The 9 Best Side Sleeper Mattresses – 2021 Reviews & Ratings

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Side sleeping is considered an excellent position for spine alignment. However, side sleepers can experience hip and shoulder pain due to continuous pressure, requiring more exhaustive pressure relief than back or stomach sleepers may need.

Below we break down our favorite mattresses for side sleepers. We analyze their best features to help you make an informed, stress-free decision. We list how firm they are, what the trial period is, and other essential must-knows before making this significant purchase.

Within each mattress guide, you’ll find our highlights, a summary of what the mattress offers, and a few unique perks about each product that we think are worth knowing to make the right choice. By the end of this article, you should have an excellent grasp of your ideal bed to have you waking up refreshed daily.

nectar bed small product image Nectar
  • Trial Period: 365 Nights
  • Type: Memory Foam
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small product image of dreamcloud premier DreamCloud Premier
  • Trial Period: 365 Nights
  • Type: Hybrid
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nolah original bed small product image Nolah
  • Trial Period: 120 Night
  • Type: All Foam
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layla bed new medium product image Layla
  • Trial Period: 120 Nights
  • Type: Memory Foam
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casper small product image The Casper
  • Trial Period: 100 Nights
  • Type: All Foam
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 small product image of bear mattress Bear
  • Trial Period: 100 Days
  • Type: Memory Foam
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casper wave medium image Casper Wave Hybrid
  • Trial Period: 100 Days
  • Type: Hybrid
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purple bed mobile product image Purple
  • Trial Period: 100 Days
  • Type: Polymer & Foam
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small product image of copper dreams Copper Dreams
  • Trial Period: 120 Days
  • Type: Memory Foam
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Top 9 Side Sleeper Mattress Reviews

Nectar – Exceptional Value

If you like the feeling of a deeper-cradling hug, this mattress has classic memory foam features you should enjoy.

HIGHLIGHTS:

  • Memory Foam Mattress
  • Firmness: 6.5/10
  • Great for Couples
  • 365-Night Trial
  • Forever Warranty

With Nectar’s deep contouring, it has support and pressure relief in spades. This bed is constructed with high-quality materials, like a breathable poly-blend cover and innovative cooling gel, so you can rest without the worry of traditional memory materials that retain excess heat. Further, Nectar’s motion transfer is minimal, so light sleepers shouldn’t be bothered throughout the night by restless partners or pets.

Nectar responds to pressure point issues side sleepers face exceptionally well while maintaining an extremely competitive price. Memory foam works great for side sleepers due to its contouring capabilities, allowing it to comfort the shoulders and hips, pressure points that side sleepers often struggle with.

Why did it make our list?

  • Nectar’s high-quality design coupled with its competitive price point drives a hard bargain.
  • Nectar offers a generous 365-night trial to give you an entire year to decide if it’s truly the bed of your dreams.

DreamCloud Premier – Soft Feel

Dreaming is easy on the DreamCloud Premier memory foam hybrid, designed to cradle all your pressure points while keeping you well supported.

HIGHLIGHTS:

  • Hybrid Mattress
  • Great for Warm Sleepers
  • Firmness: 5.5/10
  • 365-Night Trial
  • Lifetime Warranty

DreamCloud Premier has the pressure-relieving benefits of memory foam and the bounciness of springs to minimize the stuck feeling that often comes with memory foam beds. It is on the softer side, which is ideal for side sleepers who often struggle with pressure points around the hips and shoulders.

Additionally, the springs allow for more airflow by not trapping heat in the way traditional foam does. Along with the advanced gel-infused memory foam, this Premier model should keep you cool all night long. Plus, the lifetime warranty speaks volumes about manufacturer confidence, letting buyers purchase without stress.

This spring and foam hybrid bed comes neatly packaged in a box, letting you avoid coordinating with a delivery truck or transporting it yourself.

Why do we love it?

  • The plush EuroTop cover adds a layer of pressure relief for shoulders and hips, making this mattress even more desirable for side sleepers.
  • This bed is a great choice for warm sleepers as the springs maintain airflow throughout the night.

