The appropriate pillow may significantly impact how well you sleep and probably won't wake up with aches and pains. Pillows are meant to prop up your head, neck, hip, and shoulders to help you sleep straighter. Your unique demands, tastes, and sleeping position all play a role in the ideal pillow for you. In other words, the support you need in a pillow depends on how you choose to sleep.
Spinal alignment is vital to having excellent posture and being healthy overall. A decent cushion maintains the perfect alignment of your head, neck, and spine while it performs its function. This relieves strain on your body and helps to avoid neck discomfort.
When choosing a luxury pillow, several things must be considered, including size, form, and materials. However, the ultimate objective is finding the best pillow in the UK that makes you feel cosy and promotes peaceful sleep. We go through things to think about when selecting a pillow and how to test one to see whether it's good for you.
Why Is A Quality Pillow Essential For A Comfortable Night's Sleep?
Since they reduce stress on the body's pressure points, pillows are crucial to any good bedtime routine. Because we spend so much time sleeping, it's safe to assume that we also spend a significant portion of our lives resting our heads on pillows. Put another way, your pillow is like a bed for your noggin.
A good pillow, duvet and a firm mattress are necessary for maintaining the correct position of your head, neck, shoulders, and hips as you sleep. All of this makes it possible for you to wind down and get some good sleep, making you feel revitalised and rejuvenated when you wake up. You may have trouble falling asleep or wake up with a sore neck and back if your upper body is not adequately supported while you sleep.
How To Choose The Right Pillow For Different Sleeping Positions?
Your preferred sleeping posture should be taken into account while selecting a pillow. A person's spine and the amount of support required for their head and neck when sleeping are both affected by whether they sleep on their back, side, or stomach. A pillow's size, height, and hardness may be chosen or altered to match your sleep position.
The Back Sleeper
If your preferred sleeping position is on your back, select a pillow that conforms to the shape of your neck. One choice is a cervical or bounce-back pillow with a taller bottom third and dips down towards the middle, where your head rests. Typical decorative pillows of medium to thin height also provide enough head support without altering the angle of your neck.
Moreover, back sleepers need a medium-firm pillow that enables the head to align with the spine. Also, it keeps the pillow from flattening out while you're sleeping. Think about using a memory foam pillow, which will conform to the contour of your head and neck.
The Side Sleeper
Most individuals prefer to sleep on their sides, either flat or in the foetal position. Side sleepers need a pillow with more firmness and height support than back or stomach sleepers. Get a pillow with 4 to 6 inches of height if you like to sleep on your side since this may assist in keeping your ears in line with your shoulders. When you're sleeping, your neck won't have to hold up your body, and you'll wake up with better posture thanks to this position. Body pillows, which may support the pelvis and hips, are another best option for side sleepers.
For side sleepers, choosing moderate to heavy firmness might be advantageous. Fill materials like buckwheat hulls, latex foam, and silk are known to tend to be firmer, but feather pillows often have a softer texture unless they are packed very firmly.
The Stomach Sleeper
If they want to keep their spine correctly aligned when they sleep on their stomach, they may need to consider which sections of their bodies require support. Stress on the spine or the muscles in the back and shoulders might result from sleeping on one's stomach. Experts sometimes advise avoiding stomach sleeping for persons with back trouble.
But, if you like to sleep on your stomach, a softer pillow with a lower height could be your most comfortable choice. Unlike other materials, down and feather fill is often softer and may be compacted to a comfortable height.
A body pillow is a great investment if you toss and turn throughout the night, sleeping on your stomach, side, or with your arms curled below your chest. Despite its superficial resemblance to the stomach resting position, this posture actually facilitates a more natural rotation of the head and neck, bringing them into line with the hips and shoulders.
The Combination Sleepers
Combination sleepers have more complicated demands. Consider the positions you go to sleep and wake up in before searching for a loft, material, and firmness that would accommodate you. Depending on whether you switch from side to back, side to belly, or turn totally from your back to a prone sleeping position, that may be challenging.
Pillows like latex pillow, which has supportive interior chambers with a plush outside, might be a nice compromise. Another worth looking into is adjustable pillows, which let you change the filling location on the pillow as required and adjust the filling quantity over time.
