14 Best Throw Blankets, Recommended by Experts

After weighing the options, our experts agree that the Mercury Throw is the best

We independently research, test, review, and recommend the best products—learn more about our process. If you buy something through our links, we may earn a commission.

Whether they’re using it as a cape, or are wrapped in it during a power nap, many kids can't go without a well-worn and well-loved blanket that gives them a sense of comfort—after all, it’s called a “security blanket” for a reason. This isn’t necessarily something we grow out of as adults (although ideally, our blanket usage is limited to within our homes). And that’s where the throw blanket comes in.

Unlike other bed linens made specifically to fit twin, full, queen, or king-sized beds, throw blankets are smaller and can be used anywhere (and by anyone) in a home—though most are found draped over couches and living room chairs. 

In addition to being part of our home’s decor, throw blankets can also come with mental health benefits. “Having a buffer object between ourselves and the world, is a form of self-soothing,” Amber Dunford, Psy. M., a psychologist specializing in design psychology and style director at Overstock.com, says. “People will often reach for a pillow or blanket when in distress, as it allows for a psychological barrier between us and the scenario at hand.” 

Below we weigh the pros and cons of the best throw blankets to see which are worth the investment and highlight your best options broken down by material, price point, and other features.

Here are the best throw blankets on the market, according to our research.

Best Overall: Mercury Row Helman Cotton Throw

Mercury Row Helman Cotton Throw

Source: Wayfair

Pros
  • Reversible

  • Textured

  • Suitable for year-round use

Cons
  • Some may find the woven cotton too stiff

  • Line-dry only

This is the Goldilocks of throw blankets: Not too heavy or too light; not too plain or too busy. Between the pattern woven into the soft, cotton fabric and the knotted fringe tassels lining the top and bottom sides of the blanket, we like that it has a more elevated look than many on the market.

We also think this design makes it blend in seamlessly with the rest of your decor, regardless of your style. Made of 100-percent cotton, it will keep you warm when there’s a chill in the air but is light enough to use throughout the summer as well.

Dimensions: 50 x 60 inches | Thickness: Medium/thin | Weight: 2 pounds | Material: 100% cotton

What the Experts Say

“Cotton blankets are great for summer because of their breathability, which helps regulate your temperature and keeps you cool on a hot night,” —Amber Dunford, Psy. Md, psychologist specializing in design psychology and style director at Overstock.com.

Best Budget: IKEA NGABRITTA Throw

IKEA NGABRITTA Throw

Source: IKEA

Pros
  • Machine-washable

  • Material feels like blend of natural fibers

Cons
  • Knitted texture may cause it to snag

  • May shed before first wash

When it comes to fabrics, some made from synthetic materials can have a bad rap for feeling “fake” compared to wool or cotton. But this throw from IKEA manages to blend the affordability and easy maintenance of acrylic with the softness of sustainably-sourced cotton to make one appealing blanket.

Designed by Synnöve Mork, we love that the knitted throw is available in five colors (off-white, red, light-gray, pale pink, and yellow) and adds a layer of texture to any room or piece of furniture it’s folded up on or draped across.

Dimensions: 67 x 51 inches | Thickness: Medium | Weight: 2.375 pounds | Material: Acrylic (80% ) and cotton (20%)

What the Experts Say

“Acrylic is warm, lightweight, and hypoallergenic. It can imitate the feeling of natural fibers, but it is much easier to care for,” —Amber Dunford, Psy. Md, psychologist specializing in design psychology and style director at Overstock.com.

Best Splurge: Vacilando Studios Sunfair Quilt

Vacilando Studios Sunfair Quilt

Source: West Elm

Pros
  • Handcrafted 

  • Purchase supports independent designers

  • Bright and cheerful colors

Cons
  • Delivery may take some time

  • Expensive

Though quilts aren’t typically the first thing that comes to mind when we think of throw blankets, the size of this one from West Elm is comparable to the rest of the throws on our list.

