Best Pillows in 2018 – Buyer’s Guide and Top Picks

If you want to get enough good night’s rest, it is crucial to have a great pillow. Pillows come in different shapes and sizes, and it is crucial to take into consideration a few critical factors before shopping for a pillow. Our buying guide based on extensive research and analysis can help you make the right decision.

Written by:


, Sleep Researcher
Last Updated: Thu, July 4, 2019
Fact checked by:

Marko Jevtic

, Sleep Specialist

We all know that a good night’s sleep can’t be achieved without a pillow. However, we can’t choose just any pillow, we need to find the best one to fit our needs and preferences. How do we even choose the best pillow?

Pillows come in all shapes and forms, you just need to find the one that is comfortable for you. Do you prefer a big, fluffy pillow or a pillow that will support your neck? Can this pillow be filled with feathers, or are you allergic? Some of the factors that will help you find the perfect pillow are your head size, weight, the position that you sleep in and your shoulder width. Once you determine these, you should consider which material to choose, how moldable the pillow should be, how high and, of course, to set a budget.

Choosing the right pillow can be daunting, this is why we are going to go over some of the factors that we have determined people look to while choosing a pillow. Our list is based on verified user experience and thorough market research.

Need help choosing a pillow? Read our comprehensive buying guide and find our top 11 picks based on our own testing and customer experience.


The Eden from Coop Home Goods

One of the reasons the Eden made it onto this list is because of its gel-infused foam and a cover that is made from bamboo rayon. This means it is much colder than some of the other models on this list. Some of the reviewers noted that foam pillows lose their shape pretty fast, but the Eden does not. It has a polyester lining, that is machine washable and easy to maintain.


The other reason that the Eden is mentioned here is the adjustable loft. Customers can add or remove the height of the pillow, and the firmness, so that it fits their needs perfectly. This may result in a decrease in neck or shoulder pain.

You can find this product at Coop Home Goods. They offer a bundle deal; two mattress sheets and two pillows, in any dimension for a lower price. They also provide a 100-day sleep warranty, as we all know, you can not check the quality of a pillow or a mattress if you have not spent a couple of nights on it.

This pillow is good for all types of sleepers, from side sleepers to stomach sleepers. Also, all weight groups can rest easy with this pick. It can relieve neck pain and shoulder issues. The best part is the customizable loft, which works best for the sleeper who changes their pillow height preference.


TEMPUR-Symphony Pillow from Tempur-Pedic

There are some sleepers that prefer to change the way they sleep from night tonight. Sometimes you prefer a flat surface and sometimes not. This Tempur-Pedic Pillow can meet the needs of these sleepers as it offers two flappable surfaces with two different feels. Side one is smooth and even, with distinct points where pressure needs to be applied, while side two is prompted up for those nights where you need more head and shoulder support.


The Tempur-Symphony is a bit on the pricey side, but it makes up for it with its durability. Its foam filling is more than capable of lasting a number of seasons and it never loses its shape. With this in mind, it is also quite moldable which is great for those restless nights.

Tempur-Pedic has shipping, free of charge in the U.S. and this pillow has a warranty of five years, which is above average.

This pillow works for all sleepers’ groups (side sleepers, back sleepers, stomach sleepers), but it is more recommended for light or average weight sleeper groups. Most of all, it is recommended for those who like to sleep on both sides of the pillow, and where both sides have a great design and those who want to relieve neck and shoulder pain.


Easy Breather from Nest Bedding

Nest Bedding Easy Breather is a foam pillow with the adjustable loft, similar to the Eden, mentioned in the earlier text. The customizable loft is recommended for neck and shoulder pain for those side sleepers that need a change in height on a nightly basis.


The Easy Breather will keep you cool, with breathable Tencel® lyocell cover and the air flow from the interior. Smugglers can rest easy, as this pillow is moldable and can return to its original form after sleep and the snuggles. The Easy Breather presses tightly to the head and neck to release pains, and pressure as they accrue.

Nest Bedding has free shipping in the U.S. and the pillow is has a  trial of a 100-nights and a warranty of two years, which is more than enough to ensure a quality product.

