If you’re looking for the best orthopedic pillow, know that they come in all shapes and sizes. From pillows that sit snugly between your knees to neck support pillows designed to align your spine, these sleep accessories are often purchased as a way to address pain that’s exacerbated by your current sleep setup. Before buying, however, be sure to speak with a doctor if you’re experiencing chronic pain. With that said, let’s get into some of our favorite orthopedic pillows.
Best Orthopedic Pillows
- Best Orthopedic Neck Pillow – TEMPUR-Neck Pillow
- Best for Orthopedic Pillow for Side Sleepers – Brooklyn Bedding Pillow
- Best Adjustable Orthopedic Pillow – Lagoon Fox Pillow
- Best for Orthopedic Pillow for Shoulder Pain – Puffy Pillow
- Best Memory Foam Orthopedic Pillow – Brooklinen Marlow Pillow
- Best Ergonomic Pillow – Eli & Elm Cotton Side-Sleeper Pillow
- Best Organic Pillow – Avocado Organic Latex Wedge Pillow
- Best Body Pillow – Buffy Body Pillow
- Best Leg Pillow – Coop Four Position Adjustable Support Pillow
Best Neck Pillow – TEMPUR-Neck Pillow
The TEMPUR-Neck is a molded memory foam pillow with an ergonomic shape designed to follow the natural curvature of the body.
3.90 / 5Read Full Review
Tempur-Pedic has been a major player in the sleep industry for decades due to its TEMPUR material — a proprietary memory foam that has its roots in NASA technology. Denser and more moldable than standard memory foam, the material can be found in the brand’s u-shaped neck pillow.
- The unique “U” shape adapts to the natural curves of your head, neck, and shoulders.
- The Tempur-Pedic TEMPUR-Neck pillow is designed for back and side sleepers who need extra help maintaining healthy posture.
- Overall, this is a firm, contouring pillow.
- Tempur-Pedic pillows can be expensive, but they come with a five-year warranty that’s worth the investment.
If you’re curious to learn more about this accessory, be sure to check our full Tempur-Pedic pillows review.
Best for Side Sleepers – Brooklyn Bedding Shredded Foam Pillow
Brooklyn Bedding Shredded Foam Pillow
The Brooklyn Bedding Premium Shredded Foam Pillow with Cooling Cover combines cloud-like comfort with personal customization for every type of sleeper.
4.60 / 5
This pillow comes with a zippered cover that allows you to adjust the filling — a blend of deconstructed latex and memory foam — to your individual comfort. Side sleepers should appreciate the pillow as is, but sleepers of all preferences and positions should also be able to find their ideal loft and firmness.
- Overall, this pillow has a plush feel — another reason why it’s so immediately appealing to side sleepers.
- It has cooling gel infused into the memory foam, allowing it to be more breathable than other memory foam pillows on the market.
- The Brooklyn Bedding Premium Shredded Foam Pillow is a more affordable option. It also comes with a 30-day trial and a three-year warranty.
- If you’re looking for a dense, firmer pillow option, then this may not be the best pick for you.
Full review coming soon.
Best Adjustable – Lagoon Fox Pillow
Lagoon Fox Pillow
This adjustable pillow allows you to add or subtract the fill until you find the right height and firmness level.Read Full Review
With a personalized sleep quiz and pillows tailored to sleepers’ individual preferences, Lagoon has been all about customization from the get-go. The Lagoon Fox Pillow is fully adjustable, and its core layer of memory foam blended with polyester offers an optimal amount of comfort and support for those who struggle with back pain.
- This high-performance pillow is built with memory foam and polyester microfibers — materials that lend themselves well to both pressure relief and support.
- The cover is made with bamboo and polyester, which helps the pillow stay cool and breathable.
- It’s hypoallergenic, and the entire pillow is machine washable.
- The pillow is $119 to $139, but it comes with a 100-night sleep trial and a five-year warranty if you don’t find it to be worth the price.
Learn more about the Fox in our full review of several Lagoon pillows.
Best for Shoulder Pain – Puffy Pillow
The Puffy Pillow is a great choice for sleepers looking for a pillow with customizable comfort, targeted support, and allergy-friendly properties.
