The Sleep Doctor’s Take on the Best Mattress for Side Sleepers

Looking for the best mattress for side sleepers? You’ve come to the right place. It can be common for adults to sleep on their side, especially as we get older. Sleeping on your side has its fair share of health benefits––It can help with digestion and reduce acid reflux as well as snoring, which means partners of snorers can get a little more peace and quiet through the night as well. 

And as The Sleep Doctor, Michael Breus, Ph.D says, 

“I think at last count about 75% of people sleep on their sides. The side sleeping position allows for the disks between your spinal bones (called vertebrae) to re-hydrate or “fatten up again” due to the position allowing the body to curve allowing the bones to slightly separate from each other. It is through this positional separation that your spinal disks rehydrate easier which helps reduce morning stiffness and pain.” 

If you’re in the side-sleeping majority, you’re in luck; a great deal of mattresses on the market today have been designed to provide the kind of support and comfort a side sleeper needs to achieve a good night’s rest. Side sleepers need a mattress that contours to their pressure points, like their shoulders and hips, so it’s important that a mattress provides adequate support in both areas as well as good pressure relief. In addition, motion transfer is also important since side sleepers tend to shift positions throughout the night.  And with so many good options for a side sleeper to choose from, now it’s just a matter of finding out if the mattress you’re thinking about buying––or, even, already sleeping on––is the right one for you.

However, with the plethora of mattresses available today, your search for a new bed may feel rather daunting. That’s why The Sleep Doctor has partnered with the expert review team at Mattress Advisor to put together a list of the 12 best mattresses for side sleepers. With their combined knowledge, we’ve summarized a handful of our favorites by creating an easy-to-follow guide that covers side sleeper’s specific needs and buying considerations. We’ll start with a roundup of 12 top-reviewed mattresses for side sleepers.

Each product we feature has been independently selected and reviewed by our editorial team. If you make a purchase using the links included, we may earn commission.

Best Overall:

Honorable Mentions:

The team at Mattress Advisor performed hours of mattress testing at their lab in Raleigh, North Carolina to see which mattress performed best across many different categories, including firmness, pressure relief, and spinal alignment. All mattresses tested by Mattress Advisor are rated on a scale of 1-10, with 10 being the perfect score, based on 14 different pieces of criteria related to the mattress materials, performance, and brand overall.

Ready to narrow down this list even further? Here are some of the most important factors you should think about when shopping for the mattress of your side-sleeping dreams.

What to Consider When Shopping for the Best Mattress for Side Sleepers

As mentioned earlier, sleeping on your side can create pressure points around your shoulders and hips. These are the widest parts of your body, and your weight tends to concentrate in those two areas the most when you’re on your side. If you’re sleeping on the wrong mattress, you may find yourself waking up with discomfort in your lower back, pain in your hips and shoulders, and stiffness in your neck. Let any of these issues persist for too long, and you can develop chronic pain

What Side Sleepers Need

The ideal mattress that meets the needs of most side sleepers is one that promotes pressure relief and provides adequate support across your entire body as side sleeping can put more pressure on key areas of your body. This includes keeping weight off of your shoulders and hips by cushioning pressure points. You’ll not only toss and turn less, but you’ll be less likely to wake up with morning aches and pains. 

Spine alignment is crucial as well, as The Sleep Doctor notes its importance no matter the position you sleep in. But luckily, when you sleep on your side, you’re actually benefiting your back, too. In his article on sleep position, Dr. Breus notes that side sleeping gives less of a chance of experiencing back pain, because your spine doesn’t have acute pressure on it. 

Also motion transfer is important, because even with the perfect mattress, your body should change positions multiple times throughout the night. Low motion transfer helps your partner stay asleep as well. 

Mattress Type

Not all side sleepers are created equal; they come in all shapes and sizes––just like mattresses. While you can read up on what mattress may be best for side sleepers in general, what works for you may not work for another fellow side sleeper. Mattresses on the market today are also made with all kinds of material, and each of them come with their own list of pros and cons. So, when considering the same factors used by The Sleep Doctor when making his list, make sure you also take into account the factors that are unique to you. For example, a side sleeper carrying a bit more weight may need a slightly firmer mattress to avoid sinking and misaligning their spine. As you narrow down your list of mattress candidates, this list will help point you in the right direction but be sure to keep your specific needs top of mind.

