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Side sleeping is considered the healthiest sleeping position, and it is the most popular position with 56% of people sleeping on their sides in either an elongated or fetal pose. Shoulder and hip pain can be an issue for side sleepers if their mattress isn’t suitable for sleeping on the side. Issues with spinal alignment can occur in this position if the mattress doesn’t allow their shoulders and hips to sink in while supporting the midsection. Pressure points can be reduced in sensitive regions of the body, such as the lower back, neck, hips, and shoulders by using the right mattress. Furthermore, side sleepers are less likely to snore and if sleep apnea is a concern, sleeping on your side makes it occur less often.
Now, to enjoy all these sleep and health benefits you need to buy a mattress that is best for this position. Some people prefer a soft mattress because it keeps the pressure off their hips and shoulders and provides them with adequate cushioning. Some heavyweight sleepers who prefer to sleep on their sides go for a firm mattress because they don't want to sink in too much.
Research has also shown that side sleeping is better for your heart and it is an excellent choice for reducing sleep apnea as well. In addition, side sleeping reduces snoring. Approximately two thirds of the people prefer side sleeping; more on that in the buying guide section.
Now we will give you our recommended top 6 best mattresses for side sleepers.
6 Best Mattress for Side Sleepers 2019
Best affordable luxury hybrid choice
Lifetime/ 365 nights
Best gel memory foam choice (and for the money)
6.5 (Medium Firm)
Lifetime/ 365 nights
If you want Tempur-Pedic feel (but cheaper)
5.5 (Medium) to 8 (Firm)
15 years/120 nights
Best for Shoulder/Hip Pain
4 (Medium Soft on 1 Side) and 7 (Firm on the other side)
If you want an extra plush mattress
4 (Extra Plush)
Depends on reseller
Purchase using FSA or FSA account
1.DreamCloud Mattress – Best affordable luxury hybrid choice
DreamCloud’s eight-layered hybrid mattress is best for the sleepers who want a luxury feel and high thickness for their sleeping surfaces. The external layer of this mattress is Eurotop blended with cashmere. It provides you with an ultimately luxurious feeling.
Underneath this layer, there is a memory foam layer infused with gel, and it gives an excellent cooling effect and high contouring support to your body. The next layer is made of natural latex. DreamCloud has used natural latex because it improves core support and durability. Plus, it is hypoallergenic as well. So people who have allergies due to dust and mites will feel very comfortable with this mattress.
The supporting layer of the memory foam in this mattress offers high conformance and contouring. The layer can quickly adjust itself according to your body shape. After that comes, a memory foam layer with high density and it provides you with and that hug-like feel that most side sleepers love.
- It is designed and developed with top quality materials.
- DreamCloud mattress is covered by a 25-year warranty and a 365-night trial period.
- The coil system in the support core along with Eurotop cover keeps the mattress highly breathable.
- The memory foam in the comfort layers maintains its high conformance.
- The mattress comes with 6.5 medium firm rating and is best suited for side sleepers.
- Maybe too tall for some customers
- Price is a little high
2.Nectar Mattress – Best gel memory foam choice (and for the money)
If you enjoy sleeping on gel-infused memory foam, then there is nothing better than the Nectar mattress at this price point. Nectar mattresses come with a quilted cover that makes the sleeping surface highly breathable. It has a blend of long-staple cotton and Tencel Lyocell. It means that in addition to being highly breathable, the cover of this mattress is hypoallergenic. The top layer is made of gel foam that works exceptionally well with the cover to keep you fresh during your sleep. You won’t be sweaty or sticky from sleeping hot in the morning with this mattress.
Nectar mattress is 11-inches thick, and you can buy it in various sizes to fit your needs. As mentioned above the top layer of this mattress is made of gel foam. Gel foam is good at providing high breathability and comfort along with extra loft.
The next layer of this mattress is Nectar’s signature Adaptive Hi Core memory foam layer. It comes with medical grade cooling properties that regulate your temperature during sleep. Furthermore, its development doesn’t involve hazardous chemical substances. The mattress is approved under CertiPUR-US® and OEKO-TEX certifications.
Nectar is a wonderful choice for side sleepers and for combination sleepers and side sleepers who sleep with a partner who doesn’t sleep on their side because the mattress works well for all sleep positions.
- Nectar mattress is best suited for side sleepers due to its high conformance.
