The 13 Best Pregnancy Pillows, According to Pregnant Moms
Does this sound like a familiar scene? You’re exhausted and can’t wait to crawl into bed, but when you do, your ever-growing bump is right there, like a barrier between you and a good night’s sleep. While you might have dismissed a pregnancy pillow as an unnecessary purchase (after all, you have plenty of pillows already!), a great maternity pillow is actually engineered to ease the discomfort of pregnancy and cradle you off to dreamland. “It’s recommended that pregnant people sleep on their sides (left side is optimal). But it can be very hard to do this! The pregnancy pillow helps support different parts of the body to make sleep more comfortable,” explains Sara Twogood, MD, a board-certified ob-gyn in Los Angeles and co-founder of Female Health Education. Most styles support your belly, of course, but others target hip or back pain, because let’s face it: Carrying a baby for nine+ months takes a toll on more than just your midsection.
So how can you find the right one for you? Keep reading for a list of the best pregnancy pillows on the market right now, including this year’s Best of The Bump winner, as well as an expert-backed guide to the various types of pregnancy pillows and how to use them.
To figure out which are truly the best pregnancy pillows out there, we enlisted pregnant parents-to-be to thoroughly test the leading options on the market. We carefully matched pillows to pregnant testers who were struggling with their sleep, experiencing back or hip pain and slept in a range of different positions. They cuddled up and slept with them, they washed them and found a place to store them—and based on their reviews of product quality, effectiveness, supportiveness, ease of use, ease of cleaning and value, as well as our own extensive research, we’ve rounded up the pregnancy pillows that are best suited to your particular needs. Because growing a human is tiring work, and you seriously need some sleep.
Pregnancy Pillows Comparison Chart
|Overall best pregnancy pillow||Best pregnancy wedge pillow||Best U-shape pregnancy pillow||Best C-shape pregnancy pillow||Best pregnancy pillow for stomach sleepers||Best pregnancy pillow for side sleepers||Best pregnancy pillow for back pain||Best pregnancy pillow for hip pain||Best organic pregnancy pillow||Best memory foam pregnancy pillow||Best multipurpose pregnancy pillow||Best budget-friendly pregnancy pillow|
Momcozy Huggable Maternity Body Pillow
Boppy Pregnancy Support Wedge
Leachco Back ‘N Belly Chic Supreme
Leachco Snoogle Total Body Pillow
Newton Baby Pregnancy Pillow
Belly Bandit SOS Side Sleeper Pregnancy Wedge Pillow
Sleepybelly Pregnancy Pillow
Coop Original Maternity Pillow
Yana 360° Body Pillow
Coop Original Body Pillow
Frida Mom Adjustable Keep-Cool Pregnancy Pillow
Pharmedoc Pregnancy C-Shape Full Body Pillow
|Dimensions||57" (L) x 27.6" (W) x 9” (H)||14" (L) x 11.25" (W) x 3.75" (H)||55" (L) x 33" (W) x 8.5" (H)||58.75" (L) x 25.5" (W) x 7.75" (H)||55" (L) x 31" (W) x 10" (H)||N/A||36.6" (L) x 12.6" (W)||60" (L) x 9" (diameter)||55" (L) x 28.5" (W)||54” (L) x 20” (W) x 7” (H)||54” (L) x 9” (W) x 9” (H)||57” (L) x 30” (W) x 7” (H)|
|Fill||Memory foam||Polyester foam||Polyester||Polyester fiber||Memory foam and fiber cluster||Polyurethane||Latex||Memory foam and microfiber||Natural latex or cool gel||Memory foam||Microbead||Polyester|
|Weight||7.3 lbs.||6.2 oz.||8.3 lbs.||5 lbs.||8.5 lbs.||N/A||N/A||7.3 lbs.||N/A||N/A||3 lbs.||7 lbs.|
|Buy NowRead Full Review||Buy NowRead Full Review||Buy NowRead Full Review||Buy NowRead Full Review||Buy NowRead Full Review||Buy NowRead Full Review||Buy NowRead Full Review||Buy NowRead Full Review||Buy NowRead Full Review||Buy NowRead Full Review||Buy NowRead Full Review||Buy NowRead Full Review|
For more than 10 years, The Bump has been recognizing the absolute best baby and pregnancy products on the market through our awards series. Curious to see which pregnancy pillow was named the Best of The Bump award winner this year? Keep scrolling for the overall top pick, plus a list of carefully vetted maternity pillows that are particularly good for specific needs, whether you’re hunting for a certain pillow type or are looking to ease a particular ache or pain.
