Mattresses have come a long way in the last several decades, boasting custom surfaces that cater specifically to the personal preferences of a wide range of people. Nowadays, we even have "smart beds" that allow you to alter features like temperature, firmness, height and angle.
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"A bed is meant to support a sleeper from the shoulders down, and depending on how you sleep, different mattresses may work better or worse for you," says Peter Polos, MD, PhD, sleep medicine specialist and expert for Sleep Number. For example, he says, "Softer mattresses help with pressure relief, and more firm mattresses tend to help the sleeper with back pain."
People who sleep on their stomach have a very specific set of requirements to look for in a mattress, specifically when it comes to firmness and pillow support.
In fact, Dr. Polos recommends stomach sleepers seek out a mattress with extra firmness and a thin pillow that supports your head and neck so you don't wake up in pain.
Because getting a good night's sleep is so important to ensure overall health, stomach sleepers should know what features to look for and which mattress might be best for their preferred sleeping position.
With the help of a few experts, we've narrowed your search to the top six mattresses for stomach sleepers on the market now.
The Best Mattresses for Stomach Sleepers
- Best Overall: The Winkbed ($849 to $1,899, WinkBeds)
- Best on a Budget: The Nectar Memory Foam Mattress ($399 to $1,138, NectarSleep)
- Best Spring Mattress: Saatva Classic Mattress ($812 to $2,146, Saatva)
- Best for Plus-Sized Sleepers: DreamCloud Luxury Hybrid Mattress ($599 to $1,299, DreamCloudSleep)
- Best Cooling: The Helix Dawn ($699 to $1,399, HelixSleep)
- Best Smart Mattress: Sleep Number 360 i8 Smart Bed ($1,649 to $3,099, SleepNumber)
How We Chose
We reached out to various sleep specialists to better understand the specific mattress needs that can benefit stomach sleepers, as well as tips for how to find the perfect fit. We chose our top picks based on the following criteria:
- Level of firmness
- High-tech capabilities
1. Best Overall: The Winkbed
Stomach sleepers can benefit from a firm mattress that offers deep support, as well as temperature controls so you don't get overheated while you're lying on your belly.
This mattress offers supreme firmness thanks to its zoned coil system that targets the midsection. It also has above-average cooling features, including a material that helps disperse heat to keep you at a comfortable temperature.
Choose the Firm feel if you're average-sized, and opt for the Plus model if you weigh more than about 250 pounds.
Buy it: WinkBeds.com; Price: $849 to $1,899
2. Best on a Budget: The Nectar Memory Foam Mattress
The Nectar Mattress is a great mattress for stomach sleepers on a budget due to its affordable price.
"Its memory foam helps people who deal with sharp pressure points by conforming to the body without excessive sinking," says Sunjya Schweig, MD, a sleep expert and founder and president of the California Center for Functional Medicine.
Despite its affordable price range (a twin starts at just $399), this mattress holds up through the years and, if for any reason you're unhappy with it after you've made your purchase, you can return it up to a year later for a full refund.
Buy it: NectarSleep.com; Price: $399 to $1,138
3. Best Spring Mattress: Saatva Classic Mattress
Nicole M. Avena, PhD, assistant professor of neuroscience at Mount Sinai School of Medicine and visiting professor of health psychology at Princeton University, appreciates the thickness of this luxury mattress, which helps fully support a stomach sleeper's position all night long (choose the Firm or Luxury Firm comfort levels).
"It is a spring mattress that is accompanied by a memory foam quilted top, making it perfect for back support and prevention of aches and pains," she says.
It's also ideal for hot sleepers who have a tendency to overheat through the night, as its organic cotton cover and dual coil design helps ensure proper airflow so you're never feeling too hot in a single spot.
Buy it: Saatva.com; Price: $812 to $2,146
4. Best for Plus-Sized Sleepers: DreamCloud Luxury Hybrid Mattress
Dr. Schweig likes to recommend this mattress to stomach sleepers over 230 pounds. It's made from a mix of memory foam and innerspring coils that provides the firmness stomach sleepers need while still maintaining cushion and comfort.
