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Working Mothers

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My Pillow Buying Guide

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I bought a regular MYPILLOW and two travel sized pillows a few months ago. They lived up to their name! You can believe it! All the advertising is true. I do not wake up with discomfort in my neck. I wake up rested. When I go to bed and my head hits that pillow, I don't move. I go straight to sleep with no tossing and turning and trying to get comfortable. I have recommended these pillows to several of my friends and they've bought them also. I've asked them how they're doing with their pillows and they love them. The other day I was in a store and a young woman was looking at pillows, one after the other. I waited for a minute and finally said, "Go online and get a MYPILLOW. You'll love it!" She said she would and she looked no further.

Side-sleepers sleep either in a fetal position or a relatively straight one, and they need the most pillow support (roughly 4 to 6 inches). According to this study, most people are side-sleepers.

Stomach-sleepers are a trickier bunch: If you sleep with your head turned to the side and resting on a pillow, you need the least amount of support. If you tuck your arms under your torso, sleep in a half-side and half-stomach position, or have sensitive breasts, you may prefer a pillow with more cushioning.

Some manufacturers market their pillows toward back-, stomach-, or side-sleepers specifically, but there are no industry standards on what, for example, makes one model a side-sleeper pillow and another a back-sleeper pillow. At the end of the day these labels are meaningless.

We personally are not the most diligent about pillow care. But our research found that everyone should wash their pillows a couple of times a year, to zap any crud that sneaks past pillowcases and even pillow protectors. We asked down expert Jack Sukalac, owner of All About Down, and Christian Alexander, chief operating officer at Nest Bedding, how to wash pillows with different kinds of fill.

Sleep Number PlushComfort Pillow ClassicGood for: all sleep positionsWe prefer the adjustability of the PlushComfort Pillow Ultimate, but the PlushComfort Pillow Classic was one of the comfier down-alternative pillows in our 2019 testing. Side-sleepers found it was more supportive than the Snowe Down Alternative pillows and much softer than the Brooklinen Down Alternative. If you like a medium-density pillow, for any sleep position, this is one to consider.

Parachute Down Alternative Pillow (soft)Good for: stomach-sleepersIn our pre-2018 tests, stomach-sleepers who liked a soft pillow with little support appreciated this pillow, but those who wanted more substance found it to be merely flat.

Sleep Number ComfortFit Pillow ClassicGood for: all sleep positionsIn two years of testing (2018 and 2019), side-sleepers have liked this pillow a lot, and it ranked in the middle of the pack for back- and stomach-sleepers. But no one liked it better than the Nest Bedding Easy Breather or the Xtreme Comforts pillows, and we prefer the adjustable Ultimate version for its flexibility.

Xtreme Comforts Slim Sleeper Shredded Memory Foam PillowGood for: stomach-sleepersThis is a version of the Xtreme Comforts we like as a budget pick, just with less fill. We tested it in 2019, but we found that people who preferred a flattish pillow liked down options more, and people who wanted a pillow with more support needed more loft.

Malouf Z Cotton Encased Down Blend Pillow (standard)This was the highest-rated down/feather pillow on Amazon that was under $100 at the time of our testing. Side-sleepers found it comfortable at first, but they ultimately needed more height for proper support throughout the night. Back-sleepers liked its support and extra-long size, but they said it was just too firm and flat to be comfortable over the long haul.

Brooklinen Down Alternative Pillow (plush, mid-plush, and firm)We tried all three densities of this Brooklinen pillow, and we sleep-tested the mid-plush and firm pillows with different sleep positions. All were universall


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