EachNight may earn commissions for products you purchase through links on our site. Our articles include affiliate links and advertisements, including Amerisleep, LLC advertising. Learn more Updated July 12, 2021It’s easy to overlook how important pillows are, but your pillow firmness can make the difference between restful sleep and a night of tossing and turning. Most of us imagine soft and fluffy pillows to be the most comfortable and luxurious, but the right pillow firmness comes down to your size and sleeping position.Firm pillows are a great option for side sleepers and plus-sized people since they both need extra support to keep their heads and necks aligned with their spines. We’ve made a list of some of the best firm pillows available to help you start sleeping better and prevent neck pain.Best Firm PillowBest Firm Pillow Overall: Amerisleep Dual Comfort PillowBest Cooling Firm Pillow: Zoma PillowBest Budget Firm Pillow: Vaya PillowBest Firm PillowPillowHighlightsPriceAmerisleep Dual Comfort PillowUnique dual-sided pillow has both firm and soft sides$130Zoma PillowAdjustable MicroCushions™ make it easy to mold this pillow to suit your needs$75Vaya PillowBudget pillow with shredded foam fill doesn’t need regular fluffing to maintain its shape$60Saatva Latex PillowFirm pillow provides hotel-like luxury with fluffy, fibrous outer layer$155Avocado Green PillowIncludes an extra bag of latex and kapok filling for maximum customizability$89Purple Harmony PillowPurple Grid™ Hex soothes pressure and features thousands of cooling air channels$159 Best Firm Pillow Overall: Amerisleep Dual Comfort Pillow Price: $130-$170Pillow Fill: Bio-Pur®Pillow Loft: 5 or 6 inchesPillow Firmness: AdjustableBest for most types of sleepers, people with neck pain, and hot sleepersAvailable in queen and king Warranty 10 Years Sleep Trial N/A Shipping FreeRecommended ForMost types of sleepersNeck pain sufferersHot sleepersPillow HighlightsDual-sided pillow has both a firm and soft sideBio-Pur® memory foam is both cooling and responsiveTapered edges provide extra neck and shoulder supportSave Save With Free Shipping on the Amerisleep Dual Comfort Pillow with our discount code. Claim Deal You’ve heard of dual-sided mattresses, but have you heard of dual-sided pillows? The Amerisleep Dual Comfort Pillow features both a firm and soft side to suit all sorts of sleep styles and promote healthy spinal alignment. It also comes in two different lofts: 5 or 6-inch.The Dual Comfort Pillow is made from Bio-Pur®, a plant-based memory foam Amerisleep uses in nearly all of their mattresses. This CertiPUR-US® certified foam is more cooling and responsive than normal memory foam so you never feel hot or “stuck.”The firm side of the pillow works well for side sleepers and plus-sized people who place more pressure on their beds. The soft side of the pillow is a good choice for back and combo sleepers since they need more cushioning to stay aligned. Both sides of the Dual Comfort Pillow feature a small arch to support the neck better—similar to a contour pillow.The Dual Comfort Pillow includes free shipping and returns, plus a 10-year warranty.SEE ALSO: Amerisleep Mattress Review Best Cooling Firm Pillow: Zoma Pillow Price: $75-$95Pillow Fill: MicroCushions™Pillow Loft: AdjustablePillow Firmness: AdjustableBest for athletes and active people, chronic pain sufferers, most types of sleepers, and hot sleepersAvailable in queen and king Warranty 10 Years Sleep Trial N/A Shipping FreeRecommended ForAthletes and active peopleMost types of sleepersNeck pain sufferersHot sleepersPillow HighlightsStretchy mesh cover fabric promotes air circulationMicroCushions™ shape to any loft or firmnessCooling foam relieves pressure to foster undisrupted sleepSave Save With Free Shipping on the Zoma Pillow with our discount code. Claim Deal The Zoma Pillow is one of our favorite adjustable pillows for hot sleepers. With a lightweight mesh cover and a fill made from cooling MicroCushions™, the Zoma Pillow doesn’t trap heat and maximizes airflow. With its adjustable fill, this pillow can work with any sleeping position.MicroCushions™ are a shredded foam you can mold into any shape or firmness you please. For a firmer pillow, squeeze the MicroCushions™ to make them feel more stiff and solid. If you ever want your pillow to feel softer, gently fluff and break apart the MicroCushions™. Zoma Pillow customers even note how easy it is to adjust the pillow to whatever