But what makes this one worthy of a splurge is the calming weight of three layers of material (the top, batting, and back) and the fact that it’s an actual handcrafted work of art. And unlike many other handmade linens (and pieces of art), this throw is machine-washable.

Dimensions: 56 x 64 inches | Thickness: Multi-layered | Weight: Not Listed | Material: Unbleached cotton

What the Experts Say

“Cotton blankets are soft and hypoallergenic, which makes them perfect for allergy sufferers, babies, or people with sensitive skin," —Amber Dunford, Psy. Md, psychologist specializing in design psychology and style director at Overstock.com.

Best Thick: Alpine Mega Cable Sherpa Back Throw

Alpine Mega Cable Sherpa Back Throw

Source: Pottery Barn

Pros
  • Two blanket types in one

  • Feels dense and substantial

  • Stylish

Cons
  • Takes up a lot of space

  • May be too thick for hot climates

The mere presence of this throw adds both coziness and texture to a room—after all, this isn’t your average woven blanket: it’s mega cable. The oversized knit not only makes this throw supremely warm but we also like that it sets it apart from a style perspective.

Plus, it’s available in four colors (charcoal, ivory, camel, and cardinal) giving you plenty of options for working it into your decor.

Dimensions: 50 x 60 inches | Thickness: Chunky | Weight: Not Listed | Material: Front: Acrylic; Back: Polyester sherpa

Best Lightweight: Mainstays Extra Plush Lightweight

Mainstays Extra Plush Lightweight

Source: Mainstays

Pros
  • Budget-friendly

  • Luxuriously, fluffy sherpa

  • Seamless

Cons
  • Some pet hair clings to fabric

  • More functional than stylish 

Weighing in at 1 pound, allow us to introduce you to this plush-yet-lightweight throw. Because it’s from Mainstays—one of Walmart’s store brands—it comes at a widely accessible price point, meaning you can get one for each room in your home (or family member) without breaking the bank.

And while there are plenty of lightweight throws and sherpa blankets out there, what sets this one apart is the combination of the luxuriously soft material and a weight light enough to be used in any season.

Dimensions: 50 x 60 inches | Thickness: Lightweight | Weight: 1 pound | Material: Polyester

Best for Kids: Chifave Throw Blanket for Children

Chifave Throw Blanket for Children

Source: Chifave

Pros
  • Doesn’t shed

  • Classic gender-neutral dinosaur print

  • Portable and perfect for the car

Cons
  • Polyester isn’t as breathable as cotton

  • White background color shows stains

Children have a tendency to change their minds a lot, and this throw is up for the challenge. That’s because one side is soft and smooth, while the other is fluffy and shaggy—like their favorite stuffed animal—giving them two tactile options. And did we mention that the smooth side has a colorful dinosaur print on it?

But there’s plenty for parents and caregivers to like, too, including the fact that the throw is hypoallergenic, designed not to pill or shed, and is easy to wash when accidents happen.

Dimensions: 60 x 50 inches | Thickness: Lightweight | Weight: 1.32 pounds | Material: Polyester

What the Experts Say

“The right blanket can provide a soothing textile effect on your skin, which also provides comfort,” —Angeleena May, LMHC, licensed mental health counselor and executive director at AMFM Healthcare.

Best Extra-Large: Engebretsen Oversized Fleece and Sherpa Blanket

Engebretsen Overiszed Fleece and Sherpa Blanket

Source: Engebretsen

Pros
  • Available in five neutral shades

  • Pre-shrunk

  • Retains its shape

Cons
  • Bulky

  • Not the most stylish option

Whether you want to cuddle up with the rest of your family on the couch or roll yourself up like a human burrito, this oversized throw has (literally) got you covered. Other than the amount of coverage it provides, the other defining feature of this blanket is its material.