- Nectar mattress comes with a lifetime warranty and 365-night trial period.
- The mattress is OEKO-TEX and CertiPUR-US® certified.
- It is the highly breathable mattress that keeps your body temperature regulated at night.
- There is only one firmness level to choose from so if you want a firmer or softer mattress, Nectar won’t be the best choice.
3.Loom & Leaf Mattress – If you want a Tempur-Pedic feel (but cheaper)
The memory foam mattresses from Loom & Leaf are known for providing degrees of high comfort and proper spinal alignment. The mattresses come with a quilted foam cover made from organic cotton. The topmost layers of the mattress are designed to conform and contour to the curves of your body.
The top layer of the comfort system is made of convoluted foam which improves conformance and support. This layer is laminated with cooling gel to reduce the heating effects of memory foam. The second layer in this system is high-density foam for additional comfort, support, and durability.
The support core of Loom & Leaf features polyfoam with the top transition, and after that, there is a second layer of polyfoam with high density to keep the mattress stable and durable. Loom & Leaf provides its customers with two different firmness levels. One of them is 5.5 which is medium, and the other one is eight which is firm.
The components used in the construction and development of both versions are the same. Loom & Leaf’s mattresses are excellent for side sleepers because they both provide excellent conformance and support for your body.
- The comfort layer is designed to provide maximum conformance and support for your spine.
- The support core offers stability and it limits motion transfer.
- The cover and the top layer of gel foam work together to prevent overheating during the night.
- Loom & Leaf mattresses come with a 15-year warranty and a 120-night sleep trial.
- Loom & leaf mattresses are prone to off-gassing.
- The mattresses do not provide good edge-to-edge support. If you need to sit on the side of the bed before you stand up or transfer to a wheelchair, it might not be the right mattress for you.
4. Layla Mattress – Best for Shoulder/Hip Pain
Layla mattresses are all about the ability to enjoy your life. Without a good night’s sleep, it’s difficult to be your best. Layla wants to help you be the best you can be. The best part is that Layla provides two firmness levels in one mattress. Simply flip the mattress to change the firmness level. Whether you want to sleep on a soft or a firm mattress, you can do it on the 10” Layla.
The mattress cover is so soft that you’ll want to sleep directly on it. The cover includes THERMOgel that helps keep you cool and wicks away perspiration.
Layla’s goal is to help you get a great night’s sleep, so you can live your best possible life when you are awake.
The copper-infused layers are excellent at providing support and contouring while the use of copper improves the overall temperature regulation of the mattress. Copper is good at heat conductivity, and for this reason, it has been infused in the Memory Foam layer to enable you to sleep cool at night.
The first layer on the soft side is 3” of copper-infused Memory Foam. The second layer on the soft side is constructed from special foam that increases air flow and provides additional support and spinal alignment. This layer has a firmness score of 4-5 (medium soft). The comfort layer on the other side is also made of memory foam with copper infusions, but it is 1-inch thick and has a firmness score of 7 (firm). Both the comfort layers share the support core of this mattress which is made of poly-foam to provide stability and reduce motion transfer regardless of which side of the mattress you sleep on.
The flippable construction of Layla mattress provides versatility you won’t find in other mattresses. Both sides provide pressure and pain relief. The soft side is excellent for side sleepers. Specifically designed to relieve pressure around your shoulders, hips, and lower back, it allows you to sleep comfortably on your side. These features and the low price, 120-night sleep trial and lifetime (pro-rated) warranty makes Layla a good choice.
- Layla mattress is covered under a lifetime warranty and a 120-night sleep trial.
- The flippable design provides two firmness options in one mattress.
- Layla allows you to sleep cool while enjoying the benefits of memory foam.
- Both sides provide excellent support for your body while you sleep.
- Layla mattress does have an issue of off-gassing.
5. Sealy Posturepedic Hybrid Mattress – If you want an extra-plush mattress
The Posturepedic Hybrid mattress by Sealy is an extra plush mattress for those of you who prefer that cloud-like feel during their sleep. The comfort system of this hybrid is equipped with memory foam that is gel infused, and it provides extra conformance and close contouring to keep your spine aligned and handle pressure points with ease.
The coil system in the support core is focused on providing stability and support to your body during your sleep time. The comfort layer features Sealy’s signature Cooling Conformance memory foam with infused gel. It reduces motion transfer and improves conformance to provide you with a relaxing sleeping surface.
