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January 12, 2022

Pillow Terminology Decoded

two fluffy chamber pillows laying on a hotel room bed with window in the background

Have you ever searched for the perfect hotel pillow and stumbled upon terms you didn’t understand? You may not be alone. Selecting a comfortable hotel pillow is important business. Your job is to help guests experience a good night’s sleep. A pillow is quintessential to a comfortable sleep experience. We want to help you choose the right pillow by decoding terms often used when describing a pillow.

Common Terminology When Selecting a Hotel Pillow

Standard Textile's Chambersoft Pillow

ChamberSoft® Pillows have an internal chamber to enhance the guest sleep experience.

Fill Type – The material that fills a pillow.

There are many different fill types, but the main ones are feather, polyester, down, and down alternative. Knowing the fill type of a pillow is useful since it tells us the softness and loft (height) of the pillow.

You may have heard rumors that feather and down pillows are higher quality and more luxurious. However, these rumors are not true. All fill types can be high-quality. Each fill type has different benefits:

  • Feather and down pillows provide extra softness and excellent warmth. If your hotel guests prefer the feel of natural feather pillows, we suggest checking out the ChamberLoft® pillow.
  • Polyester pillows provide softness and durability while being more budget friendly.
  • Down alternative pillows offer the feel of a down pillow with a more budget-friendly price. Down alternative can also be easier to launder than down. If this is up your alley, check out ChamberSoft® and ChamberFirm®.

Chamber – An enclosed section of a pillow that contains filling.

Some pillows are designed with chambers to provide the combined benefits of different fill types in one pillow. Chamber pillows often offer long lasting comfort and support. While they can be more expensive, chamber pillows offer a better sleep experience for guests. In fact, some luxury hotels even promote using chamber pillows to convey to guests their sleep experience matters most.

Firmness – How easily a pillow gives into weight.

Varying in level of firmness, hotel pillows can be soft, medium, or firm. The level of firmness that provides optimum comfort depends on the guest’s sleeping position. According to Harvard Health, stomach sleepers should use a soft pillow, back sleepers should use a medium pillow, and side sleepers should use a firm pillow.

Some hotels offer guests a selection of hotel pillows with a variety of firmness levels to choose from. Arranging the guest bed with a soft pillow and a firm pillow can provide guests with a choice. Or they could select SoftSupport Hotel Pillows which combine distinct soft and firm experience zones.

Ticking – A tightly woven outer covering of a pillow, usually made of cotton, cotton/poly, polyester, vinyl, or nylon.

The main purpose of ticking is to keep down or feather filling from poking out of the pillow. Ticking can also help maintain a pillow’s shape, and a 100% cotton ticking provides breathability. Selecting a hotel pillow with the right ticking for your guests is a priority in providing a comfortable experience.

Gusset – The side panels sometimes added to a pillow’s seams.

A hotel pillow is sometimes given a gusset to expand the pillow, increase its loft (height), or to strengthen it. Gusseted pillows are an inexpensive way to provide the look of a large, fluffy-looking hotel pillow.

ProTip: Even the highest quality pillows need to be laundered and cared for correctly. To enhance your guests’ sleep experience even further, it is important to know how to properly take care of your newly selected pillows. Be sure to check out our blog on Proper Pillow Care.

3 Keywords for Clean Hotel Pillows

2 allerease platinum pillows laying against a hotel bed headboard

AllerEase® Platinum Pillows protect against spills, microbes, bed bugs, allergens, and more

If you’re looking for a pillow that will ensure your guests’ safety and health, keep an eye out for the following three keywords.

1. Waterproof

A pillow that is waterproof will protect against spills and stains. This makes it easier to keep the pillow sanitary between guests and provides a cleaner appearance.

Hoteliers may want to select a waterproof hotel pillow to provide guests peace of mind.

2. Allergen Barrier

A pillow with an allergen barrier has tight weaving to prevent dust mites, pet dander, pollen, and other common allergens from collecting in the pillow.

Hoteliers may want to select a pillow with an allergen barrier to provide greater comfort and protection to guests with allergies, as well as to provide all guests reassurance that their hotel pillow is clean.

3. Antimicrobial

An antimicrobial pillow uses fabric that prevents the occurrence and growth of bacteria, mold, and mildew. This helps prevent the pillow from having a bad odor.

Hoteliers may want to select an antimicrobial pillow not only to give guests peace of mind that their pillow doesn’t contain anything dangerous or dirty, but also to protect their guests and cleaning staff from illness.

AllerEase® Pillows offer all of these features and more, including a bed bug barrier. Alternatively, if you’re already satisfied with your current pillows, but want the added protection of a waterproof barrier, allergen barrier, and antimicrobial properties, consider utilizing AllerEase® Pillow Protectors with your current pillows.

The Hospitality Sleep Experience and Pillows

A hotel pillow is an essential part of a person’s daily sleep experience. In fact, University of California Psychology Professor Adriana Galvan found through a sleep study that those who reported a higher satisfaction with their bedding and pillows also had greater sleep quality.

Therefore, it truly is important that guests be provided with a comfortable pillow. Using the new terminology we reviewed, you can now select pillows with more ease and confidence.
To begin your search for the right pillow, we offer a variety of options to meet your preference and budget. Contact our team to discuss the right pillow for you.