Are You Using the Right Size Pillow?


Getting a good night’s sleep is important if you want to stay healthy and happy. Buckwheat pillows provide a lot more support than standard pillows. However, in order to benefit from the additional support and comfort that these pillows provide, you need to ensure you are choosing the right size. Everyone is different and what one person finds comfortable, another might not.

The sizes and types of pillow that’ll give you the best night’s rest depend on a wide range of personal preferences:

  • How do you sleep? Stomach sleepers, side sleepers, and back sleepers are going to require different sizes and types of pillows.
  • What kind of fill do you prefer? Synthetic fills and down-filled pillows are going typically softer pillows than the firmer memory foam pillow.
  • How soft is your bed? What kind of bed size do you have? A standard pillow might be too small for California king beds while a firmer pillow might not work if you like softer beds.
  • What are you using your pillow for?
    • Do you read in bed? You may want to consider a reading pillow.
    • Do you need lumbar support?
    • Do you want to make your bed or sofa pretty with decorative pillows and pillow shams when you’re not in bed?
    • Considering a travel pillow?

How do you sleep?

Side sleepers

If you’re like 41% of Americans, then you’re probably a side / fetal sleeper. You’ll want to make sure that the pillow you select for sleeping gives your spine proper alignment:

pillow height too high

pillow height too low - side sleeper

If the height or loft of the pillow is too high or too low, it’s going to end up causing neck pain. You’ll want a pillow that is able to provide a completely parallel spine to bed alignment:

right size pillow - side sleeper

Back sleepers

incorrect pillow size - back sleepers

For back sleepers, you’ll want your neck to retain it’s normal curvature. Having pillows that are too high or too low can obstruct breathing and lead to snoring or other neck pains.

Choosing the right size, height, and fill are important for added comfort while sleeping. Here’s a proper pillow height for back sleepers:

proper heigh - back sleepers

Below you’ll discover everything you need to know about the common sizes of sleeping pillows available.

Common bed pillow dimensions


Standard pillows – 20” x 26”

The most common pillow size is the standard-sized pillow (20” x 26”). One pillow typically fits a twin bed, while two can stretch out over a Queen or full size bed. For a king bed you would need three standard pillows.

Queen pillows – 20” x 30”

Queen size pillows are typically four inches larger than standard pillows, though they do retain the same width. A queen size bed will comfortably fit two of these pillows. They can even often be pushed into a standard pillow case to provide a fuller fit.

King Pillows – 20” x 36”

King pillows are the largest of the American size pillows available. On a King size bed two of these pillows will fit comfortably. You can also use one on a standard bed if you like a lot of pillow room.

Japanese Pillows – 14” x 20”

Japanese size pillows are smaller than standard pillows, ideal for those who don’t toss and turn during the night. Two of these pillows would fit a standard bed, with three to four needed for Queen and King sized beds.

Travel/child pillows – 11” x 16”

If you travel a lot, or if you’re looking for a child’s pillow the 11” x 16” sizes are ideal. One pillow will fit a child sized bed, whilst two can be used on a standard bed.

Common decorative pillow sizes

common decorative pillow sizes

  • Euro pillow (25″ x 25″) is a square pillow more commonly used as a decorative accent on beds or larger sofas.
  • Deco pillow (20″ x 20″, 18″ x 18″, 16″ x 16″) are also square pillows used for decoration, throw pillows, or lumbar pillows.
  • Boudoir pillow (12″ x 16″) also act as decorative pillows or support pillows on sofas and queen beds / king beds.
  • Neck roll pillow (6.5″ x 13″) are sometimes back sleepers people’s personal preferences, although more uncommonly used.

Does size matter?

There are a number of things to consider when choosing the right pillow and size is just one of them. Many people make their decision based upon aesthetic reasons. For example, you may prefer the look of bigger pillows on a standard bed. Or perhaps you prefer a more delicate, minimal design? Japanese size pillows are smaller and won’t take up as much room.
The amount of space on the pillow does make a difference. If you tend to toss and turn a lot in the night, a Queen or King sized pillow can provide the additional room you might need. However, size plays a much more important role than pure aesthetics or enabling you to toss and turn throughout the night. If you invest in the wrong size pillow it can actually cause a lot of pain.

When you lie on a pillow that is too big, it will push your head forward. This has the potential to push your spine forward too due to hypolordisis. If you sleep on your side, your head is pushed towards the ceiling. On the other hand, if your pillow is too small, it will flatten and straighten the spine and your neck won’t be fully supported. When you lie on your side, your head will be pushed downwards towards the bed. Neither of these situations is ideal and will cause you to wake up with a stiff neck.

So if your purely choose a pillow size based upon the size of your bed, you could end up suffering with a very stiff neck. You need to focus more on your body rather than your bed. If you are petite for example, it is likely you will need a small pillow, rather than a standard size. However, this isn’t always the case. Some petite people find they prefer a standard size pillow. So the key is to try out different sizes before discovering which is best for you.

How to tell if you’re using the wrong size pillow

There are a number of ways you can tell whether you’re currently using the wrong size pillow.

These include:
• You tend to wake up aching or in pain
• You don’t feel rested when you wake up
• You find it difficult turning your head after waking up
• You snore
• Your inner ear or ear hurts when you wake up
• You suffer with a stiff neck in the morning
• You don’t sleep very well

If you notice any of these symptoms then you may want to consider changing your pillow to see if it helps. Obviously there may be other underlying factors contributing to your sleep problems. However, a lot of the time it is down to what pillow combination you use, but many people just don’t think to look into it.

Why choose our Buckwheat pillows?

There are many reasons why our pillows are a good investment. If you’re unfamiliar with Buckwheat pillows, they are basically filled with Buckwheat husks that have been American grown. Before being filled into the pillows, they are cleaned in a three-step process to ensure all dust, debris and Buckwheat flour is removed. They are 100% organic which means they haven’t been treated with herbicides or pesticides. If you tend to have allergies to foam or feather pillows, these are a fantastic alternative.

No matter which size you choose, you want to ensure the firmness of the pillow fits your preferences. The great thing about our range of Buckwheat pillows is the fact you can customize the filling to ensure you achieve the right firmness to get a comfortable night’s sleep. Each pillow comes with a zipper, enabling you to remove some of the hulks if you find it is too firm. You can put them back if you find you’ve taken too many out.

We believe you should always have a comfortable night’s sleep. The size of your pillow does make a huge difference to not only the length of your sleep, but also the quality. Buckwheat hulls provide a lot of support for the head and neck and are considered a better pillow for side and back sleepers. Check out our range today to see why so many customers prefer our authentic Japanese Buckwheat pillows.


I enjoy sleeping on buckwheat hull pillows. You?

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7 comments on “Are You Using the Right Size Pillow?
  1. Great tips! definitely helpful for someone who is looking to buy a pillow.
    I bought a bamboo pillow a few days ago and it’s definitely worth the money.
    I no longer suffer from the allergies and I sleep a lot better too.

  2. Mike Rayan says:

    Thanks a lot for sharing such an informative and helpful post about using the right size of pillow. No doubt! I am so much impressed by your tips. keep posting such kind of information on your page. I will certainly dig it and personally suggest to my friends. I’m sure they’ll be benefited from this website.
    Thanks again.

  3. Astine Megerdichian says:

    Need buchweath travel size pillow need price

  4. Carmen says:

    Hello! This is very helpful, thank you. Just wondering, will a standard pillow cover (I know a case will, but I am referring to the protective cover) fit a queen size pillow?

  5. Ayesha says:

    I have really surprised to this topic thanks for this one really use full

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