Memory Foam Mattresses

A memory foam mattress is a solid go-to choice for side sleepers. Foam naturally contours to your body, providing cushion for your shoulders and hips, and reducing the likelihood of concentrated pressure points. The quality of foam used in a mattress plays a big role as well; higher grade foam aligns to your body and promotes neutral spine alignment. It’s soft while also ensuring support in the right areas.

Hybrid Mattresses

A hybrid mattress usually runs a bit higher up the price scale than a mattress constructed entirely from memory foam. But since all-foam mattresses tend to trap heat, a hybrid mattress will most definitely run a heck of a lot cooler in most cases. The best hybrid mattresses incorporate both foam and coils into their design, giving you the support and longevity of an innerspring mattress with the comfort of foam.

Innerspring Mattresses

Innerspring mattresses are built with metal coils that give great support that other mattress types may lack. However, an innerspring mattress can provide too much of a good thing; while the metal coils found inside give you great support, they can also make the mattress too rigid and firm, meaning it may not conform to your body like it should. This means in general, innerspring beds may not provide the level of pressure relief side sleepers require, though there are some exceptions, like the plush version of the Saatva Classic. If innerspring is your “thing” try to find a bed with individually pocketed coils, and you should feel both well supported and comfortable. 

Latex Mattresses

A mattress made from latex can cushion your body while keeping your neck and spine in alignment. As a material, latex has an innate ability to reduce pressure points while allowing you the freedom to move with minimal motion transfer. Latex is also inherently cool. And if you’re an active sleeper, you’ll appreciate the ability of a latex mattress to quickly respond to your body as you move from side to side.

Mattress Firmness

You might have noticed during your preliminary window shopping that each mattress has a firmness rating on a scale of 1 to 10. The higher the rating, the firmer the mattress. So, how firm should a mattress be for side sleepers? It’s a bit of fine balancing act. Get a mattress that’s too soft, and your body will sink out of alignment, resulting in pressure points in your hips and shoulders. If a mattress is too hard, it won’t be able to smoothly contour to your hips and shoulders, and you’ll place more strain around your neck. That’s why medium firmness is usually the ideal level not just for side sleepers, but for anyone looking to relieve pain or pressure. It’s still soft enough to cradle pressure points, but firm enough to provide proper support and durability.

Your body weight should also factor into just how firm your mattress should be; the heavier you are, the firmer your ideal mattress

Learn more about the best firm mattresses for your sleep needs.

The Top Picks for the Best Mattress for Side Sleepers

Before you feel overwhelmed by the information you just read, know that The Sleep Doctor essentially just gave you a crash course in the best mattress for side sleeping. You’re now equipped with the knowledge needed to make an informed mattress-buying decision. And that means you’re ready to dive in and review The Sleep Doctor’s list of the best mattresses for side sleepers. Regardless of differences in body type or budget, you’ll be sure to find a mattress that works for your sleep needs and your wallet.

1. Best Memory Foam Mattress: Puffy Lux

This is one of the best memory foam mattresses hands-down for side sleepers to hit the market––and it makes a strong case for being the greatest, period. The Puffy Lux provides unmatched pressure relief. When tested by the Mattress Advisor experts, they found zero evidence of pressure on the hips and shoulders, which is reflected in Puffy’s near-perfect pressure relief score.

A key element of the Puffy Lux’s design is its body adapting foam and core support layer. The mattress overall strikes a nice balance between soft and supportive with its medium firmness, so side sleepers get more than sufficient body cradling and contouring. 

If you’re a side sleeper in need of some pain relief, this mattress is worth a look. With its innovative design of dense foams and premium materials, you can almost feel the stress, strain, and heat dissolving from your body. And if you worry that the Puffy Lux sounds too good to be true, just take a look at its perfect customer rating––a resounding 5 out of 5.

