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FAQs about Bed Pillow Firmness


Firm bed pillows on a bed

When shopping for a new bed pillow, all the options that are available might seem overwhelming. From contoured to memory foam, the market has become flooded with bed pillows for all types of sleepers. Navigating the vast jungle of bedding means looking at the material, size and firmness. If you're trying to figure out which firmness is right for you, these frequently asked questions about bed pillow firmness might help.

Pillow Firmness Questions:

  1. Which firmness is the best for back sleepers?
    The aim of a pillow is to keep your head in a neutral position while sleeping to prevent muscle strain and spinal misalignment. If you sleep on your back, you'll want to make sure your pillow isn't too firm. Firm pillows tilt your head too far forward, making neck and back pain inevitable. Look for medium firmness to ensure that your head is resting at the right angle. Regular down pillows are often too soft for back sleepers, so if you prefer a luxury bed pillow, look for a down pillow with a firm cotton or memory foam core to provide stability, or try a memory foam wedge pillow.

  2. How do I find a bed pillow suitable for side sleepers?
    Side sleepers need to make sure that the space between their head and neck is filled for a supportive night's sleep. Firm or extra-firm bed pillows are a side sleeper's best friend and will ensure that you wake up without neck pains or headaches caused by too-soft pillows. If you're a side sleeper in search of a memory foam pillow, look for foam contour pillows that cradle the neck for the best sleep possible.

  3. How do I judge the firmness of a memory foam bed pillow?
    When you're looking for a memory foam pillow, the best way to judge firmness is weight. The weight of memory foam will tell you how dense it is and how supportive it will be. In addition to firmness, look at the shape of your memory foam bed pillows. Wedge pillows are typically best for back sleepers because of their gentle incline, while contour pillows are ideal for side sleepers.

  4. When do I know my pillow has lost its firmness?
    Once a bed pillow has lost the original firmness it's no longer helping you get a restful sleep. One simple trick for figuring out if your pillow has lost its supportive properties is to fold it in half. The pillow should spring back to its original shape when released. If the pillow stays folded, it may be time to replace it.

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