Emma Original Pillow Review: A firm adjustable pillow

A supremely firm choice, the Emma Original Pillow gives a great deal of support but it doesn’t have a soft feel to it. This pillow has three adjustable layers, which you can reorganize (or remove) to get the level of comfort that you want. Even so, I found this pillow a little too firm, and there are slightly more comfortable and adjustable memory foam pillows available.



  • very firm
  • Hard to tell the layers apart

  • layersThree adjustable internal foam layers.

  • trialA 30-day trial is available, so you can return this pillow if you don’t like it.


Like a kind of mini-mattress, the Emma Original Pillow uses the company’s memory foam technology to deliver a supportive pillow.

Adjustable for comfort, the pillow can have any of its layers removed to adjust its firmness and height. I found this pillow to be a little hard and not very forgiving and I preferred the alternatives.

Design and filling

  • Three layers of foam
  • good size
  • Adjustable comfort

The Emma Original Pillow comes pre-stuffed with three layers of foam. They are a pressure-relieving viscoelastic memory foam, designed to distribute weight evenly across your head, neck and shoulders.

Emma Original Pillow layers
Image Credit (Trusted Reviews)

Next is the HRX (High Resiliency Extra) hyper-soft cold foam, giving a combination of firmness and softness, which Emma says keeps your spine aligned.

Emma Original Pillow foam
Image Credit (Trusted Reviews)

Finally, there’s Airocell memory foam, which enhances airflow and absorbs moisture to keep you cool and dry.

Combined, the pillow is very firm. Yet, the layers are optional, and you can remove any of them to adjust the pillow’s feel. For side sleepers, Emma recommends all three layers; back sleepers are recommended to use the viscoelastic foam with the HRX foam; Stomach sleepers are advised to choose the right firmness and height and go for it.

Emma Original Pillowcase
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Given the various combinations that the foam can be inserted in, and then the choices of which fillings to go for, the Emma Original Pillow is highly customizable. The downside is that trying the pillow isn’t quite as easy as unboxing it: various combinations should be tried until you hit the level of support and comfort you like.

Of course, this may mean that you end up with some layers that you don’t want, and have to store the ones that you’re not using. I also found it slightly confusing that the layers are all the same colour. On Emma’s website, it shows the layers in different colors, making it easy to distinguish between them. I had to base my decision on touch and feel.

The soft cotton exterior can be removed and washed at 40°C, keeping the pillow in its best condition.

Emma Original Pillow washing instructions
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There’s a 30-day trial available of this pillow, so you can try it out before you commit to keeping it.


  • very firm
  • Good levels of support

I found the Emma Original Pillow very firm. Straight out of the box, with the default three layers, it was almost too firm to me as a side sleeper. In fact, it felt a little like sleeping on a tiny firm memory foam mattress.

I was about to give up, but then I tried playing with the layers, and found a combination that suited me better. I still felt as though the Emma Original Pillow was firm, as is typical for memory foam pillows, but I managed to get the right balance to make it more comfortable with a softer feel on top.

Laying down on my side, I measured that my head was kept 13cm from the mattress, which is towards the top end of what I’d expect. Still, this shows that the mattress is firm, but that it supports well, keeping my spine level.

I found that this mattress kept its shape well, bouncing back after I’d used it into its original shape without dipping.

I used a thermal camera to see how quickly the pillow could dissipate heat. I took an image every minute. Even after five minutes, the outline of my head can be clearly seen, showing that this pillow holds onto heat.

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Should you buy it?

If you want a very firm, customizable pillow, then this is a good choice, and it’s easy to look after.

If you’d prefer something slightly softer, there are better alternatives.

Final Thoughts

Memory foam pillows are much harder than pillows with other fillings. If you want a more natural, feather-like feel, then the Simba Hybrid should be the model that you buy. Play with the layers on this model, and it’s possible to balance comfort against support in a way that suits your own sleeping style. Even so, I did find this pillow to be quite firm and I found the similar Simba Hybrid Firm to be a better choice for those that want firmness and comfort.

How we test

We test every pillow we review thoroughly over an extended period of time. We use standard tests to compare features properly. We’ll always tell you what we find. We never, ever, accept money to review a product.

Find out more about how we test in our ethics policy.

Used as our main pillow for the review period

We use a thermal camera to see how quickly the pillow can dissipate heat for a comfortable night’s sleep.

We measure how far off the mattress our head is kept, to check how supportive the pillow is


Is the Emma Original Pillow adjustable?

Yes, you can use any combination of the three internal foam layers.

Can the Emma Original Pillow be washed?

The outer cover can be washed but the inner layers cannot be.

Trusted Reviews test data






Size (Dimensions)

Release date

First Reviewed Date

Model Number

Washable covers

Number of layers


pillow type

pillow test

pillow customizable



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As part of this mission, whenever we review a product, we send the company a series of questions to help us gauge and make transparent the impact the device has on the environment.

We currently haven’t received answers to the questions on this product, but we will update this page the moment we do. You can see a detailed breakdown of the questions we ask and why in our sustainability info page.

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