Are Feather Pillows Good For Side Sleepers?

Key Takeaways
Feather pillows can be beneficial for side sleepers if chosen with the right loft and firmness.
Feather pillows may require more care and are not suitable for everyone, especially allergy sufferers.
Down pillows are softer and offer better insulation, while feather pillows offer substantial support.

Hello there, dreamers! I’m Lewis, your go-to sleep and bedding expert from Dream HQ.

Today, let’s debunk the mystery surrounding feather pillows and their suitability for side sleepers. Ready to dive in? Buckle up, it’s about to get comfy!

Feather Pillows: Yay or Nay for Side Sleepers?

As many of our Dream HQ pillow enthusiasts know, the secret to a good night’s sleep lies in aligning the mysterious triad of your head, neck, and spine. And guess what? Feather pillows might just be your cosy ally here!

With their knack for filling up that tricky area between your shoulder’s crown and your head, they offer the support you need while you dream away on your side.

Did you know? During the Middle Ages in Europe, pillows were deemed a luxury item and were banned. Only pregnant women were exempt from this rule under King Henry VIII's reign.

However, the real magic lies in the details. Not all feather pillows are created equal – and your perfect match depends on their loft and firmness.

What’s your loft type?

Side sleepers, rejoice! A thicker, firmer pillow is your ticket to dreamland. Lower lofts? Well, they’re more up the alley for our back or stomach sleeper friends. Make sure to browse our comprehensive guide on how to choose a feather pillow for more details!

Feathered Friends or Foes?

Feather pillows are often portrayed as the antagonists for our allergy-prone buddies, noise-sensitive sleepers, and vegan consumers. But, how much of that is true? Check out our article on feather pillows and allergies for a deep dive into the topic!

Feather Pillows for Cuddlers

Are you one of those sleepers who love to cuddle their pillow? We see you. Feather pillows just might be your perfect bed partner.

Dream HQ’s Recommendations

We, at Dream HQ, like to sleep on our research and give you only the best. Here are our top picks:

  1. Saatva Latex Pillow: Loved for its adjustable loft that can be customised for your unique sleep style and bouncy feel for stellar support.
  2. Parachute Down Pillow: This beauty is a favourite among our stomach sleepers for its soft plushiness. The medium and firm options also come with a feather-blend inner pillow for support and a down-filled outer layer for comfort.

For more information about these pillows, head over to these expert reviews: Healthline, The Spruce.

Here’s a quick comparison:

Pillow TypeBest for…
Saatva Latex PillowSide sleepers needing customisable loft & bouncy support
Parachute Down PillowStomach sleepers seeking soft plushiness & side sleepers needing a balance of support and comfort

The Flip Side: Potential Downsides Of Feather Pillows For Side Sleepers

While feather pillows do have their merits, it wouldn’t be fair if we didn’t discuss some potential downsides, would it? Let’s get into the nitty-gritty!

1. Shape Holding & Maintenance

  • Feather pillows, unlike their down counterparts, might struggle to hold their shape, especially for those who tend to shuffle about in their sleep.

  • Feather pillows require a bit more TLC to maintain their loft and firmness. Regular fluffing is the name of the game!
A white pillow in on a white bed in a well lit room

2. Not for Everyone

  • Allergy sufferers or folks who prefer vegan products, beware! Feather pillows might not be your cup of tea.
  • Love a pillow that’s as soft as a cloud? Feather pillows might disappoint with their firmness.

Still, remember feather pillows are not to be ruled out completely. They’re a fantastic option for those in search of a firmer and more supportive pillow. Feather pillows easily fold to fit snugly under the neck, providing the necessary support for the head, neck, and spine.

3. The Right Pick for Side Sleepers

  • For side sleepers, look for a thicker, firmer feather pillow with a high fill power rating of 650 or higher to properly support your head and maintain spinal alignment.

Here’s a comparison table to help you make an informed decision:

ConsiderationsFeather Pillows
Shape HoldingMay struggle to hold shape; Requires regular fluffing
SuitabilityNot ideal for allergy sufferers or vegan product preferers; Firmer than down pillows
Side Sleeper SupportGood support with high fill power rating (650 or higher)

Choosing the Perfect Feather Pillow: Loft & Firmness

Side sleepers, listen up! It’s time to delve into the nitty-gritty of choosing the right loft and firmness for your feather pillow. Buckle up; we’re going on a comfort ride!

1. The Thicker, the Better

Yes, size matters! Side sleepers usually benefit from thicker, firmer pillows. The trick? Find a pillow that fills that gap between your shoulder’s crown and your head. The result? Optimal support for your head, neck, and spine.

