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If you've gone shopping for new bedding recently, or ever for that matter, then you know how detailed, and sometimes confusing, the process can be. With so many different things to buy-sheets, mattresses, pillows, you name it-you also have to determine all the right details about each individual product to ensure you are buying the most comfortable bed supplies. When it comes to pillows, though, comfort is key. After all, the perfect bed pillow can make or break your night's sleep.


Pillows aren't just for sleeping though. They also come in handy for specific problems or events, like chronic pain or a serious surgery that has complicated your rest patterns. Pillows can improve all kinds of health problems, including sleep apnea, and they can relieve pain in targeted areas just by their shape or elevation. Firmness, size and interior material are three more very important factors that will differ from each type of pillow, and all serve specific purposes.


To expedite your buying process, we've created an in-depth list of the best pillows out there. If you've been having trouble sleeping, you'll be happy to know we've researched pillows that will meet your individual needs.


If you just have a few general questions, head on down to our FAQ section. We're happy to help you find the best pillow for your specific needs.

Product Reviews

Best Pillows in 2019

Here, we'll cover reviews on all different types of pillows and give you our top pick in each category. We'll break down the best pillows by size, sleep position and inner material and address all your questions along the way. Read on to find the best pillow for your sleeping habits!

 

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Know the Type

There's all different kinds of pillows out there. Some are best used to rest your head on each night, while others are specifically designed to help you with back pain by adjusting your posture. For all occasions and circumstances, there is a right pillow for you. Skim through our list to learn more.

 


 

Body Pillow

If you need to hold onto a pillow while you're sleeping, a body pillow is just for you. Body pillows are built to match most, if not all, of your body's length so that you can quite literally wrap your body around it. They essentially feel like a soft hug as they adjust to your body's shape and movements. Side sleepers often use body pillows because they give support to whichever way they face during sleep.

 

Body pillows also come in all shapes and sizes, which is good news for sleepers who toss and turn through the night. Pregnant women can particularly benefit from a body pillow, as it gives support across the stomach area. There are even body pillows shaped like a "u" that are made especially for pregnant women. These pillows work to improve sleep, which is often hard to come by when you're pregnant, as they wrap around the neck to reach both the back and stomach. They're great for nap time too, when all you want is a few extra minutes of rest.

 

Pros Cons
  • Safe for pregnant women
  • Supports entire body
  • Great for naps
  • Difficult to clean
  • Takes up lots of space
  • Don't fit well on small beds

 

Our Pick: Acanva Hypoallergenic Body Pillow

 

Acanva Hypoallergenic Body Pillow, 20x54, White

 

You don't have to worry about any allergies to feathers or itchy fabric with this pillow. Inside the 400 thread count cover is hypoallergenic polyester filling that is extremely soft and movable. You can put a custom cover over the pillow if you want, like a sherpa cover, for even more softness. Feel free to hold this pillow close all night, especially if you're typically a side sleeper.

 

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Husband Pillow

Working at a desk gets boring after a while, and it can even do a number on your back if you sit in one position too long. If you're a student, then you know the temptation of studying in your bed or even on the floor, especially if it means you don't have to sit at a desk anymore. But you'll need some kind of back support to get you through your work comfortably. Even if you just spend a lot of time reading or watching TV, it's important to always keep your posture in mind.

 

A husband pillow is the perfect type of pillow for these types of situations. Not only does it provide vertical support for your back, but also resting space for your arms. When you're studying or working at a desk, you don't always have the option of sitting on the world's most comfortable, ergonomic chair. You may, for instance, be working in a library for long hours in preparation for an important exam. Or, if you spend your evenings reading each night after work, you may not always prioritize sitting in a position that's healthy for your spine. Husband pillows can help you achieve great posture, though, no matter where you're working. And, most of them include a handle so you can easily move them from one room to another.

