How Long Do Cheap Pillows Last?
Comfortable bedding is crucial for a perfect night’s sleep, and pillows play an important role. The right pillow for your sleeping style will keep your head supported and it can be wonderful when we find the right one for us, but pillows have expiry dates.
Some pillows last longer than others depending on the materials they’re made from and how you care for them, so to get the most out of your purchase you need to know how to keep your pillows feeling fresh and crisp.
But do expensive pillows last longer than cheap pillows? How long does the average pillow last and how do you keep them looking as good as new? You’re about to find out.
How Often Should You Replace Your Pillows?
Advice from pillow experts varies on how often you should change your pillows, and the material inside the pillow affects how long pillows last. The average length of time you should have a pillow, however, is between 1 and 2 years. If you’ve had a pillow for longer than this, give it a test to see if it’s still up to scratch.
Pillows made from different materials last different lengths of time, so you don’t need to throw out your pillow immediately. Polyester-stuffed pillows last around a year but can be prolonged to 2 or 3 years if the polyester filling is dense and the pillow is being washed and fluffed.
Memory foam pillows last on average 2 to 3 years, but since they can’t be washed in a washing machine, they should be covered with a pillow protector as well as a pillowcase to stop dust, sweat and dead skin from entering the pillow.
Down and feather pillows can also last up to 3 years with proper care, however, if the pillows lose a lot of feathers and become flat, they can quickly become unsuitable to sleep on.
Usually, you can tell when it’s time to replace your pillow when you have neck, back or head pain in the morning because your head is no longer being supported. Or, even after washing, if the pillow is still very discoloured, it’s time to replace your pillow.
Do Unused Pillows Expire?
It’s important to note that this advice for how long pillows last is for pillows that are in regular use. The pillows you use to sleep with every night are being affected by the oils from your hair and skin, the weight of your head, and your sweat overnight if you’re a hot sleeper and don’t have the right tog duvet. This is why most pillows seem to have a relatively short lifespan of 1 to 2 years.
However, unused pillows don’t expire. So the pillows in your guest bedroom that are only used when you have friends or family come to stay, will last much longer than your own pillows.
Cheap Pillows vs Expensive Pillows
Some pillows can seem unnecessarily expensive, but when you think about how long you spend in bed and how important a good night’s sleep is to your mental and physical health (not to mention performance at work, school or in sports), a great pillow is an invaluable investment.
Of course, cheaper pillows still have their value, and if looked after well, can be incredibly cost-effective, but the quality and quantity of material will affect the price of the pillow as well as how long the pillow lasts. Therefore, it is fair to say that cheap pillows don’t last as long as expensive pillows, however, it’s also important to note that big brand names also add to the monetary value of a pillow, not necessarily adding any durability.
How Can You Tell When A Pillow Is Too Old?
One trick for working out if your pillow needs replacing is folding it in half and seeing what happens. If it doesn’t push itself open right away or just stays folded in half, it’s time to donate it to an animal shelter and get yourself a new pillow.
There are more obvious signs that you need a new pillow, such as:
- Neck pain
- Upper back pain
- Sensitive skin
- Allergic reactions
It’s unlikely you’ll experience each of these symptoms, especially if you look after your pillows, and you certainly shouldn’t wait for these things to happen before you invest in a new pillow, as this could be detrimental to your health.
But, since we sleep on them every night, it can be hard to tell when a pillow is getting older until it’s too late and we wake up one day with a sore neck. Often, most of us don’t know our pillow is too old until we spend a night at a friend’s place or in a hotel where we realise the pillows are much higher quality than the ones in our homes.
Don’t neglect your health, get that 5-star sleep at home.
How Do You Revive an Old Pillow
Thankfully, there are steps to take before rushing out and investing in a new pillow:
Different types of pillows need to be treated differently, as you can’t fluff or machine-wash memory foam pillows. But fortunately, for fibre-filled, polyester, down and feather pillows, you can shake them and push them around, hit them where necessary to evenly spread the filling, and you’ll have a wonderfully fresh and fluffy pillow to sleep on.
Fluffing is great after washing pillows or when you notice they’re feeling a bit flat, but something you can do more regularly, is flip your pillows over. This way it doesn’t always keep the same shape of your head and will hold onto its own shape for longer. If you sleep with two pillows or more – which might not be the best thing for your spine – swap the pillows over every now and then as well to help them stay fresher.
You should of course wash most pillows every 2 to 3 months and spot-wash memory foam pillows as needed, but you should also let your pillows get some fresh warm air. Just a few hours in a sunny and dry climate will get enough air through your pillow to dry out any sweat droplets and remove dust and dirt particles to help your pillow stay clean.
Most pillows can be washed, but if you’re not sure, refer to the care instructions that come with your pillow. If they don’t make sense to you or you simply don’t have time to wash and dry them yourself, it’s always a good idea to take them to the dry cleaners for expert treatment.
While you can’t wash memory foam pillows in a washing machine, you can rinse them thoroughly in cool water every six months, or sooner if you don’t have a pillow protector. You should also wash your pillowcases with the rest of your bedding, every week or two.
Unclean pillows can cause flare-ups of allergies and skin conditions such as acne due to the microbes in the pillow from our skin and the air, so to avoid any of these issues and replacing your pillow every few months, you should keep your pillows clean.
When to Buy a New Pillow
If you can’t revive your old pillow and even after washing and air drying, you’re still not getting a good night’s sleep or you’re suffering with pain or irritation each morning, it’s definitely time for a new pillow.
Ideally, you’d buy yourself a new pillow before this happens, but we understand that it’s not always as simple as that. Just make sure you care for your pillow so you can keep hold of it for longer.
Buy the Best Pillows
Bedding Comfort Store understands the importance of a great night’s sleep and wants to help you get dreamy 40 winks. Don’t settle when it comes to your sleep, settle down instead, with a high-quality, low-priced pillow.