firmness they need!With the Zoma Pillow, you receive free shipping and returns and a 10-year warranty.SEE ALSO: Zoma Mattress Review Best Budget Firm Pillow: Vaya Pillow Price: $60-$85Pillow Fill: Vaya Foam BlendPillow Loft: AdjustablePillow Firmness: AdjustableBest for budget shoppers, most types of sleepers, people with neck pain, and hot sleepersAvailable in queen and king Warranty 10 Years Sleep Trial N/A Shipping FreeRecommended ForBudget shoppersMost types of sleepersNeck pain sufferersHot sleepersPillow HighlightsBudget pillow with cooling, high-quality foamsVaya Foam Blend is hypoallergenic and breathablePillow requires little-to-no fluffing to maintainSave Save With Free Shipping on the Vaya Pillow with our discount code. Claim Deal You don’t need to spend hundreds of dollars for a high-quality and supportive pillow. The Vaya Pillow is an adjustable loft pillow offered at a reasonable price. The pillow feels firm or soft and thick or thin based on how you mold it. Plus, the pillow’s cover is breathable to keep air circulating.The Vaya Pillow contains proprietary Vaya Foam Blend, a shredded foam. The Vaya Foam Blend conforms to your head and neck to relieve pain and help you sleep better. Also, it draws away body heat so you don’t have to worry about getting too hot at night. You won’t need to fluff the pillow to keep it lofty since the Vaya Foam Blend bounces into shape quickly.Vaya offers free shipping and returns for the Vaya Pillow.SEE ALSO: Vaya Mattress Review Best Latex Firm Pillow: Saatva Latex Pillow Price: $155-$175Pillow Fill: Latex and microdenier fiberPillow Loft: AdjustablePillow Firmness: Firm (8 on the firmness scale)Best for eco-conscious shoppers, most types of sleepers, and hot sleepersAvailable in queen and king Warranty 1 Year Sleep Trial 45 Nights Shipping FreeRecommended ForEco-conscious shoppersMost types of sleepersHot sleepersPillow HighlightsDown-like microfibers add extra fluffiness and pillow loftTalalay latex core supports the head and neckStandard 100 by OEKO-TEX® and eco-INSTITUT® certifiedSave Save With Free Shipping on the Saatva Latex Pillow with our discount code. Claim Deal If you want your bed to resemble a luxury hotel, start with getting Saatva Latex Pillows. These fluffy, yet firm pillows contain a blend of latex and down alternative fibers.Right under the cotton pillow protector is a down-like microdenier fiber. It makes this otherwise firm pillow feel slightly more luxurious and plush while also helping you stay cool while sleeping.Inside the microdenier fiber layer is a Talalay latex core which provides excellent head and neck support to prevent pain. It’s cooling and won’t trap heat the way some other foams do. Talalay latex is also naturally buoyant, doesn’t trap allergies, and is resistant to dust mites and mildew.With the Saatva Latex pillow, you receive free shipping and returns and a 45-night sleep trial.SEE ALSO: What is a Talalay Latex Mattress? Best Organic Firm Pillow: Avocado Green Pillow Price: $89-$109Pillow Fill: Latex and kapokPillow Loft: AdjustablePillow Firmness: AdjustableBest for eco-conscious shoppers, most types of sleepers, and hot sleepersAvailable in standard, queen, and king Warranty 1 Year Sleep Trial 100 Nights Shipping FreeRecommended ForEco-conscious shoppersMost types of sleepersHot sleepersPillow HighlightsKapok and latex fill is cooling and sustainablePillow comes with an extra bag of fill for ultimate customizabilityHypoallergenic, biodegradable, non-toxic, and pesticide-free pillowSave Save With Free Shipping on the Avocado Green Pillow with our discount code. Claim Deal The Avocado Green Pillow is an organic and non-toxic pillow with an adjustable fill. With almost 5,000 reviews and 4.5 out of 5 stars, the Avocado Green Pillow is Avocado’s most popular pillow. Initially, the pillow has a medium-firm feel, but with the extra fill, you can make the pillow a true firm to suit your needs.The pillow is made with a blend of latex and kapok. The latex is GOLS organic certified, while the kapok tree fibers are GOTS organic certified. The pillow’s machine washable cover is made from GOTS organic and Standard 100 by OEKO-TEX® certified cotton.The Avocado Green Pillow includes a 100-night trial, a 1-year warranty, and free shipping and returns.SEE ALSO: Bed Pillow Sizes Guide Best Firm Pillow for Back Sleepers: Purple Harmony Pillow Price: $159-$199Pillow Fill: Purple Grid® Hex and LatexPillow Loft: Low, medium, or tall (5.5, 