Learn how to choose a non-toxic pillow made from eco-friendly materials that will provide the firmness and support you need for healthy sleep.
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Are you picky about your pillows? You should be! Not only is your pillow a close companion for eight hours a night, providing much needed support to your weary head and neck, but that same pillow could be off-gassing harmful chemicals while you sleep.
The good news is that when you are armed with the right information you can choose a pillow that is not only just right for the way you sleep, but that is perfectly safe and non-toxic too.
Best Non-Toxic Pillow Materials
Conventional pillows are typically made with synthetic foam and fabrics that may have been treated with chemicals including flame retardants, phthalates, formaldehyde and pesticides that could be harmful to your health. These same materials are usually non-biodegradable and bad for the planet as well.
When choosing your next pillow look for the following safe and eco-friendly materials:
Non-toxic pillow filling:
- GOLS certified organic latex (a foam alternative made from natural rubber)
- GOTS certified organic kapok (a fluffy, light, vegan alternative to down)
- BioFoam® memory foam blend that is GREENGUARD Gold Certified for low emissions
Non-toxic pillow covers:
- GOTS certified organic cotton
- Tencel® fabric (made from sustainable wood pulp)
How to Choose a Pillow Firmness Level
Another important consideration when choosing a pillow is the firmness and loft of the materials. Depending on how you sleep you’ll want a different firmness and thickness level in order to make sure you keep your head and neck in a neutral position.
Back sleepers usually need a pillow that has medium firmness in order to raise the neck off the mattress, but not too high. A memory foam pillow provides good support for back sleepers.
Side sleepers usually prefer a firmer pillow with a higher loft in order to make room for the shoulder and keep the neck in good alignment all night long. A firm latex pillow or a pillow with adjustable, fluffable fill is usually a good fit.
Stomach sleepers typically prefer a very thin and soft pillow. A pillow with adjustable fill including fluffy kapok can be a good option.
Non-Toxic Certifications to Look For
When shopping for a new pillow to go along with your non-toxic mattress, keep an eye out for these trusted, third-party certifications to ensure that the materials and final product are completely safe and non-toxic.
GOLS – Global Organic Latex Standard – A globally recognized standard for products made out of organically grown natural rubber latex. Monitors everything from raw material to finished product.
GOTS – Global Organic Textile Standard – An internationally recognized standard that ensures the organic status of textiles from the raw materials to the processing and manufacturing of finished products.
STANDARD 100 by OEKO-TEX® – An international, third-party certification that tests for more than one hundred harmful substances, including formaldehyde, banned colorants and heavy metals.
MADE SAFE® Certified – A rigorous certification where all products are screened for ingredients that are known or suspected to harm human health including flame retardants, heavy metals, carcinogens, endocrine disruptors, and more.
GREENGUARD Gold Certified – A certification that ensures that products meet strict chemical emissions limits for things like volatile organic compounds (VOCs), formaldehyde, and phthalates in order to reduce indoor air pollution and the risk of chemical exposure.
Excellent Non-Toxic Pillow Options
To help with your quest to find the perfect pillow, I’d like to introduce you to a few non-toxic pillows that I have tried and highly recommend!
This popular 100% organic pillow is filled with ribbons of latex rubber foam and fluffy kapok tree fiber and is customizable to the fill level of your choice. The fill is stuffed within an inner organic jersey cotton liner and then enclosed in a machine-washable, quilted organic cotton cover. Comes with a second liner bag for any extra fill not being used. Because it is adjustable, this pillow is versatile for back, side or stomach sleepers. MADE SAFE® Certified and GREENGUARD Gold Certified
This molded latex pillow is designed for back and side-sleepers and anyone who needs a firmer pillow for greater neck support. It is made from a solid piece of natural latex that has been infused with charcoal to help reduce odors and moisture, while managing temperature to keep you cool and dry. The latex is stuffed into a removable, organic certified cotton cover that is machine washable. GREENGUARD Gold Certified
This memory foam pillow is filled with a breathable cooling gel memory foam made with BioFoam® and a polyester blend. BioFoam® is a patented foam made in the U.S. from vegetable materials, such as corn, sunflower seeds, castor oil beans, and soybeans. The cover is made from a sustainable Tencel® material and an inner zippered chamber allows you to add or remove fill so you can adjust to your preference. Great for back or side sleepers. GREENGUARD Gold Certified
Do you have a favorite non-toxic pillow? Let me know the details in the comments!