Memory Foam Pillows

Best Memory Foam Pillows Review UK (2024)

Last updated: 31.10.2023 Reading time: 11 Min.

You shouldn’t put up with a pillow that isn’t doing its job! 🤨

A memory foam pillow could be just the upgrade you need for a better night's sleep.

Memory foam pillows can help to align your spine and neck during the night.

They are also a great way to give your head and shoulders the support they need. 🥰

We’ve done the hard work for you and found you the best memory foam pillows UK!

Best Memory Foam Pillows UK

Best memory foam pillow UK

Sleep Hero Favourite

Panda London Hybrid Bamboo Pillow

The Panda Hybrid pillow is a Sleep Hero favourite made from orthopaedic grade, adaptive CharcoCell foam.
  • CharcoCell foam & 100% bamboo cover
  • Medium-firm
  • Machine-washable cover 

Tell me more about the Panda Hybrid Bamboo pillow

The Panda Hybrid Bamboo pillow is one of the best pillows we've ever tested. 

The foam is blended with activated bamboo charcoal, which regulates temperature, wicks away moisture, and neutralises odours.

We found the pillow particularly comfortable for side sleeping.

The foam gently cradles the head and supports the neck at the correct height, aligning it with the spine. 

The BambooCloud quilted cover is kind and gentle to the skin, indulgently soft and also fully washable. 

We're also very pleased to know that Panda London makes these pillows using sustainable materials and practices. 

Reasons to buy

30-night trial period 

Unmatched 10-year guarantee

One of the most comfortable pillows we've tested 

Reasons to avoid

Not adjustable 

Unsuitable for stomach sleepers 

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Very Firm

Emma Original Pillow

The Emma Original pillow is a height-adjustable pillow with customisable layers.
  • Memory foam, Airgocell foam, & cold foam
  • Adjustable layers 
  • Machine-washable cover

Tell me more about the Emma Original Pillow

The Emma Original pillow consists of three different foam layers, including cold foam, Airgocell foam, and memory foam.

You can conveniently add or remove these layers as you wish and adjust both the height and the firmness of the pillow.

We recommend using one layer for stomach sleepers, two layers for back sleepers and three layers for side sleepers. 

However, the cover only opens partially, which made it difficult to remove the cover for washing or adjusting the layers.

It has a firm feel, ideal for those who like to sleep atop their pillow without too much sinking. 

It's also fairly warmer compared to other pillows we've tested. 

Reasons to buy

200-night trial period 

Adjustable design 

30-night sleep trial

Reasons to avoid

Quite warm compared to other pillows 

Not easy to remove the layers 

The firm feel may not suit everyone

Customisable Comfort

Simba Hybrid Pillow

The Simba Hybrid Pillow is an excellent choice for those in need of adjustable support.
  • Shredded memory foam
  • Medium-firm
  • Fully adjustable 

Tell me more about the Simba Hybrid Pillow

The Simba Hybrid pillow offers comfort and support to a wide range of sleepers.

It features unique memory foam "nanocubes" that can be added and removed to best suit your preferences.

The shredded memory foam also gives the pillow a more traditional feel.  

The Simba Hybrid pillow also features astronaut-inspired temperature-regulating technology that absorbs, stores and releases heat as needed.  

The Simba Hybrid pillow cover is removable and machine-washable.

This makes it a great choice for people prone to allergies. 

Reasons to buy

Fully adjustable height and firmness

Machine-washable cover 

1-year guarantee

Reasons to avoid

Quite expensive 

No trial period 

Feels Like Down

Aeyla FOAMO Pillow

The Aeyla FOAMO Pillow features a bamboo cover with a fill of shredded cooling memory foam.
  • Gel-infused shredded memory foam & bamboo pillowcase
  • Adjustable height and firmness 
  • 30-night trial 

Tell me more about the Aeyla FOAMO Pillow

The Aeyla FOAMO Pillow is a state-of-the-art adjustable pillow.

It comes fully stuffed with easy-to-store spare fill and a dual-case zip system to add or remove the fill material.

The fill is made from shredded, gel-infused memory foam for optimal support and temperature regulation.

The FOAMO pillow has a medium-firm feel, though this does depend on the stuffing level.

The pillow cover is made from temperature-regulating bamboo, which further helps keep the pillow cool for a more comfortable sleep. 

You can wash the cover at 40℃, but be sure to remove all fill material first.