4.90 / 5Read Full Review
Filled with removable memory foam, you can adjust the Puffy Pillow’s loft to your liking. That means anyone struggling with shoulder pain can simply take off the cover, unzip the inner sleeve, and add or subtract the fill until they find the comfort and pressure relief they desire.
- Thanks to the adjustability, the Puffy Pillow should accommodate back sleepers, side sleepers, and stomach sleepers alike.
- With a cover made from a special blend of hypoallergenic polyester and bamboo rayon, the pillow is a great option for sleepers with allergies.
- This pillow is made with premium CertiPUR-US memory foam, meaning it’s free from any harmful chemicals. It’s also OEKO-TEX STANDARD 100 Certified.
- While the Puffy Pillow may be a tad pricey for some folks at $79–$99, it comes with a lifetime warranty and an extra-sweet 101-night trial period.
Puff up your knowledge of the Puffy Pillow in our full review.
Best Memory Foam Pillow – Brooklinen Marlow Pillow
Brooklinen Marlow Pillow
The Marlow pillow from Brooklinen is filled with shredded foam and polyester fiber fill and uses a zippered design to offer an adjustable feel.
4.20 / 5Read Full Review
If you’re looking for a foam orthopedic pillow, the Marlow pillow from Brooklinen is filled with memory foam and polyester fibers. It’s a medium-firm pillow, but there are zippers on each side and when the zippers are undone, the pillow becomes more plush.
- The pillow has a breathable cover made of 100 percent cotton with a sateen weave. When you unzip the pillow, you’ll find a lining of 100 percent polyester mesh.
- You can opt for a standard or king-size pillow when ordering.
- Though you can’t add or remove the foam, the zipper option may allow this pillow to work for a variety of sleepers.
- If you’re looking for more options for adjustability, you may want to consider checking out our reviews of the best adjustable pillows.
Discover more in our full Brooklinen Marlow Pillow review.
Best Ergonomic Pillow – Eli & Elm Cotton Side-Sleeper Pillow
Eli & Elm Side-Sleeper Pillow
The Eli & Elm side sleeper pillow is one of the best pillows for side sleepers. It’s constructed in a unique u-shape to support side sleepers’ heads and necks and reduce shoulder pain.
4.30 / 5Read Full Review
The Eli & Elm Cotton Side-Sleeper Pillow is immediately recognizable for its unique shape. Ergonomically designed, it has a u-shaped space at the bottom where you can comfortably rest your head. This helps support your neck and cushion your shoulders, which can go a long way toward reducing shoulder pain.
- True to its name, this pillow is designed specifically for side sleepers. The u-shape leaves just enough room to cradle their neck and shoulder area while they sleep.
- Back sleepers should also be comfortable on the Eli & Elm pillow.
- If you suffer from allergies, take note: this pillow is hypoallergenic, in addition to being antimicrobial, dust mite-resistant, and mildew-proof.
- We wouldn’t recommend this pillow for stomach sleepers. They’ll most likely need something flatter to keep their spine neutrally aligned.
Learn about all that this sleep accessory has to offer in our full Eli & Elm Cotton Side-Sleeper Pillow review.
Best Organic Pillow – Avocado Organic Latex Wedge Pillow
Avocado Organic Latex Wedge Pillow
This environmentally friendly pillow is ultra-breathable and offers plenty of support.
Don’t be deceived by the simple design of this wedge pillow from Avocado. You can use it in four different positions — each one responding to a different type of orthopedic pain. For instance, resting it behind your head can help align the spine and address upper back pain. But you can also place it against a wall or your headboard while you sit up, which cushions the lumbar region.
No matter how you use the Avocado Organic Latex Wedge Pillow, you can rest assured that, per the brand’s mission, it’s been sustainably crafted. Avocado is a carbon-neutral company, and this sleep accessory’s credentials include GOTS-certified cotton for the cover and inner liner, as well as 100 percent GOLS-certified organic latex.
- You can also use the Avocado as a leg pillow.
- If you’re typing on a laptop, you can rest it on the pillow, which will encourage you to sit up straight.
- It’s available in both a 7-inch and a 10-inch loft.
- Latex tends to be a little pricier than other materials, so this pillow isn’t cheap. It usually runs between $179 and $199.