Nolah – Designed for Side Sleepers

The Nolah excels in providing necessary pressure relief, and its exclusive foam is designed to keep you cool.

HIGHLIGHTS:

  • Nolah AirFoam™ Mattress
  • Great for Lightweight Sleepers
  • Firmness: 5/10
  • 120-Night Trial
  • Lifetime Warranty

The Nolah Air Foam™ is specifically created to minimize pressure on the hips, the upper arm area, and the back. The company designed this bed as a direct response to outdated latex and memory materials.

The cushion has a remarkable response time for such a soft bed, minimizing the classic “stuck” feeling of some memory foam mattresses. Further, it boasts notable motion isolation, making it a great choice for couples.

What makes it unique? Nolah claims their product provides four times less peak pressure than similar models and is more durable than latex. Their proprietary material is temperature neutral to help you stay cool at night.

What stands out?

  • Though not technically memory foam, the Nolah AirFoam provides exceptional pressure relief for hips and shoulders, and its motion isolation is top of the line, making it great for duos.
  • Being a temperature neutral mattress, the Nolah AirForm provides excellent cooling when compared to a traditional memory foam mattress.

Layla – Pressure Relief

Layla is double-sided, with Soft and Firm sides, allowing you to discover and adjust the type of support and pressure relief that suits your body best.

HIGHLIGHTS:

  • Memory Foam Mattress
  • Great for Couples
  • Firmness: 5.5 and 7.5 (Dual-sided)
  • 120-Night Trial
  • Lifetime Warranty

Layla’s design includes copper-infused memory foam that is exceptional for relieving pressure and conducting heat away from sleepers. The bed is double-sided with dual firmness levels. We think the soft side will offer great pressure relief to side sleepers, and excellent support for stomach snoozers.

Besides its antimicrobial properties, copper is meant to provide a host of health benefits. The way copper compresses and reacts to the cells around it results in excellent pressure relief.

Further, if you tend to sleep warm, the copper-infused construction helps to conduct heat away from your body and along with the Thermo-gel cover, this bed works double-time to ensure you have a cool night’s sleep.

What are its best features?

  • Besides its pressure-relieving abilities, Layla offers impressive motion isolation with its slow conforming memory foam, making it an excellent choice for couples who toss and turn or wake easily.
  • The innovative copper-infused design promotes coolness in an otherwise stuffy material.

Casper – All Sleeping Positions

The specially-designed Casper foams are accommodating for all sleeping positions, making this bed a good choice for side sleepers and couples with different preferences.

HIGHLIGHTS:

  • Foam Mattress
  • Great for Combo Sleepers
  • Firmness: 6/10
  • 100-Night Trial
  • 10-Year Warranty

Casper’s new Zoned Support™ system is specially designed to provide relief in the spots you need it most, like the hips, back, and shoulders. This should allow a wide variety of body types to find comfort and support.

The mattress achieves this by using various foam densities in different places to create optimal support and pressure relief.  The bed is softer near the top for shoulder relief, and firmer near the hips for spinal alignment, offering excellent support.

Casper’s innovative foam design provides fantastic motion isolation, so if you share a bed with a partner, this can allow you to sleep easily without being woken up every time they roll over.

Why did it top our list?

  • Casper is considerably thick, which also offers strong support for larger bodies and could maximize longevity.
  • This bed is not only comfortable for side-sleepers but typically all other positions as well, which makes it easy for partners with different sleeping positions or combo sleepers.

Bear Mattress – Athletes & Active Folks

Bear’s graphite gel and cover with Celliant® technology are specially designed to keep you cool through warm nights.

HIGHLIGHTS:

  • Memory Foam Mattress
  • Great for Side Sleepers
  • Firmness: 7/10
  • 100-Night Trial
  • 10-Year Warranty

The Bear is created to provide excellent pressure relief with additional benefits designed to cater to athletic folks. According to Bear, the Celliant® fibers use Infrared Yarn Technology to change a body’s natural energy into infrared light, created to yield quicker muscle recovery, better temperature regulation, and more restful sleep.

