Best Cool Gel Memory Foam Pillows

By Amanda Lasater

If you find yourself waking up at night from those dreaded night sweats, you know hot is not the most comfortable way to sleep. A good night’s sleep is hard enough to come by, and if you throw night sweats into the mix, you can kiss quality sleep goodbye. 

So, aside from forcing your sleeping partner to spend their night’s in an icebox, what else can be done to prevent overheating during sleep? Well, while breathable sheets and a cooling mattress can help, a pillow made from cool gel foam will likely be the saving grace for those of you who sleep hot. Gel-infused memory foam pillows are designed to regulate temperature and maintain a cool sleep surface throughout the night, which ultimately allows you to have a sweat-free and truly restful sleep.

The Best Cool Gel Memory Foam Pillows

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wavve

Best Overall

wavve

The cool gel memory foam pillow made by Wavve is the overall best pillow for hot sleepers thanks to its use of next-generation technology. The open-cell memory foam construction is wrapped in a highly-effective gel cooling pad. The cooling pad is covered with a very soft, skin-friendly, and breathable fabric that Wavve calls “ice fabric.” It is OEKO-TEX certified meaning that the pillow is made without any materials or substances that can be dangerous to the human body. 

Pros

  • Best cooling sensation
  • Perfect for all styles of sleeper: back, side, stomach, and combination

Cons

  • The loft is under 5 inches
  • Not machine washable
Classic Brands: Cool Gel and Memory Foam Double-Sided Pillow

Best Reversible

Classic Brands

The Classic Brands Cool Gel Pillow is a reversible pillow that provides sleepers with the best of both worlds. One side of this pillow features a cool gel layer to help you chill out on warm nights, while the other side of the pillow features a solid memory foam base that will keep you comfortable on colder nights. The cool gel layer will help dissipate heat and regulate your body temperature and the memory foam keeps your head, neck, and shoulders all in perfect alignment. This pillow has a medium-plush feel and a 5-inch loft, so it is ideal for all styles of sleeper.

 Pros

  • The cool gel layer is very effective and stays cool throughout the night
  • Mesh knit cover wicks away moisture
  • Open-cell memory foam is highly breathable

Cons

  • Heavier than some may like
  • Firm
Weekender Ventilated Gel Memory Foam Pillow

Best Budget

Weekender Ventilated Gel Memory Foam Pillow

The Weekender Gel Memory Foam Pillow features a soft, gel-infused memory foam to maintain comfort while you sleep. The gel-infused foam pillow is also ventilated using a unique hole punch design to increase ventilation, improve air circulation, and maximize temperature regulation. This pillow is the perfect choice for anyone who wants both breathability and temperature-regulating gel in their pillow, but also wants to stay on budget.  

Pros

  • Affordable
  • Unique hole punch design increases ventilation
  • Removable cover

Cons

  • Very firm
  • Stiff when you first lay down
  • Takes some working in
BedStory Memory Foam Pillow

Best for Neck and Back Pain

BedStory Memory Foam Pillow

This gel-infused cervical pillow uses high-density memory foam to contour your head and neck throughout the night and alleviate back pain. The pillow was designed to conform to your natural body shape and keep your spine in perfect alignment, all while maintaining a cool sleep surface. Thanks to the open-cell memory foam, gel-infusion, and ventilated design, the BedStory pillow ensures proper airflow throughout the night while still providing you with the pressure relief found in other memory foam pillows. 

Pros

  • Breathable tencel and polyester top pillowcase
  • Hypoallergenic inner cover expands the life of the memory foam
  • Solid foam design prevents clumping of foam

Cons

  • Some initial off-gassing
  • Not as cooling as others

Who is a Cool Gel Memory Foam Pillow Good For?

When it comes to sleep accessories, we all have our own unique needs and preferences but our experts here at Mattress Advisor have found that the following groups tend to benefit from gel pillows the most:

  • Side sleepers: Many gel memory foam pillows are orthopedic and made out of a solid piece of foam – this helps align the spine and alleviate pressure points along the back, neck, and shoulders. 
  • Allergen-sensitive sleepers: There are many types of common pillow fills that can trigger allergies. Thankfully, most gel-infused memory foam pillows are hypoallergenic.
  • Pregnant sleepers: Not only do pregnant sleepers sleep hot, but they also tend to sleep on their side, so they are the perfect candidates for cooling gel pillows.

How to Find the Best Cool Gel Memory Foam Pillow

While shopping for a new cool gel memory foam pillow, ask yourself the following questions to help narrow down your options:

  • How firm do I want my pillow? Gel memory foam pillows come in varying degrees of firmness, so you should narrow down options based on your preferred firmness level. 
  • What type of memory foam do I want? You have two options here – a solid foam pillow or one made of shredded foam. The solid foam pillow offers more pressure relief as well as closer contouring while the shredded foam pillow offers adjustable loft.  
  • Do I want a reversible design? Reversible gel memory foam pillows feature one side with gel and one side without gel and are perfect for sleepers whose preferences vary each night.
  • What is my budget? Gel memory foam pillows can range from $20 all the way to $100. Deciding on a budget ahead of time will allow you to filter out the pillows that are out of your price range. 
  • Does the manufacturer offer a sleep trial? Many manufacturers allow for a trial period to test out the new pillow. Also, check out the manufacturer’s warranty.

Frequently Asked Questions

Should I opt for traditional memory foam or shredded memory foam?

The difference between traditional and shredded memory foam is simple, yet each design provides its own benefits. Traditional memory foam pillows use a single piece of foam while shredded memory foam pillows are filled with small pieces of memory foam. Traditional memory foam pillows provide even and comfortable support by conforming to your body and eliminating pressure points. While these pillows are highly supportive, the lack of ventilation may cause the pillow to retain heat throughout the night. Shredded memory foam pillows provide you with the same support of traditional memory foam, but without the issue of overheating. Thanks to the shredded design, air circulates freely through these pillows to disperse excess heat and maintain a cool sleep surface. In addition, shredded memory foam pillows offer an adjustable loft. 

Do I want gel-infused memory foam or a layer of cool gel on top of the pillow?

In our experience, this has to do with your personal preferences. Gel-infused memory foam will keep the entire pillow cool throughout the night while a gel layer provides you with an optional gel sleep surface. The gel-infused foam helps to dissipate heat and prevent overheating. On the other hand, the gel layer is extremely cool and typically only on one side of the pillow, so it’s great for anyone who wants to switch between a cool surface and a memory foam surface during the night.

What are other ways to keep cool while I sleep?

Aside from purchasing a quality gel memory foam pillow, you can also use the following tips to put an end to those hot and sleepless nights:

  • Keep your bedroom at the optimal temperature for sleeping, between 60° and 67° Fahrenheit. 
  • Avoid caffeine, alcohol, and spicy foods before bed as these all contribute to a raised body temperature. 
  • Use natural fibers for your sheets and bedding. Natural fibers like cotton are highly breathable and will help you stay cool and dry through the night.
  • Invest in a cooling mattress. There are tons of cooling, gel-infused mattresses on the market today – check out of favorites here.

Conclusion 

Many people sleep warm, but a cooling memory foam pillow can help you wake up each day feeling refreshed, revived, and ready to take on all of life’s challenges. In fact, there is a great deal of scientific research that demonstrates we sleep better when the room and our bodies are cooler rather than warmer. Whether you suffer from night sweats or just find yourself searching for a cool spot on your pillow each night, you will love your new cool gel memory foam pillow.


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