Reasons to buy

Fully adjustable to your needs

Great temperature regulation

30-night trial

Reasons to avoid

Fill must be removed before washing

Can be finicky to add/remove and store excess foam

Firmer Feel

Brightr Eclipse Firm Memory Foam Pillow

The Brightr Eclipse is a firm memory foam pillow designed for orthopaedic support.
  • Graphene memory foam & copper-infused polyester cover
  • Medium firm to firm 
  • Adjustable layers 

Tell me more about the Brightr Eclipse Firm Memory Foam Pillow

The Brightr Eclipse Firm Memory Foam Pillow features a unique 4-layer adjustable design.

It is an ergonomic memory foam pillow that cradles your neck and head, promoting proper alignment and reducing tension and discomfort. 

This makes it an ideal choice for side sleepers who require extra support.

Brightr uses cooling graphene memory foam, which helps regulate temperature and wicks away moisture. 

Instead of one solid chunk of memory foam, Brightr has split it into four layers that slot together like Tetris pieces to design your perfect pillow height and firmness level.

The Eclipse pillow's signature copper-infused cover provides protection against allergens and bacteria that can cause breakouts.

Reasons to buy

30-night trial period 

Ergonomic support for back & neck pain

Antimicrobial copper cover 

Reasons to avoid

Won't be suitable for people who want a soft, mouldable pillow

Luxury Option

Tempur Comfort Cloud Pillow

The Tempur Comfort Cloud pillow is a premium memory foam pillow.
  • Extra-soft Tempur material & cotton cover
  • Soft feel & medium soft 
  • Washable cover 

Tell me more about the Tempur Comfort Cloud pillow

The Tempur Comfort Cloud pillow has a soft, cloud-like feeling and gently cradles the head and shoulders.

The inner foam includes extra-soft Tempur micro-cushions that relieve pressure and adapt to the head and shoulders. 

Unlike the Tempur Comfort pillow, it has a lower loft and softer feel, perfect for those who want to sink more deeply into a pillow. 

This makes it ideal for back sleepers who need a pillow that hugs around the head and shoulders without bending the neck upwards too much.   

The outer Tempur pillows Cloud cover is machine-washable for long-lasting freshness. 

Reasons to buy

30-night trial period

3-year guarantee

Great support for back sleepers 

Reasons to avoid


Unsuitable for stomach sleepers 

What is memory foam?

Memory foam is a material made from viscoelastic polyurethane foam.

astronaut sitting on tempur mattress
NASA first developed memory foam.

Originally developed by NASA, memory foam was created to absorb g-shock in space seats...🚀

The material was so good at relieving pressure from the body that in 1991, Tempur developed the first memory foam mattress.

Memory foam can conform and change shape when contact with the body is made.

When that contact is released, the material returns to its original shape.

memory foam

memory foam with hand

memory foam imprint

Hence the reason we call it “memory foam”.

But not all memory foam feels the same…🤔

High-quality memory foam vs cheap memory foam

High-quality memory foam has an open-cell structure and is more sensitive.

This means it moulds around the body more easily and can give a weightless feeling... 🎈

Cheaper memory foam is less conforming to the body and is unable to relieve pressure in the same way.

High-quality memory foam has a liquid-like feel, filling every space between you and the pillow. 🌊

person laying on memory foam
Memory foam moulds around your body shape

Cheap foam is more “bouncy” like a sponge and will resist against the body, which can put pressure on the neck and joints.

We recommend investing in a good-quality memory pillow for the best results.

Are memory foam pillows good for neck pain?

A good quality memory foam pillow can make a difference in a restful night’s sleep. 😴

If you’re waking up with neck pain, this might be because your pillow is bending your spine or neck too much during the night.

men with back and neck pain
A too-firm foam pillow or one that lacks support can cause aches and pains.

Likewise, pillows with no support will straighten the spine or neck, creating tension. 😬

Memory foam doesn’t resist against the body like other pillow fillings.

Instead, it moulds itself around pressure points for a good night's sleep.

You can even buy memory foam neck pillows, such as the Tempur Queen Original, that follow the natural shape of the neck.


Memory foam pillows for neck pain
Memory foam can help to relieve pressure on the neck.

Whilst memory foam can make a great support pillow, they aren’t a cure for injury or health problems.

Memory foam pillows can help take the strain off the spine or neck.

However, you should always seek medical advice for any underlying health conditions. 👨‍⚕️

Types of memory foam pillows

Memory foam pillows come in all shapes and sizes to suit your needs.

