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- Coop Home Goods/Business Insider
Gel pillows are ideal for people who need extra support to deal with neck and back pain, as well as for people who run hot but like to sleep cool.
The Coop Home Goods Eden Gel Foam Pillow is our top pick, thanks to its support and cooling and because it can be adjusted for ideal custom comfort.
I can’t speak for you, but I’ll say that the first time I lay my head down on a gel pillow, I wasn’t immediately sold. Far from it, in fact. Upon initial contact, many gel pillows feel too firm and even a bit unusual, with a rubbery texture that’s a far cry from the feathers or fabric stuffing to which most of us are accustomed.
But then my head settled down into the foam, and soon I found myself feeling a level of comfort and support almost unknown in those low-tech pillows I’d used all my life. Also, I who fog up car windows and often sleep without even sheets while my wife is under a down comforter stayed relatively cool throughout hours of use.
So while standard pillows feel soft and snuggly at once, they don’t offer much actual neck and back support and they often heat up. Gel pillows tend to hold their shape, offering all-night support, and they stay relatively cool thanks to the gel’s propensity to draw heat in and away from your body.
Are there drawbacks? Sure. Each time you shift with most gel foam pillows, you need a moment to sink in again to reestablish ideal comfort. And also some of them are a bit pricey. Do the benefits way outweigh those minor issues? Oh yeah. At least, if hours of comfortable sleep followed by a day during which you feel well-rested matters much to you.
In selecting the best gel pillows you can buy, we factored in everything from price to shape to intended use. Some are ideal for cervical support (spinal support, e.g.), while some are great at keeping you cool. Others still have all the bases covered, though you’ll need to pay for that level of quality and capability.
Here are the best gel pillows you can buy:
- Best gel pillow overall: Coop Home Goods Eden Gel Foam Pillow
- Best gel pillow for side sleepers: Tempur-Pedic TEMPUR-Contour Breeze Side-to-Side Pillow
- Best low-cost gel pillow: PharMeDoc Contour Cooling Foam Pillow
- Best gel pillow for hot sleepers: Classic Brands Cool Sleep Ventilated Gel Pillow
- Best gel pillow for neck pain: Product Stop Cooling Gel Neck and Back Pain Pillow
Read on in the slides below to check out our top picks.
The best gel pillow overall
- Coop Home Goods
Why you’ll love it: The Coop Home Goods Eden Gel Foam Pillow is comfortable, cooling, and customizable – you can remove its filling until it’s just the right density for your preference.
The Coop Home Goods Eden Gel Foam Pillow is sort of a best of both worlds situation. Most gel foam pillows are essentially solid blocks of viscoelastic memory foam that either have a layer of cooling gel material or that have gel infused into the foam itself.
This unique gel pillow does indeed use a gel-infused memory foam, but it’s not a solid block of the material. Rather, the pillow is stuffed with hundreds of little bits of gel foam, thus the best of both worlds. When you first put your head down on this pillow, you will settle into it much like with a feather or synthetic fill pillow.
So comfort right off the bat? Check. The more time you spend lying down with your head, neck, and shoulders on the Coop Home Goods Eden Gel Foam Pillow, the more you’ll start to realize that gel foam isn’t just a term bandied about by the fat cats in the pillow industry. This stuff actually does draw more heat away from your body than feathers or polyester could ever hope to.
Thanks to the shredded gel memory foam fill, the airflow throughout this pillow is unrivaled. Thus you enjoy that immediate comfort and all night cooling.
With more than 400 reviews logged on Amazon at the time of this writing, the Coop Home Goods Eden Gel Foam Pillow has a solid 4.4-star rating. One shopper speaks for many when she calls it the “best pillow” she has “ever owned,” saying they help her and her husband “sleep all night and wake up without any aches or stiffness.”
A writer from RealMattressReviews loved that users can “adjust the fill” to create ideal custom comfort and noted the “lighter, fluffier feel” of this pillow compared to most gel pillows.
Pros: Custom adjustable fill, immediately comfortable, backed by satisfaction guarantee
Cons: Less supportive than solid pillows
The best gel pillow for side sleepers
Why you’ll love it: If you sleep on your side, your head and neck need a specific kind of support for comfort, and the Tempur-Pedic TEMPUR-Contour Breeze Side-to-Side Pillow provides it perfectly.