Full review coming soon!
Best Body Pillow – Buffy Body Pillow
Buffy Body Pillow
Sleepers of all positions can wrap themselves around this full body pillow and enjoy its soft, breathable Tencel cover.
For some sleepers, orthopedic pain isn’t always confined to one part of the body. These folks may want to consider the Buffy Body Pillow, which has a flexible structure and extra length that allows you to cushion many different joints and muscles at once. This versatility is meant to cater to side sleepers, back sleepers, and stomach sleepers alike.
- The pillow’s fill consists of extra-soft recycled fluff that should give you a cushy sinking feeling when you lie down on it or hug it.
- The shell is woven from Tencel — a material that usually sleeps nice and cool.
- A full-body pillow is usually an excellent choice for pregnant women.
- Buffy recommends that you dry-clean the pillow, so you won’t be able to wash it at home.
Full review coming soon.
Best Leg Pillow – Coop Four Position Adjustable Support Pillow
Coop Four-Position Adjustable Support Pillow
This sturdy sleep accessory can be used in a variety of ways, from a leg pillow to upright lumbar support.
If you experience back pain, keeping your legs elevated while you sleep can take pressure off of your spine and provide some relief. The Coop Four Position Adjustable Support Pillow is a great way to do this. Simply place its solid memory foam structure under your knees to keep your legs comfortably lifted.
- Per its name, you can use this pillow in several other positions, including placing it behind your lower back for lumbar support while you sit.
- It comes with a removable one-inch insert so you can change the pillow’s height.
- Its Lulltra cover is machine-washable.
- You probably won’t be able to use it as a regular pillow when sleeping. Then again, it wasn’t designed for that.
Full review coming soon.
How We Selected the Best Orthopedic Pillows
Finding the right orthopedic pillow for your needs will largely depend on what you’re trying to treat. Some pillows are designed to specifically address sciatic nerve pain, while others are made to promote spinal alignment in your neck. And others might just have an adjustable or flexible design that offers orthopedic comfort. Speaking to a doctor will help pinpoint what type of pillow you should be looking for, but as a general overview, here are some of the things we considered in our selection process.
- Multiple Height and Size Options: The thickness and size of a pillow is of the utmost importance to promoting proper spinal alignment. We tended to favor pillows that allow you to customize size. Pillows with removable foam inserts, varying contour sizes, or different pillow size options are all perfect for picking the right thickness.
- Breathability and Sensitivity: This is a pillow, so as well as providing adequate support, it’s important that it’s soft and pressure-relieving. We favored memory foam that doesn’t overheat and features a cover made of comfortable material that can be removed and washed.
- Firmness: Generally speaking, the firmness of a pillow is variable based on individual needs. For orthopedic pillows, however, there’s a baseline level of firmness and support that should be present to encourage proper alignment. In this list, we tended to favor pillows that were soft yet supportive.
Tips on Choosing the Right Orthopedic Pillow
Finding the right orthopedic pillow for your needs can change your life. That seems like an overstatement, but reducing pain in your neck, back, hip, knee, or any other part of your body that’s aching can impact your entire outlook. We recommend consulting a doctor to truly identify the source of any pain, but if you’re in the market for an orthopedic pillow, here are some things to consider.
- What the Pillow is Designed For: Choosing an orthopedic pillow is dependent on what part of your body is hurting. If you’re a side sleeper who’s experiencing lower back pain, maybe look into a knee pillow. Similarly, look to specific neck pillows if your neck is the pain point. There are a lot of specific products on the market built to address specific pain, so don’t settle on a general pillow and expect it to fix all that ails you.
- Pillow Material and Skin Sensitivity: Orthopedic pillows can be made from a number of materials, and can have pillowcases made of even more. Take note of the type of foam; if a pillow’s not made of a breathable material, it may get hot throughout the night. And, if the pillowcase is made of an artificial fabric it may be an irritant to sensitive skin,
Recapping the Top Orthopedic Pillows
Turning to an orthopedic pillow is a great step towards a healthier and more therapeutic sleep regiment. They can help alleviate pain in multiple parts of the body, and promote improved spinal alignment and posture during sleep. Everyone’s orthopedic pillow solution will be different, but finding the right one for you can make all the difference.