Exped Air Pillow UL Review: A Detailed Analysis

It can be quite difficult to enjoy a peaceful sleep when you’re on a camping trip.

Exped has come up with a solution with its Exped Ultralight Air Pillow, which is a perfect companion no matter how far you’re from home.

As the name suggests, it is extremely light in weight and can be compressed almost to the size of a wallet.

I know, it’s difficult to buy a product unless you have complete information on it. You will regret it if you order to the product, only to find later that it does not suit your wants.

So, I have spent hours on research, consulted various websites, and read many customer reviews to bring you an honest, detailed review of this masterpiece by Exped.

​Scroll down, to have all your questions answered and all your doubts cleared.

Exped Air Pillow UL Camping Pillow
21 Reviews
Exped Air Pillow UL Camping Pillow
  • Skin-friendly, polyester fabric
  • One FlatValve for inflation and deflation, to vent, the built-in drain pin is inserted into the valve
  • 2 eyelets for attaching to the mat, fits neatly into the hood of the sleeping bag
  • Asymmetrical shape: side sleepers (high position) and back/stomach (low position)
  • Repair kit and stuff sack included

A Brief Overview

Exped Air Pillow UL Camping Pillow

Exped has been taking care of campers since 1997, to provide them a comfortable sleep so that they can fully enjoy the experience of camping.

The pillow is one of the most lightweight camping pillows available in the market. It packs down small, almost to the size of a thin wallet.

It is designed in a manner so that your head stays in place. It is also equipped with a non-slippery backside, and can easily fit in the hoods of your sleeping bags.

More: Exped Down Pillow Review

The pillow is especially useful for long camping trips, or for hiking where carrying minimum luggage is our priority.

Who is it for?

The pillow is perfect for campers, hikers, and traveling enthusiast who don’t want to compromise their sleep outside.

Are you planning to go hiking? Or for a long camping trip?

Then no pillow can meet your wants as perfectly as this Xped Pillow. The pillow packs down small, almost to the size of a thin wallet. Put it in your backpack, and practically, it does not occupy space at all.

Also, it weighs around 1 to 2 oz in weight and is probably the lightest camping pillow ever. You can even carry it in the pockets of your jacket.

The pillow is much more suitable for people who sleep on their backs. The height of the pillow is not much, thus making it inappropriate for side sleepers.

Generally, side sleepers have to add extra clothes to increase the height of the pillow. Back sleepers, on the other hand, find the pillow comfortable as it is.

​So, this pillow is a good choice if you are a side sleeper.

Exped UL Pillow Review: Key Features

A variety of options to choose from

The pillow comes in two unique and beautiful colors.

  • Corn Yellow: The surface is yellow while the geometrical pattern is a lighter shade of yellow, giving it a subtle look.
  • Orange: The surface of the pillow is dark orange while the geometrical pattern is made with a dark grey color, which makes the pillow stand out.

The pillow comes in two sizes.

  • Exped Air Pillow Large: This Pillow measures 18.1*11.8*4.7 inches when inflated, and 4.7*2 inches when deflated. It weighs around 2.1 oz.
  • Exped Air Pillow Medium: The pillow measures 4.7*2 inches in the compact form and 15*10.6*4.3 inches in the inflated state. It weighs around 1.6 oz.

So, you can buy the size that suits you. Since both measure the same in the compact form, and there is not much difference in weight.

Air-Core Pillow

The Exped Pillow is an inflatable pillow with a flat valve which facilitates inflation.

It has two ports, one meant for inflation and another for deflating the pillow.

It also comes with an attached deflation pin which makes compressing the pillow a lot easier. All you need to do is insert the pin in the port while rolling the pillow up.

More: Trekology Aluft 1.0 Ultralight Inflating Pillow Review

However, there have been complaints that it is very difficult to fully inflate the pillow because of the design, due to they had to add extra clothes to increase height.

Anatomically shaped Gripskin surface

Exped Air Pillow UL Pillow

The surface of the pillow is anatomical in shape, meaning that the shape is such that if you put your head in the middle of the pillow, it will not slip off the edges.

However, this also means that if you sleep at the side of the pillow, then there are chances that you won’t find the pillow under your head when you wake up.

The Pillow is made of grip skin fabric, which has been honeycombed to improve the grip of the pillow.

More: Nemo Fillo Luxury Camping Pillow Review

On the downside, this grip skin fabric does not feel soft against the face, which reduces the level of comfort.

Thus, you will have to add a soft pillowcase or a fluffy jacket over the pillow to increase breathability and comfort.

Packs down to the size of a wallet

Ever heard of someone carrying their pillow in their pocket?

It may sound impossible, but Exped camping gear has made this possible.

