How to Choose the Best Bed Pillow?
Table of Contents
Top Best Bed Pillows Based on Reviews and Price
Why You Need a Good Bed Pillow?
When we think about a good night’s sleep, the first things that come to mind are the bed and the mattress. Both get a lot of attention, and for a good reason. But at the same time, when it comes to sleep quality, no one can deny the significance of a great pillow.
It is fair to say that when it comes to sleep quality, they are as important as mattresses.
Sometimes, we can’t sleep because the pillow is all worn-out, and we keep on folding it up and scrunching to get into a comfortable position. Other times, we simply can’t get comfortable even if the pillow is brand new.
That’s because someone bought the pillow without taking into consideration anything. Hence, you need to keep in mind the following tips when searching for your next bed pillow.
Top 6 Factors to Consider Before Buying a Bed Pillow
The most important thing to know when choosing a new pillow is its primary role. A pillow helps to maintain your neck, head, and spine, all together in a neutral alignment. It needs to provide support to the natural curvature of your spine.
By keeping a neutral spine, you will be able to neutralize pressure throughout the entire body, as well as to alleviate any neck pain.
But here is the tricky part. Different sleeping positions call for a different pillow type to keep a healthy posture. Here is how to choose the best possible pillow for the different types of sleepers.
1. Pillows for Different Types of Sleepers
How to Choose a Pillow if You are a Back Sleeper?
Back sleepers can maintain a healthy posture while they sleep if they choose a pillow with medium firmness and medium loft. Furthermore, back sleepers might find it beneficial to choose a pillow with materials that “conform to the pressure.” One such material is memory foam.
The idea with the medium loft is that it can provide relief from the pressure on both the shoulders and the neck. A very lofty pillow means that the head will likely be craned upwards, whereas if it is not lofty enough, it will be pretty much as you were sleeping flat on the mattress.
Medium firmness is to keep the head supported and in proper alignment with the spine. Plus, it ensures that your pillow won’t easily get flat while you are sleeping at night. A soft pillow can easily lose its shape from the pressure of your head. Most back sleepers have their head tilted on the side while they sleep at night. Materials used to conform pressure ensure that the head is comfortably cradled.
How to Choose a Pillow if You are a Side Sleeper?
To keep their healthy posture, side sleepers can go with a pillow that provides firmer support and high loft. In terms of materials, their best choice is some fluffy material such as Kapok.
The high loft is essential because it will relieve the pressure from your shoulders. At the same time, it will make sure that the head is a bit propped up so that it is in alignment with the spine. Only pillows with medium and firm support can keep the neck and head in alignment with the spine all night long. A too-soft pillow will slowly sink, which will inevitably throw the spine out of alignment. The result will be a stiff neck in the morning.
The shapeable and fluffy pillow is perfect because it allows side sleepers to place one arm under their pillow. That is a common move for many side sleepers.
How to Choose a Pillow if You are a Stomach Sleeper?
From all sleeping positions, recommending the best sleeping pillow for a stomach sleeper is trickiest. Many experts even don’t recommend sleeping on your stomach because it negatively affects the position of the upper cervical spine.
In most cases, that means placing the cervical spine at its final rotation, which significantly increases the risk of neck strain. Plus, sleeping on the stomach puts your lower back under a lot of pressure.
Nevertheless, some people can’t help it and sleep on their stomachs. To mitigate at least some of the risks associated with stomach sleeping, you need a pillow featuring a low loft, compressible fill, and soft support.
Low loft supports the natural alignment of the spine’s C curve, whereas the soft support provides a comfortable buffer between the mattress and the sleeper. At the same time, the soft support will make sure that your head is not too propped up. Compressible fill with feathers or adjustable fill is very shareable and can help reduce the loft as much as it is needed.
Now, we’ve covered the various sleeping positions and how to choose a pillow based on that, it is time to move on the other factors to consider.
2. Consider the Pillow’s Filling
Nowadays, there are all sorts of fillings for pillows. But if we look more closely, we will see that three major types are widely used.
Feather Filling and Goose Down
Feather filling pillow and goose down pillow are two great choices if you enjoy being cradled. They both will make you feel toasty and warm during cold nights. When you are shopping for pillows with that type of filling, look for the fill power indicator. A fill power indicator refers to the amount of filling the pillow has. The rule here is simple; the more it has, the better the pillow is.
Spring memory foam conforms to your movements and molds itself to your head. After you get up, it will return to its initial shape. This filling is recommended for restless sleepers, people with spinal problems, and people with neck problems. No other material can distribute weight as effective as spring foam can. Its biggest drawback can be the high price point.
Pillows with polyester fillings can provide good support and are quite affordable. Their biggest drawback is that they are not as durable as the other materials on this list.
As mentioned earlier, there are many other types of fillings as well. Some of them are natural such as buckwheat hulls. They are made of organic latex, which is highly breathable and resists mites, mildew, and mold.
3. Consider the Casing Materials
Even though many people use their pillowcases, pillows almost by default come with their protective casing. The protective casing can be very influential to the comfort level, how air flows through the pillow, and so on.
Some of the most common casing materials include
This is one of the most widely used materials. It is 100% natural, very breathable, and presents a good balance between quality and price. Sometimes it is used in blends for increased softness and airflow.
Wool is excellent when it comes to both warmth and cooling. Typically, it is used in various blends because of its comfort features.
Even though this is a synthetic material, it feels quite natural. Poly-threads are strong, long-lasting, and very durable. Often they are blended with natural fibers.
Bamboo feels very soft and is hypoallergenic. Often it is part of many blends as it is very breathable and brings that cushion-like feel.
4. Choose the Size of the Pillow
When considering the size of your pillow, three prevailing factors matter most:
- The size of your bed
- The number of pillows you need
- The way you use your pillows
When making this choice, many people choose pillows that correspond to the size of their mattress (king, queen, standard mattress).
At the same time, that is not a rule written in stone, and you don’t have to follow it. For example, if you get an oversized pillow for a smaller mattress, the bed will feel cozy and enveloping.
On the other hand, if you are the reading type, heaving a smaller-size pillow means that you can use it to prop yourself against other pillows for reading. Even if you have a king-size mattress, a standard pillow might do just fine.
5. Consider the Weight of the Pillow
Latex and memory foam pillows can be quite heavy, whereas synthetic and polyester pillows are much lighter. In this regard, choosing the weight of the pillow is a matter of personal preference. If you are the type of person that continually moves and like to re-shape its pillow, it is recommended to go with a lither pillow.
6. Consider Temperature
Some people sleep hot. If you are one of those people, consider buying a pillow with breathable polyester or a cooling gel.
If you are serious about making a significant change, then you might even want to consider buying high-performance pillowcases that have moisture-wicking fabric such as athletic clothing. They are designed to prevent both moisture and heat.
Hopefully, everything you’ve learned here will stick with you and help you make the best possible choice. Other than the knowledge acquired here, stay persistent, and try to make as little compromises as possible. After all, your good night’s sleep is at stake.