To be technical about it, tube pillows are big, long, and narrow cylindrical pillows. They’re made with various materials, with the sole requirement being it must be comfortable and cozy, as tube pillows are intended to be snuggled during sleep.
Not being technical about it, tube pillows are seriously underrated. They’re perhaps the most valuable and comfort-enhancing pillow to sleep with. They help with several different pain-related conditions. And they’re highly versatile with many other practical uses, too.
In other words, once you go tube pillow and experience their great comfort, you'll never go back.
Who Should Use a Tube Pillow?
Anyone who enjoys feeling comfortable and snuggly while they sleep? Just kidding.
But really, anyone can and should be using a tube pillow. Most people just don’t know about them, or haven’t been introduced to them the right way, or simply don’t know about all the benefits they have to offer.
Tube pillows are particularly heroic for pregnant women, with many saying they wouldn’t have been able to sleep without them. Once the baby bump “pops” or really begins to grow, side sleeping is essentially the only option. When sleeping becomes increasingly challenging, a tube pillow can be used in multiple ways, all of which providing relief for newfound pressure points.
New mothers also love tube pillows because they can help support the baby during nursing, be used for snuggling together, and serve as a makeshift “barrier” to prevent babies from rolling over in their crib.
People who suffer from back pain or shoulder issues can benefit from sleeping with a tube pillow as the pillow can be used in various positions to relieve pressure for specific areas.
For those who just generally have difficulty sleeping, there’s a growing body of research confirming that the act of hugging even an inanimate object - like a tube pillow - provides comforting psychological effects. Besides exercise, meditation, limiting screen time, etc., try sleeping with a tube pillow to help you get the restful sleep you need and deserve.
Sleeping With a Tube Pillow
There are several ways to use a tube pillow, but the bedroom is where it really gets its time to shine.
Let’s talk hugging. We briefly mentioned the comforting psychological effects of hugging a pillow while we sleep, but it truly is a game-changer. The “cuddle hormone” released when we hug, formally known as Oxytocin, creates feelings of calmness and relaxation, essentially embodying that warm feeling when we experience when embracing a loved one.
The part that’s so amazing is that we’re able to experience these same feelings and benefits even when we’re hugging inanimate objects. Embracing a tube pillow mimics a “real” hug and can be extremely comforting, even after the longest and most stressful of days.
Let’s talk alignment. Sleeping with a tube pillow dramatically improves your alignment and supports healthy posture.
For side sleepers, placing the pillow between your knees and hugging it with your arms significantly reduces the “twist” that your spine is otherwise experiencing. The pillow helps keep your spine, hips, and neck aligned, relieving tension for joints and surrounding muscles. This support enhances comfort, improves circulation, and encourages healthy posture into the next day.
A variation of a tube pillow is a half-moon bolster pillow, which looks exactly as its name suggests. Half-moon bolster pillows may even be superior for supporting healthy alignment as they can be used in several different ways and often provide more structure. This half-moon bolster pillow is orthopedically designed with soft yet firm memory foam that responds to body heat to perfectly contour your unique curves.
The curved half-moon shape of the pillow was designed with ergonomics top-of-mind and is highly versatile, able to support the lower back, lumbar region, spine, hips, legs, and knees. For example, when laying on your back, the half-moon pillow can be placed underneath the knees to offload some pressure for the spine, encourage healthy posture, and reduce tension on joints. It can also be placed underneath the neck, arms, legs, lower back, beside you, or used as a pillow to promote healthy alignment.
Let’s talk side sleeping. We love side sleeping as much as the next guy, but unfortunately, this doesn’t make it the perfect position. Side sleeping puts the entirety of your body weight on your shoulders and hips. By the time the morning rolls around, the joints, ligaments, and muscles in these regions have been under substantial stress and pressure for several hours.
Tube pillows can be used to support your arms, shoulders, and hips, and essentially soothe your entire body by lessening the stress on those sharp pain points. Side sleeping isn’t perfect, but a tube pillow can make it much more comfortable and prevent waking up with aches and pains the following day.
Let’s talk mattress mayhem and steadiness. The firmness of your mattress is so, so important, and a mattress that is too firm creates stress for joints and muscles, all night long. The thing is, we’re usually too accustomed to our mattress’ density and aren’t able to pinpoint why we aren’t able to sleep soundly or comfortably. And what do we do when we’re uncomfortable? We toss and turn.
Tossing and turning lead us into twisted shapes, and twisted shapes sound a lot like improper alignment and pressure on all the wrong places. The versatility of a tube pillow, and even a half-moon bolster pillow,(long narrow pillow or cushion filled with cotton, down, or fiber) helps you find that comfortable position that will help you get to sleep and stay asleep. A Microbead Bolster Pillow is a great choice when looking for the ultimate cushie pillows custom-made for comfort.
It's important to note that the material used in the pillow can play a role in your sleep quality. Some options to choose the right comfort for you are organic cotton, bamboo, polyester, or microfiber. Bolster pillows typically come with a removable outer case for ease when needing cleaning.
How To Make A Bolster Pillow
Forming The Ends
Fold the fabric in half, right-side facing in. Set a paint can on top of the fabric, near the bottom edge. Trace around the paint can with a fabric marker. Stitch a row of long stitches around each circle. Clip the edge of each circle of the bolster pillow half an inch apart, all the way around. Find the circumference of the 2 circles by measuring the diameter of the circles.
Forming The Body
Using measuring tape or a compass, decide what you want the circumference of your pillow to be. Next, cut a rectangle of fabric. Add an inch to the perimeter to get the cut length of the rectangular fabric piece. Fold the rectangle in half lengthwise. Pin the edges of one circle to one edge of the rectangle. This is so that it fits inside the rounded edge of the rectangle. If you choose not to, you'll have excess fabric on the edges of your pillow. Pull the long row of stitches on the circle to gather it together. Start sewing the circle to the edge of the rectangle. Use the row of long stitching on the fabric as a guide as you sew the pillow so that it is concealed when the decorative pillow is finished. Repeat with the second circle.
Making The Shape
Fold a towel so that it measures 2 feet long. Turn the fabric of the pillow right-side out. Hand-sew the second circle to the pillow, making sure to conceal the raw edges.
Once completed, fill in the pillow with your choice of batting and try to smooth out any lumps. Use a needle and stitch the open end.
The Pillow You’ve Been Missing but Definitely Need
So, what is a tube pillow? It’s quite literally the pillow of your dreams.
Better yet, the joys of a tube pillow extend far beyond the bedroom:
- Assisting you in deep stretches, particularly on the floor
- In yoga practice as a tool for relaxation and revitalization
- Serve as makeshift back support while sitting in a chair
- Decor accessories for your sofa, couch or armchair
- Serve as a makeshift lumbar support pillow
- As a workout prop, a perfect neck pillow for supporting the neck during core work
- As an armrest while watching TV
- As decor to add geometric design elements, sprucing up any living space
Maybe the question should be, “what aren’t tube pillows?”
We take comfort seriously, and so should you. Experiencing mysterious and chronic aches and pains is no way to live life. Most of the time, improving our sleeping environment solves the problem. We spend a third of our day in bed; doesn’t it make sense to optimize it and make it your true safe haven?
Investing in a tube pillow or half-moon bolster pillow is investing in yourself. And take it from us, ensuring you’re getting restful, sound sleep is well worth your while.