Although one side of the throw is fleece and the other is sherpa, we love that both are made using 100-percent microfiber polyester yarns, making the throw stain- and fade-resistant, machine washable, and quick to dry (so you can get it back on the couch where it belongs as soon as possible).

Dimensions: 50 x 70 inches | Thickness: Medium | Weight: 2.7 pounds | Material: Microfiber polyester

Best for Travel: zzlamb Portable Travel Blanket

zzlamb Portable Travel Blanket

Source: zzlamb

Pros
  • Snaps to keep the blanket in place

  • Silky-feeling outside, fluffy inside

  • Machine-washable

Cons
  • Must squeeze air out of blanket before packing it

  • Not suitable for those allergic to down

Travel throws are almost invariably made out of fleece polyester, so when we spotted this one—that’s more like a comforter you’d put on your bed at home than something you’d get free from your bank—it got our attention. That’s because the filling is, in fact, mostly down (with some feather filler).

But don’t be intimidated: it’s machine-washable, and thanks to the polyester outer layer, the throw dries quickly. Another standout feature is a row of snaps on one side of the blanket, which allows you to wear it like a cape, or secure it around yourself while seated on an airplane or train so it doesn’t fall off and hit the floor.

Dimensions: 50 x 60 inches | Thickness: Thin | Weight: 4.49 pounds | Material: Polyester

What the Experts Say

“Being wrapped in a blanket provides our bodies with a sense of security, and increased body temperature regulation, which can lead to a more relaxed state, decreased blood pressure, and lower heart rate,”—Angeleena May, LMHC, licensed mental health counselor and executive director at AMFM Healthcare.

Best Heated: Serta Microplush Electric Heated Warming Throw Blanket

Serta Microplush Electric Heated Warming Throw Blanket

Source: Serta

Pros
  • Automatic shut-off for safety

  • Ultra-thin heating wires

  • Five heat settings

Cons
  • Can be slippery on furniture

  • Doesn’t get as hot as other heated blankets

If your electric blanket experience has mostly been with older models—you know, the kind with stiff wires inside that get hot enough to cook a frozen dinner—allow this heated throw to convert you. While there are plenty of larger heated blankets on the market, this one is more compact in size, allowing you to bring it from room to room easily.

And we love that there’s no need to worry about this throw overheating if you unintentionally leave it on: it automatically shuts off after four hours. The blanket itself is reversible, with microfleece on one side and sherpa on the other. And best of all, the heating wires are incredibly thin and don’t feel stiff. 

Dimensions: 50 x 60 inches | Thickness: Thin | Weight: 4.49 pounds | Material: Polyester

Best Themed: EFINLUCKY Friends TV Show Blanket

EFINLUCKY Friends TV Show Blanket

Source: EFINLUCKY

Pros
  • Makes a great gift

  • Unique style

Cons
  • Exceptionally thin

  • Won't blend in with the background

When it comes to choosing a throw blanket, not everyone is looking for one that matches their color scheme and design aesthetic. Instead, they want a blanket that is comfortable, cozy and makes them happy. And if they happen to be fans of the perennially popular 1990s sitcom "Friends", this one fits the bill.

Made of soft flannel, the back of the blanket is white, while the front features custom-printed items and moments from the show—including a lobster, a holiday armadillo, a pair of BarcaLoungers, and a smelly cat—childhood nostalgia in a nutshell.

Dimensions: 50 x 60 inches | Thickness: Thin | Weight: 1.37 pounds | Material: Flannel fleece

What Experts Say

“Having a go-to throw that you can curl up in can help you create some decompression routines, which are important for winding down,” —Amber Dunford, Psy. Md, psychologist specializing in design psychology and style director at Overstock.com.

Best Faux Fur: UGG Euphoria Throw

UGG Euphoria Throw

Source: UGG

Pros
  • Insert made from down and feathers

  • Removable cover for easy washing

Cons
  • Not suitable for those allergic to down and/or feathers

It’s not surprising that the company best known for their shearling-lined boots also know their way around faux fur. But this throw’s coziness factor doesn’t end there: the backside of the blanket is made from plush flannel, and inside you’ll find what’s essentially a down comforter.

