5 Of The Best Camping Pillows

camping pillows

Upgrade your camping experience with the best camping pillows!

Planning and preparing for your camping takes a lot of mental and physical energy. How much more when you trek to your campsite? It’s no wonder you will be too exhausted at the end of the day that all you want is a good night sleep.

A quality sleep means comfortable head support. You don’t want to toss and turn around all night in the woods because of an uncomfortable pillow; hoping sleep would finally come to you. That’s why a quality camping pillow is crucial for every camper. But what camping pillow suits you best?

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Camping Pillow Buying Guide


You already have your pack full of stuff. Tents, clothing, cooking utensils; the list goes on. Your camping pillow should not add much weight to be an issue. Thankfully, most camping pillows weigh less than 50 grams. That’s not a lot but every gram counts when it’s the weight you are carrying we are talking about.


Comfort should be a top priority when choosing a camping pillow. It’s better to go bareback than to have an uncomfortable pillow keeping you up all night. Ensure that you choose a camping pillow that eases your body and enhances your comfort while you sleep.


Consider the shape of your pillow if you toss and turn during your sleep. Opt for an ergonomically designed pillow to keep your head in place throughout the night. But if you’re not, a simple rectangle camping pillow would be enough.


Every space in your backpack matters. You want your camping tools to be as small and packable it can be. Make sure that your camping pillow is deflatable. Other camping pillows don’t deflate but can be compressed and placed into a packing cube.


Worry not as most camping pillows available in the market are made of good quality materials.  As long as you buy from reputable brands and, of course, take proper care of them, your camping pillow will last you a lifetime.

Types of Camping Pillows

Camping pillows have three basic types: inflatable, compressible and the hybrid.


Inflatable camping pillows are filled with air. They are the lightest among the three types. They also have the smallest packed size making it very convenient for travel. To use an inflatable camping pillow, blow in air through the valve. Their downside, however, is that they’re not that comfortable at all. As it’s made of plastic, shifting your head on them produces noise. With all these factors considered, inflatable pillows are recommended for multi-day backpacking travels.


Compressible pillows come closest to pillows we use in our bedrooms. They are filled with foams, synthetic fibers, or down feathers. Using one is easy. You only need to take them out of their compression sacks. Compared to inflatable pillows, compressible camping pillows are more comfortable. Although they are compressible, the pillows are heavier and will take up more space in your pack. They are therefore recommended for overnight or short travels only.


Hybrid pillows take camping pillows to another level. It combines the pros of both the inflatable and compressible pillows. They have a compressible top for comfortable head support and an inflatable bottom to add volume. Size-wise, they are between the inflatable and compressible size. Hybrid camping pillows are recommended for either long or short travels.

5 Best Camping Pillows

Therm-a-Rest Compressible Travel Pillow

Therm-a-Rest is perfect for air travel, car camping, backpacking or any kind of travel. Its cover is made of brushed polyester giving you optimum comfort when brushed against your skin. It is also eco-friendly as its lofty urethane fill is an upcycled product of Therm-a-Rest mattresses.

A drawstring and cord lock keeps the pillow compressed when not in use. When left out, it expands into a comfortable, four-inch thick pillow.

The pillow also comes in eight different designs and four sizes to cater to your preferences.


  • Compressible
  • Washing machine washable
  • Easy to clean


  • Too heavy for some
  • Not durable

Klymit Inflatable Camping Pillow

Perfect for wild sleepers, this camping pillow from Klymit features a self-centering design that helps center and stabilizes your head to maintain comfortable contact with the pillow’s surface.

This is also great outdoors as it has a durable design. Its top is made of 30D polyester and its bottom of 75D polyester, making it resistant to punctures and abrasion.

Its inflatable and compact design and weight makes it popular for backpackers. It weighs only 1.95 ounces and packs to a compact size of 4.5” x 2.5” x 1”.


  • Lightweight
  • Compact and inflatable size
  • Durable
  • Adjustable height
  • Inflates easily


  • Not ideal for stomach and side sleepers

TETON Sports ComfortLite Self-Inflating Pillow

You won’t tire yourself blowing into this pillow as the Teton Sports Comfortlite comes with a self-inflating feature. Just twist its valve and watch as it fills up slowly into its full size or to a firmness you prefer. The non-slip bottom will also keep the pillow in place even if you toss and turn during your sleep.

This pillow is convenient for travel as it packs down tightly to a 13×3.5×3.5 inch size and only weighs 12 ounces. It also comes in a nylon stuff sack with shoulder straps for added comfort while carrying.


  • Self-inflating
  • Non-slip bottom
  • Easy to clean
  • Adjustable to preferred firmness


  • Not that comfortable
  • Not durable according to some users

Sea to Summit Aeros Pillow

This pillow weighs only 2.8 ounces so it is a great companion for any type of travel. The outer shell is made up of 50D polyester knit, soft for comfort but still durable. Its synthetic fill and TPU bladder give additional comfort and wicks away perspiration. The pillow comes in a shape perfect to cradle your head and fit around your shoulder so it’s perfect when you sleep upright in a plane or car.


  • Durable
  • Soft and comfortable top material
  • With TPU bladder that wicks away sweat
  • Inflates and deflates quickly


  • Unrepairable when punctured

EXPED Ultralight Pillow

This pillow is the lightest on our list with its 1.6 ounces weight and packs to the smallest volume of 4.7” x 2”. Just like the Klymit pillow, this EXPED pillow has an anti-slip GripSkin feature; making it stay put throughout the night even if you are a wild sleeper. The pillow also has indentions in the middle to give your head added comfort.  

You can easily inflate the pillow through the sturdy flat valve and deflate it easily with the use of the deflation pin that comes with it.


  • Adjustable height
  • GripSkin anti-slip coating
  • Sturdy flat valve
  • Lightweight


  • Might not be comfortable for some people    


As with your bedroom pillow, buying a camping pillow in terms of comfort is no different. It’s best to visit a shop to see and feel and possibly try using the camping pillow personally. We all have different taste and preferences so what might be comfortable for us is not comfortable for you.  

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