The Easy Breather is recommended for back and side sleepers, as per the customizable loft. It is best for light to average weight sleepers. A bigger budget is needed for this product but it is highly recommended to those who sleep hot and still didn’t found the right cooling pillow.


Z Zoned Talalay Latex from Malouf

The Z Zoned Talalay Latex pillow from Malouf is a part of a new series The Zoned have called the Z series. It is made from a one piece of latex, and it comes in two options: Firm and Soft. The material is designed to relieve neck pain and to push on pressure points of the head.


Being hot is never good while you sleep, so the Talalay has a cooling system which prevents sweating during the night. The cooling system consists of the cover and the airflow designed to cool. The cover is made from materials designed to chill which are a breathable blend of rayon from bamboo and part polyester. An average lifespan of a latex pillow, in years, is three, which puts the Talalay in the ‘’more durable latex pillow’’ category.

The Zoned Talalay Latex can be shipped anywhere inside the U.S. and it has a warranty of five years.

The Talalay is recommended to all types of sleepers (side sleepers, back sleepers, stomach sleepers) and for all weight groups. Notably, it is best for those who get hot when they sleep and for those with neck and shoulder problems.


Hullo from Hulltex LLC

Some of the more eco-friendly materials can also make some great pillows. Buckwheat pillows fall into this category and they are, looking at other pillow categories like latex and memory foam models, an alternative. They also provide release from pressure and conform closely. The Hullo from the store Hulltex LLC has a fully adjustable loft so that the customer can subjectively remove or add however they see fit. If, however, you run out of the filling, Hulltex LLC can provide more.


As is typical for this type of pillow filling, the Hullo’s interior will keep you quite cool during the night. It is sold with a cotton twill cover, which is also organic, which is machine washable. One of the other perks of this pillow is that you never need to clean the hulls.

For those with a bigger budget, The Hullo pillow can be ordered in two sizes, a King and a Standard. The first one is $149 and the second option is $99. Shipping is free and covers the territories in the U.S. and the pillow has a sixty-night trial.

Back and side sleepers are recommended to try this pillow, and also sleepers in the average to heavyweight groups. It can relieve neck and shoulder pain as well as keep you cool.


Luxe Pillow

As there are many sleepers that prefer a soft pillow, we have the Luxe pillow. It is filled with down, which means it has the little soft feathers of geese and ducks. The Luxe is divided into three parts. The middle parts consist of waterfowl feathers, and it has additional two chambers on the side. They are filled with goose down fill. The cover is designed to be machine washable and made of cotton, as well as not to let any material out of the pillow. The piped edges of the pillow ensure this.


As most pillows filled with down, the height of the pillow is medium, and it is considered to be soft. If you enjoy sinking into your pillow at night and having it support your shoulders and neck that way, this is the pillow for you. You would think that it is not cooling if it is so soft, but that is not true. The cotton flow is well-designed to allow excellent air flow. Lastly, one of the bigger benefits of getting this pillow is that it is eco-friendly.

The Luxe can be bought in a Standard and a King size. The sleep trial is one hundred days and the company offer returns to all customers, and shipping covered by them.

This pillow is eco-friendly and ensures you always wake up warmed up and feeling cozy. It is good for the sleepers in the average or lightweight groups and for back and side sleepers.


Leesa Hybrid from Leesa

The Leesa Hybrid is another example of a pillow that can be used in a different way on two sides. One side is covered and filled with a down-like material and the other side is padded with a cooling gel pad and it’s flat. This way, sleepers can adjust between the cooling side and the flat side which is good for releasing neck pain. Above all, it is an adjustable and reversible hybrid pillow. The loft of the pillow can also be customized to the needs of the sleeper.


One of the pluses this hybrid has it that it can be cleaned much quicker than a regular down pillow. It can be washed in a washing machine which makes it really easy to take care of. When it comes to firmness, it has two settings – soft and firm, which are set by tackling gel part of the pillow.

It may cost a little bit more, but the Leesa is known for their good customer reviews and free shipping to anywhere in the U.S. It has a warranty of three years and a trial period of one hundred nights sleep.

If you are a side sleeper, back sleeper or a combination sleeper this pillow will work for you. If you like to customize your pillow often, choosing this model is also a good idea. At the end, we all know that if a pillow does not hurt your shoulders and neck, it is a winner.


