Stomach sleeping is the least common sleeping position— fewer than 10% of adults in the U.S. sleep on their stomachs. Compared to back and side sleepers, stomach sleepers face more health risks, including lower back pain and stiff muscles. Our comprehensive guide lists our favorite mattress recommendations for stomach sleepers, and we also discuss how stomach sleepers can lessen the health risks associated with sleeping this way.
The firm feel of Bio-Pur® and Bio-Core® foams, makes the Amerisleep AS1 mattress our top choice for the best mattress for stomach sleepers. The conforming ability of pressure-relieving foam both supports a stomach sleeper’s body and aligns the spine in a neutral position.
The Avocado mattress combines natural Dunlop latex with individually-wrapped steel coils for a firm and responsive sleep surface. The 5-zone coil support ensures stomach sleepers are properly supported.
Best Mattresses for Stomach Sleepers
|Amerisleep AS1||Features HIVE® technology for extra lumbar support.|| |
|Avocado Green||Made with all-natural, organic materials and is ideal for the eco-friendly shopper.|| |
|Bear||Contains graphite-infused memory foam to regulate your temperature.|| |
|Purple® Hybrid||Combines Purple's® innovative Smart Comfort Grid™ with pocketed coils to offer a bouncy, pressure-relieving mattress.|| |
|Nest Love & Sleep||Contains Energex™ cooling foam to keep you lifted in the mattress and prevent night sweats.|| |
|Nest Alexander Signature||Flippable firmness gives you a 2-in-1 mattress|| |
The Amerisleep AS1 is 10 inches tall and contains 2 inches of Bio-Pur® and 8 inches of Bio-Core®. The mattress cover is made with a soft, breathable cover that keeps air circulating throughout the mattress.
The open-cell, plant-based structure of Bio-Pur® is more cooling than traditional memory foam. Bio-Pur® is more breathable than traditional memory foam, a feature ideal for stomach sleepers. Those who sleep on their stomach encounter the problem of overheating, because the way the whole body is pressed up against the mattress. Stomach sleepers won’t have that problem with the Amerisleep AS1.
The Bio-Core® base of the Amerisleep AS1 is also an open-cell foam, ensuring sleepers won’t overheat at night. Bio-Core® gives durable, consistent support to the sleeper, without risk of sagging.
The firm feel of the AS1 promotes healthy spinal alignment, particularly in stomach sleepers. Because the foam responds quickly, sleepers won’t ever feel “stuck” in the mattress— the AS1 makes you feel like you’re sleeping on top of the mattress instead of in it.
Amerisleep AS1 Warranty and Sleep Trial
Amerisleep’s 20-year warranty covers sagging greater than 0.75 inches and any manufacturer defects. The warranty is divided in half:
First 10 Years: Amerisleep will repair or replace the mattress at no extra cost to the customer.
Second 10 Years: Amerisleep will replace the mattress at a 50% prorated charge. Customers will also need to cover transportation and shipping costs.
100-Night Sleep Trial
Customers can rest easy with Amerisleep’s 100-night sleep trial. While not mandatory, Amerisleep recommends customers try the AS1 for 30 days before returning it— it typically takes that long for the body to adjust to a new mattress. If the customer is not satisfied with the mattress, Amerisleep will arrange a pickup and donate it to a local charity before processing a refund.
The Avocado mattress stands at 11 inches tall. It contains 2 inches of natural Dunlop latex, 8 inches of individually-wrapped recycled steel coils, and 1 inch of natural Dunlop latex in the base. The cover is made of organic cotton and wool for a firm, yet plush sleep surface.
The responsive and highly supportive latex hybrid makes customers feel like they are on top of the bed instead of in it. The coiled support layer is a 5-zoned support system— higher-gauge coils offer softer support to heavier areas of the body, and lower-gauge coils provide firmer support to lighter areas of the body.
The Avocado mattress is an eco-friendly option— all materials are organic or recycled. For an additional fee, customers can add a 2-inch pillow top layer of Dunlop latex for extra cushioning. This mattress is ideal for stomach sleepers, average-weight and heavyweight sleepers, and those who suffer from back pain.
Avocado Warranty and Sleep Trial
Defects covered under Avocado’s warranty include sagging greater than 1 inch, any physical flaw that could cause the foam to split or crack, and any manufacturing defect in the mattress cover, including tearing or unraveling stitching.
First 10 Years: Avocado will repair or replace the mattress at no extra charge to the customer.
Second 10 Years: Starting in the 11th year, Avocado will charge a 50% prorated charge to repair or replace the mattress— this charge increases by 5% each year until the 21st year. Starting in the 21st year and until the end of the warranty, Avocado will charge a 95% prorated charge to its customers.
