1. Spring for the good stuff, toss the old and lumpy.
My dad lives by the saying, 'you get what you pay for'. And while he'll never enjoy a free movie in the park, he's pretty on the money. Get the good stuff when it matters. Be comfortable. In your skin. In your bed. Turn your back on the bad people and lumpy pillows in your life. Don't compromise where it counts.
2. A few wrinkles aren't a bad thing.
Chasing perfection sucks. You know that one day a year where you pull yourself together with your hair done/outfit done/everything did — then try to sneak in a nap? Tell me you've never done this: you lie real stiff with your clothes smoothed and something propping up the base of your skull, hoping for geisha-sleep-poise. And then what? It's a shitty nap and now your hair looks just as bad. So forget it. Don't strive for pristine. Live your life. Get out, get dirty, and be fine with looking like you did. Smile until you earn those crow's feet. Nap like it's your job.
3. Make sure they don't stink.
Your life. Your house. Your say. It sounds simple to the point of being obvious, but you'd be surprised how often people bring other peoples' baggage into their home to stink up the place. You can have pillows that swear. Or whatever else you want. If you like it don't second guess it. And don't apologize to anyone that expects you to do anything but you.
4. Bigger isn't always better, unless it is.
My partner has been on a quest for his perfect pillow for a good 5 years and recently he found it. It's a super firm, enormously thick bamboo pillow and he won't shut up about it. Naturally my first reaction was 'wow, I need one immediately'. But then I tried it and it's terrrrrrrrible. It's like sleeping on a watermelon. So while I'm glad he found his dream pillow, I'll do a faceplant right back into my medium fluff, thanks.
5. Sleep on it.
You know why you've heard that a million times? Not just because your brain needs time to sort things out. It does. It's because post nap, well-rested you is the best you. And if any version of you is going to be calling the shots, it might as well be best you.