will fall gently on your body and not snag on even rough or sensitive skin..

Enhanced Durability

The extra-long-staple fibers of Pima cotton not only deliver enhanced softness but also offer increased strength and durability. Pima cotton beddings can be used frequently, and they will maintain their remarkable appearance and softness for a long time, allowing you to fully maximize this investment without worrying about quality deterioration. You can expect your Pima cotton sheets, blankets, and pillowcases to last longer compared to products that are made using regular cotton.


Higher Price than Regular Cotton

Pima cotton has a higher price tag compared to regular cotton. However, the price difference corresponds to the increased softness and strength of Pima cotton beddings that can be enjoyed for a much longer period of time compared to sheets made with regular cotton.

Supima Cotton

Pima vs Supima - A Detailed Comparison

In a nutshell, Supima cotton is a superior type of Pima cotton. The extra-long-staple fibers that produce the strongest and softest cotton are grown only in the United States and account for less than 1% of the world’s supply of cotton, making it a rare and valuable type of cotton that is prized for its excellent softness and durability. The quality of Supima cotton is strictly regulated by the Supima Association, a non-profit organization that controls the trademarked brand. The association only allows manufacturers with a special license to use the Supima brand in their products, with every processing step verified so it passes the strict standards that will ultimately guarantee the top quality of Supima cotton products. Supima cotton is often used for products used in luxury accommodations, such as bath towels and beddings that can be enjoyed in the most exclusive hotels and resorts.


Low Impact on the Environment

Supima cotton is farmed in such a way that growth, cultivation, and harvesting results in minimal to zero impact on the environment. State-of-the-art technology is used to guarantee that the entire process will meet strict standards. The soil where the cotton plant is grown is constantly monitored to ensure that the conditions for growing the plant are maintained at an optimal level for the best results. The tractors used to plant and harvest the cotton fibers are equipped with GPS navigation systems for efficient tracking purposes.

Softer than Pima Cotton

Supima cotton is even softer than Pima cotton – which already has an enhanced softness compared to regular cotton. Supima cotton has the strongest and longest cotton fibers, and this works to deliver a fantastic softness that almost feels like silk. This cotton is fluffier compared to Pima cotton, and beddings that are made purely with Supima cotton, though rare, can give you an amazingly comfortable sleep experience.

Stronger Material

Supima cotton is much stronger compared to regular cotton and will last longer. The sheets that are made with this superior type of cotton will last for years – much longer than the length of time that you can expect to enjoy regular cotton sheets. This durability also means that the performance and appearance of Supima cotton products will not quickly deteriorate even with continuous use.


Very Expensive

Supima cotton offers the highest quality in terms of softness and strength, and its price reflects that top quality. Supima cotton beddings can be expected to have a price that is two times higher than Pima cotton, and three times more expensive compared to regular cotton sheets. However, this high price can be worth it to those who are willing to spend more for the premium quality and feel of Supima cotton beddings.

Pima vs Supima - A Detailed Comparison

Pima Vs Supima - Comparison

Pima Cotton Supima Cotton
Country of Origin
Peru, Australia, USA
Softer than regular cotton
Silky soft (softer than Pima cotton)
Strength & Durability
Stronger than standard cotton
Strongest and lasts the longest
Expensive – 2x the price of regular cotton
Very expensive – 3x the price of regular cotton

Key Takeaways

  • Pima cotton and Supima cotton are both extra-long-staple cotton that has higher quality features compared to regular cotton.
  • Pima cotton feels softer and is stronger compared to regular cotton that has shorter fibers.
  • Supima cotton is strictly regulated by the Supima Association to guarantee the superior quality of every product bearing the Supima brand trademark.
  • Supima cotton is even softer than Pima cotton and lasts the longest compared to all cotton types. It is also a rare type of cotton that is only grown in the US.
  • Supima cotton is the most expensive type of cotton, but its top quality more than makes up for the extreme price difference compared to regular and Pima cotton.


Q: Why is Pima cotton better than regular cotton?

A: Pima cotton has long cotton fibers that result in increased softness and durability compared to regular cotton fabric.

Q: Are Supima cotton sheets considered luxurious?

A: Yes. Supima cotton is a rare type of cotton that is grown only in the US and accounts for only 1% of the total cotton supply in the world. This top-quality cotton is usually found in beddings and bath amenities that can be found in luxury hotels and resorts.

Q: Will Pima cotton and Supima cotton beddings last long?

A: Yes, Pima cotton and Supima cotton products offer increased strength and durability that can be enjoyed for a longer time compared to regular cotton.

Q: How expensive are products made with Pima cotton and Supima cotton?

A: On average, Pima cotton products are twice as expensive as regular cotton items, while Supima cotton is often three times more expensive.


Pima cotton and Supima cotton beddings deliver only the most superior features when it comes to beddings. Choosing either material for your sheets and pillowcases can bring a wonderful enhancement to your bedroom, instantly transforming it into a welcoming space that exudes luxury and the highest level of comfort.


Yale Environment Review – https://environment-review.yale.edu/bed-sheets-and-beyond-life-cycle-assessment-results-can-influence-customer-choice-0

University of Arizona – https://repository.arizona.edu/bitstream/handle/10150/553949/AZU_TD_BOX256_E9791_1960_82.pdf?sequence=1

Agriculture Journals – https://www.agriculturejournals.cz/publicFiles/166956.pdf

USDA Agricultural Research Service – https://www.ars.usda.gov/news-events/news/research-news/2020/a-new-option-for-texas-pima-cotton/

Iowa State University – https://lib.dr.iastate.edu/cgi/viewcontent.cgi?article=16616&context=rtd

Research Gate – https://www.researchgate.net/publication/293525780_Supima_Consortium_and_ELS_cotton

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