365-Night Sleep Trial
The sleep trial begins on the day of delivery. Customers have a year to decide if they want to keep the mattress or return it. Should a customer not be satisfied with the mattress, Avocado will arrange to have it picked up and donated before issuing a full refund. Though not mandatory, Avocado asks customers to try the mattress for at least 30 days to allow for adjustments and breaking in.
The Bear Mattress is 10 inches tall and consists of 1 inch of graphite-gel memory foam, 2 inches of responsive poly-foam, 5 inches of high-density support foam, and 2 inches of adaptive poly-foam as the base. The polyester cover incorporates FDA-determined Celliant® technology.
Made with athletes in mind, the Bear mattress is perfect for customers who lead an active lifestyle. Each foam layer is designed to help improve recovery and boost your energy in the morning. The firm and supportive foam layers also make it a great option for stomach sleepers— the foam cradles the hips, keeping the body evenly supported and the spine aligned.
The Bear mattress has a medium-firm feel. Heavyweight sleepers weighing more than 230 pounds may find the Bear mattress too soft, but for average-weight individuals weighing between 130 pounds to 230 pounds may find it perfect.
Bear Warranty and Sleep Trial
During the 10-year warranty, Bear will repair or replace the mattress with the exception of shipping and handling. Covered defects include sagging greater than 1 inch and any physical flaw causing the foam to split or crack. The cover is warrantied for 1 year, and the warranty covers tears and unraveling seams.
100-Night Sleep Trial
Bear offers customers 100 nights to try the mattress. They do require customers to keep the mattress for a 30-day break-in period before processing any returns. If a customer is not in love with the Bear mattress before the end of the sleep trial, Bear will arrange to have the mattress picked up and donated.
4. Purple® Hybrid
The Purple® Hybrid mattress is 9.5 inches tall and includes 2 inches of Hyper-Elastic Polymer™, 1 inch of poly-foam, and 7.5 inches of pocketed coils. The Lycra® blend cover creates a breathable sleep surface.
Purple’s® patented Hyper-Elastic Polymer™ is a unique gel-like substance that adjusts to the natural curves of the body. Its Smart Comfort Grid™ system has a different feel than traditional memory foam mattresses— some may like it, while others found it took some getting used to. The firm feel it gives combined with individually-wrapped coils provides an excellent sleep surface for stomach sleepers.
The Purple® Hybrid mattress stays cool because of the open-cell structure of the foam, the open grid system of the Hyper-Elastic Polymer™, and the Lycra®-blend cover. With the purchase of the Purple® Hybrid, customers have the option to choose a free White Glove Delivery service, which includes in-home setup and removal of your old mattress.
Purple® Warranty and Sleep Trial
Purple’s® warranty covers sagging greater than 1 inch and faulty workmanship that could cause cracks or splits in the foam. The mattress cover is warrantied for 2 years, and the warranty covers faults in the material.
100-Night Sleep Trial
During the 100-night sleep trial, Purple® asks customers to keep the mattress for at least 21 days to break in the mattress. If not satisfied, customers can contact Purple® and arrange to have the mattress picked up for a full refund.
5. Nest Love & Sleep
The Nest Love & Sleep mattress stands at 11 inches tall. Layers include 3 inches of Energex™ foam, 1 inch of SmartFlow Air Flow foam, and 6 inches of dense base foam. The cover is made of phase change material, transforming body heat into infrared energy.
Energex™ cooling comfort foam is a cross between latex and memory foam— it has a quick response time with pressure relief. The Nest Love & Sleep mattress may be an all-foam mattress, but it has the responsiveness of an innerspring. Customers will feel like they’re sleeping on, not in the mattress.
The Nest Love & Sleep mattress is both CertiPUR-US® and GREENGUARD Gold certified. The firm feel of the mattress makes it a great choice for stomach sleepers. It’s also a good budget option at $699 for a queen size mattress.
Nest Love & Sleep Warranty and Sleep Trial
Nest’s lifetime warranty covers the mattress as long as the original customer owns it. The warranty covers sagging greater than 1 inch, manufacturing flaws in the zipper, and any physical flaws in the cover.
100-Night Sleep Trial
Customers can enjoy a 100-night sleep trial with the purchase of any Nest mattress. Nest requires customers to hold onto the mattress for 30 days before they’ll accept any returns. If customers are not happy with the mattress, Nest will work with customers to have the mattress donated.
6. Nest Alexander Signature Hybrid
Standing at 13 inches tall, the Nest Alexander Signature Hybrid mattress contains 3 inches of TitanChill Endurance® foam, 1 inch of SmartFlow foam, and 8 inches of individually-wrapped coils. The mattress is encased in a quilted, phase change material fabric.
This mattress is available in three different firmness options— plush, medium, and luxury firm— but for stomach sleepers, we chose to review the luxury firm. The TitanChill Endurance® layer pulls heat away from the body using a copper infusion in the foam.