The mattress makes repositioning easy with its high response to touch, which is especially helpful if you’re a combination sleeper and prefer to switch around and readjust in the middle of the night. This bed offers multiple cooling features to keep you from overheating, like a double infusion of gel and graphite in the memory layer, and a cover made with Celliant®, which especially caters to athletes.

What makes it special?

  • The unique Celliant technology, with a potential array of benefits, makes it a star contender for athletes looking to improve recovery time.
  • Finding a product that caters specifically to athletes’ sleep needs is rare, and this brand makes rest for heavy-hitting bodies a top priority.

Casper Wave Hybrid – Spine Alignment

Casper’s innovations in foam layering combined with a new innerspring design help keep this hybrid mattress cool and comfortable for sleepers while providing advanced zoned spinal alignment.

HIGHLIGHTS:

  • Hybrid Memory Foam Mattress
  • Great for Side Sleepers
  • Firmness: 6/10
  • 100-Day Trial
  • 10-Year Warranty

The Casper Wave Hybrid’s unique design consists of multiple layers, one containing strategically placed gel pods atop individually pocketed coils. This allows the foam to better contour for proper support in the hips and shoulders, keeping the hips from sinking too deeply. The mattress’s construction is built to protect your spine from falling into an unnatural position, fostering better alignment.

Why do we love it?

  • The Casper Wave Hybrid could be a smart purchase for those struggling with back pain— with pocketed coils for targeted pressure relief combined with strong support zones, this bed excels in alignment.
  • This is a luxury bed billed much lower than other luxury models with no sacrifices made for materials.

Purple – Innovative Design

Scientifically engineered to provide pressure relief to any area of the body that needs it, the Purple has deemed itself the “World’s First No Pressure™ mattress”.

HIGHLIGHTS:

  • Hyper Elastic Polymer and Foam Mattress
  • Great for Side Sleepers
  • Firmness: 6/10
  • 100-Night Trial
  • 10-Year Warranty

Purple takes a remarkably scientific approach to comfort and pressure relief, which is good news for side sleepers.

The company is well-known for dropping raw eggs and a large plane of glass, onto the bed, and, incredibly, the eggs don’t crack. The test demonstrates Purple’s unique pressure-relieving abilities, showing how the mattress cradles the fragile eggs, yet is supportive enough to evenly distribute the weight of the glass, preventing it from bearing down on the eggs. The bed should support your body weight similarly, providing both quality support and great pressure relief.

Further, its polymer materials create a quick response for excellent motion isolation and a temperature neutral environment for warm sleepers.

Why do we love it?

  • Purple stands alone its design which strays far from the traditional layers of memory foam, latex, and springs but still offers optimal pressure relief and support.
  • The Hyper-Elastic Polymer layer is temperature neutral and could offer cool relief for those who struggle through warm nights.

Copper Dreams – Budget Choice

The Copper Dreams provides an affordable alternative to high-end brands while maintaining many desirable benefits.

HIGHLIGHTS:

  • Memory Foam Mattress
  • Great for Lightweight Sleepers
  • Firmness: 5/10
  • 120-Day Trial
  • 10-Year Warranty

If you like the “hug” often experienced through typical memory foam, along with pressure point relief and high levels of motion isolation without a high price tag, the Copper Dreams is a great pick.

This Copper Dreams model is a superior budget option. The company behind the brand owns their factory, meaning they have fewer costs, letting them sell to consumers at a lower price.

While the Copper Dreams is less expensive, quality has not been sacrificed. Two layers of memory material reside above the base, and the top layer is infused with copper-graphite for cooling benefits. The upper foam layers provide soft contouring, perfect for side sleepers’ pressure relief needs.

What are our favorite features?

  • While the Copper Dreams offers excellent comfort and support, the price makes for a fantastic selling point, a truly superior budget option with quality materials.
  • The Copper Dreams is rated slightly softer than the majority of our other options, making it ideal for lighter weight side sleepers who have trouble with pressure points on the shoulders and hips.

