5-Minute Crafts
5-Minute Crafts

3+ Tips to Choosing the Right Pillow for You

Picking the right pillow might help you relieve headaches and neck pain, improve your sleep, and allow you to wake up more refreshed every morning. 5-Minute Crafts prepared a guide for how to choose a pillow that is suitable for your needs.

Define your sleeping position.

The ideal pillow should keep your head, neck, and spine in “neutral alignment” and support the natural curvature of your spine. This means that your ears should be in line with your shoulders and your chin should be in line with your breastbone.

If you sleep on your side:

1. Pick a firm pillow that provides enough support for your neck so that it doesn’t bend to the side too much.

2. The pillow should be as thick as the distance between your ears and the outside of your shoulder. This way, it will relieve any extra pressure from your shoulders.

If you sleep on your back:

1. Use a pillow with medium firmness that won’t lose its shape by the morning.

2. Your pillow should be medium-thick, meaning that it should provide enough support for your neck and head, but not prop up your head too much.

If you sleep on your stomach:

1. It’s better to go for a softer pillow that won’t push your head up too much, creating an unnecessary curve in your neck.

2. A thin, almost flat pillow would be the best option for you. Otherwise, your head might be craned upward, causing neck pain and discomfort in your lower back.

For a healthier spine:

1. It’s better to go for a therapeutic pillow that can adjust to your sleeping position whether you like to sleep on your side or on your back.

2. A foam therapeutic pillow or a fiber neck pillow are good options for you, as they follow the contour of your body and don’t let your head sag or bend too far the other way.

Pick your pillow’s filling.

Down pillows are made of down taken from the chest area of a goose, swan, or duck while the material for feather pillows is usually taken from the back of the bird and the wings.


✅ They have a longer lifespan, meaning that they will stay supportive and keep their height for longer than synthetic fillings.

✅ They are light and soft. These qualities make them perfect for snuggling.

✅ They are breathable.

✅ They can be molded to suit your neck.


⛔ They might cause allergic reactions in people who have allergies to down and feathers.

⛔ They can get flattened quickly and need regular fluffing to keep their shape.

⛔ They need professional cleaning.

⛔ Sometimes they can be expensive.

Microfiber pillows are made of polyester and nylon that are tightly woven together.


✅ They are easy to take care of since they can be washed at home.

✅ They are hypoallergenic.

✅ They are light.

✅ They are cheap enough that it makes them affordable for everyone.


⛔ They are not as breathable as other pillows.

⛔ They have the shortest lifespan among all pillow options.

Memory foam pillows are made of viscoelastic materials that respond to changes in the pressure put on them. This means that they return to their original state when they’re not being used.


✅ They offer strong and even support for your head and neck, conforming to your individual shape. This quality can help you relieve head and neck pain.

✅ They are hypoallergenic.

✅ They are easy to take care of.

✅ They are durable and have a long lifespan.


⛔ They tend to trap body heat, so it can be too hot to sleep on them during summer.

⛔ They can be too dense and firm for some people.

⛔ They can give off chemical smells, especially when they are brand-new.

Natural latex pillows are made of the sap of the rubber tree, while synthetic latex pillows are usually man-made.


✅ They are a bit firmer than feather pillows but still comfortable.

✅ They offer even support for your neck and head and hold their shape like memory foam pillows.

✅ They are breathable and help you keep a neutral temperature all night.

✅ They can’t cause allergic reactions since they are resistant to mold and dust mites.

✅ They are extremely durable and have the longest lifespan.


⛔ They are very expensive.

⛔ Synthetic latex pillows might have an unpleasant smell.

Wool and cotton pillows are made of natural and organic materials.


✅ They are hypoallergenic and resistant to dust mites and mold.

✅ They are breathable and can help you regulate your temperature during the night, keeping you warm in the winter and cool in the summer.

✅ They wick away moisture while you sleep.

✅ They have a long lifespan.


⛔ They quickly flatten and need to be reshaped regularly.

⛔ They are heavy and might be too flat and firm for some people.

⛔ They can be expensive.

Choose your pillow’s size and shape.

1. A standard pillow measures 20 in by 26 in.

2. A super standard pillow measures 20 in by 28 in. They are usually used by people who frequently move during the night or by those who have a slightly larger head size or body weight.

3. A queen pillow measures 20 in by 30 in. They can be used by people who tend to toss and turn during the night.

4. A king pillow measures 20 in by 36 in. They usually work well with king-sized beds and larger sleepers.

5. ChooseV-shaped pillow if you suffer from neck and back pain or snoring.

6. A U-shaped pillow, or a pregnancy pillow, is meant to be hugged and will support your body in different sleeping positions.

7. A contour pillow has raised rounded edges that fit the empty space under your neck, providing extra support.

Please note: This article was updated in August 2021 to correct source material and factual inaccuracies.
5-Minute Crafts/Health/3+ Tips to Choosing the Right Pillow for You
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