Each of the five layers offers something unique to the sleeper — the first layer is a quilted foam and cashmere top that's ultra soft, the second is pressure-relieving gel memory foam that contours to the sleeper's shape, the third offers that sinking-in feeling while still providing support, the fourth is the essential base layer to keep everything above performing optimally and the fifth and final layer is made of individually-wrapped coils that adapt to your body.
Buy it: DreamCloudSleep.com; Price: $599 to $1,299
5. Best Cooling: The Helix Dawn
This hybrid mattress offers extra firmness and support, making it an excellent choice for stomach sleepers. The firmness and body-contouring abilities of its top layers help to promote neutral spinal alignment, which is ideal for those prone to back pain, notes Jordan Duncan, DC, a chiropractor at Silverdale Sport & Spine in Silverdale, Washington.
Another great feature is its premium cooling covers. Depending on your temperature preferences or tendencies, you can choose between Helix's breathable Soft Touch cover or upgrade to the GlacioTex Cooling Cover, both which offer a cooling technology that actually directs heat away from your body while you sleep.
Buy it: HelixSleep.com; Price: $699 to $1,399
6. Best Smart Mattress: Sleep Number 360 i8 Smart Bed
If you're looking for a mattress with all the bells and whistles that will work well for your stomach-sleeping preferences, you can't go wrong with the Sleep Number 360 i8 Smart Bed, which is especially beneficial for those with a sleeping partner. It senses each sleeper's movements throughout the night and automatically adjusts to keep you (and your partner) comfortable.
It features pressure-relieving layers and Smart 3D fabric that's significantly more breathable, which allows your body to stay at an ideal temperature and enhances your quality of sleep through the night.
"The i8 also absorbs excess heat and releases it as you cool, so you and your partner can sleep just right, without having to 'try on' different types of mattresses," Dr. Polos adds.
Buy it: SleepNumber.com; Price: $1,649 to $3,099
What to Look for in a Mattress for Stomach Sleepers
If you're a stomach sleeper, here are a few features to look out for when shopping for the right mattress to help you get a good night's sleep.
Firmness is perhaps the most important feature to look for when shopping for a mattress that's ideal for a stomach sleeper.
"While soft, cushy mattresses are popular choices for many people, they may not be the best option for people who sleep on their stomach," Duncan warns.
The right level of firmness will help keep a stomach sleeper's spine in alignment, ensuring they don't wake up with aches and pains.
When choosing between various types of mattresses, Dr. Schweig, recommends stomach sleepers opt for gel or foam, as these tend to respond better to a sleeper's weight and can alleviate some of the pressure on the joints and muscles from stomach sleeping.
He also emphasizes the importance of a mattress that has a high-density core. "A high-density support core helps to stabilize the mattress, which prevents sagging around the sleeper's midsection, improving spinal alignment.
Size matters when it comes to purchasing a mattress, especially if you're a stomach sleeper.
"Stomach sleepers often like their own space, so a mattress that can comfortably accommodate two people is essential," says Dr. Avena.
She recommends looking for a queen-sized mattress at least 8 inches thick and topped with memory foam (if it isn't a fully foam mattress). "This will ensure you have enough space to stretch out as well as support your back and neck," she adds.
Choose the Right Pillow, Too
The right mattress but the wrong pillow can prevent a stomach sleeper from getting a good night's sleep.
According to Dr. Polos, a pillow should provide optimal support to a sleeper from the shoulders up. He recommends seeking out a pillow that is relatively thin and marketed specifically to stomach sleepers, such as the Blissbury Stomach Sleeping Pillow ($39.99, Amazon).
- Peter Polos, MD, PhD, a sleep medicine specialist and expert for Sleep Number
- Sunjya Schweig, MD, a sleep expert and founder and president of the California Center for Functional Medicine.
- Nicole M. Avena, PhD, assistant professor of neuroscience at Mount Sinai School of Medicine and visiting professor of health psychology at Princeton University