There are two kinds of pillows we stock in our Airbnbs: pillows for sleeping and pillows for design. The best sleeping pillows Kate and I have used are the Downluxe down alternative pillows for sleeping. And the best design pillows are completely dependent on the look and feel of your home.
I’m going to recall some of our lessons learned and share some of the products we’ve used and others that we are looking to buy when we open our next Airbnb.
Pillow-related Lessons Learned From Our Airbnbs
Pillows are one of those things that you just seem to need a lot of as an Airbnb host. We put pillows on our couches, and of course pillows on our beds, but we also use decorative pillows on our beds to make our homes feel more luxurious.
We usually have two pillows on each bed for our guests to sleep on, but then we often have 2 to 4 more pillows on each bed that are mostly for decoration.
It didn’t make sense to me until I saw it, but one of my first lessons as a host is that decorating your beds makes a noticeable difference. It just makes your listing more inviting and expensive, meaning guests be more likely to book and will pay more to stay with you.
Another lesson has been to mostly avoid true down pillows. We mostly use pillows filled with alternative down.
The two biggest reasons are that the feathers inevitably end up getting out of the pillow (which means you have to regularly clean them up) and some people have allergies to down. We do have some down pillows in our listings, but they are all decorative.
Pillows have occasionally disappeared
You pick up lots of little things the longer you host. We had a guest stay not too long ago who had a friend book for them.
There was no drama around their stay, but when Kate went to clean after they left, she found that one of the pillows from our King bed was missing.
Related: Best bed size to use in your Airbnb.
We were able to get reimbursed for the missing pillow, but it took some time to replace it. It was fortunate that we keep extra pillows in our listings, because otherwise we would have been rushing around trying to get a new pillow in time for our next guests.
We often have guests check out at 11am and new guests check in 3pm that same day. It would be quite stressful to clean and buy new pillows in that time frame.
That’s my last lesson. Keep some extra pillows in the house.
Pillows For Sleeping On
You’ll want some pillows in your listing specifically for sleeping. You’ll want these pillows to be comfortable and durable.
Our Favorite: Downluxe Down Alternative Pillows
I can confidently recommend these pillows because we use them in our Airbnbs. They are fluffy and they hold their shape for at least a year.
The pillows are machine washable and they are filled with a bamboo and polyester blend down alternative.
I can’t remember a guest ever commenting about our pillows, good or bad, so take that for what you want. Either way, we will keep buying them because they are a good deal and they get the job done.
Best Reviewed: Beckham Hotel Gel Pillow
We haven’t personally tested the Beckham Hotel Gel Pillow in any of our Airbnbs, but it has rave reviews.It should hold up to the demands of a short term rental and is machine washable.
What made me recommend this pillow over others is that nearly every review I read talked about how comfortable the pillow is. Guests love a comfortable bed and they won’t be shy to talk about that in their reviews.
Hypoallergic is always a plus, too. I’ll definitely be looking at the Beckham Hotel Gel Pillow next time we need replacements.
Best Deal: Utopia Bedding Gusseted Pillow
The Utopia gusseted pillows are a more economical choice for your listing. The stripe on these pillows looks a bit unusual, but it’s intended to improve the pillow’s durability. Guests can be hard on just about everything inside your listing, so a little extra durability is always a good idea.
These may not be quite as comfortable as the other options, but they are well worth the lower cost.
Pillows For Design
Kate has shown time and time again when designing our Airbnb spaces that pillows can add so much character to the space. Here are some ideas that she put together for me.
These inserts will hold their shape well and fit standard insert cover sizes. You shouldn’t need a lot from an insert. These pillows will not get a lot of use, so it’s not worth paying for any extras. Here are a couple options.
Utopia Bedding inserts
- Pack of 4
- Polycotton filled with polyester
- Available in 7 sizes (12 x 12, 12 x 20, 14 x 14, 16 x 16, 18 x 18, 20 x 20, 22 x 22)
The covers are where you really need to put on your designer glasses. In our listings you might find some of these on our beds, couches or chairs. Here are some ideas for you that Kate put together. You can click on any of these images to see the covers on Amazon.
I’m not a design expert, but Kate is. And we’ve seen time and time again how much of a difference good design makes in an Airbnb. If you feel like your space is missing something, then maybe you need pillows!
Airbnb hosts make dozens of decisions as they create their space. I wouldn’t consider pillows among the most important of those decisions, but a bad pillow can ruin you guest’s experience.
We’ve had great results from the Downluxe down alternative pillows. And when looking for throw pillows to decorate your home, don’t worry too much about durability.