15 Things You Never Thought To Do With An Old Pillow

Uses for Old Bed Pillows

If you’re anything like me, you probably have a few bags of old clothes and bedding around the house somewhere. You meant to take them to Goodwill ages ago, but several months have gone by and those bags are just collecting dust. But there’s no shame in that—in fact, today it might just work in your favor if you happen to have a couple of old bed pillows in those bags!

Today we’ll be discussing creative was to reuse, repurpose, and recycle old bed pillows. Every bed pillow will eventually wear out over time, whether it stops providing adequate support, develops weird lumps, or just sort of falls apart. And while those pillows need to be retired from your bed, that doesn’t mean they’re totally useless! There are plenty of clever ways to put those old pillows to good use, and we’ll be exploring some of those uses today!

If you have any brilliant uses for old bed pillows that aren’t listed here, we’d love to hear about them! Share your bright ideas in a comment at the bottom of this post and we can keep the conversation going. :-)

15 New Uses For Old Bed Pillows

Uses for Old Bed Pillows

1. Make Rags

Open up your old pillow and remove the stuffing. Then cut up the remaining fabric into square pieces and use them as rags for cleaning projects!

2. Stuff Another Pillow

Have a pillow that could use a bit more stuffing? You can use stuffing from an old pillow that’s ready to be retired. Just remove the stuffing from the old pillow and put it into the other.

Uses for Old Bed Pillows

3. Double Up

To extend the lifespan of a pillow that’s gone all thin and lumpy, just use two of them! Grab your two thinnest pillows and put them in a pillowcase together. You’ll have a suitably firm pillow that should work nicely for at least a few more months!

4. Compost Your Feathers

If you’re retiring an old feather pillow, remove the feathers and add them to your compost pile instead. Apparently they break down well in compost!

Uses for Old Bed Pillows

5. Donate Them

If you’re upgrading to a new pillow, your old one may still be in pretty good shape. If that’s the case, consider donating your old pillow to your local homeless shelter or animal shelter. (Keep in mind that it’s a good idea to wash your pillows before donating them.)

Related: How To Rescue Your Old, Yellowed Pillows

6. Block Drafts

Use your old pillow to make a quick and easy draft-blocking device. Put it in front of your draftiest door and you’ll notice a big difference!

Related: “Sock” It To Your Energy Bill By Making Your Own Draft Stopper

Uses for Old Bed Pillows

7. Block Chimney Drafts

If you have a drafty chimney rather than a door, never fear! An old pillow can help you here too. Just put your old pillow into a trash bag to protect it from the elements, and stuff it up your chimney. It’ll help stop those chilly drafts from coming through into the house.

Uses for Old Bed Pillows

8. Protect A Package

Use the stuffing from an old pillow as packing material the next time you ship a fragile package. You could also stuff the whole pillow in the box if you want!

Uses for Old Bed Pillows

9. Moving Helper

Use old pillows to help protect you’re stuff while you’re moving. Place them between bikes to keep them from getting scratched up. If you have to lean other items against a piece of furniture in the truck, place a pillow there to keep it from scuffing or rubbing while in transit.

Uses for Old Bed Pillows

10. Knee Pad

Use an old pillow as a knee pad when gardening or doing yard work. Your knees will thank you, and you won’t have to spend any extra money on a knee pad.

Uses for Old Bed Pillows

11. Insulate Everything

Old pillows make great insulation in a pinch! You can use the stuffing (or the whole pillow) to add insulation to:

  • Your loft or attic
  • Around your bathtub
  • Your hot water tank
  • Your pipes

12. Pamper Your Hamster

Your hamster would love the stuffing from an old pillow in his cage. Use it to line the bottom of his cage, then replace it with fresh stuffing once it gets soiled.

Uses for Old Bed Pillows

13. Make A Cushion

Use a few old pillows to make a comfy floor cushion! There’s a great tutorial on how to make one at Dabbles and Babbles.

14. Road Trip Pillow

If your family takes a lot of road trips, use your old pillows to make the next trip super comfy! All you have to do is sew a couple of straight lines with your sewing machine. Check out the full tutorial on Dandylion Roots!

Uses for Old Bed Pillows

15. Make A Pet Bed

Your dog or cat deserves a comfy place to sit! But you don’t have to spend a fortune on a fancy pet bed if you have an old pillow! Get the full tutorial on how to make a simple, no-sewing-required pet bed for your fur babies at the link below.

Related: Make A Comfy, No-Sew Pet Bed For Your Furry Friends

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Jill Nystul Photo

Jill Nystul (aka Jillee)

Jill Nystul is an accomplished writer and author who founded the blog One Good Thing by Jillee in 2011. With over 30 years of experience in homemaking, she has become a trusted resource for contemporary homemakers by offering practical solutions to everyday household challenges.I share creative homemaking and lifestyle solutions that make your life easier and more enjoyable!

About Jillee

Jill Nystul

Jill’s 30 years of homemaking experience, make her the trusted source for practical household solutions.

About Jillee


Homekeeping Tips

  • Jillie , the only complaint about your blog posts is that they are so addictive. I could (have) spent an afternoon reading up on how to do things better. Keep up the great work.

  • Jillee, your tips are always appreciated to me. Love you discuss about donating the old pillows as a homeless shelter or animal shelter. And I found similar thoughts between you and me for several tips like knee pad and pet bed. Waiting for your next beautiful post. Wish you all the best…


  • Great ideas, but I’m concerned about stuffing a pillow up a chimney (#7). All chimneys are meant to ventilate air and keep gases or smoke from a boiler, stove, furnace or fireplace from collecting in a home (from Wikepedia). That to me should be a big no-no.

  • I had an older 4″ memory foam bed topper that had seen some better days, plus it was just too hot for me. So, my dog’s bed was wearing out, but the cover was in excellent shape. I cut the foam and made two beds that do not collapse. It still keeps it shape and my dog is so very happy. He has a bed downstairs and upstairs as well. I put percale cool sheets on the one upstairs so he doesn’t become too hot. He’s an older boy and this seems to help him tremendously. I’ll have to try some of your ideas regarding older pillows.

  • Great ideas. I’ve done no. 3 before. It:drives me crazy to sleep on a flat pillow. I have used them underneat my regular pillow. Or I use one of my spare daybed pillows to elevate my head.

  • What a great list, Jill!

    I’ve used many old pillows over the years as dog beds, especially on young dogs that are prone to tearing up their beds. Once they outgrow the destruction phase, you can buy them nicer beds. I also found that putting an unwashed bed pillow in my latest rescue dog’s crate, along with putting her in the crate while I was home (for a little while at first and increasing the time gradually) so she could see everything going on, she was able to overcome her anxiety of being left alone. Prior to using the pillow, she’d torn up a couple of crate pads I’d put in there. For outdoor dog beds, I’ve put bed pillows in heavy duty garbage bags, then bought or made a canvas cover for them.

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