 

Pros Cons
  • Provides arm and back support
  • Come in multiple sizes
  • Improve posture
  • Can be extra-firm

 

Our Pick: mittaGonG Shredded Foam Reading Pillow

 

mittaGonG Shredded Foam Reading Pillow with Detachable Neck Roll Pillow & Support Bed Backrest Pillow with Arms - Great Support for Reading, Relaxing, Watching TV - Perfect for Adults, Teens, and Kids

 

Think a husband pillow is only comfortable for people without serious back problems? Think again. This reading pillow comes with a detachable neck rest, a removable, machine-washable cover and even an arm pocket to store your remote or reading materials. The pillow is filled with firm foam padding that's shredded to increase the level of support. Plus, you can rest your arms on the ultra-thick arm rests that rest higher than most other husband pillow armrests. You might actually enjoy studying with this pillow.

 

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Wedge Pillow

The angled elevation that is a hallmark characteristic of wedge pillows serves multiple important purposes. Most people purchase them to help with very specific medical conditions, like sleep apnea or circulation problems. If you struggle with snoring or frequently experience allergies that cause congestion, propping your head at an angle with a wedge pillow can help. Even if you have a bad cold, the simple act of elevating your head can decrease your chance in developing post-nasal drip that can lead to a nasty throat infection.

 

Wedge pillows also come in handy if you just had surgery or if you experience pain in specific areas of your body. They work to reduce the pain at targeted areas so you can sleep better and not focus in on the pain you're experiencing.

 

Because they aren't used as normal sleeping pillows, buying a wedge pillow is recommended if you are trying to relieve pain or elevate an area of your body. Their angles serve a purpose that a normal bed pillow cannot meet. They are constructed to elevate your targeted areas at just the right angle.

 

Pros Cons
  • Relieves pain
  • Angled for posture improvement
  • Elevates targeted areas
  • Reduces snoring
  • Can be extra-firm
  • Only supports targeted areas

 

Our Pick: Restorology Elevating Foam Leg Rest Pillow

Restorology Elevating Foam Leg Rest Pillow - Wedge Pillow - Reduces Back Pain and Improves Circulation - Includes Removable Cover

 

This wedge pillow from Restorology rests at seven inches high and comes wrapped in a removable, washable cover that's extremely soft to the touch. The inner foam helps with some of the most aggravating sleep problems out there, including restless leg syndrome, and can even help alleviate leg and pack pain when strategically placed near pain points. Go for a wedge pillow if you need targeted support.

 

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Water Pillow

When you think of a water pillow, your mind may automatically go to thinking about water beds. The great thing about water pillows, though, is that if you don't own a water bed, you can get some of the same benefits from a water pillow! It turns out these pillows offer much more than meets the eye.

 

In general, water pillows make it easier for people who have complicated sleeping conditions to get a decent night's rest. Some brands come with adjustable firmness levels that will change as you increase and decrease the amount of water in the pillow. They also target pain areas in the body, often with multiple layers of water, foam and padding that each play their own part in relieving pain.

 

Because they conform so well to an individual's body shape and movements, water pillows are ideal for people who suffer with chronic pain that keeps them from getting a quality night's sleep. If you frequently suffer from headaches or migraines that prevent you from sleeping properly, a water pillow might be for you, too.

 

Pros Cons
  • Supports head and neck
  • Good for chronic pain and pressure relief
  • Adjusts to your movements
  • Mold can develop if not properly taken care of

 

Our Pick: Chiroflow Pillow

CHIROFLOW PILLOW

Similar to memory foam pillows, water pillows are known to adjust to your body movements and shape. This Chiroflow pillow comes with a water layer base, and you can customize the firmness to your preference. Customer reviews have shown the pillow is ideal when it comes to pain relief, specifically for people who have suffered traumatic injuries or been in accidents that left their body in pain. No matter what position you're used to sleeping in, a water pillow will follow your movements to bring you relief and comfort as you rest.

