There are a variety of fillings to choose from to use in a weighted blanket. What is best and has the longest lasting effect?
The most popular options are polypropylene (PP) pellets and glass beads.
Here are few things to consider when making your purchase:
1) Toxicity Seems like a big deal since its covering your body, right?! It's important to look for BPA-free, non-toxic polypropylene pellets. BPA exhibits toxic, endocrine, mutagenic and carcinogenic effects in living organisms...something you want to stay clear of. Consider using a virgin material to avoid toxicity.
2) Odor This can be common in recycled plastic due to the additives or contaminants. Using virgin materials means no contaminants, thus no odor. This doesn't mean that recycled materials should be avoided. Any odor that is noticed can be resolved by airing the pellets outside for a few days or using a odor neutralizer such as Fabreze.
3) Weight This is important when figuring out how to fill your weighted blanket. Glass beads tend to be the heaviest, followed by PP pellets. Most manufacturers will give you a weight to cup ratio to help determine the amount you need for your project.
4) Texture This is super important to consider when buying your filling. PP pellets can vary in size and shape. For the most comfort, its prudent to find a pellet that is round and symmetrical. If you are making a blanket for someone with sensory issues, they may enjoy being able to "fidget" with the pellets inside. Glass beads are comparable to a fine sand, creating a lower profile blanket. Be aware that the fine texture of the glass beads may pass through the fabric or shift between the stitched pockets.
5) Cost Filling for a weighted blanket can be expensive. The most expensive filling is glass beads, followed by PP pellets. When possible buying poly pellets in bulk is the most economical.
I hope this helps you with your search for the perfect filling for your weighted blanket!