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People who sleep on their sides often have difficulty finding a mattress that effectively cushions all their pressure points. This is exactly when a good mattress topper for side sleepers can help by turning an overly firm mattress into a fluffy cloud with just the right amount of support. Plus, investing in a mattress topper is a far more affordable way to improve your sleep than the cost of a new mattress.

In order to make smart, informed choices, you need to think about the spots where you press into the mattress while sleeping so that you can picture the pressure points that require extra padding. If you are a side sleeper, you will benefit most from a topper that can alleviate the pressure on the areas closest to the mattress - your shoulders and hips. This is why the right thickness is the biggest factor for finding an ideal topper for side sleepers. If it’s too thick, body heat can build up, which can make you feel uncomfortable. If it’s too thin, it cannot offer the level of cushioning or support that you need.

What’s more, your topper also needs to provide the necessary support for the rest of your body so that your spine can maintain its proper alignment. Typically side sleepers need a soft to medium level of firmness to maintain a balance of structural support and body-conforming.

There are quite a few mattress toppers designed for side sleepers on the market, but we want to ensure that you know which ones might be a good investment. So, we’ve put together a list of the best mattress toppers for side sleepers, along with a brief buyer’s guide to make it easier for you to make the right choice.

The Best Mattress Topper for Side Sleepers

  • LUCIDthe best bamboo infused mattress topper for side sleepers
  • Linenspathe best cooling mattress topper for side sleepers
  • Red Nomadthe best soft mattress topper for side sleepers
  • SleepJoythe best value mattress topper for side sleepers
  • ExceptionalSheetsthe best hypoallergenic mattress topper for side sleepers
  • LUCID 5-Zone Lavenderthe best memory foam topper for side sleepers
  • Perfect Cloudbest medium-soft mattress topper for side sleepers
  • Best Price Mattressthe most supportive mattress topper for side sleepers

The Best Mattress Toppers for Side Sleepers Comparison Table



Key Features


LUCID Best Mattress Topper for Side Sleepers review by

- Infused bamboo regulates temperature, moisture, and odor
- Naturally hypoallergenic
- Plush memory foam relieves pain from pressure points


Linenspa Best Mattress Topper for Side Sleepers review by

- Provides cool and breathable comfort
- Plush, luxurious feel while being very supportive
- CertiPur-US certified


Red Nomad Best Mattress Topper for Side Sleepers review by

- Made of visco-elastic memory foam for a softer feel
- Sleeps cooler than other toppers of equal thickness
- Designed to work best with fitted sheets

SleepJoy Best Mattress Topper for Side Sleepers review by

- Lower carbon footprint than standard memory foam
- Highly durable 
ViscO2 memory foam
- Improved airflow due to ventilated memory foam design

ExceptionalSheets Best Mattress Topper for Side Sleepers review by

- Hypoallergenic and machine washable
- The stretchy fitted skirt keeps it in place
- Ultra-soft surface fabric made of bamboo

LUCID Lavender Best Mattress Topper for Side Sleepers review by

- Relieves pressure at different points of the body
- Lavender infused memory foam provides a relaxing scent
- Textured to increase breathability


Perfect Cloud Best Mattress Topper for Side Sleepers review by

- Cooling gel technology prevents overheating
- Provides pressure point and pain relief
- CertiPur-US certified + 10-year warranty

Best Price Mattress Best Mattress Topper for Side Sleepers review by

- Will not disrupt your sleep partner
- 2 layered memory form improves support
- CertiPUR-US certified + 5-year warranty

​​​​The Best Mattress Toppers for Side Sleepers Reviews

LUCID: The Best Bamboo Infused Mattress Topper for Side Sleepers

LUCID has come out with a collection of different mattress toppers. This particular one is made of extra-thick 3” memory foam, offering exceptional support and comfort for side sleepers. It relieves pressure points while supporting the lower back and keeping the spine aligned.

Being naturally hypoallergenic, Lucid infused their memory foam with Bamboo charcoal made by burning the plant at extremely high temperatures. This charcoal naturally resists bacteria growth and odors, while helping to control heat and moisture and keeping you comfortable so that you don’t wake up all hot and sweaty.

LUCID is CertiPUR-US certified as eco-friendly with less odor than most other mattress toppers. Extra ventilation is provided through tiny holes for much better airflow than products made of high-density foam. If you tend to get hot and sweaty in bed at night, this topper will regulate your temperature, body odor, and overall comfort. It will have a new foam scent when you first open the package, but this will dissipate within 48 hours. This LUCID mattress topper also comes with a 3-year warranty.

However, before you buy, consider how firm your mattress is. If your mattress is firm, this topper will give you the cushioning you need to be truly comfortable in bed. But if you put this LUCID topper on a super soft mattress, you may have difficulty rolling over or even getting up out of bed, which may exacerbate your pain points.

