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A new mattress isn’t a cure-all for back pain. But if your current mattress is sagging and exacerbating your aches and pains, an upgrade may provide some relief.

In this article, we look at ten of the best mattress options for people with back pain who primarily sleep on their side. These include mattresses with a medium-firm feel that may help provide pressure relief and help properly align the spine.

When making our mattress selections, here are the main things we take into consideration:

  • Company policies. We look for companies with extended in-home trial periods — because who wants to bet on a mattress being comfortable without trying it first? — and dependable shipping and return policies.
  • Company reputation and transparency. Brands included below have a positive reputation and no shady business practices. This also means they haven’t been involved in recent lawsuits regarding their products or customer service.
  • Customer reviews. Obviously, this is a biggie. Each mattress has rave reviews from customers. We also focused on mattresses with positive reviews, specifically from side sleepers with back pain.
  • Safety. All mattresses meet federal flammability requirements.

Pricing guide

Mattress pricing varies a lot, so we’ve included this pricing key for you to quickly scan and identify general pricing for each product listed below.

Prices are based on a queen-size mattress:

  • $ = under $1,200
  • $$ = $1,200–$2,500
  • $$$ = over $2,500

Remember that you might have to spend more if you need to replace your bedding or purchase a new bed frame.

Best adjustable mattress for side sleepers with back pain

Saatva Solaire Mattress

  • Price: $$$ ($2,525–$5,050)
  • Type: latex and foam
  • Height: 13 inches
  • Free shipping & returns: free shipping, $99 return processing fee
  • Size range: twin XL, full, queen, king, split king, California king, split California king

Pros

  • adjustable firmness on both sides with 50 settings
  • luxurious and comfortable with pressure-relieving layers
  • very breathable and cooling

Cons

  • larger sizes tending to slope on the edges
  • reportedly too soft

Adjusting a mattress exactly the way you like it will no doubt help you sleep better. With the Saatva Solaire, you can choose between 50 firmness options and pick the one that provides the ideal support for your back.

An added bonus is the dual air chambers. You can control each side of the bed independently, making it a great mattress pick for couples with different needs and sleep preferences.

Best cooling mattress for side sleepers with back pain

Saatva Loom & Leaf

  • Price: $$ ($1,095–$2,915)
  • Type: memory foam
  • Height: 12 inches
  • Free shipping & returns: free shipping, $99 return processing fee
  • Size range: twin, twin XL, full, queen, king, split king, California king, split California king

Pros

  • solid and firm, yet comfortable
  • holds shape well
  • no motion transfer

Cons

  • too firm for some
  • on the warmer side

You can choose between two firmness levels with this mattress, though side sleepers will probably prefer the relaxed firm option.

Materials in the mattress are organic, Global Organic Textile Standard (GOTS) certified, and CertiPUR-US certified. The gel-infused top layer is designed to help hot sleepers better regulate their body temperature overnight.

Reviews for this mattress are overwhelmingly positive. One reviewer says they can sleep on their side now without pain. Another notes that they immediately noticed a difference in pain after sleeping on the Loom & Leaf.

Best hybrid mattress for side sleepers with back pain

Casper Wave Hybrid Mattress

  • Price: $$ ($1,845–$4,595)
  • Type: foam
  • Height: 13 inches
  • Free shipping & returns: yes
  • Size range: twin, twin XL, full, queen, king, California king

Pros

  • comfortable and cool for side sleepers
  • feels lightweight yet supportive
  • helps relieve aches and pains

Cons

  • reportedly too firm
  • may feel motion transfer

Reviewers with back pain report experiencing reduced episodes of pain when sleeping on the Casper Wave Hybrid.

One side sleeper with back pain credits the mattress for completely eliminating the aches and pains they felt with their old mattress. Another reviewer who describes themselves as a mature athlete says that the mattress helps relieve pressure points on sore joints.

However, a few people complain that the mattress is a bit too hard for their liking.

Best memory foam mattress for side sleepers with back pain

Nectar Memory Foam Mattress

  • Price: $ ($399–$1,138)
  • Type: memory foam
  • Height: 12 inches
  • Free shipping & returns: yes
  • Size range: twin, twin XL, full, queen, king, California king, split king

Pros

  • five layers for comfort, including a breathable, cooling cover
  • reduces pain and discomfort for many users
  • good quality and cost-effective

Cons

  • not as long-lasting as others
  • may sag in the middle

This foam mattress has a medium-firm feel that reviewers love. It’s also CertiPUR-US certified, which means it’s made with materials that are safe for the environment.

People with shoulder discomfort and back pain say the mattress helped eliminate morning body aches and pains. Reviewers also mention that the mattress provides excellent pressure relief that helps reduce joint pain.

Reviewers say the memory foam is supportive yet soft. Its outer layer is also made with moisture-wicking material that’s designed to help regulate body temperature.

