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Pillow Reviews > Memory Foam Pillows
Based on 4,600+ Consumer Experiences
THE GOOD: Often soft yet supportive • above average pain-relief potential • won't clump, shift or develop hollow areas • no fluffing / shaking required.
THE BAD: Initial odor possible • loft and support may not suit individual needs • firmness excessive for some • heat-trap potential.
THE PILLOWS: Memory foam pillows come in many varieties including contoured (shaped for head and neck) and traditional shape. Memory foam consists of millions of spherical open cells made from polyurethane with additional chemicals added to increase density.
The ratings below show how memory foam pillows overall as a group are evaluated by owners. For information on specific brands, see the section following this one.
|Owner satisfaction||c||Memory foam pillows overall as a group have 76% owner satisfaction. ( ) which is slightly below average compared to all pillows overall. Unlike most other pillow types, satisfaction can differ significantly among memory foam pillow brand and model.
|Durability / longevity||c||The pillows overall have about average durability / longevity. They will lose their memory and supportiveness over time. They likely have on average a 2-4 year useful lifespan.|
|Price||c+||The price range is $15-$70. Owners on average paid $41.|
|Less pain||b||17% of owners say their pillow results in less pain, especially neck pain. About 8% of owners, however, say that their pillow causes pain, usually due to excessive firmness or lack of support. The contoured variety has a higher potential to both relieve and cause pain compared to the traditional-shaped variety.|
|Supportive||b||Most owners say that their memory foam pillow provides at least adequate support and holds its shape during the night. Being at least somewhat temperature sensitive, memory foam contours itself to the head and neck.|
|Moldable||d+||A "moldable" pillow is one whose shape can be easily altered or "scrunched" to increase comfort and support. Other pillow types, such as down, perform better than memory foam on this issue.|
|Cuddly||c+||A "cuddly" pillow is one that is soft and huggable, as opposed to hard, rigid, stiff and or heavy. Cuddliness is generally not a clear strength of the pillows. Nevertheless, traditional-shaped memory foam pillows are likely more cuddly than the contoured variety.|
|Contents won't shift / clump||a||A strength of the pillows.|
|Back sleep friendly||B||Loft usually cannot be made lower or higher (by flattening or scrunching) so some back sleepers may be dissatisfied.|
|Stomach sleep friendly||D+||For the pillows overall, loft is often too high to be ideal for stomach sleepers.|
|Side sleep friendly||c+||Loft usually cannot be made lower or higher (by flattening or scrunching) so some side sleepers may be dissatisfied.|
|No initial odor / off gassing||d||Off gassing is the release of a chemical-like smell that occurs due to the manufacturing and / or packaging process. It is the main owner complaint as at least 15% of owners report a significant problem. Off gassing often ends after a few days but can last much longer in some cases. Some owners report returning the pillow because of the persistence and strength of the odor. Reports of headaches, nausea, eye and throat irritation, sweating, sleeplessness and asthma resulting from off gassing occur in about 2% of memory foam pillow owner experiences.|
|Not hot||c-||5% of owners say their memory foam pillow is too warm, which is slightly higher than the rate for most other pillow types.|
|No noise||b||Some covers may make a rustling sound when compressed. The pillows themselves are silent.|
|Fewer allergies||b-||The foam is antimicrobial and resistant to allergens. Dust mites reportedly do not eat the foam but still may live inside to feed on shedded skin cells.|
|No need to fluff / shake||a||No fluffing or shaking needed.|
|Ease of cleaning||C||The covers can usually be machined washed and dried. The pillows themselves should be spot cleaned, not machine washed or dried.|
|Lightweight||c-||As a group, memory foam pillows weigh somewhat above average, usually 2-6 lbs.|
The table below evaluates memory foam pillows with 84% and above owner satisfaction based on a significant sample size.
Important: Information below regarding firmness, loft and sleeping position shows only what tends to be true for most owners. Your personal evaluation may differ.
|Bodipedic Standard Contour||Shredded memory foam||Bodipedic Antimicrobial Molded||Italian 6-inch||conforma||Sleep Joy Visco Fresh|
|Owner Satisfaction (sample)|
|91% (406)||91% (673)||90% (292)||88% (537)
||86% (500)||84% (472)|
||med-firm||varies by owner experience|
|4" (med-low)||4-6" (med-high)||4.5" (med-low)||6" (high)
||5" (med-high)||6" (varies by owner experience)|
|Sleeping Position(s) Best Suited|
|back, perhaps stomach||side, back, perhaps stomach||all||side, back
||side, back||back, side|
|3 lbs/ft||4 lbs/ft (est)||2.5 lbs/ft||4 lbs/ft||3 lbs/ft||4 lbs/ft (est)|
|standard||queen, king||standard, queen, king||queen||queen||standard|
|velour||60% polyester / 40% bamboo||80% cotton, 20% polyester||rayon from bamboo||velour
(% of owners)
|too thin and small (5%), goes flat and lacks support (3%)||lumpy (8%), too thick (6%), odor (6%), too firm (5%), goes flat (5%)||too firm (5%), odor (5%), too thin (4%)||too high / thick (7%), too firm (5%), lacks support (3%)||odor (9%), too thick (7%), too firm (6%)||minty odor (15%) and several conflicting complaints|
|30 day||30 day||30 day||30 day||30 day||30 day|
|contours to head and neck||shredded foam easier to shape and scrunch. little heat retention.||anti microbial not unique to this pillow||sides of cover have different textures||Certipur- US certified||contours to head and neck; highly ventilated|
* 4 lbs/ft density may offer somewhat more contouring and molding support than 2.5 or 3 lbs/ft.
Ratings are based on 4,600+ memory foam bed pillow owner reviews and experiences that were collected using an accurate research methodology.
Sleep Like The Dead receives NO compensation of any kind from any company, organization or individual to affect in any way or degree the content of our bed pillow research findings.
– Memory foam pillows overall perform better than average on the issue of pain relief. About 17% of owners report a pain-relief benefit, including reduced neck pain.
– At least 15% of memory foam pillow owners report substantial off gassing. Off gassing is the release of a chemical-like smell that occurs when the pillow is new.
– Off gassing usually stops after a few days but can persist for weeks or even months in some cases. Whether a memory foam pillow will off gas and the degree to which it does appears to be largely random.
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