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Best Pillows of 2021

Lara Vargas

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With getting quality sleep being such an important factor in living a healthy life, bedding is constantly reinvented and improved. Still, knowing what products work best for your needs is a challenge. Especially, when it comes to pillows.

New pillows come out every year. So, what is the best and newest pillow out there? Unlike the ‘80’s traditional pillow, pillows now come in different shapes, thicknesses, materials, and firmness levels. We have become more educated in sleep patterns and what comforts we need to enhance our rest at night.

Here at Savvy Sleeper, we hope to be a resourceful guide on the best quality bedding available. So, without further ado, here is all you need to know about what types of pillows are available and our top pillow suggestions.

Best Pillows of 2021

Below you’ll find our 10 Best Pillows of 2021. We will go into depth to give you greater insight into these pillows. We will also talk about the different pillow filling technologies that are available.

If you’re looking for a review on a particular pillow, fill free to skip to that section.

PillowHighlightsPrice
BEST PILLOW OF 2021Amerisleep Comfort Classic PillowCertiPUR-US® certified, with a highly breathable open-cell structure and made in the USA.
MOST DYNAMIC PILLOWAmerisleep Flex Pillow
Flex PillowAmerisleep
Adjustable loft thanks to the pillows hundreds of MicroFlex cushions.
BEST 2-IN-1 PILLOWAmerisleep Dual Comfort PillowFlippable design with a soft and firm side; well-suited for side and back sleepers.
$130-150Buy Now
BEST COOLING PILLOWZoma PillowBreathable, adaptable MicroCushions™ contour to your head and neck, offering comfort to any position.
BEST BUDGET PILLOWVaya PillowPlush, pressure-relieving Vaya Foam Blend resists flattening.
Beckham Hotel Collection Gel Pillow
Beckham Hotel
Collection
Gel Pillow
Super plush gel material that is dust mite and mildew resistant
$34.99
Coop Home Goods Original
Coop Home
Goods
Original
Shredded memory foam conforms to your head and rated as being a very comfortable pillow
$60
DreamNorth Premium Gel Pillow Loft
DreamNorthPremium Gel
Pillow Loft
Allergen-free and dirt resistant.
$59.99
Continental Bedding Premium Goose Down Pillow
Continental
Bedding
Premium
Good Down
Pillow
Unmatched softness and hypoallergenic.
$179.99
Purple Pillow
PurplePurple Pillow
Gives optimal neck support and designed to keep you cool at night.
$99
Hullo Pillow
HulloHullo Pillow
Environmentally friendly and provides firm support, while conforming to your head and neck.
$99
BlueWave Pillow
BlueWaveUltra-Slim
Pillow
Very slim pillow that is a great addition to every stomach, back, and side sleepers bedroom
$39.95

Best Pillow of 2021: Amerisleep Comfort Classic Pillow

amerisleep comfort classic BEST PILLOW OF 2021
Amerisleep Comfort Classic Pillow

Many of us don’t just stay in one position but move throughout the night. That’s why we like the Amerisleep Comfort Classic Pillow, which adapts to movements.

Best pillow features
  • Ventilated Bio-Pur® fill naturally cooler than traditionally memory foam.
  • Bio-Pur® fill responds to sleeper's movements within seconds.
  • Plant-based chemicals part of recipe used to make Bio-Pur® foam.
Recommended for...
  • Sleepers looking for a light and responsive memory foam pillow.
  • People who want a nice thick pillow that's 6 inches tall.
  • Shoppers looking for a pillow backed by a generous warranty.

When looking for a proper pillow, it’s important to consider comfort as well as support. Some pillows will feel comfortable but won’t provide the support necessary throughout the night. This can lead to a sore neck, a misaligned spine, tossing and turning, and more.

The general rule of thumb: side sleepers prefer a thicker, firmer pillow. This allows their head to be properly supported and their spine to be straight. Back and stomach sleepers prefer a thinner, softer pillow. This allows stomach and back sleepers to keep their spine straight. If they had a thicker or firmer pillow, it would push their head up, bending their neck, resulting in discomfort.

But what if you are not just one kind of sleeper? Most people are combination sleepers or, at the very least, start in one position as they fall asleep and end up in another. This is why we like Amerisleep’s Comfort Classic Pillow. By making a pillow with highly-responsive, open-cell memory foam, Amerisleep designed a pillow that adapts to your sleeping position throughout the night.

