Best Pillows For Neck Pain

5 Best Pillows For Neck Pain Right Now

Ian Mutuli
Updated on
Ian Mutuli

Ian Mutuli

Founder and Managing Editor of Archute. He is also a graduate architect from The University of Nairobi, Kenya.
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Should you regularly suffer from neck soreness or ache upon awakening, your pillow might be the source of this discomfort. Neck pain following sleep can occur when your neck is misaligned with your spine, placing undue stress on it while it supports your head, even as your body is in a relaxed state.

When looking for a pillow for neck pain, you should first consider your sleeping style as it has a significant effect on your spine alignment. You are either one of these three sleepers. These sleeping positions require a different kind of pillow for support and prevention of pain and injuries.

  1. Side sleeper. Side sleepers require a firm/thick pillow to keep the neck and spine aligned. Ideally, this pillow should have a loft that equals the distance from shoulder to ear.
  2. Stomach sleeper. Stomach sleepers require a thin pillow that does not over-stretch their neck muscles and also allows easy breathing.
  3. Back sleeper. Back sleepers should get medium pillows that elevate the head to stay in line with the spine.

Good neck and spine alignment

There are some types of pillows you can consult about as well. The most popular are:

  1. Orthopedic pillows or cervical pillows. These are memory foam pillows with a distinctive shape; they have a higher area that supports the neck and a lower area where it supports the head.
  2. Feather pillows and water pillows. These are pillows made with feathers and are perfectly ideal for people who change the three sleeping positions frequently since they can always add or remove some feathers to their liking. Similar to feather pillows, water pillows have sacs filled with water that take the shape of the head while sleeping.
  3. Memory foam pillows. These are pillows filled with memory foam. They conform to the shape of the head and neck to keep it in place.

It is vital to note that not all neck pain is caused by using the wrong pillows. Other factors, such as stress, another existing injury, or underlying illnesses could cause neck pain. While these may require professional treatment, investing in the best pillow will help alleviate the pain, allowing you to sleep better and more comfortably.

This article will discuss the 5 best pillows for neck pain, their features, reasons to buy, and reasons to avoid.

1. Best overall: TEMPUR- Pedic Neck Pillow

Tempur-Pedic Neck Pillow Firm Feel & Ergonomic Design,...
  • Ergonomic shape developed by doctors to promote proper alignment...
  • Designed to allow neck and shoulder muscles to relax completely,...
  • Designed for back or side sleeps for precise alignment
  • Firm, medium pillow measures 20" L x 12" W x 4" H
  • ASSEMBLED IN THE USA - The Tempur-Pedic TEMPUR-Ergo Neck Pillow,...

This cervical support pillow from Tempur Pedic is ultimately the best pillow for back sleepers and side sleepers. It is made with TEMPUR® Material that provides a therapeutic feel to relax and rest your head and neck.

The pillow features a contoured, ergonomic design to follow your body's natural curve and adequately support your neck, head, and shoulders as you sleep.

This pillow comes in three sizes from small to large, between 20 x 12.5 x 3.5 and 20 x 12.5 x 4.75 inches. It comes with a 100% polyester hypoallergenic cover that is also removable and washable.

It also features a 5-year warranty from the manufacturer.


  • 5-year warranty from the manufacturer.
  • Ergonomic design to align your spine.
  • Firm memory foam material to keep your posture intact.
  • Comes in different sizes for the whole family.
  • Ideal for back and side sleepers.
  • Best for people experiencing neck pain.


  • Comes with a strong smell.
  • A bit pricey.

2. Best for Extra Firm Support: EPABO Contour Memory Foam Pillow

EPABO Contour Memory Foam Pillow Orthopedic Sleeping...
  • LUXURIOUS SLEEPING PILLOW - Provides therapeutic relief for all...
  • ERGONOMIC - Proven contour design perfectly supports and aligns...
  • QUALITY MATERIAL - Breathable memory form provides better air...
  • SAFETY - All material are chemical free for better health.
  • 100% WORRY FREE - We are so confident in the quality of our...

The Epabo memory foam pillow is contoured to adopt an ergonomic shape to support your neck when you sleep correctly.

It is designed for use by all sleepers with chemical-free materials and soft, breathable fabric to guarantee comfort and a peaceful night's sleep.

Unlike other pillows, you can manipulate this pillow's size by removing a piece of memory from at the bottom of the pillow. It is an outstanding feature for stomach sleepers who require a soft and low pillow.

