Side sleeping can be one of the most comfortable positions; lying down and sinking into a mattress, it is so nice to drift off into a long night of sleep.
While side sleeping can feel fantastic, not all mattresses are made for side sleeping; side sleepers are usually going to want a softer mattress that provides exceptional pressure relief. Since there are so many online mattresses out there, I wanted to compile a list of the best mattresses for side sleepers!
There is something here for everyone; those who prefer super soft memory foam and those who are ready to try something different like the Purple Hybrid Premier. Read on to find the best mattress for side sleepers!
Best For Lightweight Sleepers
The Nolah is a very comfortable mattress that should be a good match for light- and medium-weight side sleepers.
With the Helix mattresses, customers can choose from a variety of models and Helix will even customize a mattress to meet a person's needs; side sleepers should be able to get a mattress with great pressure relief.
The Layla is a flippable mattress that offers two firmnesses; all-in-all it is one of the most comfortable mattresses on the market and is a great match for side sleepers.
Excellent Pressure Relief
The Amerisleep AS4 features a thick layer of memory foam and should offer fantastic pressure relief for most side sleepers.
Supportive Memory Foam
Loom And Leaf
Loom And Leaf
The Loom And Leaf's high-density memory foam is a great match for side sleepers who want a bit more support.
Best For Multiple Positions
The Casper features a Zoned Support system that makes it an excellent match for those who change positions at night.
Best For Heavier Sleepers
Purple Hybrid Premier
Purple Hybrid Premier
The Purple Hybrid Premier 4" model is an excellent option for side sleepers who are on the heavier side.
Comfortable And Supportive
The Bear Hybrid features an excellent balance of comfort and support and should be a fantastic match for both side and back sleepers.
Best Mattresses For Side Sleepers Compared
I have reviewed a number of mattresses that claim to be good for side sleepers, and I have narrowed down the extensive list to my top eight!
Best For Lightweight Sleepers
The Nolah mattress features a proprietary AirFoam that is designed to relieve pressure better than memory foam; based on our pressure map test, this might be true – the Nolah relieved most pressure on my shoulders and hips. While larger people might find the Nolah mattress to be firmer, light- and medium-weight side sleepers should get fantastic pressure relief.
The Nolah is also a good option for hot sleepers as its Air Foam is made to assist with heat dissipation – some memory foam mattresses can trap heat, but this shouldn’t be an issue with the Nolah.
Finally, the Nolah is more affordable than many memory foam mattresses; those looking for a good comfortable deal should like the Nolah.
What Makes Nolah Stand Out?
- The AirFoam relieves a good amount of pressure, making this a good option for side sleepers.
- The Nolah is also responsive, so sleepers shouldn’t feel like they are getting stuck in the mattress.
- This should also be a particularly cool-sleeping mattress and shouldn’t make people heat up during the night.
People should also read the full Nolah review for more information.
Nolah has a VERY comfortable mattress that is especially good for side sleepers. You can get $125 off the Nolah by clicking the link below and using code MATTRESSCLARITY.
For those side sleepers who just don’t know what to get, Helix is here to help; the company is all about customization and flexibility and will actually put together a mattress to meet a sleeper’s specific needs.
Side sleepers can take a quiz on the Helix website, and Helix will put together the perfect mattress; customers can also decide to opt for the Helix Midnight or Helix Sunset, their two mattresses made just for side sleepers.
Looking for something a bit more luxury? Shoppers can make any Helix mattress into a “Luxe” model which will contain more premium components.
Lastly, each side of a Helix mattress is customizable, so sleeping partners can each get what they need on their side of the mattress.
What Makes Helix Stand Out?
- The Helix mattress can be customized to match whatever a particular sleeper is looking for.
- Both sides of the mattress can be customized, making the Helix an exceptional option for couples.
- Helix has numerous options for side sleepers that should provide excellent pressure relief.
Read the full Helix mattress review
Helix provides customizable mattresses that can be a great fit for any type of sleeper; customers can get $75 off a Helix mattress by clicking the link below and using code CLARITY75 at checkout or $125 off a mattress plus one other product with code CLARITY125 at checkout.
People are going to flip for this mattress – literally. The Layla is flippable and provides two firmnesses in one mattress; the firm side is an exceptional match for back and stomach sleeping.
However, the soft side is what side sleepers are going to want to focus on; it is about a 5.5/10 on the firmness scale and features 5″ of comfort material. Most side sleepers should sink into the soft memory foam and experience excellent pressure relief.
