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Throw pillows add color and personality to a room while providing extra comfort and support on the couch, bed, armchair and other resting spaces around the home. They also allow you to quickly change up the look of living spaces without spending a fortune replacing furniture and linens. 

There’s a plethora of throw pillows available, which can make choosing the perfect ones a challenge. This guide, in addition to describing our curated picks—some of the prettiest, most comfortable options on the market—will review important shopping considerations to ensure that you find throw pillows that suit your style, space, and budget.

How We Chose the Best Throw Pillows

Methodology

While it’s easy to assume that all throw pillows offer similar performance, a number of factors affect their functionality. Years of experience covering the home goods and furniture market as well as extensive product research went into this curated selection. We reviewed over 40 throw pillows and weighed a number of practical considerations when making our recommendations. 

Fill Material: Throw pillow inserts are filled with either natural or synthetic materials, both of which have advantages and disadvantages. Pillows filled with down and feathers from waterfowl like geese and ducks feel the most luxurious and hold their shape best over time. However, down and feathers may be an irritant for those with allergies. Pillows filled with synthetic materials like polyester are more affordable and don’t need to be fluffed frequently, but don’t hold their shape as well in the long run. On the upside, however, they won’t be a problem for allergy sufferers. We made sure to include both types of filling in this guide. 

Firmness: Throw pillows range in firmness from plush to firm. We aimed to include options at both ends of the spectrum in the guide. 

Water resistance: Water resistance is a top priority when shopping for a cushion insert or cover that you plan to use outside. We only considered water-resistant options for our outdoor pick. 

Washability:  Depending on the materials, throw pillow inserts may or may not be machine washable. While we gave preference to inserts and covers that could be tossed in the wash as necessary, several quality options, especially those with covers that are not removable, recommend spot cleaning only. 

The Best Throw Pillows: Reviews and Recommendations

Best Overall: JA COMFORTS Down Feather Throw Pillow Inserts

Feather-Filled

These goose-down and feather-filled pillow inserts are machine washable and come in a wide range of sizes. JA Comforts

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Why It Made The Cut: A plush mixture of down and feathers, sold as a pair, these JA Comforts inserts are durable, comfortable< and easy care. 

Specs: 

  • Fill Material: Feather and down
  • Available Sizes: 12 x 20, 16 x 16, 18 x 18, 20 x 20, 22 x 22, 24 x 24, 26 x 26, 28 x 28 inches
  • Care Instructions: Machine washable

Pros:

  • Feather and down filling
  • Cotton shell
  • Multiple sizes available
  • Machine washable

Cons:

  • Filling may irritate those with allergies

This two-pack of pillow inserts from JA Comforts are constructed entirely with natural materials and are designed to retain their loft over time. The pillows are filled with 95-percent goose feathers and 5-percent goose down to create a firm level of support that won’t sag. The filling is breathable and absorbent, while the shell is made from 100-percent cotton and is completely down-proof, which means the stitching prevents quills and feathers from poking out. 

Choose from eight different sizes to best suit your style and needs. Though the pillows are compressed for shipping, their natural filling allows them to plump up right away: Simply fluff, cover, and throw!  These inserts are machine washable, making laundering a breeze if they become stained or soiled. Just be aware that some people may be allergic to the filling.

Best Value: Utopia Bedding Throw Pillows Insert

Plush and Affordable

This set of two throw pillows comes in a wide array of sizes and features a plush polyester filling. Utopia

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Why It Made The Cut: With two pillows per purchase, a hypoallergenic filling, and a wide range of sizes available, these Utopia Bedding throw pillows make a great budget pick. 

