The Best Knee Pillows for Sleep

By Sheryl Grassie

Learn how these specially shaped pillows, which are designed to go between the knees or under the knees, can relax muscles, reduce pain, and improve sleep.

How Knee Pillows Work

Knee pillows are designed to elevate the lower body and take pressure off leg, hip, and back muscles, allowing them to more fully relax. Being relaxed is a key to falling asleep and staying asleep. Knee pillows can reduce or eliminate certain kinds of pain and improve sleep overall. They are structured to support good nighttime posture and improve circulation.

Will a knee pillow work for you? Read on to see our best picks and what to consider before you purchase.


Our Favorite Knee Pillows

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ComfiLife Orthopedic Knee Pillow – Memory Foam Wedge Contour

This pillow is shaped to fit comfortably between the knees and works well for side sleepers. It is ergonomically designed to take pressure off and relieve sciatica, and hip and back pain, but may relieve pain in other parts of the body as well. It supports spinal alignment for good sleep posture and better blood flow. It is made of memory foam and will maintain its shape for years to come. The ComfiLife Orthopedic Knee Pillow has a breathable cover, which is removable for easy washing. They offer a 100% money back guarantee with no questions asked.

  • Price: $29.95
  • Size: 9.8 x 7.9 x 6.3 inches
  • Rating: 4.5 out of 5 stars, 5,583 reviews

Back Support Systems – Knee-T Medical Grade Knee Pillow for Side Sleepers

The Knee-T pillow is a physician-designed pillow for between the knees that is prescribed by thousands of doctors. It is designed to relieve pressure and improve conditions like a herniated disc, sciatica, arthritis, and back pain. It is made of polyurethane foam with a removable, washable cover, which comes in cotton or bamboo, and is hypoallergenic. This pillow also comes in different sizes to better accommodate different heights and weights, and has a strap to keep it in place. It comes with a 100% money back guarantee and a 10 year warranty. It may be covered by insurance for specific medical conditions.

  • Price: $59.95 or $74.95
  • Size: 25 x 10 x 3 inches or 26 x 10 x 3 inches
  • Rating: 3.7 out of 5 stars, 148 reviews

BeautifulLife – Half Moon Knee Pillow

Recommended by physical therapists and chiropractors, this pillow is versatile for side, back, and stomach sleepers. It is made of memory foam and is good for after surgery or during pregnancy. It can be used to target different areas of pain, and used under back, knee, or ankles. It has a washable organic cotton cover, a 100% satisfaction guarantee, and a lifetime 100% money back guarantee, no questions asked.

  • Price: $19.87, same price for either size
  • Size: 18.5″ x 8″ x 4.5″ or 20.5″ x 8″ x 4.5″
  • Rating: 4.4 out of 5 stars, 111 reviews

The Need for a Knee Pillow

I remember when I was pregnant with my first child; my doctor suggested I sleep with an additional pillow between my knees. “It will help take the pressure off your back,” she said. It worked wonders and I have slept with one ever since. And, I am not alone. Many of people now sleep with a knee pillow not just for pregnancy, but to relieve hip pain, knee pain, and back discomfort; to cushion joints, add spinal support, improve night circulation, and reduce varicose veins. These pillows support comfort and are amazing at improving sleep.

What To Consider Before You Purchase

In the ensuing years, after doctors started telling their patients to use an extra pillow, manufactures responded with all sorts of shapes and sizes of knee pillows. They come with a variety of features and in a range of prices. Here are some things to consider, so you get just the right pillow.

Sleep position

Do you sleep on your side, your back, your stomach, or a combination? Different pillows are designed specifically for different sleep positions.

Size

Some pillows come in one size, some in multiple sizes. Especially if your height or weight is above or below average, you might want to consider a knee pillow with multiple sizes.

Easy to clean

Most knee pillows have a removable and washable cover, but not all. Check to see how easily a pillow is cleaned.

Comfort

Although a brand can claim to be comfortable, comfort is fairly individual. Take a clue from your mattress and other pillows. Do you like them soft or firm? Choose accordingly.

Type of material

This can apply to both cover and pillow base. Covers come in cotton, organic cotton, bamboo and other types of materials. The pillow base is generally made of memory foam, but you may find cotton batting, buckwheat, or other materials if you look harder.

Cost

Knee pillows range in price from $5 to over $100, although most are quite affordable at around $25. Consider what you want to spend and look at the options in your price range.

Durability

Some knee pillow come with limited warranties, and some come with a lifetime warranty claiming their pillows never go flat. If durability is an issue, read the manufacturer’s specifics before purchasing.    

Strap for securing

Certain brands come with a Velcro strap to secure the pillow tightly around your leg. This can prevent the pillow from slipping out of position while sleeping. You may find it uncomfortable or appreciate the non-slip factor.

Temperature

Some people find a pillow between their knees hot for sleeping. Most pillows are designed not to be, but there are ones with gel padding on the outside to keep you cool.

Return policy

The pillow you pick might not be the right fit and you may need to return it. All of the pillows we reviewed, and most definitely our top three picks, have 100% money back guarantees. However, it never hurts to read the fine print.

Ratings

If you check sites like Amazon, products have ratings and reviews. These can be really helpful in assessing pros and cons, and getting an idea of how one pillow stacks up against another.


Summary

Any pillow between the knees can help alleviate pain. However, specially designed knee pillows seem to do a better job. They come in several shapes; hourglass for side sleepers, half-moon for versatile sleepers, and wedge shaped for back sleepers. Most are made of memory foam with washable covers, and are very reasonably priced. They support the body, allowing muscles to relax and reducing pain that can keep you awake. Overall, knee pillows help with a better night’s sleep.


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