I stole a pillow over Christmas. Out of desperation.
You see, my oldest climbed out of his crib at 28 months. He now sleeps in my great grandfather’s bed (random trivia: they have the same middle name). And he has my pillow.
To reduce the risk of SIDS, healthy sleep guidelines call for no pillows in the crib until 12 months. I got lazy and never bothered to give him a pillow, so he only knows how to sleep on a flat surface.
Until now. With my pillow.
I’d guarded it jealously for years. My pillow’s all feathers and squish. I can mash it small enough to stow in a suitcase with lots of room left for other goodies. Basically, it’s flat as a pancake. Which is why I passed it along like a diploma when my son graduated to a big boy bed.
This meant I had to get a new pillow. This led to a panic-filled shopping frenzy: Stein Mart, Target, Costco, blah, blah, blah. How could I know from a 5-minute test at each store that this new pillow could ensure me nights of rest?
Here are some tips if you’re faced with a similar pillow-shopping dilemma. And for your convenience, I’m including affiliate links. Check out my Disclaimer to learn more. :
1. Alignment is key for good sleep.
Check out this article to learn more about why your pillow can make or break your night.
2. What’s your favorite pillow flavor?
Do you like em’ firm, medium or soft? I’m, like, “the softer the better.” To figure this out, just head on over to your local department store and try out a couple for comfort. If you like one, buy it! It’s all about personal taste. (You can buy one online, but I really recommend you get up close and personal before shelling out your dough.)
3. Natural fibers are your friend.
Lots of pillows are made of foam. Which means they are coated in flame-retardant chemicals. In other words, THEY ARE NASTY – and you get to breathe this stuff in EVERY NIGHT. So look for pillows filled with down feathers – or fancy-schmancy, alpaca hair (no joke.)
4. Check the store’s return policy.
According to Consumer Reports, “You will need a week sleeping on a pillow to work out if it really is the right pillow for you.” So when you find your favorite flavor (tip #2 – check!), you’ve gotta test drive it for a while to make sure the alignment is right, too (tip #1 – check!) Y’all, pillow trial and error is a pain in the ass.
5. Don’t forget the waterproof pillow protector.
To guard against dust mites. And slobber if you’re a drooler (or your kid decides to pee in your bed.)
When I finally picked a pillow, I quickly grew to hate it. Sheesh! And spent the next several months plotting how to steal my husband’s beloved pillow.
Until we visited my childhood home over Christmas. And I discovered my pillow had a soul mate. Just squishy enough to squeeze amongst the presents without anyone noticing. And make the 7-hour trek home. I’ve slept like a baby ever since.
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Photo credit: Krista Mangulsone from Unsplash.com