 

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Tempur-Pedic Pillow

Tempur-Pedic is one of the most well-known brands when it comes to bedding. What's fascinating is the background story on the way Tempur-Pedic constructed their pillows. It turns out, NASA developed their Tempur material, which works specifically to relieve pressure in your body by absorbing the pressure. The material's original purpose was to take in the G-force from astronauts as they went to space. So with Tempur-Pedic, you know you're getting the best, most well-crafted pillows ever.

 

Tempur-Pedic pillows are perfect for customers who are "undecided" about what type of pillow they need. This is true because Tempur-Pedic has pillows for every type of sleeper. Aside from choosing the pillow's proper size, you can specify what type of material and even temperature level you want the pillow to have. Even if you're a hot sleeper and have struggled to find a foam pillow that doesn't heat up through the night, Tempur-Pedic has you covered.

 

On top of all the wonderful, individually tuned qualities that you can tailor to your preferences, you can also expect to get some pain relief with a Tempur-Pedic pillow. Their covers are removable and machine-washable, too, so you can be confident in knowing they'll be clean to your standards.

 

Pros Cons
  • Multiple options based on size, temperature and material
  • Conforms to individual body shape
  • Can relieve body pain
  • Can be expensive
  • Can take time to get used to

 

Our Pick: Tempur-Pedic Tempur-Cloud Soft and Conforming Pillow

Tempur-Pedic TEMPUR-Cloud Soft & Conforming Queen Size Pillow, Soft Support Washable Cover, Assembled in the USA, 5 YR Warranty, White

 

Want a pillow that will support your head, neck and shoulders all at once? This Tempur-Pedic pillow is a great option for you. Allow yourself a few days to get used to the feeling of this pillow's medium support. After a while, the pillow will adjust to your body's specific movements and shape, and you'll begin to notice how wonderful it is to have a soft, supportive pillow that brings you alignment and just the right support.

 

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Choosing the Correct Pillow Size

When it comes to bed pillows, there is a correct way to determine the proper size for optimal comfort at night. You may wonder how important exact dimensions are or question if the size of your bed pillows should mirror the size of your bed. It's true, knowing how much space your bed provides is important, but really, choosing a bed pillow size is mostly a personal preference. Here is a breakdown of the primary bed pillow sizes:

 

  • Standard. Your most basic pillow size. Standard-size pillows are suitable for any size bed, but keep in mind they are among the smallest bed pillows. Twin beds often use Standard-size pillows. They are the go-to if, by chance, you are shopping and do not notice many size options. Standard-size pillows are also very compact, so if you tend to move around a lot through the night, you might want to opt for a size up.
  • Super Standard. Super Standard is the size to choose if you want a little more head space than a Standard pillow provides. They are longer than their Standard cousin and won't feel as compact.
  • Queen. If you move around at night, a Queen-size pillow is for you. They are more spacious and give you more room to move around.
  • King. King-size pillows will give you a larger coverage for your back. This is important if you are sleeping on a larger bed, where a couple of smaller pillows won't be able to cover the full width of your bed.
  • Euro. These are the standard size bed pillows in most of Europe. They are mostly square-shaped, and they are ideal for a small headrest if you spend a lot of time reading in your bed.

 

Exact dimensions may vary from brand to brand, but there are general measurements you can trust. Curious about each size's specific dimensions? Look no further.

 

Pillow Size Pillow Dimensions (inches)
Standard 20 x 26
Super Standard 20 x 28
Queen 20 x 30
King 20 x 36
Euro 25 x 25

 


 

The Material

Ever heard the phrase, "it's what's inside that counts"? Well, the same rings true for pillows. Depending on what you intend to use your new pillow for, the material its made with will play a big role in how effective and helpful it will be to you.

