Therm-a-Rest Compressible Travel Pillow

Last updated date: August 30, 2019

DWYM Score
8.3

Therm-a-Rest Compressible Travel Pillow

Why Trust The DWYM Score?

DWYM is your trusted product review source. Along with our in-house experts, our team analyzes thousands of product reviews from the most trusted websites. We then create one easy-to-understand score. Learn more.

Look for the DWYM seal for products that are the best in the category.

We looked at the top Travel Pillows and dug through the reviews from some of the most popular review sites. Through this analysis, we've determined the best Travel Pillow you should buy.

Overall Take

In our analysis of 184 expert reviews, the Therm-a-Rest Therm-a-Rest Compressible Travel Pillow placed 7th when we looked at the top 10 products in the category. For the full ranking, see below.

Editor's Note May 28, 2020:
Checkout The Best Travel Pillow for a detailed review of all the top travel pillows.

Expert Summarized Score
8.4
12 expert reviews
User Summarized Score
8.3
2,514 user reviews
Our Favorite Video Reviews
What experts liked
Durable fabric that resist scratches and stains in case of a spill or accident.
- BestReviews
July 1, 2019 | Full review
The lightweight rectangular pillow compresses down for packing and, when the cord lock is released, it springs into a soft 10.2-centimetre-thick (4-inch-thick) pillow.
- Road Affair
July 28, 2018 | Full review
This model does offer incredible simplicity. We like that the stuff sack is built into the design of the pillow. Just roll the pillow up, tuck it into the lip of the pillowcase, and pull the drawstring tight. It also fits snug in every mummy sleeping bag hood we tested it with and didn't move around much in our sleep.
- Outdoor Gear Lab
Wow!!!! This is an amazing pillow!I have now had this for a while, I got it to replace a down REI brand pillow that I thought was neat, but this one seriously blows it out of the water!!! It's perfect for car camping, day trips, overnighters and I say backpacking too (because I'm comfort driven)
- Trailspace
I always like smart design work, and I think it really shows that the company did its research before manufacturing the pillow. Speaking of design, you have a pretty nice selection of colors and patterns to choose from. I went with the classic “denim” color model, but you can choose between denim, poppy, “night sky,” “indigo dot,” and “mosaic.”
- Armchair Empire
This measures at exactly about 42 by 67 centimeters. The impressive thing about it is that it gives you the feeling of being at the comforts of your home.
- The Z9
July 7, 2019 | Full review
At its maximum loft, the pillow feels like the perfect size for travel. It’s larger than the pillow offerings on most airplanes but noticeably smaller than a standard-size pillow (which means you won’t be bumping your neighbor).
- Mattress Clarity
August 30, 2017 | Full review
It is capable of a loft of four inches when unfolded giving it the ability to adequately support your head, neck, and shoulders as you sleep. The cover is made from brushed polyester that adds to its comfort. Comfort is a key consideration whenever one is shopping for a camping pillow.
- Bedding Pal
The Therm-a-Rest compressible feels the most like a regular pillow and offers excellent comfort for a decent price.
- Compare Outdoor Gear
Therm-a-Rest offers sizes S-XL so you can be sure to get the best size for your application. As well as camping, these would be perfect for travel on a plane, train, or road tripping with the family. They are so similar to home pillows, but can take up far less space when packed when you need it most.
- Adventure Rig
June 2, 2017 | Full review
The foam can expand to attain a big pillow or compress to achieve a small-sized pad.
- Best Pillow Sleepers
September 18, 2018 | Full review
What experts didn't like
Traditional design won't support the neck and head from moving while sleeping.
- BestReviews
July 1, 2019 | Full review
It's heavy.
- Outdoor Gear Lab
However, more than a few people ended up with a shredded cover and the foam pieces spilling out all over the place during the initial washing and drying of the pillow.
- Armchair Empire
Sometimes looks bumpy and lumpy.
- The Z9
July 7, 2019 | Full review
I did not like that it didn't have a way for me to attach it to a carry-on and I didn't love how lumpy the pillow got after a lot of use.
- Mattress Clarity
August 30, 2017 | Full review
Some users found that the fabric tore easily while washing and compressing.
- Bedding Pal
It weighs roughly the same as the Nemo Fillo, but it’s packed size is almost twice as big.
- Compare Outdoor Gear
Not the smallest, most packable pillow out there but for the comfort it is a trade-off
- Adventure Rig
June 2, 2017 | Full review
According to some users, the pillow lack durability
- Best Pillow Sleepers
September 18, 2018 | Full review

From The Manufacturer

The Therm-a-Rest Compressible Travel Pillow is a true travel essential. Ideal for anyone seeking sleep and comfort on-the-go, it offers all the support of home bedding in a small, convenient, and lightweight package for camping, plane travel, car trips, backpacking, trekking, and festivals. Easily compressible for packing into a backpack, duffel, suitcase, or tote, the pillow expands into a 4-inch thick, soft and squishy pillow for head, neck, and back support. The brushed polyester cover is soft against skin for cozy comfort, promising sleep and relaxation in places where getting a little shut-eye can be a challenge. Rest comes even easier knowing that the lofty urethane filling is upcycled—the byproduct of Thermarest mattresses, utilizing the waste generated during production. The Therm-a-Rest Compressible Travel Pillow is available in four sizes: Small measures 12 x 16 x 4 inches expanded (13 x 4 x 4 inches compressed) and weighs 7 ounces; Medium measures 14 x 18 x 4 inches expanded (14 x 5 x 6 inches compressed) and weighs 9 ounces; Large measures 16 x 23 x 4 inches expanded (16 x 7 x 7 inches compressed) and weighs 12 ounces; XL measures 16.5 x 27 x 4 inches expanded, (18 x 7 x 7 inches compressed) and weighs 15 ounces. Machine washable. Made in the USA.