Most Dynamic Pillow: Amerisleep Flex Pillow

Amerisleep-Flex-Pillow MOST DYNAMIC PILLOW
Amerisleep Flex Pillow

The Amerisleep Flex Pillow is a flexible pillow, as you might have guessed. It’s a good option for people who switch positions as they sleep.

Best pillow features
  • Air easily slips around the MicroFlex cushions filling the pillow, wicking away collected heat.
  • Shredded memory foam fill yields to a sleeper's neck and head.
  • MicroFlex cushions can fluffed back up in seconds, ensuring the pillow doesn't flatten.
Recommended for...
  • Combination sleepers looking for a flexible pillow.
  • Sleepers who want a durable pillow they can quickly fluff back into shape.

While the Comfort Classic Pillow is a good choice for a combination sleeper, Amerisleep’s Flex Pillow might just be the better one. The Flex Pillow is filled with hundreds of MicroFlex cushions, pieces of shredded memory foam that contour to your neck and head when you lie down. The fill is adjustable, giving you the freedom to fluff it up as high as it will go or push it down so your neck isn’t pushed too far forward.

This adaptability is why Amerisleep recommends the pillow to combination sleepers. The pillow can provide the support and comfort required by any and all sleep styles.

Of course, you don’t have to just take our word for it. Amerisleep offers a 100-night sleep trial where you can try the Flex Pillow out at home. The pillow also includes the protection of a 10-year warranty.

Best 2-In-1 Pillow: Amerisleep Dual Comfort

Amerisleep Dual Comfort Pillow BEST 2-IN-1 PILLOW
Amerisleep Dual Comfort

The Amerisleep Dual Comfort provides for back and side sleepers in a unique fashion, with a soft and firm side suited for each.

Best pillow features
  • The soft side offers conforming cushion for the head and neck.
  • Breathable Bio-Pur® material stays cool no matter which side you choose.
  • Bio-Pur® is an eco-friendly foam, with plant-based chemicals used in its production.
Recommended for...
  • Side and back sleepers interested in a quality pillow.
  • People who want to keep a universal pillow on hand for guests.
  • People unsure if they prefer a cradling feel or firm support in a pillow.

Are you uncertain if a firm or soft pillow is better for you? With the Amerisleep Dual Comfort Pillow, you don’t have to make a decision. One side provides plush cushion, while the other feels lightly firm for neck support.

The soft side is recommended by Amerisleep for back sleepers, while the firm side is better suited for side sleepers. You also have a choice of a low or mid-loft. The low-loft option is 5 inches tall, while the mid-loft pillow has an extra inch.

The Dual Comfort Pillow is backed by a 10-year warranty.

Best Cooling Pillow: Zoma Pillow

zoma pillow BEST COOLING PILLOW
Zoma Pillow

The Zoma Pillow is another memory foam pillow that you can fluff up or flatten as you please, ensuring that it suits  a wide range of sleepers.

Best pillow features
  • Shredded foam fill molds to a sleeper in every position.
  • Foam pieces enable air to flow freely throughout the pillow.
  • MicroCushions™ repel bacteria and dust mites, providing your head with a pristine pillow.
Recommended for...
  • Active and inactive people looking for a comfy, durable pillow.
  • People with high body temperatures seeking an airy pillow for a cool night's rest.

The makers of the Zoma Pillow focused on breathability and adaptability. You can personalize your comfort thanks to the hundreds of  MicroCushions™ inside. The Zoma Pillow is suitable for any sleep position because of its adjustability.

MicroCushions™ are hypoallergenic foam pieces that resist germs and dust mites, giving air plenty of space to flow through the pillow and remove heat and moisture. This design promotes a cool and clean night of sleep.

You can fluff it up as you would a down pillow, though you won’t need to do so too often as the pillow resists flattening. The Zoma Pillow is also easy to clean, just toss it in the washer on a gentle cycle.

Best Budget Pillow: Vaya Pillow

Vaya pillow BEST BUDGET PILLOW
Vaya Pillow

If you’re a bargain hunter searching for an affordable pillow that will still last you quite a while, then we suggest trying the relatively new Vaya Pillow.

