16th April 2019
Guides & Advice
We all know the importance of sleeping on a mattress which is right for you, and finding a duvet and pillow to suit your needs is equally as important. After all, your mattress’ best companion (after yourself) is your duvet and pillow. Much like mattresses, entering the world of duvets and pillows can seem daunting, so we’ve developed a duvet and pillow guide to help you find your perfect match.
The first thing you need to consider when buying a duvet is whether you have any allergies such as asthma or eczema, if so a synthetic filled duvet is recommended. If not, synthetic and natural fillings are equally suitable. Once you’ve chosen the filling, it’s time to choose the cover, the two key types of fabrics used to cover duvets are polyester microfibre, which is extremely breathable and cotton, which offers luxury and freshness. It will be down to personal preference and budget, but make sure you have a feel of the duvet before you buy it. The final stage is to decide on the warmth you desire your duvet to be, this is completely up to you and will depend on what season you want to use the duvet for.
The higher the tog rating, the warmer the duvet. If you’re looking for a duvet for spring and summer seasons then a 2.5-7 tog will be perfect and 10.5-13.5 tog is ideal for autumn and winter. A practical way of being prepared for all temperatures is with an all-seasons duvet. These duvets typically come with a 9 tog and 4.5 tog duvet which can be used separately or clipped together to create a 13.5 thickness for the winter.
Duvets with natural fillings are light, comfortable and soft. They are highly robust and generally last longer than synthetically filled duvets.
If you go into a shop you will most likely see Duck Feather & Down filled duvets or White Goose Down. A down cluster is much lighter and softer than feather as it doesn’t have a quill and for this reason is dearer than a feather duvet. Down or feather duvets are able to give a higher level of warmth because feathers naturally trap air for insulation. It also means they are less thick than their synthetic equivalents as less fillings are required to achieve the same tog rating.
Synthetic duvets are a sensible choice if you’re allergic to feathers and down, or if your duvet is going to need regular washing as synthetic fillings dry more easily. However the more you wash synthetic duvets, the more the filling will become compressed and loose its ability to trap air, meaning it will not do its job properly!
Synthetic duvets come in the same tog rating as naturally filled duvets. However in order for them to match a natural fillings’ tog they tend to be heavier as more fillings are needed. If you’re on a budget, synthetic duvets would be where to turn.
Usually determining what type of duvet is for you comes down to personal preference, budget and any allergies.
Down and feather pillows are easy to shape, molding round your head and shoulders. Although they tend to have less height than their synthetic counterparts, firmness can be reached with an increase of fillings – more down is usually added to help with the softness of the pillow. However, naturally filled pillows do however need a lot of shaking and fluffing to regain their shape and don’t offer a lot of support. Additionally the feathers can sometimes poke through the cover, making them uncomfortable to sleep on.
Synthetically filled pillows, much like synthetic duvets are good for those with feather allergies, and are easy to care for. They do however have the shortest life span and flatten quickly, often getting lumpy over time. Synthetic pillows are usually a pretty good choice for most people, as they can be purchased in various levels of support.
Memory foam pillows offer good support and pain relief, allowing your head and neck to rest in a natural, tension-free position. However they aren’t suited to those that move around a lot in their sleep or switch positions due to their fixed height. They’re not for everyone and often are a bit pricey.
When buying a pillow, one of the most important things to consider is how you sleep; a pillow too firm or too soft can affect your sleeping posture. You need to consider your body shape and height when buying pillows, as you want to maintain a straight spine as you sleep.
A medium-firm pillow is recommended if you sleep on your back as it will support your neck without affecting the alignment of your spine.
If you sleep on your side a firmer pillow is recommended, this will make sure the spine is aligned and will stop you getting a painful neck. When laying on your side you want the pillow to fill the gap between the side of your face and shoulder, keeping your spine straight.
A soft pillow is for if you sleep on your front as it will give you a comfortable amount of cushioning.