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On paper, Nest Bedding’s Easy Breather seems like an ideal pillow. Its soft, shredded memory foam makes the pillow adjustable, its moisture-wicking fabric keeps things cool, and its 30-day return policy lets you try before you buy. On top of that, the Easy Breather earns almost universal praise online: Wirecutter crowned it the best bed pillow for back- and side-sleepers and consumers rave about its cloud-like comfort. But despite its accolades, there are some serious issues that plague the hyped-up pillow.

The Easy Breather: A Detailed Description

The Easy Breather is a shredded memory foam pillow that comes in four configurations (from $107 to $131), including three sizes and a model for side sleepers. As a cheapskate, I ordered the standard option for $107, which promptly shipped for free in a small rectangular box.

The Exterior

The glossy, stippled fabric on the outside of the pillow — a mixture of polyester, spandex, and Nest’s proprietary material Icecore — feels quite cool and soft to the touch. And when it comes to wicking away moisture, the Easy Breather lives up to its name.

The Interior

But what separates the Easy Breather from the competition is its shredded fill. Nest intentionally overstuffs the pillow, with the idea that consumers can remove foam to suit their preferences. Unfortunately, the dinky bag they include for excess fill only fits a handful of foam, which, given how plump Nest’s pillow comes, is far too small.

Sleeping on the Easy Breather

More importantly, however, the Easy Breather just isn’t comfortable. The first night I slept with the pillow, I woke up with neck pain, so I took out more foam. While reducing the loft improved the experience, I continued to find Nest’s shredded memory foam uncomfortable, no matter how much cubed foam I ripped out.

The problem is that the pillow is just too damn supportive, even for a side and back sleeper like me. Unlike normal memory foam, which molds to your head and cradles your neck, the Easy Breather had very little give. It felt like I was sleeping on an oversized and overstuffed throw pillow. And when I asked my girlfriend to try the pillow, she had a similar assessment.

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Nest Easy Breather PillowPhoto credit: Cheapism / Maxwell Shukuya

Why You Shouldn’t Buy the Easy Breather

Nest advertises that 74% of customers buy a second Easy Breather. As you can probably tell, I belong to the other 26%, largely because:

  • It’s Expensive: I’m a penny pincher, so $100 for a pillow seems like a lot of money, and in my experience, you can get a long-lasting, high-quality pillow for far less.

  • It’s Uncomfortable: If you’re a stomach sleeper or prefer softer memory foam, I’d avoid the Easy Breather. To me, it feels like sleeping on a wedge of hard foam.

  • It’s Prone to Bandwagoning: In the world of product reviews, there’s a bit of a snowball effect. For example, if one well-respected publisher puts out a positive review of the Easy Breather, then other publishers feel the need to try it. Publishers are also incentivized to add oft-discussed products like the Easy Breather to their “Best Of” lists for search engine optimization purposes. That’s not to say that the Easy Breather is completely undeserving of praise, only that there might be other variables that have led to its popularity.

Why You Might Still Want the Easy Breather

I realize I might sound like a contrarian here, but the truth is that I sleep far better on this random pillow I bought from Amazon than on Nest’s crown jewel. That said, people are pretty particular about sleep, so I don’t want to completely dissuade curious consumers, especially those who might want a supportive pillow. Plus, there are a lot of reasons why Nest’s pillow is worth trying, such as:

  • It’s Adjustable: Even though it never felt right for me, it’s a nice feature that the pillow is fully adjustable.

  • It’s Breathable: If you run hot at night, then you’ll love the Easy Breather’s exterior fabric, which will keep you from turning your pillow over.

Final Thoughts

The Easy Breather pillow doesn't live up to the hype. Is it horrible? No. But if you're going to pay $100 for a pillow, it better be perfect, and the Easy Breather is just too uncomfortable for me to recommend. Nevertheless, it's got enough going for it — a solid warranty, breathability, adjustability, and a 30-day trial period — that it might be worth trying if you don't mind a springy, ultra-supportive pillow.

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