 

Below, we've covered the most common pillow fillings you will find when you're shopping. To narrow down what's most important to you in a pillow, here are a few things to keep in mind when you're browsing:

  • Price
  • How the filler affects allergies
  • Durability and long-term usage
  • Weight/ overall feeling of firm or soft
  • Temperature regulation capabilities
  • Pain relief capabilities

 

Down

 

Credit: Ralf Geithe / Shutterstock.com

 

If you're going for an ultra-soft feeling, a down pillow will be your best friend. Filled with down, the fluffy, feathery fur underneath a bird's feathers, these pillows are both lightweight and adjust to your head's weight upon the first use. People who enjoy soft, memory foam mattresses often accompany their bed with a down pillow. If you want to purchase a down pillow but want it to be firmer, look to the fill number. The higher the filler number, the firmer the pillow will be.

 

Down pillows, unfortunately, are not ideal for allergy-prone customers and can be difficult to clean because their inner material is so fragile. For long-term usability, be sure to fluff up your down pillow at least once a week to make sure the material spreads out evenly.

 

Great for:

  • Sleepers who don't need temperature regulation
  • Sleepers who prefer softer pillows

 


 

Down Alternative

 

Credit: oykuozgu / Shutterstock.com

 

Like in the name, a down alternative pillow is made with material intended to feel similar to down, but this is a cheaper option. Often times the filler is made from polyester fiber or a very soft cotton blend. These pillows are a great alternative for people with allergies who also enjoy the feeling of soft, down material. Down alternative pillows are generally stuffed with much more material than down pillows, but they also tend to fight temperature better.

 

The downside to down alternative is the level of quality. Simply put, they probably won't last as long as their genuine counterparts. If your body is super sensitive to pain, a down alternative pillow may not be for you. They can sometime feel too stiff, especially if you're accustomed to sleeping on very soft bed pillows.

 

Great for:

  • Allergy-prone sleepers
  • Bargain shoppers who want the down feeling

 


 

Feathers

 

Credit: images and videos / Shutterstock.com

 

Feather-filled pillows will have a much different feeling than down pillows, although sometimes these pillows have a bit of down material added to them. The feathers, which mainly come from ducks and geese, will make the pillow feel very breathable, almost to the point that you feel as if you're sleeping on a cloud. Plus, they hardly absorb any heat, which is good news for sleepers who often wake up in a sweat.

 

To increase the lifespan of your feather pillow, be sure to shake it back into its original shape after multiple uses. Make it a part of your laundry routine as an easy reminder. If you notice a feather or two sticking through the fabric every once in a while, take note that it may be time to replace the pillow. The more feathers the pillow loses, the less support it will have.

 

Great for:

  • A combination of soft and firm support
  • Using as throw pillows
  • Sleepers who get hot through the night

 


 

Water

Credit: Zodar / Shutterstock.com

 

Water pillows, as we've mentioned above, are often created with multiple layers of different materials. Usually, the bottom layer contains a valve where you add the water, while the top layer(s) is made with a shape-conforming foam or a blend of polyester fiber. Water pillows also typically have an insulation level to keep the water from breaking through.  Some brands allow you to control the amount of filling in your pillow with a zippered portion where you can insert the filler. You can usually adjust the amount of water in an individual water pillow, which is great when it comes to reaching your preferred level of firmness.

 

Great for:

  • Sleepers who are particular about their pillow's firmness level
  • People who need pain relief
  • Side, stomach and back sleepers
  • An alternative to memory foam or latex pillows

 


 

Latex

 

Credit: NESPIX / Shutterstock.com

 

Latex, which comes from the sap in rubber trees, is an important component in pillows if you're prioritizing pain-relief. Similar to memory foam pillows, latex pillows work to target pressure points and alleviate the soreness surrounding those points. They do this by not totally conforming to every single movement and shape of your body. They're often expensive, though.

 

Latex pillows are usually very firm and do not obtain much of your body's heat, so if you'd prefer a soft pillow, a latex pillow is not for you. One concern people often have with latex pillows is that they give off a rubbery smell. This can be remedied with the proper pillowcase, though, and usually disappears after multiple uses. One really great thing about these pillows? They don't need constant fluffing and last a long time.