Specs: 

  • Fill Material: Polyester
  • Available Sizes: 12 x 12, 12 x 20, 14 x 14, 16 x 16, 18 x 18, 20 x 20, 22 x 22, 24 x 24, 26 x 26, 28 x 28 inches
  • Care Instructions: Spot clean or hand wash

Pros:

  • Hypoallergenic
  • Many sizes available
  • Excellent value

Cons:

  • Must be hand washed
  • Requires 72 hours to expand

This affordable two-pack from Utopia Bedding comes with a pair of hypoallergenic polyester fiber-filled inserts that retain their shape—no sagging or sinking to detract from your decor. The square pillows are available in a wide range of sizes, and there’s also a 12-inch by 20-inch rectangular option. The 450-gram fill weight of the 18-by-18-inch pillow, for example, signifies a soft and fluffy feeling that will hold up well. 

The insert is designed to be used with a cover, so it shouldn’t require frequent laundering, but should the cotton-blend casing become stained or soiled, use a sponge or cloth to spot clean the affected area. Tumble dry at a low temperature or allow it to dry naturally in a warm, sunny area. The pillows are condensed for shipping and require up to 72 hours to expand. 

Best with Cover: ​​Amazon Basics 2-Pack Velvet Fleece Decorative Throw Pillows

Luxurious Fabric

This pillow two-pack includes both inserts and covers in florals, gingham, and other patterns. Amazon Basics

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Why It Made The Cut: These throw pillows inserts feature lush velvet or elegant linen covers. 

Specs: 

  • Fill Material: Polyester
  • Size: 18 by 18 inches
  • Care Instructions: Spot clean 

Pros:

  • Covers included
  • Wide color selection
  • Excellent value

Cons:

  • Cover is not removable
  • Only one size available

For lush fabric at a low price, consider this two-pack of throw pillows from Amazon Basics. It includes both inserts and covers, in your choice of soft, smooth velvet or textured linen. There’s a vast array of colors and patterns to choose from—including gingham, floral, and geometric—so it’s easy to mix and match to get a look you’ll love. This set includes two 18-inch square pillows (additional sizes are not available). 

Both the cover and filling are made from 100 percent polyester, but because the covers are not removable, any stains must be spot cleaned. This means they may not be the best choice for those with pets or young children. The pillows come in a vacuum-sealed package and require about 24 hours to regain their shape. 

Best Round: Elero Round Pillows

Beautiful Boho

This stylish tufted pillow provides retro opulence at an affordable price. Elero

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Why It Made The Cut: Elero’s round pillow has a vintage-inspired design in a soft, velvety fabric that adds vintage appeal to your living room. 

Specs: 

  • Fill Material: Polyester
  • Size: 14.7 x 14.7 inches
  • Care Instructions: Spot clean

Pros:

  • Tasteful color options
  • Vintage-inspired design
  • Soft, velvety material

Cons:

  • Spot clean only

A round throw pillow—like this one from Elero—lends a vintage feel to any room. Since they’re less common, round pillows make a unique statement, pairing nicely with square options for contrast. This polyester-filled pillow has tufted design for added impact, and its integrated velvet-feel cover is soft and luxurious to the touch. Choose from six tasteful, richly pigmented colors: black, orange, green, burgundy, rust, and navy. The fabric has intricate pleating and a subtle sheen to it which provides added visual interest. 

The pillow measures 14.17 by 14.17 inches by 4.72 inches. While they work well as decorative accents on a couch or bed, the size is ample enough for use as floor cushions for a boho feel. The cover and filling are integrated, meaning the cover isn’t removable and any soils must be spot cleaned. 

Best Outdoor: Foamily Outdoor Pillows for Patio

Two-in-One

This outdoor throw pillow insert is the perfect choice for your patio and doubles as a dog bed. Foamily

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Why It Made The Cut: Foamily’s pillow insert is water-resistant and available in an assortment of sizes to suit your outdoor living space. 

Specs: 

  • Fill Material: Polyester
  • Available Sizes: 12 x 12, 12 x 20, 16 x 16, 18 x 18, 20 x 20, 22 x 22, 24 x 24, 26 x 26, 28 x 28 inches
  • Care Instructions: Not Available

Pros:

  • Multiple sizes available
  • Water-resistant
  • Suitable for indoor or outdoor use
  • Hypoallergenic

Cons:

  • May require time to expand

Outdoor throw pillows make patio furniture more comfortable and add decorative flair.  But along with a waterproof cover, the insert should be water-resistant to stand up to inevitable moisture outside. This Foamily insert is just the ticket, thanks to its water-resistant polyester and a shell that causes water to bead up rather than penetrate. 

