This review of the bbhugme pregnancy pillow includes gifted items.
What was your very first pregnancy purchase? Something sweet, tiny and knitted? A little gift for your growing bundle of joy?
I’ve personally known for a long time what my first purchase would be; something I’ve dreamt of, envisioned, time and time again. It would be something that would share my bed, support me when I needed it most and hold me each and every night.
It would, my friends, be a pregnancy pillow.
After trialling one of these life-changing products a few years ago at a hen party, a sudden – and entirely unexpected – obsession began. In fact, so extreme was this addiction that I eventually relented and bought my own pregnancy pillow from IKEA.
I was single and absolutely not pregnant.
However, and after regularly having to stuff my beloved sleep aid in my cupboard when visitors came by, I reluctantly parted ways with the pillow a few years ago – the shame of my phantom pregnancy proving too much.
It’s probably no stretch to therefore imagine just how thrilled I was to discover I was pregnant. Aside, of course, from being gifted the privilege of parenthood, I could also finally – legitimately – invest in a pregnancy pillow.
I immediately began researching the best pregnancy pillows on the market – browsing ‘wedge’ pillows, ‘C shaped’ pillows, ‘U shaped pillows’ and intriguingly named ‘belly nest’ pillows.
However, it wasn’t long before I sensed a common theme – with one particular brand standing head and shoulders above the rest: the bbhugme pregnancy pillow.
What is the bbhugme Pregnancy Pillow?
The bbhugme pregnancy pillow has very quickly become something of a cult celebrity.
Carefully designed and informed by the experience of three chiropractors, the pillow is the vision of award-winning Norwegian brand, bbhugme. Quietly taking the maternity world by storm, this clever brand produces a suite of innovative and versatile products for both pregnancy and beyond: from nursing pillows to maternity support belts.
Over the last year, I’d seen this famous pillow crop up everywhere from (spontaneous) celebrity endorsements on Instagram, to Vogue articles.
With thousands of reviewers agreeing that the bbhugme pregnancy pillow was their most important maternity purchase to date (and admitting that they would happily leave their partners for it), it was difficult not to get swept up by the hype surrounding this brand.
Indeed, if you’re willing to settle down with a stuffed pillow, it must be quite something.
But, as they say, the proof is in the pudding. Given that the pillow is one of the most expensive on the markets – coming in at £138 – I was a little skeptical as to whether the bbhugme pregnancy pillow would really be worth its hefty price tag.
Surely any old pillow between the legs would do?
What Makes the bbhugme Pregnancy Pillow So Special?
Believe it or not, not all pillows are made equal. This is especially true when it comes to pregnancy pillows.
To my untrained eye, I just presumed that these squishy mounds of comfort would all feel the same and (I imagined) would do the same job. I was unsure just how innovative you could get with a pillow: perhaps spice things up with a bit of memory foam and a silk case?
However, it turns out that the world of pregnancy pillows is one filled with innovators and engineers; each agonising over design plans and medical diagrams to produce not only the most comfortable, but the most effective, pregnancy pillow.
Keeping pregnant ladies comfortable at night is a serious business.
It’s here, in the realm of innovation and design, that the bbhugme pregnancy pillow really comes into its own.
Designed by Experts
Firstly, the bbhugme pregnancy pillow is not only intended to look great (and feel reassuringly squishy), but is designed to play a very important physiological role.
The brainchild of three Norwegian chiropractors – Hilde, Ann Kristin and Elisabeth – the bbhugme pregnancy pillow is the result of considerable experience treating pregnant and postnatal women. Only too aware of just how many women came to them suffering back and pelvis pain, along with severely disturbed sleep thanks to the physical pains surrounding pregnancy, these wonderful ladies understood that they must do something.
Assessing the wider pregnancy pillow market, they realised that there was nothing available that could be used as a continuation of their treatment within a clinical setting; a product that was genuinely effective.
The rest, as they say, is of course history. Armed with a clear understanding of not only how women are impacted by pregnancy, but how best to prevent these ailments in the first place, they set about designing and creating a truly transformative pillow.
