Looking for the best mattress for side sleepers? We’ve got you covered.
Everyone has their favorite way to sleep, and sometimes — even with the best will in the world — we drift off to sleep in one position only to wake up and find that during sleep our body has naturally shifted into a different position.
When it comes to general health and well being some sleeping positions are better than others – so what about if you naturally sleep on your side?
Experts tell us that the best position to sleep in is on our backs as this keeps our head, neck and spine correctly aligned, preventing putting weight on pressure points and avoiding any curvature which can lead to back and neck pain or headaches.
It can even reduce the risk of wrinkles!
However, not everyone is a natural back sleeper, and many people find it impossible to fall asleep on their backs — let alone stay in that position all night.
Research shows that the vast majority of people find it easier to fall asleep on their side, or roll onto their side as they move about during the night.
So what does it mean for you if you are someone that tends to naturally sleep on your side?
Benefits of Side Sleeping
The good news is that while sleeping on your back may be the best position to sleep in, there are lots of benefits to sleeping on your side too — provided you have the correct posture support from your mattress and pillow.
Sleeping on your side reduces the likelihood of snoring and sleep apnea, and when in this position the spine is elongated, which can help relieve back pain.
Pregnant women are advised to sleep on their side as it takes pressure off the lower back, and when sleeping on the left side increases blood flow to the heart which is good for mum and good for baby.
Are you a left or a right side sleeper?
It may sound crazy, but sleeping on your left or right side makes a difference to health benefits while you’re snoozing.
Sleeping on your left side can reduce acid reflux and alleviate heartburn, while sleeping on your right side can actually make heartburn worse.
It can also help improve bowel problems such as irritable bowel syndrome and constipation, as well as aiding digestion.
That said, there is also a risk of putting strain on internal organs including the liver, stomach, and lungs when sleeping on your left side, and it can often result in a numb arm if your position cuts off blood circulation.
Features of a Mattress that’s Best for Side Sleepers
So you’re a side sleeper, and you really need to get that all important restorative sleep for mind, body, and soul to be healthy, happy, and full of energy.
To achieve the best sleep possible, you’re going to need a mattress that is adapted to your sleeping needs.
Here are the features you should be looking for in a mattress for side sleepers…
A great mattress is an investment that should last you for many years to come, so it’s vital to choose a good quality mattress that won’t wear out quickly, and that will continue to provide you with a fantastic nights sleep over a long period of time.
During sleep your body needs to be correctly cushioned to ensure that your spine stays in optimal alignment, so the mattress you choose must provide adequate support — particularly for the shoulders and hips.
Mattresses with a spongy responsive comfort layer are ideal, as this allows hips and shoulders to sink into the mattress to the same degree, alleviating pressure points and keeping the spine as straight as possible.
Firmness refers to the overall firmness of a mattress, irrespective of the level of support.
The majority of side sleepers will find a medium to medium firm mattress the most comfortable, although heavier sleepers may find that a slightly firmer mattress works better for them.
Always test your mattress if you can to ensure you are making the choice that will be suit you best in the long term.
As we sleep we change position, so we need a mattress that will support our bodies despite these shifts in movement.
Mattresses made from materials with a good level of resiliency which retake their original shape quickly when weight is removed makes it easier to switch sides and modify sleeping position, and ensure maximum possible support at all times.
What Materials are Best?
When you’re considering buying a mattress it’s well worth checking all the real details behind the jargon to find out exactly what materials the mattress is made from.
Mattresses made from quality natural materials are best, such as organic cotton and wool, and natural latex, as they are hypoallergenic and breathable, and will keep temperatures regulated throughout the night and allow skin to breather, as well as being naturally antibacterial.
Synthetic foams and materials can be heavily laden with toxic chemicals and volatile organic compounds (VOCs) which are damaging to health and may cause skin irritation or respiratory problems.
A mattress made from natural latex foam is a good choice for side sleepers, as it will provide the necessary support, resiliency, and firmness, without any unpleasant side effects of synthetic foam.
Features of a Bad Mattress for Side Sleepers
When choosing a mattress for side sleepers it is easy to get overwhelmed by the huge variety of choice available.
If in doubt, here’s our list of 5 main features you should avoid when selecting your new mattress…
Made from chemical laden synthetic materials
Insufficient support for hips and shoulders
Made from poor quality materials that won’t last
Too firm or not firm enough
Sprung coil mattress which can put pressure on the hips and shoulders
Mattress Cost Guide
Prices for mattresses vary wildly depending on size, brand, what materials they are made from, if they incorporate high tech features, and more.
