If you are expecting a new addition to your family, or are looking forward to expecting in the future, you probably are already aware of the havoc your growing body may wreck on your night’s sleep. Luckily there are ways to combat the comfort issues that can arise due to the changing shape of your body as you support the new life growing within.
Since your rest is crucial to not only your own health but to the baby, picking the sleep aids that can help you rest more comfortably is an important step to consider. There are many pregnancy pillow styles available for you to choose from, but due to how different each and everybody truly is, you should take the time to research which you feel would be best for you.
The Sleep Judge Team took the time to try out 5 of the best pregnancy pillows currently available, and the overview of our findings are found below.
Leachco Snoogle Body Pillow
||Dependent on retailer|
Queen Rose U-Shaped Pillow
PharMeDoc C-Shaped Body Pillow
Boppy Pregnancy Wedge Pillow
Our Top 5 Pregnancy Pillow Picks
As mentioned, The Sleep Judge Team took a personal interest in some of the best-rated pregnancy pillows in the industry, and have provided you with our top 5 picks. Hopefully, our choices can give you a good idea about which you may want to take a closer look at for your own personal comfort.
1. Leachco Snoogle Total Body Pillow
- Filling– Poly Fiber
- Density– Medium Plush
- Shape– C-shape
- Warranty– Dependent on retailer
Made by one of the most popular companies in the pregnancy pillow industry, Leachco set a standard years ago with their innovative comfort designs. Originally developed by a registered nurse and mother, this pillow can support hips, back, neck, and tummy all at same time. It is also slightly shapeable to allow you to take advantage of it in various ways by folding, twisting, or reversing it to fit specific support needs.
This total body design is a c-shaped pillow that boasts a cotton poly cover and a lofty polyfill that is machine washable. Although it can be difficult to remove and replace, you can buy a zippered cover to replace the original. Covers also come in a variety of colors to fit your decor.
Measuring 60 x 25 inches, and 7 inches tall, this is a great pillow for any stage of pregnancy, as well as give an upright support for lounging and nursing when the time comes. The higher loft provides proper head and neck support for side sleeping, and the shape allows for all body support. It also seems to be a popular pillow for anyone looking for body pillow support to alleviate discomfort from injury or surgery as it can help hold your body in position while allowing full relaxation.
- All body support
- Alternate covers available
- Relieves hip pressure
- Takes up a large amount of room
- May feel too soft
- May retain heat
2. Queen Rose U-Shaped Total Body Pillow
- Filling– Bionic Polyethylene
- Loft- 8 inches
- Density- Medium Plush
- Warranty– 90 day
The Queen Rose Company specializes in pillow comfort, especially for the expecting mother. This u-shaped pillow design is specific for supporting the discomfort of pregnancy surrounding back and belly needs, as well as support for joint issues, sciatica, and even injury recovery.
This whole body design is made to be versatile for a wide range of needs and can be folded for lounging, wrapped around for arm support or to cradle for nursing, and of course be used in a variety of ways to help you get a better night’s rest. The long zippered, washable cover also makes it much easy to remove and comes in one of two choices- a pink and blue dual sided cover, as well as a gray fleece cover.
This is an excellent choice for expectant mothers at any point in their pregnancy, as well as anyone else needing a supportive position for any sort of recovery that requires you to be positioned a certain way. Although the loft is higher, it does provide cradling support and gives well under pressure. The plush feel of the pillow cradles your body and allows you to relax without putting undue pressure on joints or strain on your back.
- Incredibly versatile
- Excellent for lounging upon
- Good back and belly support
- Color choices are lacking
- Bulky to move around
- May feel too flat for proper head support
3. PharMeDoc C-Shaped Body Pillow
- Filling– Poly Fiber
- Loft– 6 inches
- Density– plush
- Warranty– 5 years
PharMeDoc specializes in orthopedic bed pillows, as well as wellness and fitness products. Their pregnancy pillows are created with overall body comfort in mind and are specific to supporting spinal alignment. The 62-inch length and 30-inch width that is fully adjustable provides this full body, slightly c-shaped pillow versatility to use at any point in your pregnancy, or even for body pillow support afterward.
This unique design is symmetrical to allow for folding to create a lounging surface as well, but the wider, low loft also provides you with options to create a ‘nest’ like sleep experience for belly and back support- as well as a long, more body length pillow surface for head, neck, and leg support. The long zippered, washable, 100% cotton jersey cover is also soft and soothing which helps create a cooler night’s sleep.
This is a great design for just about anyone looking for nighttime support for their back and hips. Created specifically as a pregnancy pillow, it is designed for pain alleviation and joint relief, as well as provide proper sleep posture to allow for a true rest through the night. The shape and cover are very unisex in nature as well, making it a good choice for anyone looking for a more neutral pillow when used for other supportive uses.