After you deflate the pillow with the attached deflation pin and properly compress it into the stuff sack, it is almost the size of a small wallet. This can easily fit into the pocket of your jacket. And in your backpack, it occupies almost no space at all.


This Exped Air Pillow UL is quite easy to handle and maintain.

Unlike foam-based pillows, there is no need to store the pad in the uncompressed form. So it will not occupy much space in your bag, nor will it take up space at your home.

Also, the pillow can be easily washed by hand, so you don’t need to worry about how to keep the pillow clean.

More: Sea to Summit Aeros Pillow Premium Review

Is the pillow worth its price?

The Pillow costs around $38 to $46 USD depending on the size you decide to purchase and from where you purchase it.

This may sound a bit expensive when compared to other pillows, but the Exped Air Pillow has features which give it an edge over classic inflatable pillows.

​The pillow also comes with a 2-years Exped Warranty.

Pros and Cons


  • ​Packs down to the size of a thin wallet (4.7*2 inches)
  • ​Weighs only 1.6 to 2.1 oz
  • ​The anatomical design keeps your head in place
  • ​The surface is made of honeycombed grip skin fabric, which makes it non-slippery
  • ​Comes with a deflation pin to ease the process of packing it to the compact form


  • ​Fabric is not soft, and thus uncomfortable
  • ​Cannot be washed in a machine
  • ​Nearly impossible to inflate it completely

Customer Reviews

The product received a mixed response from buyers.

Most of the buyers loved the compact size to which the pillow could be reduced. They said that the pillow almost disappeared into their pack. This made it extremely easy to carry the pillow on hiking trips and for long camping tours. The pillow was light in weight, and yet tough.

Users of the Pillow also said that when expanded, the pillow could easily fit into the hood of their sleeping bags. This also ensured that the pillow didn’t slip away from beneath their head.

More: Sierra Designs DriDown pillow review

On the downside, however, some customers give negative feedback. They said that the Pillow was too noisy for their comfort. Also, the fabric felt like plastic and is not good for winter camping. They had to put a T-shirt or pillow cover over it for insulation and softness.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

Q. Does Exped provide any warranty for the product?

Answer. Yes. The Pillow comes with a 2-years Exped warranty.

Q. Where can I buy the pillow?

Answer. You can buy the pillow at e-commerce sites. I recommend that you do not fall for schemes and discounts and purchase the pillow only from a trusted e-commerce site like Amazon.

Q. I am a side sleeper. Is the pillow good for me?

Answer. The pillow does not have a good height, thus making it inappropriate for side sleepers. However, you may put a jacket over it or pile up some clothes to increase the height of the pillow.

Q. Can I wash the pillow in a washing machine?

Answer. No. The pillow should be washed by hand with a little soap and water. Also, take care that the valve is closed properly before you wash it.

Q. What is the use of the GripSkin fabric?

Answer. The Gripskin fabric provides friction, thus ensuring that the pillow does not slip under your head. However, this fabric is not soft enough for comfort, and thus requires a pillow cover or clothes.

More: Thermarest Compressible Pillow Review

Q. Is it difficult to inflate the pillow?

Answer. No. It is quite easy to inflate the pillow. Just open the valve and 2 to 3 adult breaths are enough to inflate it properly.

Q. How do I compress the pillow back?

Answer. To compress the pillow, use the attached deflation pin. Put it in the port, while rolling the pillow with your other hand. The pillow will get packed easily and in no time.

Some Useful Tips

  • Don’t inflate the pillow completely. Even if you want a good height, let a little bit of air out as that provides more cushioning. This also ensures that your head does not slip off the pillow while sleeping.
  • Make a pillowcase from a Smartwool shirt, put it over the Exped air pillow, and stuff a puffy jacket inside. This makes the pillow feel soft against the face.
  • Fit it inside the hood of your sleeping bag. That keeps the pillow fixed at one place.
  • When you take the pillow out of the stuff sack, fix the drawstring under the inflation cap. This way, you will not end up losing the stuff sack.

More: Klymit Luxe Pillow Review

Final Verdict

In my opinion, the pillow is capable of satisfying my wants.

I love going on long camping trips, and to avoid luggage, I often have to leave my foam based camping pillow at home. This spoils my trips.

The fact that the pillow can fit even in my pocket is a huge incentive for me to buy the product. This will ensure that I do not miss out on my sleep on those camping trips.

Also, I am a back sleeper, and thus, I prefer pillows of small height. This Exped Pillow is, therefore, a good choice for me.

Though there are drawbacks like the noise, there are also ways to overcome these drawbacks. A pillowcase not only helps with cushioning and increasing the height but also subsides the noise to some extent.

So, I recommend the product.

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Exped Air Pillow UL Review

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