Types Of Pillows
Memory Foam Pillows
Pillows from memory foam may be made from a single chunk or many smaller pieces. It may be modified to provide neck support or to swivel to follow the contours of the sleeper's body. Memory foam may make it more difficult to remain cool since it tends to be thicker and less porous than other materials.
A duck feather or goose undercoat is used to make down-fill pillows. Down is a very supple material that flattens quickly. A down pillow may thus need regular fluffing to be comfortable, even if it may provide a low loft profile for individuals who don't require much support.
Both natural and synthetic latex may be made from tree sap. Similar to memory foam, it may come in one large piece or be divided into several little pieces. When pressed, latex immediately assumes its previous form and might be heavier and firmer.
Polyester Or Synthetic Pillows
Polyester pillow inserts resemble cotton in appearance. It is the most popular and least costly kind of cushion fill. Nevertheless, those with specific allergies may avoid synthetic pillow fillings like polyester, which dust mites enjoy residing in.
Dry buckwheat seeds are used to fill pillows. This filler tends to be quite solid and may mould itself to the neck and head form. Moreover, buckwheat is typically more effective for preserving excellent body heat.
Pillows made from bamboo are becoming more popular due to their antimicrobial and humidity properties. Although many bamboo pillows consist of crushed foam inside with a bamboo viscose exterior, you get the benefits of a shredded memory foam pillow with the soothing qualities of bamboo.
Long, narrow pillows are called body pillows. To alleviate strain and align the hips and spine when sleeping on one's side, most people prefer to use them to prop up one of their legs. While their name would lead one to believe they are for the body, many people put them under their arms or heads for additional comfort as they sleep.
Furthermore, inherently hypoallergenic, cotton pillows in the UK are also fungal and dust mite resistant. They tend to be rigid and flat, so they are ideal for those who suffer from allergies. Cotton pillows have been losing ground to newer synthetic fibres like memory foam. Yet, cotton is a common material for pillows, and it has certain advantages, particularly for those allergic to synthetic materials. Also, you can easily keep your cotton pillow clean by washing it regularly.
Top Tips - What To Look For In A Quality Pillow?
To ensure you make the right choice for your needs, there are many factors to consider when choosing a pillow.
It is vital to have a pillow that is the right size so that you can sleep well. It looks nice and offers support regardless of how much you move while you sleep when the pillow matches the size of your bed. The standard, king and super-king pillow sizes are the three most popular. Standard bed sizes are taken into consideration while making bed pillows. For instance, a king-size pillow is 20 inches by 36 inches; thus, two king-size pillows will fit a king bed with a 72-inch width.
The pillows should be put on a level surface. It should be compressed with your hand until it is half as thick as before. A hard pillow will demand more tremendous pressure than a soft one. The hardness of a pillow will indicate how much support it will likely provide for your head and neck.
A pillow might lose its form if constructed with several little bits of material inside instead of one big pillow. Fluff the pillow to check whether it takes on its original form as a test. Generally speaking, a pillow with an even form and content is more pleasant for sleep.
If you suffer from allergies, consider selecting a hypoallergenic pillow made from memory foam, latex, or a down replacement, as these materials are less likely to cause an allergic response.
Consider investing in a high-quality bed or throw pillows with a long lifetime and materials that will endure for many years. Check the manufacturer's guarantee to ensure you are purchasing high-quality goods.
Your head and neck will remain neutral while you sleep, reducing tension and soreness in your neck, shoulders, and back. Choose a pillow for the bed that will fully cover your neck and skull.
Moreover, a bedroom pillow should be cosy to hold. If you want a soft or quilted pillow, choose one that is pleasant to lay on. Some individuals may want a pillow with a movable loft to alter the height to their liking.
Choose a pillow that has excellent stitching all over it. This means less damage occurs on the throw pillows or bed pillows during their lifetime.
While selecting a pillow, consider your budget since pillows might range in price. But remember that superior quality does not necessarily indicate a larger price. Choose a pillow that is both functional and cheap or affordable.
Pillow Maintenance And Care
How To Clean Different Types Of Pillows?
Here, we go through how to wash and dry a few typical pillows.
Cleaning Method - Feathers Or Down Pillows
Down pillows may be machine-washed at a warm temperature and a gentle cycle using a light powder detergent. Washing in a washing machine without an agitator is preferable since liquid detergents may leave a sticky residue on the cloth surface. To avoid overburdening, stack two pillows vertically in the washing machine.