  • Mattress Type: Memory Foam
  • Customer Rating: 5 out of 5
  • Firmness: Medium- Firm
  • Warranty: Lifetime

Buy It, Puffy Lux, $1,795 for a Queen,

2. Best Mattress for Back Pain: Casper

If you’re a side sleeper suffering from back pain, the Casper Original is an excellent choice. In fact, it earned the title “best total score” in our guide to the best mattresses for back pain

The team at Mattress Advisor gave the Casper a 9.1 out of 10, thanks to its premium foam design that offers pressure point relief and a responsive surface that cradles the curves of your hips and shoulders. This medium-firm mattress also earned a 9 out of 10 in spine alignment, which is an important point for back pain sufferers. Spine alignment assists in relieving back pain by keeping your spine in a neutral position and promoting a healthy posture. 

Because the Casper Original is a memory foam mattress, some customers report it sleepers hot, so consider adding some cooling accessories to keep your mind calm and your nights restful. Despite that potential con, though, the Casper truly does deliver when it comes to back pain for side sleepers. Plus, people who favor other sleep positions such as back, stomach, and combination sleepers also report really enjoying this mattress.

  • Mattress Type: Memory Foam
  • Customer Rating: 4.5 out of 5
  • Firmness: Medium-firm
  • Warranty: 10-Year Limited

Buy It, Casper Original Mattress, $1,095 for a Queen,

3. Best Value Mattress: Nectar

If you’re on the hunt for pressure relieving properties without the hefty price tag, look no further than the Nectar mattress. Besides being one of the best bangs for your buck, it scored an 8.5 in pressure relief, make it a great choice for side sleepers. And while it only scored a 7.5 in spine alignment, it comes in at less than $1,000 for a Queen, making it a great value option if you’re looking for above-average scores at a reasonable price point.   

With its five adaptive memory foam layers, it relieves the common pressure points beneath your shoulders, hips, and legs. Plus, one of its foam layers is injected with gel, which some sleepers report keeps the mattress feeling cool. The Nectar also features a hi-core foam layer, which is designed to help isolate motion, so people who sleep with a restless partner won’t be disturbed by their movements. Finally, Nectar also backs this budget-friendly mattress with an amazing 365-day trial period and a lifetime warranty. 

  • Mattress Type: Memory Foam
  • Customer Rating: 4.8 out of 5
  • Firmness: Medium-Firm
  • Warranty: Lifetime Warranty

Buy It, Nectar Mattress, $949 for a Queen,

4. Best Innerspring Mattress: Saatva Classic

While innerspring mattresses don’t usually provide the pressure relief side sleepers need, many customers give the plush soft version of the Saatva Classic positive reviews. While Saatva offers different levels of firmness, the plush soft allows you to sink into Saatva’s soft euro pillow top, and the memory foam layer cradles your pressure points. 

Despite only earning a 6.5 in pressure relief, the Saatva Classic still earns a top place on this list thanks to strong customer reviews and what Saatva calls Lumbar Zone technology. This prevents your hips from sinking, which in turn helps you maintain great neutral spinal alignment. Also, thanks to its impressive dual-coil systems, the Saatva is able to support a lot of body weight, making it suitable for heavier sleepers.

Complementing the lumbar support of the Saatva Classic is its incredible edge support. Edge support helps you stay in the middle of the mattress, helping side sleepers stretch out sans fear of being lured to the edge. According to our Saatva mattress review, the outstanding lumbar and edge support together make the Saatva Classic one of the best mattresses on the market for side sleepers, bar none.  

Regardless of whichever firmness level you choose, don’t feel stuck if you find yourself with a mattress that’s too soft or hard; the Saatva Classic comes with a 180-day trial period that gives you plenty of time to try out the mattress.

  • Mattress Type: Luxury Hybrid
  • Customer Rating: 4.8 out of 5
  • Firmness: Plush, Luxury Firm, and Firm
  • Warranty: 15-Year Limited

Buy It, Saatva Classic Mattress, $1,399 for a Queen,

5. Best for Back and Side Sleepers: Helix Midnight Luxe

The Helix Midnight Luxe features a pocket coil core layer, which gives side sleepers zoned lumbar support, consistent spinal alignment, and even weight distribution. There’s also a gel-infused memory foam layer, which offers plenty of reinforced support and contouring in your shoulders and hips. Basically, side sleepers will never have to worry about their lower back sinking too far into the mattress or waking up from the aches you’d typically experience from a night with a misaligned spine. 

