Is a Memory Foam Pillow the Healthy Choice?

Posted by Chris Larcombe on

Memory foam pillows are a popular choice among those looking for maximum comfort. However, there are several reasons why memory foam pillows may not be the best choice for your health.

One of the main concerns with memory foam pillows is the presence of chemicals and plastics. Memory foam is made from polyurethane, a type of plastic that is known to release volatile organic compounds (VOCs) into the air. It's said that these chemicals can cause headaches, dizziness, and allergic reactions in some people. Additionally, polyurethane foam is often treated with other chemicals, such as flame retardants, which can also be harmful to your health.


The main appeal of a memory foam pillow is its ability to mould to the shape of a person's head and neck, and then spring back to its original shape after use - maintaining it's shape over time. There is some debate among sleep experts about whether memory foam pillows provide proper support for the spine. Many consumers have reported that memory foam pillows do not provide enough support for the neck which can actually lead to improper spinal alignment. This is particularly bad for anyone suffering from neck pain. It's important to note that every person's spinal alignment needs are different.

It's worth the trouble figuring out which is the best pillow, with the right stiffness, to suit your sleeping position and spinal allignement. The right pillow, one that offers proper support, can be the difference between a poor vs. a good night's sleep. If you are unsure which firmness is best for you, an adjustable pillow is a good option. An adjustable pillow allows you to tune the firmness/softness by adding or removing filling, so you can establish your specific pillow needs, and keep your spine in a healthy and comfortable position whilst resting. The right amount of support can make all the difference.

Kind Face pillows are filled with Cloud Wool, which offers the best support for your neck and spine. And of course, our pillows are fully adjustable. For a softer pillow simply zip open the cushion inner and remove some of the Cloud Wool fill. Or, for a firmer pillow, you can simply stuff it with more Cloud Wool Fill.

Temperature Regulation

Memory foam pillows can trap heat, making it difficult for you to stay cool and comfortable while you sleep. This can lead to restlessness, which can disrupt your sleep cycle and leave you feeling tired and groggy in the morning. Temperature regulation is critical for a quality night's rest.

Wool, on the other hand, is naturally thermoregulating, which means it will keep you cool in the summer and warm in the winter. This is great news, as it will always help regulate your temperature so that you can get quality shut-eye. Wool is also naturally ventilated and allows for sufficient airflow. This helps keep the pillow clean and also contributes to its thermoregulating properties.

Memory foam pillows are not biodegradable, and they do not break down easily. This means that they can contribute to the growing problem of plastic pollution in our environment.

Many people are not aware that memory foam pillows contain plastic and chemicals, and they may not realise the potential health risks associated with using these types of pillows. It's important for consumers to be aware of the materials and chemicals used in the products they purchase, so they can make informed decisions about what is best for their health.

Another important factor to consider is the durability of memory foam pillows. Unlike natural materials such as down or cotton, memory foam pillows do not last as long and may need to be replaced more frequently. This not only adds to the environmental impact, but also increases the cost of maintaining a comfortable sleep environment.

If any of your Kind Face Pillows lose some stiffness over time, they can easily be topped up with Cloud Wool Fill. We use only high-quality materials to ensure our products last for a long time.

Kind Face | NZ Wool Pearls (also known as knops)

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The production process of memory foam pillows is not environmentally friendly. The chemicals used in the production process can be harmful to the workers who handle them and can also cause pollution in the surrounding areas. Additionally, the energy needed to produce memory foam pillows is much higher than that of natural materials, contributing to the carbon footprint of the product.


Another issue with a memory foam pillow, is that it is not always easy to clean. The foam material can trap dust, allergens and other particles, making it difficult to keep the pillow clean and hygienic. This can be particularly problematic for people with allergies or asthma.

In addition, memory foam pillows are not always hypoallergenic. Some people may experience allergic reactions to the chemicals used in the production of memory foam pillows. Others may experience allergic reactions to the dust mites and other allergens that can accumulate in the foam.

