Pillow selection is a very personalised affair. People will want different colours, shapes, sizes, and material for their pillows. The best way to pick a pillow that is right for you is to create an individualized criterion.
Let’s take a look at a couple of factors that you need to consider when picking the right pillow for your accommodation.
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You are well advised to use your instinct to pick pillows that will make your guests the most comfortable.
1. Fibre Fill
There are numerous ways that you can fill a pillow. Each of the methods has its merits and demerits and will depend on your personal preference and needs. The following are the most common types of filler materials that are put into pillows:
Pillows filled with down are light and soft. They provide a soft surface on which to rest your head at night. If you like soft materials, then you will love these pillows. The down material is either made from duck or goose fibres.
The goose fibre tends to be softer compared to the duck fibre. It is, therefore, more expensive depending on the softness of the goose down. It is important to note that both pure down and all down pillows will contain other fill, as well as the feathers.
The biggest worry among the users of down pillows is allergic reactions and sensitivity to the down material. However, it has been noted that most of the allergic reactions come as a result of using low quality down materials that have not been adequately cleaned.
If the dirt remains on the down material instead of the fibre, be sure that the pillow will give its user allergy and discomfort.
If you are worried about getting allergy reaction from the down, you can check for hypoallergenic down, also known as “hypodown”, which is a guarantee that it has been adequately cleaned.
Hypodown is a blend of pure down and a natural substance such as syriaca which boosts the allergy-free properties of the down.
Hypoallergenic down will guarantee the longevity of your pillow because it does not need a lot of cleaning.
Remember that good quality pillows will be expensive but the effect they have on the quality of sleep will be more than worth it.
Synthetic Down and Polyester Pillow Fill
Synthetic down is also known as down alternative. And is a polyester microfibre material.
Your synthetic down or polyester pillow will feel light and soft just like an authentic goose or down.
These synthetic fill pillows are best suited for people suffering from allergies. Mainly because they are hypoallergenic.
Also, if you are shopping on a budget, this is the pillow to consider buying. In particular, polyester fill pillows are quality, yet inexpensive compared to all the others.
Other features worth mentioning about the synthetic down pillows include:
- Wide selection of down alternative models to choose from
- Keep you cool through the night. They absorb very little body heat
- Moldable easily so you can cuddle them as you sleep
- Soothing to sleepers suffering from neck and shoulder pains
Wool Pillow Fill
Pillows filled with wool are naturally hypoallergenic and can resist dust mites and mould.
Since the wool can absorb the moisture from your head and neck, the pillows with woollen fill help to regulate the temperature when you're sleeping, keeping you warm during winter and cold summers.
Pillows filled with wool are firm and durable. If you are looking for all the benefits of wool but do not require the firmness, you can substitute the wool with alpaca wool and get rid of the cashmere fibres.
Cotton Pillow Fill
Cotton is similar to wool in so many ways. It is naturally hypoallergenic and also resistant to mould and dust mites.
Cotton pillows are usually firm and flat. They are a smart choice for people who are sensitive to chemicals and are allergic to other materials.
Latex Pillow Fill
With a latex pillow fill, you will benefit from the following salient features:
- Latex fill is much firmer compared to down fill
- It’s comfortable to sleep on
- The latex filled pillow holds its shape throughout the night
- Resistant to dust and mites
- Contoured to provide extra support to your head and neck and to restrict a lot of movement as you sleep. They are not the kind of pillows that you'll squish and change shape and positions as you like.
Shredded Memory Foam Fill
Another popular pillow fill is the memory foam fill. The memory foam responds and conforms appropriately to an individual’s shape, weight, body heat, and the contours of the head, shoulders, and neck.
Moreover, the foam distributes your weight evenly across the bed. This has made it popular with people experiencing head and neck pains. The same applies to those who have problems with pressure points that usually cause discomfort when they are sleeping.
The memory foam retains heat which makes it uncomfortable when one is sweating. However, modern pillows that have memory foam come with designs that allow for ventilation. Thus the foam remains a material that retains heat.
Another disadvantage of the memory foam is that it gives off some chemical smells especially when it's new and this can be bothersome to some people.
2. Pillow Fill Weight
You will also need to consider the weight of your fill. For example, down and synthetic pillows are usually light whereas memory foam and latex are heavy.
Picking the right weight for your pillow is a personal preference. For example, if you have to reshape and move your pillow around, you are better off using a light pillow.
3. Quality of the Pillow Fill
Another thing that you need to consider when buying a pillow is the quality of the fill.
Here’s the thing:
The quality of your pillow fill will determine your pillow’s comfort, longevity, and support. And all these factors will be reflected in the price of the pillow.
When you decide that you want a particular type of pillow fill, you need to select the highest quality possible for your budget.
Keep in mind that you will be spending thousands of hours on that pillow during its lifespan. And the pillows quality directly relates to the quality of sleep that you'll get.
4. Size of the Pillow
Most people require just the standard sized pillow for their bed. However, some people may prefer larger pillows and that is also fine - as long as the pillows keep your sleep posture well aligned.
The thickness of your pillow will determine how well your head, shoulders, neck, and spine are aligned when you sleep.
Ensure that the pillowcase and the pillow properly fit together. Never try to fit an oversized pillow into an undersized pillowcase or vice versa.
Pillows are made to fit different specialised shapes to increase support and stability for your neck and head when you sleep. Examples of pillows that can be useful include contour and cervical pillows which help with back pain and neck pain.
Some pillows are built for stability to relieve your pressure points so that you can have a more relaxed sleep. Beware of the marketing element in some of these speciality-shaped pillows.
5. The Pillow Fabric
Before you buy a pillow, ensure that its fabrics are breathable and natural. The pillowcases will cover the pillow and help elongate its life by protecting it from sweat and stains.
Decorative pillows will look awesome on beds but you should remove them before you sleep.
6. Pillow Chemistry
Synthetic materials such as polyester and foam are produced using chemical processes. They usually undergo an antimicrobial treatment.
It is important that you understand the chemistry that went into producing your pillow so that you can be willing to invest in a well-made pillow.
Remember to consider your allergy and chemical sensitivities before you select a particular pillow type.
What is Fill Power?
The higher the fill number the better the quality of your pillow and the longer it will serve you. If you find that a pillow has a fill power of over 600, it is a sign that the pillow is either made of natural or synthetic down and it is of high quality.
There is a limit to the power of the fill material because a fill of 800 and above will not mean that your pillow can last for over a decade. Don’t be fooled by the sales pitch.
Here a helpful video to help you understand fill power better. Check it out.
Nab Your Next Superb Pillow
“A good laugh and a long sleep are the best cures in the doctor's book” - Irish proverb
Since you’ve read our no-nonsense guide to buying superb pillows, you are now ready to make an informed purchase.
Go on, treat your guests to the best hotel quality pillows now. They will surely catch some refreshing sleep tonight! Sweet dreams.
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