SmartFlow foam has a convoluted structure, encouraging airflow inside the mattress for additional cooling. The pocketed coil support layer offers good edge support, so sleepers won’t roll off the bed.
The Nest Alexander Signature Hybrid mattress provides a supportive surface while relieving pressure points. The luxury firm option cradles the hips to improve spinal alignment. The mattress has excellent motion isolation and sleeps silently, so restless sleepers won’t have to worry about disruptions while tossing and turning.
Nest Warranty and Sleep Trial
Nest’s lifetime warranty lasts as long as the original customer owns the mattress. Nest covers sagging greater than 1 inch, any manufacturing flaw in the cover’s zipper, and any physical flaw in the mattress cover.
100-Night Sleep Trial
Customers receive 100 nights to try out the mattress in the comfort of their own home. Nest requires customers to keep the mattress for 30 days to allow the body to adjust to the new mattress. After, and if the customer is not happy with the mattress, Nest will arrange to pick it up and donate it to a local charity, before issuing a full refund.
What Is a Stomach Sleeper?
Stomach sleeping is the least common sleep position. It’s also one of the unhealthiest. Stomach sleeping causes undue stress and tension in the neck. If the spine is misaligned from the hips sinking too deeply, sleepers may experience lower back pain. If you’re a stomach sleeper, your best mattress will offer good back support and feel medium to medium-firm.
Other Sleeping Positions
Side sleeping is the most common sleep position— it’s also considered one of the healthiest. Side sleeping opens the airways and reduces the risk of snoring and developing sleep apnea. Sleeping on the right side is best since it removes pressure off of vital organs and lessens acid reflux.
It’s easier to align the spine when sleeping on the back; however, back sleepers may face an increased risk of snoring and developing sleep apnea. Snoring occurs when the soft tissue at the back of the throat collapses, obstructing airways.
Pros and Cons of Stomach Sleeping
As previously stated, stomach sleeping is the least healthy sleep position. There is only one benefit to stomach sleeping: better oxygen intake. The health risks associated with stomach sleeping far outweigh the pros.
Stomach-sleepers receive one benefit from sleeping on their stomachs— less risk of snoring and sleep apnea development. Lying on the stomach prevents the collapse of soft tissue.
When sleeping on the stomach, sleepers usually twist their necks off to the side to breathe. The unnatural angle puts a large amount of pressure on the spine, and holding that pressure for hours at a time can cause sleepers to wake with aches and pains.
We hold a large amount of weight in our midsections. When lying on our stomachs, gravity pulls that weight down, straightening the natural “S” curve of the spine. Lower back pain and aching hips may result come morning.
Stomach sleepers are also known as restless sleepers. They toss and turn all night, searching for that comfortable position. They also wake periodically during the night without even realizing it. These continuous sleep disruptions lead to daytime drowsiness and lack of focus.
The Right Mattress for Stomach Sleeping
Stomach sleepers need a mattress that keeps them in a neutral position. The biggest concern for stomach sleepers is the midsection — a large amount of bodyweight is centered in this area and pulls down the spine during sleep. A mattress with good support can keep the spine in neutral alignment for a healthier sleep.
Depending on the type of mattress, the materials and the layer order will be different. Stomach sleepers should look for even, consistent support no matter the mattress type they choose. Also, since stomach sleepers are so close to the mattress, choosing a bed with hypoallergenic properties helps improve breathing.
Most memory foam mattresses have a memory foam comfort layer with a high-density poly-foam base. How each layer is organized varies across brands. These types of beds contour to the body and relieve pressure. Memory foam mattresses offer the best motion isolation, so you don’t have to worry about waking up if your partner moves around a lot.
Different types of latex can determine mattress price and level of support. Latex can be natural or synthetic— synthetic is factory-made and less expensive.
Natural latex is more durable and therefore, more expensive. There are two different types of natural latex: Dunlop and Talalay. Dunlop is denser and more durable, while Talalay is softer and more breathable. Like memory foam, latex conforms to the body but it’s more responsive.
An innerspring mattress is constructed of steel coils and a thin comfort layer of foam. Better air circulation inside the mattress, thanks to the open structure of steel coils, offers exceptional cooling to sleepers. Innersprings are also known for their good edge support, preventing sleepers from feeling like they’re rolling off the bed.
A hybrid mattress contains a coiled base and a memory foam or latex comfort layer— it must contain coiled support and a foam or latex layer 2 inches or more to be considered a true hybrid mattress. Hybrids are designed to offer sleepers the best of both worlds— the conforming pressure relief of memory foam and the cooling properties of an innerspring.
