Some may argue that stomach sleeping is the most comfortable way to sleep, but experts say that it isn't necessarily the healthiest way to sleep.
“This position puts the most pressure on your spine’s muscles and joints because it flattens the natural curve of your spine,” says Raymond J. Hah, MD a spine surgeon at Keck Medicine of USC in a recent post on the University’s blog. “Sleeping on your stomach also forces you to turn your neck, which can cause neck and upper back pain.”
But there is good news for stomach sleepers: The right mattress will support your spine in a healthy posture and relieve stress from pressure points to keep you pain-free.
Stomach sleepers should look for a supportive mattress that provides enough pushback to keep the spine from sinking too far into the mattress and getting pulled out of its natural alignment. Also, choosing a bed with a plush surface—such as a padded extra layer or contouring pillow top—can provide pressure relief to the chest and shoulders, and in turn, prevent neck discomfort.
These are the 10 best mattresses for stomach sleepers in 2021:
Keeping your spine in a healthy and neutral posture as you sleep is a crucial part of keeping your back pain-free. Stomach sleepers should look for a bed that supports your body’s curves and prevents the spine from being twisted into an unnatural position. Not only will this help you sleep better, but it’ll also promote better posture.
Stomach sleepers need a mattress firm enough to keep the hips and midsection from pushing too far into the mattress (which causes the spine to sink into misalignment). Look for a mattress that has at least a medium or medium-firm firmness level to make sure that you have ample support. If you prefer a plusher feel, consider a mattress with an added pillow top or buy your own soft mattress topper to make the bed feel a little softer without compromising support.
Stomach sleepers may find that memory foam mattresses can be helpful for providing spine alignment and pressure relief. Similarly, latex mattresses can be responsive and also help with pressure relief, but they won't feel as soft as memory foam. Innerspring and hybrid mattresses are firmer than foam beds, benefitting stomach sleepers by offering ample support. If your bed feels too firm, add a plush mattress topper to relieve pressure on the shoulders and chest.
Choosing the right pillow can elevate your sleep experience if you sleep on your stomach. Pick a flat pillow, or sleep without one under your neck—a pillow that’s too thick may push your posture out of alignment and cause cramping and neck pain. You can also place a pillow under your pelvis to help prop up your hips and prevent them from shifting too far into the bed as you sleep.
Ready to find your next mattress? We’ve rounded up the best mattresses for stomach sleepers based on feedback from Mattress Advisor’s mattress review team. They’ve conducted over 1,200 hours of in-house lab testing to evaluate over 150 mattresses on criteria that benefit stomach sleepers.
Based on the findings, we outlined 12 top-reviewed mattresses for stomach sleepers that’ll make a huge difference in the quality of your shuteye. All of these mattress brands are reputable companies with a long-standing appreciation for a good night’s sleep. Plus, each of the below options can be easily purchased online and come with generous trial periods. Happy snoozing!
Along with a layer of eco-friendly memory foam and innerspring coils, the bed is topped with a plush pillow layer for an extra touch of decadence and comfort. The Saatva earned a near-perfect score in Mattress Advisor’s spinal alignment testing, mostly thanks to its edge-support layer that ensures ample lumbar support across the entire surface of the bed. It’s available in three firmness levels, though the ‘firm’ option may be best for the stomach sleeping position.
This mattress also comes with free white glove delivery service, which means that Saatva representatives will come to your house and set up your new mattress after removing your old one at no extra charge.
If you’re looking for a bargain, the Nectar mattress is a premium memory foam bed at a budget price. Made with layers of cooling gel and traditional memory foam, this bed has superior pressure relief for stomach sleepers. Sagging is a common issue with memory foam, but the Nectar tested exceptionally well, ranking high on durability and edge support. The Nectar’s year-long sleep trial period and lifetime warranty make this deal even sweeter.
The Helix Midnight Luxe is a hybrid mattress that combines innerspring coils with layers of memory foam. The combination of coils and foam provides the best of both worlds for stomach sleepers by offering the targeted lumbar support of typical innerspring beds with the superior pressure relief that foam is known for. And since it earned a near-perfect score in Mattress Advisor’s cooling test thanks to its built-in breathable cooling cover and temperature-regulating gel memory foam, it’s also a top choice for hot sleepers.
Many people prefer the traditional feel of an innerspring bed, but coils alone don’t provide the pressure relief that stomach sleepers need to get the best sleep possible—and that’s where the DreamCloud comes into play. It incorporates the highlights of each mattress type by layering breathable memory foam layers on top of a pocketed micro-coil compression system. The innerspring coils provide springy support and responsiveness, while the foam layers and a cashmere pillow top cradle your curves to keep you comfortable throughout the night.
Natural latex is a pricier mattress material, but the GhostBed offers an affordable alternative. This mattress uses synthetic latex, so you can still enjoy the supportive, responsive feel of latex without paying a hefty price tag for it. The GhostBed is perfect for stomach sleepers who need back support and responsiveness.
If you’re a stomach sleeper and share your bed with a partner, you’ll want to look for a bed that supports both of your needs—and the Leesa is a top option. This all-foam mattress has a middle-of-the-road firmness level that supports stomach sleepers and their partners who may sleep in a different position. The foam layers are also soundless and absorb vibrations to limit motion transfer as you and your partner move throughout the night. It’s also helpful when you’re using your bed for activities other than sleeping—good motion isolation makes sex much easier, for example.
Athletes and active people will want to look for a bed that helps their muscles and joints repair as they sleep, and the Bear Hybrid is designed to do just that. It’s made with a combination of memory foam, supportive coils, and a cooling mattress cover. Plus, the memory foam used in this mattress is infused with cooling gel, which helps wick away heat even more for a bed that stays cool to the touch. And since it’s firm enough to keep the back and neck supported as you sleep face down, it’s a great pick for stomach sleepers who regularly exert physical energy.
If you sleep face down and can’t decide which firmness level you like best, the Layla mattress is worth checking out. This flippable memory foam bed has different mattress firmness options on each side, both of which are well-suited for stomach sleepers. The softer side is a medium-firmness level for those who want a balance of support and plushness, while the firmer level has a little less give for those who prefer more stability. Both sides of the Layla mattress are surrounded by a cooling gel mattress cover to keep you cool and comfortable.
If you prefer a firmer mattress that offers proper support without skimping on pressure relief, the Brooklyn Bedding Plank mattress is a great option to consider. This flippable memory foam option allows you to choose between two firmness levels—firm and ultra firm—by simply flipping your mattress over. Even if you go with the firmer side, it still gently cradles joints to relieve pressure and adapt to your movements as you snooze.
Some memory foam mattresses have a reputation for being overly plush, so much so that you feel like you’re stuck in your bed. The Casper mattress, however, offers the cushioning and pressure relief that memory foam provides while still being firm enough that your body weight will be distributed evenly across the surface. It’s particularly great for stomach sleepers because it has a zoned support system that keeps the midsection and back supported. As an added plus, the Casper earned a perfect score in the Mattress Advisor responsiveness test, meaning it responds to movement by springing back into shape immediately—so you’ll never feel like you’re sinking throughout the night.
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