Organic Cotton/PLA Pillow from Naturepedic

Cotton is a fabric that is bellowed by almost everyone. We choose our underwear to be cotton so why should our pillows be different. It is breathable and lightweight which makes it perfect for a cool night’s sleep. Organic Cotton from Naturepedic is a perfect example of a pillow that will keep you at an average temperature all night. The pillow contains cotton batting that is plant-based and organic. It is much more eco-friendly than latex or polyester pillows. It has well-designed airflow which allows easy temperature-control.


This pillow can’t be put in the firm or soft category, it is somewhere in between. It has 2 thickness options so that no one is unable to find the height they prefer in a pillow. One of the advantages of buying this pillow is that it is machine washable as a whole, which means you don’t need to take it apart before washing it.

This pillow may be costlier but considering all the benefits and being eco-friendly, this is a reasonable price. It has a trial period of thirty days.

Side sleepers and back sleepers say they prefer this pillow in the reviews and according to our research, most sleepers that like this pillow are in the average or lightweight category. The pillow keeps you cool during the entire night, so it is suitable if you are a hot sleeper. It’s 100% organic and very durable.


MyPillow Premium

Polyfoam has been on the rise since its invention. It is good for matrices, so why not pillows?  As it fits us perfectly night in and night out, it was a logical progression of the manufacturing industry. And the best part of the polyform is that it adapts to the sleeper’s height preference, and this is where Premium from My Pillow comes in. It comes in four colored lofts which are Green, White, Blue and Yellow.


As we all want a cool pillow, and not in a sense that it is popular in high school, the Premium has a cover made of cotton which is in a shape of a ring, and also an interior that allows air to flow freely. As polyfoam is quite moldable, but this does not bounce back as quickly as it could, especially if it is wet, simply place it in the dryer or on a radiator and wait 20 mins for it to maintain its original shape.

And yet it still gets better, with the price of the Premium MyPillow coming in at about 20$, it has a sixty-day trail and a warranty of ten years.

It works best for people who sleep on the side and on the back, also it doesn’t matter what weight you have, it comforts all the groups. Shoulder pain and neck pain can be prevented by using this pillow, as well as people that usually feel warm when they sleep.


Layla Pillow

Memory foam can be shredded and not just in one piece. This type of filling is reviewed as one of the best for more than your regular pressure relief pillow. The Layla pillow is filled with this type of filling but it has an upper hand on other pillows with the same filling. It has implemented fibers of a tree caller Kapok, to provide more of a cushioning feel. It has a polyester cover filled with copper strains, which helps increase blood flow. If this sounds like this cover will make you sweat, but that is not correct, as these materials distribute temperature well which means you will be cool as a cucumber.


If you are a snuggler, this pillow will fit you perfectly as it is extremely moldable. The material blend is more odor resistant than other materials and it doesn’t need to be cleaned as often.

Layla covers shipping all over U.S., Canada, and Alaska. Although the shipping to Canada and Alasca is 20$, shipping in the U.S. is free. It has a sleep trail of one hundred and twenty days and a warranty of five years.

If you are a combination sleeper or sleep on your back or side, this pillow would work great. It also accommodates light and average weight sleepers and those who are warm while they sleep.


Snuggle-Pedic Bamboo from Relief Mart

Snuggle-Pedic Bamboo is best known for keeping you cool and not overheating, even compared to other pillows filled with shredded foam. The cover is made from bamboo rayon, which is a known material for temperature control. The airflow in the interior is well made, and it helps distribute body heat while you sleep.


The loft is customizable, which means it can accommodate all the height preferences. Although, when you receive the pillow, it is sealed, which means if you want to adjust the loft you need to send it back to the store so that they can fix it and send it back to you. This action is unlimited and free of charge to all who have purchased the Snuggle-Pedic. It is relatively cheap for a pillow who offers so much, and it is designed to help you prevent pain in the shoulders and neck.

The shipping doesn’t cost a thing, and it is available to all the states in the U.S. There is a hundred- and twenty-night test and a warranty of twenty years. Wow, now that is a time period that can cover a big part of a lifetime.