Best budget mattress for side sleepers with back pain

DreamCloud Luxury Hybrid

  • Price: $ ($999–$1,299)
  • Type: hybrid
  • Height: 14 inches
  • Free shipping & returns: yes
  • Size range: twin, twin XL, full, queen, king, California king

Pros

  • reportedly, soft, luxurious feel courtesy of the cashmere cover
  • pressure point relief courtesy of the gel memory foam
  • reportedly supportive and comfortable

Cons

  • according to some users, noticeable motion transfer
  • on the firmer side

This hybrid mattress features a blend of memory foam and individually wrapped coils.

Reviewers dock it points for poor edge support, but people with back pain say it helped eliminate morning aches and stiffness.

A few side sleepers remark that it’s still a tad too firm for their liking, but combination sleepers who also tend to end up on their side give it top marks for comfort.

Best mattress for side sleepers with higher body weight and back pain

The Big Fig Mattress

  • Price: $$ ($1,399–$2,799)
  • Type: hybrid
  • Height: 13 inches
  • Free shipping & returns: yes
  • Size range: twin, twin XL, full, queen, king, California king, split king

Pros

  • high-density foam eliminates mattress sag
  • individually-wrapped coils offering more back support and pain relief
  • cooling technology to help those who sleep warm

Cons

  • may feel tufting underneath sheets
  • according to some, not enough hip support

This hybrid mattress is designed to be supportive especially for people with higher body weight. According to the company, it’s capable of supporting up to 1,100 pounds for two people, or 550 pounds for one. Dense foam and individually wrapped coils are intended to help combat premature sagging.

Because it’s designed for people who weigh more than 250 pounds, it will feel harder for lower body weights. But despite some customer comments that the mattress is too hard, reviewers say adding a topper helps immensely.

Combination sleepers with back pain say switching positions is way more comfortable with this mattress. Others also share that body and back pain were drastically reduced when sleeping on The Big Fig.

Best mattress to reduce shoulder and hip pressure

Helix Midnight Mattress

  • Price: $$ ($799–$1,399)
  • Type: hybrid
  • Height: 11.5 inches
  • Free shipping & returns: yes
  • Size range: twin, twin XL, full, queen, king, California king

Pros

  • relieves pressure to reduce pain
  • cooling cover available
  • designed for breathability and airflow

Cons

  • heavy and can be tough to move
  • reportedly too firm

If you live with hip and shoulder pressure along with back pain, this Helix mattress may help. With middle layers to support the contours of your body, it also contains extra cushioning designed to protect those sore pressure points, offering you more overall comfort and relief when you wake up.

Plus, the mattress is considered medium firm, making it a suitable option for couples who might have different preferences. It also comes with a 10-year limited warranty.

Best latex mattress for side sleepers with back pain

Birch Natural Mattress

  • Price: $$ ($949–$1,699)
  • Type: hybrid
  • Height: 11 inches
  • Free shipping & returns: yes
  • Size range: twin, twin XL, full, queen, king, California king

Pros

  • eco-friendly, made with natural materials
  • steel coils limiting motion transfer
  • comfortable for any sleeping position

Cons

  • skews on the softer side
  • a few reports of sagging along the edges

This breathable, organic mattress promotes airflow and provides pressure and contour to your body for a comfortable, quality sleep. Since it’s medium firm, it’s suitable for side sleepers (but may also be a good choice if you toss and turn, moving between sleeping on your stomach or back). The organic cotton cover is reportedly very soft. This mattress is GOTS Certified.

This mattress comes with a 25-year warranty.

Best hypoallergenic mattress for side sleepers with back pain

Puffy Lux Hybrid Mattress

  • Price: $$$ ($1,799–$2,649)
  • Type: memory foam
  • Height: 12 inches
  • Free shipping & returns: yes
  • Size range: twin, twin XL, full, queen, king, California king

Pros

  • layered system, offering coolness, comfort, contouring, and support
  • extra spinal support
  • easy-wash, stain-resistant cover

Cons

  • reportedly skews on the softer side, which can aggravate back pain
  • may not be suitable for lighter-weight stomach or back sleepers

If you have allergies, you likely know selecting high quality, hypoallergenic bedding of all types is important. This includes your mattress. The breathable, comfortable Puffy Lux comes with an easy-wash, stain-resistant cover designed to prevent dust mite buildup and allergens.

The mattress also features body-adapting foam designed to reduce strain at your pressure points that can help with added comfort, more support, and better rest. It comes with a lifetime warranty.

Best mattress for back and side sleepers

Winkbeds GravityLux Mattress

  • Price: $$ ($1,199–$1,999)
  • Type: memory foam
  • Height: 11 inches
  • Free shipping & returns: yes
  • Size range: twin, twin XL, full, queen, king, California king

Pros

  • no motion transfer
  • keeps you cool
  • high quality materials and construction

Cons

  • may not relieve pain in all spots like hips and back
  • reportedly mattress sinks and is slightly on the softer side

If you find you shift to and from side and back positions in the night, finding a durable mattress that’s supportive in those spots can be necessary for quality sleep. This Winkbeds mattress is designed to address those needs.

Its patented memory foam relieves pressure with tiny shock-absorbing cushions, and its targeted foam pushes in the lumbar area and hips, and plies in areas that need gentler support like the legs and shoulders. It comes with a lifetime warranty.

