The 9 Best Pillows for Side Sleepers

Stop stiffness with one of these pillows.

If your preferred sleep position is on your side, you are in the majority of adult sleepers. A 2019 review published in BMJ Open found that 60 percent of adults reported that they preferred to sleep on their side (1).

“For adults, side sleeping is generally preferred because it tends to put the airway in the most favorable position,” says Chris Winter, MD, neurologist, sleep specialist, and author of The Rested Child and The Sleep Solution. “This creates less breathing obstructions (sleep apnea) and snoring, which every bed partner likes! For some people with sleep apnea, their condition can be treated simply by changing their body position.”

There are tons of benefits that side sleeping provides your body. It’s been studied to reduce your risk of snoring (2), sleep apnea (2), heartburn (3), and back pain (4).

So what do side sleepers need in a pillow? According to the Sleep Foundation (5, 6), side sleepers need a pillow that falls on the thicker side, which helps to provide cushioning and fills in the space void between the head and neck that naturally occurs when side sleeping. Think: fabrics like latex and memory foam. This helps keep your neck and spine in proper alignment, and prevents additional pressure from falling on your neck. The addition of a pillow between your legs can also help side sleepers greatly by keeping your knees aligned while also reducing pressure. And this translates to less low back strain.

If you’re in the market for pillows to help side sleepers get better sleep, we’ve rounded up nine of the best pillows for side sleepers below.

Related: If You Wake Up Sweating, Try Cooling Sheets

The Best Pillows for Side Sleepers