Best pillow features
  • Foam blend molds to a sleeper as they lie down.
  • Airy foam fill encourages air circulation for a cool night's rest.
  • Reasonably priced pillow offers lasting quality backed by an extensive warranty.
Recommended for...
  • Budget shoppers looking for a quality conforming pillow.
  • People who want to upgrade a queen or king mattress with a new pair of pillows.

The Vaya Pillow provides sleepers with pure comfort at an affordable price. The Vaya Blend Foam inside is a plush material that contours to your head and neck for pressure relief. The foam’s design promotes air circulation, and it’s wrapped in a perforated cover that stays cool as you sleep.

We love the budget-friendly nature of the Vaya Pillow. It’s mid-range price tag keeps the pillow accessible, while its materials are sturdy and durable enough to provide years of comfortable sleep. It’s one of our top pillow recommendations when it comes to getting your money’s worth.

Shoppers can save a further 15 percent if they buy two Vaya Pillows instead of just one. If you need to replace the pillows on a king or queen size mattress, this deal is an affordable way to do so.

Beckham Hotel Collection Gel Pillow

Beckham Hotel Collection Gel Pillow BECKHAM HOTEL COLLECTION GEL PILLOW
Beckham Hotel Collection Gel Pillow

If you’re ever woken up because your pillow moved out from under you, Beckham Hotel Collection’s no-shift design can handily solve that problem.

Best pillow features
  • Company guarantees the pillow will not stain or fade.
  • Gel fibers keep cool and encourage uninterrupted sleep.
  • Chemical-free pillow repels mildew, mold, and dust mites.
Recommended for...
  • People interested in a no-slip pillow that stays in place as you sleep.
  • People with breathing difficulties looking for a supportive pillow.

This gel fiber pillow has resistance to mildew, mold, and dust mites. They are also chemical and allergen free. It’s fantastic for those with respiratory issues. Beckham’s super plush material has a no shift construction. This means the pillow will not slip out from under you. They also guarantee their pillow will not stain or fade over time.

Coop Home Goods: The Original

Coop Home Goods: The Original COOP HOME GOODS THE ORIGINAL
Coop Home Goods: The Original

The original Coop Home Goods pillow is filled with shredded foam, a breathable and adaptable fill that’s well-matched to a variety of sleepers.

Best pillow features
  • Fluff up the pillow as needed to support your sleeping style.
  • Shredded memory foam promotes heat dispersion.
  • CertiPUR-US and GREENGUARD GOLD certified pillow filling.
Recommended for...
  • Sleepers looking for a foam pillow they can adjust to their style.
  • People who want the durability of a pillow you can fluff back into shape.

Shredded memory foam fills this pillow. The material provides the sleeper with the right balance in supporting the head and neck and comfort for your sleeping style. One thing to keep in mind is the pillow filling is CertiPUR-US and GREENGUARD GOLD certified. This means this pillow is made without harmful chemicals.

The case the pillow comes with is breathable and removable. This will help you keep your pillow clean.

DreamNorth Premium Gel Pillow Loft

DreamNorth Premium Gel Pillow Loft DREAMNORTH PREMIUM GEL PILLOW LOFT
DreamNorth Premium Gel Pillow Loft

Reviewers have compared lying on this pillow to sleeping on a cloud, excellent for anyone who wants to upgrade their sleep.

Best pillow features
  • Gels promote a cool sleeping surface.
  • Cloud-like feel ensures a sleeper's comfort.
  • Pillow keeps out allergens and pests.
Recommended for...
  • Hot sleepers hunting for a cool mid-priced pillow.
  • Allergy sufferers looking for a hypoallergenic pillow.

This premium gel pillow is allergen-free and dirt resistant. Dust mites, mold, and mildew will not be able to get into this pillow. Customers say it’s so comfortable it’s like laying your head on a cloud. This ultra-soft pillow is meant to maximize the comfort of your sleep.

Continental Bedding 100% Premium White Goose Down Luxury

Continental Bedding 100% Premium White Goose Down Luxury CONTINENTAL BEDDING 100% PREMIUM WHITE GOOSE DOWN LUXURY
Continental Bedding 100% Premium White Goose Down Luxury

Down pillows are often thought of as the classiest kind of pillow. If you’re interested in owning one, we recommend Continental Bedding’s premium pillow.

Best pillow features
  • Down filling promotes airflow for a cool pillow.
  • Soft down conforms to the head and neck for custom comfort.
  • Pillow can be fluffed up to regain its shape indefinitely.
Recommended for...
  • Shoppers willing to invest in a genuine down pillow.
  • People allergic to synthetic materials.
  • Sleepers of all styles.

