Shredded gel-infused memory foam provides a cooling effect. Blended with plush microfiber for a luxurious downy feel with excellent support. Adjustable loft. Bamboo-derived outer cover is hypoallergenic and soft. Gusseted design delivers even support and superb comfort. Comes with a 100-night trial for buyer confidence. Ideal for therapeutic use or simple indulgence.
Expensive. Some owners noticed a slight odor, which dissipates upon airing.
A combination of shredded memory foam and poly-fiber offers a blend of comfort and support. Breathable. Loft is easy to adjust by removing or adding foam. Bamboo/polyester cover is naturally hypoallergenic and dust mite resistant. Fully machine washable and dryer safe.
Can get a bit warm. Comes with the typical memory foam smell and needs to be aired before using.
Quality high-density shredded memory foam filling can be adjusted to user preference. Molds to the shape of your head and neck for superb support and comfort. Nontoxic, hypoallergenic, and dust mite resistant. Breathable Kool-Flow Bamboo case. Machine washable.
Some owners complained of a lingering chemical odor.
Crafted of responsive memory foam that adjusts to individual needs by relieving pressure points and providing reliable support. Zippered quilted cover is breathable, well made, and easy to remove for laundering. Pillow doesn't tend to lose its shape or support over time. Made by one of the most trusted brands in bedding.
On the firm side, so it won't work for anyone who likes a softer pillow. Memory foam odor is mild but noticeable.
Soft, comfortable memory foam with a trim design that's perfect for any type of sleeper. Foam easily contours to the head, neck, and shoulders for comfortable sleep. Removable cover is machine washable. Comes with a five-year limited warranty to protect your investment.
Offers minimal support, and tends to flatten out a bit with use. Has a slight chemical smell when it's new.
We purchase every product we review with our own funds — we never accept anything from product manufacturers.
We purchase every product we review with our own funds — we never accept anything from product manufacturers.
A bad pillow can make getting a good night’s rest nearly impossible and spell disaster for your neck. While many pillows never quite live up to their lofty promises, memory foam pillows deliver consistent comfort and support, night after night. If you long for a pillow that doesn't make mornings a pain in the neck, or you simply want something that retains its shape, a memory foam pillow could be the right choice for you.
Whether you like them soft, firm, contoured, or adjustable, there’s a memory foam pillow out there for you. But with so many options to choose from, finding the right one can be a daunting task.
If you’re losing sleep over choosing the right memory foam pillow, we’re here to help.
When it comes to getting a great night’s sleep, the right pillow is just as important as a good mattress. After all, what use is a healthy back when you can barely turn your neck? Because a good pillow can mean different things to different people, familiarizing yourself with the various types of memory foam pillows is essential.
Traditional: These consist of a solid piece of foam that's cut to size. Traditional memory foam pillows generally have a low to medium loft and are available in two cover styles: single-seam and gusseted. While single-seam pillows tend to have a more pronounced slope at the edges, gusseted varieties have double seams that give them a bit of added loft around the sides, making these the preferred choice for people seeking additional neck and shoulder support.
Shredded: From the outside, shredded memory foam pillows look just like any other pillow, but the filling is entirely unique. Rather than a solid piece of foam, these pillows consist of hundreds of little shredded bits of memory foam. This innovative design boasts a two-fold benefit: the tiny gaps between the shreds deliver superior breathability and, if you choose an adjustable model, the filling can easily be added or removed to achieve your desired loft.
Contoured: Contoured pillows consist of a solid slab of memory foam shaped in a manner that can be especially beneficial for back and side sleepers or those who frequently suffer with neck problems. With two curved edges and a concave center, this design supports the neck while cradling the head.
Wedge: With a unique triangular shape, wedge pillows are often recommended as a prop to combat respiratory problems, sinus issues, or acid reflux. While this design might not be the most popular choice for the average sleeper, these pillows are fantastically versatile and can also be positioned under the knees to reduce pressure on the lumbar spine or used during pregnancy, when side sleeping with an ever-expanding belly can feel uncomfortable.
Memory foam pillows are available in a range of firmnesses, including soft, medium-soft, medium, medium-firm, and firm, making it easier to find a good fit for your needs. While the best firmness for you largely boils down to personal preference, it's a good idea to consider your sleeping style as well. The guidelines below can point you in the right direction.
Soft: Softer pillows that provide extra give can be ideal for front sleepers. Just remember to choose a thinner pillow or a shredded model that can be adjusted to help keep your spine in correct alignment.
Medium: Medium to medium-firm pillows provide a good balance of comfort and support that works well for back sleepers.
Firm: The firmest memory foam pillows can feel too hard for some average users, but if you need extra support, one of these might be a good fit. Firmer pillows typically work best for back or side sleepers.
Just like regular pillows, memory foam pillows come in different sizes. Although it's always a good idea to choose a pillow size that closely fits the dimensions of your bed, remember to factor in your body type and shoulder width as well.
Standard: Measuring 20 inches wide by 26 inches long, standard memory foam pillows are the most compact size available. These work well as a single pillow on a twin bed or two placed side by side on a full-size bed. If you have an average build, this length should be more than adequate.
Queen: At 20 inches wide by 30 inches long, these pillows are exactly four inches longer than standard pillows and fit a queen-size bed perfectly. They're also ideal for people with larger frames or restless sleepers.
King: With dimensions that measure 20 inches wide by 32 inches long, king-size pillows deliver an additional two inches of length. This not only provides a fuller look for larger beds, but the generous length also provides plenty of cushioning for those who toss and turn. If you enjoy reading or watching television in bed, one of these can make a fantastic headrest.
Body: These extra-wide pillows measure either 48 or 54 inches long by 20 inches wide. A body pillow is the perfect bedtime companion for those who like hold onto their pillow while they sleep.
