Projects & Improvements

10 Weird Ways Bed Pillows Can Solve Your Problems

updated Apr 29, 2019
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(Image credit: Joe Lingeman)

Maybe you’ve had the same bed pillow for ten years and have your sights newly set on some memory foam. Or maybe you’ve got an extra five random pillows stuffed in your closet, just in case, and it’s time to KonMari. As with most things we toss or get rid of these days, old pillows can still be used long after they’ve left their prime days behind. Here are 10 ways this everyday basic can help you out around the house, no matter what condition they’re currently in.

(Image credit: Joe Lingeman)

Make a Dog Bed: Instead of buying a dog bed for every room in the house, repurpose an extra pillow or two instead. If you use an old pillowcase as well, add some velcro to the ends to make it removable and washable, or just close it up with a quick basic stitch on the sewing machine.

Donate Extras to an Animal Shelter: Some shelters accept donations in the form of towels, blankets, and pillows, which make cozy, comfortable beds for pups and kitties waiting to be adopted. Unlike humans, pets usually don’t care about stains or holes.

Make a Giant Floor Pillow: If you have four or five standard bed pillows, you can sew them together with some fabric to make one long cushion. This one from You and Mie folds up futon-style for even more comfy seating.

(Image credit: Joe Lingeman)

Revive Old Stuffed Animals: If you have a pillow that’s gross and beyond cleaning, open it up and put the insides to better use. Transfer some of the foam or feathers to your pets’ or kids’ stuffed animals, and they’ll get a whole new life.

Bolster Other Pillows: Same goes with other pillows. Distribute some of the stuffing to plump up other smaller decorative throw pillows on your sofa or bed.

Use as a Kneeling Pad: If you love to garden, take an old pillow outside with you to spare your knees from getting dirty and sore. You can also use one inside while you’re cleaning out your sink cabinets, painting a baseboard, or tackling any other household task that requires you to get down low for long periods of time.

Wrap Pipes: Low basement ceilings often mean low overhead pipes—prime opportunities to hit your head. Wrap the worst culprits in a pillow and spare your noggin in the future. You can also use them strategically to prevent pipes from freezing on very cold days.

(Image credit: Joe Lingeman)

Supplement Other Packing Material: Instead of throwing all your extra pillows in a garbage bag and into the moving truck, use them as added packing material in boxes. An extra layer of padding in between two objects can protect fragile items during a move.

Use on Road Trips: Keep a pillow in your car, and use it to nap during long drives while someone else is behind the wheel.

Stop Drafts: Keep your home cozy (and energy bills from skyrocketing) by using old pillows to stop cold air from coming in. You can DIY a draft dodger using the old stuffing, or just throw one as-is at the base of your exterior door to plug up any gaps.