Challenges as a Side Sleeper

Pressure Points Cause Pain

When it comes to side sleeping, there is one significant drawback to account for – pressure. The truth is that as much as people enjoy sleeping on their sides, the position causes significant weight concentration over a small area and can create pressure points in the hips and shoulders and even cause lower back pain. Some mattress companies claim to provide the right balance between support and pressure relief to avoid these issues.

One of the most targets for pressure relief is the lower back. The more constant the pressure is, the more severe the pain can become. The risk of continually repeating this cycle is developing chronic pain.

By choosing a bed made specifically for side sleepers, you should be able to relieve the pressure and help prevent any further conditions. If you're between a few different mattress considerations, we feel this factor should take priority.

Hip/Shoulder Pain

Hip pain is especially common and bothersome in pregnant women who side sleep for the safety of their growing babies. The constant pressure on their growing bodies tends to concentrate pain in the hips.

Though it may not manifest immediately, pain often begins to radiate from the hips down the leg and into the knees as well as up into the lower back. It's not uncommon for the pain to fade throughout the day as the joints loosen up, though the pain usually returns the next morning.

If you've ever felt yourself following this pattern of pain and discomfort, it's a safe bet your mattress is either too firm for your frame, or not supportive enough to keep your spine aligned as you sleep on your side.

Many lightweight side sleepers also experience constant pressure on the shoulders, which can result in stiffness and pain in the morning. The proper mattress for a lighter side sleeper will be soft enough to cradle that pressure point and allow the joint to move throughout the night, rather than locking up.

View Our Complete Guide: Best Mattresses for Hip and Shoulder Pain

Illustration of a Lady Suffering from Hip Pain

Neck Pain

When side sleeping with improper spinal alignment, the pressure can build on your neck causing unpleasant stiffness and achiness in the morning. If it goes on for long enough it could make it difficult for you to move your head and seriously affect your activities of daily life.

Especially if you're broad-shouldered, the combination of a pressure-relieving mattress and a lofty pillow could go a long way in correcting spinal alignment and reducing neck pain.

If the mattress is too firm, it could also have an effect on blood flow, cutting off circulation which is vital for the restorative effects of sleep. This could also cause you to wake with numbness and tingling in your arms or other extremities.

If you have severe spinal misalignment as a result of your firm mattress, it may be necessary to see a chiropractor or other doctor to address the situation before a new mattress can help.

Read More: Mattresses for Neck Pain

animated man trying to ease neck pain by massaging painful spot

Back Pain

Back pain could also be the result of an inappropriate mattress combined with the awkwardness of the side sleeping position. If the mattress is too soft, or too plush, this can cause your lower back to sink in deeper, as that’s where more weight is being concentrated. On the other hand, if it’s too firm, this could cause serious discomfort, especially if you are lighter regarding weight.

With all this in mind, the thing that you need to consider is the density of the foam as well as the softness of the mattress. Ideally, you’d be looking for a solution that hugs you without inducing the feeling as if you are trapped.

At the same time, you are looking for a combination of softness and support to contour your body line while relieving you of pressure.

Back pain could quickly escalate and cause a myriad of associated issues. It is most commonly caused by inappropriate postures as well as a lack of support while you sleep. If your mattress is softer than it should be, this can disrupt your alignment and cause a sensation of stiffness that will quickly translate to aching and severe pain. Make sure to take this into account when you pick up a top-rated mattress for side sleepers.

For More Info: Best Mattress for Back Pain

illustration of a person having lower back pain

How the Mattress Type Affects Side Sleepers

Memory Foam

The most popular choice when it comes to this category, a great memory foam mattress (for side sleepers) is something that you might want to consider. The truth is that there is a lot of merit in purchasing a solution of this kind for a range of different reasons.

Right off the bat, when you look at the mattress types for side sleepers, the most important thing that you want to consider is whether or not it conforms to the contours of your body. This is undoubtedly something quite important, and you should take it into account. If it doesn’t, the firmness of the mattress, regardless of whether it’s harder or softer, can play a detrimental role, and that’s not a risk you should be willing to take.

With this in mind, a proper mattress could easily be a great solution, but you may have to do a little testing and make sure that the foam aligns to your body in a relieving way that doesn’t alter the neutral alignment. The softness should be adequate, but the support should not be compromised. Additionally, make sure that the foam is of high quality and that you do not get that trapped sensation typically indicative of lower-quality solutions.