This all adds up to an incredibly warm, beautifully textured throw, available in four neutral colors that we think would look great draped over a couch, overstuffed chair, or the end of your bed.

Dimensions: 50 x 70 inches | Thickness: Heavy, plush | Weight: 5.54 pounds | Material: Polyester

Best Cotton: The Company Store Gossamer Cotton Blanket

Gossamer Cotton Blanket

Courtesy of The Company Store

Pros
  • Woven using three layers of cotton

  • Available in 15 colors

  • Easy to fold and neatly display

Cons
  • Wrinkles quickly

  • Snags easily when used by dogs or cats with nails

A favorite of one of our experts, this throw is the perfect investment piece. As fluffy, furry, and fuzzy as synthetic materials can be, there’s a reason classic cotton linens are still around: they can be simultaneously lightweight and cozy, and feel great against your skin.

In fact, this throw feels like something you’d find at your grandma’s house or a quaint bed and breakfast, folded neatly and resting on a chair in front of the fireplace. We would love to curl up with it and a book and cup of tea.

It’s on the higher end of the cost spectrum, but this is the type of blanket you buy with the intention of keeping it indefinitely. Perfect for year-round use, the throw is available in a large assortment of colors to match your room or your mood.

Dimensions: 50 x 70 inches | Thickness: Lightweight | Weight: Not Listed | Material: 100% cotton

Best Soft: Lands' End Cozy Plush Fleece Throw Blanket

Lands' End Cozy Plush Fleece Throw Blanket
Pros
  • Higher-quality fleece than most throws

  • Budget-friendly

  • Free swatches available before purchase

Cons
  • Some may prefer a throw with more weight

  • Can attract lint and pet fur

Not all fleece is created equal, and the kind used for these throws is among the best there is. Instead of that staticky fleece that catches on even the smallest patch of dry skin, this brushed fleece feels like velvet. It also doesn’t pill, which means you won’t be picking tiny specs of it off the rug and furniture constantly. And the blanket will look new for years to come.

Though the throw isn’t necessarily something you’d purchase as a key component of your decor, it is available in ten colors, and we like that it’s possible to order a free swatch to see if you like the color (and fabric) before purchasing the blanket.

Dimensions: 50 x 72 inches | Thickness: Thin | Weight: 1.29 pounds | Material: Polyester

What the Experts Say

“This throw blanket is my personal favorite. It’s breathable, soothing against the skin, and comes in a variety of attractive colors," —Angeleena May, LMHC, licensed mental health counselor and executive director at AMFM Healthcare.

Best Design: Claudia Pearson Ebb & Flow Blanket

Claudia Pearson Ebb & Flow Blanket

Source: West Elm

Pros
  • Classic-yet-modern design

  • Breathable

  • Purchase supports independent designers

Cons
  • Delivery may take some time

If the designs on these throws look familiar, it may be because they’re the work of Brooklyn-based artist Claudia Pearson, whose illustrations have appeared in places like children’s books and the New Yorker, among others.

Though the handcrafted blankets are pieces of art themselves—and could certainly work hanging on the wall as tapestries—they are made from soft and sustainable cotton and are meant to be used as blankets. After wrapping yourself up in one, there’s no way you’d let it serve any other purpose.

We also like that the throw folds up neatly when not in use, adding elements of texture and style to any room.

Dimensions: 50 x 60 inches | Thickness: Medium | Weight: Not Listed | Material: Cotton

Final Verdict

Given that people buy throw blankets for different purposes and with a range of preferences, it’s hard to single one out as the best on the market. Having said that, the ultra-versatile Mercury Helman Cotton Throw (view at Wayfair) is a strong contender, thanks to its ability to provide comfort with enough (but not too much) warmth any time of year, and a high-end look at an affordable price.