The Momcozy Huggable Maternity Body Pillow earned top scores across all categories—from support to effectiveness to overall quality—making it our overall Best of The Bump 2023 winner. (Head here to see all of this year’s Best of The Bump winners.) This full-body, U-shaped pregnancy pillow keeps mamas-to-be supported from all angles, thanks to its high-tension memory foam filling that won’t sag or lose its shape. “The quality of the filling feels like it will last a long time,” our product tester, 25 weeks pregnant, remarked. Plus, the U-shape design provides superior comfort for the entire body, including your growing belly, aching back, sore hips and legs. Our product tester found this pregnancy pillow to be so supportive, she gave it a perfect 5 out of 5 score in the category. “I love that it wraps around so it helps my back, knees and stomach,” she shared.
Another favorite feature of the Momcozy pregnancy pillow is its premium cooling cover, which dissipates heat and prevents expectant mamas from getting overheated in the pillow’s cocoon. The cover is also easily removed (thanks to double-enclosure zippers), cleaned and put back on—making maintenance and care one less thing pregnant mamas have to worry about. Plus, “it didn’t have any fading or shrinking after being washed,” our product tester reported.
But perhaps the best thing about the Momcozy maternity pillow is that people (including our product tester) enjoy better quality sleep when using it. (And what mother-to-be doesn’t need more rest?) The balance of comfort and support, the cooling fabric and the high-quality memory foam all work together to improve blood circulation and relieve body discomfort—resulting in a deep, restorative slumber, no matter what position you sleep in. “It improved my sleep a lot,” our product tester shared. The Momcozy pillow can also be used to help you find a comfortable position while lounging, sitting upright or even nursing after baby comes—making this a winner all around. It’s no wonder it earned our top pick for this year’s Best of The Bump Awards, or why 11% of the women we surveyed opted for Momcozy pregnancy pillows!
Dimensions: 57" (L) x 27.6" (W) x 9” (H) | Fabric: Polyester/nylon | Fill: Memory foam | Cleaning: Cover is machine-washable
“I even bought one to give to a pregnant friend already because I love mine that much! It makes it so much easier to sleep and I haven’t been waking up in the middle of the night anymore to toss and turn.”
- Contoured shape supports head, neck, back, hips and tummy
- Affordable option
- Some say the pillow loses its shape overtime
A pregnancy wedge pillow is a great pick for those looking for a more compact or portable option. Our favorite is the Pregnancy Support Wedge from Boppy, a brand that 23% of the women we surveyed used while pregnant. At just 14 by 11 inches, this pregnancy wedge pillow can be moved easily around your house—whether you’re sitting at work, lying in bed or traveling—so you can enjoy some extra support and comfort whenever you need it. In fact, our product tester reported that this pillow is “small enough to fit anywhere” and gave it a 5 out of 5 for ease of use.
This wedge pregnancy pillow from Boppy isn’t just easily transportable, it’s also one of the most adaptable pillows. The firm foam gives support wherever an expectant mama might need it, whether that’s behind an aching back, between the knees for hip alignment or underneath the belly, and can even be used postpartum for lower back support while nursing. The Boppy pillow’s angled design promotes better posture, supports the pelvic floor and releases belly and back tension, making it a versatile option for uses other than sleep. “It’s nice to use for the back when sitting up on the couch or in bed,” our product tester said.
This pregnancy pillow isn’t just portable and versatile, though—it’s also one of the most affordable options available, at just $20. And while it may be low in price, it isn’t low in quality, thanks to its high-quality foam insert and soft, easy-to-clean cover. As our tester said, “It’s very easy to take off and throw in the washer, and it’s not too tight to put back on.” A win-win for mamas-to-be!
Dimensions: 14" (L) x 11.25" (W) x 3.75" (H) | Fabric: 95% cotton/5% spandex | Fill: Polyester foam | Cleaning: Cover is machine-washable; spot clean foam cushion
“It works well for the back when sitting down. It’s firm and seems like it will last.”
- Ultra-portable; ideal for travel and storage
- Can be used for sleeping, sitting or nursing
- Extra firm
- Have to move it to change sleeping positions
You’ll feel support and comfort from all sides with the Leachco Back 'N Belly pillow. The U-shaped pregnancy pillow offers equal support for your back and belly, and helps align your hips to reduce back strain. In fact, our pregnant product tester rated this pick a 5 out of 5 for its levels of support and effectiveness. “I feel instant relief when using the pillow,” she said. “It helps support all the right places.” The pillow has inner contours designed to hug your natural curves, with a supportive wedge for your neck, shoulders and baby bump. That means you won’t have to reposition your pillow throughout the night—since it surrounds you, it’ll be there to offer support with every toss and turn. All of that’s to say, we’re not at all surprised the brand was favored by 10% of the pregnant women we surveyed!