Innerspring

Innerspring constructions bring a significant amount of value to your mattress because of the convenience that they provide. First of all, the overall breathability and airflow of these mattresses are incomparable to anything else on the market. Additionally, they are known for being quite supportive and reliable in this particular regard.

Of course, they do have their drawbacks. For instance, if the coils are not individually wrapped, you may not get the same level of individualized tailoring or pressure relief.

So, is this a good side sleeper option? Overall, some traditional coil mattresses may not be the best choice. The reason for this is simple – they bring in significant support, but there is a definitive lack of conformity in some models.

This could put more pressure on specific points, and that’s not something that you ought to consider. If the top layer is covered with a comforter of this foam-type, or if the coils are pocketed, the picture can change completely. However, the foam layer falls into an even more specific category (below) that you can consider.

Read More: Best Innerspring Mattress

memory foam latex innerspring and hybrid mattress

Hybrid

Even the top-rated traditional innerspring mattress designed for a side sleeper may not provide you with the same level of convenience as a hybrid solution.

A hybrid mattress is one that combines the comfortable support brought by the steel coil system with an additional or more than one layer of foam. The type of foam could be different, but it’s usually high-quality memory foam that you should be looking forward to.

In most cases, there are quite a lot of benefits that stem from using a solution of this kind. While you can receive the necessary conformity that is lacking in traditional innerspring mattresses, the support that is brought by the coil system is something that foam mattress sometimes miss. This is a solid option because it brings a beautiful combination of comprehensive solutions intended to deliver the best sleeping sensation for a side sleeper with mixed materials.

Latex

Lying on your side tends to produce the most pressure points because this narrow surface area is bearing your full body weight. To relieve pressure, foam tends to reign supreme, but some foams, especially traditional memory foam, might make you feel trapped or hot. Latex is in a number of new products because of its ability to address pressure points without holding your body in place or overheating.

Latex is typically buoyant and allows lots of air to flow through it – qualities that help it remain temperature neutral and easy to navigate. Since the material is quick responding, it should immediately spring right back into its original shape. If you are a combination sleeper or an otherwise active sleeper, these constructions make repositioning easier.

Not all latex is created equal and, depending on how it is processed, it can produce a remarkably different feel to suit different preferences/budgets. You can choose naturally-sourced latex produced from rubber tree sap or synthetic blends or alternatives that tend to be more affordable. The Talalay process produces foam considered more luxury level because of consistency and lightness, while the heavier Dunlop latex is processed more naturally and may contain fewer chemicals.

Read Our Full Guide: Best Latex Beds

Other Buying Considerations

Firm or Soft

Although there are some general trends, you need to consider your personal preferences as well as any issues that you might be facing. With this being said, it is quite essential to land the most appropriate balance between softness and firmness. A mattress that’s too soft could turn out to be applying more pressure on your lower back and shoulders while firmer options bring tension to the area around your neck and hips.

The solution is a balanced mattress aligned with your specifications. Remember to consider your weight. This is one of the most characteristic properties that you should account for.

Heavier folks will usually prefer a firmer mattress because it will resist sinking too deep. Hence, solutions with thicker top layers may be preferable. On the other hand, if you are lightweight, you might consider a soft bed to avoid creating pressure points.

Of course, it’s also important to consider the type of pain you might be feeling. All in all, when it comes to optimal bed firmness for side sleepers, you should aim for one that brings optimal spinal alignment when it comes to it.

Recommended Mattress Firmness for Side Sleepers

A graph showing recommended firmness range for people who sleep on their side (we recommend a medium to soft feel, depending on your personal preference)

Bed in a Box vs. Retail

Though traditional mattress stores and furniture stores selling beds still do good business, bed-in-a-box online brands are thriving and new and more innovative choices are cropping up every day, enticing potential customers away from brick and mortar shops.

