When I used to fly to Japan for work, I was never able to sleep on the hotel buckwheat pillows because they were crunchy feeling, loud and "one size fits all". I definitely prefer this "American" style. It has a nice thick cover which makes it softer and much quieter and, being able to customize the amount of fill to fit your personal sleeping style, really makes all the difference! It took several adjustments before I finally got the right amount of fill, so don't give up...it may take several tries. The cover is well made and the gusseted sides keep it from going flat. The hulls are very clean...absolutely no dust...which is a real bonus for those of us with allergies. I am now sleeping more soundly, no longer waking up with a stiff neck and, I swear, I'm dreaming more! There is definitely an improvement in my quality of sleep and I have also noticed an improvement in my TMJ. If you want a soft fluffy pillow, this is not for you. But if you want a pillow that you can "customize" to properly support your head and neck, then I highly recommend this pillow.