This high-quality sateen cotton pillow is full, fluffy and super comfortable (“I even tried to use it on my couch because of how much I love the material,” our product tester raved). It does take up a good amount of space in bed, so your partner may have to scooch over a bit—but worth it for a good night’s sleep, right? Like many of the best pregnancy pillows, this option has a removable cover that’s machine-washable, and when put to the test, there was zero shrinkage or fading.
This is one of the more expensive pregnancy pillows on our list—but if you have the budget, our tester says it’s worth the splurge: “All I can say is, you’re getting what you pay for.” After using this pillow, she was able to fall asleep more quickly and slept better at night—and that’s exactly what you want in a good maternity pillow.
Dimensions: 55" (L) x 33" (W) x 8.5" (H) | Fabric: Sateen cotton | Fill: Polyester | Cleaning: Cover is machine-washable
“I would 100 percent recommend this pregnancy pillow. The pillow overall has changed my sleeping, and helped so much with relieving pain. I wish I had this during my first pregnancy!”
- Ultra-supportive for back and hip pain
- High-quality, fluffy pillow with 300-thread-count cotton cover
- Takes up a lot of space
Leachco refers to the Snoogle Total Body Pillow as the “mother of all pregnancy pillows,” but we think a better description would be the Goldilocks of all pregnancy pillows. Designed by a mother and registered nurse, this C-shaped pregnancy pillow manages to be not too large but not too small, not too firm but not too soft and not too heavy but not too flimsy.
One of the areas where the Leachco Snoogle has managed to find the perfect balance is in size. It supports all the contours of a pregnant woman’s body without being too large or unwieldy to use—allowing for a more restful and comfortable night’s sleep for both mama and partner. “The pillow is thin enough not to take up too much room in bed, but large enough to be comfortable during late pregnancy when a woman needs more support,” our product tester shared. The Leachco Snoogle’s C-shape can be used in a variety of positions depending on what your comfort needs are. Our product tester stated that the “pillow was easy to manipulate,” thanks to a Leachco guide that details six different configurations and how they help.
The Leachco Snoogle also has a removable outer cover that comes in five different fabric options (300-thread-count cotton, organic cotton, plush polyester, cotton jersey or a polyester-cotton blend), providing something for everyone’s style. But whichever fabric you choose, expect top quality that won’t shrink or fade with washing. (“The pillow feels good to the touch,” our product tester gushed.) To summarize? This is an all-around solid pregnancy pillow that does things just right.
Dimensions: 58.75" (L) x 25.5" (W) x 7.75" (H) | Fabric (outer cover): Choice of cotton, polyester or cotton/polyester | Fabric (inner liner): 65% polyester/35% cotton | Fill: Polyester fiber | Cleaning: Cover is machine-washable; spot clean and fluff pillow
“I noticed a significant difference in my ability to balance while side sleeping, which can be difficult as your belly grows during pregnancy.”
- Large enough to provide all-over support
- Comes in five high-quality fabric options
- Guide details multiple positions and uses
- Not as supportive for back pain
It can be difficult for those who normally favor stomach sleep to get comfortable once they reach the second trimester and have to sleep on their side. Enter the Newton Baby Pregnancy Pillow, which is our favorite option for stomach sleepers because its convertible U-shape design not only provides support from all sides, but it also prevents any attempts at rolling onto your stomach mid-slumber. This pregnancy pillow also comes with a detachable arm, which allows it to transform into either a J- or C-shaped configuration based on whatever arrangement you find most comfortable at that time (which can change by the week as your pregnancy progresses!).
Whatever shape you choose, you’ll find yourself with tons of support, thanks to the pillow’s unique filling, a blend of memory foam and fiber cluster. In fact, our product tester raved about this pregnancy pillow’s support and comfort, giving it top scores in the category. “Support I’ll give it a 10/10,” she shared (high praise on a rating scale that only goes up to 5!). “This pillow gives you head, shoulder, back and front support all at the same time.” Our product tester also called the Newton pillow “very comfy” and reported that she “slept well” with it—which is no easy feat when you’re 36 weeks pregnant, as she is!
Other features to love include the breathable and organic cotton cover, the 85 ounces of CertiPUR-US-certified foam filling and the neutral white design that keeps it from being an eyesore in the bedroom. Even if you’re not a stomach sleeper, this pregnancy pillow is an all-around winning pick.
Dimensions: 55" (L) x 31" (W) x 10" (H) | Fabric: Organic cotton | Fill: Memory foam and fiber cluster | Cleaning: Machine-wash cover on cold and tumble dry on low; spot clean pillow insert
“I slept well with it and it gave me the support I needed during these last weeks of pregnancy. It’s comfortable, very fitted for a pregnant body and can be used in many ways.”
