Sleep is something too many of us take for granted. We know we have to sleep, but we may not put as much effort as we should into making sure our nights are as comfortable as possible. But if you want to start improving your sleep, one of the first things you need to do is get a good pillow.

There are a lot of different types of pillows on to suit everyone’s needs. Read on to learn more about the different types of pillows you can choose from and which one will be the best for you.


When you’re looking at different types of pillows, one of the first things you’ll need to consider is size. Most pillows you encounter will be standard size – 20 by 26 inches. These will fit into most pillowcases and are the size and rectangular shape we’re all familiar with.
However, you may also run into super standard pillows that are two inches longer or queen pillows that are four inches longer than standard. You can use queen pillowcases for these or the two smaller sizes if you like. King pillows are a full 20 by 30 inches long and will require their own pillowcases; if you’re going to invest in these pillows, you may also want to learn how to wash a silk pillowcase.


In addition to the usual rectangular shape we’re all used to, you may find pillows in several other shapes designed for various uses. European pillows are 26 inches square and are good for cushioning joints and back support. Wedge pillows are shaped like a wedge of cheese and are great for different sorts of body support.

Body pillows are 20 by 54 inches and can help alleviate joint pain and improve sleeping position. Pregnancy pillows are a kind of variation on body pillows that are designed to help support your back and stomach to alleviate discomfort during the night. And roll or bolster pillows are a half-moon shape that can be good for leg and neck support.


Pillows also vary in the type of fill they use. Traditionally, pillows were filled with down from geese or ducks, and you can still find down pillows as an option today. But for those who have allergies or moral qualms about these pillows, you can also get down-alternative pillows that use synthetic fillings.

Memory foam has become a popular option for pillow fillings in recent years thanks to its superior support and ability to conform to your shape. You can also get pillows filled with natural fibers like kapok, buckwheat, wool, and even water. And, of course, there are the synthetic materials, including gel, latex, micro-bead, and polyfill.


Your pillow may be covered by a variety of different fabric types. One of the most common options is cotton, which creates a breathable, moisture-wicking surface that’s very affordable. You may also see bamboo and eucalyptus coverings, which are sustainable and rich in texture.
Poly-thread pillow coverings are durable and can be blended with other natural materials to make them softer. Wool pillow coverings have been popular for years thanks to their insulating properties. And you might see copper-infused coverings which are thought to aid in blood flow and promote better body recovery.


Once you get past the basic structure of pillows, you start getting into more specialized classes of pillows. Hypoallergenic pillows, for instance, can be very important for those who suffer from a variety of common allergies. Sleeping with your face jammed into a bag of your allergy trigger isn’t good for the health, after all.

Hypoallergenic pillows generally use some variety of synthetic filling and may even use gel to prevent allergens from being trapped in the filling. They might feature one of the plant-based coverings, since allergies to cotton and bamboo are fairly rare. Make sure the pillow you’re getting is officially rated as hypoallergenic if you have sensitive allergies.


You may also be looking for a pillow that’s particularly supportive. This can be important if you have some sort of a neck or spinal injury to make sure your spine stays as aligned as possible while you sleep. But a good supportive pillow can also keep you from waking up with headaches in the morning.

Memory foam is often a popular choice for people looking for supportive pillows. Water-filled pillows can be a good option, depending on their construction. And if you really want superb support, you may want to look for an innerspring pillow, which uses the same kinds of springs mattresses do for maximum support.


If you or your partner snores, getting a new pillow could be the key to a better night’s rest. Snoring could be indicative of a more serious condition like sleep apnea. And over time, getting poor-quality sleep can lead to all sorts of health risks, including stroke, heart attack, and dementia.

Some pillows can help raise your body into a better sleep position and prevent snoring. The more supportive pillows made from memory foam or filled with buckwheat are popular choices for people who struggle with snoring. But if you want to invest a little more money in it, you can also get a smart pillow that will listen for you to start snoring and gently nudge you to get you to change position.

Learn More About Types of Pillows

Learn More About Types of Pillows
Getting the right types of pillows for your bed can make sure you get the best possible night’s sleep.

It’s important to think about what size, fill, and covering you want, as well as if you need a specialty pillow like a pregnancy pillow or an anti-snoring pillow. Getting the support you need will leave you better-rested and prepared to take on your day.

If you’d like to read more about how to improve your home, check out the rest of our site. We have content about architecture, bathrooms, kitchens, and more. Check out our bedroom articles and start resting easier tonight.