MattressBest forProsConsPrice rangeFree shipping & returns?Size range
Saatva Solaire Mattressthose needing an adjustable mattressadjustable firmness, pressure-relieving, and breathableedges on king size mattress can slope$2,525–$5,050free shipping, $99 return processing feetwin XL, full, queen, king, split king, California king, split California king
Saatva Loom & Leaf Mattressthose who sleep warmholds shape well, no motion transferquite firm$1,095–$2,915free shipping, $99 return processing feetwin, twin XL, full, queen, king, split king, California king, split California
Casper Wave Hybrid Mattressa good hybrid mattresscooling, lightweight, supportivemay feel motion transfer$1,845–$4,595yestwin, twin XL, full, queen, king, California king
Nectar Memory Foam Mattress quality memory foammultilayers for comfort, great valuecan sag in the middle$399–$1,138yestwin, twin XL, full, queen, king, California king, split king
DreamCloud Luxury Hybrid Mattressthose looking to stay within a certain budgetsoft cashmere cover, relieves pressure pointson the firm side$999–$1,299yestwin, twin XL, full, queen, king, California king
The Big Fig Mattressthose with higher body weightno sag, great support & pain reliefmay feel tufting$1,399–$2,799yestwin, twin XL, full, queen, king, California king, split king
Helix Midnight Mattressreducing shoulder & hip pressurerelieves pressure, great airflowhard to move$799–1,399yestwin, twin XL, full, queen, king, California king
Birch Natural Mattressthose looking for eco-friendly latexmade with natural materials, limited motion transferedges may sag$949–$1,699yestwin, twin XL, full, queen, king, California king
Puffy Lux Mattressthose with allergiesgood contouring & support, spinal supportsoft, can exacerbate back pain$1,799–$2,649yestwin, twin XL, full, queen, king, California king
Winkbeds GravityLux Mattressback & side sleeperscooling, high qualitymay not relieve hip or back pain$1,199–$1,999yestwin, twin XL, full, queen, king, California king

Back pain is a common complaint among U.S. adults. And trying to sleep with back pain is no joke. It can keep you up and night and reduce the overall quality of your shut-eye.

While you should avoid companies that make wild claims about their products — including promises to end your back pain altogether — there are some things to look out for if you’re wanting to alleviate pain while you sleep.

Consider firmness level

You may assume that a harder mattress is more supportive and therefore a better choice for back pain. But that’s not necessarily true.

Studies show that sleep quality and back discomfort are affected by factors like height, weight, age, and movement during the night.

Your preferences also come into play. Some people may like the feel of a softer mattress, while others may prefer something firmer.

If you’re not sure where you fit, opt for something that’s rated medium firm. It’s a good middle ground. And according to a 2015 research review, medium-firm, self-adjusted mattresses are ideal for helping with spinal alignment.

A medium-firm mattress is also a solid choice if you’re primarily a side sleeper. A too-firm mattress can create unwanted pressure points when sleeping on your side. Some softness allows your body to sink into the mattress a bit, helping correctly align your spine.

Keep type in mind

While some evidence points to foam as the superior material for back pain relief, some people just can’t stand memory foam’s feel.

Thankfully, many mattresses nowadays combine the pressure-relieving properties of foam with the supportive feel of coils. Opt for a hybrid mattress if you’re looking for extra support.

Try before you buy

How can you tell whether a mattress will feel comfortable for your unique body? The only way to know for sure is to try it out.

Always pick a company that offers a trial period. The company should offer easy, no-hassle returns, so you can exchange or return it without a fuss if you dislike it.

If you live with back pain, the wrong mattress can exacerbate your discomfort. Likewise, the wrong mattress can cause back pain. When a mattress is unsupportive or not supportive enough, it can strain muscles, reinforce poor sleeping posture, and cause spinal misalignment.

Choosing the right mattress for your needs can help minimize back pain, which may help increase sleep quality. A comfortable, supportive mattress can help keep your spine aligned, which can help you rest throughout the night and help alleviate back pain the next day.

What is the best mattress for side sleepers with hip pain?

Although every mattress will feel different for each person, the Helix Midnight Mattress is a great option for side sleepers.

What is the best mattress for side sleepers with shoulder pain?

Consumer reviews note that the Helix Midnight Mattress and the Nectar Memory Foam Mattress have helped side sleepers with shoulder pain relief.

What mattress is best for lower back pain?

Since every mattress will provide a different sleep experience for different people, there is not one mattress preference for lower back pain. However, reportedly, the Saatva Solaire, Saatva Loom & Leaf, DreamCloud Luxury Hybrid, and Birch Natural mattresses have been shown to reduce or eliminate lower back pain.

If your back is aching because of your mattress, it won’t just ruin your morning. It can interrupt your sleep and seriously take a toll on your overall health.

Replacing your old, sagging mattress can help relieve back discomfort. If you sleep on your side, look for a quality mattress that offers medium-firm support and comes with a generous in-home trial period.


Steph Coelho is a freelance writer with chronic migraine who has a particular interest in health and wellness. When she’s not click-clacking away on her keyboard, she’s probably nose-deep in a good book.