We recommend the throw for people who prefer blankets made of natural fibers, but who are allergic to wool (or aren’t a fan of the texture).

How We Selected the Throw Blankets

In order to select our top picks for this article, we spent several hours over the course of two weeks researching hundreds of throw blankets currently on the market from the most popular brands and reputable retailers. We also spoke with a licensed mental health counselor and psychiatrist to learn more about the potential mental health benefits of using throw blankets, as well as a psychologist specializing in design psychology to find out how throw blankets can be both a part of our home decor, as well as a mental wellness strategy. 

Each of the experts offered insight into what to look for when purchasing throw blankets, in addition to providing a few of their top product recommendations. From there, we took numerous factors into consideration—including input from the experts, cost, material, special features, and design—to choose our picks for the best throw blankets on the market in 2022.

What to Look For in a Throw Blanket

Material

According to Bryan Bruno, MD, a psychiatrist and medical director at Mid City TMS in New York City, for many people, the material of a throw blanket can determine how they connect with the object. “Material and textural preferences vary, so when shopping for a blanket, consider what aspects of the blanket you will find comforting,” he says. One way to do this is to test a blanket’s fabric and texture before purchasing it. "The best way to do this is by touching it to the soft skin under your forearm to see if you like the feeling on sensitive skin,” Bruno says.

The fabric a throw blanket is made out of can make or break your experience using it, so picking one made from the material that best suits your needs is important. For example, blankets made from 100-percent cotton are soft, breathable, and hypoallergenic. Those allergic to wool, but still looking for something soft and warm may instead want to look for throw blankets made from fleece or acrylic fabrics.

Weight

In order to choose a throw blanket with the right weight for you, consider what temperature and pressure levels make you feel most at ease. “Some people find heavier, warmer throws comforting like a hug, while others may get too hot underneath them or find the weight suffocating,” Bruno says. “A lighter blanket may make someone feel unprotected, while for another it should be just the right kind of barrier,” he adds.

“The heavier the blanket, the more de-stimulating effect the blanket has on your body,” Angeleena May, LMHC, a licensed mental health counselor and executive director at AMFM Healthcare, says. “Also keep in mind desired effects, including whether temperature control or soothing sensation is most important to you,” she adds.

Color and Pattern 

From a design perspective, Dunford says that when selecting a throw blanket, you should consider the current decor of the room. “If you are working with a lot of prints in your space, avoid busier patterns on your throw, as they can read a bit messy and cause a space to feel visually cluttered,” she says. “This can lead to stress because we tend to overly scan environments with too many prints, which causes mental exhaustion," she adds.

Similarly, May says that when picking a throw blanket, you also should consider the place in which you intend to keep it. “Choosing something that matches your decor and you can easily leave on your couch or favorite chair will result in you utilizing the blanket more often, as it will naturally be in your environment,” she says.

When picking a color, Dunford recommends blankets “in lavender, watery blue, or deep indigo to create a soothing effect within the body, lowering blood pressure and heart rate.” But at the same time, she says that “warm colors can help us feel psychologically warmer,” so if you’re going for this effect, she suggests colors on the warmer side of the color wheel, like deep reds, oranges, or ochre.

Along the same lines, Bruno says that many people find purchasing a blanket in their favorite color to be the most soothing. But in situations where people have no color preference, he suggests going with cooler or neutral tones, because they tend to have a calming effect on the brain.

Frequently Asked Questions

  • How do you make a DIY throw blanket?

    Essentially, throw blankets are large pieces of fabric, so you can make your own DIY version in a pinch by covering yourself up with whatever you can find in your house—like a beach towel, a flat sheet, or even a (clean) tablecloth. 