The Layla is simply one of the most comfortable mattresses I have reviewed – it’s memory foam really lets sleepers slowly sink into the mattress and feel any pressure melt away.
Finally, the Layla’s memory foam is infused with copper, a material that is both anti-microbial and cooling; side sleepers shouldn’t be sleeping hot on the Layla.
What Makes The Layla Stand Out?
- The Layla is an exceptionally comfortable mattress that should be a very good match for most side sleepers.
- The mattress is flippable, so people can choose from two firmnesses.
- The copper infusion should help with heat dissipation and keep the mattress from sleeping too hot.
Check out our full Layla mattress review.
Layla is an innovative mattress that happens to be one of the most comfortable mattresses I've ever slept on. You can get $110 off the Layla mattress by clicking the link below and then using code MCLARITY.
Excellent Pressure Relief
There is no one mattress for everyone – I subscribe to this and so does Amerisleep – they offer five memory mattresses of varying firmness. The AS1 is their softest model, and the AS5 is their firmest model – I personally love the AS4 because it is a fantastic match for side sleeping.
The AS4 features 4″ of memory foam that should provide fantastic pressure relief for side sleepers of many sizes – even side sleepers who are much heavier shouldn’t bottom out on the Amerisleep AS4.
The Amerisleep AS4’s memory foam is also bio-based and open-celled and should make the top of the mattress quite breathable; the mattress also features air channels and a Celliant cover which should also help with cooling.
Hot sleepers and side sleepers seeking exceptional pressure relief should definitely consider the Amerisleep AS4.
What Makes The Amerisleep AS4 Stand Out?
- The Amerisleep’s Celliant cover should help with cooling and can also improve circulation and help active people and athletes recover more quickly.
- The Amerisleep AS4 contains 4″ of soft memory foam that should offer a good amount of pressure relief.
- The cover, open-celled foams, and air channels should make the AS4 a particularly cool-sleeping mattress.
Learn more in our Amerisleep AS4 review.
Amerisleep is a perfect choice if you want a memory foam mattress but don't want to sleep cool. All their mattresses are very comfortable as well. You can get $250 off Amerisleep mattresses simply by clicking the link below.
Supportive Memory Foam
Loom And Leaf
Memory foam is great, but not everyone wants a mattress that gives in too easily; that’s where the Loom And Leaf comes in. It features two layers of high-density memory foam that offer more support and pushback than other types of memory foam.
Lying on the Loom And Leaf, the mattress feels firm at first – after a few moments, the mattress starts to soften and let one slowly sink into the mattress. Side sleepers should feel almost no pressure on their shoulders and hips.
At the same time, the Loom And Leaf provides a good amount of support for back sleepers and will fill in the gaps for many side sleepers.
Those side sleepers who want fantastic pressure relief with a good deal of support should take a look at the Loom And Leaf.
Why Makes Loom And Leaf Stand Out?
- The Loom And Leaf is a good option for side sleepers who need more support and pushback.
- The high-density memory foam found in the mattress are very durable and shouldn’t sag as quickly as other types of memory foam.
- Heavier sleepers should feel nice pressure relief on the Loom and Leaf mattress.
- The Loom and Leaf should not sleep too hot.
Check out our full Loom And Leaf mattress review
Loom And Leaf is a perfect choice for those looking for a luxury memory foam feel but don't want to sleep hot. Get the best current deal on Loom And Leaf simply by clicking the button below.
Best For Multiple Positions
The Casper stands out because of its Zoned Support system; basically, the center of the mattress is firmer than the top and bottom areas. Because of this, the mattress feels firmer when sleepers are in one position and softer in others.
This zoned construction makes the Casper an excellent option for multiple sleeping positions; back and stomach sleepers should feel well supported, and side sleepers should get the necessary pressure relief.
Those side sleepers who like to switch to their back or stomach during the night are going to enjoy the Casper mattress.
What Makes The Casper Stand Out?
- The mattress features a zoned construction that is softer under the shoulder, making it a good fit for side sleeping.
- The Casper should also be supportive enough for most back sleepers and some stomach sleepers.
- The mattress contains breathable foams that shouldn’t trap too much heat, so this should be a cooler-sleeping mattress.
Read the full Casper mattress review.
Casper is a great value that is also a great fit for all three sleeping positions. You can get 10% Off a Casper mattress simply by clicking the link below.
