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Make Your Own Therapeutic Warming Pillow

Weekend Well-Being: Make Your Own Therapeutic Warming Pillow

Heat therapy is so beneficial if you have menstrual cramps, sore or tight muscles, or sinus congestion. You can use a heating pad, but it's annoying to have it plugged in, and unsafe if you want to sleep with it. That's why those therapeutic warming pillows you pop in the microwave are so perfect. Instead of spending $20 to $60 buying one, you can make your own for much less.

To learn how


You'll need:

Piece of 100% cotton fabric, cut into a piece that's 22 x 10 inches
Piece of muslin fabric, cut into a piece that's 21 x 9 1/2 inches
1 3/4 to 2 cups of dried, whole, feed corn (not the popcorn kernels you buy from the grocery store)
1/2 cup dried peppermint leaves, rose petals, lavender, or other scented herb (optional)
4 inches Velcro
Straight pins
Sewing machine


  1. Make the inside of the pillow first. Fold the muslin in half and sew one of the short sides closed. Then turn it inside out so that sewn seam is on the inside.
  2. With a pen, make six lines on the muslin, each three inches apart, to divide your pillow into seven sections. Now sew over these lines starting at the folded end, but stop sewing about 1/2 an inch from the open end, so you'll have room left to fold and sew this part after you fill it.
  3. Now it's the fun part — filling your pillow. Fill each of the seven sections with whatever you've chosen, about 1/4 cup or so in each section. Cut a water bottle in half and use the top as a funnel to make this part easier. Fill them one at a time and place pins in the muslin to keep the filler from spilling out.
  4. Then fold the open ends inside, pin them together, and sew one seam along the long end of the muslin pillow. Then remove the pins.

  5. Now you're ready to make the long pillowcase for your muslin pillow. Fold the material in half so the pretty sides are inside. Make a seam on one of the short sides and on the long side. Now turn it inside out. To make the open end look neater, fold the ends in and make a seam. Then sew the Velcro on the inside edges of the open seams, one piece on the top, and the other piece on the bottom.

  6. Slip your muslin pillow into the pillowcase, close it shut with the Velcro and you're done! Just pop it in the microwave for a minute or two, and it'll stay warm for at least 20 minutes.
gothamgal gothamgal 8 years
Love this. Great diy.
Spectra Spectra 8 years
Renee--reusing the rice bags doesn't make bacteria grow in them, but you have to be careful not to overheat them (only put them in for 2 minutes at a time, max) or the rice grains will char a bit and it'll smell a little smoky.
aimeeb aimeeb 8 years
I've done this before. Love it!
Beaner Beaner 8 years
I'm totally going to make one. Great gift idea!
syako syako 8 years
I've had one made out of rice. Someone gave it as a gift, which I think is a neat idea. :)
marie-lee marie-lee 8 years
I've got one of these that contains wheat and lavender...never thought of making one myself.
Renees3 Renees3 8 years
flax seed works really well too. I made a bunch of these for christmas presents and everyone LOVED them. Flax seed is smooth and warms well. I don't remember what I read but I heard that reusing Rice over and over can make them yucky, like too much bacteria and such. Not sure though.
mamasitamalita mamasitamalita 8 years
my little brother made me one of these (with RICE) for Christmas a few years ago (my aunt helped with the sewing), but I love mine -- I pop it in the microwave for 1.5 to 2 minutes to put on sore muscles, and I've also used it in the winter to heat up my sheets (just rub it briskly over your fitted sheet before you get in and go to bed!)
Spectra Spectra 8 years
I have a couple of these, but they're a lot more basic: I take one of my husband's old tube socks and fill it with uncooked rice and tie up the end. You can microwave them over and over and they feel really nice on your neck when you're stressed out.
tlsgirl tlsgirl 8 years
This is such a great idea!
fuzzles fuzzles 8 years
I can't help but imagine someone filling the pillow with Orville Redenbachers! :rotfl: Great post, though!
i-heart-monster i-heart-monster 8 years
I made one with rice inside once and it worked well too. It's a little easier to come by than feed corn...
miss-malone miss-malone 8 years
superfoxml superfoxml 8 years
AWESOME idea! Thanks!
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