The 9 Best Cooling Pillowcases for Sweat-Free Nights
If you constantly find yourself feeling hot, sweating, or flipping your pillow to the cold side, it may be time to consider a cooling pillowcase. "Feeling too hot or too cold will disrupt sleep, and this can be a major challenge for people," says Dr. Pamela Peeke, M.D., Chief Medical Officer at Embr Labs.
To determine the best cooling pillowcases, we spent hours researching popular options, considering materials, care instructions, at-home trial period, and style. We also paid attention to each product's cooling method, noting whether a pillowcase was simply breathable or genuinely cooling. We also consulted three experts—Dr. Pamela Peeke; Patrick Deighan, director of e-commerce and marketing for Fieldsheer; and Dr. Ellen Vora, a sleep and emotional health expert—on how cooling pillowcases work and what to consider when buying them.
Our top pick, the Coop Home Goods Cool Side Pillowcase, is a genuinely cooling pillowcase you can test for months before making a commitment, thanks to its 100-day trial period.
Here are the best cooling pillowcases for cooler, more comfortable nights.
Our Top Picks
- Best Overall Cooling Pillowcase: Coop Home Goods Cool Side Pillowcase
- Best Budget Cooling Pillowcase: Elegear Cooling Pillowcase Set
- Best Splurge Cooling Pillowcase: Boll & Branch Percale Hemmed Pillowcase Set
- Best Organic Cooling Pillowcase: Coyuchi Organic Crinkled Percale Pillowcases
- Best Linen Cooling Pillowcase: Parachute Linen Pillowcase Set
- Best Eucalyptus Cooling Pillowcase: Sijo Eucalyptus Pillowcase Set
- Best Bamboo Cooling Pillowcase: Ettitude Signature Sateen Pillowcase Set
- Best Silk Cooling Pillowcase: Brooklinen Mulberry Silk Pillowcase
- Best Pillowcase with Cooling Technology: Sleep Number True Temp Pillowcase Set
Best Overall Cooling Pillowcase: Coop Home Goods Cool Side Pillowcase
Best Budget Cooling Pillowcase: Elegear Cooling Pillowcase Set
Best Splurge Cooling Pillowcase: Boll & Branch Percale Hemmed Pillowcase Set
Best Organic Cooling Pillowcase: Coyuchi Organic Crinkled Percale Pillowcase Set
Best Linen Cooling Pillowcase: Parachute Linen Pillowcase Set
Best Eucalyptus Cooling Pillowcase: Sijo Eucalyptus Pillowcase Set
Best Bamboo Cooling Pillowcase: Ettitude Signature Sateen Pillowcase Set
Best Silk Cooling Pillowcase: Brooklinen Mulberry Silk Pillowcase
Best Pillowcase with Cooling Technology: Sleep Number True Temp Pillowcase Set
Coop Home Good's Cool Side Pillowcase earned our top spot for two key reasons. First, it's genuinely cooling—not merely breathable. Made from the brand's Lulltra Cool fabric, the dual-sided pillowcase will wick away heat to keep you cool all night long. Second, it's backed by a 100-day trial period, so you have three months to make sure the pillowcase works for you before you have to commit to it.
How to Shop for Cooling Pillowcases
Natural materials like cotton, linen, and plant-based fibers tend to be considered cooling thanks to their inherent breathability and lighter weight. When it comes to cotton, you'll want to be sure you're sticking with a percale weave, which is crisp and cool to the touch. Although synthetic materials like polyester are generally considered to be heat-trapping, performance synthetics are equipped with heat-wicking technology that will cool you while you sleep. There are tradeoffs with each of these materials, so focus on finding the combination of comfort, breathability, cooling capability, and value that best meets your needs.
To be truly useful, a cooling pillowcase can't just be comfortable—it also needs to suit your bed. So as you shop, pay attention to pillowcase size, color, print, and style. Most cooling pillowcases come in two basic sizes (standard/queen and king), and many are available in multiple colors and prints to suit whatever bedding you already have. If you have a preference for closure style, like side envelope or back envelope, be sure to note that as well. (Some brands even let you choose what kind of closure you want when you buy your pillowcase.)
If you plan to sleep on your cooling pillowcase every night, you probably want it to be convenient to clean. After all, pillowcases should be cleaned on a weekly basis, so if you're low on time, a weekly hand-washing session may not be on the menu. Many cooling pillowcases are machine washer- and dryer-friendly, but some aren't—so be sure to set expectations before buying. And take note of other care instructions, as some pillowcases shouldn't be paired with dryer balls, others need to be ironed to avoid wrinkles, and so on.
Comfort is a matter of personal preference, so it's hard to tell how much you'll like a pillowcase until you get the chance to sleep on it. Thankfully, many cooling pillowcases are backed by generous trial periods and return policies. These policies give you anywhere from 30–365 days to sleep on a cooling pillowcase before you actually have to commit to it, making the process of finding a great pillowcase much easier.
Questions You Might Ask
What's the best cooling material for a pillowcase?
When considering materials for cooling pillowcases, you're often weighing cooling capability against breathability, so it's tough to say which material is the coolest. "Traditional materials, like cotton, silk, and satin, [are] the least cooling but are highly breathable," Deighan says. "Some synthetics, like microfiber, offer the highest level of cooling but limit breathability, so heat may get trapped." What Deighan calls "semi-natural" materials, like bamboo-based lyocell and eucalyptus-based lyocell, fall somewhere in the middle—offering some amount of cooling and some breathability.
Do cooling pillowcases really work?
Cooling pillowcases can be effective. But remember, cooling pillowcases fall into two categories: breathable pillowcases and genuinely cooling pillowcases. "Cooling textiles absorb moisture, spreading it across the fabric and allowing it to evaporate," says Dr. Vora. Meanwhile, breathable pillowcases encourage airflow.
If a cooling pillowcase is made from a heat-wicking fabric or equipped with cooling technology, it may genuinely cool you. If it's simply made from a breathable material—like cotton, linen, or satin—it may cool you less directly, by keeping heat from getting trapped in your bed. Keep in mind, though, that a pillowcase won't do much if your pillow is exceptionally heat-trapping or your room is at a higher temperature. There isn't one single fix for sleeping hot, so you might need to make a few adjustments in order to sleep more comfortably.
Does thread count matter for cooling pillowcases?
Thread count is often used as a quality indicator for pillowcases, but it's a misleading measurement. In fact, you want a lower thread count, especially if you sleep hot. Thread count is the number of threads woven into a square inch of fabric, so a lower thread count results in more breathability. In general, you want to stick with bedding that has a thread count between 200-400, as a higher thread count means the brand has had to do some magic in order to get the number that high.
Take Our Word for It
This article was written by Lindsey Lanquist, a contributing writer for Real Simple with seven years of experience writing lifestyle content. To create this guide, Lindsey spent hours researching highly rated cooling pillowcases. For expert advice on how cooling pillowcases work and what to consider when buying them, she turned to Dr. Pamela Peeke, a physician and scientist, Patrick Deighan, director of e-commerce and marketing for Fieldsheer, and Dr. Ellen Vora, a sleep expert.