Even if you intend to cover your pillow with a pillowcase to match your bedding, the materials enclosing your memory foam pillow still warrant some attention. Because memory foam has a tendency to retain heat, a breathable case is a feature worth looking for. If you're a hot sleeper, another factor to consider is how well the materials wick moisture away from your head. Let's take a look at some of the most common memory foam pillow cover materials.
Bamboo: Hypoallergenic, breathable, and naturally antimicrobial, bamboo does an outstanding job of keeping your head cool and comfortable throughout the night. For this very reason, many memory foam pillows have covers that consist largely of bamboo.
Cotton: Cotton is comfortable, breathable, and hypoallergenic, but when it comes to wicking away moisture, this material generally isn't the best option. Highly absorbent cotton holds onto moisture and won’t do much to keep your pillow dry. If you like the idea of a cotton cover but also want something that’s durable and dries quickly, consider a poly-cotton blend.
Polyester blends: Durable, easy to care for, fast-drying, and exceptionally good at wicking away moisture, polyester is often blended with other materials used in memory foam pillow covers.
As mentioned above, one of the main drawbacks of memory foam pillows is that they can absorb and hold onto heat. To combat this problem, many manufacturers are incorporating cooling technology in their designs. This can be as simple as adding ventilation holes to solid memory foam pillows or as high tech as infusing the foam itself with cooling gel. Shredded memory foam pillows already have an edge over solid varieties when it comes to keeping cool, but if you have a tendency to overheat while sleeping, don't overlook models with breathable, moisture-wicking covers or gel-infused foam pieces.
In general, memory foam pillows aren't a one-size-fits-all solution. While side sleepers require extra loft to keep the head and cervical spine in proper alignment, stomach sleepers will benefit from a pillow that's nearly flat. Moreover, different body types have different support needs. For instance, if you’re a side sleeper with broad shoulders, you’ll require a higher sleeping surface than someone with a narrow frame. This is why adjustable loft is such a desirable feature. The ability to add or remove height from your pillow offers support that can be tailored to your individual needs.
On average, memory foam pillow prices range from $20 to $80 and more. The type of memory foam pillow you choose, along with its size, features, and the overall quality of its construction will have an impact on cost as well.
Inexpensive: Memory foam pillows priced between $20 to $30 are usually traditional solid pillows or nonadjustable shredded varieties with a mixed filling. Although additional features might be sparse or even nonexistent, budget-priced memory foam pillows can still deliver contouring support for a healthier night’s sleep. While it’s possible to obtain a set of of two at the higher end of this price point, a single pillow at this price is likely to yield superior quality and durability.
Mid-range: You’ll find a satisfying selection of memory foam pillow types and sizes within the $30 to $40 price margin. Whether you’re looking for a top-notch traditional memory foam pillow, a contoured option for precise cervical support, a set of nonadjustable shredded memory foam pillows, or even a single shredded memory foam pillow with adjustable loft, you’ll have plenty of options at your disposal.
Expensive: If you take your sleep seriously and just can't reach cloud nine unless your head is cradled in the lap of luxury, shelling out between $40 and $80 or more for a high-quality memory foam pillow could be a worthwhile investment. At this price point, you’ll have choices aplenty when it comes to size, style, and specialized features like adjustable loft and cooling technology.
Don't be alarmed if your brand-new pillow is flat as a pancake when you unbox it. Shredded memory foam pillows are often highly compressed for packaging. While most will eventually expand by themselves, you can speed things along by gently fluffing up your pillow and separating compressed clumps of foam with your fingers. A quick spin in the dryer on low can be helpful.
Give yourself time to adjust to a contoured pillow. If you've decided to opt for a contoured memory foam pillow, keep in mind that the unique shape and firm support of these pillows can take some getting used to. Place the pillow flat side down on your bed with the larger of the two contours at the bottom. Once you lie down, give your pillow a few minutes to warm up, even if it feels uncomfortable at first. As transferred body heat begins to soften the foam, the pillow will mold to the shape of your head, neck, and shoulders.
Q. What is memory foam density?
A. Density measures the weight of one cubic foot of memory foam. This is determined by how tightly the foam is compacted. Generally, memory foam densities are rated as follows:
Low: 3.5 pounds and under
Medium: 3.5 to 5 pounds
High: 5 pounds and over
High-density memory foam conforms more closely to contours, provides more support, and is by far the most durable, but it's also more sensitive to heat, so keep this in mind if you sleep hot. Low-density memory foam, on the other hand, typically isn't as supportive, but it might be more comfortable for users who overheat easily and don't necessarily need a highly supportive pillow. Medium-density memory foam strikes a good balance between the two in terms of support, breathability, comfort, and durability.
Q. How do I keep my memory foam pillow clean?
A. Although memory foam pillows should never be machine washed, you can (and should) hand-wash your pillow when it's time for a deep clean. Simply submerge your pillow in lukewarm water along with some mild detergent and gently squeeze it a couple of times to allow the water to penetrate the foam. Never twist or wring your pillow because this can cause irreversible damage. Following this step, refill your bathtub or basin with clean water and give your pillow a rinse, gently squeezing until all the remaining dirt and soap has been removed. Once your memory foam pillow is clean, give it a squeeze to remove excess water and allow it to air-dry.
Q. My new memory foam pillow smells strange. Is this normal?
A. This is perfectly normal and is caused by a process known as off-gassing. While many find the odor of freshly unwrapped memory foam products slightly unpleasant, the good news is that it does dissipate over time and eventually goes away completely. It's usually best to allow new memory foam pillows to air in a well-ventilated room for a few hours before using. Should any lingering odors persist, try sprinkling some baking soda onto your pillow and allow it to sit for an hour or two before vacuuming it off.