How Often Should You Replace Your Pillows? Common Question And Answers Update 04/2024

The importance of a good night’s sleep for one’s physical and mental well-being has been well documented. Optimizing your bedroom atmosphere and bedding might help you get a good night’s rest. Maintaining and, if required, replacing your pillow is an important part of making sure it offers you with the support you need.

The quality and hygiene of our pillows are also important considerations because we rest our heads on them for so many hours at a time. Using the same pillow for a long period of time might cause allergies, rashes, and neck strain. When it comes to pillow care and replacement, we’ll go through the basics.

How Often Should You Replace Your Pillows?

Pillows should be replaced every one to two years, according to most experts. To ensure that you’re utilizing pillows that are supportive, clean, and free of allergens, you should do so. To make sure your pillows last as long as possible, make sure you take good care of them.
How Many Pillows Should You Sleep With? | Casper

Your pillows will usually inform you when it’s time to change them. Getting out of bed in the morning with a hurting neck or struggling to find a comfortable posture may be a sign that your pillow isn’t supporting your neck properly. Pillows should be replaced if they begin to sag or develop lumps, much like a mattress. If your allergies are keeping you up at night, or if you notice that your pillows are becoming yellow, it’s time to shop for new ones.

Pillows made from certain materials last longer than others. A polyester pillow, for example, may only last one year while a latex pillow may last up to three. Quality of materials and density can also play a part in determining whether or not a material is suitable for use in a given application. Investing in a high-quality pillow will save you money in the long run because you won’t have to replace it as frequently.

Keeping your cushion and case clean will extend the life of your pillow. Many pillows may be machine washed and dried, and pillowcases should be cleaned every time you wash your sheets.

Why it’s Important to Replace Pillows

Pillows that are past their prime can cause allergic responses, acne breakouts, and sore muscles. Replacing them periodically may seem like a burden.

Dust mites, fungi, mold, and pet dander can all be found in an old pillow. Those allergens can produce a runny or stuffy nose, itchy skin, and irritated eyes for some people, which might affect their sleep. Investing in a cushion that is antibacterial and breathable can help avoid allergies caused by your pillow.

In addition to drool and other bodily fluids, oils from the face and hair can soak through pillowcases and into your pillows, leaving yellow stains. People with sensitive skin may get breakouts of acne or rashes as a result of these substances clogging their pores. Pillowcases and pillows should be washed on a regular basis using a mild detergent to prevent buildup, and pillows should be replaced on a regular basis to provide a fresh start without irritating skin.

Pillows are designed to provide neck and head support as you sleep, which helps to reduce muscular tension and maintain proper spinal alignment. If your pillow has sagged or flattened over time, you may wake up feeling sore or unrefreshed because it is unable to provide the support you need. A flattened pillow can also cause aching shoulders for those who sleep on their sides. Replace your pillow if it’s no longer providing the support it once did. You can only get so far by fluffing or folding it.

Replacement Reason #1: Pillows Can Get Pretty Dirty

During the course of a night’s sleep, our body oils and dead skin cells accumulate on our pillows and sheets (and not just the pillowcase). The following are some of the problems posed by a frequently soiled pillow:

  • Infectious microorganisms.
  • Dust mites, which cause allergies.
  • An excess of oil and perspiration.

It’s not necessary to replace your pillow because of the dirt that accumulates on it throughout the day. Consider the pillow case when determining how often you should change your pillows. You should wash your pillowcase every one to two weeks (or more if you are a sweaty sleeper), according to the best pillow care technique. Lastly, what about the pillow? Every three months, you should clean that.

The Original Casper Pillow, for example, may be washed in the washing machine. Different materials may necessitate different care for pillows. Spot cleaning a memory foam cushion, for example, is preferable to washing it in the washing machine. If you’re looking for more information on how to wash pillows, check out our guide.
How Often Should You Replace Your Pillows & Why it's Important​

When it comes to pillows, how filthy do they have to be before they need to be replaced?

It all depends on how many pillows you use when you sleep. You may sleep with two pillows, but only one of them touches your head, exposing it to more germs and stains than the other.

If you’ve spotted any of the warning signals listed here, it’s time to start looking for a new one.

  • Stains.
  • Smells.
  • Allergy symptoms have worsened.
  • Acne that recurs on the cheeks.

Finally, if your pillow doesn’t seem new (even after a clean wash), it’s time to replace it.

Replacement Reason #2: Your Pillow Has Lost Its Shape

In time, we notice that our pillows lose their contour. If you sleep with your pillows folded, bent, or squeezed, you’re doing yourself a disservice. You may begin to notice that your beloved pillow doesn’t return to its original shape as quickly as it used to.

If you’re using a low-quality pillow, especially a synthetic one, this issue can arise rapidly. In the case of an old, deformed cushion, these are some of the warning signs:

  • Lumpiness – A good night’s sleep is sabotaged by a bumpy pillow. Your pillow should be replaced if the filling has started to bunch up in new and unexpected ways. A pillow that has lost all its plumpness is a pillow that should be thrown away, not fluffed up.
  • Flatness – Pillows lose their plumpness over time. A stiff neck and back are common side effects of sleeping on a pillow that is too flat. If your pillow looks more like a plywood board than a cloud, it’s time to get a new one (your neck will thank you later).

To summarize, a pillow’s surface should be soft, fluffy, and thick. If your pillow has any lumps, bumps, or lacks support, it’s time to get a new one.

Replacement Reason #3: Your Pillow Just Isn’t Comfy Anymore

To help you go off to sleep, your pillow serves as a source of comfort and support. However long the experts say pillows last, if your pillow isn’t doing what it was intended to, then it’s time to part ways.

