Mattresses

9 Best Pillows of 2021, According to Experts

Like mattresses, pillows play a major role in how well you sleep and finding the right one can be challenging. A good pillow is a key to getting restful sleep, but finding the best one is no simple task. An uncomfortable pillow (or, even just a pillow that’s not right for your sleeping style) can, quite literally, ruin your night. Shoppers today have a lot to consider in terms of composition and fill, thickness, durability, temperature regulation, and pain relief.

 With so many options to choose from, it all comes down to your personal preferences for material and your sleep position. Side sleepers should choose a thick, firm pillow, stomach sleepers need a soft, thinner one and back sleepers need something in between. The goal is to have your head and neck aligned so that when you’re lying down, your neck isn’t tilting in any direction.

When testing pillows, we check how easy they are to clean and whether they’ll actually hold up to laundering. We also look at how well they fit into a pillowcase and how they keep their shape after a weight is placed on them all night. Then we have real consumer testers try them out for in-depth feedback on things like comfort, support, temperature regulation, and more.

 

Our Best Pillows for Sleeping

 

Coop Home Goods Adjustable PillowCoop Home Adjustable Pillow

 

It is one of the best pillows for Side Slippers.

An ideal balance of soft and firm, this pillow is filled with a blend of memory foam pieces and microfiber clusters that feels surprisingly supportive and plush at the same time. This construction, along with cooling gel-infused into the memory foam, enables the pillow to sleep cooler than many other memory foam pillows.

A gusset, which is a panel around the perimeter of the Eden, also promotes airflow through the pillow. The gusset adds structure to the pillow, which helps the pillow evenly support the weight.

The Eden Pillow is hypoallergenic, making it a good choice for allergy sufferers. The pillow doesn’t contain down, and it has been certified by CertiPUR-US and GREENGUARD. Coop Home Goods also notes that the Eden is dust mite resistant.

One attractive feature of Eden is its versatility when it comes to different types of sleepers. Sleepers can add or remove fill to adjust the pillow’s loft and density to fit their needs. This option makes Eden a strong choice for sleepers of all position preferences.

The Eden’s cover and liner are both unzippable, allowing customers to access the innermost part of the pillow. The pillow also comes with an extra half bag of fill. This construction allows customers to adjust the pillow’s fill levels. It’s machine washable so you can easily keep it clean, and it immediately bounced back to shape after our Lab’s pressure tests.

Coop Home Goods offers a 100-night sleep trial and a 5-year warranty on the Eden Pillow.

 

Casper PillowCasper Pillow

 

About the same number of back, side, and stomach sleepers say this pillow is just right for them.

The Casper Original Pillow is a down alternative pillow filled with polyester microfiber. It mimics the soft feel of down but doesn’t contain animal products. The pillow shares a similar construction with many down pillows in that it has a softer outer pillow surrounding a firmer core.

Although polyester microfiber feels similar to down, it doesn’t contain any feathers, making it suitable for those who avoid animal products. Casper doesn’t claim their Original pillow is hypoallergenic, but it is likely a good choice for people who experience allergy issues with down.

This pillow comes in one firmness level, which is medium-soft. Its firmness and loft make the pillow most suitable for side and back sleepers. Stomach sleepers might find that the Casper Original Pillow elevates their head too high, which can lead to neck discomfort.

The Casper Original Pillow is constructed with a gusset or a 2-inch panel that circles the outer edge of the pillow. This gusset increases the pillow’s loft and adds structure.

Due to the gusset and other aspects of the pillow’s construction, sleepers will find that the contents of the Casper Original Pillow stay put and do not shift throughout the night. Although some down and down alternative pillows can become lumpy over time, lumpiness shouldn’t be a problem with this pillow.

Casper offers a 100-night sleep trial and a 1-year limited warranty on their Original Pillow.

 

Layla Kapok PillowLayla Kapok Pillow

 

This pillow is something you have to feel to believe and it earned the highest overall rating from our consumer testers. The Layla Kapok Pillow combines shredded memory foam fill with kapok fibers. The kapok fibers are sustainably harvested from the seed pods of the kapok tree, which grows in Indonesia. These two materials come together to provide a mix of cushioning and support.

The pillow also features an innovative cover that is woven with copper fibers that are designed to draw heat away from your face and neck to prevent uncomfortable heat build-up over the course of the night. Copper is also naturally antimicrobial.

The cover also has a zippered opening so that users can remove the cover for washing. This opening also allows for loft adjustments. The pillow arrives overstuffed, which may be perfect for larger side sleepers, but those who sleep on their backs or stomachs will want to remove some fill to achieve the appropriate loft level for proper spinal alignment. This customization enables the pillow to suit a wide range of sleepers.

 

Brooklinen Down Alternative PillowBrooklinen Down Alternative Pillow

 

Brooklinen offers the Down Alternative Pillow for people who enjoy the soft cushion of a down pillow but don’t want to sleep on actual down. Whether you are vegan and avoiding animal products or dealing with allergies that make you sensitive to down, this pillow is a good option for the down feel without the feathers.

