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Like most consumers, you probably care about the products you bring into your home and how they can potentially affect your health. When it comes to home bedding, the matter of the type of pillow you choose can play a big role in not just the quality of your sleep, but also your overall health. While many consumers assume all pillows are created equal, this is not the case. Let’s take a closer look at synthetic versus natural pillows.
When looking at the biggest disadvantages of synthetic pillows, it will depend on whether or not you have allergies. Natural fill pillows typically use hypoallergenic materials, such as silk, wool, down, kapok, and other naturally found sources, that do not accumulate dust and mites which are two things that can exacerbate matters for allergy sufferers. In comparison, synthetic pillows can use unspecified fillers which may cause irritations. In fact, the Asthma and Allergy Center conducted a study which reports, “Three earlier studies have observed that synthetic pillows accumulate dust-mite allergens at a rate faster than feather pillows and that synthetic materials contain a higher concentration of dust-mite allergens after a given period of use.” This means that synthetic pillows are definitely worse for allergy sufferers because they allow dust mite allergens to accumulate.
The general public consensus has long been that the use of natural ingredients in pillows can lead to allergy flare-ups. People also assume that all of the organic pillows on the market are filled with animal feathers, which can lead to allergies. It is important to note that not every natural pillow automatically uses animal feathers. Many use a mixture of both animal products and plant-based products such as silk, or simply plant-based products alone. The key is to choose hypoallergenic pillows for allergy sufferers. For instance, wool, although it comes from an animal, is naturally hypoallergenic and won’t harbor dust mite allergens. Another thing that sets hypoallergenic pillows apart is that they are specifically made for allergy sufferers to remove or reduce allergens during the growth, processing, and manufacturing phases to ensure a healthy result.
This is a big one for consumers. No one wants to buy a product that is time-consuming or requires care that is a hassle overall. Natural fill pillows are much easier to care for than synthetic options. Most pillows made with synthetic materials can be machine washed to make maintaining a clean sleeping environment easy, however, they need to be washed more frequently than naturally sourced pillows. Since many natural fill pillows are hypoallergenic and do not have the ability to harbor the same nasty things as a synthetic pillow, you will need to wash them less frequently. Even when you do have to clean them, it is usually a simple wipe down with a cloth and then air dry instead of the big to-do of washing and drying them by machine. When you machine wash synthetic pillows, they tend to lose their shape and become somewhat clumpy in the process due to the filling, which is usually one singular piece, breaking down a little more with every wash. With natural fill pillows, this problem is reduced and you get the same great shape the whole life of the pillow.
Another one of the biggest disadvantages of synthetic versus organic pillows is the matter of how long they last. This often comes down to a matter of how much a consumer is willing to pay. While synthetic pillows are more affordable up front, they do not last as long as natural fill pillows. What you will save initially, you will definitely end up paying in replacements later on whereas organic pillows simply last longer in general. A synthetic pillow can last anywhere from 6 months to 2 years whereas an organic pillow can last an impressive figure of anywhere from 7 years to 10 years.
A synthetic pillow has very little to offer in terms of matters such as temperature control. If you tend to run hot while sleeping, an organic pillow filled with an option such as wool is the better choice since it will help to regulate temperature. A synthetic pillow doesn’t offer anything in the way of temperature control. Another factor to look at when considering synthetic versus organic pillows is the firmness. If you prefer a softer pillow with more of a sinking feeling, an all-natural pillow is the right choice for you. A natural pillow can also be on the firmer side since it can also be adjusted to get a custom fill to meet your preferences.
Find our selection of natural and organic pillows HERE