Our society would be much healthier if we paid more attention to our quality of sleep. Getting enough rest at night can make us happier, more energetic, and healthier. Sleep helps us build long-term memories, but it is also responsible for boosting our creativity.
There are many factors that could make it harder for you to find asleep at night. There might be too much noise, your room could be too warm, or your pillow might be the culprit.
Whatever is the problem, we encourage you to create an ideal sleep environment so that you won’t toss and turn for hours before you finally fall asleep.
Regardless of whether you have trouble sleeping at night or if you have decided that it’s high time that you bought a new pillow – you have come to the right place. We know how difficult it is to find a pillow with which you’ll be perfectly happy.
There are many different types of pillows available on the market, but the problem is that a pillow that works great for one person might be a bad choice for someone else. That’s because people have their favorite sleeping positions.
On top of that, our bodies differ as well. If you are looking for pillows that will help you wake up feeling refreshed and well-rested, we need to explain a few things first.
How Do I Choose the Right Pillow?
The first thing you should consider if you want to buy a pillow is your sleeping position. Some people prefer to sleep on their backs; others only find a side position to be comfortable, whereas others fall asleep quickly only if they lay on their stomachs.
Most people sleep on their side, and the fewest – on their stomach. Before you start wondering what the best pillow material is or whether you want it to stay cool at all times, you should know your favorite sleep position.
If there isn’t one sleep position that you prefer, then you are probably a combination sleeper. Nothing wrong with that; it’s just that you need to find a pillow that will allow you to sleep comfortably in all positions.
Once you know how you tend to fall asleep, you can start looking for pillows with suitable loft (height) and firmness.
It’s not only a matter of what feels right; the point of choosing a pillow based on your favorite sleeping position is to keep neutral spine alignment.
A badly-chosen pillow can make you feel uncomfortable, and in the long run, can even cause neck and spinal pain.
In a moment we’ll go over the most popular types of pillows, providing their advantages and disadvantages. We’ll also explain why you shouldn’t cut corners when shopping for a new pillow. In the later part of our article, you’ll also find information about the types of pillows that we recommend based on your favorite sleeping position.
Top Pillows in 2020
The primary objective of a perfect pillow is to keep your neck in a neutral position. Our bodies differ from each other, which is why your partner’s favorite pillow might not work for you.
It doesn’t mean that some pillows aren’t better than others. Below you will find a list of pillows that we find worth recommending. Does that mean that they will work for everyone? Not really.
After you finish reading this article, we encourage you to try those pillows for yourself. Many pillow manufacturers allow their customers to return pillows even after several months of use. This way, you wouldn’t have to rely on someone else’s opinion, but on your own experience.
Best Memory Foam Pillow
Memory foam pillows are among the most popular ones available on the market. Why? They contour perfectly to your neck and head, which ensures that you rest comfortably without putting too much weight on one part of your body.
Memory foam is an extremely responsive material, which is why it is especially recommended for people with injuries, as their neck and head will be fully supported at all times.
On the other hand, memory foam pillows are not recommended for little babies. That’s because the material can make it difficult for them to breathe.
If you are a hot sleeper or live in a warm region, memory foam pillows could make it harder for you to get a good night’s rest. Memory foam can retain too much heat, which could cause you to sweat profusely.
Memory foam pillows are great for people with allergies, as they inhibit the growth of dust mites and fungus.
Best Latex Pillow
Whereas it takes some time for memory foam pillows to return to their previous shape, latex pillows do it much more quickly. Similarly, they also contour to your head and neck, but the material won’t retain its shape for as long as in the case of memory foam pillows.
Latex pillows are also a great choice if you are suffering from allergies. However, a clear advantage of latex pillows is that you can use them for a really long time – they need to be replaced after 3 to 4 years of use.
Unfortunately, they are also slightly more expensive than other types of pillows, which somewhat counterbalances their long lifespan.
Although latex pillows are generally recommended for people with allergies, it is possible to be allergic to latex. It’s a relatively rare allergy, but we recommend checking if you don’t have it before you buy latex pillows, or you might be in for an unpleasant surprise.
Best Travel Pillow
For many people flying is a stressful experience even if it isn’t their first or second time on an airplane. On top of that, the flight could last for many hours.
To make this experience less of an ordeal, numerous individuals decide to spend this stressful time in the arms of Morpheus. However, finding a comfortable position to sleep in an airplane seat might prove troublesome.
Thankfully, on such occasions, we can use travel pillows.
Travel pillows are a different animal from the ones that you keep in your bedroom. They are usually U-shaped, though, for those who are bored with this design, there are also countless others. They make it easier to fall asleep on an airplane but can also save you from neck strain.
We recommend trying out different designs to see which one suits you best. If you don’t spend too much time on airplanes, you can probably stick to travel pillows that are sold at airports.
Unfortunately, they usually cost more than the same pillows when bought in other places; their variety is also rather limited. That’s why we recommend purchasing a travel pillow much earlier than just before the flight, preferably on another day.
You would have more time to find the one that would help support your neck throughout the entire flight so that you would fall asleep easily and feel rested when you finally arrive at your destination.
If you aren’t sure which travel pillows are worth considering, we recommend checking our article where we compare 5 popular travel pillows.
To make your flight even more comfortable, we recommend buying a sleep mask that would block out the light. It would help your body release melatonin, which is a sleep hormone.
Additionally, if no matter how often you fly, it’s still a stressful experience, you should never get on board without your headphones. Listening to your favorite music can make the flight much less stressful, and if your stress levels are high, you’ll have trouble falling asleep even if you buy the best travel pillow you could find.