Another potential concern with memory foam pillows is that they are not as breathable as natural materials like cotton or wool. This can make it difficult for air to circulate through the pillow, which can lead to overheating and discomfort.

All in all, while memory foam pillows may seem like a comfortable and supportive option, they can actually be detrimental to your health and the environment. It's important to be aware of the materials and chemicals used in the products you purchase, and to consider the long-term implications of your choices. Natural materials like down, cotton, or wool are better options for a healthy and sustainable sleep environment.

In conclusion, memory foam pillows may not be the best choice for your health due to the presence of chemicals and plastics, lack of spinal alignment, heat retention, environmental impact, and lack of awareness among consumers. Consider using pillows made of natural materials such as down, cotton, or wool for better comfort and health.


Wool, of course. Wool is a natural and renewable resource that makes for a healthier and more sustainable option for pillows. It also makes for a super comfortable pillow - fit for any type of sleeper. Wool is actually an excellent material if you're considering both comfort and support, by being both soft and supportive.

Find out Why an NZ Wool Pillow Is the Best Pillow for Side Sleepers. Fear not Back Sleepers and Stomach Sleepers - they are perfect for you too! Wool pillows are generally a ready good all-round pillow for all styles of sleeping.

Wool is naturally hypoallergenic, which means it does not attract dust mites or other allergens, making it a great option for people with allergies or asthma. Wool also has natural moisture-wicking properties, which helps to keep you cool and dry throughout the night, reducing the risk of overheating. And it's even mold resistant.

Wool is also naturally flame-resistant, eliminating the need for chemical flame retardants that are often used in memory foam and synthetic materials.

New Zealand's Pillow - The Cloud Wool Pillow is designed to be completely washable. You can remove the Cloud Wool Fill and wash the pillowcase (which is machine washable), whilst leaving the wool to air out in the sun. Or you can give the Cloud Wool a gentle hand wash with a non-harsh detergent. Please read the care instructions carefully before washing your Cloud Wool Pillow.

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Pro Tip

Buy an extra Cushion Inner and then when you want to wash your Cloud Wool Pillow, simply transfer the Cloud Wool Fill to a clean cushion inner.

Wool is also a sustainable option (healthy for our planet), as it is a renewable resource. Wool is obtained from sheep and can be shorn annually without harm. Wool filling and even wool fiber is produced relatively easily with minimal processing - making it an eco-friendly choice of material. In addition, wool is biodegradable and can decompose naturally, reducing the environmental impact when compared to synthetic materials like memory foam.

Lastly, wool is known for its durability. Woollen pillows can last for many years, meaning that they need to be replaced less frequently, reducing the environmental impact and economic cost.

Did You Know?

New Zealand is known for producing some of the finest wool in the world. Last year alone NZ brought in around $410m in revenue from wool exports and is forecast to bag $440m in 2023. Find more stats here.

In conclusion, wool is a healthier, more sustainable, and more durable option than memory foam. The natural properties of wool, including its hypoallergenic, moisture-wicking, flame-resistant and biodegradable properties, make it a great choice for a comfortable and healthy sleep environment.


Kind Face is committed to helping you sleep well. Rest easy knowing you have 30 days to return any of our Cloud Wool Pillows. If you are, for any reason, unhappy with your Kind Face Cloud Wool Pillow, simply mail us at with your proof of purchase and we'll provide support as promptly as possible. You can read more about our free return Refund Policy here.

There are so many pillows in New Zealand to choose from. Some are imported and made from the cheapest (synthetic) materials and labour in the world. Others are handmade from natural materials, right here in New Zealand. Isn't the obvious choice "New Zealand's Pillow"? It's made from NZ wool, by local workers under fair conditions with locally sourced materials. And it's good for you. Go on, give it a try.

Girl Lying on Bed With Her Head on a Kind Face Cloud Wool Pillow Smiling Covering Her Eyes

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