6.5, or 7.5 inches)Pillow Firmness: Firm (8 on the firmness scale)Best for most types of sleepers, hot sleepers, and neck pain sufferersAvailable in standard and king Warranty 1 Year Sleep Trial 100 Nights Shipping FreeRecommended ForMost types of sleepersHot sleepersNeck pain sufferersPillow HighlightsPurple Grid® Hex foam ease pressure without being too softBuilt-in air channels ensure the pillow stays coolTalalay latex core keeps the pillow springy and durableSave Save With Free Shipping on the Purple Harmony Pillow with our discount code. Claim Deal The Purple Harmony Pillow combines features from Purple’s patented mattress foam with latex for a firm and supportive feel. The pillow’s core is made from Talalay latex and is then wrapped in a layer of Purple Grid® Hex foam.Purple Grid® Hex is a variation of Purple’s famous Purple Grid®, a hyperelastic polymer foam featured in all of Purple’s mattresses. This grid-like foam is springy and rapidly relieves pressure points and pain. It contains built-in air channels to keep you cool throughout the night. The Hex variation of Purple Grid® has the same characteristics as the standard one, only it’s honeycomb-shaped.The Purple Harmony Pillow comes with free shipping and returns.SEE ALSO: Purple Mattress ReviewsWho Should Sleep on a Firm Pillow?Firm pillows are excellent for people who need neck and head support. We often recommend them as pillows for side sleepers because their style creates the largest gap between the mattress and their neck. This gap leaves room for the head to curve and cause misalignment and neck pain.Pillows for back sleepers should usually offer a softer feel to cradle the head, although many back sleepers may still enjoy the support of a firm pillow.Types of Firm Pillow FillsPillow fill is the primary material your pillow contains. A pillow’s fill affects factors including its feels, durability, and price. Not all fills are equal, whether it be in terms of firmness or comfort. To make choosing the best pillow easier, let’s cover some common fills.Memory FoamMemory foam pillows are a great choice if you struggle with chronic muscle or joint pain. It contours under your body’s curves to prevent pressure points and help you sleep comfortably.A problem memory foam owners complain about is how the material traps heat easily, which affects the foam’s responsiveness and bounce. Avoid hot and uncomfortable memory foam by shopping for memory foam infused with gel or graphite.Memory foam pillows come in either shredded or block variations. Shredded memory foam is tiny pieces of foam in one pillow. It’s a malleable and slightly softer material but makes up for it by being extra breathable. Block memory foam is a single, large piece of memory foam known for being sturdy, durable, and firm.SEE ALSO: How to Wash a Memory Foam PillowLatexLatex is a natural type of foam derived from rubber tree sap. Compared to memory foam, it’s more springy and cool, plus it’s sustainable. However, latex doesn’t offer quite as much pressure relief compared to memory foam.When shopping for a latex pillow, we suggest looking for 100 percent natural latex fills. Blended and synthetic latex fills are cheaper than natural latex, but also contain harsh, toxic chemicals. They also won’t last as long as natural latex, either. Natural latex doesn’t trap allergens, promotes a cooling pillow, lasts longer than any other foam, and promotes proper spinal alignment.Like memory foam, latex pillows come in both shredded and block forms. Block latex pillows are naturally firmer, but if you prefer adjustability and coolness, you can still find firmer shredded latex pillows.DownDown is one of the most well-known pillow fills out there, having a high loft and a luxurious feel. Down is the soft, fluffy feathers from a goose’s underbelly. While the down pillows are both plush and lightweight, they’re still durable and breathable.The problem with down is that it isn’t firm or supportive. It feels luxurious and cloud-like, but won’t support your head and neck the way a foam pillow does. Despite its bad support, down is expensive and requires lots of fluffing to keep it lofty.Down AlternativeAlso called polyester or fiberfill, down alternative is popular for its affordability and accessibility. This lightweight fill is easy to care for and hypoallergenic, so it’s great for allergy sufferers.While down alternative is cheap and available nearly everywhere, it’s not the best fill out