Best Luxury Pillows
Swap out your lumpy old pillow for one of our dreamy luxury picks!
Jan 22nd, 2021 •
Finding the right pillow is just as important as finding the right mattress. The wrong pillow can leave you achy and sore, while the right fit keeps your neck in a neutral position all night long. The best pillows cradle your head and support your neck in your preferred sleeping position.
This list of best luxury pillows covers all budgets, fills, and forms. All of our top picks use high-quality materials and the latest technologies so you get a good night’s sleep no matter which you choose.
Top 10 Best Luxury Pillows
- Editor’s Pick – Marriott Down Alternative Pillow
- Best Down Pillow – East Coast Bedding White Goose Down Pillow
- Best Memory Foam Pillow – Snuggle-Pedic Bamboo Shredded Memory Foam Pillow
- Best Down Alternative Pillow – The Casper Pillow
- Best Pillow for Side Sleepers – FineFeather 100% Hungarian White Goose Down Pillow
- Best Hotel Pillow – Beckham Hotel Collection Gel Pillow
- Best Pillow for Stomach Sleepers – Continental Bedding P550-2-K White Goose Down Luxury Pillow
- Best Latex Pillow – Saatva Pillow
- Best Pillow for Neck Pain – Coop Home Goods Adjustable Pillow
- Best Firm Pillow – Beautyrest Extra Firm Pillow
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Marriott needs their pillows to appeal to a range of sleepers as wide as the world, so they created their Innovation Lab to test the products used in their hotels. The Marriott Down Alternative Pillow provides hotel-quality comfort at an accessible price point. Plus, it’s more eco-friendly than standard down pillows, so you can feel good about your purchase.
The Marriott Down Alternative Pillow features a cluster fiber fill wrapped in a 233 thread count woven cotton cover. The fill is a plush, durable alternative to feather down. It’s made out of 100% recycled plastic bottles that are transformed into polyester balls. Polyester fiber is responsive and comfy.
This pillow is hypoallergenic, meaning you don’t need to worry about allergic reactions while you sleep. Marriott treats their pillows with an antimicrobial compound for extra clean sleeping. Plus, it’s machine washable. A set of 2 standard-sized pillows is manageably priced for most shoppers, and shipping is free on Amazon.
Best Down Pillow
If you’re set on the plush coziness of down, East Coast Bedding offers a luxurious pillow. White goose down is considered the highest quality down available. It’s also long-lasting with the proper care. Harvested from the undercoat of geese, it stays lofted and soft. East Coast Bedding offers standard, queen, and king sizes with a medium fill level.
The down is encased in a 400 thread count 100% cotton sateen cover. They use only the highest quality white goose down, and source their feathers in the USA. East Coast Bedding specifies that all of their geese are treated humanely.
This pillow is hypoallergenic, so it’s a good option for those with asthma or allergies. It’s priced higher because down is more costly to produce, but you can expect years of comfort in return. Amazon offers financing, so you can make monthly payments. They also offer full refunds with returns for pillows that haven’t been used.
Best Memory Foam Pillow
Snuggle-Pedic knows that a solid square of memory foam may work well for mattresses, but it doesn’t always jive for pillows. Their shredded foam fill can be adjusted to contour to your head shape and neck curve. That way you can mold the pillow to your sleeping style, regardless of your sleep position. The natural buoyancy of memory foam also keeps your neck properly aligned, no matter your sleep position.
The pillow features cooling technology, so heat doesn’t get trapped in the foam filling. The Kool-Flow® Bamboo cover has micro-vents that improve airflow. Inside, the Snuggle-Pedic’s proprietary Cloud-Coated™ memory foam creates tiny pockets of air that enhance breathability. The shredded foam is smoother than cube-cut foam filling, so you won’t feel lumps.
Additionally, Snuggle-Pedic sends you extra foam filling for free, so you can customize your pillow’s loft level. Simply remove the bamboo cover, unzip the inner liner, and add or remove foam. It’s hypoallergenic, dust mite resistant, and machine washable. You get a 120-night trial period and a 20 year warranty on your pillow, which is great for the price.