- A detachable arm allows for multiple configurations
- Memory foam and fiber cluster blend provides ample support
- Takes up a lot of space
Whether you’re a natural side sleeper or are trying desperately to become one, The Belly Bandit SOS Side Sleeper Pregnancy Wedge Pillow was designed by ob-gyns to provide expectant mamas with the most restful—and safest—slumber while lying on your side. Its unique three-piece design features a wedge to support your growing belly and prevent any strain on your joints, a foam triangle to support your back and prevent you from rolling over and a Velcro strap to adjust and secure the pieces for a perfect fit (“which helped [with] support tremendously,” our product tester gushed). Not only do these three pieces work together to keep you comfortable while you sleep on your side, but they also help to promote optimal blood flow and the supply of oxygen to the baby throughout the night.
Besides creating a safe and supportive sleep environment, this pregnancy pillow takes up little space in the bed, and thanks to a convenient and included travel case, it’s easy to both store and transport. It also earned top scores from our product tester for ease of use, support, quality and value, making it a winner for side sleep. “This is a simple but effective product. It’s just good at what it does,” our product tester shared. “This is definitely something to have around during your pregnancy.”
Dimensions: Not listed | Fabric: 62% polyester, 33% rayon/5% spandex | Fill: Polyurethane | Cleaning: Remove cover and hand-wash cold
“It’s easy to adjust and easy to store away. It’s easy to use. It’s easy to clean. This is definitely something I could see being on every pregnant woman’s must-have list!”
- Developed by an ob-gyn
- Fully adjustable
- Easy to store and comes with a travel case
- Can’t change position while sleeping
- Cover needs to be hand-washed
Back sleeping is not recommended in your second or third trimesters, due to the weight of your uterus pressing on key blood vessels. According to the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists (ACOG), “lying on your back may compress a major blood vessel that takes blood to your uterus, making you feel dizzy and possibly reducing blood flow to your fetus.” One effective way to stay on your side as you sleep is a full-body pillow, ACOG suggests—and one of our favorites is the Boppy Full Body Side Sleeper Pillow.
Our product tester praised this pregnancy pillow—which features a full-body pillow connected to a smaller side pillow—for its ability to keep her comfortably on her side throughout the night. “I tend to roll over onto my back while sleeping without a pregnancy pillow, which isn't good for me or the baby. This kept me comfortable and locked into a position,” she said. “Overall, [it] adds a lot of comfort to sleeping, which can be hard to come by in your third trimester especially!”
Our product tester also loved this pregnancy pillow’s quality, calling out its soft fabric, its comfortable plush filling and how easy it was to clean. Unlike most maternity pillows, which require the insert to be spot-cleaned by hand, the Boppy side sleeper’s cover and pillow inserts are both machine-washable—and retain their shape and softness after cleaning. (It “washed beautifully,” according to our product tester.) Whether you’re a back sleeper or not, this pregnancy pillow is one to love.
Dimensions: 54" (L) x 30" (W) x 7" (H) | Fabric (body pillow cover): Rayon | **Fabric (small pillow cover): 95% cotton/5% spandex | *Fill:* Polyester fiber | Cleaning: Machine-washable
“I'd even use this not pregnant! I really liked how there are multiple ways to utilize this pillow.”
- Provides back and belly support
- Offers four different sleeping positions
- Pillow covers and pillows are both machine-washable
- Have to readjust to when moving from side to side
Back pain is a common complaint during pregnancy—but there’s a pregnancy pillow for that. Specifically, the Sleepybelly Pregnancy Pillow and its unique three-piece design is a winner when it comes to relieving back, hip and pelvic girdle pain.
The Sleepybelly Pregnancy Pillow comes with a long pillow for back support that connects to a smaller side wedge that goes under the belly. A second side wedge can either be used in between your knees for help with alignment, or in place of the long pillow behind your back (a back wedge can be ideal for those who like to turn from side to side while sleeping). But the long pillow was a favorite of our product tester, who found it supportive and appreciated that it helped alleviate her back pain. The beauty of this pregnancy pillow is that it can be customized to help with whatever aches and pains you might be experiencing—which, in pregnancy, can be different each day!
Dimensions (back pillow): 36.6" (L) x 12.6" (W) | Dimensions (side wedge): 13.8” (L) x 8.7” (W) | Dimensions (second side wedge): 13.8” (L) x 8.7” (W) | Fabric: Bamboo/polyester | Fill: Latex | Cleaning: Covers are machine-washable
“I love the design of this! Way better than a normal pregnancy pillow and it definitely does help with back pain more than other brands that I’ve tried.”