2. Adjustable Loft Pillows: A Side Sleeper’s Dream

Pillows like the Saatva Latex Pillow let you customise the thickness. Why is this fantastic? Because you get the perfect amount of cushioning for your head and neck without the dreaded sinking sensation.

3. Firmness Levels: Options Galore

Soft, medium, firm, extra firm – the world of feather pillows has a plethora of firmness levels. As a side sleeper, you’d generally lean towards a firmer pillow. But remember, everyone’s unique, so you might need to test drive different firmness levels to find your perfect match.

4. Fill Power Rating: The Magic Number

Look for feather pillows with a high fill power rating of 650 or higher. Why? Because a thicker pillow with a high fill power can work wonders for side sleepers.

5. Personal Preferences: You Do You

At the end of the day, your perfect pillow depends on your personal preferences and sleeping position. It’s a journey, folks, so be ready to test different pillows to find your dream match.

Let’s summarise the keys to choosing the right feather pillow for side sleepers:

ConsiderationsFeather Pillows for Side Sleepers
ThicknessThicker, firmer pillows are beneficial
Adjustable Loft PillowsPillows like the Saatva Latex Pillow are ideal for customising thickness
Firmness LevelTry different firmness levels; Side sleepers typically prefer firmer pillows
Fill Power RatingOpt for high fill power rating of 650 or higher
Personal PreferencesConsider your sleeping position and personal comfort preferences

Down vs Feather Pillows: A Comfortable Conundrum

Down or feather? Feather or down? If you’re wrestling with this pillow predicament, you’re in the right place! Let’s unravel the mystery of these popular sleep aids.

1. Down Pillows: The Luxurious Sleep Partner

Down pillows have the underbelly feather clusters from geese and ducks gracing their interiors. What does that mean for you?

  • They are softer, fluffier, and lighter in weight compared to their feathered counterparts.
  • They mold to the shape of your head, neck, and shoulders for that luxurious feel.
  • Down pillows offer better insulation and warmth. Perfect for chilly nights!
  • But remember, luxury comes at a price, so down pillows are usually pricier. Plus, they need a bit more TLC in the maintenance department.

2. Feather Pillows: The Sturdy Supporter

Feather pillows have quill-featuring feathers from the wings and backs of birds.

  • They’re firmer, flatter, and denser, giving you substantial support throughout the night.
  • Wallet-friendly, feather pillows are less expensive than down pillows.
  • If you’re someone who tends to overheat during the night, feather pillows might be your cool companion. They retain less heat!
  • Feather pillows are a little less needy and demand less care.

Let’s summarise:

Pillow TypeCharacteristics
Down PillowsSofter, fluffier, and lighter. Molds to the shape of your body. Better insulation. More expensive. Requires more maintenance.
Feather PillowsFirmer, flatter, and denser. More substantial support. Retains less heat. Less expensive. Requires less maintenance.


What kind of pillow should a side sleeper use?

Side sleepers should opt for a firmer, thicker pillow. The perfect pillow would fill the gap between the head and shoulder, ensuring proper alignment of the neck and spine during sleep.

What are the disadvantages of feather pillows?

Feather pillows may not hold shape well and require regular fluffing. They’re not ideal for allergy sufferers or vegans and can be firmer than other types, potentially offering less softness and plushness.

Is it healthy to sleep on a feather pillow?

Sleeping on a feather pillow can be healthy as long as you aren’t allergic and it provides the right support for your sleeping position. Good spinal alignment and comfort are key for healthy sleep.

Do side sleepers need firm or soft pillow?

Side sleepers typically need a firmer pillow. The firmness provides support to maintain the natural alignment of the neck and spine, which is essential for restful and pain-free sleep.

How firm should a pillow be for side sleepers?

A pillow for side sleepers should be firm enough to keep the neck aligned with the spine. It should fill the gap between the shoulder and head to provide proper support and promote better sleep.

Parting Thoughts

So, there you have it, folks! We’ve delved deep into the fluffy world of feather pillows and their suitability for side sleepers. From understanding the specifics of loft and firmness to weighing up the pros and cons, we’ve covered all the pillow-talk essentials. Whether you’re deciding between a down and a feather pillow, or simply wanting to explore the mysteries of fill power rating, we’ve had it all:

  • Uncovered the differences between down and feather pillows
  • Discussed the potential downsides to using feather pillows for side sleepers
  • Shared tips on choosing the right loft and firmness for a feather pillow as a side sleeper
  • Answered some FAQs to dispel any lingering uncertainties

Make sure to explore our detailed articles for more information about feather pillows and their impacts on allergies, how to maintain their fresh smell, and even the process of making a feather pillow. All the information you need can be found right here at Dream HQ.

May your sleep be peaceful and your pillows always plush! Goodnight, from all of us at Dream HQ.

– Article by Lewis Hugh

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