Indeed, in 2015, the bbhugme pregnancy pillow was even awarded the ‘Best Design Award’ from the Norwegian Centre for Design and Architecture.
Unique 5 Point Support System
Unlike some pregnancy pillows, the bbhugme pillow is a ‘side sleeper’ pillow – encouraging ladies to stay on their sides (ideally their left) throughout the night. It’s claimed that this position promotes optimal blood flow and prevents any additional pressure on your organs.
For someone of my height (‘5’4″), the pillow begins at my shoulders and comes to just below my knees.
Designed to be ‘hugged’ while on your side (hitching your leg over it for additional comfort), the bbhugme pregnancy pillow offers an important ‘five point support system’ – ensuring the lower back, pelvis, knees, stomach and ankles are all equally supported.
Some pillows only support one or two of these things – leading other joints to overcompensate for the additional weight – something the designers of the bbhugme pillow considered carefully in their design process.
Resting on the bbhugme pillow therefore provides the (incredibly relaxing experience) of being fully and entirely supported – allowing me to relax my pelvis and back without any uncomfortable ‘dragging’ sensation or extra weight on my knees.
One USP of the bbhugme pregnancy pillow is that, unlike other pillows on the market, it can be adjusted to suit your preference (i.e firm or more relaxed).
Filled with an inner pillow, which is surrounded by tiny microbeads, the bbhugme comes with two ‘pebbles’ (BPA free) which can be moved up and down the length of each end of the pillow.
Think of it as a little like wrapping a sausage in clingfilm – and twisting each end to increase the pressure in the middle.
I’ve found this to be an incredibly useful feature, particularly when using the bbhugme pregnancy pillow for different ‘activities’. For example, while I’m working and the pillow is behind me, I like it as firm as possible to help improve my posture. However, in bed, I tend to relax it a little in order to get more length.
A one trick pony the bbhugme pregnancy pillow is not.
Alongside being your new favourite bedtime companion, the pillow is also designed to support pregnant and postnatal women throughout the day. From using it to help support your back when watching television, to aiding ‘front sleepers’, this pillow is truly the gift that keeps on giving.
I regularly like to use it to wrap around myself and perch my laptop on during the day. It helps me sit up straighter and keeps the laptop at a great height for my neck and wrists.
Stays Clean & Hygienic
If there’s one thing that nobody wants to admit, it’s that all too often, their beloved pillow might fall victim to the odd pool of dribble.
On pillows such as the bbhugme pregnancy pillow, with thin covers, this can be less than desirable. There’s nothing worse than snuggling into a pillow marbled in a collection of stains.
Aware of this unfortunate pillow affliction, the lovely folk at bbhugme therefore ensured that their pillows are entirely odour free, complete with natural antibacterial and anti-fungal properties. With the removable covers easy to take off, you can also throw them in the wash whenever you think things might need a freshen up.
When Should I Start Using the bbhugme Pregnancy Pillow?
When I was researching which pregnancy pillow to buy, I was (naïvely) under the assumption that I should only really invest in one in the third trimester – when my bump qualified for one.
However, after a chat with the lovely Johanna at bbhugme, I realised I had it all wrong.
All too often, the chiropractors at bbhugme were seeing women coming to them only once they’d reached the stage in which they were in considerable pain (and often unable to sleep).
This, of course, is not ideal.
Instead, start using the bbhugme pregnancy pillow early on (I started using mine at 18 weeks). By doing so, you’re proactively preventing yourself suffering with a bad back or painful pelvis – and supporting your joints now, rather than waiting for pain to come later.
I’d therefore say that it’s never too early to start using a pregnancy pillow – in fact, the sooner the better.
How Should I Use the Pillow?
What has perhaps surprised me the most is just how much use I get from my bbhugme pregnancy pillow – and not just at bedtime. Designed to support women when they’re both relaxing and working, there are a number of ways to make use of this brilliant product.
Working from Home
Thanks to the Coronavirus pandemic, most of us are now working from home; those ergonomically designed workplaces already a thing of the past. Initially, this was a change that seemed incredibly appealing – until just a few weeks later I felt like I’d slipped a disc while hunched at the kitchen table.
