Memory foam pillows are by far the most popular choice when it comes to helping people with neck pain. This type of pillow molds itself to your head and neck, which helps reduce pressure points. The best memory foam pillow is also known to be quite long-lasting. However, they can get excessively hot in the summer months, so you might not be able to use them all year round.
Although there are many great memory foam pillows on the market today, two companies – Simba Hybrid Pillow and Marnur Pillow – beat everyone else into a cocked hat. These manufacturers have intuitively designed their products to suit back sleepers, front sleepers, and side sleepers. Let’s learn more about these and some other popular options available on the market today.
5 Best Pillows For Neck Pain
1. Simba Hybrid Pillow
The Simba Hybrid Pillow is a memory foam and latex pillow. It’s a good choice if you want a combination of softness and support. While it’s intended for side sleepers, it will work equally well for back sleepers or front sleepers because its shape enables you to add or remove filling until your sleeping posture feels comfortable.
The Simba also offers several different firmness options, so it can be customized to suit the needs of individuals. If you’re looking for a foam pillow that isn’t too hard or too soft, this could be just what you need.
- The outer case is zippable, enabling you to adjust the amount of filling inside.
- It isn’t too hot to sleep on.
- It’s made of two different materials: memory foam and latex.
- It’s available in five different firmness options, which means you can choose one that suits your sleeping posture and preferences.
- It is relatively expensive, but if it yields results for you it may just be worth the money.
- It is quite heavy.
- It isn’t machine washable, which means you’ll need to contact the manufacturer for instructions.
2. Marnur Memory Foam Pillow
The Marnur Pillow is a great choice if you tend to sleep on your side or back. It’s constructed from shredded memory foam, which enables it to contour itself around your head and neck while simultaneously getting rid of pressure points that result from using ordinary pillows.
The cover of this pillow is made from Tencel material, which has natural cooling properties that help reduce heat buildup as you sleep. Since Tencel is also resistant to dust mites, the Marnur Pillow can be used by allergy sufferers.
- It is constructed from shredded memory foam, which means it molds itself to your head and neck, thereby reducing pressure points.
- It comes with a 30-day money-back guarantee.
- The pillow has natural cooling properties that help reduce heat buildup while you sleep.
- It is resistant to dust mites, which means it can be used by allergy sufferers.
- It comes with a removable and machine washable cover.
- It’s not particularly thick; some users may find they need to add the extra filling.
- Although the manufacturer says it can be used on stomach sleepers, this isn’t likely because of its lack of thickness; people who tend to sleep on their stomachs should consider another model.
3. Emma Original Pillow
The Emma Original Pillow is a feather pillow. It’s similar to down, but it has the advantage of not trapping dust mites or other allergens. Consequently, this product is suitable for allergy sufferers.
The Emma comes in two different firmness options: firm and medium. If you’d prefer your pillow to be soft rather than hard, go for the Medium option; if you’re looking for something that won’t flatten out over time, pick the Firm choice instead.
- It comes with a money-back guarantee.
- Unlike down, it’s hypoallergenic so it can be used by people who are allergic to dust mites.
- Its available in two different firmness options: firm and medium.
- It has a zippable outer case, allowing you to adjust the amount of filling inside until you find your perfect level of support.
- The Emma Original is machine washable.
- The feather filling can make it too warm for summer nights; if this is an issue, consider one of our down or cooling pillow reviews instead.
4. Tempur Original Comfort Pillow
Tempur Original Comfort Pillow is a great option if you want something that offers an amazing level of support for your neck, head, and shoulders. It’s filled with Tempur material, which helps the pillow conform to the shape of your body as well as get rid of pressure points.
The cover is made from cotton, so it feels nice to sleep on; another advantage is that it can be removed and washed at 30 degrees Celsius. This product isn’t perfect because it may not suit everybody; however, unless you dislike foam pillow or find they make you too hot during summer nights, this could be just what you need!
- It comes with a 20-year warranty.
- It has a zippable outer casing, so it can be adjusted to get the perfect level of firmness.
- The cover is made from cotton, which feels nice to sleep on and can be removed for easy washing.
- It has special ventilation holes that reduce heat build-up while you’re asleep; these also aid airflow to keep your head cool during summer nights.
-Although foam pillows are good at getting rid of pressure points, they don’t suit everybody. If you dislike this type of pillow or find they make you too hot during summer nights, consider buying one of our down options instead.
5. Eve Sleep Memory Foam Pillow
If you suffer from neck problems or pain in your shoulders, this pillow is well worth looking into. Its cooling gel technology helps to regulate the temperature of your head and neck, thereby preventing overheating and sweating while you sleep.