When you think of luxury pillows, goose down pillows likely come to mind. Continental Bedding took one of the most coveted fills for bedding and put it into a well-crafted casing. This pillow is the perfect height for back, stomach, and side sleepers. Clean goose down clusters that are tightly packed into the casing, make this pillow hypoallergenic.

Purple Pillow

Purple Pillow PURPLE PILLOW
Purple Pillow

The Purple Pillow contains the same exclusive grid-like comfort material that made their mattresses popular, encouraging a durable pillow that snaps back into shape.

Best pillow features
  • The grid-like fill inside the pillow has numerous square channels for air to slip through.
  • The grid inside the pillow flexes with weight, molding to the head and neck.
  • The Purple® pillow resists flattening for a durable pillow.
Recommended for...
  • Sleepers interested in a pillow with a unique design.
  • Hot sleepers who need a cooling pillow to sleep well at night.

Purple made a name for itself for their funny commercials which challenged the mattress industry and for their unique hyper-elastic polymer or “purple” material. This material is designed to take the pressure off of you. Purple makes three pillows: the Purple® Plush Pillow, the Harmony Pillow, and the original Purple® pillow. We are recommending you consider the Purple® pillow which features the same unique technology found in their mattresses.

The point of the Purple® pillow is to support your head and neck without losing its shape. What’s more, Purple’s use of their Smart Comfort Grid in this promotes for air flow, which dissipates body heat and leads to a cool nights rest.

Hullo

hullo pillow HULLO
Hullo

While feather and down pillows are common choices for a natural pillow, buckwheat pillow are rising in popularity. The Hullo pillow allows you to add and remove buckwheat hulls for a custom loft.

Best pillow features
  • Air circulates around the buckwheat hulls, maintaining a cool surface temperature.
  • Firm yet flexible fill supports a wide range of sleeping styles.
  • Buckwheat hulls are an organic, sustainable, and cruelty-free pillow fill.
Recommended for...
  • Eco-conscious shoppers looking for a natural pillow that's harvested humanely and sustainably.
  • Hot sleepers looking for an organic cooling pillow.

Buckwheat pillows are a fantastic option if you’re looking for a truly natural and organic pillow. The Hullo pillow allows you to adjust the pillow to your needs. Need it thicker? Add more buckwheat fill. Need it thinner? Remove buckwheat fill.

Buckwheat hulls firmly support the head and neck in a way that surpasses traditional pillow fillings, such as down or foam. The buckwheat husks allow air to flow through them, which prevents heat build up. For those of you who are looking for a natural filling in your pillow, this pillow is a good option.

Bluewave Ultra Slim Gel Infused Memory Foam

Bluewave Ultra Slim Gel Infused Memory Foam BLUEWAVE ULTRA SLIM GEL INFUSED MEMORY FOAM
Bluewave Ultra Slim Gel Infused Memory Foam

If you’re a stomach or back sleeper prone to sleeping hot or waking up with a sore neck, it might be prudent for you to try Bluewave’s thin gel foam pillow.

Best pillow feature
  • Slim design ensures the neck and head isn't lifted too high, misaligning the spine.
  • Gel memory foam maintains a cool surface for your head, aided by ventilation holes.
  • Partly made with rayon made from bamboo fibers.
Recommended for...
  • People with naturally hot body temperatures looking for a cooling pillow.
  • Back and stomach sleepers looking for a thin pillow.

This pillow stands only 2.5 to 2.75 inches tall. But don’t let its appearance fool you. It’s designed to be the best pillow for stomach and back sleepers. How did they do this? By making one side flat and the other rounded, they personalized the two sides of the pillow to ensure the neck and head are always supported.

Temperature regulated gel infused memory foam stops you from sleeping hot. Bluewave also added ventilation holes to increase air flow through the pillow.

Types of Pillows Fillings

Feather

Pillows filled with this stuffing are comfortably soft, while still providing a good amount of support. Coming from the backs and wings of geese and ducks, these pillows contain small and curled feathers work to keep its shape and structure after extended use. This type of pillow tends to be on the firmer side. Due to the insulating nature of the feathers, there is an increased risk of feather pillows sleeping hot. This pillow may not work if you don’t want to have to fluff your pillow throughout the night or if you are concerned about allergies.

