A bed and night table.

If you’re lucky, your head rests six to eight hours every night on a pillow. But what’s your pillow made of?

Knowing all your eco-options can help you rest easy.

Most pillows are made from synthetic materials like petroleum-based polyester.

Natural fabrics and fibres are better because they won’t off-gas. This could include: down, kapok, buckwheat and organic wool.

Here are a few options you could consider for your next eco pillow purchase:

Down pillows

Some down and feathers used to make pillows, comforters and jackets are harvested from live birds and birds that have been force fed. And some down pillows contain feathers sterilized with formaldehyde.

Your down pillow tag might bear the Downmark® brand of The Down Association of Canada (a non-profit) and says:

“Down and feathers are normally harvested from goose and duck farms as a by-product of the poultry industry. Birds are not raised for their down, but rather for their meat — just as leather is a by-product of the beef industry.”

Of course, these labels don’t say anything about sustainable or humanely raised fowl.

Kapok pillows

Silky threads from the flower seeds of the kapok tree (Ceiba pentandra) can be harvested without chopping down the trees. These pillows are firmer than down or wool options and are apparently great for people who sleep on their backs.

Buckwheat pillows

Just like it sounds — full of buckwheat hulls! Usually these are made with a zipper hulls can be removed to adjust loftiness.

Organic wool pillows

Naturally resistant to dust mites and mildew, just be careful when cleaning as they are best spot-cleaned.

Natural rubber pillows

Natural rubber is renewable and biodegradable.

Organic cotton pillows

Many pillows mentioned above come with organic cotton covers. But some pillows are made from 100 per cent organic cotton.