Before we start on a project which needs a lot of parts we need to make sure we can acquire them. So, I bought all my LEDs before even starting to design the PCB.
Like last year I wanted to go with APA102-2020s since they survive pretty much everything you throw at them. To give you some context, I commonly deal with WS2812/SK6812 modules for other projects and in my experience these modules have a huge downside: The bonding wires inside these don't survive being reflowed twice which is a no-go for a double sided PCB. The APA102-2020 module on the other hand is completely epoxied in, without loose bond wires. But they have a huge downside too: They are a PITA to reflow properly without bridging. The pads on the bottom are just too damn small:
But we have a new contender on the block, the WS2812C-2020. Like the APA102-2020 they are completely epoxied in and survive several reflows easily and more importantly they are super easy to even solder by hand, despite their small 2mm x 2mm size.