Most of us don’t think much about the type of pillow we need. If it isn’t dirty and hard as a rock, then it will certainly do, right?
Although our bodies are capable of withstanding many hardships, we live increasingly longer lives, which is why we should pay more attention to our health. Even as simple a thing as a pillow can have a significant impact on our health and well-being.
A poorly-chosen pillow will make it harder for you to get a good night’s rest, and sleep has a profound effect on our physical and mental health. Apart from restoring our energy levels, sleep makes it easier to concentrate and be productive. It also makes us less susceptible to numerous dangerous diseases and helps our bodies maintain a chemical balance, which affects our mood.
That’s why you shouldn’t spare time or effort to find a pillow that will keep your body healthy and rested by allowing you to get a proper amount of restorative sleep.
Below you will find answers to the most common questions about pillows. If you think that we’ve missed something – let us know!
What Pillow Is Best for Stomach Sleepers?
If you are a stomach sleeper, you need a soft pillow with a low loft. This way, you would maintain neutral spine alignment throughout the night, which would save you from neck pain in the morning.
A pillow with a considerable height would cause your head to be turned upward, which wouldn’t be healthy for your spine as it would put a strain on your neck. Many doctors argue that, ideally, stomach sleepers should sleep without a pillow. However, if you cannot imagine sleeping without one, you should choose a pillow with a low profile.
What Is the Best Pillow for Side Sleepers?
If you prefer to sleep on your side, you should choose a firm pillow with a considerable loft. If you don’t use a pillow at all, your head will turn downward, but even a pillow with a low profile won’t be enough to maintain neutral spine alignment.
You’ll need a pillow with a pretty high loft to fill the space between your neck and arm, though depending on your body, the exact size will vary. However, simply choosing a large pillow won’t do. If it’s not firm enough, you’ll sink in it, and you’ll wake up in pain.
What Is the Best Pillow for Back Sleepers?
If you are a back sleeper, it’s best to stick to pillows with medium loft and firmness. It’s not the same as in the case of stomach sleepers where a pillow has to be rather small, but on the other hand, you don’t need a particularly large one either.
We recommend experimenting with several different pillows as that’s the only way to find out which one would be best – it all depends on the size of your body. If you want to ensure that you keep neutral spine alignment throughout the night, you could even place a pillow under your knees. It would further reduce the strain on your body.
What Is the Best Pillow for Combination Sleepers?
What if you are a combination sleeper? If you don’t have one preferred position, but instead tend to fall asleep either on your back, stomach or on your side, you need a responsive pillow. What does it mean?
When you change your sleeping position, a responsive pillow will contour to your body so that you’ll be comfortable.
We also recommend being more specific – if you are a combination sleeper who falls asleep either on your back or on your side, then you should generally choose from pillows with higher lofts. On the other hand, if you are a combination sleeper who never falls asleep on your side, then you don’t need a pillow with a high loft.
What Is the Best Pillow for Neck Pain?
If you are suffering from neck pain, you should put more effort into finding a perfect pillow. That’s because general information about loft and firmness won’t be of much use to you – you’ll need to take the nature of your health problems into account.
Generally speaking, the pillow should support your neck, so you shouldn’t choose one with a really low loft. On the other hand, a pillow with a high loft can put additional strain on your neck, causing further health problems.
For people with neck pain, we recommend relatively firm pillows that contour to your neck.
Alternatively, you could choose a pillow – like the one manufactured by Casper – that allows you to adjust the amount of fill. This way, it would be possible for you to experiment with different volumes.
We recommend visiting a doctor before you buy any pillows for neck pain – they might be able to give you more specific tips based on your health condition.
How Long Should You Keep Pillows?
Even if you find a pillow that you’ll be perfectly happy with, you’ll have to replace it eventually. If you have a latex pillow, it might last you for 3 to 4 years, whereas a polyester pillow won’t serve you that long – you’ll have to replace it after two years.
If you wash it frequently, then you might be able to prolong its lifespan, but sooner or later, you’ll have to start looking for another pillow. Why?
Pillows absorb your body oil, but also dust and skin cells. It creates the perfect condition for dust mites to grow. Apart from being gross, dust mites can trigger asthma and allergic reactions. If you suffer from any of those health conditions, you should remember to frequently wash your pillowcase, which would prevent the growth of dust mites.
If a person with allergy doesn’t wash their pillowcase at least once every two weeks, they are likely to have difficulty sleeping at night.
After long use, your pillow might lose its structural integrity. It means that it won’t be able to support your neck in a stable position throughout the night, which could lead to neck strain. It would be especially a serious problem if you are a side sleeper, or if you already have some problems with your neck, as you would sink into your pillow.
If you have recently changed your favorite sleeping position, we recommend buying a new pillow so that you would maintain neutral spine alignment. You might get attached to your favorite pillow, but you should prioritize health considerations over emotional attachment.
Most pillows aren’t washable and need to be dry cleaned – you can usually find this information on a pillow’s label.
By using a pillow protector, you will increase the lifespan of a pillow. There also won’t be a need to clean it as often. The pillow protector should be cleaned at least once a month.
We hope that after reading this article, you won’t have any problems finding a pillow that will help you get a good night’s rest. When shopping for a new one, there are several factors to which you should pay attention – such as loft, firmness, but also the material from which the pillow is made.
If you still have some questions, then don’t hesitate to contact us – we’ll be glad to help you!