- Helps relieve back and neck pain
- Loft is low enough for good side sleeping neck support
- Shapes easily
- May not be as comforting to taller people
- Not easy to clean
- Quality and strength of seems may be lacking
4. Boppy Pregnancy Wedge Pillow
- Filling– high-density foam
- Loft– 4 inches tapered
- Density– firm
- Warranty– 1 year
The Boppy Company name has become synonymous over the years with quality products for mom and baby to help make life both more comfortable and affordable. Sold by a variety of retailers, their many products are simple and easy to find, and although their pregnancy wedge may not look like much, it is a popular and incredibly versatile support that can get you to rest easier. The soft jersey cover is also easily removable for washing and is a neutral color to help match any decor.
Created to address the needs of mothers needing very specific belly support, the Boppy Pregnancy Wedge Pillow is a 4-inch tall, tapered foam wedge that takes on the weight of a heavily pregnant belly to alleviate the stress and strain placed upon the back and hips through the night. Not only does this allow your soft tissues to relax properly, it also supports proper spinal alignment and all-body blood flow. It also can be used on your the back to lay against, or even in various positions while sitting to allow supportive contouring comfort that fills in the natural curves and arches of the back that are often magnified through pregnancy.
The smaller size of this pillow is great for anyone not wanting the bulk of full length or whole body pillows, but who still needs effective support for night time comfort. Useful to any point in the pregnancy, the wedge is especially helpful through the later trimesters to help support the weight of the growing baby. This is also a great choice for travel as it is light and easily packable.
- Lightweight and easy to travel with
- Great for hip and leg support as well
- Awesome for warm weather sleeping
- May be too thin for proper cradling
- May be too firm
- Could be larger for more overall support
5. PregnancyPillow.com Pillow
- Filling– Poly Fiber
- Loft– 7 inches
- Density– Plush
- Warranty– 30 days
This pillow is designed with one thing in mind: nighttime pregnancy support. This shapeable, total body pillow was created to allow for added belly support, as well as added comfort for head, neck, hip, and back positioning. The unique shape and construction allow for some slight shaping, which boasts a full 85-inch length to take advantage of to lay upon or wrap yourself within through the night.
The cover comes in two choices: a cotton blend, or soft minky material, that unzips fairly easily for washing purposes. It also is offered in a variety of colors to provide you decor choice, as well as easy use as a nighttime positioning aid even after pregnancy. The shape also allows for easier storage as it folds and bends quite well to tuck away after use despite its relative bulk.
If you have been looking for something different, or have yet to find a full length or total pillow that works for you, this may be a good choice to consider as it applies the many details that are popular for full body support without much of the added bulk. Although made for both back and belly support, it works best for those who focus on one or the other due to the shape of its supportive center.
- Unique shape
- Provides excellent tummy support
- Good head and shoulder support
- May sleep warm
- May be too soft
- Dual back and belly support lacking
Types of Pregnancy Pillows
Not all pregnancy pillows are made the same, their shapes and construction are as different from one another as your body type might be from another person. You may find that different pillows work well in each stage of your pregnancy, or what works for one person may not work for another. The important thing to remember is that you need to consider what each type is used for to best determine your comfort and which best pregnancy body pillow is right for you.
Wedges may not look like much, but their small size can pack a supportive punch. Although they don’t take up much room in your bed, they can be used in a variety of ways to support your back, stomach, and even your lower back while sitting. They also are great to take along for travel. Usually, they are made of firm foam that gives in to pressure but also provides the support you need without breaking down through the night.
Full Body Length Pillows
Full body pillows are typically 4 to 5 feet in length and can either be used with or without your regular pillow- depending on whether it’s a model that provides flexibility for you to use under your head. These are typically straight in nature or provide some slight curve for better comfort. They usually have a pillowcase that either slips or sips over the pillow itself and is made of polyester with foam bead fill for body contouring.
Total Body Pillows
Total body pillows are hybridized to provide a full-length support, head support, and occasionally, even whole body wrap-around support. These types of pillows often can be of comfort through the late stages of pregnancy, and even can be used afterward due to the variety of ways it can be shaped. They usually have a pillowcase of some sort and are filled with a polyfill for easy washability. They also can be somewhat heavy and bulky, which usually takes up a lot of room, but often than that it outweighs the comfort they provide.
Sleep Positions During Pregnancy
No matter what your natural sleep position tendencies are, as your baby begins to grow you will most likely find yourself having to adjust your comfort to accommodate your changing body. Most women find that a side sleeping position becomes the easiest, and most comfortable, position to rest within- and most pregnancy pillows are constructed to help you rest in such a manner.
It is recommended to sleep on your left side, as it increases the amount of blood flow and nutrients to the placenta. You also can better help relieve back pain by sleeping on your side, a common complaint of many pregnant women. Later in pregnancy, many women experience heartburn, making any position that has your head more leveled with the rest of your body uncomfortable. This is when raising your upper body slightly can help, and sleeping on your back, with your upper body elevated may provide the relief you need.
Using pillows under or between your knees, lower back, or even your neck can help you support spinal alignment. It allows your body to roll more naturally into a relaxing position so you can get the sleep you desperately needed.
