Choosing the Perfect Pillow

Abi Kimble, FCHS Journalist

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After a year spent mostly at home, you may have grown to appreciate something you formerly took for granted: your pillow.

In a world where a large part of your school day may be spent on your bed, Having the right type of pillow can make a big difference in your day. Probably the most important pillows are the ones that you sleep with every night, since a good night’s sleep is important to your health and wellness. “I probably have ten pillows on my bed. I have bamboo pillows, My Pillows, a body pillow and other random pillows,” said sophomore Jake Grubbs.

So how do you find the perfect one?

Although you can find many options online, nothing beats shopping for pillows in-person. Good places to shop include a mattress store and home supply stores like Bed, Bath and Beyond. When you’re walking down the aisle and see the pillows sitting in a bin you can already envision yourself squishing them. Wherever you go, you may be best of purchasing the pillow yourself. “A pillow is something that you can’t buy for someone else; it’s a rather personal purchase. You’ll buy a new pillow and love it for a few days, then you’ll hate it, then have to start all over again,”said FCHS girls volleyball coach Christi Harlowe.

The reality is there are alot of things to consider when buying a pillow. You first need to decide if you want a traditional pillow or a new foam-type pillow. Next, you’ll want to figure out what size pillow you want or need. In addition you would want to consider the cost of the pillow. 

Size

In trying to decide the size, you will have to determine your needs. Are you just replacing an old pillow? Do you want a bigger or firmer pillow or is your pillow? Or is your current pillow just not giving your neck enough support?

Determining the size you need will depend on where and how you plan to use it. According to Amerisleep.com, the average pillow sizes are Standard (20×26), Queen (20×30), King (20×36) and Body (20×54). Typically, standard size is used on twin and full sized beds. Queen sized pillows are usually used on queen-sized beds and King pillows on King-sized beds. There are no rules to buying pillows, so you can buy any size you want. Once you find the size, you have to now find your type of pillow.

Type

With all kinds of pillows to choose from, the main two categories of pillows shown on Casper.com are filled pillows and foam pillows. 

Filled pillows consist of feather, down, cotton, bamboo and polyester fillings. These pillows are mainly for back sleepers and are lightweight and easy to mold. Each pillow has its own characteristic. Down pillows are made from the inner feathers of a goose, duck, or swan and are soft and cushiony. Feather pillows are filled with the outer bird feathers and tend to be firmer, but keep in mind that the feather quills can poke through the fabric. 

Cotton pillows are odorless, breathable and are good for people with allergies. Bamboo pillows are antimicrobial and have a shredded foam interior with a soft bamboo shell. Polyester is a man-made filling that absorbs heat and gets lumpy quickly. They may not be as comfortable, but they are more economical than the natural ones. 

Foam pillows are made from polyurethane and other chemicals to form a soft foam. There are multiple types of foam pillows including memory foam, shredded memory foam and latex pillows. Foam pillows mold to your body and work for most sleeping positions. A downside is that they often retain heat. More recently manufacturers have started adding cooling gel inserts to counteract that issue. Due to their firmness, they are not as huggable as filled pillows. 

Sometimes, you won’t know what you like until you’ve tried it. “I had a My Pillow and I hated it. It gave me headaches. I got a new bamboo pillow and I really like it,” said Grubbs.

Cost 

The cost of your pillow is going to depend on size, material, brand and quality. Looking online at various websites including Amazon, Walmart and Bed Bath and Beyond, prices range from $10 to $140 per pillow. However, don’t let price be the only thing that determines your purchase. According to Home Guides, you may be better off paying extra for a pillow that is more comfortable and will last longer. 

Whatever pillow you choose, just remember that if you sleep the average 8 hours a night, you’ll be clocking nearly 2,900 hours each year on it.