Why you should always avoid the pillows and blankets provided on airplanes
While the pillows and blankets provided on airplanes may seem convenient, chances are they’re practically swimming in germs. You might think they are fine to use, but just because they are wrapped up in plastic does not mean they are neither clean nor new. Here are a few good reasons why you might want to avoid using them.
1. Hygiene concerns
Airline pillows are reused multiple times and most of the time they are not cleaned thoroughly between uses. Although this differs from airlines, many flight attendants and even research have proved that some choose to reuse blankets and pillows after each flight. You’ve probably noticed that once a plane arrives the waiting time for the next batch of passengers to get is short, therefore it is impossible to have enough time to properly wash and disinfect these items. Even on airlines that say that the pillows and blankets are laundered after each use, it is smart to question how clean and fresh they are. Keep in mind that even after washing them, they are not new nor personal, as millions of people put their faces and germs in them.
2. Harmful chemicals
For those airlines that guarantee their pillows are washed after being used, it is important to note that they use wholesale detergents that contain toxic chemicals. Researchers from the University of Washington studied top-selling laundry products and found that they emitted dozens of different chemicals identified as toxic or hazardous, including two classified as carcinogens. So even if you believe they are clean, you are putting your health at risk with chemicals such as diethanolamine (linked with skin and eye irritation and conceivably liver problems), petroleum distillates (linked to cancer and lung damage), nonylphenol ethoxylate (toxic to nerves, irritating to the skin, a potential hormone disruptor, toxic to aquatic life), and more.
Beware not only of travel pillows provided by airlines but also the standard, store-bought travel pillows you might buy as a last-minute resort. These are frequently made from harmful materials and filled up with tiny styrofoam balls, which are toxic and even linked to genetic damage to white blood cells and to certain blood cancers.
If you have concerns about the cleanliness of airplane pillows or are prone to allergies, the best thing to do is buy and bring your pillow. Our TRAVELLER memory foam pillow was made specifically for traveling purposes to provide comfort and preserve your health. Created without the use of harmful substances, this pillow is waterproof, ideal for the most sensitive skin, and also hypoallergenic as it inhibits bacterial growth naturally and permanently.
3. They are made from synthetic material and stored in bulk
Airlines do not invest in high-quality pillows as they are provided to millions of passengers, therefore they opt for cheap ones made from toxic materials and synthetic fills that are often composed of siliconized polyester fibers. And if you are not aware, polyester is overflowing with nasty chemicals, the main one being ethylene glycol. This toxin off-gases from pillows, meaning that you inhale it as you sleep. Not to mention it can also be absorbed through the skin which may cause skin and eye irritation, among other things. Since these pillows and blankets are bought in large amounts most are often stored in bulk, which increases the risk of exposure to germs, bacteria, and even allergens. If you have known allergies or sensitivities, using a pillow provided by an airline may increase the risk of an allergic reaction.
The Bsensbile travel pillow is produced with social responsibility, environmental sustainability, and natural origin fabric free of harmful substances. Not only is this good for your health but also safe for the environment.
Considering these factors and if you prioritize comfort and hygiene, it is best to bring your own BSensible TRAVELLER memory foam pillow and blanket when flying. This way, you can ensure a more comfortable rest knowing you are sleeping on a hypoallergenic, clean, and only yours-to-use item.