How to Choose the Best Mattress for Side Sleepers

Rachel Pardo

May 26 2021 comments- 4

Having a good night’s rest is such a novelty nowadays.  We have so much on our minds, and with smartphones and social media, it can be difficult to wind down and relax.  Sleeping well is a major factor in having a healthy lifestyle, and choosing the right mattress has a big impact on your sleep quality. One of the main determinants of which mattress is best for you is your sleep position. The best mattress for side sleepers is going to be different than the best mattress for someone who sleeps on their back or stomach.

If you sleep on your side, you’re in good company. The side is actually the most common sleeping position for adults.  According to Healthline, sleeping on your side may even have certain health benefits.

The downside to side sleeping is that it can place a lot of pressure on your shoulders, hips, and knees.  When searching for the best mattress for side sleepers, you want to look for a mattress that will add cushion to those pressure points.

Best Mattress Firmness for Side Sleepers

Almost all mattress companies follow the same guide to firmness. It is a scale from one to ten, with one being the softest and ten being the firmest.  The recommendation for side sleepers is to stick to a bed that is anywhere between soft and medium.  Have in mind that if you go too soft there won’t be much support, so 3-6 is your best bet.

Best Type of Mattress for Side Sleepers

As mentioned above, the most important factor for choosing a side sleeper’s mattress is the firmness level. There are multiple types of mattresses that can provide soft to medium firmness. These are some of the most common among the best type of mattress for side sleepers:

Pocket Spring Mattresses

While traditional innerspring mattresses may not be comfortable for side sleepers, pocket springs can provide more individualized support. Because pocket springs are individually wrapped coils, motion doesn’t transfer from one coil to the next. This makes it a great choice for couples who want good motion isolation. They can provide good support while not being overly firm.

One popular pocket spring mattress for side sleepers is the Silentnight Deluxe Box Top Mirapocket 2000 Limited Edition Mattress.  It’s a bestseller, and for good reason!  This plush mattress has an excellent balance of support and comfort.  This mattress includes 2000 pocket coils plus a cushioned box top to ensure side sleepers will feel only comfort — not the coils underneath.  This mattress is fashioned from fresh and breathable hypoallergenic comfort fibres which cushion your pressure points and provide excellent temperature control.  It is made in the UK, has a 5-year guarantee, and free next-day delivery.  It’s rated firmness is “soft-medium.”

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Memory Foam Mattresses

Memory foam is made from a substance called viscoelastic. Originally, NASA invented memory foam in the 1960s for seat cushioning to absorb some of the impact on take-off.  You can imagine the support it will give your pressure points down here on Earth.  Memory foam contours and moulds to the body in response to both your body’s heat as well as your weight. This makes it an excellent choice for cushioning pressure points in side sleepers. It is also a great option for couples who don’t want to be woken each time someone turns.  However, the downside is that it gets very warm. This is why gel memory foam and even perforated foam were invented!

We recommend the medium-firm Nectar memory foam mattress above others. It uses great technology to create comfort and support while preventing you from overheating at night.  The Nectar mattress includes five layers. The top layer is composed of a quilted cushioned mattress cover that is both soft and breathable.  Next comes the dynamic support layer that is designed to promote airflow with its open-cell foam. Pressure-relieving foam follows, which is perfect for side sleepers who want to cushion their hips and shoulders. The support base layer includes seven zones of varying support levels to match body alignment. Finally, the positioning base material stabilizes and supports the layers above.

nectar memory foam mattress

Nectar is also considered one of the best mattresses for side sleepers thanks to its generous benefits, including a 365-night home trial period. Yes, you read that right!  You can try out the mattress for a whole year, and if you decide that you don’t like it, you can get your money back.  Nectar also stands out by offering a Forever Warranty, whereas many other mattress brands only offer warranties of up to 10 years.

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Hybrid Mattresses

Also known as a combination mattress, a hybrid mattress is a multi-layered mattress that combines spring and foam (or latex) layers to create a good balance of support and comfort.  This type of mattress is a great choice for side sleepers because it provides you with the bounce and support of a pocket spring mattress, as well as the comfort of foam.

simba sleep mattress
We recommend the Simba Hybrid Mattress.  This mattress is made up of five layers and up to 2,500 springs each within its own pockets.  They are smaller and cone-shaped which allow for each spring to individually respond to your body, hugging all those pressure points that are so crucial for a side sleeper.  Simba mattresses offer a 200-night trial risk-free, 0% financing, and a 10-year warranty.

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The Bottom Line

Let’s review!  Side sleeping is the most common sleeping position for adults. When choosing the best mattress for side sleepers, it’s crucial to choose one that cushions pressure points (shoulders, hips, knees).

For these reasons, we recommend soft-medium or medium firmness mattresses.  The best type of mattress for side sleepers may be pocket spring, hybrid, or memory foam. Firmness levels may vary, so check out the firmness rating of each mattress you’re considering. If you’re choosing memory foam, you should make sure that the mattress includes cooling features such as gel or perforations to make up for the fact foam generally isn’t very breathable.  Of course, any time you buy a new mattress, it’s a good idea to choose a company that gives a lengthy warranty and trial period, free shipping, and fair prices.

For more information, check out our reviews on some of the UK’s most recommended mattresses.

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Questions & Answers


Many thanks for bringing some clarity to the very confusing process of replacing our worn out mattress. Have sent this to husband to read.. Being better informed will give us wider options and a great chance of finding the right support we both need.
Thank against

Gila Holder

Thanks for your feedback! Happy to be of help.

Jackie Hanrahan

What’s the best support mattress for a very large side sleeper.

Gila Holder

Hi Jackie,
We recommend the Silentnight Deluxe Box Top Mirapocket 2000 Limited Edition Mattress. It is a hybrid of innerspring and cushioned box top so will give you the best combination of support and comfort. The coils are designed to support any weight, and the box top allows the mattress to adjust to support your body as you sleep on your side.

Top5 Mattresses UK
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