Stomach sleepers have unique needs when it comes to selecting a mattress. A lot of pressure is put on the neck and spine while sleeping on the stomach, which can lead to a misaligned spine, back pain, and neck pain. Stomach sleepers often look for a firmer mattress that can keep the spine in alignment by preventing their body from sinking in too deeply.
Finding the best mattress for stomach sleepers is not easy. With so many mattress options on the market, determining which features and designs provide the support that stomach sleepers need can be a challenge. Keep reading to learn about shopping tips and recommendations to help select the ideal mattress to stay comfortable and supported when sleeping on your stomach.
- BEST OVERALL: HELIX Dawn Mattress
- BEST BANG FOR THE BUCK: Zinus Support Plus Pocket Spring Hybrid Mattress
- BEST INNERSPRING: Saatva Classic Luxury Firm Mattress
- BEST HYBRID: DreamCloud Luxury Hybrid Mattress
- BEST FIRM: Brooklyn Bedding Plank Mattress
- BEST ORGANIC: AWARA Organic Luxury Hybrid Mattress
- BEST FOR BACK PAIN: HELIX Dusk Luxe Mattress
- BEST FOR HEAVY INDIVIDUALS: The WinkBed Luxury Firm Mattress
- BEST FOR ATHLETES: Bear Hybrid Mattress
What to Consider When Choosing the Best Mattress For Stomach Sleepers
From choosing among the different mattress types to finding a mattress that offers the right amount of firmness, there’s a lot to consider for a stomach sleeper. Read about some of the most critical considerations to help determine which features are important to you.
There are several mattress types on the market, with each offering different features and benefits—and some may be better suited for stomach sleepers than others. Below are explanations of the five most common types of mattresses:
- Innerspring mattresses provide even support, making them a popular choice for many stomach sleepers. The coils on an innerspring mattress make them firmer than some other mattress types, enabling them to prevent a stomach sleeper’s body from sinking into the mattress too deep, putting the spine out of alignment.
- Foam mattresses, such as memory-foam mattresses, soften when heat and pressure are applied to them. This allows the mattress to conform to the shape of a body, which can help stomach sleepers find relief from pressure points and get the support they need to sleep comfortably. Some have CertiPUR-US–certified foam made without the use of ozone depleters, heavy metals, formaldehyde, phthalates, or toxic flame retardants. CertiPUR-US–certified foam must pass a test to confirm that it meets low volatile organic compound (VOC) emission standards for indoor air quality of less than 0.5 parts per million.
- Latex mattresses can be contouring like a foam mattress, but they work to more evenly distribute an individual’s weight. This means stomach sleepers won’t sink as deeply into the mattress and can keep their spines in better alignment while they sleep.
- Hybrid mattresses integrate aspects of different mattress types to offer a good mix of support and contouring. They typically have an innerspring core covered with a comfort layer. The comfort layer adds padding over the innerspring core and may be made of memory foam, latex, polyfoam, micro-coils, cotton, or wool. Hybrid mattresses may be a good option for stomach sleepers if the comfort layer isn’t too soft.
- Pillow-top mattresses feature a very soft and plush top layer. Because of their plush design, pillow-top mattresses are typically not an ideal choice for stomach sleepers, as they don’t offer the necessary support and can cause the hips of a stomach sleeper to sink too deep into the mattress. This places the hips lower than the rest of the body and can put the spine out of alignment.
Finding a mattress that keeps the spine in alignment is usually a top priority for stomach sleepers. A spine in proper alignment is straight and does not bend or twist. When the spine is properly aligned and the body is in a neutral position, it also can boost blood flow, reduce the amount of pressure placed on the circulatory system, improve posture, and reduce back pain.
Keeping the spine in alignment for stomach sleepers usually means a mattress that offers enough support to prevent the hips from sinking in too deeply while also being soft enough to allow the shoulders to sink in a bit. This position will help keep the spine straight. Some mattresses offer a zoned support layer of innerspring coils designed to provide more support for the hips and midsection while also offering a little more give around the shoulders. This feature can be ideal for stomach sleepers since it can help ensure the spine stays in alignment.
Density and Firmness
Mattresses are rated on a firmness scale ranging from 1 to 10. Lower numbers on the scale indicate a softer mattress, while higher numbers indicate a firmer mattress. Stomach sleepers typically look for a firm mattress to help keep their bodies properly aligned.
