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Longing for sweet, sweet rest? About halfway into your pregnancy, sleeping may not be as comfortable as you remember in the past. Your body is starting to seriously shift and change, which can mean new, uncomfortable sleeping positions and associated aches and pains.

If you’ve reached this stage in your pregnancy, allow us to introduce you to your new best friend: a pregnancy pillow.

With the help of a pregnancy pillow, sleeping with a baby bump can actually be — dare we say — comfortable. The first step, though, is choosing the best pregnancy pillow for your needs and budget.

As your body changes and grows during pregnancy, you may find body aches keeping you awake. You’ll also be advised to sleep on your side, which may not be your natural sleeping position. All of this can make rest hard to achieve when you need it most.

Pregnancy pillows are designed to support you and your body so you can sleep in safe positions while pregnant.

When shopping for a pregnancy pillow, you may come across “C” and “U” shaped versions. A U-shaped version will offer support for both your back and front, but it takes up more bed space.

Alternatively, a C-shaped pillow will take up a little less space, but it fails to offer the full-body support you may be craving.

Either way, both are large, full-body pillows that will definitely be a presence in your bed — if you share a bed with a partner, it’s important to have them on board with this new addition!

Pregnancy pillows also come as wedges, straight line body pillows, and various inflatable shapes. All of these options can be used to help prop your body into certain positions and ease specific pressure points.

Specially designed pillows are so coveted by pregnant women because as your belly grows, there are fewer ideal positions to sleep in.

Although your OB-GYN may recommend sleeping on your left side for optimal blood flow to your heart, a 2019 review of studies actually found that either left or right side is A-OK.

However, sleeping on your back is not recommended as it causes your abdomen to rest on your intestines and some major blood vessels. Pressure from the abdomen can cause a variety of health problems, the most serious of which is a lack of blood flow to mom and baby.

As you move further along in your pregnancy, your growing bump may begin to put increased pressure on your back, hips, and knees. Pregnancy body pillows can be a great option if you’re looking for extra support.

These long pillows are designed to fit any height and can provide additional relief for your changing body, ideally lessening aches, pains, and restless nights, especially during the second and third trimesters.

Since only a fellow pregnant woman can truly judge if a pregnancy pillow is comfortable, we’ve made sure to consider what mamas-to-be are saying in reviews. We’ve also taken into account price, quality of fabrics, and special features as we know those matter, too.

Price guide:

  • $ = under $30
  • $$ = $30–$50
  • $$$ = over $50

Most versatile pregnancy pillow

Boppy Multi-Use Total Body Pillow

Price: $$

If you’re looking for versatility, the Total Body pillow from Boppy covers a lot of bases. It can support you in multiple different positions, is contoured to fit your changing body throughout the entire pregnancy/postpartum period, and is completely machine washable (not just the cover!).

One reviewer says, “It bends, folds, curves, and hugs you back. It is extremely versatile, but not so big your partner has to sleep on the sofa. I use it every night to prop my head up while I read in bed or put it under my legs so I can sit more comfortably.”

Pros

  • Extremely versatile
  • Machine washable
  • Supports multiple sleeping positions

Cons

  • Some reviewers notes that it has a synthetic smell
  • Not enough belly support for some users

Best U-shaped pregnancy pillow

Queen Rose U-Shaped Pregnancy Pillow

Price: $$

When it comes to U-shaped pillows, the Queen Rose is at the top of its class. This pillow’s extra length allows it to be contoured in a number of ways, including bending it into a double-C shape for bonus leg support or wrapping it around yourself as a nursing pillow once your baby arrives.

That being said, it is definitely on the large side — in fact, unless you want to kick your partner to a couch, this is best used with a king-size bed. While the standard size is 55 inches long, it also comes in 60- and 65-inch sizes if you just can’t get enough cush.

Reviewers seem to think it’s worth the space, though. One mama says, “This pillow has to have been made by elves from Narnia, and it has to have been filled with downy fluff and the fibers of unicorn hide.” Wow.

Pros

  • can be contoured for bonus support
  • can be used as a nursing pillow
  • soft material

Cons

  • large size
  • some reviewers found the filling to be lumpy

Best C-shaped pregnancy pillow

PharMeDoc Full Body C-Shaped Pillow

Price: $$

This C-shaped pregnancy pillow from PharMeDoc is long enough to offer both upper and lower body support in one pillow, and versatile enough to wrap around in a seated position for breastfeeding or TV watching. What really makes it rise to the top of the pregnancy pillow list though is all the glowing reviews from pregnant moms!

One mom says, “Love it! My husband and I have changed our time measurement to BP (Before Pillow) and AP (After Pillow).” Another claims, “I’m currently pregnant with my 4th and I honestly don’t know HOW I ever lived without this pillow.”

