The Best Camping Pillows in 2021 (Reviewed & Compared)

Get Comfy on a Trip Anywhere in the World

February 10, 2021

If you’re an adventurer who enjoys traveling and camping, you’ve probably been to some remote places as you let your wanderlust spirit lead the way. That said, you must have spent hours finding the perfect tent, the right clothes, and the warmest sleeping bag. 

But what about the best camping pillow?

There’s no need to keep putting a rolled-up sweatshirt under your head. Today, we’ll help you find the best pillow to make sure you wake up fresh and motivated. We based our research criteria on the following:

  • Usability
  • Pillow type
  • Fill and material
  • Warranty
  • Value

Let’s get down to business!

Top 3 Best Camping Pillows

The 10 Best Camping Pillows

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Company
Features
Overall Score
Best Camping Pillow - Nemo Review
Best Camping Pillow in 2021
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    Adjustable

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    Made of upcycled materials

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    Easy to use

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    6" high

Best Camping Pillow - Therm-a-Rest Review
Best Budget Option
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    Fast compression

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    Multiple colors

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    Upcycled materials

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    Three sizes

Best Camping Pillow - Sea to Summit Review
Best Lightweight Pillow
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    Two colors

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    Lock system

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    Multifunctional valve

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    For back and side sleepers

Best Camping Pillow - Hyperlite Review
Best Adjustable Sack Pillow
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    Two sizes

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    For all sleeping positions

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    Waterproof material

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    Fleece interior

Best Camping Pillow - Cocoon Review
Best Two-Sided Pillow
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    Two colors

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    Sophisticated valve

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    Removable and replaceable bladder

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    For back sleepers

Best Camping Pillow - Klymit Review
Best Camping Pillow for Back Sleepers
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    X-shaped design

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    Great neck support

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    Removable cover

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    Adjustable firmness

Best Camping Pillow - Exped Review
Best Blow-up Pillow for Light Camping
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    Removable, washable cover

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    Adjustable height and firmness

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    Soft fleece padding

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    Three attachment eyelets

Best Camping Pillow - Sierra Designs Review
Best Versatile Pillow for Tent Camping
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    2-in-1 design

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    Can fit into any hooded mummy bag

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    Great for stomach sleepers

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    Small size

Best Camping Pillow - Big Agnes Review
Best Pierce-Resistant Material
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    Stretch nylon

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    One size

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    Easy inflation and deflation

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    Weight-reducing l-beams

Best Camping Pillow - Teton Review
Best Inflatable Camping Pillow
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    Microfiber top that absorbs sweat

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    Non-slip bottom

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    Lightweight

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    Easy, fast inflation and deflation

Camping Pillow Reviews

Nemo Fillo King Camping Pillow Review

Best Camping Pillow - Nemo Fillo King Camping Pillow Review
  • Best Camping Pillow in 2021

  • Type: Hybrid

  • Lifetime warranty

  • Free shipping on orders over $99

  • Price: $69.95

PROS :
  • Eco-friendly materials

  • Best camping pillow for side sleepers

  • Versatile

CONS :
  • Large and heavy

Nemo’s Fillo King is a 6″ high pillow filled with air and upcycled, premium foam, covered neatly with a soft jersey blend that provides coolness. The company claims that this is the best camping pillow for a side sleeper with broad shoulders. 

Often referred to as the “king of the hill,” this pillow is pretty versatile, making it ideal for all sorts of camping and traveling. In fact, you can sleep on it while traveling via plane, train, or car, using it as a travel pillow. Moreover, you can use it for lumbar support.

Since the pillow is inflatable, you need to blow air into it until you get the shape you want. This only takes a second. To deflate it, let the air out and roll the pillow into a stuff sack.

While the Fillo King is one of the most comfortable camping pillows on the market, we need to mention one inconvenience. The pillow is large (17″ x 14″), and it might be too heavy for backpackers, who might prefer one of the top-rated backpacking pillows.

