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After a long day, sinking into a soft but gently supportive down pillow is the perfect way to add a little bit of opulence to your everyday life. Light and lofty, goose down pillows insulate without retaining too much heat, and they gently conform to the head and neck in a way that few other materials do. Whether piled high on a bed at an upscale hotel or sitting in their regular place on your bed at home, down pillows have always been synonymous with luxury.
And that’s not for nothing. Though sleepers who prefer firmer pillows may need to flip or re-fluff their down feather pillows once or twice during the night, down pillows boast impressively long lifespans, and they don’t need to be replaced as often as synthetic fill options. Down pillows are made with insulation from geese and ducks, and the tiny clusters of fill are softer and more comfortable than feathers found on the outside of the birds.
When comparing down pillows, you’ll see a fill power number, often in the 400 to 800 fill range, that specifies the density of tiny down clusters inside of your pillow. A 400-fill down pillow, for instance, features down that covers less surface area than the down in an 800-fill pillow would. Often, a higher fill power pillow will be more expensive than a lower fill pillow. You’ll also often see fill weight listed as a ratio, commonly as 80/20, 90/10, or 70/30. These numbers refers to the ratio of down to feathers in your pillow. Down clusters insulate more than feathers do, so pillows with lower amounts of feathers will be warmer. Warmth isn’t as critical in pillows as it is in bedding, but these numbers are good to be aware of as you compare options.
Side sleepers especially will appreciate the way down-filled pillows cradle the head and neck without pushing back too much, but down pillows work well for back and stomach sleepers as well. Our selection of down pillows includes options with different levels of softness to cater to sleepers who prefer softer or firmer support at night. Consider your sleep position as you start your search. Back and stomach sleepers benefit from a medium firm or firm pillow, while side sleepers often appreciate softer options.