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Everything you need to know about pillows (there's more than you thought).

Posted by Elizabeth Sopher on

Pillows – we are on the case!

Pillows have gotten complicated, but do not worry! When you find your perfect pillow, we’ve got the best pillowcase for you.

The QuickZip Difference:  Pillowcases
•    Standard and King are generously cut and extra-long to fully cover and drape
over the end of your pillow
•    Interior European cuff holds the pillow in and keeps it from peeking out
•    Elegant finish with piping along the fold
Shop QZ Pillowcases



The goal of a pillow is to keep your head and neck aligned for the most comfortable sleep. So what kind of pillow should you get. Our strongest recommendation is to try them out for a couple of nights at least, so check the return policy on any new pillow you buy.

The fill and construction determine the properties of the pillow, and many are designed to work with your sleep position. Here are a few important terms to know before you start shopping.

Pillow sizes:
Most pillows are 20-21 inches in width. Lengths vary, and increasingly, longer pillows are being sold as the standard with names like Jumbo or Queen. Though it can vary by manufacturer below are normal lengths by pillow size:

Pillow Size & Dimensions (inches)
Standard: 20x26
Super/Queen/Jumbo: 20x28
King: 20x36

More sizes: Euro sizes are often square, ranging from 16x16 to 26x26 inches.

Pillow Construction:
Gusset: Rather than a simple seam along the edges that attaches the top and bottom pieces of fabric, a
gusseted pillow has a strip of material around the edge often an inch or two tall (sewn to the top and
bottom pieces) creating height/loft in the pillow.
Interior sleeve: This is a sort of pillow-within-a-pillow used to separate different fill materials and create
a specific firmness or structure.

Fill Types:

Down: Soft insulating clusters found underneath the breast feathers of ducks and geese. Down is known to be very soft and is naturally anti-microbial and hypoallergenic. The overlying feathers are also often used in pillows to create volume and firmness; but these have quills that can poke through the
outer fabric. Some manufacturers provide a “fill power”, a number usually between 300 and 800 that describes the space taken up by 1 ounce of down.

Natural Latex: Produced from rubber tree milk. Latex is known to be bouncy to suspend your head as well as cooling, anti-microbial and mildew proof. Copper-infused latex is even more cooling, with the copper fibers effectively dispersing heat throughout the pillow.

Memory Foam: A polyeurethane material sensitive to pressure that molds to the shape of your head and available in different firmnesses – soft to more firm. Benefits include that it is hypoallergenic and anti-microbial and will not flatten over time. Some sleepers find memory foam hot, as it can absorb heat.

Gel: Usually a polyurethane encased in plastic which may be found in layers with other fill materials or chopped into and blended with memory foam. Gel often has cooling properties but test it out – experts say it could dissipate within 10 minutes or so.

Polyester (AKA Down Alternative): Strong synthetic fiber that comes in many different forms. Easy to care for, high quality down alternatives can be very comfortable and supportive. Lower quality (and priced) versions can get flat or lumpy over time.

Less common fill materials include wool and buckwheat, as well as hybrid combinations of any the materials described.

Washing your pillows:
Consumer reports suggest these pillow freshening tips:
- Air it out on a clothesline outside on a sunny, breezy day, or 
- Machine wash – warm water, gentle cycle, mild detergent – and dry adding some towels will speed up the process and a few tennis balls will keep your pillow fluffy. If you prefer, you can also line dry with great results.

(Sources: Consumer Reports)


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