Therm-a-Rest Compressible Pillow Review

Best Camping Pillow - Therm-a-Rest Compressible Pillow Review
  • Best Budget Camping Pillow

  • Type: compressible

  • Limited lifetime warranty

  • Free shipping on orders over $50

  • Price: $26.95–$29.95

Rating 9.8

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PROS :
  • Eco-friendly materials

  • Machine-washable

  • Best pillow for short camping trips

CONS :
  • Pretty big

  • Can’t be adjusted

Therm-a-Rest is a notable company that offers a cheap camping pillow ideal for short trips in the outdoors. The pillow is made of thick, soft polyester and filled with upcycled foam. That said, you can pick from any of the seven colors offered, and it comes in three sizes, small (16″ x 12″), medium (18″ x 14″), and large (23″ x 16″).

The Therm-a-Rest pillow is compressible, so it won’t take up much space when you pack it in your bag. You just need to roll it and tuck it. What’s more, it’s extremely easy to use. Uncompressing it takes only a few seconds. However, since it isn’t a self-inflating camping pillow, you won’t be able to adjust it perfectly. 

Nevertheless, side and back sleepers should feel comfortable enough since the pillow offers sufficient support. 

The biggest downside to this pillow is that it’s bigger than other camping pillows, so we wouldn’t advise you to take it on longer trips. Despite this small inconvenience, the pillow is actually very soft and cozy. So if you’re on a budget and looking for cheap camping pillows, Therm-a-Rest should hit the spot.

Sea to Summit Aeros Down Pillow Review

Best Camping Pillow - Sea to Summit Aeros Down Pillow Review
  • Best Lightweight Camping Pillow

  • Type: Inflatable, down

  • Lifetime warranty

  • Free shipping

  • Price: $59.95–$84.95

PROS :
  • Ultralight

  • Lock-on system that prevents sliding

  • Multifunctional valve for easy inflation and deflation

CONS :
  • Not machine-washable

If you’re a regular backpacker looking for a great down pillow that’s pocket-sized and, most importantly, comfortable, Sea to Summit is an excellent choice. 

The Aeros Down is the best ultralight camping pillow that’s also soft. Its cover is made of a thin 10-denier cushion top that comes in two colors: grey and lime. Moreover, you can choose the size that suits you the most, regular (13.4″ x 9.4″ x 4.7″), large (16.5″ x 11″ x 4.7″), or deluxe (23″ x 14.9″ x 4.7″).

That said, not only does this pillow have a lock system that will prevent it from sliding off your mat, but it also has a multifunctional valve on the bottom. You just need to blow air into it and adjust it to the firmness that suits you. This is one of the best inflatable pillows for camping that’s ideal for both back and side sleepers.

The biggest downside of this pillow is probably its high cost. But does the price match the value? Absolutely. Not only has this pillow left its competition in the dust when it comes to coziness and lightness, but it also comes with a lifetime warranty and free shipping. You do the math.

Hyperlite Stuff Sack Pillow Review

Best Camping Pillow - Hyperlite Stuff Sack Pillow Review
  • Best Adjustable Sack Pillow

  • Type: Stuff sack

  • One-year warranty

  • Free shipping on orders over $200.00

  • Price: $40.00–$50.00

Rating 9.7

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PROS :
  • Waterproof

  • Adjustable

  • Small size

CONS :
  • You need to bring extra clothing

  • It traps heat inside

As important as it is to have a nice, comfy mattress or even an adjustable bed in your bedroom, you can’t underestimate the importance of a pillow. If you also want to achieve equally sweet dreams during your outdoor adventures, begin with good, soft support in your pillow.

Many camping pillow reviews mention Hyperlite on their “best of” lists, and for good reason. This waterproof sack pillow has a nice touch of fleece when you sink your head into it. What’s more, it comes in two sizes: small (10″ x 14″) and large (12″ x 17″). 

With this pillow, you’ll have complete freedom to adjust it the way you want. You just have to unzip it, turn it inside out, and fill it with clothing. You can adjust the firmness and softness by adding or pulling clothing out until you create your ideal pillow.

This versatility makes Hyperlite the best backpack camping pillow for all sleeping positions. 

However, with every pro comes a con or two. As you can imagine, you need to take enough extra clothing with you to be able to fill your pillow, and that can be a big problem if you’re going on long trips and you need that extra space for other essential items. Moreover, the pillow traps heat inside, so be prepared to wash your clothes if you don’t want them to get smelly.