When you sleep on your side, you are asking a lot of your spine in the name of comfort. In fact, you are asking your spin to align itself in a way that it doesn’t really want to align, namely bent sideways at the neck. This hardly bothers some people, but for others it can cause pain both acute and chronic.
But if sleep on your side you must, whether for everyday comfort, during pregnancy, or after an accident that requires specific positioning during recovery, do your spine a favor and get the Tempur-Pedic TEMPUR-Contour Breeze Side-to-Side Pillow.
With your head and neck cradled by the Tempur-Pedic TEMPUR-Contour Breeze Side-to-Side Pillow, a pillow purpose-built for supporting side sleepers, your spinal column will be kept in line and without undue stress.
Beyond cervical ergonomics, your head will sink down into the memory foam and be cradled all night long. Also, a layer of cooling gel set near the surface of the pillow will keep you nice and cool during all those hours of ergonomic spine support.
Most shoppers who chose this pillow were thrilled with their choice. An owner named Penny called it “supportive and comfortable” and said it far outperformed others she had tried, while a gentleman named Bruce said it helped him “maintain a straight neckline” all night long.
A writer from NYMag called the Tempur-Pedic TEMPUR-Contour Breeze Side-to-Side Pillow loved the “cooling gel layer” that served “hot-headed sleepers” so well.
Pros: Provides ergonomic spinal support, lasts for multiple years, washable knit cover
Cons: Quite expensive, too firm for some users
The best low-cost gel pillow
Why you’ll love it: The PharMeDoc Contour Cooling Foam Pillow will keep you cool and supported for about half the cost of most comparable gel pillows.
How can the PharMeDoc Contour Cooling Foam Pillow cost only 20 bucks, about half the price of many comparable gel pillows – and less than a quarter of the price of some options on our list – yet still provide decent neck support and cooling? Well, it’s a bit on the small side, at 14 inches by 20 inches. And it’s too firm for some people. All in all, though, this pillow punches well above its price point.
Its gel-infused memory foam offers excellent head and neck support, and its two long axis have slightly different heights – four inches and five inches – so you can choose the rise that best suits your neck.
Also, unless you need to constantly move around to achieve ideal comfort or you have a particularly large head, the fact that this pillow is smaller than standard pillow size isn’t much of a problem, and you’ll soon get used to it. Besides, in case this part isn’t crystal clear yet … it costs less than 20 dollars.
Most reviews of the PharMeDoc Contour Cooling Foam Pillow are glowing, such as that left by a customer named Elsie who called it “just right” for providing the “support [she] needed as a side/back sleeper.”
A number of people did note its smaller size, though, which can be an issue when pairing it with standard pillowcases.
Pros: Great low price tag, two height options, supports neck and head
Cons: Notably smaller than standard pillow
The best gel pillow for hot sleepers
- Classic Brands
Why you’ll love it: If you often wake up hot and sweaty, then you owe it to yourself to invest in the Classic Brands Cool Sleep Ventilated Gel Pillow.
Many nights when my wife and I bed down together, I’m wearing only a pair of boxers, while she is wearing a long sleeve t-shirt, pajama pants, and socks. And often, I awake in the middle of the night too warm for comfort despite finding that I have kicked the comforter off my body and have worked the sheet down off most of my torso. Next to me, she’ll be burrowed down under the sheet, comforter, and with pillows piled on either side.
Human physiology varies from person to person – that’s the takeaway here. And that’s why I’m a fan of the Classic Brands Cool Sleep Ventilated Gel Pillow.
First off, this pillow provides the support and comfort you expect of memory foam. You sink into it slowly and steadily, and then your head is cradled until you shift. The fact that said memory foam is infused with a cooling gel that readily absorbs and redistributes endothermic body heat is the second plus.
But what truly sets this pillow apart from other gel pillows are the multiple channels that perforate the foam and that allow air to circulate throughout the pillow. Most gel pillows can draw off some heat but then essentially hold onto it, albeit holding it removed from your person. This pillow can actively dissipate heat and bring cool air thanks to the many channels bored into the foam.
