Pillow Reviews: Beyond Down Gel Fiber vs. Five Star Down Alternative

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The Beyond Down Gel Fiber pillow and the Five Star Down Alternative pillow are incredibly similar, from their polyester fiber fillings and crisp cotton covers. It really comes down to the details to see what sets them apart. To find out more, read on for my full comparison.

Key Similarities

  • Filled with 100% polyester fibers (down-like filling)
  • 100% cotton covers (both 300-thread count)
  • Gussets for extra width
  • Traditional-shaped
  • Machine washable and dryer friendly
  • Hypoallergenic
  • Come in a variety of sizes

related: best pillow for side sleepers

Left: Beyond Down Gel Fiber pillow (King)  Right: Five Star Down Alternative pillow (Queen)

Key Differences

Beyond Down Gel Fiber Pillow:

  • Cover: 300 thread count, 100% cotton cover
  • Filling: gel fiber that mimics goose down (100% polyester fiber)
  • Intended to give the feel of 600 fill power pure down
  • 4.5” gusset, with double needle corded edges
  • Designed for side sleepers but can be comfortable for all sleep positions
  • Comes in Standard, Queen, and King
  • Care: machine wash and dryer friendly

Beyond Down Gel Fiber Side Sleeper Pillow Review

Read the full Beyond Down Gel Fiber pillow review, here. 

Five Star Down:

  • 300 thread count, 100% cotton cover – Damask fabric with satin piping
  • Filling: 100% polyester microfibers (down-like filling)
  • 1.5″ gusset
  • Flat and formed – cannot be scrunched up like a down pillow
  • Sizes: Standard, Queen, King, and Euro Size
  • No trial period or warranty options (unless specified by retailer)
  • Care: machine wash and dryer friendly

Five Star Down Alternative Pillow Review

Check out the complete Five Star Down Alternative pillow review, here. 

You Might Choose

Beyond Down If….

You are a side sleeper. Based on my experience I think both pillows can work for stomach sleepers but the 4.5” gusset on the Beyond Down pillow gives it room for some extra filling that could make it work for side sleepers. It may not be enough support for everyone but side sleepers will find it more comfortable than the Five Star Down pillow.

Five Star Down If…

You are a stomach sleeper. The polyester fibers do provide slightly more firmness and even distribution than a down pillow (based on my experience). However, I think this pillow is the best fit for stomach sleepers (or even back sleepers) more than side sleepers.

Either If…

You love the feel of down. Beyond Down and Five Star Down are both filled with polyester fibers that are intended to mimic down. Based on my experience, they both have super soft and cozy down-like feels to them (minus the allergies!)

You are on a budget. Both of these pillows are affordable, coming in at less than $50 each, even for a King size.

You want a pillow that’s easy to care for. These pillows are both machine washable and dryer friendly. Just make sure to balance the loads with other clothes!

Beyond Down Gel Fiber (left) and Five Star Down Alternative (right)


I have had great experiences with both of these pillows and for the same reasons. They are really incredibly similar and provide that soft cozy feel that you get with down but with no risk of allergies.

They both feel the same, but the higher gusset on the Beyond Down Gel Fiber pillow makes it a slightly better match for side sleepers. I think stomach and back sleepers can enjoy either pillow.

In terms of price point, these pillows are very comparable – and affordable- as well.

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Katie Golde

Katie manages the day to day operations of the Mattress Clarity news site and reviews sleep products in addition to writing and editing sleep news.She hails from Austin, where she lives with her growing family. She is a Certified Sleep Science Coach and has a master’s degree in Journalism from Northwestern University and has a background in health and science content. Her work can be found in print and online publications like Discover Magazine, USA Today and The Huffington Post.