Cocoon Ultralight Air-Core Pillow Review

Best Camping Pillow - Cocoon Ultralight Air-Core Pillow Review
  • Best Two-Sided Pillow

  • Type: Hybrid

  • Free shipping on orders over $50.00

  • Price: $32.95–$40.95

Rating 9.7

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PROS :
  • Removable bladder

  • Unique adjustment valve

  • Best-rated camping pillow with a warm and a cool side

CONS :
  • Too large

  • The cool side is slippery

Cocoon’s Ultralight Air-Core Pillow is, without a doubt, the best travel pillow for car camping since it’s almost as big as the regular pillow you have at home. It comes in two colors, wasabi and light blue, and two sizes (14″ x 18″ and 16″ x 22″).

If you’re a back sleeper who likes your pillow firm and big, the Ultralight Air-Core should be your first pick. That said, there’s one feature that makes this pillow unique: its sophisticated valve. 

If you want to sleep on the most comfortable camping pillow possible, you need to control the firmness and loft, i.e., the amount of air inside. To add in more air, turn the valve to the left. If you need to close the valve, simply turn it to the right.

With two sides to choose from, the Air-Core pillows are the best hybrid camping pillows. In summer, when you need a nice cooling pillow, sleep on the nylon side (blue, green). In winter, when you need your pillow to bring you some warmth, sleep on the microfiber side (gray).

Due to its large size, Cocoon’s Ultralight Air-Core might be the best pillow for hammock camping or car camping. However, it might be too big to fit in the hood of a mummy sleeping bag.

Klymit Luxe Camping Pillow Review

Best Camping Pillow - Klymit Luxe Camping Pillow Review
  • Best for Back Sleepers

  • Type: Inflatable

  • Limited lifetime warranty

  • Standard shipping, free returns

  • Price: $39.95

Rating 9.8

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PROS :
  • The cover can be removed and washed in a machine

  • Adjustable X design controlled by the valve

  • Among the best inflatable camping pillows for neck support

CONS :
  • Heavy

  • Too big for a mummy bag’s hood

Klymit takes the cake thanks to this pillow’s small packaging. In fact, while the inflated pillow looks almost like your regular pillow (22″ x 12.5″ x 5″), when packed, it’s small enough to fit in your pocket (3″ x 7″).

These are the best camping pillows for neck support thanks to their X design. In short, the design will allow your head to sink right in the middle without slipping off. 

Not to mention, it takes only five breaths to inflate the pillow, while the firmness can be adjusted by turning the valve and letting the air out. The cover is removable and it can be washed in a machine.

However, Klymit Luxe isn’t the absolute best inflatable camping pillow on the market because it’s too heavy (6.4 ounces) when compared to other pillows.

Exped Mega Camping Pillow Review

Best Camping Pillow - Exped Mega Camping Pillow Review
  • Best Blow-up Camping Pillow

  • Type: Inflatable

  • Five-year warranty

  • Free shipping on orders over $50.00

  • Price: $49.00

Rating 9.9

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PROS :
  • Adjustable for all sleep positions

  • Soft fleece padding

  • Removable cover

CONS :
  • Too large

  • Deflation is possible only with the deflation pin

Like most air pillows for camping, the Mega Pillow is easy to inflate and deflate (just use the deflation pin when you want to change the firmness). However, what distinguishes it from other inflatable pillows is its softness. In other words, the fleece pillow padding offers a squishy, warm feeling.

The pillow comes in two colors, moss green and ruby red, and it inflates to the size of a traditional pillow (20.9″ x 12.6″). With this in mind, if you’re looking for the best small camping pillows, forget about Mega. As the name suggests, this pillow is big and thick. However, you can attach it to your sleeping mat with the help of three eyelets to make sure it won’t move during the night.

In addition to adjusting the firmness, you can adjust its height as well, making it perfect for your preferred sleeping position. When it comes to washing, simply remove the cover and clean it with a cloth.

Keep in mind, this may not be the very best blow-up camping pillow for ultralight camping trips due to its size.

Sierra Designs Dridown Pillow Review

Best Camping Pillow - Sierra Designs Dridown Pillow Review
  • Best Versatile Pillow

  • Type: Compressible

  • Limited warranty

  • Free shipping in the US

  • Price: $29.95

Rating 9.6

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PROS :
  • Two-in-one design

  • Squashy surface

  • Among the top camping pillows that come in small sizes

CONS :
  • It can get too warm

  • Not the best support

Sierra Designs has one of the top-rated camping pillows on the market thanks to its two-in-one design. In other words, you can sleep on the inner pillow, or you can add your clothing to make the support firmer. What makes it so soft is its polyester taffeta filling. However, this material tends to compress during the night, flattening the pillow.