there. The fibers lump together and go flat rapidly, and down alternative traps heat and moisture more than other types of fills. Unless you’re on a tight budget, it’s best to consider other pillows over a down alternative pillow.BuckwheatBuckwheat is a unique and sustainable pillow fill first popularized in Japan. A buckwheat pillow contains buckwheat hulls—not the seed itself—and is naturally firm, breathable, and malleable.While buckwheat hull pillows are durable and supportive, they can feel stiff for some. Not only that, but buckwheats are a heavy material, which makes it difficult to quickly move your pillow around at night. Worst of all, buckwheat hulls rustle and crunch against each other, making them one of the noisier types of pillows out there.WaterWhile they may sound odd, water pillows are a great firm option for people dealing with chronic pain. Water pillows are vinyl bags of water wrapped in a soft casing. Some water pillows even include foam outer layers to be extra pressure-relieving and comfortable.The main issue with water pillows is they can be quite cold and heavy compared to other pillow fills. Plus, there’s always the risk of leaks with a water pillow. If your water pillow somehow rips, it can soak both you and your mattress, which can possibly void your mattress’s warranty.FAQsWhat is the best pillow for stomach sleeping?When stomach sleeping, people do best with low-loft, soft pillows. Too thick or firm of a pillow can curl your neck unnaturally, causing stiffness and pain. If anything, some stomach sleepers may prefer using no pillow at all! Even then, some pillows we recommend for stomach sleeping include the Avocado Green Pillow, Vaya Pillow, and Zoma Pillow.What is the best firm memory foam pillow?If you prefer memory foam pillows, we always recommend looking for memory foam infused with cooling materials such as gel or plant-based memory foam. Infused and plant-based memory foams perform better than traditional memory foam and last longer.Several great firm memory foam pillows include the Zoma Pillow and Amerisleep Dual Comfort Pillow.Is a latex or memory foam pillow firmer?Both latex and memory foam pillows come in different firmness levels. Even then, memory foam is typically slightly softer than latex as it has a “hug-like,” soft to the touch feel. Latex pillows have more push-back than memory foam ones and feel firmer to the touch. Plus, latex pillows are springier and bounce back into shape quicker than memory foam pillows.Who should use a firm pillow?Firm pillows work well for people who need extra support to keep their bodies aligned. People who sleep on their side are usually happy with firm pillows as there’s no risk of their heads curving and leading to neck pain. Plus-sized people also generally prefer firm pillows as they place more pressure on them.Stomach sleepers and petite people usually need softer pillows to prevent pressure build-up or pain. Some back sleepers prefer firm pillows, but others may do better on soft or medium ones.Are soft or firm pillows better for neck pain?Finding the right pillow firmness for your neck pain is based on sleeping position more than anything else. Your pillow should be just firm enough to align your spine without being stiff under your head and neck.If you sleep on your side, a firm pillow will be best for alleviating neck pain. Conversely, back sleepers do best with medium or medium-firm pillows while stomach sleepers need soft pillows.ConclusionFirm pillows are underrated, but they provide necessary head and neck support for side sleepers and larger people. After investing hundreds, if not thousands of dollars into the perfect mattress, it’s time to put that same effort into your pillow choices. Use our guide to compare different pillow lofts, fills, and benefits to make the right purchase for your preferences.About the author Narwan AminiAfter graduating with her Bachelor of Arts degree, Narwan Amini set out to connect with others through writing and narration. She’s often intrigued by sleep’s impact on all aspects of life and aims to assist others in achieving a good night’s sleep. Being multilingual, she’s able to reach a larger audience and hopes to share the importance of restorative sleep and quality bedding. Find more articles by Narwan Comments Cancel replyLeave a CommentYour email address will not be published. Required fields are marked * Comment Name Email I agree to the Terms and Conditions of this website.