Overly soft mattresses let the hips and midsection of a stomach sleeper sink down too much, placing the spine at an uncomfortable angle. Mattresses that are too firm keep the head and shoulders elevated above the lower body, also putting the spine at an angle. Both of these sleeping scenarios can lead to lower back pain and general discomfort. Take note of the overall firmness level of a mattress. In general, stomach sleepers prefer a mattress with a firmness rating between about 6 and 8. For heavier individuals, a mattress that is at least an 8 will likely be more comfortable.
In addition to the firmness of a mattress, also consider the density of its foam. High-density foams are more conforming to the body and can offer better support. Low density foams don’t offer as much support and may not be ideal for stomach sleepers. Foam density is measured in pounds per cubic foot. High-density foams will have a weight of 5 pounds or more per cubic foot, medium-density foams will have a weight around 4 pounds per cubic foot, and low-density foams will have a weight of less than 3 pounds per cubic foot.
Finding a mattress that offers the right amount of contouring is important for a stomach sleeper. Contouring refers to how much a mattress conforms to the body. A comfortable mattress contours to the body enough to prevent too much pressure from being placed on pressure points. However, a mattress that is too contouring and cradling can place the spine out of alignment and lead to pain and discomfort.
When shopping for the best mattress for stomach sleepers, be sure to select one that offers a good balance of both support and contouring to prevent too much sinkage. In general, stomach sleepers may benefit from a firmer mattress that is topped with a memory-foam or latex layer that will allow the mattress to contour to their body to alleviate pressure.
The pressure relief offered by a mattress is closely related to how contouring it is. The pressure points on a body are the areas where the greatest amount of pressure is felt when lying down. Finding a mattress that is contouring enough to offer a more cushioned feel on these pressure points will be ideal. For stomach sleepers, these areas are the shoulders, upper torso, and knees. In contrast, the pressure points for back sleepers are on the shoulders, heels, and tailbone. For side sleepers, the hips, knees, and shoulders are the pressure points.
Mattresses that offer some contouring to the body, without allowing the hips to sink too low, are best for pressure relief. Look for mattresses with a layer of memory foam or latex foam. When heat and pressure from the body are applied to memory foam, it makes the foam softer and allows a body to sink comfortably into it. This can create a cradle-like position and offer pressure-point relief. Latex mattresses work similarly, but they don’t require body heat. This allows latex to nicely conform to a body but also means it won’t get as hot as memory foam during sleep. This combination of contouring and cooling can promote a restful night’s sleep.
Consider whether finding a cooling mattress or one that offers temperature regulation is important. A hot sleeper may want to look for a mattress designed to promote airflow that won’t retain heat. Mattresses with a lower-density foam allow for more airflow than those made with a high-density foam.
Some manufacturers incorporate special fabrics or materials into the design of their mattresses to allow them to keep individuals cooler. For example, the cover for a mattress may be made from a more breathable fabric, like Tencel, which wicks moisture away. Phase Change Materials (PCM) fabric is another material integrated into mattress covers; it works to absorb heat when the body gets too warm and releases it back if the body gets cool.
Manufacturers also may infuse materials into the foam layers of a mattress to deliver additional cooling benefits. Gel and activated charcoal are commonly used in a mattress. As a body warms up the foam layer, the gel microbeads can absorb heat to help keep the mattress cooler. Charcoal is naturally cool and can also help keep the foam layer from getting too hot.
As the name implies, edge support refers to the level of support at the edges of the mattress. Mattresses with weak edge support can make it more challenging to get in or out of bed and can cause individuals to slide forward when they sit on the edge of the bed. Conversely, a mattress with stronger edge support feels firmer along the edges, which can make sitting on the side of the bed and getting in or out easier.
Mattresses with firmer edge support are also less likely to sag. A sagging mattress isn’t ideal for any individual, but it can be especially troublesome for stomach sleepers. Mattresses with ideal edge support may offer features such as edge-to-edge coils or a high-density foam around the perimeter of the mattress. Innerspring mattresses typically have very good edge support, as do many hybrid mattresses. Generally, pillow-top mattresses do not offer good edge support because the ends of the pillow top layer are separate from the rest of the mattress.