All sleepers say that this pillow has worked in their favor, no matter the position they sleep in or their weight. Also, it has been noted that this pillow helps with pain relief and temperature control while you sleep. Both of which are important while choosing a pillow.


What Do You Need to Know About Pillows?

As we all know, pillows are an essential part of our lives. We sit on them, lean on them and most importantly we sleep on them. A pillow is generally what we think of when going to bed. But how much does a shape and size of pillow influence our sleep? A lot actually. There is a fairytale in which a princess could not sleep as there was a pea under her mattress, and this may sound ridiculous in reality, but getting a pillow that does not fit our standards may just be that little detail that keeps us from falling asleep.

There are several factors that make up a pillow. The first factor is the material that the pillow is made from. It can be a blend of a number of materials, like polyester, down, latex, cotton or foam. It can also be buckwheat as well as other organic eco-friendly options. All of these materials can make or break a preference towards a pillow as the material is connected with other factors, such as the thickness of the pillow, also known as loft. The loft is critical in deciding which pillow to choose, as a too high or too low loft can cause shoulder, back and head pain.

Another factor that has an influence on whether a particular pillow will match your preferences or not is the size. Pillows come in six different sizes which we will explore in the further text.

Let us dive into the wondrous world of pillows and see what it has to offer. This text will explore all the options from which to choose from and provide you with guidelines on how to pick what is right for you.

Pillow Sizes

Ok, so are there more than one size that I can get at the store? Yes. When you are shopping for a pillow there is no ‘’one size fits all’’. There are six types of sizes for pillows: Body Pillow, Euro, King, Queen, Super Standard, and Standard. All of them have a pillowcase size that corresponds with their size, and it is usually one or two inches wider than the pillow itself.

Body Pillows are mostly targeted at sleepers that like to hold something when they sleep. These are best if they are made of a material that cools and that is moldable. They are also great to keep your body on one side, which comes in handy for side sleepers and women that are pregnant.

Euro pillows can come in different sizes actually, but there is a general guideline that there are square shaped. This makes it perfect for reading a book in bed or looking at a film on a tablet. It is called the Euro as people in Europe mostly use this type of pillow.

The King size pillow is like a King size mattress. It is bigger and good for people that sleep in all types of positions during the night. There is extra room on both sides. This makes this pillow a great bed rest for people that sit up in bed.

The Queen size is also like the Queen size mattress. It is not as big as the King but it is bigger than the Super Standard. There is more than enough room for your head and for tossing and turning during the night.

Super Standard pillows are more in line with the standard size but it is longer. This is good for using the pillow as bedrest and if you are not a still sleeper.

Standard is the pillow you see in all the sores. It is the most sold and the pillow made most often. They are compact and the shortest of all the options. Sometimes the Euro can be smaller but as we noted, the standard is not usually square. Usually, they are the least expensive version of all the pillow sizes. So, if you have a twin or a full-size mattress, one of these would work just fine. But for a bigger mattress as a King or a Queen, you would need two to cover the range on the bed.

Pillow Loft

is the filling that is inside the pillow. It determines a lot of factors like thickness, height, and softness of a pillow. All of these weigh in on how good you can sleep on it and how comfortable it is for you. While picking a pillow, note that there are different types of the loft. There are the Low loft pillows not that thick, three inches or less. There are Medium loft pillows that are in between five and three inches. And lastly, there are high loft pillows that have a thickness higher than five inches.

As is life, most of the sleepers prefer a middle-sized loft, but there are always exceptions, and these exceptions have a right to chose the pillow they desire.

If you are not sure which loft fits you just right, giving you ultimately a better sleep dynamic, please see some of the following factors that will guide you to a good decision:

All of these are categories that overlap with one another. One of the most important ways to see which loft you prefer is to see how much space you have in between you and your bed. If you are not sure, there are options to buy a pillow that is customizable, which will allow you to experiment and find the perfect amount of loft for you. Finding the perfect amount of loft will help you with any shoulder pain, back pain, and even snoring.

Types of pillows

As we have gone through all the shapes and sizes of pillows, let’s see what is the stuff that makes them pillows, or professionally said, what is the material that makes them up. Down below we will list some of the most commonly sold pillow types, their pros and cons, and a short description to help you chose your perfect pillow.

