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Is there really a difference between feather and down pillows? Which one should you choose to get a good night’s sleep? Although it really boils down to your personal preference, when you understand the differences between the two, you will make a better choice when you shop for the right pillow to get a good night’s sleep.
Down is the fuzzy insulator underneath the feathers of a duck or goose. Goose down is larger and fluffier than duck, which is why they seem to be preferred. Larger down clusters provide more loft and will last longer. They are very durable, but some people do have allergies to down. Down pillows are also more expensive, but because they will last the longest with proper care they are a good bargain. You will see a fill number associated with down pillows, like 600, 700, or 800. The higher the fill number, the more loft and firmness you will have with the product.
Feather pillows are typically blend of feathers and down. Feathers are heavier and provide more support than down alone. However, they do have quills and will wear down quicker. The quills will poke through and escape the pillow, which is thought to be a sign of good luck. However, as you lose feathers, you lose support. Feather blend pillows are less expensive. Most people grew up with these type of pillows, so it is kind of like sleeping with a comfortable friend.
Once you find a great pillow, you want it to last. The two biggest cons with feather or down pillows are compression and moisture. Compression cannot be avoided, after all you are placing your head on the pillow every night. Down pillows can be re-fluffed in the dryer and by hand, but feather pillows will break down more quickly in the dryer because the quills will break. Even though ducks and geese both live in the water, moisture will quickly destroy your down or feather pillow. If you live in a humid climate, your pillows absorb this moisture over time. Tossing the pillows in the dryer on high heat to fully dry them will help extend their life. Going to bed with wet hair will impact the life of your feather or down pillows. Your pillow may yellow prematurely when you do not dry your hair before bed. Perspiration will also affect your pillow. Most people sweat out about one liter of fluid at night. If you have night sweats, your pillow will definitely age faster from the moisture left on it. You may need to dry it more often and leave it on top of the comforter instead of tightly making your bed. Moisturizing creams and oil from your skin will also cause yellowing on your down and feather pillow. However, this can be minimized with pillow covers and cases that protect the pillow
Both feather and down pillows are light and conserve body heat. They are also cooler when the air is warmer, so they are perfect for all seasons. When you are ready to replace your pillow, check out a down or feather pillow for the perfect support. Know how to care for your pillow, and it will provide many nights of restful sleep.