A lack of comfort can be caused by a number of different things. Dirt and lumps aren’t the sole causes of a bad night’s sleep, but they’re not the only culprits. Other reasons to get a new cushion are as follows:

  • Changes in our physical appearance — As we age, our physical appearance changes. If your demands have changed because of an accident or a change in your way of life, your old pillow may no longer be enough. It’s common for older adults to require extra neck support in bed, and switching to a new pillow over time can help you achieve this goal.
  • New mattress or bed size: The amount of support you require in a pillow can alter when switching to a new mattress with a harder or softer feel, or a different bed size.

The most important thing to remember is that your comfort is the most important factor. No matter how long you’ve had your present pillow, if it isn’t improving your sleep, it may be time to replace it.

Pillow Care and Replacement Guidelines

Pillows need to be cleaned and cared for regularly if they are to last as long as possible. Buying the right pillow and following the manufacturer’s care instructions can make a big difference in how long it lasts and how easy it is to clean.

Memory Foam.

Using a washing machine or dryer to wash a memory foam pillow is a bad idea. As a result, it’s essential to only wash this cushion when necessary. Every two months, thoroughly hand wash the pillow with a moderate detergent and let it air dry. Every two to three years, it’s a good idea to change your memory foam pillows.


A moderate detergent and air drying is all that is required to clean polyfoam pillows, just as memory foam pillows, which may be spot cleaned and hand washed every two to three months. For polyfoam pillows, the average lifespan is 2 to 3 years.


Dry cleaning is required for some down and feather pillows, while washing them in the machine is acceptable for others. The gentle cycle, warm water, and a mild detergent should be used for washing a down or feather pillow in a machine. To remove all of the detergent, it may be necessary to run the rinse cycle more than once. Pillows can either be air-dried or put in a low-temperature dryer for 20 minutes. Every 3 to 6 months, you should wash and replace these pillows. Folding the pillow in half is a good way to determine whether or not it’s time for a new one.

Alternatives to Polyester and Down

It is possible to machine wash down-alternative and polyester pillows with mild detergent and cold water and dry them using low heat in the dryer. These cushions should be cleaned every 3 to 6 months. One to two years is the average lifespan of down alternative pillows. Pillows made of polyester are notoriously short-lived, lasting about six months to two years before needing to be replaced.


When possible, avoid putting latex pillows in the washing machine. Spot clean stains and hand wash the pillow every two to three months with warm water and a mild detergent. Do not soak or wring out the pillow. Instead, place the pillow on a flat surface and allow it to dry. If you use a latex pillow, you should replace it every two to four years.


Buckwheat pillows can be damaged by moisture, so it’s preferable to cover them with a washable, detachable cover. There are many pillows that allow you to dry out any spills by opening them up, making it easy to clean up any spills that may have occurred. Replace the buckwheat hulls in your pillow when they flatten out, usually every three years, to keep it fresh.


At the very least, wash your pillowcases once a week. Depending on the type of material, the care requirements can vary, therefore check the manufacturer’s label. Pillowcases should be replaced every one to two years.
Original Foam Pillow | Tuft & Needle


What type of pillow lasts the longest?

Pillows made of latex often last far longer than those made of down or bamboo. Because it is created from 100% pure latex serum, Dunlop latex is the most long-lasting sort of latex. In comparison to other pillow kinds, latex pillows maintain their structural integrity for an exceptionally lengthy period of time. If you want a pillow that will last for years and years, look into pillows made with Dunlop latex.

How can you tell a quality pillow?

Checking the material is a good place to start when looking for a nice cushion. Even while both natural latex and down pillows have their merits, the one that lasts the longest is produced from a completely different material. If a warranty is included, you know you’re getting a high-quality cushion. Companies only offer warranties when they have complete faith in their product’s ability to perform as advertised. If you’re looking for a high-quality pillow, search for materials that are long-lasting and backed by a solid warranty.

Is it good to sleep without a pillow?

When you sleep on your stomach, you may find it more comfortable to sleep without a pillow. In general, however, it is not recommended to sleep on one’s stomach because it is an unhealthy position. Since this might lead to neck stiffness, you should avoid sleeping on your back without a pillow. Pillows are essential for a good night’s sleep since they give support for your head and neck. Because of this, while a pillowless night may initially feel more comfortable, it will lead to long-term discomfort.

Is it better to have 1 or 2 pillows?

One pillow is all you need to sleep well, despite your inclination to pile on the pillows. You need a pillow that is thick and sturdy enough to keep your neck in a healthy position and prevent pain. There are a number of other types of sleeping pillows that can be used in addition to the traditional head pillow to help people sleep in an optimal position. Even for those who like to sleep on their side, body and knee pillows positioned between the legs can prevent your upper leg from putting stress on your back and hips. A wedge pillow can help back sleepers maintain an inclination while they sleep, allowing them to breathe more easily and perhaps stop snoring.

Why do old pillows turn yellow?

The most prevalent cause of yellow pillows is a buildup of sweat on the surface. Sweat can leak through your pillowcase on a regular basis, and when it dries, it leaves a yellow stain. It is possible for your pillow to turn yellow even if you use a pillow cover in between the pillow and the pillowcase. If your pillows have yellow stains, it’s time to get new ones.


Replacing pillows is a necessary but dreaded chore for many of us. That, however, does not mean it should be avoided. When purchasing a new pillow, take the time to look for a high-quality, long-lasting option. Having a pillow that is both comfy and supportive is a great accomplishment, but it’s imperative that you maintain it. Keep a pillowcase on your pillows at all times, and wash them every few months. If you follow these suggestions, you may be able to extend the life of your pillow, but keep in mind that an old, lumpy pillow is no longer beneficial to you or your sleep. For better sleep, hygiene, and a more restful night’s sleep, swap out your pillows as needed!

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