They can come as a thick or thin, or a soft or firm foam pillow.

We’ve got some examples of different types of memory foam pillows below. 👇

Shredded memory foam pillows

Shredded memory foam pillows contain chopped-up pieces of memory foam.

shredded foam pillow graphic
Shredded foam pillows are more breathable.

This means they have an adjustable height by removing or adding more foam.

In general, shredded foam pillows are the most breathable as air can ventilate between the shredded foam.

We highly recommend the Simba Hybrid pillow made with open-cell foam Nanocubes with airflow technology.

It comes with a machine-washable cover and a little bag to store any foam that you remove.


Layered memory foam pillows

Layered memory foam pillows are usually made of 3 or more layers.

memory foam pillow layer
You can customise your pillow height by removing layers

Layered pillows are often adjustable, meaning you can remove the layers to create your ideal pillow height.

Different layered inserts mean each layer can have a different benefit (ie. cooling layer, memory foam layer, support layer).

Layered foam pillows are made with solid foam layers, meaning they aren’t as breathable as shredded memory foam pillows.

Gel memory foam pillows

Gel pillows feel similar to memory foam but can help to regulate body heat.

Gel pillow graphic
Gel foam pillows regulate body temperature

Gel pillows are made with temperature-regulating technology that absorbs heat and keeps you feeling cool.

Gel pillows are often made with polyurethane encased in plastic, which means they’re not as sustainable as some other pillow choices.

The Aeyla Foamo pillow is made with gel-infused memory foam and has a cooling bamboo cover.


Take a look at our cool pillow review for more recommendations.

Ergonomic pillows

Ergonomic or contour memory foam pillows are designed to follow the shape of the body for a more supported sleep.

ergonomic pillow graphic
Ergonomic pillows support the neck and spine

These pillows are contoured in a cervical or wave shape designed for optimal neck support. 🥰

They can help relieve pressure on the neck and shoulders to prevent waking up with aches and pains.

These are firm foam pillows that some people find uncomfortable.

Ergonomic pillows are in a fixed contoured shape, which isn’t ideal for those who move positions during the night.

The Tempur Original Queen pillow is a luxury neck pillow with 30 years of experience in NASA-developed memory foam technology.

But cheaper pillows, like the Groove pillow and the Derila pillow, also have ergonomic shapes.

How to choose a memory foam pillow

There are all kinds of things to consider when buying a pillow.

Consider these criteria before you buy a memory foam pillow:

  • Is my current pillow uncomfortable?
  • What's my budget for a memory foam pillow?
  • Does the memory foam pillow come with a sleep trial?
  • How long is the guarantee on the memory foam pillow?
  • Are there cheaper but similar alternatives available?
  • Do I need a soft memory foam pillow or a firm memory foam pillow?
  • What memory foam pillow do I need for my sleeping position?

You should consider your personal preference and requirements when buying a pillow. ⚖️

Only buy what you can reasonably afford and check for discounts or alternative payment options if you’re looking to stretch the budget.

And whilst reviews can be great, you should use your own judgement when deciding whether or not you should buy a product.

Sleeping position

Many people don’t realise that the wrong pillow for your sleeping position can contribute to an uncomfortable sleep! 🤯

If you’re waking up with pain in your neck or lower back, this could be due to sleeping on a pillow too high or low for your sleep position.

So, what are the best memory foam pillows for your sleeping position?

Best pillow for side sleepers

Side sleepers need a high loft and firm memory foam pillow that fills the space between the shoulder and head.

The pillow should be high enough to align the spine in a neutral position. 😃

side sleeper memory foam pillow
Side sleepers need a firm memory foam pillow.

Side sleeper pillows should also be low enough to support the natural curve of the neck.

In other words, you shouldn’t feel your neck bending upwards or down when laying on the pillow!

A memory foam pillow is ideal for side sleepers as the contouring foam can relieve pressure from the head, neck, and shoulders. ❤️

The Simba Hybrid pillow is a great option for side sleepers.

The Nanocube shredded foam moulds around the head and shoulders to relieve pressure.


Best pillow for stomach sleepers

Stomach sleepers need a low loft pillow that helps to keep the neck aligned with the spine.

A soft memory foam pillow is ideal for cushioning the head when sleeping on your stomach. 😍

stomach sleeper memory foam pillow
Stomach sleepers need a soft memory foam pillow.