This pillow is an ideal option for people who are seeking a firm pillow, so if you are experiencing severe neck pain, the Epabo memory foam pillow might not suit you.


  • Provides firm support.
  • Ideal for all types of sleepers.
  • You can adjust the size if it is too high for you.
  • Suitable for people with shoulder and neck pain.
  • 30-day money-back guarantee.


  • It may cause some discomfort in the first weeks of use.
  • Not ideal for people with severe neck pain.
  • No warranty offer from the company.

3. Best for Medium Support: Xtreme Comforts Memory Foam Pillow

Xtreme Comforts Pillows for Sleeping - GreenGuard Gold...
  • Adjustable - Whether you prefer firm, fluffy, or fine, our memory...
  • Lump-Free - This bed pillow combines luxury with comfort to...
  • Cooling - We've designed our back, stomach, and side sleeper...
  • Stays Firm - Our cooling pillow won't fall flat on you. Rest your...
  • Easy-Clean Cover - Our bed pillows have a machine washable cover...

This pillow is an ideal one for all types of sleepers. It is filled with certiPUR-US certified shredded memory foam to allow you to customize the support you need. If you are prone to allergies as well, this pillow is encased in a micro-vented Kool-flow technology bamboo cover that is resistant to external pollutants such as dust mites. The cover is also great, for it keeps your head cool for a good sleep throughout the night.

Another great feature you will get by buying this pillow is that it is fully machine washable, so you can completely forget the occurring skin conditions caused by dirty pillows.


  • Fully machine-washable.
  • Made with shredded memory foam, which makes it easy to adjust the size.
  • Encased in a hypoallergenic removable and washable bamboo cover.
  • It is firm and soft for the ultimate sleep experience.
  • Ideal for side, stomach, and back sleepers.


  • It may have a chemical smell that lingers when new.
  • A bit heavier than other pillows.

4. Best Water Pillow: Mediflow Water Pillow, Memory Foam re-Invented with Waterbase Technology

Mediflow Water Pillow Memory Foam re-Invented with...
  • MEMORY FOAM RE-INVENTED: Extra Ventilated Memory Foam combined...
  • IDEAL FOR ALL SLEEP POSITIONS: Back sleeping, side sleeping, or...
  • YOU ARE UNIQUE: Water conforms to the shape of your head and...
  • CUSTOMIZE YOUR SUPPORT FOR COMFORT: Our Water Pillows can be...

A water pillow such as this Mediflow pillow is a great product to have if you want to relieve pain in your neck and shoulders. It is a type of pillow with a water-based design that offers ergonomic support to any sleeper.

Unlike other pillows that need you to adjust the size for your needs, this water pillow features hypoallergenic fibers with a supportive layer of water that adjusts with any movement of your head. Depending on what type of sleeper you are, you can adjust the support by adding or removing water.

This Mediflow water pillow is an FDA-registered medical device. Water pillows are clinically proven to support the shoulders, neck, and head while sleeping and reduce and prevent neck pain.


  • FDA-approved medical device.
  • Made with superior materials.
  • Ideal for people with neck pain.
  • Works for back, side, and stomach sleepers.
  • Suitable for people of all ages.
  • It is a hypoallergenic product.
  • 100% cotton pillowcase.
  • 3-year warranty from the manufacturer.


  • Water has to be replaced frequently to prevent mold from developing.

5. Best Organic: Holy Lamb Organics Orthopedic Neck Pillow

Holy Lamb Organics Orthopedic Neck Pillow
  • Premium Eco-Wool batting
  • Organic cotton fabric cover
  • Machine washable gentle with special instructions
  • Hand made in Oakville, WA by Holy Lamb Organics

If you want a wholly organic and handmade in the USA pillow, this option from Holy Lamb Organics is your best.

This organic pillow is made with a completely organic and animal cruelty-free material, Premium Eco-wool Batting. Products made with wool batting are known to last a long time without shrinking or causing unwanted allergies.

This pillow is encased with a 100% organic cotton fabric that is removable and washable. It was designed by this organics company in collaboration with a certified chiropractic physician to come up with the best product for all types of sleepers who want to eliminate or prevent neck pain.

It features two neck bolsters- a thick one and a thin one-on each side of the pillow. These two sides suit people who frequently change sleeping positions to adjust the thickness they require.