Conscious I needed to improve my posture and sit a little straighter, I started to use the bbhugme pregnancy pillow to support me while I worked. Tucking my chair in tightly, I wrapped the pillow around me – creating a firm ring of support to lean against.
The difference this has made to my back and pelvis pain has been incredible – I sit straighter, don’t hunch over my stomach (hello, heartburn) and keep my neck straight.
In fact, the pillow has been so effective that I’m tempted to start taking it into the office when we return (sometime next decade, I presume).
Relief from Heartburn
While the traditional way to sleep with a pregnancy pillow might be to lay alongside it (leg hitched up), the folk at bbhugme also suggest you position it a little differently to help relieve heartburn (and reflux).
Heartburn is something that’s plagued me since month three of my pregnancy – and I quickly learnt that trying to sleep with an endless fire burning in your throat is rather difficult. With Gaviscon no longer cutting the mustard, I decided to try positioning the bbhugme pregnancy pillow around my shoulders – propping me up as I slept (I could still sleep on my side, just angled upwards slightly).
The difference this made to my reflux was incredible – and that night was the first night in two months that I wasn’t woken up by the sensation that my throat was being slowly eroded.
Reading and Watching TV
When it comes to reading and watching TV – the bbhugme pregnancy pillow has been something of a game-changer. In fact, it’s been so brilliant that my partner and I now regularly fight over who gets to spend the night with it (whilst binge watching Netflix, of course).
Although my sofa is fairly firm and supportive, I still have a tendency to slouch when I’m sat on it; something that only angers my acid reflux. I’ve since decided to sit with the pillow wrapped around my lower back and tied on my lap; creating a neat little dinghy to sit within.
The result is that I feel cosy, supported and comfortable – like I’m sat on my own little ergonomic throne.
As a self-proclaimed back sleeper, I’ve never been able to understand why, or how, people can sleep comfortably on their stomachs.
However, if you are pregnant and longing for the days of sleeping on your front, then the bbhugme pregnancy pillow might just be your knight in shining armour. Simply create a ring with the pillow (tying the ends together) et voilà; you have the perfect ‘hole’ to safely place your tummy in.
You may need to pile your pillows a little higher in order to support your neck and head (and possibly a pillow to support your ankles), but by doing this, you could feasibly enjoy a comfortable nap on your front.
Nursing & Supporting a Newborn Baby
Although bbhugme do sell a separate nursing pillow, I’ve seen many women use their pregnancy pillow to both breastfeed and support their babies. Thanks to the adjustable ties, it would be easy to create a firm ‘ring’ of cushion that surrounds you and is then perfect for lying your baby on.
Additionally, you could also pop this ring on the floor and lay your baby inside – providing your little one with a safe nest to rest in while you get on with other things.
Is the bbhugme Pregnancy Pillow Worth the Price?
If you are hesitating over whether or not to take the (financial) plunge and invest in the bbhugme pillow, then I’d completely understand.
With some pregnancy pillows on the market costing as little as £25, this Norwegian brand’s £138 price tag might seem a little excessive; particularly when you have so many other things to budget for.
However, and although a little cliché, the old saying – ‘you get what you pay for’ – really does ring true when it comes to pregnancy pillows. Sure, you could save yourself some money and opt for a cheaper version – but the likelihood is that you’ll see few real benefits.
Pregnancy pillows are not just about comfort: they play a genuinely important physiological and medical role; protecting your joints and ligaments from harm during pregnancy. With your body experiencing more weight, pressure and demand than ever before – it’s so important you protect it, even when sleeping.
It is entirely for this reason that I would whole heartedly recommend the bbhugme pregnancy pillow – suggesting that while yes, it is definitely expensive, it is also truly worth the price.
Designed by medical experts – and women who have experienced the repercussions of not supporting your joints or limbs during pregnancy – this pillow is easily one of my most trusted pieces of pregnancy ‘kit’.
Furthermore, and thanks to just how versatile the pillow is, I’m certain I’ll be using it far beyond my pregnancy (if, of course, I can wrestle it off my partner). From supporting me as I work, to helping me relieve any nasty indigestion, the bbhugme pregnancy pillow is now well and truly part of my life – for good.