Best Down Alternative Pillow
Some consumers can’t afford down pillows or consider the harvesting process to be inhumane. Casper offers a luxurious alternative that is the perfect pillow for all sleep positions. According to research by Casper, most people move around while sleeping, so they wanted their pillow to work for side, back, and stomach sleepers.
The Casper pillow has a unique “pillow-in-pillow” design. An inner layer of plush polyester microfiber fill creates a supportive core, while the outer layer adds fluff. The 100% cotton cover features a Gussett design, which is a strip of fabric running around the perimeter of the pillow. This creates extra space for more even distribution of the fill.
The Original Casper Pillow is machine washable and covered by a 1-year limited warranty. If polyester fill isn’t your thing, Casper also sells a foam pillow that works as a down alternative.
Best Pillow for Side Sleepers
Side sleepers need a pillow with extra loft and flexibility. Medium to high density down pillows provide the neck support needed to keep your spine aligned while resting on your shoulder, hips, and ankles. The FineFeather down pillow is a medium density, 700 fill power pillow that keeps your neck aligned and head cushioned without sinking too low.
They use 27 oz. of the lightest Hungarian goose down to provide maximum fluff and breathability. The medium density means it’s not too high and not too low. The damask cover is made of 330 thread count 100% cotton for an extra soft feel.
Their goose down is hypoallergenic and free of fragrances. It’s completely made in the USA and available with financing on Amazon. The cost is a bit higher, which is expected with real down pillows, but side sleepers know that the right pillow is worth it.
Best Hotel Pillow
Have you ever wanted to leave with your hotel pillow because it was so soft and comfy? Beckham Hotel Collection provides you with a super budget-friendly way to get a hotel-quality comfortable pillow at home. Their gel pillow contours to your neck’s natural curves, which reduces neck pain. It also provides just enough height to help prevent snoring.
Beckham Hotel uses a silky 100% sateen cotton cover. The fill is made of poly gel fiber, which is designed to feel like down feathers. The gel composition means this pillow sleeps cooler than down or memory foam pillows. The high-quality construction ensures that the fill doesn’t lose its shape, which helps keep your neck in proper alignment all night long.
Additionally, this pillow is mold, mildew, and dust mite resistant. It’s free of allergens and chemicals, making it a great choice for sleepers with respiratory issues. The entire pillow is machine washable and stain resistant. Amazon offers a 30-day satisfaction guarantee, plus free shipping and returns on top of the low cost.
Best Pillow for Stomach Sleepers
Stomach sleepers need to pay special attention to their pillow, since this sleep position already contorts their neck to a sharp right angle. Goose down is an excellent choice since the airiness of down feathers make them easy to adjust and compact.
Continental Bedding’s luxury pillow features 25 oz. of 100% white goose down. They also offer soft and firm options. While the 550 fill power works for all sleep positions, stomach sleepers will find it offers a comfortable blend of softness and support. The feathers are grouped into pockets of cotton for even distribution, and the pillow case is made of 300 thread count cotton with reinforced seams.
Continental Bedding also takes the welfare of their geese seriously. Their pillows are made in the USA and are hypoallergenic. The price for these pillows is affordable compared to other down options. Amazon even offers financing when you buy a 2 pack. As with all down pillows, make sure you fluff it up between uses, so it doesn’t flatten over time.
Best Latex Pillow
Saatva’s pillow provides a plush feel while maintaining its supportive loft. The pillow is designed with gusseted sides, which more evenly distributes the fill, so your head doesn’t tilt to one side. It also has a “pillow-in-pillow” construction. The core is composed of shredded Talalay latex, providing extra support. The outer layer is filled with microdenier fiber, which is soft and breathable. The sateen cover is made of moisture-wicking 100% cotton.
If you find that your Saatva pillow feels too firm, you can remove the Talalay core, leaving only the plush fiber layer. Talalay and microdenier fiber are hypoallergenic and dust-mite and mildew resistant. Additionally, the outer layer is machine washable. Saatva gives you a 45-night trial period and free shipping.
Best Pillow for Neck Pain
Neck pain is a serious issue that can cause splitting headaches and lead to further injury. Proper pillow support can prevent and alleviate neck pain. The right fit is one that keeps your upper back and neck in a neutral position. The Coop Home Goods Adjustable Pillow allows you to add or remove fill to find the perfect shape and loft. Coop Home Goods also uses new, CertiPUR-US certified memory foam, never leftover foam.