Our Top Picks
To help with your search, here are the top mattress picks for stomach sleepers to offer all-night comfort, based on their features and performance in specific categories. The following mattresses are some of the best available to meet the support and pressure-relief needs of a stomach sleeper.
With a firm yet comfortable feel, the Helix Dawn mattress offers an ideal support for both stomach and back sleepers. It is rated an 8 to 9 on the firmness scale. Hundreds of individual coils cradle the body to offer a firm feel beneath the hips and softer feel beneath the shoulders to keep the spine in alignment. The coils also give the mattress superior edge support.
Four additional layers cover the body-shape layer. The top layer of the mattress is a Soft Touch Design cover that facilitates airflow and keeps individuals cool as they sleep. Beneath this, a latex-foam hybrid alternative contours to the body to support stomach sleepers. A transition layer of high-grade polyfoam provides support and cushioning to ensure body weight is distributed evenly into the mattress, and the base layer provides support to the entire mattress.
This mattress from Zinus offers 10 percent more iCoil pocket, heavy-gauge innersprings than their traditional mattresses for a firmer and more supportive feel for stomach sleepers. These iCoil pocket innersprings also add stability to the mattress and limit motion transfer from one side of the bed to the other. A 1-inch layer of high-density foam and a 1.25-inch layer of comfort foam sit atop the coils to allow the mattress to contour to each body shape and provide pressure relief. The foam is CertiPUR-US certified and free of chemical flame retardants, formaldehyde, and ozone depleters.
This budget-friendly mattress also features a microfiber top with a quilted jacquard cover to keep individuals cool and comfortable. Activated charcoal is infused into the mattress to absorb moisture and provide additional cooling benefits. The activated charcoal also helps reduce odors.
Stomach sleepers may want to consider the Saatva Classic innerspring hybrid mattress with the firm comfort option. The firm-feel mattress choice is an 8 on the firmness scale and offers more resistance to prevent an individual’s body from sinking into the mattress. Saatva’s patented spinal zone technology, created by the active wire layer, and a CertiPUR-US–certified high-density memory-foam layer provide additional support in the center of the mattress. This design is ideal for stomach sleepers, as it can keep their hips from falling below the rest of their body and putting the spine out of alignment.
A Euro pillow top also is integrated into the design of this mattress. The pillow top has a plush feel and allows the mattress to contour to each body and provide relief for pressure points. This pillow-top design offers greater edge support to make it easier to get in and out of bed and keep the mattress from sagging over time.
Stomach sleepers looking for a hybrid mattress that combines the best aspects of an innerspring mattress and a memory-foam mattress may want to consider the DreamCloud Luxury Hybrid Mattress. This medium-firm mattress offers contouring capabilities with enough pushback support to make it a good option for stomach sleepers. It has a 6.5 firmness rating.
There are five different layers in this hybrid mattress. Quilted foam and a cashmere cover blanket the mattress to make it soft and comfortable. Directly beneath, it has a pressure-relief comfort layer made with contouring gel memory foam. The third layer is a supportive foam designed to minimize motion transfer and provide enough support to keep individuals from sinking too deeply. Next, a layer featuring individually wrapped coils allows this mattress to provide custom support for a range of body types. Finally, the mattress offers a solid foundation made from stay-put foam to ensure all the other layers are supported and work together as they should.
This Brooklyn Bedding Plank Mattress offers two firmness options. One side has a .75-inch quilted top with continuous stitching that delivers a 10 out 10 firmness level with zero loft. The other side has a 1.5-inch quilted top with tack-and-jump stitching for a firmness level of 8 with minimal loft. Sleeping on this firm mattress allows the spine to stay in a neutral position to improve posture, reduce pressure felt by the circulatory system, improve blood flow, and reduce back pain.
The center of the mattress features a 7-inch high-density foam to provide additional stability and enhanced durability. Upgrade the top layer of the firm side for cooling benefits. The upgraded panel has a PCM fabric sewn in to provide a cooler feel when bodies come in contact with the mattress.
