If you’ve ever had a restless night where you were up tossing and turning, you probably kept moving around your sheets and pillows. On those sleepless nights, it seems like you can’t get your bed situated just right to be comfortable. Back pain is one of the top culprits that keeps you awake at night. Having the right pillow can often mean the difference between a sleepless night and a blissful rest.
Shopping for the right pillow can be challenging. There are so many different types of pillows, each in different shapes and sizes. They come in a variety of materials and fabrics, and each promise to be the pillow you are looking for. The truth is everyone has different preferences when it comes to sleep, and rarely is there one pillow that is suited for all.
To find the perfect pillow for you, you need to consider how you prefer to sleep. Do you like firm support or a lighter, softer pillow beneath your head? Do you tend to get cold or sweat at night? These are the types of questions you need to ask yourself before swiping your credit card. You also need to consider your back problems and any recommendations from your doctor or chiropractor.
While there is no “one size fits all” pillow, finding the right one to suit your specific preferences and needs is possible. To help you in this feat, we’ve researched some of the best pillows on the market, even dozed off for a bit as we tested them out, and put together a handy shopping guide. We’re going to show you exactly what you need to consider when on the hunt to find your perfect pillow.
Discover Your Sleeping Preferences Before Shopping
It is important to know your sleeping style before you start pillow shopping. In addition to knowing your ideal sleeping temperature and your preferred level of support, it is vital that you know your most common sleeping position. The answer might not be obvious at first so feel free to recruit the help of a sleeping partner.
Everyone moves in their sleep. It is human nature to shift throughout the night, but typically most people have a favorite sleeping position. To find out yours, think about the position that you choose when first drifting to sleep as well as the position that you wake up in. Also, consult with your sleeping partner and ask what position you are most often in while fast asleep.
This is an important step in finding the perfect pillow because your preferred sleeping position can have a big impact on which pillow is right for you. Once you’ve narrowed down which is your favorite position, find it below and check out how it impacts your pillow selection.
If you prefer to sleep flat on your back, you need a pillow with enough support to keep your head aligned with your spine. Ideally, you should look for a pillow with medium firmness. One that isn’t too firm or thick that it brings your head forward, or one that is too soft where your head is too far back. Look for pillows in standard or cervical shapes made from memory foam, polyester, or buckwheat hulls.
Most people tend to sleep on one of their sides. If this is your preferred sleeping position, you’re in luck because it tends to put the least pressure on your neck and spine. To get the best sleep possible look for a plush pillow that provides support enough to your neck. A pillow with medium to a firmer level of support is best suited to this sleeping style. Any material filling is suitable for side sleepers, so feel free to browse.
For those who prefer to sleep on their stomach, you need a pillow that alleviates the strain on your neck and spine. Look for pillows that are soft and fluffy. Pillows made from down, feathers, or buckwheat hulls are best for those who sleep soundly on their stomachs throughout the night.
Consider Innovative Pillow Shapes and Sizes
Traditionally, pillows used to come in one shape and size. As time has gone on and consumers have made the importance of pillows known, new shapes and sizes have emerged on the market. Now you can buy pillows the size of your full body, ones in U-shapes to place between your limbs, and small bolsters made to support your neck.
There are also many different types of decorative throw pillows and available. Rather than overdoing it with decorative pillows, select pillowcases in attractive designs. Look for fabrics like Egyptian cotton that are comfortable and fade resistant. When it comes to pillows made for sleeping, the most popular types are the traditional, cervical, bolster, and contour pillow shapes.
Traditional pillows are rectangular in shape, and usually available in a size that matches the size of your bed: twin, full, queen, or king. Cervical pillows are hallowed out in the center and made to support your neck and spine. They are an excellent option for those who frequently suffer from back pain. Bolster pillows are cylindrical in shape and usually used to provide support for your limbs or neck while you sleep. Contour pillows are caved in the curvature of your neck and made to snugly fit around your head.
Select a Pillow Made From Your Favorite Material
One of the largest factors in pillow design comes from the materials used to manufacture it. Select your pillow’s material carefully, and use the materials suggested for your sleeping style as a good starting point. Memory foam pillows are some of the most popular on the market.
This material that was originally created by NASA conforms to your body and provides firm to medium support. While the original memory foam would get quite hot, newer pillows are gel infused to provide a cooling sensation. These pillows help relieve back pain while also providing spine alignment support. Another popular option is pillows made from shredded memory foam, that offer a more breathable option and lighter support than typical memory foam pillows.
For those who do not prefer memory foam, but like its firm support, latex pillows are another option. While not as popular in the United States, pillows made from buckwheat hulls are the preferred option in the East. This filling allows you to adjust your pillow’s shape freely and is a very breathable material, making it ideal for anyone who tends to get hot at night. If you are looking for a soft and lightweight pillow, one filled with down, feathers, or polyester is your best bet.
With this knowledge in tow, you are now ready to purchase your ideal pillow suited specifically for your needs. We’re sure this new pillow will send you on your way to many nights of blissful sleep.