- Separate pieces create custom configurations and are easy to store
- Anti-bacterial fabric
- Can sleep with your own pillow
- Takes up a lot of space
- Filling can bunch a bit
The Coop Original Maternity Pillow is a whopping five feet long, and its flexible shape allows you to bend and mold it to wherever you might need some extra cushioning or support. While the larger size might take up a good amount of space in your bed, it’s one of the most helpful pregnancy pillows when it comes to hip pain, as it allows you to properly support and align your head and shoulders, belly, knees, hips and spine all at the same time.
This pregnancy pillow from Coop was so helpful at relieving discomfort and aiding in sleep that our product tester (who reported suffering from lower back and hip pain) said she’ll continue using it even when her pregnancy is over. “I like that I can tuck part of it under my knees when in a sitting or reclined position to offer leg support, which helps keep me upright when I have bad reflux. Or it’s great to put between my knees or even my full legs when lying on my side,” she reported. “I’m considering keeping it out long after having my baby.”
Besides being oversized, the Coop Original Maternity Pillow’s signature feature is its fill: The cross-cut memory foam and microfiber fill can be adjusted based on how much support or firmness you’re seeking—and it’s also hypoallergenic. It strikes the perfect balance of being firm without being too hard, making it ideal for those sensitive, aching pregnant joints.
Dimensions: 60" (L) x 9" (diameter) | Fabric: 60% polyester/40% bamboo-derived viscose rayon | Fill: Memory foam and microfiber | Cleaning: Both cover and pillow are machine-washable
“I love how much more support this pillow offered as compared to my previous pregnancy pillow—it’s thicker. I was worried at first when I saw it wasn’t C-shaped like many pregnancy pillows are but quickly found it’s easy to shape into whatever form you need.”
- Can be molded into any position
- Doubles as a nursing pillow
- GREENGUARD Gold- and CertiPUR-US-certified
- Takes up a lot of space
There is lots to love about the Yana 360° Body Pillow—and we’re not just talking about its ample size. This luxury pillow surrounds you on all sides (literally!) with customized comfort, whether you select the natural latex fill or the cooling gel. (Both can be adjusted to your preferred fullness.) Plus, the contoured, U-shape design leaves no area of your body unsupported, providing relief and comfort wherever you might need it most. “It’s very supportive,” our product tester said. “The knee bump is my favorite part, where I can wrap my legs and take pressure off my body.”
The one downside of this organic pregnancy pillow is its price tag, which rings in at nearly $200. But the quality of materials used—including organic cotton, bamboo velour and OEKO-TEX certified fill—are top-notch (our product tester scored the quality 5 out of 5) and can help to justify the cost. “The pillow is very expensive; however, it’s high quality, and during pregnancy, sleep is priceless,” our product tester said. “If a pillow helps to get a better night’s sleep, it’s definitely worth the money.” A better night’s sleep and high-quality, organic materials? That sounds like a win-win in the pregnancy pillow department to us.
Dimensions: 55" (L) x 28.5" (W) | Fabric: Organic cotton/bamboo velour | Fill: Natural latex or cool gel | Cleaning: Wash in warm water with gentle detergent
“The pillow definitely is effective in helping me have a comfortable sleep. I can flip whichever way I want and get in a comfortable, safe position for baby and me!”
- OEKO-TEX Standard 100-certified
- Two fill options are available
- Can be tied in a knot for storage purposes
- Heavy to move
Coop pillows have a cult following for their fill, and it’s easy to see why. Their pillows are stuffed with a proprietary blend of cross-cut memory foam and microfiber, resulting in a full body pillow that holds its shape night after night (and can be customized to the fullness of your liking). That’s why even though this full body pillow isn’t technically a maternity pillow, it’s still a top pick for expectant mamas (especially those that love the support of memory foam).
The Coop Original Body Pillow can be used along your back to provide support and prevent rolling, or hugged between your knees and under the belly for joint support and comfort. Whatever position you prefer, expect to receive a more restful, comfortable sleep as a result. (Our product tester confirmed that it “helped her sleep better,” awarding it a full 5 out of 5 for support.) And since the Coop body pillow is GREENGUARD Gold and CertiPUR-US certified, you’ll also be able to sleep better at night knowing that this Coop body pillow is free of any harmful chemicals and meets top product safety standards.
Dimensions: 54” (L) x 20” (W) x 7” (H) | Fabric: 60% polyester/40% bamboo-derived viscose rayon | Fill: Memory foam | Cleaning: Both cover and pillow are machine-washable
“It works amazing and is so comfy.”