With more than 800 reviews on Amazon, the Classic Brands Cool Sleep Ventilated Gel Pillow has a decent 3.6-star average at the time of this writing, with most complaints referring to its hardness on initial contact. I’ll gently rejoin that this is what one must expect with all memory foam pillows, but people can say what they will. My own sentiments are echoed by a customer who called it an “awesome memory foam pillow” that was not only cooling, but also “helped with [his] neck pain.”
A writer from Health called this gel pillow “ventilated for optimal air flow” and “good choice for side and back sleepers.”
Pros: Excellent cooling properties, good for side or back sleeping, hypoallergenic materials
Cons: To dense feeling for some people
The best gel pillow for neck pain
- Product Stop
Why you’ll love it: The Product Stop Cooling Gel Neck and Back Pain Pillow features multiple contour angles designed to keep your neck and spine aligned and your head cradled and supported all night long.
Here’s the deal: if you don’t suffer from neck, shoulder, or spinal pain, you should probably not consider the Product Stop Cooling Gel Neck and Back Pain Pillow. If you do suffer from neck, shoulder, or spinal pain, then by all means consider it. And if you have pains in said regions and you tend to run hot, then by all means buy this thing and meet your cervical support needs while also cooling things down.
I say to avoid considering this pillow if you don’t have neck pain because the highly specific design of the pillow limits its versatility. The Product Stop Cooling Gel Neck and Back Pain Pillow features a depression in the center of its mass that compels your head to lie still right in the middle of the pillow, with your spine held at just the right neutral, straight positioning while you’re on your side.
If you want to sleep on your back or stomach, you’ll be less comfortable with this pillow than with another option. But if you want a supported spine, get this thing, sleep on your side, and also enjoy the cooling created by the layer of gel over the upper surface of the unit.
While dozens and dozens customers have left reviews about how the Product Stop Cooling Gel Neck and Back Pain Pillow helps reduce spinal discomfort, a lady named Debby made a point many people might well note when she called it “excellent for women going through menopause,” saying the supportive pillow keeps her comfortable even during hot flashes.
A write up from SleepAdvisor said the Product Stop Cooling Gel Neck and Back Pain Pillow provides “excellent support all night long” and noted how well the “cooling gel pillow disperses heat.”
Pros: Excellent spinal alignment and neck support, effective cooling layer, good price point
Cons: Not comfortable for back or stomach sleeping
Check out our other bedding buying guides
Weighted blankets provide an evenly distributed amount of pressure and steady sensory input that help ease anxiety and stress, allowing you to sleep better.
Here at Insider Picks, we take our sleep seriously. That’s why we’ve done the research and trawled through hundreds of buyer and expert reviews to find with the best weighted blankets you can buy. Whether you are in the market for a hypoallergenic option or one that keeps you cool throughout the night, these weighted blankets will help you sleep soundly.
Here are the best weighted blankets you can buy:
- Best weighted blanket overall: Gravity Blanket
- Best cooling weighted blanket: YnM Cooling Weighted Blanket
- Best hypoallergenic weighted blanket: Good Knight Weighted Blanket
- Best dual-sided weighted blanket: Calmforter Weighted Blanket
- Best weighted blanket for kids: Quility Premium Kids Weighted Blanket
A good pillow means a good night’s sleep. We reviewed dozens of pillows to narrow down the choices to the ones you’ll love best.
While ultimately, there is no “best for everyone” pillow – personal preference plays a huge part in determining the pillow you’ll like the most – we checked out all the top recommendations from consumer buying websites, listened to what pillow buyers had to say, and even tried out some of the pillows ourselves to bring you the five picks most likely to send you off to the land of Nod comfortably.
Here are our top picks for the best pillows:
- Best overall: Coop Home Goods Adjustable Shredded Memory Foam Pillow
- Best hybrid pillow: Leesa Hybrid Pillow
- Best down pillow: Royal Hotel Goose Down Pillow
- Best luxurious pillow: Saatva Pillow
- Best buckwheat hull pillow: Zen Chi Buckwheat Hull Pillow
- Best budget pillow: Smart Home Bedding Super Plush Pillow
- Best memory foam pillow: Sleep Innovations Cool Contour Memory Foam Pillow
- Best bolster pillow: Half-Moon Bolster Pillow
- Best latex pillow: Beautyrest Latex Foam Pillow
- Best gel pillow: Beckham Hotel Collection Gel Pillow
- Best body pillow: Snuggle-Pedic Ultra-Luxury Full Body Pillow
Your cozy down-filled duvet needs a stylish cover to keep it clean and add some spice to your bedroom’s décor.