The top is stretched tightly to provide a smooth, flat sleeping surface. This combo enhances the conformance of the mattress and enables you to sleep with complete serenity during the night. This fabric also plays a significant role in boosting the airflow throughout the mattress for additional breathability.
In addition to that, there is Sealy’s signature 3.5-inch thick SolidEdge border to provide you with good edge support. This thick border enables you to use the entire mattress and provides you with a solid surface for seating as well. Your purchase is covered under a 10-year warranty from Sealy.
- The hybrid mattress from Sealy provides you with that cloud-like feel that you prefer for sleeping.
- The top layer of this mattress is made of gel foam to provide maximum temperature regulations and pressure relief.
- There is a breathable fabric between comfort system and the support core to boost airflow across the mattress and improve the conformance of the top layer.
- The support core has a coil system that is very responsive; it adjusts itself according to the curves of your body.
- The mattress is covered under a 10-year warranty.
- It provides excellent edge-to-edge support.
- It doesn’t have a sleep trial
- It may be the most expensive option.
- It doesn’t provide much lumbar support.
6. Level Sleep – Best for purchase using HSA or FSA account
The Level Sleep mattress was designed with three zones (LEVELsoft™, LEVELmedium™, and LEVELfirm™) which provide side sleepers with soft cushy spaces for their shoulders and hips and firm support for their back. This scientifically developed design keeps your spine aligned which reduces morning stiffness and pain and reduces the amount of tossing and turning you do because of discomfort.
If you wake up or become restless because your shoulders or hips hurt from laying on them, Level Sleep could ease the pain in pressure points associated with side sleeping. As a side sleeper, I’ve wished for a mattress with a cutout where my shoulder could rest without the weight of my body. The LEVELsoft™ layer accomplishes the effect I long wanted by making the area where the shoulder rests significantly softer than the area where your torso rests. The LEVELfirm™ area holds your main body higher on the mattress and keeps its weight off your shoulders.
Made with healthy materials that are also ecologically responsible, you won’t be kept awake with guilt or worry about the impact of your mattress on the environment or your health.
With almost no motion transfer, you’ll also be comfortable sleeping with a pet or a partner. The washable cotton cover is cool and removable. Made with foams that can breathe, it sleeps cooler than memory foams made with closed cell designs.
Clinically tested for its impact on back pain and sleep quality, Level Sleep can qualify for reimbursement from your Flexible Spending Account or your Health Care Spending Account thus providing tax benefits.
- Zoned firmness levels designed to ease back pain and increase comfort for side sleepers
- Backed by a 365-night sleep trial
- Supported by a lifetime (Forever) warranty
- Potential tax advantaged purchase using FSA and HSA accounts
- Clinically proven improvements in sleep quality
- A little more expensive than other mattresses if you can’t use your HSA or FSA spending account
- Not the best choice for heavier sleepers or stomach sleepers who carry excess weight in their stomach area
- The edge support isn’t as good as some other options
Things You Need to Know Before Buying
Different side sleeping positions
As we mentioned above in the introduction of this post, approximately two-thirds of people prefer a side sleeping position. A fun survey was done at a sleep festival in the United Kingdom. They created funny names for side sleeping positions including Fetal, Yearner, Sprinter, and Log as well as cute names for back and stomach sleepers including, Soldier and Starfish for back sleepers and free-fall for stomach sleepers. The following chart reflect the percentage of side sleepers who prefer each position.
Another common sleeping position among the side sleepers is Sprinter where while sleeping on their side one of their sleeper’s leg is curled. Now let’s briefly discuss each one of them.
In this side sleeping position, both of the sleeper’s legs are bent at the knees and their back is hunched. This creates a curled look which is very similar to an infant in the womb. More than 40% of side sleepers rest in this sleeping position.
In this position, the arms of the sleeper are stretched out while the legs and back remain straight. About 5% of side sleepers prefer this position when they sleep.
A log sleeper likes to sleep with his/her legs stretched and back straight. Approximately 14% of the side sleepers like to sleep in this position.
It is the least favorite sleep position for side sleepers. Side Sleeping Sprinters curl one of their legs while they sleep and have their back and arms straight while the other leg is stretched to the fullest. Only about 3% of the side sleepers sleep in this position.
The log and yearner positions prevent rotation of the pelvis during sleep. The lack of rotation and ease of movement might result in misalignment of the spine which can ultimately cause pressure points and pain. Therefore, the Yearner and Log positions may not be the best side sleeping positions.