Drying: Pillows made of down or feathers may be air-dried naturally or dried using the no-heat air-dry option in your dryer. Keep two new tennis balls in the dryer with the pillows to break up clumps and minimise clumping. Pillows must be thoroughly dried to avoid the formation of mould and mildew.
Cleaning Method - Down Alternative Or Polyester Pillows
Lapping microfiber or down alternative pillows in a gentle washing machine cycle is possible using hot water and a softener.
Drying: Use a clothesline to dry your polyester pillows or a low-heat setting in the dryer. Compared to all other cushion varieties, polyester pillows dry quickly.
Cleaning Method - Memory Foam Pillows
The filling within memory foam pillows may be damaged by washing; thus, washing is not recommended. But your memory foam pillows may still be cleaned. Using the upholstery brush attachment, hoover both sides of your pillow. Spot-cleaning any stains with a cloth soaked in a mild detergent is an option.
Drying: Your memory foam cushion may air dry on the clothesline. You may air out your memory foam pillows in the sun for a few hours every three to six months, even if you can't wash them. Your pillows are germ-free because the sun's intense heat destroys bacteria.
Cleaning Method - Latex Pillows
The texture of latex foam may be damaged by washing; hence latex pillows cannot be cleaned. All stains on latex cushions should be spot cleaned.
Drying: Your latex cushions should air dry away from the sun. UV radiation from the sun may degrade latex foam and cause harm.
Cleaning Method - Buckwheat Pillows
In a buckwheat pillow, avoid washing the buckwheat hulls. Wash the cover alone. The hulls won't function as a filler if they become wet. When you wash and dry the cover, you may place the hulls in a plastic bag. There may be a mess, but it will be worth it if you require a fresh pillow.
Drying: Let the buckwheat hulls out in the sun to eliminate the smell brought on by moisture.
Cleaning Method - Bamboo Pillows
It is possible to gently clean bamboo pillows in the washing machine using a light detergent. Washing them in cold water is preferable to avoid shrinking and filling damage. Avoid using fabric softeners or bleach since they may harm bamboo fibres.
Drying: Put your bamboo cushion in the dryer on low or no heat to dry it. If the weather allows, you may also hang it outdoors to air dry.
Cleaning Method - Cotton Pillows
Cotton pillows may be gently cleaned in a washing machine with moderate detergent. Pillows may be washed in cold or warm water, but not with bleach or linen softeners since these will weaken the pillow's fill. Two pillows should be washed together to stay balanced in the washer.
Drying: Dryers with low or no heat settings may be used to dry cotton cushions. To avoid clumping while the pillow is drying, fluff it often. You could also hang it to dry in the open air if you'd like.
Cleaning Method - Body Pillows
Body pillows in a washing machine may often be cleaned using a gentle cycle and a light detergent. Do not use bleach or softeners, and wash in hot water. Be careful to remove the cover from your body pillow and wash it separately if it has one. And for more specific stain removal, you can try a damp cloth and some gentle soap.
Drying: Always use the dryer's low or medium heat level while drying a body pillow. To avoid clumping while it is drying, be careful to fluff it often. If you want, you may dry it outside in the fresh air.
Ways For Increasing The Life Of Pillows
- Not all pillows can be washed in a machine. Read the fabric cleaning and washing directions on your cushions or the original box before using any fabric.
- Whenever you wash a pillow, ensure it is scorched before putting it back on your bed.
- If your pillows smell, spot-clean them with vinegar or baking soda. Do this right away to avoid the odour becoming worse.
- Regularly fluff your pillows to maintain them in good condition.
- Dust mites may be removed from cushions without washing if you just let them air out properly. Just let them hang for a few hours in the sun. Latex pillows should not, however, be air dried in the sun since this might harm them.
Indeed, a seemingly limitless supply of pillows is available, but if you know what to look for, this may work to your advantage. If you want to get a good night's sleep and feel refreshed and energised when you wake up, using a quality pillow is essential. A cushion out there may provide the ideal support and comfort for your requirements, regardless of whether you like to sleep on your back, stomach, or side. Consider material, firmness, and breathability when choosing the best pillow and any particular health issues you may have, such as allergies or neck problems. Moreover, don't hesitate to test various possibilities before settling on the ideal cushion. Use the appropriate one to improve sleep and have beautiful dreams every night.