But one mom warns that while the cover is washable, the material is very fragile, so it’s best to wash in a mesh bag.

Pros

  • can be used as a nursing pillow
  • versatile
  • offers full-body support

Cons

  • Material is washable material but fragile
  • Some reviewers found the pillow to be too flat

Best wedge pregnancy pillow

Boppy Pregnancy Wedge

Price: $

Small, but efficient, the Boppy Wedge can fit wherever you need support (your bump, your back, between your legs, etc.). The soft jersey cover zips on and off easily for machine washing, and reviewers say that while the level of firmness is surprising at first, it’s just the right amount for support.

Not only is this wedge small and lightweight enough to travel with, but it also won’t steal the bed from your partner. However, it can’t be used as a regular pillow or breastfeeding support pillow, so it has a shorter lifespan than some of the other options on this list.

Pros

  • small, lightweight, and good for travel
  • machine washable cover
  • firm and offers support

Cons

  • cannot be used as a breastfeeding support pillow
  • some reviewers reported a strong chemical smell

Best rated body pillow

Leachco Snoogle Original Total Body Pillow

Price: $$$

This pillow gets rave reviews for its overall snuggle. The Snoogle was designed to hug the entire body and mold to both the back and belly. Plus, the length is the same on each side, which means that even if you toss and turn, you’ll be surrounded by a ball of comfort.

If you’re wanting something that lasts beyond your pregnancy days, the Snoogle can also be used as a postpartum recovery pillow and support for bottle-feeding older babies.

Pros

  • molds to your back and belly
  • can be used as a postpartum recovery pillow
  • reviewers found that it alleviated joint pain

Cons

  • more expensive than other options
  • some reviewers report that the pillowcase is difficult to get back on after washing

Best shredded memory foam pregnancy pillow

Coop Home Goods Adjustable Body Pillow

Price: $$$

This extra-long pillow from Coop Home Goods is adjustable, meaning you can add or remove as much of the shredded microfiber and memory foam stuffing as you need for it to feel just right. Plus, this pillow is fully machine washable for easy cleaning.

While this option has a lot of perks, the only true downside is that the shredded memory foam lets off a funky smell when you first take it out of the packaging. Coop says popping the pillow in the dryer to tumble on low heat with a few dryer sheets should take care of this.

Pros

  • adjustable stuffing
  • fully machine washable
  • 5-year warranty

Cons

  • strong smell upon opening
  • some reviewers found it to be heavy and bulky

Best budget-friendly pregnancy pillow

Wamsutta Quilted Body Pillow

Price: $

If you’d rather avoid dropping money on a pregnancy-specific pillow, this basic body pillow is an affordable addition to your home that won’t look out of place even when your baby is grown.

While it doesn’t come with all the bells and whistles of a more traditional pregnancy pillow, this body pillow can still help support key parts of a mom-to-be’s body, offering comforting touch while you sleep. If you’d prefer all around comfort without the price tag, you can purchase two (one for the front and the back) to mimic the feel of a U-shaped pillow.

Pros

  • affordable price
  • 3-year limited manufacturer’s warranty
  • hypoallergenic

Cons

  • some reviewers found this pillow to be too flat
  • pillow quickly lost its shape for some users

Best pillow for encouraging side sleep

Boppy Side Sleeper Pregnancy Pillow

Price: $

If you’re looking for some stomach and back support (along with a reminder to stay on your side while you sleep), the Boppy Side Sleeper is a great option.

The stretch panel allows this pillow to grow with your bump, and the compact design has a machine washable cover. The only downside is the lack of leg and neck support, but since this model won’t steal the bed from your partner, maybe they’ll be willing to give you a massage!

Pros

  • machine washable cover
  • compact design
  • encourages side sleeping

Cons

  • lacks leg and neck support
  • some users found it did not support their growing bump

Best pillow for cuddling

PharMeDoc Maternity Body Pillow

Price: $$$

If you’re looking for something to comfortably cuddle to sleep, this u-shaped body pillow may be for you. It’s designed to support the back, hips, knees, and neck while pregnant. The adjustable material adapts to your belly shape. The detachable extension can be used for added support or as a separate pillow and includes a removable jersey-knit cotton pillowcase.

The material is not machine washable, so be prepared to wash this one by hand. It includes a manufacturer’s warranty. Some reviewers found the pillow to be flatter than they’d anticipated.

