How to choose a travel pillow

Sleeping in awkward positions for extended periods of time can leave you with a chronic neck pain and ruin your day in a hurry. We’ve all been there, at least once in our lifetime. This is always a terrible feeling, but it’s especially bad if you find yourself on a long journey across the other end of the globe.

Fortunately for all travelers, there are a few ways in which it’s possible to avoid this hassle. Getting a proper travel pillow is a must to ensure that your next trip passes as smoothly as possible. Take it from me, a person who just chose a first pillow that came into my arms, these things can be vastly different in structure. Here are a few tips that will help you choose the best option for your specific needs.

Inflatable pillows

These things are usually the first choice for most travelers. The reason being is that they are fairly inexpensive, don’t take up a ton of space, and just seem like an overall more practical option. Unfortunately, they are not exactly built to last, and are usually only good for one season.

Furthermore, theses pillows leave a lot to be desired when it comes to comfort, as they tend to be made from cheap plastic or rubber. Still, if you’re just looking for a quick-fix option for your neck pain, this might do the trick for a trip or two.

Pillows filled with tiny beads

While being a lot more comfortable compared to the pillow mentioned above, we can honestly say that we are not the biggest fans of these. To start, the stuffing usually moves around a lot, which is not a great thing when you’re trying to find as much support for your head as possible.

This is especially noticeable on those long bus trips, when our body twists and turns all the time. Don’t get us wrong, it’s not to say that they are absolutely useless, but they simply leave a lot to be desired on the table.

Memory foam

In our opinion, this is the best option that can currently be found on the market. Pillows created out of memory foam have been around for a while, and people are usually divided into two groups when it comes down to it: they either love them or they cannot stand them.

We clearly represent the first group. The foam adapts to the shape of your neck and head, providing additional support just where it counts the most. They used to be rather expensive, but can be found for quite an affordable price these days. Believe us, it’s definitely worth it.

Don’t forget about practicality

Ultimately, while comfort is the most important thing, chances are that you wouldn’t exactly want to end up with a huge pillow that cannot fit inside any of your bags. Furthermore, certain travel pillows are lined with thick fabric that makes them hard to dry, and that is especially important for those long and grueling trips when you don’t have access to washing and drying machines.

Fabrics also play a big role depending on the climate you’re planning on visiting. For example, fleece pillows will keep you warm for a long time, thus allowing you to drift away into sleep in no time, in case you find yourself in a well-cooled area. Switch that around and you’ll end up sweating bullets all night long, probably cursing the day you decided to buy it in the first place.

Choose a pillow that fits your needs perfectly

Did you know that travel pillows can vary in shape as well? Most of us seem to think of travel pillows that only come in a famous U shape, but they can also be designed in a more traditional manner, for those of us who like to sleep resting against the seat in front of us, or possibly even leaning on the window. Some people even prefer them because they can be easier to pack. Just make sure to do your research ahead of time in order to make the correct choice.

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