Then again, the pillow itself is pretty small (12.5″ x 8.5″), and it can fit into any hooded mummy bag or a hammock. It comes in two colors, red and blue, and there’s no setup needed. To get the best and lightest camping pillow, remove the inner pillow based on your needs. 

While side sleepers might find the pillow too small, stomach sleepers should get the most benefits, from warmth to snugness. 

However, due to its lower loft, don’t expect it to help you with your snoring. Furthermore, the cover retains heat, so it won’t be a good option for sleepers who prefer a cool surface.

Big Agnes Q-Core Deluxe Pillow Review

Best Camping Pillow - Big Agnes Q-Core Deluxe Pillow Review
  • Best Pierce-Resistant Material

  • Type: Inflatable

  • Limited lifetime warranty

  • Orders of $50.00 or more ship for free

  • Price: $49.95

Rating 9.6

Get the Best Deal
PROS :
  • Among the best pillows for hammock camping

  • Resistant to piercing

  • Provides heat and coziness

CONS :
  • Only one size

Big Agnes has created nearly the best inflatable pillow for camping that’s resistant to piercing. The stretch nylon itself has a built-in technology that provides heat and coziness. Moreover, the pillow can be easily adjusted. Just use the micro release button.

That said, Big Agnes has a significant weight reduction function. In other words, the small l-beams on the pillow keep your head stable. On top of that, the pillow is quite large (20″ x 14″ x 4.75″). 

Inflation is easy and deflation is super fast. According to reliable inflatable camping pillow reviews, Big Agnes has nearly the best pillow for camping and backpacking. Although its size might not fit into a hooded mummy bag, it will be a great addition to your hammock.

TETON Sports ComfortLite Self Inflating Pillow Review

Best Camping Pillow - TETON Sports ComfortLite Self Inflating Pillow Review
  • Best Inflatable Camping Pillow

  • Type: Self-inflatable

  • Lifetime warranty

  • Free shipping on orders over $49.00

  • Price: $18.99

Rating 9.8

Get the Best Deal
PROS :
  • Fast self-inflation

  • Microfiber top

  • Non-slip bottom

CONS :
  • Some people might find it too small

When it comes to finding the best camping pillow, reviews note that TETON Sports has a unique self-inflating pillow ideal for all sorts of traveling and camping. To inflate it, you need to turn the valve to get your desired level of firmness and loft (3″–7″ high). That said, its deflation takes only a few seconds.

The top of this pillow is made of microfiber. It feels soft and warm, but it doesn’t overheat, and it will absorb sweat. What’s more, with the help of the non-slip bottom, this small (18″ x 10″) pillow won’t slide off your sleeping bag.

On the downside, when we make a camping pillow comparison, TETON Sports might be a bit too small for some campers.

How to Choose the Best Camping Pillow

– Buyer’s Guide –

As important as it is to plan your trip, getting the right or wrong equipment can make your next adventure either wonderfully memorable or a total nightmare. When it comes to choosing the right pillow, pay attention to the following criteria: 

  • Type of pillow
  • Your sleeping style
  • Durability
  • Its weight and size 
  • Price

The Type of Camping Pillow

Camping pillows come in four different types:

  • Stuff sack pillows
  • Compressible pillows 
  • Inflatable pillows 
  • Hybrid pillows 

What’s the main difference, and how do you pick the best camping pillow? Let’s find out!

Stuff Sack Pillows

These pillows are usually ultralight, and as the name suggests, they look like sacks that need to be stuffed with clothing. So when it comes to packing, you can put them in any compartment of your backpack or even carry them in your pocket. However, you need to take enough extra clothing with you, which might be a problem if you’re planning a long trip.

The pillows are comfortable, and you can choose the right firmness and thickness by adding more or less clothing. Like we already mentioned in this camping pillow review, pillow sacks trap heat inside, so your clothing might get wet and smelly.