- Can be used during pregnancy, postpartum and beyond
- GREENGUARD Gold and CertiPUR-US certified
- Cannot be bent into a C- or J-shape
Pregnancy pillows can be an investment, so selecting one that has multiple forms or uses can help you get a better bang for your buck. One of our favorite multipurpose pregnancy pillows is from the folks over at Frida, a company that has helped address multiple voids in the worlds of pregnancy and postpartum care—and which 7% of the women we surveyed bought pregnancy pillows from. The Frida Mom Adjustable Keep-Cool Pregnancy Pillow is just one of their many products that help to make expectant and postpartum mamas more comfortable, thanks to its twistable design that makes four different shapes (I, C, L or U).
Not only can this pregnancy pillow take many forms and be used in multiple settings, it also has a microbead filling that allows heat to pass through and creates a cooling effect—which means no more overheating while sleeping. “Unlike other pillows [I’ve used], the breathable material helped me with any heat issues I experienced,” our product tester noted. The beaded filling also makes the pillow more lightweight than other competitors of similar size, making it easier to transport and store.
Our product tester rated the Frida Mom pillow 5 out of 5 for effectiveness and plans to use it postpartum as well. Bottom line, Frida proves time and time again that they know what moms need—and their pregnancy pillow is no exception.
Dimensions: 54” (L) x 9” (W) x 9” (H) | Fabric: 46% Nylon/46% Polyester/7% Spandex blend | Fill: Microbead | Cleaning: Cover is machine-washable
“I would recommend this product to any expectant mom or postpartum mom for better quality of sleep.”
- Can be bent into several configurations
- Microbead filling has a cooling effect
- Filling can lose its density over time
Shopping for pregnancy pillows can cause sticker shock, particularly when you think it’s something you’ll only use for a few months. But the Pharmedoc Pregnancy C-Shape Full Body Pillow takes the sting out of the purchase in more ways than one: The supportive C-shape design provides comfort, pain relief and sleep aid for pregnancy and beyond—and does so at a significantly lower price than many of its competitors. “The price is perfect,” our product tester raved. “It isn’t crazy expensive and it does the job just right.” In fact, 14% of the women we surveyed said they used Pharmedoc pregnancy pillows.
Even better, the low price tag doesn’t come at the cost of quality—which our product tester described as “amazing” and rated a 5 out of 5. The polyester fill holds its shape, doesn’t sag after repeated use and provides a comfortable cushion for any areas that may be particularly sore. For our product tester, that was her back—and the Pharmedoc pregnancy pillow brought significant relief. “It has helped my back so much,” she gushed. Another area where this pillow’s quality shines is the removable cover, which is made of a super-soft jersey cotton and is easy to wash and care for. To sum it up, those seeking a budget-friendly option should look no further—the Pharmedoc pregnancy pillow is the one.
Dimensions: 57” (L) x 30” (W) x 7” (H) | Fabric: Jersey cotton | Fill: Polyester | Cleaning: Cover is machine-washable
“It has eased my pain where I’ve had it. It has also helped me fall asleep a lot quicker and longer at night…I would recommend this pillow to other moms-to-be.”
- Provides head, neck, belly, back and leg support
- Around half the price of similar pillows
- Takes up a lot of space
To help you find the best pregnancy pillows on the market today, The Bump editors did extensive research to identify the most popular, most innovative and all-around top-notch products out there, combing through user reviews, leveraging our familiarity with leading pregnancy brands and relying on our own experiences as new and expectant parents. And then we put those pillows to the test. We enlisted the help of pregnant parents-to-be (just like you!) who slept with these pillows for several nights, and then carefully evaluated each for ease of use, supportiveness, effectiveness, ease of cleaning, style, quality and value for the money.
Pairing this rigorous testing protocol with our own expertise and insights, we bestowed the prestigious Best of The Bump award to the overall best pregnancy pillow. And then we went one step further, using the testing results to identify other standout options that are particularly good for your specific needs, whether you’re dealing with back pain, on the hunt for an organic option or need help sticking to your side instead of your usual sleep position. All this to ensure that you find a quality product with plenty of bang for your buck that’ll prove a good fit for you and your lifestyle.
Interested in learning more about our editorial process? Read about how our team develops and reviews all articles here.
Pregnancy pillows are important for both comfort and safety—but which type should you choose? There is no one-size-fits-all approach when it comes to maternity pillows; “it really depends on the various needs and concerns about sleep and rest,” states Twogood. To simplify your search, we’ve listed the main types of pregnancy pillows and detailed the pros and cons of each below.