 

Great for:

  • Sleepers who want a firm, non-conforming pillow
  • People who need pain relief
  • Sleepers who get hot through the night

 


 

Memory Foam

 

Credit: Ivelin / Shutterstock.com

 

Everyone's heard of memory foam. It's perhaps the most coveted pillow type on our list for light sleepers because of the way it conforms to your individual body shape. For sleepers who desire an extremely supportive surface for their neck, shoulders and head, a memory foam pillow is the right choice.

 

Made from viscoeleastic foam, memory foam pillows can be very helpful for people who experience pain that keeps them up at night. They work to prevent you from feeling like you're sinking in too much softness, all while shaping around your body to form a comfortable backing. Some memory foam pillows are made with multiple layers of different foam, depending on the level of firmness the pillow is trying to achieve.

 

Great for:

  • Sleepers who want a shape-conforming pillow
  • People who need pain relief
  • Sleepers looking for a long-term bed pillow

 

 


 

FAQ About Pillows

If you're still unsure about which type of pillow(s) to buy for your bed, no problem. We'll answer some of the most basic questions about pillows so you can find the best kind that matches your sleeping needs.

 

What are the best bed pillows?

The best bed pillow will depend on your individual preferences. There are multiple different brands and types of pillows, but there are a few for the most common uses. In general:

  • If you want a pillow that will adjust to your head's weight and shape as you sleep, opt for a Tempur-Pedic pillow. These pillows often take a few days to get used to, but once they adjust to your body's shape, you'll likely find a new level of sleeping comfort you've never felt before.
  • If you prefer a firmer surface to rest your head on, try a water pillow. There are even pillows specifically designed for side sleepers, who often spend a good portion of their night tossing and turning in bed.
  • If you need full-body support, a body pillow can help you out. Body pillows are meant to take up much more space, but they surround the majority of your body and can help relieve pain. Wedge pillows are another great option for targeted pain relief.
  • If you study or read in bed frequently, a husband pillow can improve your posture.

 

How many pillows should be on a bed?

The answer to this questions will again depend on what kind of pillow you purchase and what size bed you sleep in. If you buy a wedge pillow, you only need one, but if you're buying a regular bed pillow, you may want to layer two together so your head is elevated while you sleep. Some people enjoy sleeping with a pillow in their arms. For these instances, you should buy a body pillow.

 

What are the most comfortable pillows?

Comfort is key when it comes to buying bedding supplies, including pillows. You want to make sure you aren't waking up with a headache each morning. To best suit your needs, first determine if you'd prefer to sleep on a firm pillow or a pillow that feels more like a cloud.

 

Bed pillows come in all different sizes and levels of firmness, so check the individual pillow's packaging for specific details. If you enjoy a mix of firm and soft, then look for a medium-support pillow or buy one firm pillow and one soft one and layer the two.

 

Can bed bugs live in your pillow?

Unfortunately, the short answer is yes, bed bugs can find their way to your pillow. It's important to take care of your bedding to avoid this problem because they can also reach your mattress and box spring if you have one. To prevent bed bugs from gathering in your sleeping space, there are a few precautions you can take. They include:

 

  • Washing your sheets every 1-2 weeks
  • Flipping and/or vacuuming your mattress every couple of months
  • Washing your pillows every few months
  • Replacing your pillows every year or two

 


 

See also:

 

Disclaimers
Disclaimers: Statements have not been evaluated by the FDA and are not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease or health condition. Always check with the manufacturer to ensure that the pillows you’re buying are the material that they’re labeled as. At the time of writing, prices and ratings are correct and products are in stock at Amazon. The views and opinions expressed in this article are those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect the official policy or position of the site owner or any brands and companies mentioned here. This article is purely for reference purposes and does not constitute professional advice and may not be reflective of the best choice for your unique situation. This site strives to provide as much accurate information as possible; however, sometimes products, prices, and other details are subject to change. Therefore, this site does not verify for the accuracy of the information presented in this article. This site does not assume any liability for any sort of damages arising from your use of this site and any third party content and services.