The Reason We Love Cool Pillows

By Oktay Ozadam

Cool Side of the Pillow

When it comes to sleep, we want what's best. But how do we tell fact from fiction?

Cooling Pillows have been said to have several benefits when it comes to helping us sleep. They help us sleep by stopping hot air from building up underneath our head (which often brings discomfort) as well as helping us feel refreshed in the morning. However, a lot of the time this can feel like a scam. So, that's why we're here to answer your questions and put your head to rest.

Why is the Pillow Always Cold on the Other Side?

Most pillows are the same temperature as your room (usually 68 to 86 degrees cooler than your head), and so the side your head doesn't rest on, stays cooler.

Pillows are designed like this specifically to try and stay cool. They are designed with materials that don't transfer heat well at all, and so keep the constant temperature that the room has. Due to the hot air from your head building up on one side of the pillow, this heat is then kept held on that side and creates a surrounding and developing heat around your head.

Some manufacturers are developing specific pillows so that the heat isn't stored for as long - meaning you don't have to flip the pillow because it stays colder for longer.

Technology Behind Cooling Pillows

Do cooling pillows really work? Yes, is the short answer. Various studies have shown us that by adding a condensation layer to your ordinary pillow, it will absorb the heat from your body and disperse it away from your head, creating a refreshing and cool surface for you to sleep on at night.

These kind of cooling pads are especially helpful when it comes to denser memory foam pillows. A specially designed gel can be added throughout pillows in the form of either gel beads or shredded gel particles, which allows for this cooling technology to be used effectively every day.

By only having a small layer of the cooling pad, you still get the same support as your regular pillow, but with the added benefit of the heat produced by your head on the fabric being dispersed. That way, you don't have any more discomfort while trying to sleep.

How Can I Cool My Own Pillows?

If you don't have a gel pad or a pillow with cooling technology already within it, we've put together three simple things you need to do to make your own cooling pad, perfect for those hot nights.

  • An inflatable pillow
  • Water
  • A small funnel or squeeze bottle

Fill your inflatable pillow with water, rather than air. Use the squeeze bottle or funnel to make sure that you fill it efficiently before sealing it up. Next, all you have to do is put it in the fridge for a few hours to get it nice and cool before you intend to use it.

This perfect DIY is the key to beating the hot summers that seem to be insistent upon keeping us up at night, whether it be at night or for a nap! You can't go wrong with this chilled pillow.

What types of cooling pillows are there?

Cooling pillows come in varying shapes and sizes, so it can often feel daunting when it comes to choosing your own pillow. We've put together our top 8 favourite cooling pillows to make your search all that much easier.

  • Snow Pillow – Rem Fit Nordic Chill fabric is incorporated, which helps disperse heat by improving airflow, cooling up to 10 times faster than ordinary cotton.
  • Ghost Pillow – includes a layer of Propriety Phase change material alongside a mesh cover which helps the air to circulate and cool quicker.
  • The Cool Pillow – Adjustable by Nest bedding – comes with a shredded gel-foam filling alongside the adjustability of their famous Easy Breather Pillow.
  • Coop Home Goods – The Eden Pillow – a fully adjustable pillow with a bamboo cover and excellent breathability and cooling.
  • Classing Brands Reversible Cool – open-cell memory foam, meaning air is better to travel throughout and improve breathability to keep you cool all night
  • Xtreme Comforts Slim – a perfect choice for stomach sleepers, containing shredded memory foam and bamboo cover for high airflow and breathability all night.
  • Cooling Gel by Product Stop – ideal for side-sleepers, contoured design for support alongside cooling gel to disperse heat away from your head throughout the night

Are Cooling Pillows Toxic?

Some earlier developed cooling pillows can cause ill-effects, especially if they are cheaply made. However, there is a simple way to make sure that you aren't putting your health at any risk with cooling pillows.

When you are looking at purchasing a cooling pillow, rather than spend hours upon hours researching what is and isn't toxic - what we do is to search for pillows which contain materials that have been certified by independent 3rd-parties. That way, you know they have been approved for safety and purity.

Two of the most common certifications that we recommend you look for are:

  • CertiPUR-US – Certifies that foam materials are free from harmful chemicals such as ozone depleters, formaldehyde, heavy metals, flame retardants, and phthalates, as well as making sure it has low VOC (volatile organic compounds) emissions for indoors.
  • OEKO-TEX – Certifies that every component has been tested for harmful substances such as lead and heavy metals, NFE (nitrogen-free extract), formaldehyde, flame retardants, and phthalates, which can sometimes be harmful to human health.

What is Cooling Bed Technology?

Cooling bed technology is very similar to cooling pillows, designed to keep you cool all night long.

Experts agree that a cooler bed is one of the most significant factors to getting a great night's sleep, and alongside cooling pillows, cooling mattresses are growing in popularity. After all, if you're too hot in bed, be it from illness, hot flushes, warm summer nights, the result is always the same – soaked bedsheets, restless nights, and constant discomfort.

Cooling bed gadgets have been designed as an alternative to air conditioners and fans, such as Bedjet (air-based) , CUBE (water-based) or Ooler Sleep System (water-based). These innovative ideas accommodate any sized bed and can even have two separate sections for heating and cooling (ranging from 55-110 degrees), allowing couples to cool or heat their side of the bed as they wish. No more fighting over the blanket or arguments over the thermostat as it is fully customisable to the way you sleep.