Sleeping on your front puts the most pressure on the spine. 😬

If you’re waking up with back pain, this could be due to spine misalignment during the night.

Try sleeping with a low pillow or no pillow at all and see if that helps.

A pillow with removable layers, such as the Emma Premium pillow, is also ideal.

This way, you can opt for just one or two layers and add more if you adjust to a new sleeping position.


Best pillow for back sleepers

Back sleeping is the best position for a night of healthy sleep.

🤰 However, research [1] shows sleeping on your back in the third trimester of pregnancy can restrict blood flow and oxygen to your baby. Instead, try sleeping on your side with a body pillow to support your back and bump.

Back sleepers need a medium-height and feel pillow that cushions the head and shoulders.

back sleeper memory foam pillow
Back sleepers need a medium and supportive pillow.

A back sleeper pillow should be low enough to help align the spine and neck.

If you feel as if your neck is bending when sleeping on your back, opt for a lower or softer pillow.

We highly recommend the Tempur Comfort Cloud for back sleepers.

The NASA-approved Tempur material helps keep the spine and neck neutrally aligned whilst moulding around the head and shoulders.

Memory foam pillow alternatives

Okay, so you've decided that perhaps a memory foam pillow is not for you.

Don't worry! 😅

There are a ton of fantastic alternatives available for you to try instead.

types of pillows
There are many types of pillows available.

It's important to consider what you desire from your pillow and what aspects you don't enjoy about your current pillow.

We'll consider some different types of pillows below.

Latex pillows

Latex is a highly sustainable material that comes from tree sap.

latex pillows pros and cons
Latex is more eco-friendly than memory foam.

Latex pillows have a similar feel to memory foam but are cooler and have a more responsive "bounce back" feeling.

Relyon Superior Comfort Deep Latex pillows are made from 100% pure latex and have firm support ideal for side sleepers.


Hollowfibre/microfibre pillows

Hollowfibre and microfibre pillows are one of the cheapest and most accessible pillows available. 💰

hollowfibre pros and cons

Made with polyester, most people have owned a hollowfibre pillow in their lifetime.

The Kally Sleep Adjustable Pillow is our favourite hollowfibre pillow.

It also comes with a removable 100% cotton cover, ideal for those who sweat during sleep.


Feather and down pillows

Feather and down pillows have been around for centuries, and for good reason! 🦆

feather and down pillow pros and cons

Just like memory foam, these feather and down alternatives conform to your head and neck shape.

Feather pillows are a great option for those who like to sink into their pillow.

We're obsessed with the Hypnos Feather and Down pillows made from luxurious duck feathers and down with a 300-thread count cotton cover.


How to keep a memory foam pillow clean

When investing in a good-quality memory foam pillow, you must do everything you can to help it last as long as possible! 🤗

How to wash a memory foam pillow

Most memory foam pillows cannot be washed in the washing machine.

do not wash memory foam pillow
Most memory foam pillows are non-washable.

Washing a memory foam pillow can destroy viscoelastic technology inside the pillow and break up its core components. 🧽

Some memory foam pillows come with a removable outer cover that is machine washable. 🧼

After undressing your pillow, pop it near an open window for a few hours to let it air out and remove moisture.

washing a pillow cover
Some memory foam pillows include washable covers.

Always check with the manufacturer first to see if your pillow or the removable cover can be washed.

Pillow protectors

You should use a pillow protector as well as a pillowcase for a fully protected sleep. ☔

This is even more important for memory foam pillows, which can get damaged if they get into contact with liquids.

We highly recommend Eve pillow protectors as they are made from cotton, which helps to wick away moisture during the night.

This will help prevent moisture build-up and protect the pillow from accidents.

Memory foam pillow sizes

Memory foam pillows come in all shapes and sizes.

Standard UK size memory foam pillows measure just under 50 x 75 cm (20" x 20".)

You should use a regular pillowcase with around 1 inch of extra space on each side.

traditional shaped pillow
Traditional memory foam pillows can fit inside a regular pillowcase.

Ergonomic and shaped pillows come in their own unique shape and size.

Some brands, such as Tempur, also offer small memory foam pillows and memory foam travel pillows.

For these pillows, you will need a pillowcase designed specifically for these pillows.

You should check the care instructions on the manufacturer's website for more information about the sizing and requirements.

Take a look at our top picks for pillowcases:

Memory foam pillow prices

Memory foam pillows aren't cheap.