What must you know about sleeping on your side?
|Body Weight of Side Sleeper||Best Suited Firmness Range||Discussion|
|<130 lbs.||Medium Soft / Plush Soft||People, who weigh below average or less than 130 lbs. do not sink within their mattress. A firm mattress will not be comfortable for them.|
|130 lbs. – 220 lbs.||Medium – Medium Firm||People, who weigh within the 130 lbs. and 220 lbs. prefer medium mattresses (neither soft nor firm).|
|>220 lbs.||Medium Firm / Firmer||People over 220 lbs. will sink too much in a soft mattress and for them, a firm mattress is a good option.|
What do you need to know about the best mattress for side sleeping?
People who like to sleep on their sides need a mattress that offers excellent contouring and support to keep their spine adequately aligned during sleep. Therefore, firmness is the most significant element that you need to consider when purchasing a mattress. However, you should determine the level of firmness according to your bodyweight.
The firmness rating is placed on a scale from 1 to 10 where 1 is the softest while 10 is the firmest. Most of the mattresses that you will find on the market these days fall between 3 and 8 on the firmness rating scale. The best rating for a side sleeper is somewhere in the middle 5-6, unless they are heavy.
The mid-level firmness provides the side sleeper with improved support and contouring, and it keeps the spine aligned during sleep. The second most important point to consider here is the bodyweight of the sleeper.
Which mattress type is best for a side sleeper?
Selecting the best mattress for a side sleeper is based on three crucial factors. First is the firmness level, the second is the weight of the sleeper, and the third is the materials used in the construction of the mattress.
You must understand that a mattress that is equipped with coils made of steel within its support core is going to feel entirely different as compared to the mattresses made of foam and latex. They all have a unique response and feel and they also have different levels of durability and expected lifespan.
- Memory foam
Memory foam is probably the best mattress for side sleepers. The primary reason behind that is it has an excellent ability to conform and contour according to the body of the sleeper. Your body needs to be correctly aligned, and with a firmness level appropriate to your bodyweight. Memory foam mattresses can be the ultimate solution. Nevertheless, they also come with that hug-like feeling that some people prefer while others don’t. Due to this feeling, memory foams tend to sleep hotter as compared to its counterparts.
Innerspring mattresses are excellent for their breathability. The reason behind that is the coil system in the support core improves the overall airflow across the mattress. If you want to sleep cool, then this is the ideal option for you. However, when it comes to conformance, innersprings don’t perform as well as other options.
Innersprings are not able to properly contour according to the shape of your body, and for this reason, they are more useful for back or stomach sleepers as compared to side sleepers. However, if you love the feel of innersprings but prefer to sleep on your side, then you can always add a topper to provide support that conforms to your body.
Memory foams have an advantage over innersprings when it comes to conformance and body contouring. However, the demerit of foam is that you might feel hot sleeping on it and, in some cases, rotations and ease of movement are a concern. This is where latex has the advantage.
Latex tends to keep your body temperature regulated while you are on it and it also reduces pressure in the areas that are supporting your body very well. These traits make it an excellent option to choose for side sleepers. Nevertheless, latex is more expensive as compared to memory foam or innerspring.
Hybrid mattresses have innersprings in their support core while the comfort layer is either made of memory foam or latex. Hybrid mattresses provide the best of both worlds for side sleepers. They deliver maximum conformance through their top layer and excellent support and breathability through their support core. Hybrids are good at handling pressure points, but they are the most expensive mattress as well.
The winner of this roundup of top 6 best mattresses for side sleepers is the DreamCloud mattress [Use code BMR200 to get $200 OFF-limited time]. It not only provides you with excellent support and conformance but also handles the pressure points very well. The cover material is made of hypoallergenic materials and prevents irritation from allergies.
Being a side sleeper, you need to focus on the firmness level of the mattress. Moreover, your body weight also plays a critical role because a too soft mattress is not ideal for people who weigh over 220 lbs.
The third factor you need to consider is the mattress type. Memory foam would be the best option for side sleepers, if they didn’t sleep hot. Innersprings solve the issue of hotness but they don’t provide good conformance. On the other hand, latex and hybrids offer you the best of both worlds, but they are expensive. Therefore, the DreamCloud hybrid is the best choice for side sleepers.