It’s these benefits that make this medium-firm mattress a good choice for side sleepers who sometimes favor their back as well. The Helix Midnight Luxe is soft enough to provide pressure relief, but firm enough to prevent sagging and offer support, helping sleepers feel supported even if they change positions at night.

  • Mattress Type: Hybrid
  • Customer Rating: 4.5 out of 5
  • Firmness: Medium
  • Warranty: 15-Year Limited Warranty

Buy It, Helix Midnight Luxe, $1,599 for a Queen,

6. Best Extra Firm Mattress: Cocoon by Sealy

Selecting a firm mattress for side sleepers in general can be a bit of a tough ask; a softer mattress is more often than not the best option for side sleepers. However, the extra firm Cocoon mattress by Sealy is a good compromise if you simply must have something a little firmer. There are three premium foam layers in the mattress, each one engineered from heavy, robust foam for increased durability and resiliency. Despite being pretty high on the firmness scale, the Cocoon still does a great job of adapting to your body size and shape while staying responsive.

The Sleep Doctor awarded the Cocoon the top spot for best firm mattress for side sleepers because of its ability to keep the body evenly supported and the spine aligned. For such a firm mattress, it has a surprising amount of pressure point relief. It also offers great edge support you wouldn’t expect to find in a foam mattress.

And if it’s the Cocoon’s design and not its firmness that catches your eye, Sealy also offers the mattress in medium soft, another superb choice for side sleepers. 

  • Mattress Type: Memory Foam
  • Customer Rating: 4.6 out of 5
  • Firmness: Medium Soft and Extra Firm
  • Warranty: 10-Year Limited Warranty

Buy It, Cocoon by Sealy, $599 for a Queen,

7. Best Flippable Mattress: Layla Hybrid

If you suffer from indecisiveness, you’ll find the Layla Hybrid mattress quite a relief. The Layla Hybrid is one of the few flippable mattresses on the market with a medium firm side and a firm side. Along the top of each side of the mattress is a layer of memory foam that gives you a nice plush feel and cushions your pressure points. The memory foam topper is thicker on the softer side but thinner on the firmer side, so you can take your pick. The Sleep Doctor would recommend the medium firm side for average side sleepers, but the firm side for heavier side sleepers in need of more support.

This versatile mattress also features a zone support layer that hugs the body and relieves excess body pressure in your hips and shoulders. And with a high-density foam that surrounds its innerspring core, the Layla Hybrid provides extra support in your middle, which tends to be where most of our weight concentrates when we lie down on our sides. You get contouring comfort without too much sinkage, and your spine stays in neutral alignment. This helps side sleepers with hip pain wake up feeling a lot less achy. Additionally, Layla’s innerspring coils, memory foam, and zoned support offer great support for sleepers who carry some extra weight.

  • Mattress Type: Hybrid
  • Customer Rating: 5 out of 5
  • Firmness: Soft and Firm
  • Warranty: 10-Year Limited Warranty

Buy It, Layla Hybrid, $1649 for a Queen,

8. Best for Plus-Sized People: Bear Hybrid

The Bear Hybrid mattress tips the firmness scale just a bit too high for most side sleepers to get the soft cushioning they need. But there is, however, a caveat; if you’re a plus-sized sleeper, the Bear Hybrid does a great job of supporting your hips and shoulders without too much sinkage. Heavyweight side sleepers typically need a firmer mattress, so the mattress doesn’t sag and cause spine curvatures or increased pressure. A hybrid foam mattress with encased coil springs, the Bear Hybrid also incorporates a proprietary foam designed to relieve pressure by contouring to your body. 

The Sleep Doctor singled out the Bear Hybrid’s ability to keep the spine straight throughout the night. It preserves spinal alignment and promotes a healthy posture. And since heavy people do tend to run hotter while they sleep, the Bear Hybrid is also a clear standout for its cooling gel foam and quilted cover infused with Celliant fiber technology, both of which work together to move body heat away from you as you sleep. 