The Lulltra fabric cover is a polyester and viscose-rayon blend. The Rayon is made from sustainably sourced bamboo, so it’s extra breathable and smooth. Coop Home Goods uses a mix of cooling gel-infused memory foam and microfiber in their pillow. The cover stretches, allowing you to comfortably adjust the fill level to support your neck.
The materials used are hypoallergenic and dust mite resistant, and the process is vegan and cruelty-free. The Coop Home Goods adjustable pillow is made in the USA and ships with an extra 1/2lb of fill for easy customization. You get a 100-night sleep trial and 5-year warranty with purchase.
Best Firm Pillow
Firm pillows are great for back and side sleepers because they provide adequate support for your neck and head. Beautyrest developed their extra firm pillow from exhaustive research with focus groups. The result is a pillow with the height and density needed to prevent spinal misalignment.
They use CertiPUR-US certified NaturesLoft fiberfill inside the pillow. The cover is made of extra soft 400-thread count Pima cotton. It features a 2 inch gusset, which enhances loft and creates even weight distribution.
Additionally, Beautyrest designs and manufactures their products in the USA. Shipping is free through Amazon. This is one of the most budget-conscious luxury picks on our list. It checks all the boxes for side and back sleepers who want luxury quality and a firm feel at a low price.
Types of Luxury Pillows
Feather pillows are distinct from down pillows. Feathers are the outer coat from ducks or geese, while down is the softer, finer undercoat. While feathers provide better support and are less expensive than down, they are not as soft and the stems can poke out of the fabric. Typically, pillows for sleep are not all-feather; most include some down.
These are good options for those who like a firm feel from their pillow; back and side sleepers are good candidates for feather pillows. The density of the feathers creates a supportive surface for your head. Just make sure to put a thick cover over your pillow, so rogue stems don’t scratch you throughout the night.
Feather pillows are not great for stomach sleepers because they tend to be too firm or thick. They’re also not the best choice for those who like a plush or fluffy feel. Feathers aren’t machine washable, so make sure to follow the care instructions closely, and you’ll have a supportive pillow for many years.
Similar to feather pillows, down pillows are sourced from geese or ducks; however, down is the undercoat of the bird, rather than the topcoat. Down is lighter, warmer, and more plush than topcoat feathers. Goose down especially is considered a luxury material. Sleepers with down pillows often describe the sensation of resting their head on a cloud.
When shopping for a down pillow, take note of the fill level. A higher fill equals more feathers and more support. Back and side sleepers will want a denser fill, possibly mixed with fiber, foam, or topcoat feathers. Stomach sleepers need less fill and a lower loft.
The main disadvantage to down bed pillows is that they’re not machine washable, and thus difficult to clean. Some consumers also consider feather harvesting to be inhumane. Shoppers pay more for down products because they have a long lifespan, maintain their structure with proper care, and provide an airy feel unlike any other fill materials.
Down alternative is a popular option for shoppers who can’t afford down products or who avoid down for ethical reasons or allergies. Alternative fills are made from synthetic fibers and closely match the general feel of down. They are airy and soft, but don’t pack down as firmly as natural down. This makes them a good fit for stomach sleepers. Back sleepers could do well with a high-fill down alternative pillow that provides enough support.
Side sleepers aren’t the best candidate for down alternatives because they need extra support to hold their head in alignment without putting too much stress on their shoulder and neck. If you can find a down alternative with the right loft, this style of pillow can be an affordable choice for any type of sleeper. Plus, they are machine washable, unlike real down.
Memory foam pillows come in lots of shapes and styles. Some are a single, ergonomically-shaped piece of foam, while others include pockets of diced or shredded foam. Memory foam’s standout characteristic is that it’s unmatched in its ability to contour to your unique shape, relieving neck pain and pressure. This customized feel makes it one of the most popular pillow materials.