In fact, they're one of the most expensive types of pillows you can buy.

You can buy cheap memory foam pillows from Argos, but they're going to be of lower quality and lack guarantees that ensure your pillow lasts.

people with money
Memory foam pillows can be expensive.

A good quality memory foam pillow will cost anywhere between £35 - £100.

Some companies also offer payment plans so you can spread the cost of your pillow.

Memory foam pillow discount codes

Luckily, you can also get great deals on memory foam pillows.

The best memory foam pillow sales are during Black Friday, Christmas and Easter.

Some brands also offer unique memory foam pillow voucher codes.

12% OFF with:
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Our discounts page keeps you updated with all the latest codes and offers. 💰

How long does a memory foam pillow last?

Memory foam pillows have different lifespans, depending on the manufacturer... 🤨

Hollow-fibre pillows usually only have a one-year warranty.

However, memory foam pillows typically last around 2 or 3 years.

hollowfibre pillowsw vs memory foam
Memory foam pillows last longer than hollowfibre pillows.

Some pillows, like the Panda memory foam pillow and MyPillow, can last as long as 10 years! 😱

To help your memory foam pillow last as long as possible, you should use a pillow protector to protect it from any accidents.

Before purchasing a memory foam pillow, check with the manufacturer to see what kind of warranty it comes with. 🤔

Take a look at these decade-lasting memory foam pillows:

Should I buy a memory foam pillow?

The perfect pillow means something different to everyone . . .

Whilst memory foam pillows are a great choice for many people, only you can decide if they are right for you! 😁

Consider your budget, lifestyle, and sleeping position before choosing a memory foam pillow.

Memory foam isn't the right pillow for everyone.

Our best pillow review recommends our favourite pillows in the UK.

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Frequently asked questions

  • Why does my memory foam pillow have a weird smell?

    When you first get your pillow, you might notice it has a strange smell. 

    New memory foam pillows release a chemical smell, which is known as off-gassing. [2] 

    Some people don’t notice this smell at all, whilst others are more sensitive and can find it difficult to sleep with this odour.  

    If the smell is bothering you, leave your new pillow in a room for a few days before using it. 

    Once your pillow has finished off-gassing, it should no longer smell. 

  • Are memory foam pillows safe?

    Since memory foam pillows are made with chemicals, you may be wondering if they are safe to use. 

    Memory foam pillows are often manufactured with volatile organic compounds (VOCs) toxins, which can have harmful effects. 

    However, most products contain these compounds, including clothes, furniture, and paint. 

    If you are concerned, look for memory foam pillows that are OEKO-Tex [3] certified. 

    This means they tested against harmful substances that go above and beyond the international standard. 

  • Are memory foam pillows hard?

    Some memory foam pillows can feel harder than regular pillows, particularly when you first buy them. 

    However, your memory foam pillow will soften up over time. 

    This is why sleep trials with a memory foam product are so important. 

    After a week or two, the cells inside your pillow will start to adapt to your body, soften, and change shape. 

  • Does memory foam make you hot?

    Memory foam retains heat more than other types of materials used in pillows.

    This can be a problem for some people, particularly if you are a hot sleeper.

    However, high-quality memory foam is usually made with an open-cell structure [4], making them more breathable. 

  • Do I have to use a memory foam pillow with a memory foam mattress?

    Memory foam pillows usually work the best when paired with a memory foam mattress.

    However, using a memory foam mattress with a memory pillow is not essential.

    Just like your pillow, you should consider your sleeping position when choosing a mattress. 

    To decide if a memory foam mattress is for you, you could always try using a memory foam topper first. 

    Our mattress buying guide can help you decide on the best mattress for your sleep.

  • Where can I buy a memory foam pillow?

    Memory foam pillows are available at most bed shops.

    The following brands & retailers sell memory foam pillows:

    • Memory foam pillow Dunelm
    • Memory foam pillow Argos
    • Memory foam pillow Silentnight
    • Memory foam pillow Tempur
    • Memory foam pillow Ikea
    • Memory foam pillow John Lewis
    • Memory foam pillow Tesco
    • Memory foam pillow Amazon

    There will be different guarantees and trials available depending where you buy your memory foam pillow. 

  • References


Holly Matthews

Senior Content Writer

Holly has been a content writer at Sleep Hero UK since 2021. With an MA degree in literature and previous experience working at a leading UK bed retailer, she is committed to using her skills to guide others towards making better sleep choices.

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