  • Mattress Type: Hybrid Foam + Coils
  • Customer Rating: 4.7 out of 5
  • Firmness: Medium-Firm
  • Warranty: 20-Year Limited Warranty

Buy It, Bear Hybrid, $1390 for a Queen,

9. Best for Pressure Relief: Brooklyn Signature

If you’re looking for a mattress that will help relieve pressure on areas that take the brunt of the weight in the side sleeping position, look no further than Brooklyn Signature. This hybrid mattress scored an impressive 9 out of 10 on the Mattress Advisor pressure relief test and features three different firmness levels: soft, medium and firm. If you’re a side sleeper with shoulder pain, The Sleep Doctor found the soft and medium firmness options to be both great choices.

This mattress was designed from the ground up for incredible support. That’s because the mattress contains many layers of support, all working in tandem to provide relief from aches that are usually caused from the pressure points around your hips and shoulders. Because of this, the Brooklyn Signature came impressively close to landing a perfect score for pressure relief.

The Brooklyn Signature provides incredible lumbar support with its pocketed coils. And its foam layers contour to your body, working in with the coils to promote a healthy posture. A quilted layer on top of the mattress resists permanent body impressions, and a 2” layer of specialty blended foam underneath that holds the contouring properties of memory foam and the responsiveness of latex. Yet another 2” layer of  foam offers deeper compression and support, which itself sits on a base of nearly 1,000 individually encased coils.

This level of support across so many layers is tough to beat, but the Brooklyn Signature also excels in cooling, edge support, and responsiveness. For side sleepers looking for a customized feel, the Brooklyn Signature is a stellar choice.

  • Mattress Type: Hybrid
  • Customer Rating: 4.7 out of 5
  • Firmness: Plus, Medium, Firm
  • Warranty: 10-Year Limited Warranty

Buy It, Brooklyn Signature, $999 for a Queen,

10. Best Latex Mattress: Zenhaven

The pressure-relieving properties of the Zenhaven mattress alone make it worth every penny. Every other great feature about this mattress is just a bonus. For starters, the Zenhaven is wrapped in an organic cotton cover to promote breathability and comfort. Additionally, the mattress is a dual-sided bed composed of three all-natural latex layers. Side sleepers will want to use the luxury plush side for deeper contouring and pressure relief. The other side––being a gentle-firm option––is more ideal for back sleepers.

The luxury plus side shares a 5-zone design with the gentle-firm side, but it has a softer feel and offers excellent support and body conforming for pressure points in your hips and shoulders. In the center of the mattress is a latex support core, which consists of 6 inches of 100% Talalay latex, offering side sleepers much-needed durable support.

And unless you’re a tried and true budget shopper, don’t let the sticker price scare you away from giving this mattress a shot. The Zenhaven is a high-quality mattress that will undoubtedly last you for years after its 120-night sleep trial.

  • Mattress Type: All-Natural Latex
  • Customer Rating: 4.9 out of 5
  • Firmness: Dual-Sided: Plush and Firm
  • Warranty: 20-Year Limited Warranty

Buy It, Zenhaven, $2,399 for a Queen,

11. Best Organic Mattress: Brooklyn Bloom

For side sleepers looking for a mattress that balances their own needs with the environment’s, the Brooklyn Bloom hybrid mattress is one that lives up to the hype. Though the mattress is available in three levels of firmness––soft, medium, and firm––The Sleep Doctor recommends the soft firmness for side sleepers, especially for ones who like the feeling of being hugged by their mattress. The soft firmness also gives you greater pressure point relief and gentler support for your body’s natural contours.

The Brooklyn Bloom features sustainably sourced Joma Wool™ and organic cotton combined in a plush top cover, so it provides exceptional – and natural – breathability and moisture wicking. What side sleepers will probably find most appealing is the Brooklyn Bloom’s 3” top layer of Talalay latex, which delivers a unique buoyant quality that relaxes muscles and relieves tension. Beneath that, an 8” base of up to 1,032 individually encased coils delivers pressure point relief while decreasing motion transfer between partners.