Polyfoam and polyester
As you can see from the name, the polyester pillow is filled with fibers made from polyester. The loft most commonly ranges from a mid to a high loft, but there are stores that offer a loft made of polyester that is lower. The benefits of this pillow are that they are usually not pricy. An average model is between 9$ to 16$ and they can be found in almost all the stores that have pillows. Another benefit is that, as polyester is a material that is not organic, it is hypoallergenic, which makes it perfect for those sleepers that have trouble with allergies during sleep. Benefit number three is that it is hard to get dirty and it usually has no odor. Lastly, they are low maintenance, which means there is little effort to fluff them and shake them to get them back in their original form. Some of the cons of this pillow are that they are not as durable as some of the other options, also they are not suited for those who tend to sleep hot. They absorb a lot of temperatures and they are reported as being heavy and quite noisy.

Organic and natural
Pillows made from natural materials with no man-made components are considered to be ‘’natural or organic’’. Cotton is one of these materials, as well as silk, wool or any of these mixes. There is also latex that is organic, which makes it a part of this group of pillows. Some of the benefits of these type of pillows are that they have a reputation of being extremely soft and comfortable. Man-made materials don’t have the same texture as these types of materials which gives them an edge in being known as more supportive and comfier. Secondly, these materials tend to have better air circulation which gives them the option of temperature control and cooling. On the other hand, getting a pillow that is made of natural materials is not cheap. They can go up to 150$, and even 500$. As well as being expensive, they are harder to find than polyester pillows which are available almost everywhere.

Memory foam
As we all love something to caress us and makes us feel like it was made just for us, memory foam was invented. It comforts us by making an impression of our head and keeping it at a certain level above the mattress. There are two kinds of memory foam, a pillow filled with foam fibers that are shredded and the other type is a pillow made from one piece of foam. There are all types of lofts available for this type of pillow, also all sizes. The pros of this pillow are that it gives us support and firmness at the same time, which has been linked to the release of pressure and pain. Also, this type of pillow is great for side sleepers and back sleepers, as they provide the support needed. They are easy to get and make almost zero noise. The bad news is that it can get quite filled with smells, for up to a couple of days, when you unbox the pillow. As well as this, these pillows can get expensive, hitting the price to about 65$.

Latex is an organic material, found in nature, mostly in tree bark. It is made as such to be comfortable and fluffy. Like memory foam, it clings close to the head and shoulders, providing pressure relief and comfort. The loft on these pillows can be high or in the middle, also they have wary from soft to thick. Pros are that these types of pillows are linked to the higher percent of pain resolution as per their supporting abilities. One of the best properties of this pillow is that it keeps it shape for a long, long time. This means that it is more durable than some of the other types, as well as being quiet and not letting sound escape their realm. But where there is an up, there is a down, and the downside is that these pillows are costlier, coming at 59$ a piece. Also, they are considered to be flexible and have a bounce to them, so if you prefer a soft pillow that doesn’t move much, this may bother you. Lastly, sometimes they can smell of rubber, being that latex is made in a similar way.

Feather and down are not the same material. The down is actually below the feathers, making the barrier between the skin and feathers. These feathers are mostly duck and goose. Sometimes, the feathers are mixed with a small portion of down, but mostly not. Due to the material, these pillows are mostly a lower height. There are benefits to this pillow, as it is quite soft, light and flexible. They are cooling as feather are designed not to absorb hot temperatures. Being that this is a natural resource, these pillows usually have a longer lifespan than other types of pillows as well as being less costly than down filled pillows. Although, as these are feathers crammed into a fabric cover, they may get out sometimes and scratch a sleeper that is on it. There is a distinct crunch when you move it and there is a specific smell that is linked to a feather filling. Lastly, shaping the pillow may take more effort than usual as feathers are not that moldable.