Best For Heavier Sleepers
The Purple mattresses’ hyper-elastic gel polymer is what sets them apart from their numerous bed-in-a-box competitors; it is a material that can be firm and supportive and also soft and pressure relieving.
The Purple Hybrid Premier 4″ model is the company’s most deluxe mattress and features a whopping 4″ of the gel grid – this thick comfort layer should ensure that even heavier side sleepers should get fantastic pressure relief without bottoming out on the mattress.
The proprietary gel grid is also one of the most durable materials I have come across; coupled with the steel coils, the Purple Hybrid Premier should be a longer-lasting mattress.
Larger side sleepers and those who are seeking a long-term investment should definitely consider the Purple Hybrid Premier 4″ model.
What Makes The Purple Hybrid Premier Mattress Stand Out?
- The 4″ of hyper-elastic gel polymer makes the Purple Hybrid Premier an excellent option for heavier side sleepers.
- Side sleepers of pretty much any size should get the pressure relief they need on this mattress.
- The gel grid and coils allow for a massive amount of airflow, allowing the mattress to be temperature neutral.
- The gel grid is exceptionally durable and should not sag like some foams are known to do.
Read our full Purple Hybrid Premier mattress review
The Purple Hybrid Premier 4" is a perfect choice if you are a side sleeper, are looking for a long-term investment, and are a hot sleeper. Get the best deal on your new Purple mattress, plus get a free pillow when you click the button below.
Comfortable And Supportive
The Bear Hybrid mattresses features materials that offer a perfect balance of comfort and support; the Comfort Foam in the top layer is soft and comfortable, and the 8″ coils are quite supportive.
This design makes the Bear Hybrid a fantastic option for side sleepers – the mattress performed quite well on our pressure map test, and I personally felt little pressure on my shoulders and hips while side sleeping on the Bear Hybrid. At the same time, the coils should support back sleepers while the Comfort Foam offers some significant contouring.
On top of the mattress, there is a Celliant Cover; this material has been shown to improve blood flow and speed up recovery and even help with cooling!
There’s a lot to love about the Bear Hybrid, so those who desire a mattress that is comfortable and supportive should check it out!
What Makes The Bear Hybrid Stand Out?
- The Bear Hybrid features an excellent balance of comfort and support; it should relieve pressure well while still being able to handle heavier weights.
- The Comfort Foam should provide superior pressure relief, making this an excellent option for side sleepers.
- The Celliant cover and open-celled foam should work together to keep sleepers from overheating at night.
Read the full Bear Hybrid mattress review
The Bear Hybrid has a great balance of comfort and support. It is a great match for back and side sleepers. You can get $225 off the Bear mattress by clicking the link below and using code CLARITY225 at checkout.
Best For Heavy Side Sleepers
There are so many things to take into consideration when shopping for a mattress, and size and weight are so very important. Given that I am 5’9” and weigh 160 lbs, I thought it was a good idea to get the perspective of a larger person. That’s why I asked Marten, who is 6’7” and weighs 250 lbs to give his take on these side sleeping mattresses:
Larger side sleepers should be seeking a mattress with a thicker comfort layer; this should ensure that they don’t “bottom out” on the mattress. Four of these eight mattresses meet this criterium and should be an exceptional match for larger side sleepers.
First off, the Purple Hybrid Premier 4” model features a hyper-elastic gel polymer that is simultaneously pressure-relieving and supportive; the material cradles me when I am on my side so that I feel almost no pressure on my shoulders and hips. I almost feel weightless when I am side sleeping on the Purple Hybrid Premier, and I definitely do not bottom out.
The Amerisleep AS4 also has a very thick comfort layer; this time it consists of bio-based memory foam. I sink into the top layer and feel very little pressure on my shoulders and hips, and I do not hit the support layers beneath the memory foam.
The excellent thing about the Helix mattresses is their customization and mattress options; they make mattresses for all different types of sleepers, large people included. The Helix Plus is their model designed with heavy sleepers in mind and should be a good match for those who sleep on their sides.
As Joe mentioned, the Loom And Leaf features high-density memory foams that feel firm at first but slowly soften up after a few moments – side sleeping, I feel myself slowing sink into the mattress, and I get great pressure relief on my shoulders and hips.