U-shaped pregnancy pillow
This pregnancy pillow is the size of your body and, as the name implies, is shaped like a contoured U (with you nestled in the center). “U-shaped pillows are best for full body support,” explains Gil Weiss, MD, an ob-gyn based in Chicago. This style of pillow does it all, supporting your head, neck, back, hips, legs and bump.
Depending on your sleep position, you can use it to prop yourself up if you’re a back-sleeper or sandwich your front and back once you begin sleeping on your side in the second trimester, with the edge of the pregnancy pillow tucked between your legs. You can slip your arm underneath the pillow and rest your head right on top. Keep in mind that this type of pregnancy pillow will take up a good amount of space (hopefully your partner won’t mind welcoming it into your bed!).
C-shaped pregnancy pillow
This is another type of large pregnancy body pillow, but it’s shaped like a C instead of a U. In particular, “C-shaped pillows are best at supporting a baby bump,” says Weiss. Some C-shaped pregnancy pillows curve around your entire body to support both your back and bump, while others contour your front only. You can rest your head at the top, prop up your bump (and possibly back) with the side and tuck the bottom of the C between your legs.
I-, J- and L-shaped pregnancy pillows
Though less common, there are also I-, J- and L-shaped pregnancy pillows. J- and L-shaped pillows are essentially the same: While sleeping on your side, they provide support along your body (either front or back) with a section that can either go under your head or between your knees, depending on how it’s turned. An I-shaped pillow serves as more of a body pillow and can provide support along your back or underneath your belly—but not both, which is a benefit of the previously described shapes. I-, J- and L-shaped pillows can serve as a happy medium between the larger-sized C- and U-shaped pregnancy pillows and the much smaller wedge pillows (detailed below), providing full-body support without dominating the bed.
Pregnancy wedge pillow
A wedge is much smaller and less expensive than other pregnancy pillows; it’s designed to support a targeted area—typically your bump or back. To use it, slip the wedge under your belly to relieve the weight of your bump, or tuck it behind you to ensure you don’t roll over flat onto your back overnight. (If you enjoy spooning with your partner but need some support for your bump, this is a great cuddle-friendly pick.)
As you search for the best pregnancy pillow to suit your needs, you’ll want to consider a few key factors:
- Preferred sleep position. Are you normally inclined to be a side sleeper, back sleeper or stomach sleeper? While stomach sleepers have obvious challenges adjusting to pregnancy, back sleepers have different hurdles to overcome, and different pillows are designed to address those challenges.
- Firmness and support. Do you like firm foam or a softer fill? What’s going to feel best against your back or bump? If you’re picky about firmness and density, pay extra attention to find a pregnancy pillow that meets your needs.
- Fabric. As with any sleep accessory (who doesn’t like high-quality bed linen?), it’s important to think about fabric. Cotton or bamboo is soft and naturally breathable, making it a good option for people who run hot. Pillows made with polyester tend to be more affordable. Bear in mind that you’ll be sleeping with this pillow every night for months, so it’s a good idea to opt for one with a removable and machine-washable cover.
- Aches and pains. Spent most of your pregnancy nursing an aching back? Or are sore hips what’s keeping you up at night? Take note of your primary source of discomfort, and seek out a pregnancy pillow designed to help alleviate those specific concerns.
You can start to use a maternity pillow at any time during your pregnancy, although many moms-to-be appreciate the support in the second or third trimester. At this point, your bump will be larger and it becomes important to sleep on your side instead of your back. “I recommend starting to use the pillow around 28 weeks, when the weight of the uterus and baby is heavy enough to possibly compress the major blood vessel” found along your back, says Christian Pope, DO, an ob-gyn at St. Luke’s Hospital in New Bedford, Massachusetts. Too much pressure on the inferior vena cava can inhibit blood flow, causing low blood pressure, nausea and other unpleasant symptoms. “The effects of low blood pressure on baby can also be dangerous if it occurs for prolonged periods of time,” explains Pope. Health concerns aside, the common aches and pains of pregnancy that a maternity pillow strives to alleviate tend to kick in after your first trimester is behind you.