Its phase change material also aids breathability; it’s constructed from soft Viscose Rayon fabric that’s both incredibly comfortable to spend time on and also very plushy. Plus, this product comes with a 5-year guarantee!
- It has phase change material in its construction; this regulates temperature so you don’t overheat when you’re asleep.
- The Eve Sleep Memory Foam Pillow has special ventilation holes that help reduce heat build-up while you sleep; these also aid airflow so your head doesn’t get too hot.
- It has a 5-year guarantee, allowing you to use it without any risk!
- It’s available in three different densities, so you can choose the one that best suits your weight and sleeping position.
- This pillow is cooling, but it still may not be suitable for people who really feel hot at night; if this sounds like you, consider buying one of our down options instead.
What is the best pillow for neck pain?
When you suffer from neck pain, finding the right pillow is crucial. The best pillows for neck pain UK are those which keep your head and spine in alignment by supporting your neck correctly.
These pillows mold to the shape of your head and neck, providing good support.
Memory foam can make you hot, which isn’t ideal if you sleep hot. Gel-filled memory foam is also cooling, so this might be a good option for people who suffer from neck pain but tend to run warm at night.
These are lightweight and soft; they’re great for propping up your neck in any sleeping position. However, down can irritate some people’s skin because it tends to attract dust mites. If you want the benefits of down without the risks, try a duvet or protector instead!
Although these don’t mold to your head and neck as much as foam, they’re perhaps more breathable and cooler. Feather pillows also give you good support for your spine.
These are easy to keep clean and don’t attract dust mites. However, they sometimes feel a little bit firm, which may not be ideal if you require a lot of support for your neck or shoulders.
If you suffer from allergies – whether environmental allergies like hay fever, animal allergies, or something else – choose a hypoallergenic pillow instead. This will provide the softness and comfort you need without triggering an allergy flare-up!
Latex is naturally hypoallergenic, so this type of pillow might be suitable for anyone with allergies. It’s also temperature regulating – meaning it won’t make you too hot or cold – and supportive pillow.
Down alternative pillows:
These are similar to down pillows but use synthetic materials instead. They’re softer than microfiber pillows because the filling is thinner, providing less support for your neck. This means they’ll suit many people who need good neck support without being too firm!
Cotton pillows are breathable, which keeps you cool while you sleep. However, these types of pillows aren’t great at supporting your neck because they don’t have much substance.
What pillow do chiropractors recommend?
Chiropractors recommend foam pillows because they mold to the contours of your head and neck, providing support where it’s needed. Plus, these types of pillows make life easier for people with arthritis; because you don’t need to exert as much pressure to keep your head and neck in place, this can help reduce stiffness and pain.
How should pillows for neck pain be positioned?
The best position for neck pain is sleeping on your back. This allows your spine and head to remain in alignment and supports both sides of your neck evenly.
If you prefer sleeping on your side or stomach, try using a thin pillow or rolled-up towel behind your neck so that it’s not pressing down uncomfortably from an unnatural angle.
What to Consider When Purchasing a Pillow for Neck Pain?
There are many different types of pillows available to treat neck pain. However, not all these options are suitable for everyone – so knowing what you want your pillow to do is important. Do you need support to keep your neck in the correct place?
Or do you prefer a soft pillow that molds against your head and neck? You may also want to consider how much maintenance or effort you’re willing to put into keeping your pillow clean – down-filled pillows, for instance, can be difficult to clean!
What type of pillow suits your sleeping style?
- Side sleepers: Pillows that are thin but firm are good for side sleepers. They provide support without the extra bulk, which can make it difficult to get comfortable.
- Stomach sleepers: People who sleep on their stomachs tend to like thinner pillows because they don’t put as much pressure on your spine when compared to thicker pillows.
- Back sleepers: A memory foam pillow is ideal for back sleepers because it provides support without the extra weight, so it’s easy to get comfortable.
- Combination sleepers: Try a pillow with a down-filled insert to support your neck and head. This may be ideal for people who change positions during the night, as it can be adjusted accordingly.
Other things to consider before buying
- Hypoallergenic or anti-allergy: If you have allergies or are sensitive to specific materials, it’s a good idea to look for hypoallergenic pillows. This means that the pillow itself doesn’t cause allergic reactions and is an ideal choice if you suffer from nasal congestion, blocked sinuses, or asthma.
- Maintenance: If you want a plump pillow every morning, choose one with synthetic fillings – this lets some airflow through the filling so it isn’t as difficult to fluff up again after use.
- Eco-friendliness: Look for pillows that are manufactured using sustainable, eco-friendly materials – this ensures that nothing is wasted or harmful to the environment.
