Best Latex Pillows
Learn about the types of latex pillows available, the difference between latex and memory foam pillows, and which latex pillow might be best for you.
Latex is a material used in mattresses, pillows, and other commercial products. It’s extracted from the sap of rubber trees and can be processed through two methods that each give the final product unique properties and benefits. Many people associate latex with things like hospital gloves, rubber bands, toys, and even paint, all of which aren’t ideal places to rest one’s head at night. However, when used inside a pillow, latex is extremely soft, responsive, cool, and durable, all of which are key for achieving great sleep night after night.
Whether you’re in the market for a latex pillow or simply wanting to learn more, this guide should help. In it, we’re sharing the best latex pillows on the market, pros and cons, buying tips, and more.
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Best Latex Pillows
- Nerd’s Pick – The Saatva Pillow
- Best Value – Brooklyn Bedding Talalay Latex Pillow
- Most Comfortable Latex Pillow – Nest Easy Breather All-Natural
- Best Organic Latex Pillow – Avocado Green Pillow
- Best Latex Pillow for Hot Sleepers – PlushBeds Pillow
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Saatva is known for quality products, and their latex pillow doesn’t disappoint. It’s made with a 100% Talalay latex core that’s shredded for improved breathability while providing responsiveness for head and neck support. The core is surrounded by 100% organic cotton that’s filled with micro-denier fiber for a silky feel and then covered in 100% cotton in a sateen weave, which wicks moisture and keeps the pillow cool. Available in king and queen sizes, this is a nice luxury option that has all the bells and whistles.
At less than $100 for a king or queen size pillow, this is one of the more affordable quality latex pillows available today. You can choose from a high or low loft level depending on the type of support you need as a stomach, back, side, or combination sleeper. The company recommends high loft pillows for side sleepers, low loft pillows for stomach sleepers, and back and combination sleepers will do well on either.
Most Comfortable Latex Pillow
The Easy Breather by Nest is made with a soft, cotton fabric that’s filled with eight inches of Oeko-Tex certified natural latex noodle foam and soft fibers. Both the cotton cover and latex filling are breathable, ensuring a cool night’s sleep. It’s easily adjustable and has a buoyant feel, making it a good option for any sleeping position. This pillow is available in standard, queen, and king sizes for as little as $99, and Nest provides a 30-night trial period and free shipping.
Best Organic Latex Pillow
Made with 100% vegan and organic materials, The Avocado Green Pillow simply had to be our choice for the best organic latex pillow on the market. It has a nice, middle-of-the-road firmness level that should appeal to most types of sleepers, plus the latex and kapok fill can be removed or added in order to adjust the loft to your liking.
Best Latex Pillow for Hot Sleepers
This organic shredded latex pillow is Global Organic Latex Standard certified, meaning it’s made with the safest and cleanest Dunlop latex available. The shredded latex makes it adjustable, so you can fluff the pillow to your liking as needed. It’s available in three sizes and the latex filling is finely shredded to prevent shifting and clumping. It’s naturally mold and mildew-resistant doesn’t retain body heat and is available in standard, queen, and king sizes.
Types of Latex Pillows
Latex is one of the best pillow materials available thanks to its breathability, softness, and resiliency. The overwhelming variety of latex pillows on the market today can be distinguished by the process through which they’re made, their materials, and their construction.
Latex can be rendered using one of two processes: Dunlop or Talalay. To create Dunlop, liquid latex is foamed, poured into a mold, and then heated, resulting in a dense final product. In the Talalay process, the mold is partially filled and then sealed. Gas is then used to disperse the latex throughout the mold, resulting in a foam that’s softer, lighter, and generally more breathable.
Latex pillows can also be characterized by the makeup of their materials: natural, synthetic, or blended. 100% natural latex pillows have powerful hypoallergenic properties and are also dust mite and mold-resistant. Synthetic latex pillows are made from materials that mimic the properties of latex and will have a similar feel at a more affordable price. On the downside, synthetic latex pillows can have a distinct odor. Blended latex pillows combine natural and synthetic latex. Synthetic and blended latex pillows are a nice option for those who find 100% latex pillows too expensive or whose allergy symptoms are triggered by latex.
