The Best Water Pillows: Our Top Picks & Buyers Guide

Have you struggled to find the pillow? The best water pillows take the benefits of traditional pillows and add the versatility and comfort that only water can provide.

By Nicole Gleichmann

There’s nothing quite like getting a good night’s rest. You wake up feeling rejuvenated, energetic, and ready to start the day. 

Sadly, few of us are fortunate enough to regularly experience this nighttime bliss. You might toss and turn at night or wake up with an unexpected kink in your neck. While there are many factors that determine your quality of sleep, one of the most influential factors that doesn’t get enough attention is your pillow.

One key to comfortable slumber is correct alignment, especially that of your spine, head, and neck. When you’re in proper alignment, you’re more likely to sleep soundly and wake up without new aches and pains. And when it comes to alignment, your pillow plays a role equally important to that of your mattress. Fortunately, the right pillow costs much less than the best mattress

But what if you’ve tried one pillow after the next without luck? The trick might be to swap your regular pillow out for a water pillow. Water-based pillows offer a feel unlike that of any other pillow. The unique properties of water create a pillow that automatically moves with you at night, all while providing support that doesn’t sag as the hours go by. 

In a study by John Hopkin’s University, water-based pillows were found to improve sleep and reduce pain. With multiple types of water pillows, you can find one that offers the plush feel that you’re accustomed to, all with an added cooling effect.

Our Top Picks for the Best Water Pillows

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Blissberry SpineRight water pillows

Best Overall Water Pillow: BLISSBERRY SpineRight Adjustable Water Pillow

BLISSBURY’s SpineRight Adjustable Water Pillow won our top spot thanks to their ultimate adjustability. Theirs is the only water pillow on the market with both an adjustable water layer and fill layer. By adding or removing water and polyester fill, you can find your ideal loft, plushness, and firmness.

On top of its ability to be customized, BLISSBURY’s pillow comes with an attractive bamboo pillowcase. Bamboo is a soft and silky fiber with impeccable breathability, making this one of the cooler water pillows you’ll find.

Mediflow memory foam water pillow

Best Memory Foam Water Pillow: Mediflow Water Pillow Memory Foam

We love the contouring feel and optimal support offered by the Mediflow Water Pillow Memory Foam. The combination of memory foam and the adjustable water base is incredibly supportive, making it a good choice for side sleepers because they need adequate support to keep their head and neck in proper alignment. 

Mediflow created the original waterbase pillow over 25 years ago. They stand behind the quality and longevity of their products with a 3-year warranty and 30-day satisfaction guarantee.

Mediflow down water pillow

Best Down Water Pillow: Mediflow Down Waterbase Pillow

Down is luxuriously plush and comfortable, yet, on its own, it rarely provides the support needed by those who sleep on their sides or backs. The Mediflow Down Waterbase Pillow combines the reliable support of water with the lavish feel of down for a pillow unlike any other. 

And, just as with Mediflow’s other pillows, you have 30 days to try it out and a 3-year warranty.

FOMI water pillow

Best Budget Water Pillow: FOMI Premium Large Water Sleeping Pillow

FOMI’s Water Pillow offers the customizable fill level of other water pillows at a competitive price point. With a soft and fluffy polyester fill and a smooth 100% cotton shell, you can enjoy a cozy, pleasurable night’s sleep.


What Is a Water Pillow?

Water pillows have two layers. The bottom layer is made up of a refillable water chamber, designed to provide thermal insulation and prevent leaks. The top layer is comprised of traditional pillow materials. 

How a water pillow feels is determined by two things. The first is how much water you add to the chamber. The greater the volume of water in the chamber, the greater the loft and firmness of the pillow. 

The second is what fiber is used to make the upper layer of the pillow. You will find water pillows made from

  • Memory Foam: Memory foam pillows respond to your body heat, allowing a marshmallow-y cradle that offers both comfort and support. But be aware that this material can sleep hot.
  • Down Feathers: Down pillows are made from the insulating lower-layer of fluffy feather clusters in ducks and geese. Down provides a luxurious cloudlike feel, but it is costly. 
  • Polyester: Polyester pillows are those that you’re likely most familiar with. Polyester fiber is lightweight and comes in a variety of firmness levels. It does not have as good of longevity as memory foam or down, but it is normally less expensive. 

What Are the Benefits of a Water Pillow

Adjustability

Water pillows are one of the few types of pillows that you can tinker with until you find the right feel for you. By adding or subtracting water, you can adjust the pillow until you achieve a good night’s rest. And with your sleep position, your body size, and your body shape all influencing the ideal loft and support level of a pillow, water pillows are one of the few options that fit the needs of most sleepers.  

Fluidity

There is one thing that water pillows provide that no other pillow can replicate, and that is its fluidity. When you move around at night, the water portion of the pillow results in an instantaneous adjustment to your new position. 

For those who tend to toss and turn at night, this fluidity can help reduce how often you wake up at night. Plus, it keeps your head and neck supported from the moment you fall asleep until your alarm rudely wakes you up in the morning. The result? More energy and less pain throughout your day. 

Lasting Support

Materials like down, down alternative, and polyester can all lose some of their voluptuous fluff and support throughout the night. This is why you may have had to wake up and reposition or fluff your pillow in the middle of the night. Because the water sac keeps its shape, you will experience support that doesn’t lessen over time. 

Durability

Over time, traditional pillows will slowly become less comfortable and cloud-like. This is a result of the fibers within compressing. Even with proper care, the compression of soft fibers is unavoidable. 

While water pillows do contain these same fibers, only a fraction of their comfort and support comes from these materials. Thanks to the longevity of the internal water sac, your pillow is more likely to stay comfortable for multiple years of regular use. Of course, the quality of the water chamber and upper comfort layer will influence how long your pillow lasts. 

What Are the Downfalls of a Water Pillow

Weight

Water pillows are heavy. Because of this, they aren’t a pillow that you’re going to move around with you at night. However, few people feel the need to do so with a pillow that moves when they move. 

Potential Leaks

One worry with water pillows is that they could leak on your bed while you’re sleeping. The higher the quality of water pillow, the less likely this is to happen. But it’s always a risk that you want to plan for. You can try using a waterproof pillow case or a waterproof mattress protector. This last option, the waterproof mattress protector, is a great way to protect your mattress from other potential damage as well. 

Who Is a Water Pillow Good For?

While water pillows can work for all sleeping positions, they are best for back sleepers and side sleepers who need a bit more loft and support than stomach sleepers. 

Because water pillows are adjustable, they’re a great option for anyone who isn’t sure exactly how firm or lofty they need their pillow to be to provide pain relief and support. 

Lastly, this type of pillow has been shown to help relieve pain and encourage restful sleep. This makes it a solid choice for anyone looking for pain relief or who wakes up often at night.


Conclusion

Water-based pillows offer a feel unlike that of any other pillow on the market. The way that the water sac supports your head and neck combined with the way it perfectly adjusts when you move make it great for pain relief and comfort.


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