Are Down Pillows Good? 6 Benefits to Consider

January 24, 2022 | Casper Editorial Team

A lot goes into getting a good night’s sleep: the right environment, a nightly routine, a consistent sleep schedule, and of course, a cozy bed pillow to sink into. For many, the perfect pillow is filled with the soft feathers found on the underbellies of waterfowl like swans, ducks, and geese—better known as down. But what is a down pillow and what makes it so great?

Unlike regular feather pillows (stuffed with feathers plucked from birds’ wings and backs), down pillows lack quills, meaning you won’t be poked or prodded out of that cathartic dream you’re having. That’s far from the only upside of down pillows, however. 

Read on to discover six benefits of down pillows that put other types of pillows to rest.

From year-round cozy comfort to ethically sourced materials, Casper Down Pillows provide a multitude of benefits that draw you to bed every night. 

#1 Fluffy Comfort

Down feathers look almost like little tufts of cotton, and they feel like them, too. That makes for unmatchable softness in the animal and pillow kingdoms alike.

Down clusters together within a pillow, compressing in an airy sort of way under your weight while retaining its luxuriously fluffy comfort. 1You’ll feel like you’re sleeping on a cloud—an overused metaphor, maybe, but no less apt for it.

#2 Adaptable, Responsive Support

Luckily, down’s fluffiness doesn’t come at the cost of support. They may not be as supportive as the other alternative pillow options like a memory foam pillow, but Casper Down Pillows are made with a unique five-chamber design optimized for all sleep positions. How does that design work, you ask? Simple:

  • The inner chambers ensure this firm pillow adapts to your sleep position, responding even if you are a side, back, or stomach sleeper.
  • The outer chambers maintain the pillow’s general puff without hindering its adaptability.

Since the inner and outer chambers sync up, the pillow is never working against you or putting pressure on your neck. So, while support isn’t the main draw of a down pillow, the five-chamber design does much to provide sufficient cushioning.

#3 Warm Through the Winter, Breathable Through Summer

It might be hard to imagine since we don’t have a feather fill, but down is an incredible thing when it comes to fighting off the chills. Birds can trap and hold pockets of air with down, becoming warmer and warmer the more air there is.2

Naturally, then, nothing complements a big, cozy blanket on a cold winter night better than a down pillow. You’ll be nice and toasty without overheating.

Worried about how a down pillow will fare in the summer? No need—down is a breathable material, so excess heat won’t linger for long.3

#4 Easy to Care For

The best way to extend a down pillow’s lifespan is to take good care of it, and it’s thankfully quite easy to maintain. Here’s how to wash a pillow that has down filling:

  1. Vacuum. Run over the pillow’s surface with a handheld vacuum. Stains will remain, but vacuuming should clear off any dust mite and other particulates.
  • Wash. After checking the tags for any specific instructions, you can put down pillows straight in the washing machine—preferably two at a time for better distribution. A cold wash works best (warmer water and fabric aren’t the best of friends), and be sure to use a milder soap. A second rinse cycle will help to rinse away extra soap.
  • Dry. As with washing, keep the heat as low as possible when drying your down pillows. Use air-dry or tumble-dry, and toss in a few dryer balls, so the pillows stay shapely. A down feather filled pillow doesn’t have the water resistance of their wing and back cousins, so be prepared to run another drying cycle if needed.

Giving your down pillows a good wash every six months should keep them ship-shape. You can also use a pillow protector or pillow cover to help prevent any stains or dust mite infestation. 

#5 Downright Durable

There comes a time when, no matter how good the dreams you had while sleeping on it, you have to say goodbye to your favorite pillow. With proper care taken into consideration, however, down pillows will last even longer than they’re built to—about 5-10 years, if not a couple more.4

#6 Ethically Sourced Feathers

As wonderful as that all sounds, you might be worried about the well-being of our feathery friends. Fear not for the fowl, however. 

The down we use at Casper is ethically sourced and certified by the Responsible Down Standard (RDS).5

What does that mean, exactly? The RDS strives to accurately ensure that birds used for down and feathers didn’t experience animal cruelty in any way, shape, or form, or at any point on the supply chain.

Down pillows are a gift, and it’s only right to thank the gift-givers.

Bed Down with a Casper Down Pillow

So, are down pillows good? Let’s put it this way: You may never know what it’s like to fly, but sleep on a down pillow, and you just might dream about it.

Are you on the hunt for the best down pillow? Comfortable, warm, and ethically sourced, the Casper Down Pillow is a great choice for a cozy night’s sleep, no matter your sleep position. And if you’re looking for a down alternative pillow, Casper’s got you covered better than your bed sheets.


  1. Sleep Advisor. Down Pillows vs. Feather Pillows – What’s the Difference?
  2. Cuddledown. The Benefits of using Down Pillows.
  3. Pacific Coast Feather Company. How to Tell When Your Pillow Needs Replacing.
  4. Textile Exchange. Responsible Down Standard (RDS).