Recently updated on February 21st, 2023 at 10:57 am
Down pillows have always been regarded for their plush and light feel, which is significantly different from feather or memory foam pillows. Down pillows feel luxurious and have a greater appeal than any other type of pillow. From a range of softness to colors to fill power, down pillows come in an endless number of options. It isn’t surprising when buyers have a hard time differentiating one option from the others. Therefore, it is so important to conduct proper research before going in to purchase a down pillow.
Let’s look at the features and benefits of a down pillow.
Down pillows are filled with the back, chest, and wing feathers of geese and ducks. This isn’t the same type of feathers that are used to make feather pillows. Down pillows are softer than regular feather pillows because they are made with softer feathers. Most people think that ducks and geese are the same. However, there’s a big difference between the two types of down feathers.
Duck down is more readily available and cheaper than geese down. Ducks aren’t necessarily cold-climate birds, so their feathers aren’t as soft or thick as that of geese. Most cheap down pillows are usually stuffed with duck down.
On the other hand, geese are cold climate birds, much bigger than ducks and with larger down clusters. Geese down is considered higher in quality because of their softness and plush feel and is also more expensive than duck down.
Whether you choose duck or geese down, they are always made of natural materials. Unlike foam or polyester pillows, down pillows can be re-cased if they lose shape. Like other pillows, down pillows also come in various densities and sizes.
Measured in cubic inches, fill power is referred to the amount of space inside the pillow that one ounce of down occupies. The higher the fill power, the better the quality of the down and the longer the durability. A down pillow with a higher fill power is also more expensive.
The lowest fill power is 600 cubic inches. These are the cheapest pillows with the smallest down clusters and are usually on the firmer side. If you want a firm down pillow, the one with a lower fill power is a good choice. However, it will have to be replaced frequently.
Most budget down pillows have a fill power of 700 cubic inches. They are neither too soft nor too firm and have moderate durability. If you want premium down pillows, then the 800 and above cubic inches of fill power is what you should get. The large down clusters make them light and soft, with a higher loft and excellent durability. A premium down pillow will last for years without losing its shape or softness.
Pros and Cons
Down pillows may be soft and luxurious, but they have their own benefits and downsides. Some of their advantages are:
Down pillows are highly regarded for their softness and plush feel. If you are someone who wants a soft pillow without sacrificing support should get a down pillow.
Down pillows are good for those who have neck pain, because of their excellent support. They contour to the shape of the sleeper, supporting the head and neck and preventing the wrong posture.
If you buy a high quality down pillow, they last for years without needing to be recased. Even if they need to be recased, they easily last for at least eight years, which is longer than any regular pillow.
Some of the downsides of down pillows are:
Since they are made from duck or geese feathers, down pillows are known to cause allergies. If you are sensitive to feathers, then down pillows may not be good for you.
Down pillows have no height at all. They are low, and also lose their shape pretty easily. If you prefer a higher loft, consider something other than down or go for a lower fill power for firmness.
Premium down pillows are several times more expensive than regular pillows. However, if you aren’t allergic, don’t mind the low loft, and can afford the steep price, down pillows are some of the best options on the market.
Top Down Pillows of 2018
The following are the best down pillow companies right now.
Based in Minnesota, SOL Organics specializes in affordable bedding made of organic materials. SOL is the acronym for sustainable organic living. Their luxurious down pillows made of Canadian duck down have a GOTS certified organic cotton shell and are made in Canada. The pillow is available in three firmness levels: soft for stomach sleepers, medium for back sleepers, and firm for side sleepers. The standard size is priced $99, while the king size is $139. Shipping is free. Shop SOL
This Los Angeles based bedding company makes 750 fill power down pillows, which means they are soft and luxurious. They are available in standard and King sizes, in three soft, medium, and firm variants. The standard size is priced between $69 and $109, while the king size is priced between $99 and $139. Shipping is free within the US.
The down pillows by Brooklinen are offered in three variants, mid plush, firm, and plush. Made from 100 percent premium Canada down, the pillows have the perfect balance between support and softness. The pillow is hypoallergenic and has been put through an ultra-fresh anti-microbial treatment. It is encased in a 100% cotton outer shell. Price starts from $69. Shop Brooklinen
The Cassiopeia down pillow is the ultimate luxury, priced at $225 and filled with the finest European geese down. The pillow provides both softness and support. Cassiopeia is expensive, but all customers claim that it’s worth every penny. Made from the finest down, Cassiopeia is hypoallergenic and may not make you allergic. Shop Slumbr
The jury is out on down pillows. Some say they are overrated, while others swear by it. Whatever your reason for preferring down, when the right one is purchased, the comfort and feel is unmatchable.