Overall Product Rankings

MLVOC Memory Foam Travel Pillow
1. MLVOC Memory Foam Travel Pillow
Overall Score: 9.1
Expert Reviews: 14
J-Pillow Travel Pillow
2. J-Pillow Travel Pillow
Overall Score: 9.0
Expert Reviews: 28
Dot&Dot Twist Memory Foam Travel Pillow
3. Dot&Dot Twist Memory Foam Travel Pillow
Overall Score: 8.9
Expert Reviews: 10
Trtl Travel Pillow
4. Trtl Travel Pillow
Overall Score: 8.9
Expert Reviews: 23
Dreamtown Kids Toddler Pillow
5. Dreamtown Kids Toddler Pillow
Overall Score: 8.8
Expert Reviews: 23
AERIS Travel Pillow
6. AERIS Travel Pillow
Overall Score: 8.5
Expert Reviews: 14
Therm-a-Rest Compressible Travel Pillow
7. Therm-a-Rest Compressible Travel Pillow
Overall Score: 8.3
Expert Reviews: 12
Travelrest Therapeutic Memory Foam Travel & Neck Pillow
8. Travelrest Therapeutic Memory Foam Travel & Neck Pillow
Overall Score: 8.2
Expert Reviews: 9
BCOZZY Chin Supporting Travel Pillow
9. BCOZZY Chin Supporting Travel Pillow
Overall Score: 8.2
Expert Reviews: 19
Travelrest Ultimate Inflatable Travel Pillow
10. Travelrest Ultimate Inflatable Travel Pillow
Overall Score: 8.1
Expert Reviews: 20

An Overview On Travel Pillows

Whether you travel by plane, train or automobile, chances are your journey is going to last at least a few hours. As long as you aren’t the driver, you’ll be able to rest your head and catch a few ZZZs. Travel pillows are the perfect solution, as bed pillows are just too big to realistically transport. When shopping for a comfortable travel pillow, there are a few things to look for.

Kristin Forte/Simplemost Media

Determine who you’re buying the pillow for. There are pillows for adults, as well as children. The Dreamtown Kids Toddler Pillow is a good choice if you plan on bringing your kids along, as it resembles the bedtime pillow they have come to know and love and consists of hypoallergenic materials.

Kristin Forte/Simplemost Media

Look to see what type of support the pillow offers. You want a pillow that is going to prevent your neck from getting stiff and your muscles from getting sore. There are also models, like the J-Pillow Travel Pillow, that have added chin support to keep your head from falling over as you drift off to sleep.

Kristin Forte/Simplemost Media

Ask yourself what type of material you prefer? The two most common types are cotton and memory foam. Cotton is soft and comforting, while the memory foam is able to conform to your specific body shape.

Review the travel pillows uses. Some pillows are simply made for the neck and head, while others, like the Dot&Dot Twist Memory Foam Travel Pillow, can also be used to support the back or to prop up a leg.

Kristin Forte/Simplemost Media

Consider a travel pillow that comes with a few extras. The MLVOC Memory Foam Travel Pillow also offers customers a handy set of earplugs and an eye mask for quieting the senses. It also includes a travel bag to keep all of the pieces together.

DWYM Fun Fact

  • When we think of pillows today, we picture comfort and softness, but the first pillows used were literally hard as a rock. Back in 7,000 B.C., the ancient Mesopotamians used stone pillows. The Egyptians and Chinese followed suit. It wasn’t until the Industrial Era when pillows began to be used in households, and by this time, the pillows were soft.
  • In Hollywood, filmmakers would incorporate pillow fights into pictures to show conflict. The more feathers that flew out of the pillows, the more conflict was conveyed to the audience.
  • In Korea, Lee Jin-gyu actually married his life-size body pillow with the image of Fate Testarossa on it.
  • One of the more common pillow fillers in Asia is buckwheat.

The Travel Pillow Buying Guide

  • Look for a satisfaction guarantee or your money back clause when purchasing travel pillows online. This is always a good idea, since you can’t visit a store and physically try the pillows out.
  • Always read the product label to locate the cleaning instructions. Many travel pillows are safe to throw in the wash, but some aren’t. You don’t want to accidentally damage the pillow and have to shell out money for a new one.
  • Make sure the travel pillow doesn’t take up too much space so you have room in your luggage for more necessities. Another option is to choose a travel pillow can be attached to your luggage.
  • When it’s time to replace your travel pillow, consider a few alternative uses for it. You can use the pillow as a knee guard while gardening, a pet bed or even simply use the outer fabric as a rag for cleaning.
  • When comparing the price of travel pillows, you’ll need to take into account size and extra features. For example, the Dreamtown Kids Toddler Pillow costs less than the MLVOC Memory Foam Travel Pillow, as the toddler pillow is smaller. It also doesn’t come with a travel case, earbuds and an eye patch like the adult pillow. The Dot&Dot Twist Memory Foam Travel Pillow and the J-Pillow Travel Pillow are similar in price because they both have the same features, even though their design is slightly different.