Plumage that is collected from geese and ducks is called down. It is the layer of small features that is beneath the bigger feathers. It is known for being soft and comfortable. Seventy-five percent of down is needed in order to put a pillow in the ‘’down’’ group. Other twenty-five percents can be a feather filling or other. The ups of the down pillow are as stated that is comfortable for most sleepers as per the combination of flexibility, curve to the head and the lightness of it. They can get warm but this may be a plus in winter and in the colder parts of the world. They last for a long time and they don’t need to be molded to be comfy. The cons of this type of pillow are that they are costly, up to two hundred dollars and they are mostly not high, so they can’t fit all types of sleepers. Sometimes, they are needed to be adjusted which means they need to be shaken to give you the relaxation you need. Lastly, as they are a natural ingredient, they are not antimicrobial which means that sleepers who are prone to allergies would be best to avoid this type of pillow.

Down Alternatives
As down can be fabricated, we have down alternatives. They are actually polyester which is made to be like down. Most reviews say that there is no notable difference in the comfort of the two, but there are some benefits to the alternatives that down pillows don’t have, such as that they are hypoallergenic. Also, they are not as expensive as real down pillows, but they still mimics the softness, break-in period and flexibility of pillows made with real down. However, the alternative down is not as long lasting as the real thing, and it can increase the pressure on sensitive areas such as neck. Another downside is that it can lose its shape easily and it requires shaping and fluffing on a daily basis.

Buckwheat is a filling that is like grain but more of the outer shell of a grain seed. It is hollow and organic. Five to ten pounds are in one pillow of buckwheat. Using this type of pillow has several advantages, such as great support for the head and shoulders, and possible customization so that it can fit all types of sleepers. These pillows provide relief from pain and aches, and they don’t retain body temperature. However, they can cost up to a hundred dollars per piece and are quite heavy, which can be a problem for some customers. Side sleepers can find it difficult to adjust these pillows because of their density.


Looking over all these types of pillows, their shapes, sizes, weights etc. let’s see how they compare to each other.
When you look at the average price of a pillow, there is a notable difference in the organic and non-organic material prices. The cheapest is polyester, which starts at about 9$ and goes to 16$, next is a down alternative, which also being man-made ranges between 20$ to 30$. The most expensive are organic down which is up to a 100$ and pillows made from natural and organic materials which can be more than 150$.
The next category is durability. Buckwheat, feather and down are rated as most durable, where memory foam, natural and organic ingredients, and down alternative fall into the average range of durability. The lowest score of durability has polyester which might be linked to the price point of this pillow.

Support is the third factor that we should consider. Rated as the best are buckwheat, latex, memory foam and organic materials. After that, a category lower are the down pillows and feather pillows. Lastly, rated as ok are the down alternative and polyester.

The fourth category is the smell. The best rated are the man-made materials like polyester and down alternative, while the worst rated are feather and memory foam.

Category number five is temperature control. The pillows that excel here are those made with down buckwheat, down alternative, feather, latex and natural ingredients. The worst rated are memory foam pillows.

The weight of a pillow is the next criteria. The best performers were down and down alternative, while the lowest scores were given to buckwheat, latex and memory foam.

Next, we have rated maintenance as a category in which the best were buckwheat, latex and memory foam and the worst were feathers and polyester.
Let’s note the following as well. The pillows that are washable are down alternative and polyester, while memory foam and feathers can be washed sometimes. Buckwheat, down, latex and natural ingredients are not washable.
Adjustable loft comes for buckwheat, and sometimes for memory foam and natural ingredients. It is not adjustable for down, down alternative, feathers, latex, and polyester.
While the availability of the buckwheat, down alternative, feather, latex and natural ingredient pillows is limited, the availability of the down, memory foam and polyester is quite wide.


In conclusion:

Let’s recap all the points that need to be checked before spending our hard-earned cash on a pillow.
What size of the pillow do you need? Look at your mattress and your sleeping habits. Do you sleep in one spot or do you toss and turn during the night? Determine the size of the pillow that would suit you the best based on these things.
How high does your pillow need to be? Do you sleep on your stomach, back, side, or are you a combination sleeper? Which weight category do you fall into? Also, don’t forget to ask yourself if you need the pillow to sit up, lean on and read a book etc.
Finally, what type of pillow do you need? Do you have any allergies? are you always hot in bed? Do you need a firm or a soft pillow? Do you have any pain in your neck, shoulders, or back? Always take the durability, mobility and the warranty of the product into consideration and see if it matches your expectations.
Hope this guide will help you find your next pillow. There are more articles that can help you get acquainted with some of the best types of pillows here.


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