10 Best Baby Pillows & Tips On How To Avoid The Flat Head Syndrome

Twinkle, twinkle, little star
How I wonder what you are!
Up above the world so high
Like a diamond in the sky
Twinkle, twinkle, little star
How I wonder what you are.

After giving your baby a warm and relaxing bath, changing his diaper and putting his sleep romper on, it’s a lullaby time, and when the sleepy head reaches Dreamland, then you need a high quality pillow for your baby.

So, what are the best baby pillows and how to choose correctly? Does a newborn baby really need a pillow, or is it just another unnecessary purchase?

Babies should sleep on a flat surface free of pillows, blankets or other soft bedding until age 1, according to the Women’s and Children’s Health Networks’ safe sleep guidelines. The only thing the crib needs is a simple fitted sheet.

On the other hand, newborns can develop a condition known technically as positional plagiocephaly which is more commonly known as flat head syndrome, which is a very common occurrence in newborns aged 7-12 weeks and is basically flat spots on the back of the skull. Babies normally outgrow the syndrome and there are no links to it affecting the baby’s brain but one can use a plagiocephaly pillow to prevent this from happening.

Editor’s Choice

Organic Cotton Cloud Lamb Pillow

Organic Cotton Cloud Lamb Pillow

Why is it better?

  • Eco friendly, 100% natural organic cotton
  • Hypoallergenic polyester filling
  • Breathable and dye free
  • Functional design aiming to prevent flat head syndrome
  • Double sided for extra use if one side flattens out
  • Easy to clean and wash

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The Lineup At A Glance

Product Material Machine washable Dimensions Check price
Organic Cotton Cloud Lamb PillowOrganic Cotton Cloud Lamb Pillow Organic Cotton Yes 14 x 9 x 3 in

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OCCObaby Universal Bassinet WedgeOCCObaby Universal Bassinet Wedge Foam No 15 x 2.6 x 12.2 in

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Sweeter Baby PillowSweeter Baby Pillow Bamboo memory foam No 9.1 x 9.1 x 1.2 in

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Bliss n' Baby Head Shaping PillowBliss n' Baby Head Shaping Pillow Organic Cotton Yes 11.8 x 8.3 x 1.6 in

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Boppy Head and Neck SupportBoppy Head and Neck Support Cotton / Polyester mix Yes 8.8 x 8.7 x 3.5 in

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Nimbli Baby Head Shaping PillowNimbli Baby Head Shaping Pillow Memory Foam No 9.5x8x1.5in

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Ashtonbee Newborn Baby PillowAshtonbee Newborn Baby Pillow Memory Foam No 11.1 x 11.1 x 3 in

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Mimos Baby PillowMimos Baby Pillow 3D spacer fabric Yes 8.3 x 11 x 1.2 in

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Modtickles Baby Head Shaping PillowModtickles Baby Head Shaping Pillow Memory Foam No 14.2 x 10.5 x 2.2 in

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Minky Mooh Infant Head Shaping PillowMinky Mooh Infant Head Shaping Pillow Memory foam No 9.7 x 8.9 x 1.7 in

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Best Baby Pillows on Today’s Market In 2019

1. Organic Cotton Cloud Lamb Pillow – The Best Choice

Organic Cotton Cloud Lamb Pillow

The organic cotton is always a top choice, no matter what baby accessory we talk about. You can rest assured that your baby isn’t breathing in any chemicals or residues from cotton that has been chemically treated, and above all – price is very reasonable.

  • Hypoallergenic
  • Organic cotton, dye and chemical free

  • Too high for preemies
  • Air drying takes some time

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This Organic Cotton Baby Protective Pillow – Cloud Lamb is made of super soft and eco-friendly natural organic cotton material. This baby pillow is naturally finished and it carries a hypoallergenic polyester filling so it can be used for babies who have sensitive skin.

It comes in an incredibly big variety of animal designs, from a sweet elephant and cuddly lamb to a fun little puppy and adorable bunny

Its design is functional and your baby head will get a complete and smooth support, the flat head syndrome can be prevented and you can use both of the sides of this pillow. It is recommended to hand wash it, but if you prefer machine wash, then put it on a gentle temperature.

2. OCCObaby Bassinet Wedge – Best Pillow for Babies with Reflux

Bassinet Wedge improves baby’s sleep, helps reduce spit-ups & reliefs congestion.
12-degree incline safely elevates your baby’s head & torso for sound and comfortable sleep.