Sleep Position vs. Pillow Comfort
Pregnancy pillows often try and accommodate much of what is described above by giving you a versatile product that can be used to help you get more comfortable with your changing stages of pregnancy. Your pillow choices are already an important consideration to support your overall health, and this is even more so when pregnant.
Unfortunately, if you are a stomach sleeper, you aren’t going to be for long while pregnant. Back sleepers also may feel uncomfortable the further along they are, and may turn to their side naturally to better provide support to their added weight. Even side sleepers may feel the added weight before long and will be looking for ways to better support the stress their body feels through the night.
As with any sleep product, your comfort is entirely dependent upon your individual needs and preferences. What you need to watch for are ways to alleviate the stresses you feel upon your body.
Back Sleep Position Needs
When sleeping on your back it is always important to keep your head and neck in alignment with the rest of your spine. Typically a thinner pillow is the best choice for this position, but as you shift to your side to alleviate the weight, you may begin to feel it in your lower back and will need a slightly higher loft of a pillow.
Back pain and stress are common complaints of pregnant women due to the constant pressure on the soft tissues that are moving and reshaping themselves to accommodate body changes. Therefore it is especially important to allow the back to rest properly through the night.
Also mentioned above is the preference to elevate your upper body and head if, or when, you begin to experience heartburn. You also will want to support your neck, shoulders, as well as your lower back to be able to lay back in a lounging position and still keep your spine straight.
Side Sleep Position Needs
Side sleepers may find that they are well accommodated until later in their pregnancy when the weight of the baby begins to pull downwards and create a strain on their back. They also may find that they are unable to place their legs in the same position without feeling discomfort. Using a pillow that allows for total belly support, back support to lean upon if needed, and even in between leg support is often preferred when this begins to occur.
By creating a supportive positioning, you can better keep your body in the correct alignment for good blood flow, uninterrupted night’s rest from discomfort, and a support system for both mom and baby.
Like the standard pillow you use under your head, the most popular construction is made of a polyfill and cotton casing. But there are other materials that can be, and often are, used. Most materials are chosen by the preference of the individual, although the shapes of the pillows are usually more influential on overall comfort.
As with any pillow, a natural fiber and low thread count are what will help you keep good breathability and air flow through the night. Most covers are a cotton or cotton blend, is washable, and will easily pull onto the pillow even if it’s an odd shape. Occasionally the full body pillow covers can present a challenge when taking it off and putting on, and how they are constructed can help determine the effort required. Long zippers are usually the most helpful as they expose more of the pillow itself. But other types may only have a folded over flap that requires you to fold the cover back on the pillow.
The filling can occasionally be as varied as the pillow shapes itself. The most used filling is the polyfills that allow shaping, airflow, and easy washing; but also popular with many expecting mothers are memory foam or microbeads due to how well they conform to the shape of your body. Usually, the type of pillow determines the type of filling since each may be used in a different way.
What to Consider When Choosing a Pregnancy Pillow
Before making a purchase of any kind, you should always look over your product benefits and features to help you decide what may work best for you, or if you need to continue your search. Some of the few things you should consider are listed below and be sure to always review pillow ratings to help you determine your best fit.
How far along in your pregnancy are you?
Your comfort at the beginning of your pregnancy will have changed drastically by the end of your pregnancy. Stomach sleepers, for example, can probably get away with sleeping on their stomach for the first few months but are going to need something that helps cradle their body better when they naturally attempt to roll back to their stomach (which will eventually become impossible).
What seasons will you be pregnant through?
Pregnancy will make you HOT. You may love the look of that flannel pillow cover (often interchangeable with a cooler cover), but if you need the pillow through any type of warm season it may not be what you want later on. You also may not like the feel of a full body design due to possible heat retention. Take into account the entirety of your use of the pillow before making a final decision.
What are your typical sleep preferences?
If you have to change your position due to your pregnancy, then you definitely want to look for body support. Stomach and back sleepers will most likely both want some sort of support behind them later in the pregnancy that helps keep them propped in a side sleeping position. Side sleepers will usually want something to support their stomach.
Do you want a versatile pillow?
Many pillows can be used during pregnancy, and well afterward. Many can also be folded or used to support differing positions, be used for upright support, or even work for nursing the baby. Others are more specific, and may provide a few different options, but aren’t quite as versatile as after the pregnancy.
As with many pillows, personal comfort is a major factor to consider, especially due to the ever-changing nature of pregnancy progression. Choosing from the many different shapes and styles can be a difficult decision, which is why we have provided more detail to each of the above choices with examples of personal trial runs. In some cases, you may find mixing and matching pillows, or using certain ones during different stages of pregnancy may help with your overall sleep comfort.
When narrowing down your choices, take into consideration your natural sleep position as well as your own personal preferences to determine what might work best for you. Also, keep in mind the signs your own body is telling you surrounding stress and strain upon your back and hips to determine where extra support may be needed.
You might be interested in: Sleep Tips and Guide to Bedding for Pregnancy