We’ve rounded up the duvet covers likeliest to suit your style, your budget, and your needs.
Here are the best duvet covers you can buy:
- Best duvet cover overall: Brooklinen Classic Duvet Cover
- Best zip-up duvet cover: Crane & Canopy’s Nova Duvet Cover
- Best print duvet cover: Leaves print duvet cover from Word of Dream
- Best striped duvet cover: Damask Stripe Reversible Duvet Cover Set
- Best kids duvet cover: Animal-print Reversible Duvet Cover set from Where the Polka Dots Roam
- Best affordable duvet cover: HC Collection Duvet Cover Set
A great mattress can be the difference between a good night’s sleep that results in a productive day or a horrible night that makes you feel like you didn’t sleep at all.
Here are our top picks for the best mattress you can buy
- Best overall: Sapira Mattress by Leesa and Leesa Mattress
- Best for hot sleepers: Bear Mattress
- Best for neutral firmness: Casper Mattress or the Casper Wave
- Best customizable mattress: Helix Mattress
- Best affordable mattress: Lucid Memory Foam Mattress
- Best smart mattress: Eight Smart Mattress
- Best soft mattress with good support: Purple Mattress
Although a mattress topper isn’t a must-have for your bed, it’s one of the easiest ways to up your sleep quality and comfort. We researched dozens of mattress toppers and determined that these are our favorites:
- Best overall: DreamFoam Bedding Gel Swirl Memory Foam Mattress Topper
- Best featherbed: Super Snooze Baffled Featherbed Set
- Best wool: Overstock’s Lambswool Mattress Pad
- Best affordable: Pinzon Overfilled Microplush Mattress Topper
- Best luxury: Sleep Innovations Dual Layer Mattress Topper Set
Your bed is not only the highlight of your bedroom, it’s the only furniture you spend 33% of your life on. Here are the Insider Picks:
Here are our top picks for the best bed frame:
- Best overall: Zinus Upholstered Square Stitched Platform Bed Frame
- Best for storage: Zinus 14 Inch SmartBase Platform Bed Frame
- Best faux leather frame: DHP Dakota Faux Leather Platform Bed
- Best canopy frame: DHP Rosedale Metal Canopy Bed Frame
- Best platform bed: Murray Platform Bed with Wooden Box Frame
- Best metal and wood frame: Zinus Sonoma Metal & Wood Platform Bed
- Best high-tech frame: Reverie 9T Adjustable Bed Base
- Best simple frame: Casper foundation and frame
Few would deny that at the end of a long, hard day, sliding into a comfortable bed outfitted with soft, smooth sheets that pamper your skin is one of life’s greatest pleasures. After all, you spend nearly a third of your life between those sheets, so why wouldn’t you want the best?
So we’ve made it easy for you: We checked out all the top consumer buying websites, listened to opinions from bed sheet buyers, and tried sheets ourselves to compile our list of the five best bed sheet sets you can buy.
Here are our top picks for the best sheets:
- Best sheets overall: L.L. Bean 280-thread-count Pima Cotton Percale Sheets
- Best sateen sheets: Royal Velvet 400-thread-count WrinkleGuard Sheets
- Best luxurious sheets: Brooklinen Luxe Sheets
- Best budget sheets: Threshold Performance Sheet Set
- Best sheets with patterns and colors: Crane & Canopy Sheet Sets
- Best flannel sheets: Pinzon Velvet Flannel Sheets
- Best organic cotton sheets: Boll & Branch Signature Soft Hemmed Sheet Set
- Best bamboo rayon sheets: Classic Bamboo Sheets from Cariloha
- Best modal sheets: Pure Beech Modal Sateen Sheets
- Best jersey knit sheets: Brielle Cotton Jersey Knit Sheets
- Best Egyptian cotton sheets: Egyptian Cotton Sateen Sheet Set by Chateau Home Collection