Pros

  • designed to provide full-body support
  • includes detachable extension
  • comes with a manufacturer’s warranty

Cons

  • more expensive than other options
  • some reviewers found the pillow to be too flat
  • not machine washable

Best pillow for travel

Leachco Snoogle Mini Chic Side Sleeper Pillow

Price: $$$

If you’re looking for a pregnancy pillow to take on the go, this compact mini side sleeper pillow is a solid option. It’s designed to provide support for your changing shape and is easy to pack. The pillow comes with a zippered removable cover that’s machine washable.

Pros

  • good for travel
  • compact size
  • includes a zippered removable, machine washable cover

Cons

  • higher price point
  • does not provide full-body support

Boppy Multi-Use Total Body PillowQueen Rose U-Shaped Pregnancy PillowPharMeDoc Full Body C-Shaped PillowBoppy Pregnancy WedgeLeachco Snoogle Original Total Body PillowCoop Home Goods Adjustable Body PillowWamsutta Quilted Body PillowBoppy Side Sleeper Pregnancy PillowPharMeDoc Maternity Body PillowLeachco Snoogle Mini Chic Side Sleeper
Price$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$
ShapeC-shapeU-shapeC-shapeWedgeC-shapeRectangular Rectangular Bow shapeU-shapeC-shape
ConsiderationsPossible chemical smellLarge in size May be too flat for some Possible chemical smellPillowcase is difficult to get back onHigher price pointPillow lost its shape quickly for some Lacks leg and neck support Higher price pointDoesn’t offer full-body support
Customer rating4.5 stars4.5 stars4.5 stars4.5 stars4.5 stars4.5 stars4.5 stars 4 stars4 stars 4 stars

From finding positions that work for your changing body to navigating safety concerns, getting proper rest while you’re pregnant isn’t always easy.

A 2019 study found that sleeping on your back as a pregnant person is generally not preferred. Instead, it’s recommended to sleep on your side. There’s mixed information regarding whether the left or right side is better, with some professionals referring to the left side as “ideal.” However, you don’t have to avoid your right side altogether.

In your first trimester, any sleeping position is usually OK. As your belly grows and you start your second trimester, you can start using a pregnancy pillow. You can position it so that it runs along your back and then hug the front while simultaneously slipping it between your knees.

During your third trimester, you should continue using your pregnancy pillow for support. You may prefer a wedge pillow to accommodate your growing belly, though. You should sleep on your side, but if it’s too uncomfortable, you can try using pillows to prop up your upper body at a 45-degree angle.

Throughout your first trimester, sleeping on your back and belly is fine, but you’ll probably want to switch to your side around weeks 16 to 18.

Here are a few more things to consider when purchasing your dream (pun intended!) pregnancy pillow:

Bed sharing

If you sleep with a partner, you’ll want to run the size of your future pregnancy pillow by them, since it may take up part of the bed they normally enjoy.

Fabrics and fillings

If you run warm, you may want to consider using a cotton covered pregnancy pillow instead of a less breathable fabric like polyester.

Additionally, when considering the type of filling you want in your pregnancy pillow, think about how firm you like your pillows and mattress. This can help guide you to choose the right filling- whether that’s an inflated pillow, a memory foam wedge, or a fluffy body pillow!

Your sleep style

The style of sleep you preferred before becoming pregnant may be an indicator of what type of pregnancy pillow will help you sleep best. Factor in whether you’re typically a front, back, or side sleeper when thinking about which pregnancy pillow setup makes sense for you.

Are body pillows good for pregnancy?

Yes — a full-length pillow provides support for the body to help prevent lower back and pelvic pain that may be experienced during pregnancy. It can also help to provide a more comfortable night’s sleep, as well as lessen aches and pains the following day. That being said, picking the most comfortable type of pregnancy pillow for you is a highly personal choice.

Are pregnancy pillows washable?

It depends on the pillow. Some pillows are fully machine washable, but many are far too large or are made of materials that don’t hold up in the wash. Many options come with removable, washable covers.

When should you start using a pregnancy pillow?

You can begin using a pregnancy pillow as soon as you’d like, but you’ll probably find it most comfortable during your second and third trimesters. The goal is to help you feel comfortable and supported as you sleep.

You can also use some pregnancy pillows for postnatal support.

Is a C-shaped or U-shaped pregnancy pillow better?

It depends on what you’re looking for. A U-shaped version will offer support for both your back and front, but it takes up more bed space. Alternatively, a C-shaped pillow will take up a little less space, but it does not offer the full-body support you may be craving.

Growing a human being is hard work! You can use all the rest and relaxation possible. Sadly, your growing baby bump and new pressure points may be making finding a comfortable sleep position difficult.

Luckily, there’s a plethora of pregnancy pillow options for you to choose from, and we’ve done our best to be a helpful matchmaker. Sleep soundly, mamas!