  • Promotes healthy breathing
  • Reduces reflux

  • Not fit for use outside crib
  • Pricey

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Uniquely designed foam is firmer than the foam in other bassinet wedge products on the market. American Academy of Pediatrics does not recommend soft foam for infant bedding due to increased suffocation risk.

It works pretty simple: take the wedge pillow, place it on the head of the bassinet and cover it with fitted sheet. Put a sleepy baby at the higher end of the wedge, and voila! Baby is sleeping in a healthy and safe position.

This pillow is different than many other pillows on the market, it is designed specifically to be placed underneath the sheet in your baby crib. It comes in one universal size that fits almost every crib on the market. It has a wipeable waterproof cover for protection that is really easy to clean. The hypoallergenic pillow case is mold, bacteria, stain and odor resistant.

The pillow is free from BPA and other harsh chemicals such as pesticides and flame retardants.

3. Sweeter Baby Pillow – Best Head Support Pillow

Sweeter Baby Pillow

A simple design is always a winner. This baby pillow comes in the shape of a heart and the white color is a perfect match any nursery decor. It keeps baby’s head in alignment with the spine.

  • Machine washable
  • Comfortable and durable
  • Not effectively suitable for cars
  • A bit overpriced

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This is one pretty comfortable pillow and quite simple to use. It has bamboo memory foam which is soft, subtle and naturally antibacterial. Additionally, it has an organic cotton cover making it soft, smooth and chemically free on your newborns precious skin. The removable pillowcase is machine washable. Keep in mind that memory foam cannot be washed so always make sure this pillow has a cover to make it last longer.

The Sweeter Baby pillow can be used in a variety of places, crib, stroller, car seat and anywhere that your baby is laying flat on their back. The cushion allows full 180-degree head movement.

A growing infant needs high quality sleep to grow into a healthy child. This baby pillow is designed to cradle your infant’s head in the perfect sleeping position, allowing unobstructed breathing for a deep revitalizing sleep.

4. Bliss n’ Baby – Best Baby Shower Pillow Gift Set

Bliss n' Baby Head Shaping Pillow

This 100% pure organic cotton pillow is a great option for parents looking for a shaping pillow that is designed by pediatricians. It comes with an extra gift, making it perfect for a baby shower.

  • Design done by Pediatrician
  • Bigger size to accommodate older babies
  • Available in 1 print only

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The pillow is recommended for babies from infancy up to 14 months old. When talking about head support and aid coming from this pillow, it would be good to mention that the lightweight, 3D-air permeable mesh fabric used to make this pillow can also play a major role in reducing the risk of SIDS.

It’s machine-washable and should be dried on the lowest tumble-dry setting or hung up to air dry. This pillow is also super convenient. Because of its small rectangular size, it can easily fit into a diaper bag so you can take it with you whenever you need to go out.

5. Boppy Infant Head and Neck Support – Top Choice For On-The-Go

Boppy Head and Neck Support

This 2-in-1 head support is crash tested and approved. A removable neck ring provides support and the reversible summer & winter design provides support during all seasons.

  • Crash tested and approved (FMVSS-213)
  • Reversible design
  • Headrest doesn’t fit snugly into all models of car seat.
  • A bit expensive

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Babies spend a lot of time on their backs, from the car seat and their crib to the swing and stroller. It’s important that babies have proper support when on their backs, which is why this is a great baby pillow.

This is a half circle pillow with a cradle in the middle and a rectangle of fabric for resting behind the baby. This means you can use it in any car seat, crib, bassinet, or stroller. It will provide support no matter where you’re headed! Many infant car seats come with similar built-in support, but this baby pillow continues the support as baby grows, reducing flat head and preventing further growth. Can also be used without the head support as baby grows.

The velvety side provides extra warmth for babies during winter time, but you might want to reconsider turning the pillow on that side in case baby sweats a lot.
The pillow is machine washable.

6. Nimbli Baby Head Shaping Pillow – Infant Pillow and a Stylish Gift

Nimbli Baby Head Shaping Pillow

This head shaping pillow is the perfect option for babies who have very sensitive skin and are prone to seasonal allergies. Antibacterial layer is there as extra heath feature.

  • Has an antibacterial layer.
  • Can be used in a stroller.
  • Thick design.
  • Can’t be used for babies younger than 2 months.

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This baby head shape pillow helps your baby develop a round head over time with its contoured pillow center.
It is made from ergonomic high density memory foam with aim to ensure the most comfortable neck position for sleeping. This pillow is safe and super soft and does not restrict your baby’s movement.