“Firmness” refers to the feel of a mattress. A stomach sleeper should look for a mattress with a medium to firm feel, depending on the sleeper’s body weight. This type of mattress will keep the body on top, with minimal sinking— a key way of keeping the spine in alignment for a stomach sleeper. The firmness level will also depend on the body type of the sleeper. For example, a firm mattress will be too hard for a lightweight sleeper, since their weight won’t allow the body to sink into the mattress for cushioning— instead, they should turn to a medium to medium-firm mattress for better contouring and pressure relief.
Avoid softer beds, because it will allow the hips to sink too far, throwing off spinal alignment. Also, avoid beds that are too firm, because it can cause increased pressure in the midsection. To prevent misalignment, stomach sleepers need a sleep surface to keep the hips in line with the shoulders.
A durable mattress will hold up after years of regular use— a good quality mattress typically lasts 7-10 years. A mattress made out of cheap, low-quality materials will begin to break down within a year or two of purchase. Sagging will appear in the center of the mattress, where the majority of a person’s body weight is at night.
The average price for a good mattress is over $1000, depending on the type of mattress— hybrids and latex mattresses are more expensive, while memory foam and innerspring mattresses come at a lower cost. Before finalizing a purchase, factor in shipping costs. Some mattress companies ship the mattress for free, while others may add on an extra charge.
Sleep Trials, Warranties, and Return Policies
Sleep trials, warranties, and return policies are excellent benefits to customers who choose a bed in a box mattress. These perks help customers try out a mattress, ensuring that they like it before committing to buy. Return policies are a good substitute if a sleep trial isn’t offered. Warranties protect the mattress against manufacturer defects and can help save customers money.
Many manufacturers allow customers a trial period, usually between 90 to 120 days, to try out a mattress within the comfort of their own home. It takes about 30 days for the body to adjust to a new mattress. If the customer is not satisfied with the mattress, companies will donate or recycle the used mattress.
A warranty is the period of time a company stands behind their product, warranting against certain defects or issues. Covered defects include:
- Flaws in the workmanship
- Flaws in the mattress cover
- Cracks or splits in the foam
A 10-year warranty is a standard for a new mattress. Always read through the warranty before buying a mattress— know what to expect from the company, and what the company expects of you.
A return policy coincides with the sleep trial, if there is one available. If not, the customer needs to pay attention to the return policy or a customer satisfaction guarantee. A return policy usually lasts about 30 days— usually the time it takes to break in a new mattress. If the customer is not happy with the mattress, they can arrange to have it picked up and either donated or recycled.
Tips For Sleeping on Your Stomach
While stomach sleepers face health risks, these risks can be reduced by using a good pillow and mattress. Sleeping on a low loft, or thinner pillow can help, as well as placing a thin pillow under the hips to align the spine.
Type of Pillow
Stomach sleepers may not even need a pillow. Should they choose to sleep with a pillow, make sure the loft is low— too high of a loft pushes the neck at an even more awkward angle and throws the alignment off.
A low-loft pillow is a great choice for stomach sleepers. “Loft” refers to a pillow’s height. Stomach sleepers should look for a pillow with a loft of 3 inches or less. This type of pillow cradles the head and neck, keeping the spine in alignment.
High-loft pillows elevate the neck too high, throwing the spine out of alignment. Pay attention to pillow descriptions and customer reviews to confirm pillow loft before buying.
Placing a thin, or low-loft pillow under the hips reduces pressure in the midsection, aligns the spine, and prevents lower back pain.
Stomach sleepers can also benefit by sleeping without a pillow. It may seem odd at first, but sleeping without a pillow can help align the spine and put less strain on the neck.
To help reduce tension and pressure in the spine from stomach sleeping, stretch lightly before bed to warm up and loosen the muscles. Stretch first thing in the morning too, to relieve built-up stiffness and tension.
Frequently Asked Questions
What’s a good sleep position?
Side sleeping is the healthiest sleeping position. It opens airways, prevents snoring, and may even reduce sleep apnea symptoms. Sleeping on the right side, in particular, can reduce acid reflux and improve heart health.
How can I get in the habit of sleeping in another sleep position?
A handy trick to switching sleep positions is filling a pillowcase with tennis balls and placing it either in front of you or behind you as you lay on your side. During sleep, if your body tries to lean forward or back, the tennis ball-filled pillowcase will force the body to stay on its side.
To write a high-quality and credible article, we considered over 22 leading mattress brands, read several dozen reviews and articles, and spent over 34 hours researching, writing, and editing.
While stomach sleeping isn’t the healthiest sleep position, it can be the only position many sleepers find comfortable. Taking extra steps like using a low-loft pillow and stretching before bed can reduce aches and pains. After reading about our favorite mattresses for stomach sleepers and reviewing the pros and cons to stomach sleeping, it’s time to go out there and buy that mattress.