This hybrid mattress from AWARA is made using natural and organic materials with an organic New Zealand wool and organic cotton-covered Euro Top to keep sleepers dry and cool overnight. Beneath the pillow-top layer, a 4-inch latex layer conforms to the body and provides relief from pressure points and joint pain. This Dunlop latex, certified by the Rainforest Alliance, is naturally cooling, unlike memory foam that can retain heat. The third layer features 9-inch pocketed coils that minimize motion transfer and enhance the breathability of the mattress for added cooling capabilities.
As a contrast to many other mattress options, this organic mattress is made without the use of any ozone depleters, heavy metals, formaldehydes, chlorofluorocarbons, or toxic flame retardants. It has a medium-firm feel with a 6.5 firmness rating to keep the spine aligned.
The HELIX Dusk Luxe is a medium-feel mattress with a firmness rating of 5 to 6. The mattress offers sufficient support for a stomach sleeper while still being plush enough for back sleepers, making it a good option for stomach sleepers who have a partner who prefers to sleep on their back. The mattress features a zoned body-shape layer that keeps the spine in alignment to alleviate back pain. This layer gives the mattress a softer feel under the shoulders and a firmer feel under the hips to prevent the midsection from sinking too deep into the mattress.
A support layer of memory foam is incorporated into the design of this mattress. This layer offers relief from pressure points, which can help decrease back pain. Some other notable layers of the mattress include the breathable pillow top designed with Tencel technology to allow air to flow for a cooler night’s sleep, and the high-density Helix dynamic foam layer allows the mattress to cradle each individual for optimal comfort.
To avoid spine misalignment, heavier individuals who sleep on their stomachs need an even firmer and more supportive mattress. The WinkBed Luxury Firm Mattress is specifically designed for heavier individuals and offers this necessary support. For individuals weighing more than 300 pounds, the mattress has a 6.5 firmness feel, with a firmness feel of 8 for individuals less than 200 pounds.
The mattress features a high-density foam top, which won’t sag and adds cushioning to the mattress, making it an optimal choice. Beneath the high-density foam is a 2.5-inch support layer made from pure, open-cell latex, which offers seven different support zones to provide the right amount of support for the hips, shoulders, and other body parts. Additionally, the latex’s open-cell design allows it to pull more heat away from the body to keep individuals cooler overnight. The individually wrapped coils, which are reinforced and banded together for added support, are designed specifically to support heavier individuals.
The Bear Hybrid Mattress has a 6.1 firmness rating, making it a good option for stomach or combination sleepers who weigh 230 pounds or less. Athletes and individuals who engage in heavy physical labor will appreciate the science-based Celliant technology that uses the body’s natural energy and infrared light to deliver fast recovery times and increased energy. Clinical studies have shown Celliant to be effective at increasing oxygen levels in the body’s tissues, which can help athletes improve performance. Celliant also is effective at regulating the body’s temperature to keep individuals cool as they sleep.
This mattress features a cooling-gel foam layer and a comfort foam layer that adapt to different sleeping positions to offer a restful slumber. A responsive transition foam layer delivers relief for pressure points and offers enhanced airflow to keep the mattress from getting too hot. The mattress also has stronger coils along its perimeter for increased edge support. Additionally, this mattress features materials with both CertiPUR-US and Greenguard Gold certifications.
FAQs About Mattresses For Stomach Sleepers
If you still have a few questions about selecting the best mattress for stomach sleepers, read through the answers to some frequently asked questions below to see if you find the information you need.
Q. What mattresses are best for stomach sleepers with back pain?
Memory foam, latex, hybrid, or innerspring mattresses can all be good choices for stomach sleepers. Stomach sleepers usually look for a mattress that prevents their body from sinking too deep into the mattress and keeps their spine in alignment.
Q. Do stomach sleepers need a firm mattress?
Yes, stomach sleepers usually need a firmer mattress. A stomach sleeper’s midsection can sink into a softer mattress too far, which can put their spine out of alignment and lead to back pain.
Q. Can you sleep on a new mattress right away?
Many mattresses are ready for use right away. However, some foam or memory-foam mattresses that come in a box may take 24 to 48 hours to fully expand and be ready for use. Consult with the manufacturer’s recommendations for the mattress you select.
Q. How long does a mattress last?
The average lifespan of a mattress is typically between seven and 10 years. However, factors such as the quality and materials of the mattress, sleeping styles, and the weight of the individuals sleeping on the mattress can impact its usable life.