The NimbliBaby memory foam pillow is a popular baby shower gift due to its cuteness and the price that really matches the products’ quality. It can also be used as head support in a baby car seat or stroller.
The removable pillowcase is machine washable. Keep in mind that memory foam cannot be washed so always make sure this pillow has a cover that will make it last longer.

7. Ashtonbee Newborn Baby Pillow – The Best Value For Money

Ashtonbee Newborn Baby Pillow

The pillow is designed to help the baby place the head and neck properly while sleeping and helps keep the head in alignment with the spine, and all for a price your budget will love!

  • Hypoallergenic and bacterial resistant material
  • Highly breathable
  • Weird smell of memory foam
  • Only hand wash otherwise hardens

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This infant pillow is soft and supple. It provides a great deal of comfort while still giving the essential support to keep the tiny head in proper alignment. Given the recommendation and advice of your pediatrician, using this baby pillow can encourage natural round growth of your baby’s head and can help prevent flat head syndrome and soft texture is there to ensure a comfortable sleep.

The pillow helps to improve airflow on the neck which enhances the quality of baby’s sleep. It is entirely made of hypoallergenic and bacteria resistant memory foam. The top cover is 100 % pure organic cotton which ensures soft feel and breathability.

The quality of the material is outstanding for its’ durability. As a baby pillow, this one meets the standards for safety and suitability to use on baby’s sensitive skin. The small curve at the center of the pillow is the helper that will help you position baby’s head appropriately. The pillow is small in its dimensions, letting you carry it around when needed to ensure your baby gets 24/7 the head support they need.

8. Mimos Baby Pillow – Trusted, Clinically Tested and Certified

Mimos Baby Pillow

Specially designed to evenly distribute pressure from the back of the baby’s head. Clinically tested for effectiveness, the results of the trial are published in a Health Journal.

  • Anti-static and anti-allergic
  • Has a dry and cooling effect
  • Pillowcase not included
  • Outrageously expensive

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Mimos baby pillow is a three-dimensional polyester sleeping pad for babies. It is designed by specialists such as physiotherapists and neurosurgeons aimed at reducing pressure on a baby’s head for the purpose of allowing the head to grow normally. It is ideal for all children below the age of 6 months for greater efficiency. This infant pillow eases the pressure on baby’s head and has shown great results, particularly when introduced at birth.

It is suitable for babies with mild brachycephaly as a corrective measure.

This pillow removes the need to worry about constantly re-positioning your baby. Simply place him in the manner that his head is located within the pillow’s cavity. This will reduce the pressure by distributing the weight of the head over a much larger area of contact. 

Maximum safety measures are being taken during this pillow’s manufacturing; even if your little one manages to roll so that he is breathing into the pillow, the risk of suffocation or carbon dioxide rebreathing is drastically reduced as this pillow is breathable.

What makes this pillow stand out is:

  • TUV certification for breathability 
  • European Safety certification EN71-1 
  • Textile safety certification – Oeko-Tex 100 Class 1 (safe for babies) 
  • Made in Spain

9. Modtickles Baby Head Shaping Pillow – The Best Multipurpose Pillow

Modtickles Baby Head Shaping Pillow

This pillow ensures your baby’s head is in the position aiming to prevent unnecessary strain around the neck muscles. It’s in a curved design, edges slightly raised for natural head position.

  • Hypoallergenic and antibacterial
  • Concave design
  • No extra variety of pillowcases

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The pillow keeps the baby fresh and comfortable for the many hours of sleep. It comes with a 100 % double cotton cover which is breathable to ensure proper wicking away of moisture and heat.
Optimal incline of 12-14 degrees enables anti-reflux while gradual elevation provides comfortable sleep positioning & seamless transition from bassinet to wedge pillow to promote air circulation & reduce colic. Additionally, this pillow has enough shoulder room to help distribute the weight evenly around the shoulders, neck, and head.

The high-density memory foam has a thin inner layer for enhanced support. It is hypoallergenic to ensure safety for your baby’s gentle skin. Also, the material is anti-bacterial and free from harmful chemicals such as BPA, lead, phthalates, formaldehydes, that could otherwise cause severe irritation and itch. The inner layer is easy to wipe clean drool & spit milk. The breathable anti-skid textured cotton outer cover is removable & machine washable
The pillow comes with an extra-large bib with adjustable snap closures. The burp cloth has a beautiful animal print.

This pillow can also be used as pregnancy cushion. It is an amazing baby shower gift idea any pregnant mother would love to receive, and also, budget wise, it’s a good gift choice.