However, no matter what your budget you should be able to find a decent mattress to suit your needs. Probably the least you should consider spending is about $500.
Mattresses at this price will be basic, but if you shop around it is possible to find some good deals.
Pushing your budget up to $1000 will give you access to higher quality mattresses and open up more options. If you can afford it, spending $1500 or more will allow you to choose from more luxurious, high end alternatives.
The Best Mattresses for Side Sleepers
Nectar Queen Mattress
With ‘just right’ medium firmness thanks to 5 different layers of CertiPUR-US Certified cooling gel foam and memory foam free from chemical nasties, the Nectar Queen Mattress is ideal for side sleepers.
Soft and comfortable yet giving good spinal support, the memory foam molds itself to the contours of the body and disperses weight evenly, and the gel foam, removable Tencel cotton cover, temperature control technology, and breathable base layer ensure good air circulation, ensuring you sleep cool.
This mattress also features dust mite protection and is shipped with 2 free pillows.
The perfect firmness for side sleeping
Non-toxic and safe
All foam design
Good motion isolation
Excellent support and cushioning
Removable and washable cotton cover
180 day home trial
Can be slow to expand and has a strong odor upon being unpacked
With its low price to suit even the smallest budget, this 5 inch thick, firm mattress from Linenspa is composed from a 4 inch thick foundation layer of dense base foam to give your body the correct level of support, plus a 1 inch thick layer of cool gel memory foam which eases weight on pressure points, plus ventilates and allows excess heat to escape.
A soft, breathable cotton cover which can be removed and washed is the finishing touch for added comfort.
Extremely low price
Good motion absorption
Sufficient support for neutral spine alignment
Gel foam layer helps regulate temperature
Certified by CertiPUR-US® as free from toxic substances
Can help with back pain
Not as thick and supportive as the more expensive options on our list
Arctic Dreams claim that sleeping on their 10 inch Cooling Gel Mattress with Quick Response Gel Infused Memory Foam is like sleeping on a cloud, and many satisfied customers will testify to that.
Three layers make up this medium firm mattress for side sleepers.
The 7.5 inch thick base layer is composed of dense, non toxic polyurethane foam to provide great support and its structure provides good airflow.
A 2.5 inch layer of cool, springy Energex gel memory foam ensures comfort for pressure points, and 0.75 inches of soft and breathable quilted cotton as the top layer is gentle on the skin and provides additional pressure relief.
Two of the three layers that make up the GhostBed Mattress by Nature’s Sleep feature cooling gel to promote airflow and regulate temperature to stop you getting too hot during sleep.
The 7.5 inch high density, durable foam base layer provides ample support for correct spinal alignment, and the 2 inch layer of gel memory foam also gives good pressure relief for maximum comfort, and the top 1.5 inch aerated latex layer gives just the right amount of bounce and resilience.
The soft, lightly cushioned viscose and polyester cover is comfortable to the touch and can be removed for washing. This mattress for side sleepers is rated as medium firm.
Represents good value considering the high quality
Doesn’t make noise when you shift position
Good motion isolation
Provides good airflow for sleeping cool
Certi-Pur certified and manufactured to produce zero emissions
This bed in a box by Sweetnight has been designed so it can be flipped over to give 2 different levels of firmness.
Inside the CertiPUR-US Certified mattress is made up of a 2 inch layer of gel memory foam for cooling relief on pressure points, 5 inches of 3 zoned comfort foam, and 3 inches of high density support foam to keep your body in the correct position during sleep and isolate motion.
Sleep on the bottom side for a medium firm feel, or flip over to the other side for a soft, comfortable feel. The natural, breathable cotton cover is pleasant to the touch and helps you to sleep cool.
All American Tuft & Needle use only Greenguard Gold, Certi-PUR, and Oeko-Tex 100 certified foams when making their mattresses, in order to ensure that they contain no harmful chemicals.
This 10 inch thick, medium firm mattress is made from a top 3 inch layer of pressure adaptive gel foam for good resilience and body contouring support, underneath which is a 7 inch layer of high density support foam with a synthetic rayon / polyester blend cover which wicks heat away from the body.
The adaptive foam used is designed to regulate temperature to sleep cool, and open cell technology ensures good breathability.
Very little motion transfer
Good pressure relief
No noise – sleeps silent
Sleeps at comfortable temperature
Good cost to quality ratio
100 night free trial
Provides a good level of support
Heavier sleepers may experience pressure point issues
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