Down

True down is from the undercoating of a bird. Located under the feathers near the skin in the chest region of geese, ducks, and swans these soft fibers, a make a lightweight pillow. More cushy than firm.

The nature of this natural fiber makes this pillow hard to clean and, like feathers, increase the risk of allergy concerns. Down pillows will also need fluffing as it tends to fall flat.

If you want something a little more cost effective and easily managed, consider Synthetic Down. In this pillow, fluffy polyester mimics true down pillows. Making it a better choice for those with allergies. It’s also better on the budget and much easier to keep clean.

Be sure to keep a look out for the true down to feature ratio in this pillow. To drive down the price, many manufacturers add features. This means a true down pillow can be very pricey.

Memory Foam

Memory foam pillows revolutionized the pillow industry in how they material contoured to the sleeper’s head. They can bounce back with varying speeds and come in various shapes. Memory foam holds a constant shape. There is no need for fluffing and there are no issues with the pillow lumping. This material is durable, meant to last for years. It’s fantastic for relieving back and neck pain and addressing other sleep issues.

The downsides are that this pillow can smell of the chemicals it’s made from. This pillow is also way too firm for those who sleep on their stomachs.

Microbead

If you’re a traveler, you probably familiar with this type of pillow filling. Microbeads are typically in travel neck pillows. The pillow is on the firm side but the beads to have a squishy-slippery feel to them.

This pillow is very supportive and, like memory foam, molds to the curves of your neck and head. The beads allow air to flow through the pillow.

Natural Fibers

For those who are looking for environmentally friendly options, you should know that there are tons of pillows that are available to you. The following pillows are some of the more common natural fiber pillows.

Buckwheat

Buckwheat pillows have been in use in Asia for generations. They’re filled with husks of buckwheat seeds. Although it may not seem like the most ideal choice for bedding, it does have many qualities that modern bedding possesses. Husks provide breathability. They are hypoallergenic and they conform to your head and neck. This is important to achieve an aligned spine during sleep.

On the flip side, the seed husks are noisy from rubbing together. This will also mean the pillow will ‘crunch’ when you lay down on it. The buckwheat pillow is too hard for stomach sleepers and is much heavier than other pillows.

Kapok Fiber

Kapok Fiber is another option for those looking for natural fibers in their pillows. Kapok is a fluffy material that comes from the inside of a seed pod from the Ceiba tree. Kapok is hypoallergenic and mold and mildew resistant.

For those of you who love the feel of down, this is a great replacement due to its buoyant nature. Although, just with all natural fibers, this filling needs fluffing. This filling is on the more costly side.

Cotton

Cotton bedding is practical. When thinking of cotton bedding, we usually think of the cotton pillowcase that keeps the filling inside or of bed sheets. Even though this option isn’t the most popular, it still has beneficial qualities. Cotton filling is mostly good for those with allergies. It is firmer than down. SO, this option would be best for side and back sleepers.

On the other hand, cotton needs cleaning on a frequent schedule. It will get lumpy eventually and does not do a good job of supporting your head and neck while you sleep.

Gel

Gel fillings keep the pillow cool as a sleeper sleeps all night long. The filling keeps the pillow from flattening out; however, it can mold into any shape the sleeper finds will give them more comfort. This pillow is another one you can count among the hypoallergenic. Gel is often combined with other fillings such as memory foam to give a sleeper more stability.
This pillow is not a good fit for all sleepers. It is best for side or back sleepers.

Frequently Asked Questions

Is sleeping with two pillows bad for your neck?

Many experts recommend sleeping with only one pillow under your head. You’re more likely to toss and turn if your sleep on two or more pillows, and you may also raise your neck out of a healthy alignment. Instead of using two pillows, try one thick pillow for a good night’s rest.

Is using a pillow bad for you?

Sleeping on a pillow is an excellent way to keep your neck aligned with your spine as you sleep. Without a pillow supporting muscles and relieving pressure points, you would be more likely to wake up with a stiff or sore neck. Just make sure that the pillow is a suitable loft for your sleeping position.

For Further Reading:

Now that you have a general idea of what you are looking for in a pillow, you can make an informed decision and hopefully start sleeping better sooner rather than later. If interested in other sleep health topics, we have dozens of other articles, including an article on finding the best mattress protector and an article on finding the best mattress for you.

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