The Brooklinen Down Alternative Pillow is made in the US and sold at value prices compared to similar pillows. Brooklinen also offers discounts to customers purchasing 3 or more pillows. This pillow is constructed with a 100 percent cotton sateen shell over a polyfill interior.

The Brooklinen Down Alternative Pillow is also available in three firmness levels, which provide plenty of options for various types of sleepers.

“Plush” is the softest option. Recommended for stomach sleepers wanting to maintain spinal alignment, the Plush option prevents neck strain by allowing sleepers to sink in deeply. It’s one of the best pillows for stomach sleepers with neck pain.

The “Mid-Plush” option is a medium-soft pillow. This firmness option is ideal for back sleepers who want their head slightly elevated, but not too much.

Finally, the “Firm” pillow is the firmest version of the Brooklinen Down Alternative Pillow. This option works best for side sleepers wanting to keep their head level so they maintain spinal alignment.

 

TEMPUR-Cloud Breeze Dual Cooling PillowTEMPUR-Cloud Breeze Dual Cooling Pillow

The Tempur-Pedic TEMPUR-Cloud Dual Breeze is made of a single layer of TEMPUR material, which is a type of memory foam. Since memory foam tends to trap heat, there’s a layer of TEMPUR-Breeze Gel surrounding it, to promote cooling.

This pillow comes with the traditional memory foam feel associated with Tempur-Pedic mattresses. Sleepers can expect a highly conforming pillow that “hugs” the body. The feel of the TEMPUR-Cloud Dual Breeze differs greatly from the feel associated with down and down alternative pillows.

The TEMPUR-Cloud Dual Breeze comes in one firmness level, which is medium. This firmness level makes the pillow most suitable for side and back sleepers. Most stomach sleepers tend to prefer a thinner pillow.

The cover of the TEMPUR-Cloud Dual Breeze is removable and washable. Made of 100 percent cotton, the cover adds to the pillow’s breathability. Although the cover can be washed, the pillow’s inner contents cannot be washed.

 

SleepEasy EasySleeper PillowSleepEasy EasySleeper Pillow

 

The EasySleeper Pillow from SleepEasy helps side and back sleepers achieve proper spinal alignment, which in turn helps alleviate neck pain. The pillow is made from memory foam, which provides contouring and pressure relief. Using an ergonomic design, the pillow features contoured cut-outs to adequately support the head and neck whether you prefer to sleep on your back or your side.

The cover includes a full-length zipper, which allows you to easily remove the cover for machine washing. SleepEasy sells the pillow either alone as a single pillow, as a partner pack (two pillows), or as a family pack (four pillows). The pillow comes in one standard size.

 

SpineAlign PillowSpineAlign Pillow

 

The innovative SpineAlign Pillow is designed to alleviate aches, stiffness, and tension around the neck. Its ergonomic, asymmetrical design features two side chambers containing adaptive poly foam. The thinner side chamber is designed for people who stand at 5 feet 6 inches or shorter, while the thicker side chamber is geared toward taller people. Both of these components feature raised edges for neck support and a grooved center to cradle the head, which can be beneficial for side sleepers.

The pillow also includes a center chamber that sits lower than either side. Back sleepers can rest comfortably on this middle section. If you need to adjust how supportive the pillow feels, each chamber can be accessed using a zipper; simply reach into the chamber and manipulate the foam to make it feel thicker or flatter. The SpineAlign website features a helpful tutorial video that explains how to sleep on and adjust the pillow.

 

Pluto PillowPluto Pillow

 

The Pluto Pillow is a customizable pillow designed specifically for your needs and preferences. Every customer completes a detailed survey that includes questions about height, weight, sleep position, optimal loft, and desired feel. A pillow is then crafted based on your specific feedback. Compositions will vary, but all pillows contain at least one piece of solid adaptive polyfoam that is CertiPUR-US certified, meaning it does not contain any hazardous materials.

The cover is also made to order, and maybe quilted or smooth depending on your survey answers. The material composition of the cover also varies. According to Pluto, more than 25 different variations are available for the pillow. You can also choose between standard and king sizes.

 

Luxe PillowLuxe Pillow

 

The Luxe Pillow is constructed with down and feathers. It contains a firmer, structured core of small-game waterfowl feathers. Surrounding the core are two chambers of soft, white goose down. This construction provides a mixture of support and plushness.

Generally, down and feather pillows aren’t recommended for people with allergies. However, the Luxe Pillow is certified hypoallergenic. The down and feathers they use undergo extensive washing, so they are less likely to bother people with allergies.

Also, the Luxe Pillow comes with a high-quality pillow protector. Pillow protectors help keep pillows in good shape. They also tend to help protect sleepers from inhaling allergens that might develop in the pillow over time, such as dust mites.

The Luxe Pillow comes in one firmness level, which is medium. The loft and medium firmness of the Luxe make it a strong option for side and back sleepers. Stomach sleepers might find that this pillow is too thick or firm for their liking, however. Stomach sleepers often prefer softer, less lofted pillows that allow them to maintain spinal alignment.

 

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