  • Made with the Premium Eco-wool batting.
  • Organic cotton fabric cover.
  • Machine-washable when following instructions.
  • Handmade in Oakville.
  • From a reputable Organics company.
  • Does not have any chemical smell.


  • Quite pricey.
  • Pillows are only made to order.
  • Stuffing may not impress some buyers.

What you Should Know Before Buying The Best Pillows For Neck Pain

1. What is neck pain?

Neck pain is any painful discomfort in the shoulders and neck area. It may manifest as an ache, an electric shock to the arm, or as intense pain you may feel in the neck muscles. Neck pain affects posture and range of movement.

2. What causes neck pain?

There are several neck pain causes such as straining, stress, chiropractic manipulation, uncomfortable sleeping position, underlying conditions such as arthritis, or wearing/carrying a lot of weight.

If you have neck pain but remain unsure of what's causing it, it is in your best interest to visit your doctor for a complete and thorough check up.

3. How can my sleep cause neck pain?

When you sleep, your whole body relaxes its muscles so you can rest well. Your neck is responsible for supporting your head throughout the sleeping period. Since your muscles relax, you might strain it without knowing, only to learn the effects the following morning.

To support your head naturally, you should first support your neck with a firm pillow. A supportive pillow eliminates or prevents neck pain and guarantees you a good night's sleep without unwanted awakenings.

A pillow that does not offer adequate neck support is a likely cause of your neck pain. Therefore, you must get the best pillow to prevent and eliminate neck pain while you sleep.

4. How do I choose the best pillow to prevent or eliminate neck pain?

When you want to get the right pillow that guarantees enough comfort and support while you sleep, the following are factors you should consider before buying one:

a). The pillow loft.

While sleeping, you need a pillow that adapts to your natural gait. It would help if you remembered this when buying your next pillow.

If you get a pillow that is too high or too low, you will be interfering with your spinal alignment as you will be forced to tilt your neck at an unnatural angle to support your head.

Your ideal loft will be a pillow height in line with your spine while lying on it. However, if you can't find a pillow with your ideal loft, you can buy one with an adjustable loft.

b). Firmness

You need to pay close attention to how firm the pillow you want is. To buy a pillow with the right firmness level, consider the weight of your head, the firmness of your mattress, and the pillow loft.

The pillow firmness dictates how comfortable your sleep will be. For instance, if you get a pillow that is too firm, it will create undesirable pressure points, like on your ears and neck, that will make you tilt your neck and, thus, cause neck pain.

On the other hand, if your pillow is too soft, it will sag beneath your head to create an unnatural sleeping posture.

c). Support.

You should know what amount of support you need from your new pillow. For instance, a cervical pillow will adequately contour to your neck rather than leave it unsupported.

To get the best pillow for support, it must support your sleeping position, be firm enough, and be the right height under your head.

d). Materials

There are many materials used when making pillows, which play a significant role in relieving neck pain. Because you want the best pillow for neck pain, you might want to get one that will last you long, and this is a feature dictated by the materials. Here are some of the materials you should look for for a long-lasting pillow.

  1. Memory foam.
  2. Latex.
  3. Buckwheat.
  4. Feathers.
  5. Polyfoam.
  6. Down.

e). Your sleeping position

As seen earlier in this article, your sleeping position tells you which pillow is best for you. However, if you experience back pain, experts suggest you switch to either back or side sleeping. Sleeping on your stomach makes you turn your neck and head upwards, often at a sharp angle that interferes with your spine alignment.

If you are accustomed to sleeping on your stomach, you should get a pillow with a low loft to avoid turning your head unnaturally and to enable easy breathing.

If you are a side sleeper or a back sleeper, your pillow should leave your spine, neck, and head in a straight line to maintain a healthy spine alignment.

5. How else can I reduce neck pain?

Apart from buying the best pillow, you should observe the following tips to help you prevent or reduce neck pain.

  1. Ensure your mattress is firm enough, so it doesn't sink under your pillow's weight.
  2. Lead an active lifestyle; lying down for extended periods can increase the chances and intensity of your neck pain and injury.
  3. Use heat or ice packs to reduce the intensity of your neck pain.
  4. Seek physical therapy if your neck pain worsens.
Ian Mutuli

About the author

Ian Mutuli

Founder and Managing Editor of Archute. He is also a graduate architect from The University of Nairobi, Kenya.
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