    If you’re looking for a more permanent (but still very simple) DIY solution, you can make your own throw blanket without having to sew at all. To do this, start with two pieces of fabric that are each two yards in length. Most people use fleece, which is about 58-inches wide, to make these throws, but if you’re using another type of material, make sure it’s roughly the same width.

    Then place one piece of fabric on top of the other back-to-back, so that both the top and bottom of the blankets show the color and/or pattern you selected. 

    Then, with both pieces of material still together, measure and then cut out a 7-inch square from each corner of the blanket. From there, cut strips that are 1-inch wide and 7-inches long (and still attached to the fabric) around the entire perimeter of the fabric. Finally, tightly knot the two pieces of fabric together.

    When you’re finished, not only will you have a new throw blanket, but the repetitive activity of tying all the knots may be soothing, and help reduce your stress levels.

  • How do you fold a throw blanket?

    If you want to put some effort into how you display a throw blanket in your home, one option is to fold it before placing it on a piece of furniture. “When styling with throws, I typically fold it in half lengthwise, another fold down the center, and then grab a corner to literally throw it onto a bed or sofa,” Dunford says. “This prevents it from looking like a laundry pile and tends to give you the appearance of it being effortless, but still contained.”

  • How do you wash a throw blanket?

    The way you wash and care for a throw blanket depends on the type of fabric it’s made from. The best way to find that information, as well as how to wash a throw blanket, is by reading its label. “Follow the washing instructions that come with the throw to ensure you take proper care of the item,” Dunford says. “I would suggest washing them with similar textiles such as bedding, and keeping them on a gentle cycle to protect the fibers,” she adds.

  • How do you use a throw blanket?

    There is no need to put a lot of thought into how you use a throw blanket. In fact, Dunford says that they should be effortless and easy to use. “Throws have this name for a reason: they are meant to be thrown and shouldn’t require a lot of effort in styling,” she says. 

    Dunford’s personal styling preference for throw blankets is draping them over a chair or sofa, casually hanging on a blanket ladder, or tossed into a basket near seating areas. “This keeps them looking chic when not in use, but allows them to be easily reached for when curling up on the sofa or while sitting on a rug during game nights or social gatherings,” she says. 

    As far as how to use a throw blanket yourself, simply position it in a way that best serves your needs, whether that’s staying warm, being comforted, or a combination of both.

  • How big should a throw blanket be?

    In short, throw blankets should be big enough to make you comfortable, and not have to constantly reposition yourself to ensure that you’re sufficiently covered. For example, a taller person would likely need a bigger throw than someone shorter. And according to Dunford, it also depends on the season. 

    “I like to use larger, chunkier knit throws for colder months, and smaller lightweight throws for spring and summer,” she says. “If you are always fighting over who gets to keep their feet under a blanket, size up. The size of a throw comes down to personal preference, as some people love the feeling of being completely covered, while others just want a little warmth across their lap.”

  • Are throw blankets warm?

    This depends on the temperature in a room, as well as the weight and material of the throw blanket. “As a standard, a blanket with a thick, fluffy, soft material will retain more body heat and be warmer,” says Dunford. “If you run hot, I’d suggest a lighter fabric like a thin cotton or linen.” Also keep in mind that a throw blanket was not designed to be the only thing covering you up in bed throughout the night—that’s what sheets, bedspreads, comforters, and duvets are for (though not used all at once).

    While a throw blanket can help keep you toasty while sitting on the sofa, oftentimes it’s more of a source of comfort than warmth.

Why Trust Verywell Mind

As a seasoned health writer and editor with a special focus on mental health and well-being, and insomniac since childhood, Elizabeth Yuko understands the importance of sleep—including naps. She’s also the type of person who prefers to be covered in a blanket at all times (even if it's the middle of summer and it’s only a sheet).

Additionally, with decades of first-hand experience dealing with anxiety, depression, and post-traumatic stress disorder, she’s always on the lookout for new (and research-backed) products, techniques, and services that can help people cope with stress and other mental health challenges.

Was this page helpful?