Best For Those Who Sleep Hot
People who sleep hot and also sleep on their side might find it particularly difficult to find a mattress that is a good fit – memory foam can be a fantastic option for side sleepers, but it is known for trapping heat. While side sleepers might get the pressure relief they are looking for, they might find themselves waking up hot and sweaty!
Luckily, I believe that the Nolah mattress is a great fit for both side sleepers and hot sleepers as well – Nolah features exceptional pressure relief and its proprietary foam is also designed to dissipate heat.
Best For Those With Neck Pain
If people have neck pain and they sleep on their side, it is quite possible this is due to their pillow, not their mattress – if someone’s pillow isn’t supportive enough, then their neck will be angled downward in an uncomfortable position, and this can easily cause neck pain issues. Similarly, if someone’s pillow is particularly thick, then their neck might be pushed upwards, causing even more annoying pain issues.
So, instead of recommending a mattress to alleviate neck pain, I would rather encourage people to check out our article on the best pillows for side sleepers – any of the recommendations in our informative roundup should help alleviate any sort of neck pain issues that people may have.
Best For Those With Back Pain
First off, people who struggle with back pain should consult with a doctor for a professional opinion; this information does not constitute medical advice, and I can only give my general opinion on the relationship between back pain and mattresses.
Typically, if people want to avoid back pain, they will want something that is more supportive and potentially a little firmer, and this is definitely the case for back/stomach sleepers. It gets a little tricky when it comes to side sleeping, however, because side sleepers are usually going to want to find a mattress that is on the softer side with a thicker comfort layer.
Essentially, those with back pain are going to want a measured balance of pressure and relief and support; they don’t want the comfort layer to be too soft or too thin. Therefore, they should seek a mattress that relieves pressure enough for them to be comfortable but is also very supportive at the same time; there aren’t too many mattresses out there, but I would check out the Purple 3, because the mattress is very supportive, yet the gel material is great at relieving pressure at the same time.
Best For Those With Hip Pain
If someone struggles with hip pain, it might be because of their mattress. However, I would still first consult a doctor before anything else – again, this information does not constitute medical advice.
If people have hip pain because of their mattress, it is either because it is too firm or they are “bottoming out – bottoming out occurs when someone presses through the top comfort layer(s) and hits the firmer support layer(s) beneath. Those who are bottoming out should be looking for a mattress with a thicker comfort layer – also, if the top layer of a mattress is super soft, people can still feel a lot of firmness if they bottom out.
I think the Amerisleep AS4 or the Purple Hybrid Premier 4″ model are especially fantastic matches for hip pain because they relieve pressure well and have a thicker comfort layer – they are softer than average and sleepers don’t really run the risk of bottoming out (unless someone is extremely heavy).
Best Memory Foam Mattress
It’s no coincidence that there are multiple memory foam mattresses on this list – memory foam does a fantastic job of relieving pressure when compared with other types of materials. So which of these memory foam mattresses should people get?
If people are looking for the truest memory foam feel where they slowly sink into their mattress and pressure really melts away, then they should take a look at the Layla mattress. The Layla is a flippable mattress, and the soft side is definitely softer-than-average and does an excellent job of eliminating any pressure on the shoulders and hips.
A lot of memory foam owners complain about “sleeping hot,” and that is because memory foam can trap heat more than other mattress materials – if people want a memory foam mattress but are worried about sleeping hot, then they should look at the Amerisleep AS4. There are five different ways it will help people sleep cool at night, and it probably does the best job of any memory foam mattress in terms of addressing the issue of sleeping hot.
If people want a mattress with a little bit of firmness but that is still a good choice for side sleepers, then they should take a look at the Loom And Leaf mattress; it has a unique feel where there is some initial firmness, but then the high-density memory foam layers start to kick in and the pressure goes away.
Best Latex Mattress
Latex mattresses are becoming more and more popular, and natural latex mattresses are really the only way for people to get a truly organic mattress, despite what some companies may claim on their website. Many companies will claim that they have “green” products, but in reality, those claims are dubious at best. Natural latex mattresses, however, are actually quite “green.”
Latex mattresses have a good amount bounce to them, are durable, and they also conform well to the curves of the body – in addition, the foam is open-celled, meaning they are more breathable than many other types of mattresses. At the same time, latex mattresses don’t relieve pressure as well as memory foam does; there’s a reason why there are no latex mattresses on my main list in this article.
