The Fold Test: Do You Need New Pillows?
You've probably heard quite a bit about how to choose the right mattress, but what about pillows? Even though you might not think about them too often, pillows play an indispensable role in providing a good night’s sleep. Accordingly, they should be replaced regularly to make sure your neck, head and shoulders receive the support required to keep you comfortable until the sun peeks over the horizon. If you're not sure your pillows are still in good condition, the fold test offers a simple way to determine whether or not it's time for a replacement.
How To Perform The Fold Test
The fold test is quite simple – just fold your pillow in half, hold it in place for 30 seconds or so, and let go. If the pillow’s ready to be replaced, it’ll remain folded or take some time to fully unfold. When the pillow simply springs back into shape, it's still providing the support you need and can continue to be used. Make sure that you perform this test with every pillow you regularly use to fall asleep to avoid shortchanging yourself when it comes time to doze off.
Purchasing New Pillows
Pillow shopping is a different process for everyone, and the pillows you select will depend on a number of variables, including your usual sleeping position, your sensitivity to allergens, and more. Thinner pillows are a good choice for back sleepers, as they minimize bending of the neck to prevent discomfort when you wake. Stomach sleepers should take a similar approach, although opting for an even thinner pillow can work as well. Finally, side sleepers typically benefit from a wider, more firm pillow, as they promote the appropriate alignment between your head and the rest of your body.
It's also important to take your body size into consideration. A larger person creates more pressure on their mattress, causing their body to sink deeper into it during sleep. Since the mattress will thus be closer to their head, it's better to choose a thinner pillow to keep the neck at a proper angle. Likewise, a smaller person can opt for a more substantial pillow, because their head will rest further from the mattress as they doze.
One final factor to consider when upgrading your bedding is the filling material of the pillows you’re about to buy. If you suffer from allergies, pillows crafted with hypoallergenic materials are an obvious choice – and there are plenty of options, from memory foam to polyurethane and beyond. On the other hand, if you’ve never had a problem with allergies, down/feather pillows offer a uniquely soft appeal that you might prefer over the alternatives.
Protecting Your Pillows
Once you've chosen new pillows, make sure to outfit them with new pillowcases, covers, and protectors to improve your comfort and extend the life of your purchases. Pillowcases made of soft materials, such as cotton, complement the rest of your bedding for a sleek look and a pleasant feel. For added defense against water, stains, allergens, and more, add a pillow protector to keep out irritants and soils.
A Good Night’s Sleep
While the right mattress goes a long way, choosing pillows precisely for your needs can help make the difference between sleeplessness and solid rest. Outfit your bed with cozy pillows, pillowcases and pillow protectors to complete your bedroom and make it a more comfortable place to relax.