Not everyone loves memory foam, though, because it can be too firm for certain sleep positions. Stomach sleepers will want shredded memory foam with a lower fill level. Side sleepers will appreciate how cubed memory foam can be adjusted to conform to their shoulder height. Back sleepers get the orthopedic support they need with a solid cut. Memory foam is also buoyant, so it will quickly adjust to changes in a combination sleeper’s posture.
Keep in mind that memory foam is not machine washable, but most memory foam pillows come with removable cases. They’re also warmer than most other options, but many pillow companies have addressed that issue by incorporating cooling materials like gel and latex into their foam, along with breathable pillow covers.
What to Look for When Shopping
Loft is the top-to-bottom height of your pillow. It’s a very important consideration when pillow shopping, because the right loft keeps your neck and spine aligned, while the wrong loft can cause serious neck pain.
Low loft pillows are under 3 inches in thickness. These are ideal for stomach sleepers, since anything higher will extend the neck upwards, resulting in pain and possibly muscle strains. Low loft pillows don’t provide enough support for back sleepers and side sleepers. The lack of height causes your skull to tilt out of alignment.
Medium loft pillows are 3 to 5 inches in thickness. These are generally too high for stomach sleepers, but work for most back sleepers and small or average sized side sleepers. They strike a good balance between cushion and support.
High loft pillows are higher than 5 inches in thickness. These are ideally suited to back sleepers and side sleepers with wide shoulders, since they secure the head and neck in a neutral position throughout the night.
- Side sleepers should aim for pillows with a medium to high loft level. They need sufficient support to avoid neck pain and misalignment. Pillows that are too firm will crank the head up, while extra soft pillows allow your head to sink too far from your shoulder. Good options for side sleepers include: adjustable pillows, medium-firm poly gel or down alternative pillows, feather-mix pillows, and shredded memory foam pillows.
- Stomach sleepers need a soft, low loft pillow. Anything fimer or higher will cause your neck to contort up when it’s already out of alignment. Accordingly, stomach sleepers should shop for low loft fiber pillows, down pillows, and adjustable pillows.
- Back sleepers can manage well with medium to firm pillows of various materials. The key is to find a loft that keeps your head level while supporting your neck. Good options include: latex pillows, medium or firm fiber pillows, medium or firm gel pillows, feather-mix pillows, and memory foam pillows.
- Combination sleepers arguably have the most options, since they need both cushion and support. They especially need a pillow that responds to their movement. Excellent options for combination sleepers are adjustable loft pillows, down alternative pillows, and shredded memory foam pillows.
Following care and cleaning instructions improves the lifespan and performance of your pillow. Care guidelines are unique to each pillow’s construction and fill material. Pillow materials that are machine washable include polyester, poly-gel fiber, down alternative, and some shredded memory foams.
Generally, memory foam pillows need to be spot cleaned, but removable cases or cotton shells can be unzipped and washed. Down and feathers are never machine washable and require extra care. Extended periods of wetness can cause a bad smell, while too much heat can burn the feathers. Also, improper washing methods can cause feathers to clump. It’s best to consult the provider’s care guidelines.
Read More: How to Wash Down Pillows
Hotel quality pillows generally range between $70-$150, depending on the materials used. Lower-cost fibers, such as poly-gel, run much cheaper. You can even find luxury poly-fiber or down alternative pillows as low as $35.
Memory foam and latex pillows tend to sell for $40-$50+, and feather pillows (especially down) typically start at $70 per pillow. As with all products, you pay for quality (and sometimes brand name).
What kinds of pillows do they use in 5 star hotels?
5 star hotels use standard-sized luxury pillows, which are usually made of down or down alternatives. Hotel pillows are known for their opulent feel, and down is extraordinarily soft. Although not as common, some hotel pillows are filled with a gel-infusion or feather mix.
Are expensive pillows worth it?
Luxury pillows are expensive for good reason. They are often much more durable than cheaply-made pillows and use osteopathic technology to prevent spinal misalignment and muscle strain. Of course, the final consensus is yours, but we think that good neck health is worth the investment.
In this list of best luxury pillows, we’ve covered different materials, brands, price points, loft levels, and sleep positions. If neck discomfort is an issue for you, or if you just want a five-star hotel sleep experience from the comfort of home, any of these offerings are a great place to start your search.
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