Pillows made of one-hundred percent feathers are heavier than down and need to be fluffed up nightly. Light and soft down feather pillows need no fluffing because they retain their shape for years. The reason is a simple one. A feather pillow is filled with the larger feathers that are seen when looking at a goose. These have longer and harder spines in them, which makes them flatten during the night.
Down feathers are the ones that are located under the large feathers closer to the body of the goose. These clusters are what keeps the animal warm. To do that, the clusters naturally expand to their full size after they have been wet, pushed together, or flattened by an impact. Clusters do the same thing in the pillow. Whether the pillow has been under a head, supporting the knees, or behind the back all night, it will quickly go back to the original shape once the pressure is gone.
The way to measure the quality of a down feather pillow is to note the fill power number assigned to it on the package or in the product description if buying online. A fill power of 850 is the highest quality available. That pillow will regain original shape in a matter of a few seconds. A 750-fill power rating will regain shape a bit slower, and a 650-fill power one will take close to thirty-seconds to bounce back from pressure.
Select Goose Down
There are pillows made of duck down but will have smaller clusters and not last as long as those made of goose down. There also tends to be fewer odor problems with goose down pillows. That means the goose down will not need to be exposed to low heat in the dryer as often to freshen it up.
The initial price of a down pillow will be higher than department store pillows that cost eight or ten-dollars but is more cost-effective because it will not need to be replaced for years. A pillow purchased from an established company will have a ten-year guarantee. The price of that one pillow will be the only money spend on pillows for a decade or more.