The crème of camping pillows
The best camping pillow? Did someone just say ‘camping pillow?’ Well, yes, there are plenty of pillows out there specially designed for the outdoors, which we are about to review. But before we get into all that, let me bore you with my love affair with nature.
I was your typical couch potato, only without the tires around my waist. Thankfully, I was too young and metabolically active to gain any significant weight from all the junk I stuffed my face with.
I was happy lounging on the couch and hogging the remote, until the day my dad forced my lazy hide out of the couch for a weekend of ‘outdoor adventure.’ I cannot say I loved it, but I didn’t hate it either. What happened after that weekend is, well, history.
What is a Camping Pillow anyway?
A camping pillow is not so different from the conventional one, but for a few tweaks. Because you will probably have a lot in your camping bag, most companies that specialize on these pillows make them very easy to pack and carry.
There are mostly three types of camping pillows:
- Compressible pillows are filled with soft feathers and synthetic fibers. They are incredibly soft and as the name suggests, can be compressed completely into small, easy-to-carry packages.
- Inflatable pillows are just that; blow air into the bag and voila! They are the least comfortable of camping pillows, but in the other hand, the most portable.
- Hybrid pillows attempt to bridge the gap between the compressible and inflatable pillows.
The kangaroo pouch is great with the drawstring
The carry pouch is excellent is serves its purpose quite well.
Great customer service. Nice size.
Great for sleeping in a hammock
The "memory foam" is more like stiff packing foam
Not so comfortable
Sometimes it does not hold air
Too small and flimsy even for camping
Black | Brown | Green | Gray
14 x 18 in
12 x 18 in
20 x 12 in
20 x 12 in
16 x 12 in
P5 Poly Hi–Count
80% Polyester, 20% TPU
Why should you consider a Camping Pillow?
Now, even though you will be out in the wild becoming one with nature does not mean your neck won’t suffer from the hard surface when you lie down without the support of a good pillow. It will provide great support for your neck when you lay face-up to stare at the stars.
The ground beneath your sleeping bag will not feel like your bed at home, but isn’t that why you are here? To bag some serious bragging rights?
5 Best Camping Pillow Reviews 2018
Therm-a-Rest Compressible Pillow
14 X 18 in
Lightweight, packable, baby soft
12 x 18 in
Colorful, sizeable, super light, soft.
7.5 x 10.7 x 15 in
Portable, user-friendly, comfortable
20 x 12 in
Durable, waterproof material, adjustable.
Therm-a-Rest Lumbar Pillow
2 x 7 x 8 in
Soft, super light, easy to launder
1. The Mighty Therm-a-Rest Camping Pillow - lightweight, packable, baby soft
This soft camping pillow weighing a mere 8 ounces is certainly one of the best on the market. The outer material is brushed polyester, while the inside is filled with soft urethane foam. It comes in three sizes: small, 12” X 16”, medium at 14” X 18”, and large at 16” X 23”.
When you first see these pillows, you would think that the seller duped you. They are vacuum-packed and so quite compact. This is the same bag that you will pack them in when you travel, and so you will reduce your load considerably. When you unpack this pillow, give 20 minutes to expand and watch as it comes to its full size.
2. TETON Sports Camping Pillow - colorful, sizeable, super light, soft
This 12x18In camping pillow comes in only one size but is usually compressed during transit. Once you have unpacked it, allow it to decompress for about 20 minutes. The packed size is 4x7x9 inches, which is quite convenient for transport. You get the packing bag with your purchase, and so this is the same size you will have when packing for your rendezvous with nature.
This package comes with a lifetime-limited warranty, which means that the manufacturer covers you for any defect in the material or workmanship.
3. Ohuhu Camping Pillow - portable, user-friendly, comfortable
These two small pillows come as part of a bigger package-a sleeping bag from Ohuhu. They are made out of a blend of cotton and polyester for the ultimate soft feel on your skin.
The foam filling makes them all the more soft. As they come with the sleeping bag, their cost is practically negligible. They are so minute and light that you will almost forget you brought pillows along for the ride.
The manufacturer advises on washing it first before using it fluff it up. After every wash, it goes back to its normal loft for complete comfort.
4. ONWEGO Camping Pillow / Inflatable Air Pillow - durable, waterproof material, adjustable
This inflatable camping pillow by Onwego is the ideal package t take to the beach, backpacking, and any other outdoor event. It comes deflated (of course) in a perfect travel size. It is super soft and even waterproof for when you decide to play around a water body.
It measures 20in x 12in. 5.5in x 6in when deflated and in a travel bag. It also weighs 10.5 oz, which is almost as light as a softball. It comes in an array of colors for the esthetic inclined.