It may be more comfortable for you to shop in-store because you’d prefer to speak face-to-face with a person about which brand works best for you. However, many people are intimidated by salespeople, many of whom work on commission and are motivated to sell higher-priced items when upgrades may not be necessary. Almost all boxed brands have online chat functions that allow you to talk with reps about the product, many of whom do not work for commission.

Additionally, exclusive side sleepers typically have highly specific pressure relief needs, and they may feel it’s better to make sure that a product properly aligns their spine and soothes their pressure points before purchasing. To address this, online companies offer generous trials that let you try the mattress at home, and you may have a better idea after a few nights than from 15 minutes in a store.

Get More Info: Top Picks for Boxed Mattresses

illustration of a man unboxing bed in a box

Expensive or Budget

The quality of your sleep might not correspond to a price tag, as there are many considerations outside of craftsmanship and materials that might drive up the price of a mattress. Housing and displaying brands in a retail store, for example, may increase the price because the supply chain is longer, and there are many more middlemen who must be paid.

A direct-to-consumer online sales model can save you thousands on the same quality of pressure relief side sleepers need. These brands can offer significant savings because the supply chain is much shorter, and oftentimes, a bed is coming directly from a factory right to your door. Beds that compress and roll into boxes also save the companies on storage and shipping.

It’s more important to evaluate a bed in terms of its value and its suitability to your specific sleep needs rather than only thinking about the bed’s extra bells and whistles. Evaluate your sleep priorities, and shop for a product that delivers in these categories. You might find you spend a lot less money than you originally budgeted to invest.

Find Out More: Best Beds on a Budget

Benefits of Sleeping Sideways

If you feel naturally tempted towards sleeping on your left side, there is a valid, scientific reason for that. A lot of reports show that there are actual benefits of sleeping on your left in spite of on your right side. Some of them include:

  • Reduced heartburn

  • It prevents snoring

  • It boosts your digestion properties

  • Helps to clear your lymph

  • Improves your overall brain health

The reasons for that are numerous. In a nutshell, it comes down to better alignment of your entire body, including your internal organs and not just your spine.

In fact, learning to adjust to resting in this position may seriously cut down on sleep apnea episodes for a significant amount of people.

Of course, as we’ve mentioned above, there are also challenges associated with sleeping on your side. When you’re considering the benefits, make sure not to forget to weigh in the side effects and potential risks as well.

Illustration of a Woman Sleeping on Her Side on a Soft Mattress

Frequently Asked Questions

What if I am a combo sleeper?

Because our favorite picks for side sleepers often include optimal pressure relief and zoned support, many should be a good fit for those who spend some time sleeping on their backs as well. However, if you are also a stomach sleeper, consider how much time you spend on average in each position. If the majority of the time is spent on your side, these beds should be a good fit for most.

See Our In-depth Guide: Mattresses for Combination Sleepers

Conclusion

As you can see for yourself, there genuinely are quite a few things that you would have to consider when it comes to picking up the most excellent mattress for side sleepers. The awkwardness of the sleeping position requires you to react adequately and to make a particular choice to prevent any further complications.

We genuinely hope that the information we’ve laid out above would provide you with the necessary assistance when you decide to go up against this challenge. We hope that you can make the right purchase without having to go through an abundance of different mattresses and waste a few days on it.

The units we’ve described are amongst the most popular and practical solutions for your specific sleeping habits. Great public feedback has validated them, and they stand the test of the common user.

Rachael is a content writer for Sleep Advisor who loves combining her enthusiasm for writing and wellness. She’s had a passion for writing since she was a kid when she wrote awful poetry. She’s honed her craft quite a bit since then and considers herself a lucky duck to get paid to do what she loves.

Embracing the remote work life, she occasionally takes her work on the road and lives out her travel writer pipe dream.

In her free time, she attempts to meditate regularly, rides her bike to Trader Joe’s, and enjoys trying every type of food that she can get her hands on.

Maria’s mission is to empower her patients to live their best life by providing effective patient care. Physical Therapy is more than mere exercises; she says, “it’s able to connect with your patient on a deeper level that makes all the difference.” Maria is a firm believer that patients naturally rehabilitate in a more comprehensive way when they receive an excellent overall experience.

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