6 expensive-feeling pillows (that are anything but) according to our sleep expert

You don't need to dip into your savings for a plush pillow

best affordable pillows Beckham Hotel Collection Pillows cut out on starry background
(Image credit: Beckham Hotel Collection Pillows)

As a strong beauty-sleep advocate, I'd always advise you to invest in the best quality bedding. But that doesn't mean you have to spend all of your savings on getting a great night's sleep. Whether you're after the best pillow around to replace those you've had for years, need a fresh pair to take to college, or just want a spare for when friends come to stay, you won't have to bankrupt yourself to enjoy quality.

You guessed it, I'm on a budget too. And even if I wasn't, spending over $100 on a pillow is outlandish to say the least, especially when it is totally possible to pick up a pair of top-notch pillows for under $10. We don't mean standard polyester-filled options either, we're talking about the good stuff. Think affordable memory foam, gel-fiber, and feels-like-down types too, there are so many good yet cheap pillows out there.

However, knowing which ones legitimately deliver both quality and good value for money isn't that simple, so I've done the research for you, and found six plush pillows that sit at a (more than) reasonable price for a pair, but that feel pretty damn nice. Yes, renters, roomies, and anyone looking for somewhere to rest their head, you don’t have to overspend on these expensive-feeling pillows. 

6 of the best affordable pillows, chosen by an expert

Why you can trust Real Homes Our expert reviewers spend hours testing and comparing products and services so you can choose the best for you. Find out more about how we test.

How we chose these cheap pillows 

Just like we did when choosing a cheap mattress, we researched, read reviews, and compared products that were below $30 (for one) against more expensive options. For those we have tested, we've made sure to balance sleep quality and price, so you can find the best value pillow for your budget. The Casper pillow on this list has been tested, for example, and is the cheapest, but number one in our best pillow guide. If you want to know more about what this involves (and yes, it's more than just resting our head), then you can get the low down in our how we test guide. 

Best affordable pillow stacked with glasses and a book behind

(Image credit: Amazon)

How do you buy bedding on a budget?

Whether you're looking for a cheap bedding set to take to college, a comfy pillow to replicate a luxury one you have used before, or simply don't have the cash to splash on a brand-new pillow, there are ways to still get a good night's sleep. Keeping an eye out for certain bedding features will help you choose a pillow that's comfortable and at the right price point:

1. Are the pillows, sheets, duvets, or whatever you're buying OEKO-TEX certified? This is the standard given to synthetic products that have been tested and proven to be free of harmful toxins or chemicals. Cheaper pillows are more likely to be made of polyester or have hollow fiber filling — so it's worth finding this out. 

2. Thread counts are an indicator of quality too. Though a higher thread count doesn't always mean more expensive. For instance, some of the pillows on this list come with high-thread count cotton covers that can be washed. This will help prolong the life of your pillow, making it a more cost-effective buy in the long run. 

3. Keep an eye out for bedding sales and mattress deals. There's no best time to buy bedding, and we wouldn't recommend holding off on a new pillow if you need one. That being said, if you can, Black Friday and Cyber Monday are known for having great deals on mattresses, duvets, protectors, and more. You could bag a bargain and get your best sleep yet, for less.

Louise Oliphant
Ecommerce Editor

Louise is the Ecommerce Editor at Real Homes, specialising in sleep content so you can wind-down well. With prior PR experience working for a luxury bedding brand, Louise knows the importance of getting a great night’s sleep. Joining the other side of the desk as a full-time journo, Louise brings her bedding expertise to writing sleep buying guides, reviews, and news for Real Homes. Aside from helping readers get essential shut eye, Louise also writes shopping content for homeware items that’ll add a decorative edge to your space. With an eye for design that won’t snooze on style, but a budget that won’t quite stretch, Louise loves nothing more than a modern designer dupe. From coloured glassware to contemporary storage, anything to upgrade the bare space of her rented East London flat.