10. Minky Mooh Infant Head Shaping Pillow – Organic Cotton, Yes, Please!

Minky Mooh Infant Head Shaping Pillow

If the parents can foresee in their budget an organic cotton accessory, it is a score. We’ve found an infant pillow that meets all the quality standard requirements and goes easy on your budget.

  • 100% knitted organic cotton
  • BPA and chemicals free
  • BPA and chemicals free

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With this super sweet pillow set, your baby can enjoy a soothing night’s sleep on their back with this carefully and ergonomically designed plagiocephaly newborn pillow.

The Minky Mooh anti flat head baby pillow is practical thanks to the two washable, additional pillow cases made of 100% organic cotton (GOTS certified), also healthier since the baby pillow is hypoallergenic, skin-safe and designed according to the Oeko-Tex Standard 100, free of chemicals, GMO’s or pesticides and herbicides.
Also, the pillow itself is gentle on baby’s skin, thanks to the use of 100% knitted organic cotton and memory foam filling. Breathable cotton material and soft texture makes it safe, too.

If a baby spills milk, no worries as the washing the pillow is a breeze – simply remove the cover and use the second one instead, yay! Machine wash is on gentle 30C.

Stop searching for the perfect baby shower gift, as this pillow comes with two organic cotton pillow cases in a practical, durable and reusable organic cotton bag, with a perfect design that will not leave a single person indifferent.

How to prevent flat head syndrome?

Flat head syndrome is a surprisingly common condition that affects 16 in every 1,000 babies.  Parents can reduce flat head syndrome by:

  • Limiting your baby’s time on their back when they are awake
  • Lay your baby down in a different way, especially if you see that baby prefers to be laid only on one side
  • Change the way your baby lays in her cot each week, this encourages your baby to look around, rather then keep her head in a single position
  • When you’re out and about, alternate between the stroller and carrier to change your baby’s position
  • Give your baby plenty of tummy time
  • Babies like to look around them, so it’s a good idea to change things round in the room or place lights so they’re tempted to look in different directions
  • Make sure if you’re breastfeeding to swap sides regularly so your baby gets used to using different muscles. Increase tummy time
  • Don’t let your baby stay too long in her bouncer or car seat as this can encourage other growth and development problems and prolonged car seat use as hard materials will press on the head

Don’t panic

Repositioning should be the initial treatment and very often the problem goes away on its own. If you’re concerned, consult your pediatrician.

Do you want to make sure the pillow your munchkin is using is adequate?

Here are qualities of the best pillow for newborn babies.

1. Quality of Materials

A baby’s skin is going to be gentle, and it is going to be prone to getting irritated. You have to give them something peaceful to rest on that is not going to give them any itch. Some materials for adults might be okay, but not going to work with the baby’s skin.
A pillowcase made out of organic cotton or a safe cotton blend will be enough to prevent irritations on your baby’s skin

2. Easy To Wash

A newborn baby is a walking mess, and the same applies to sleeping: They will be drooling, and a lot of mess can end up accumulated on the pillow. Most people are not going to want this in their life and rightly so. They are going to want som

3. Durability

A pillow that is not durable is one you are going to consider a waste of money.. You are certainly not going to pay some big bucks for a pillow that is going to ear down after a bit of use.
A good pillow is one that is going to last and is going to feel just as good a few months later as it does the moment you put it under the baby’s head for the first time.

4. Size and Thickness

The baby pillow that you purchase shouldn’t have any lumps that can strain your baby’s neck. It should be around 2 to 3 inches thick and smaller than an adult pillow to prevent suffocation due to excess material. The cavity of the pillow should also be the right size for your baby’s head circumference.

Frequently Asked Questions

What is a baby pillow

Pillows for newborns and young babies, most are sold as a tool that will help prevent plagiocephaly or “flat head” syndrome. They are also sold as safe-to-use in cribs and cots, from birth to around 12 months.

Do newborn babies need a pillow?

New parents are pretty much concerned about their baby’s comfort. However, any soft bedding material in the infant’s sleep area is a suffocation hazard. Newborns have very little head and neck control, and they will not be able to move their head to breathe if pillows or other soft bedding cover their noses and mouths.
The American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) announces new recommendations when it comes to baby sleeping safety that should be taken into consideration.

Will my baby feel uncomfortable without a pillow?

In the first few years of your child’s life, you don’t need to be concerned that your baby is uncomfortable without a pillow. You may not like sleeping without your pillow, but they won’t feel uncomfortable without one until their shoulders are wider than their heads.

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