So why else should you make the switch to a pregnancy pillow? While regular pillows serve as a headrest, the best pregnancy pillows are designed to ease various body aches. They’re also super handy for keeping you on your side throughout the night—the recommended sleep position for expectant moms. According to our survey data, 65% of pregnant women we reached out to were using a pregnancy pillow. When we asked why, they gave us the following reasons:
- 68%: To help generally improve my sleep
- 54%: To help me as a side sleeper
- 48%: To help with backache
- 48%: To help with hip pain
- 38%: To help me as a natural stomach sleeper
- 25%: To help me as a back sleeper
- 24%: To help with leg aches
- 13%: To help me sleep as a petite person
- 6%: To help me sleep as a tall person
- 6%: To help me sleep as a plus-size person
Sleeping with a pregnancy pillow will vary depending on the type of pillow you selected, from the all-encompassing U-shaped pillows to the compact wedge designs. Often, the pillow you purchase will have a guide or instructions on how to position the pillow for optimal sleep—but there are also some general guidelines that can help you get comfy with your newest bedmate. “I usually recommend placing a soft pillow under your right hip and buttock to tilt the body to the left a little,” says Pope. Additionally, having the support of a pillow underneath your belly can prevent straining on your back, while cushioning between your knees helps to keep your hips aligned. For those with back pain or to prevent rolling, positioning the pillow along your back might be more beneficial than hugging it in the front.
“Really any way they feel best. There is no one perfect position,” says Twogood. Ultimately, how you sleep with your maternity pillow will be unique to you. “For example, if your hips are hurting, try sleeping with the top leg on top of the pillow (from the inner thigh down to the foot),” she explains. No matter what way you decide to position your pillow, Weiss recommends sleeping on your left side, which promotes “blood flow to the pregnant uterus, decreasing acid reflux and even reducing rates of stillborn.”
But finding the perfect sleeping position with your pregnancy pillow will require some trial and error, and one size doesn’t fit all. Luckily, most of the pregnancy pillows featured here can all be used in various positions—allowing you to tweak until you find your sweet (or, in this case, sleep) spot.
What can I do with a pregnancy pillow afterward?
Once baby has arrived, you may be wondering what to do with your maternity pillow—luckily, there are plenty of ways to continue using it. Twogood suggests using it as an extra couch cushion, a prop on the floor for playtime or a backrest in bed. “A patient of mine’s husband started using it to sleep,” she added. What’s more, Weiss recommends using pillows “to relieve pain after delivery or even to help facilitate a comfortable breastfeeding position.” All in all, these workhorse pillows can be used throughout the fourth trimester and beyond.
Can I use a standard pillow rather than a pregnancy pillow?
“Absolutely,” says Twogood. If you want to test out how a maternity pillow may work for your sleeping habits before committing to one, she suggests trying regular, king-sized pillows first. “A rolled-up blanket can even be used in a pinch,” adds Weiss. The bottom line? If normal pillows work for you, go for it! “But,” Twogood reminds, “there’s definitely a reason pregnancy pillows are popular; they just seem to provide more support and options than a regular pillow.”
About the writer:
Lynsey Eidell has researched and written dozens of product reviews for The Bump, from the best pregnancy belly bands to the best baby bassinets and beyond. She’s also written about entertainment, pop culture, weddings and motherhood for digital publications including PEOPLE, Glamour, Vanity Fair, Teen Vogue, Allure and more. She is a graduate of Villanova University and a native of Fairfield County, Connecticut, where she currently lives with her family. When she’s not busy writing, she is kept equally busy by her three young boys, who are 7, 4 and 3.
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Please note: The Bump and the materials and information it contains are not intended to, and do not constitute, medical or other health advice or diagnosis and should not be used as such. You should always consult with a qualified physician or health professional about your specific circumstances.
Sara Twogood, MD, FACOG, is a board-certified ob-gyn at Cedars Sinai Medical Center in Los Angeles and has more than 15 years of experience in medicine. She’s also the author of Ladypartsblog.com, which covers topics relating to fertility and pregnancy, and the co-founder of Female Health Education, a program established in 2020 that's designed to empower females through health education.
Christian Pope, DO, FACOG, is a board-certified obstetrician and gynecologist and fellow of the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists in private practice at South Coast Health in Massachusetts. He is also a medical staff member at St. Luke’s Hospital of Southcoast Hospitals and at Women and Infants’ Hospital in Providence, Rhode Island. Additionally, he serves as a clinical instructor of obstetrics and gynecology at the Warren Alpert Brown University School of Medicine. A graduate of the Philadelphia College of Osteopathic Medicine, Pope received his obstetrics and gynecology training at the Tufts University School of Medicine, Baystate Medical Center.
Gil Weiss, MD, is an ob-gyn based in Chicago and Northbrook, Illinois. He’s a graduate of the University of Toronto in Canada and attended medical school at the Technion-Israel Institute of Technology in Haifa, Israel. He completed his residency at the University of Illinois at Chicago.
American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists, Ask ACOG: Can I Sleep On My Back When I'm Pregnant?, January 2021
The Bump May 2023 Survey. Editors conducted a survey of 300 new and expectant parents from among The Bump community, and asked whether they used a pregnancy pillow and what type and brand they used.
Learn how we keep our content accurate and up-to-date by reading our medical review and editorial process.
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