The two main latex pillow options to consider with regard to form are shredded and solid. Shredded latex pillows are plush, shapeable, and adjustable. They also receive greater airflow. Solid latex pillows are denser, but they’re often made with breathable channels for improved breathability.
Latex pillows also come in a variety of sizes, ranging from standard to king and queen. While less common, some companies offer latex body pillows, which can benefit sleepers who need additional spinal support or pressure point relief, or simply like the feeling of hugging a pillow as they sleep.
Benefits of Sleeping With a Latex Pillow
Latex pillows can provide a myriad of benefits for sleepers.
- Bounce: The original material latex is made from has a high degree of elasticity. While other foams, like memory foam, can result in a sinking or stuck feeling, latex tends to have more bounce.
- Pressure Relief and Support: Latex pillows can conform to the head and neck to help alleviate pain. Sleepers often find that latex provides a nice combination of pressure relief and spinal support.
- Durability: Latex is one of the most durable pillow materials on the market. Latex pillows can last up to 3 or 4 years, which is much longer than memory foam, down, or other types. Dunlop latex is slightly more durable than Talalay.
- Naturally Cooling: Latex is naturally much cooler than memory foam. Pillows with shredded latex amplify this benefit further, limiting heat retention by allowing airflow through the shreds. Solid latex pillows are cool as well, however, thanks to air channels in the foam that aid in breathability.
- Hypoallergenic and Eco-Friendly: Generally, latex pillows are made by manufacturers with a focus on eco-friendly and natural materials. Both the environmentally-conscious and those who gravitate toward hypoallergenic materials for health or other reasons will find a plethora of natural and organic options in the latex pillow market.
Cons of Latex Pillows
- Price: Latex pillows tend to be more expensive than other types, ranging from $50 to $300, with luxury and 100% natural latex pillows on the higher end of that spectrum. While the cost is partially offset by the durability of the product, it can still feel like a hefty chunk to pay for a pillow.
- Responsiveness: Latex can feel difficult to move on or adjust throughout the night due to the density. They return to their original shape faster than memory foam and can feel heavy to sleepers who are used to lighter varieties, like down.
- Smell: One of the most common complaints about latex is the smell. Off-gassing smells similar to rubber are common in both organic and synthetic latex products.
- Allergy Symptoms: Those with latex allergies may find that latex pillows trigger symptoms. If you have mild allergies, a blended or synthetic latex pillow may not bother you.
Memory Foam vs. Latex Pillows
Latex and memory foam pillows are two birds of a feather, attracting sleepers who want a durable, contouring, soft product. Neither requires fluffing, as they return to their original shape after use, and both are dust mite resistant and last longer than their down or polyester pillow alternatives.
While similar, they have their differences. Memory foam, the newer of the two materials, contours beautifully to the neck, head, and shoulders, distributing weight evenly and relieving pain. However, it’s known for trapping heat, and latex is naturally cool. Latex also lasts slightly longer than memory foam, but it tends to be more expensive.
Ultimately, it comes down to personal choice. Those who enjoy the close contouring of a memory foam pillow but want a springier feel with more bounce and breathability will enjoy latex.
How Often Should I Change My Pillow?
The National Sleep Foundation recommends changing your pillow every 1 to 2 years. They absorb oil, hair, and dead skin cells over time. They’re also a perfect environment for dust mites and other allergens.
The longevity of a pillow will depend on its material, however. Latex pillows are the longest-lasting of the bunch, with average lifespans of 3 to 4 years. Feather, memory foam, and down pillows can last anywhere from 18 months to 3 years.
Even if a pillow that isn’t technically aged out, it may need replacing. If you’ve switched sleeping positions recently or can afford a pillow that would offer better spinal alignment, there’s no reason to wait.
Here are a few indicators that it’s time to replace your pillow:
- You wake with aches and pains in your neck or shoulders on a regular basis.
- You’re sneezing more often, which could be due to dust mites.
- You break out more frequently, which could signal oil and dirt build-up.
- When you fold your pillow in half, it doesn’t expand back to its original shape.
- There are lumps in the foam or filler or permanent stains on the cover.
As consumers are becoming increasingly environmentally aware, manufacturers are responding with latex pillow options. Whether you want to splurge on an all-natural, luxury latex pillow or want a blended option that can provide you with the cooling and pressure-relieving benefits, there’s a latex pillow option out there for everyone.
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