Having said that, I do feel that the Zenhaven mattress is a great latex mattress pick for side sleepers; it is a flippable mattress with two firmness levels in one mattress. If people sleep on their side, then they should definitely choose the soft side of this mattress – the pressure relief is solid, especially for a latex mattress, and it’s just a solid mattress overall.
Best Innerspring Mattress
Innerspring mattresses are very popular and are what most sleepers are used to – the spring support system can make them good choices for back and stomach sleepers, but the materials on top of the springs are what can make them good for side sleepers too.
The Winkbeds mattress is a great innerspring option for side sleeping -the coil-on-coil system makes the mattress great for contouring to the curves of the body, and the pillow top is nice and soft and has a great feel to it that I think a lot of people will really like on their side. While this mattress didn’t quite make my overall list, it is still a great choice for side sleepers who would like to get an innerspring mattress.
Best Budget Mattress
From my personal experience, budget mattresses aren’t always the best for side sleeping because they don’t have many comfortable materials in them – usually, they are really firm and don’t have much of a comfort layer. This can make it difficult for side sleepers to find a good mattress for under $700.
Having said that, the Casper Essential is a good budget pick for side sleepers, because it has a lot of the same design concepts as the original Casper does but comes at a much more affordable price. Consumers still get 3″ of premium foams, including a second layer of memory foam – also, the mattress overall is softer-than-average, and it performed well when I did a pressure map test.
More On Pressure Relief
If people sleep on their side, they are going to be naturally putting a lot of pressure on their hips, shoulders, and neck, which can cause tension throughout the spine.
To sleep comfortably, people want a mattress that is soft enough to relieve those pressure points; foam mattresses tend to be great at relieving pressure points and can be ideal for side sleepers.
If a mattress is too firm, it will cut off a lot of the blood circulation in the body, and it will potentially cause major aches and pains because it doesn’t contour to the widest points in the hips and shoulders – it could cause side sleepers to wake up in the middle of the night and change positions as well.
More On Spinal Alignment
It is critical for people’s health that they find a mattress that contours well to their body and supports the natural alignment of their spine. If people sleep on their side and the mattress is too firm, their neck won’t be properly supported and their spine will be thrown off its natural alignment; this could lead to back and neck pain fairly easily, which may compound over time.
If the mattress is too soft, people could sink in too much and their spine will be too curved, which could similarly lead to pain across the body; a mattress that is too soft is not ideal either, because the person will sink too for into the mattress and throw the spine out of alignment.
RELATED: Best pillows for side sleepers
This is indeed a lot of information, but side sleepers should definitely take note – a mattress with excellent pressure relief can mean the difference between a night in dreamland and a night of tossing and turning.
How firm should a mattress be if you sleep on your side?
Side sleepers should be looking for a mattress that is softer-than-average; on a scale of 1-10, a good side sleeping mattress should be between a 5 and 6.5.
A mattress with this firmness should relieve pressure on the shoulders and hips so that one can sleep through the night without any pain in those areas.
What mattress is best for side sleepers who have back pain?
The Level Sleep should be a fantastic match for side sleepers who struggle with back pain; it features a zoned construction that offers excellent lumbar support and pressure relief under the shoulders.
This should ensure that side sleepers should get the pressure relief they need while staying in proper neutral alignment.
What type of mattress is best for side sleepers?
When it comes to side sleeping, memory foam is one of the best materials out there; it lets sleepers sink in while relieving pressure on the shoulders and hips.
An innerspring mattress with a soft pillow top can also be a good option as long as the comfort layer is thick enough to prevent bottoming out.
Most side sleepers are going to want to stay away from latex mattresses as they are usually firmer and don’t offer quite the pressure relief that other types of mattresses do.
Are innerspring mattresses good for side sleepers?
Innerspring mattresses may be a decent fit for side sleeping if they are soft enough; look for an innerspring mattress that has a thicker comfort layer on top or even consider a hybrid mattress that incorporates some type of soft foam in the comfort layer.
Joe Auer is the editor of Mattress Clarity. He mainly focuses on mattress reviews and oversees the content across the site.
He likes things simple and take a straightforward, objective approach to his reviews. Joe has personally tested nearly 250 mattresses and always recommends people do their research before buying a new bed. He has been testing mattresses for over 5 years now, so he knows a thing or two when it comes to mattress selection. He has been cited as an authority in the industry by a number of large publications.
Joe has an undergraduate degree from Wake Forest University and an MBA from Columbia University.
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