And for side sleepers who want their mattress to be constructed from sustainably sourced materials, the Bloom Hybrid is the way to go. In fact, the Talalay latex used in the Bloom Hybrid is Oeko-Tex class 1 certified, which means it’s free of harmful chemicals and grown according to strict guidelines. Additionally, all the foams in the Brooklyn Bloom mattress are CertiPUR-US® certified, so they meet some of the most rigorous standards for emissions, content, performance, and durability.

  • Mattress Type: All-Natural Hybrid
  • Customer Rating: 5 out of 5
  • Firmness: Soft, Medium, and Firm
  • Warranty: 10-Year Limited Warranty

Buy It, Brooklyn Bloom, $1,799 for a Queen,

12. Best Soft Mattress: Amerisleep AS4

Best Mattress for Side Sleepers

For side sleepers seeking a softer mattress to sink into and drift away to a better night’s sleep, the Amerisleep AS4 is the ticket. Made up of three layers of memory foam, this bed was developed especially for side sleepers and soft mattress lovers alike.

Just because this mattress is one of the softer options in the Amerisleep mattress lineup, does not mean it skimps on support. Amerisleep developed a special support layer that is used in each of their mattresses, and it was designed to be the perfect balance of support and cushion. So while you get to enjoy the “hugging” sensation foam beds are known for, you won’t have to worry about waking up with aches and pains from a lack of overall support.

  • Mattress Type: Memory Foam
  • Customer Rating: 4.7 out of 5
  • Firmness: Medium-Soft
  • Warranty: 20 Years 

Buy it, Amerisleep AS4, $1,449 for a Queen,

Some Parting Words for Side Sleepers

Don’t sacrifice a good night’s sleep by sleeping on the wrong mattress. As a side sleeper, remember that you’re in the majority, so there are plenty of mattresses on the market designed to cater to your needs. But that doesn’t mean every mattress marketed toward side sleepers will do the trick. Use The Sleep Doctor’s list to find the right mattress for you.

Sources for this article

Ancuelle, Victor. 2015. “Effects of an adapted mattress in musculoskeletal pain and sleep quality.” Sleep Science (Vol. 8, Number 3),

Breus, Michael. 2019. “How Your Sleep Position Affects Your Health, Your Dreams And Your Personality.” The Sleep Doctor (blog), October 9, 2018.

Brooklyn Bedding. 2020. “What is Talalay Latex?”

Casper. 2020. “Wave Hybrid Mattress.”

Foam Factory, Inc. 2014. “Understanding the Temperature Sensitivity of Memory Foam Mattresses and Other Products.” Mattress Technical Info,

Google Patents. 2003. “Cooling mattress for sunbathing.”

Gordon, S. Buether, P. 2009. “Age and lateral sleep position: A pilot study. IJAHSP (Vol. 7, Number 1), January, 2009

Hungs, Marcel. 2010. University of California Center for Sleep Medicine.

John Hopkins Medicine, 2017. “Choosing the Best Sleep Position.” John Hopkins Medicine, June 15, 2017.

Journal of Chiropractic Medicine. 2017. “Effects of Mattress Material on Body Pressure Profiles.”

Katz LC, Just R, Castell DO. 1994. “Body position affects recumbent postprandial reflux.” J Clin Gastroenterol. June 1994;18(4):280-283.

Koloksta, D. 2012. “Phase Change Materials.” Science Direct.

Northwestern Medicine. 2020. “Picking a Side for Sleep.”

Physio Med Limited. 2020. “Help Guide: Sleeping Postures and Positions.”

Shelton, Frederick. 1998. “Full-body interface pressure testing as a method for performance evaluation of clinical support surfaces” Applied Ergonomics (Vol. 29, Number 6),

Stuart, Annie. 2010. “Memory Foam Pros and Cons.”

Symmetry Health Chiropractic Center. 2020. “Low Back Pain Solution #1: Spine Alignment.”

Talalay Global. 2017. “What Makes Talalay’s Latex Foam So Special?” KTT Enterprises,

Thomsen. 2019. “Why is Vita Talalay Latex Cool in Summer and Warm in Winter.”

Titan Mattress. 2020. “What is the Difference Between A Firm & A Plus Size Mattress?”

Amerisleep. 2020. “Our Technology.”