The most crucial thing to remember is to maintain a good sleeping position; when you've done that, you may investigate all the various functions your pillow can do.
So, go on and sleep well!
Frequently Asked Questions
How do I know which pillow is best for me?
The ideal pillow should support the spine's natural curve and maintain the neck, head, and spine in a neutral posture as you sleep.
What size is a standard pillow in the UK?
A standard-size pillow is 50cm by 75cm. A king-size pillow, often known as a super king pillow, is 50 cm by 90 cm. The two most popular pillow sizes in the UK are these rectangular ones.
Does your choice of pillow depend on your mattress?
Absolutely. To guarantee optimal alignment, the hardness of your mattress and pillow should cooperate. Instead of only searching for the proper pillow, considering your mattress is also a good idea. Top factors influencing how you choose a pillow with a mattress: Your body will sink into a softer mattress, resulting in bad posture and neck aches. You could discover that a softer pillow is more pleasant since a hard mattress won't conform to your body shape.
How frequently should I replace my pillow?
Even if you've discovered the ideal cushion, it cannot endure indefinitely. Depending on the quality and kind of material, pillows should be changed every two years, unlike mattresses, which may endure for eight years or more.
How often should you change your pillowcases?
The pillowcase partially absorbs the sweat, dead skin, and pollen that collect on the pillow. This extends the time between washings and the pillow's overall life. Washing your pillowcases at least once every week is something we advise.
Can I wash a pillow in the washing machine?
Your pillows may be washed in different ways depending on the fillings inside of them. Not all pillows can be hand-washed or cleaned in a machine. It may be necessary to dry-clean or spot-clean some items. Before cleaning your pillows, we advise reading the care instructions.
Your bed pillow's machine-washability will also depend on its size. The washing machine in a house may need help to accommodate giant queen and king-size pillows.
How do you clean pillow stains?
Use a clean cotton cloth, ideally white, dampened with water and mild detergent to spot-clean your pillow. The area of the cushion that requires cleaning should be softly rubbed. Be careful to gently push into the pillow material while rubbing to allow the stain to infiltrate. Moreover, a portable hoover may remove hairs or lint from the cushion.
How can I make my pillow fluffy?
A cushion that has dried completely feels soft and fluffy. Even if you don't wash your pillows often, moisture from body oils or perspiration may sometimes build up, giving them a flat feeling. If you dry it naturally, your pillow will get fluffier or use a dryer in a low or no heat setting.
A cushion may also be fluffed by hand. To disperse the stuffing more equally, gently shake pillows made of feather, down, or polyester, or press the sides together. It simply takes a few minutes to fluff your pillows. While making your bed in the morning, adding it as one of the finishing touches is easy.
How many pillows should you use when sleeping?
It mostly depends on a personal choice of how many pillows to use when sleeping. But, to preserve the spine's natural posture and prevent elevating the head too high, doctors suggest using only 1 pillow while you sleep. Use softer pillows if you want to sleep with 2 pillows to prevent adding too much height behind your head.
How can I tell if my pillow is too soft or extra firm?
Take note of how your head and neck feel first thing in the morning to tell whether your pillow is too hard or too soft. Although a pillow that is too soft cannot provide adequate support, a decorative bed pillow that is too firm might result in stiffness and pain in the neck and shoulders. Your head and neck should align with the rest of your spine with the help of your aesthetic pillows.
How do solid and shredded memory foam pillows differ?
The degree of customization that each kind of memory foam cushion offers is what sets them apart from one another. Although solid memory foam pillows are meant to adapt automatically to your shape, shredded memory foam pillows are composed of tiny bits of foam that may be changed and moulded to suit your head and neck. Solid memory foam pillows provide incredible support and pressure relief, whereas memory foam pillows with shreds tend to be more breathable and adaptable.
How can I choose the best pillow for a baby?
Consider a child's age and preferred sleeping position when selecting a pillow. Although older kids may gain from more supporting pillows that help correct their spine, younger children may require flatter cushions to minimize neck strain. Moreover, search for hypoallergenic materials that are simple to clean if your youngster is prone to allergies or asthma.