- Cooling: A pillow helps air circulate around your head and neck, keeping it cool during sleep.
- Anti-snore: If you snore, there are pillows that put support beneath your neck and reduce the airways around the mouth.
- Your other bedding: If you’re looking for an entire bedding set, choose one that’s designed to work in harmony. For example, if you opt for a foam topper then your mattress cover should be made from the same material too.
How Much Should I Spend on My Pillow?
You don’t need to spend hundreds of pounds on a new pillow because it isn’t essential to your health like other items such as mattresses.
However, you do want comfort and support to help with neck pain or sleep problems so it may be worth spending more than £10-£25 on a firm pillow or around £10-£30 for something softer.
How firm should a pillow be to help alleviate neck pain?
A study by the University of Stellenbosch in South Africa found that using a softer pillow was better for reducing neck pain than using a firmer pillow. Participants took part in two trials where one group used firm pillows and the other soft ones; they completed questionnaires to assess their level of pain before and after each trial.
After the first night, participants reported feeling less pain when sleeping on soft pillows compared with sleeping on firmer pillows (an average score of 45/100 compared with 50/100). This shows that it is best to use a fairly soft pillow if you suffer from neck pain because this will mould easily around your head and body, providing support without too much pressure on your spine.
However, if you usually sleep on your back a firmer pillow is preferable as you need the support of a slightly thicker pillow.
How often should I change my pillow?
You shouldn’t use the same pillow for years at a time because it won’t provide you with adequate support – this could lead to sore neck or shoulder pain. Using your old pillow may also cause skin problems such as acne or psoriasis, so try to replace it every year if possible.
If you’re worried about allergies, consider replacing your pillows every six months (and wash all bedding once a week) because they can easily become home to dust mites that aggravate asthma and other respiratory conditions.
How long does it take for my new pillow to return to its original shape?
Memory foam is not a natural material so it doesn’t bounce back instantly like latex or feather pillow. You should allow between 15-30 minutes for your pillow to recover its original shape after use, but this time will increase with age.
A new pillow may be quite firm because the chemicals inside are still at their optimum level – over time, the density of these chemicals reduces, making the pillow softer and easier to mould around your head.
What are the advantages of cervical pillows?
Cervical pillows are specialized pillows that support the neck and have a hole in the middle for your head. This can provide extra support because you’re sleeping with your spine in a neutral position – some research even suggests they can help reduce shoulder pain, which is often caused by resting on a pillow under your head while you sleep.
- A study from 2011 found that using these pillows helped improve sleep quality compared to using regular foam or polyester pillows. In this trial, participants slept on each type of pillow for two nights but didn’t know which ones they had been given.
- After each trial, participants completed questionnaires about their general health and sleep quality; they also wore an accelerometer (a device similar to a fit bit) to measure their movements during the night.
- After the first trial, participants reported similar sleep quality scores regardless of which pillow type they used; however, after sleeping on such pillows in the second trial, participants said they felt healthier and had fewer aches and pains compared with when using regular foam or polyester pillows.
These pillows may be more expensive than ordinary pillows but they shouldn’t cause any more back and neck pain because you’re able to adjust them for your own needs (by adding or removing filling).
- They come in a variety of sizes – some are very small so it’s worth checking that you choose one that fits comfortably between your shoulder blades when you lie down. You should also check that you can easily change sleeping positions without your pillow getting in the way.
- Mouldability is another advantage of choosing such pillows over other types – for example, polyester pillows are very firm so they don’t provide much support but foam can easily cushion your head and neck.
However, there’s no clinical evidence to suggest that moldability improves sleep quality or reduces pain.
What are the disadvantages?
These pillows are expensive compared with ordinary pillows – you should expect to pay between $40-100 (£30-£80) depending on size and filling material. You also need to be aware that not all these pillows use traditional foam; instead, some use high-density viscoelastic (in this type of pillow, the chemicals inside are denser to give better support).
Unfortunately, you can’t tell from the outside which type this pillow is made from – although viscoelastic always has a firmer feel and doesn’t recover as well as traditional foam, it still relieves pain compared with regular pillows.
Also, if your neck isn’t well supported while sleeping on your side, you may find yourself turning onto your back to get more comfortable.
Choosing the best pillow for neck and shoulder pain isn’t easy because there’s no clear evidence to suggest that certain types of pillows are better than others.
What we do know is that good-quality pillows provide the right amount of support while you sleep and they should feel comfortable when you rest your head on them.
It’s best to go for a cervical pillow if you prefer sleeping on your side, but don’t think these pillows will cure any neck pain – it’s more likely that they help by supporting your spine and reducing pressure on the nerves that may be causing this pain.