5. Therm-a-Rest Camping Pillow - soft, super light, easy to launder
This self-inflating pillow is one of a kind. It comes in one beautiful color, eggplant, and one size, 2 x 7 x 8 inches. The valve on the pillow keeps the air locked in for whatever period you want.
The Valve Keeps It Inflated - It has a valve to keep air in. Inflation is quite easy and fast. All you do is blow hard into it and then adjust the air according to how thick you want it. The valve will keep it in the amounts that you want it. You can keep it inflated for as long as you want.
Why should you love Camping Pillow?
Comfort! That is the first and only thing I want when I lay my tired body to sleep. Granted that sleeping on a hard surface in the woods does not make for much comfort, but I will make do with what I have.
Some pillow will drift to la-la land without the support of a pillow on their head, but for the rest of us, pillows are a necessity. Sleeping on a flat surface makes me feel as though my head is upside down. It suffocates me (at least in my head).
Apart from comfort, there are other reasons why a pillow is a good idea when you head out camping.
A pillow supports your head and neck so that you do not wake up the next morning feeling like a small football team trampled on your neck as you slept. If you have gastroesophageal reflux disease, raising your head a few inches when you sleep also helps with gravity.
It gives you something to hog; well, at least those who like the feeling of having something to hold on to. A sleeping bag for one can get a bit lonely.
It aligns your spine to give you a better posture when you sleep. Although studies are inconclusive on the effectiveness of a pillow when sleeping (as far as position alignment goes), most people report t feel better.
Soft compressible camping pillows are a favorite of many because they are gentle on the neck. When you lay your weight on them, your head sinks right in, and the neck aligns perfectly. It will be just like having your home pillow with you.
Inflatable pillows work for some people too, but they lose marks for the noise. To adjust it to your liking, you only need to blow in enough air and to let some out to suit your preference. It certainly is not as comfortable as the compressible kind that is filled with soft material, but it stretches a mile to conform.
If you prefer having your head raised a few inches off the surface of your mattress or sleeping bag, then a sleeping pillow is a necessary item for your camp days. They are smaller to fit into your bag, but they do wonders for the neck.
Factors to consider when buying the Best Camping Pillow
The perfect camping pillow is out there. You only need to go through thousands of brands to discover. That’s why we did this review-so that you don’t have to go through that gruesome process. Here are the mains we thought you should consider when making your maiden purchase.
This is certainly the most important factor to consider when buying a camping pillow. The fabric should be soft enough to offer as much comfort as possible, whole being breathable.
It should allow in air to enable you to drift away peacefully. As much as you can help it, go for washable material.
Now, this is probably you biggest concerns unless you are taking your car or an RV. You will need to keep your bag as light as possible to prevent them from getting in the way of your movement. Some camping pillows come in the tiniest packs.
When we think comfort and neck support, most of us think ‘soft.’ But is it always really the case?
When shopping for a camping pillow you want one that offers your neck the best support. It may or may not be the softest, but it should at least be supportive enough.
- Shape and Size
Unfortunately, dear camper, there are not too many choices for shape mostly due to the limited sleeping area.
You can opt for a camping pillow that does not give you trouble fitting into your sleeping bag. Additionally, the smaller it is, the better for storage.
- Ease of Use
You will be it of your comfort zone, probably lathering up with mosquito repellant to keep the nuisance away, so the last thing you need is a camping pillow to test your patience.
Ease of use, for us, is in the form of packing, unpacking, and setup. We also prefer a pillow with fabric that washes and dries easily in case you need to have it cleaned in a jiffy.
- The Price
We always ignore this factor but remember you want to fit every accessory within your budget. Quality is everything, and if it comes at a slightly higher price, then it would not hurt to splurge a little.
If camping is your thing and you do not mind investing in a pillow that you will use for a good while, then go ahead and spend.
However, do not break the bank. There are plenty of affordable, yet excellent camping pillows, as you will note in this review.
It’s a Wrap!
If you are a regular camper, then you must know the need to stay comfortable. While some people may live by the minimalist theory, some of us do not mind some level of luxury.
A pillow can change your camping adventure by far and even give you a new way of looking at it. I still think a camping pillow is a basic if you like sleeping with one at home.
From the review, we have broken various brands down to help you make an informed decision. My all-time favorite is Therm-a-Rest Compressible Pillow, for its simplicity and effectiveness.
This pillow is made of durable yet soft material that launders easily. It is made in the US under favorable conditions. I like the price too, which is just right for a pillow that will keep you company for many camping nights. I find its size to be ideal, and the compact packaging convenient. It is so light (0.9 pounds) that you can even carry it in your hand luggage when you travel.
Buy your camping pillow and let the adventures begin! Happy camping!