Inflatable Pillows

These pillows are incredibly light. To use them, you need to fill them with air (usually 4–5 breaths are enough). You can choose the right firmness by adding or releasing more air. Just turn the air valve until you get the preferred fit.

When it comes to softness, these pillows are not as comfortable as other types of pillows, and they tend to slide off your sleeping bag. However, they’ll provide the best support for your neck.

Compressible Pillows

A compressible pillow is probably the most comfortable camping pillow, and it’s small enough to fit any backpack. However, the pillow becomes pretty big and heavy when you decompress it. 

This type is as close as it gets to your regular bedroom pillow in size and material. You’ll get the right comfort and coziness, and the filling typically is foam, feathers, or fibers. 

Hybrid Pillows

What do you get if you combine compressible and inflatable pillows? Hybrid pillows. These pillows are filled with air and foam, making them comfortable and supportive. However, since they’re made of various materials, they tend to be heavy and big.

Sleeping Style

How do you choose the best camping pillows based on your sleeping position?

Side sleepers should choose a pillow that provides great neck and shoulder support. The ideal option here would be a thick pillow.

Stomach sleepers don’t need much support, so they’ll find that flat and thin pillows work best.

Back sleepers will need a medium-firm pillow to keep their spine aligned.

Durability

You want your pillow to follow you to the farthest places on Earth, so make sure it has long durability. For this reason, you need to pay attention to the materials. 

You probably noticed that we mentioned various pillow materials in our best camping pillow review. This is important because some materials have longer durability (like polyester), and some won’t be able to survive rougher conditions (like plastic). 

Weight and Size 

If you’re a backpacker who packs light, choose ultralight pillows (inflatable). If you plan to go on a car camping trip, you can go with any size and weight you prefer (hybrid or compressible). 

Hammock sleepers could choose bigger pillows; however, if you prefer to sleep in a hooded mummy bag, you should go with a smaller pillow.

Price

Last but not least, you need to consider your budget. The average price of most top-rated camping pillows is $30–$50. However, if you want to get better quality, be prepared to shell out a few extra bucks. 

The least expensive types of pillows are compressible and inflatable, while hybrid and down pillows hold the highest prices.

Wrapping Up

During these challenging times, the best thing you can do is plan a camping trip and visit some of your country’s best natural wonders. Clear your head and get inspired. Take your dog, make a barbecue, read good books, and enjoy all of Mother Nature’s gifts. 

For this reason, we created our camping pillow reviews as guidance to help you find the best soft support that will help you travel far and dream big.

Have a great and safe journey!

FAQs

Do you need a camping pillow?

The main gear that every camper should possess is a tent, a sleeping bag or hammock, and a pillow. On the one hand, you can take your bedroom pillow with you. However, you’ll probably have problems packing due to its size. 

Camping pillows, on the other hand, will provide you with more than enough support and coziness. Moreover, they’re smaller in size and can be compressed, inflated, or packed into a sack, making them small enough to fit in your backpack easily. 

What kind of pillow should I use for camping?

Like we mentioned before, there are four different types of camping pillows: inflatable, compressible, stuff sack, and hybrid. Each pillow has its pros and cons. So which to choose? 

First, you should consider the weight and the size of your pillow and your travel preferences (car camping, backpacking, etc.). Secondly, you should consider your preferred sleeping position. And lastly, you need to think about your budget. Are you ready to go that extra mile and pay more to get the best quality, or will you be satisfied with a mediocre, cheaper pillow? 

What is the best camping pillow?

The best camping pillow needs to be comfortable, soft, adjustable, and supportive. We are big fans of Nemo’s Fillo King because we love its versatility, material, and softness.

Moreover, this pillow is a hybrid (a combination of an inflatable and compressible pillow), so you’ll get the best of each type. And finally, if you’re a side sleeper, this “king of the hill” option should be your first choice.

Are inflatable camping pillows comfortable?

Inflatable camping pillows aren’t known to be the most comfortable pillows. However, they’re incredibly light and small when packed. Inflatable pillows should be your first choice if you’re planning a long trip, and you need to pack light.

With that in mind, they’re easy to use. Just breathe into the pillow to inflate it, and deflate it with the help of the valve. That said, some pillows are self-inflating, so you won’t even have to puff and puff. Although this might not be the best camping pillow for back and stomach sleepers, it’s ideal for side sleepers since it provides the best support.