Foamily inserts have a firm feel supportive enough to use as a back pillow on deep-set patio chairs. They’re available in a wide range of sizes to suit your favorite outdoor cushion covers. And while marketed primarily for outdoor use, these pillow inserts can be used inside too; in fact, because they’re water-resistant, the manufacturer suggests that the inserts make great dog beds! 

Things to Consider Before Buying a Throw Pillow

We’re not just throwing it out there! Definitely keep the following in mind as you shop for throw pillows.

Shape

Throw pillows generally come in one of four basic shapes: square, rectangular, round, and bolster. 

  • Square throw pillows, also known as Euro pillows, are the most popular, and they come in a wide choice of sizes. It’s easy to find square pillows in just about every color, pattern, material, and texture you could imagine. 
  • Rectangular throw pillows, also known as lumbar pillows, provide back support on an armchair and can be used as a decorative accent on beds and couches. 
  • Round throw pillows add vintage flair to any room and break up the sharp angles of square and rectangular pillows. 
  • Bolster throw pillows are cylindrically shaped and are designed to prop up your arms or support your back as you sit. 

Size

Throw pillows come in a variety of sizes, depending on their shape. In terms of square pillows, 18- by 18-inch inserts are the most popular and readily available. Some may prefer slightly larger 20- by 20-inch inserts for the sofa as they provide a more comfy and inviting feel. When shopping for throw pillows for your bedroom, consider 26- by 26-inch square pillows, which are large enough to prop you up while you sit in bed. 

Size is also an important consideration when shopping for throw pillow covers. If you’re buying inserts and covers separately, make sure the insert fits by choosing a cover that’s 1 to 2 inches larger than the insert. An 18 by 18-inch insert, for example, will fit best in a 20 by 20-inch cover. 

Color and Pattern

Choosing throw pillows for your living space is largely a personal choice based on your style and the aesthetic of your home. That said, there are a few guidelines that designers tend to follow to create a cohesive look when choosing throw pillows for a space. Whether you choose solid colors or an array of patterns, stick to a cohesive color palette. You’ll find options online for sets of four or more covers that are designed to coordinate with one another. If you’re mixing and matching yourself, consider one small pattern, one large pattern, and one solid color—always a winning combination.

FAQs

Q: How many throw pillows should I put on my couch?

There’s no “right” number of throw pillows for a couch because couch sizes vary and personal taste is a prime determinant. Some designers recommend using an odd number of pillows—five pillows for a three-seater couch, for example—while others recommend using an even number of pillows for a more symmetrical look.

Q: What’s the best material for throw pillow inserts?

Down-filled pillows are best for comfort and longevity while polyester doesn’t require frequent fluffing and may be a better choice for allergy sufferers.

Q: How do you wash a throw pillow?

Removable throw pillow covers generally come with laundering instructions that will outline whether they should be spot cleaned, hand washed, dry cleaned, or machine washed. Throw pillows without removable inserts typically need to be spot cleaned as needed.

Final Thoughts

Like the icing on a cake, throw pillows add a final touch to a decor scheme in the living room, bedroom, den, and elsewhere around the house. They also make it more comfortable to sit and recline, bringing extra support. Throw pillows, which can be purchased as inserts and covers separately or together, come in a range of shapes, sizes, and cover patterns/colors and are available at a range of prices so you can suit your style without blowing your budget.

After reviewing our guide, you should feel well-informed when shopping for throw pillows for your home. These recommendations for the best throw pillows cover a variety of types and styles to best suit your needs. The JA COMFORTS Down Feather Throw Pillow Inserts are our top pick because of their high-quality goose down and feather filling, multiple size options, and great value. Our recommended choice for those on a budget is the two-pack of Utopia Bedding Throw Pillows Inserts.

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