Linenspa: The Best Cooling Option

Linenspa’s Gel Swirl is infused with a cooling gel to regulate the bed’s temperature, so you get a cooler night’s sleep than you would on a regular memory foam topper. Actually, this topper has another feature that helps you stay cool while sleeping - the memory foam is “open cell,” which means it’s well ventilated to assist airflow. In fact, some users even claimed this topper made them too cool in bed. However, the vast majority of users said the Linenspa Gel Swirl was one of the best mattress toppers for side sleepers they’d ever tried.

You can get this topper in 3 different thicknesses, 2”, 3” and 4” so that you can find the perfect combination of comfort and support for your particular weight. Each of these profiles is equally plush, but the thicker your topper is, the more closely it will conform to your body as compared to a thinner topper. Heavier people tend to prefer a thicker profile. However, even at 4” thick, these toppers offer enough support for you to turn over quite easily. The incredibly soft memory foam conforms to your body to align your spine while dispersing your body weight evenly to relieve pain and pressure points during sleep. The Linenspa Gel Swirl also works well for couples because it absorbs movement.

The CertiPUR-US certification means that the memory foam in this mattress topper is high quality, contains no toxic chemicals, and meets the most stringent safety standards. This topper is somewhat heavier than most, weighing 17 lbs., can easily be spot cleaned, and has a 3-year guarantee. The product comes compressed and rolled up, so Linenspa suggests that you let it sit for a full 24 hours before putting it on your mattress. You need to give it time to expand fully and for any odors to dissipate.

Red Nomad: The Best Soft Mattress Topper for Side Sleepers

While every mattress topper we’ve reviewed works well for side sleepers, everyone still has their own preferences when it comes to the softness of your mattress. Red Nomad’s topper is 4” thick plus it’s made with visco-elastic memory foam for a softer feel that also gives gentle support. This topper reduces pressure points to relieve the chronic neck and/or backaches of side sleepers.

If your mattress is just too firm (or maybe sagging) and you’re looking for something to make it more comfortable, while still offering support, the Red Nomad mattress topper may be your answer. It can transform your overly firm mattress, into one that’s soft and comfortable.

This mattress topper will also keep you cool due to an enhanced Cool Cycle Polymer design, which keeps cool air in and heat out. Red Nomad foam is CertiPUR-US certified, which means it’s eco-friendly and meets safety requirements for volatile organic compounds (VOC) and low emissions. It’s also made in the USA.

When the topper arrives, it will be double boxed, compressed, and rolled. The manufacturer suggests letting it expand and air out for a full 24 hours before placing it on your mattress. Since it is so thick, it’s made a little smaller than the size mattress it fits so that you can easily put a fitted sheet over it. This mattress topper is heavier than most, slightly over 26 lbs., so you may need someone to help you place it on your mattress due to its weight.

SleepJoy: The Best Value Mattress Topper for Side Sleepers

If you are concerned about the environment and always look for products made partly from natural materials, you’ll love Sleep Joy’s ViscO2 Ventilated Memory Foam Mattress Topper. The memory foam is made in the USA and has CertiPUR-US certification for meeting stringent standards for durability, content, and emissions. The foam itself contains plant-based materials from castor beans in order to leave a lower carbon footprint than that of standard memory foam.

This product made our 2019 list of the Best Mattress Toppers for Side Sleepers because not only is it eco-friendly, but it’s also a full 3” thick. You would not necessarily think this would make such a huge difference in relieving pressure points and back pain, but it most definitely does! And, it works even better when it’s placed on top of the right mattress.

Furthermore, this topper is highly ventilated, so it won’t retain any body heat. The open-cell foam design allows air to freely flow throughout the foam surface so you can sleep all night comfortably long. ViscO2 memory foam is extremely durable - you can expect it to hold its shape for many years of use. ViscO2 memory foam is also odor-neutral, which means you don’t have to air it out for 24-48 hours before using. You can take it right out of the package and use it that very night.

If you want one of the best mattress toppers for side sleepers, one that doesn’t smell, will hold its shape for years to come and would make your bed a lot more comfortable, then give this one a try. Sleep Joy stands behind this topper by offering a 2-year limited warranty.

ExceptionalSheets: The Best Hypoallergenic Option

This hypoallergenic mattress topper is made with an ultra-soft sleeping surface for added comfort. You can toss it in the washing machine and dryer, which makes it easy to keep clean. Because it has a uniquely designed stretchy fitted skirt, it can fit snugly on mattresses up to 18” thick. So, you don’t have to worry about it slipping and sliding around while you’re trying to sleep.

The plush rayon cover is made of bamboo fabric, and the filling is down-alternative cluster fiber, which is what makes this mattress topper hypoallergenic. Those of us with allergies know they can keep us up at night if we don’t have the right bedding. These mattress toppers feel just like duck or goose down, but you don’t have the feathers poking out or the allergic reactions. The plush soft feel on your skin is enough to lull you to sleep.

What makes this among the best mattress toppers for side sleepers is that it can fit perfectly any type of mattress, whether it’s an innerspring, memory foam, or latex. The fabric cover is a full 160 thread count and stitched with a double-needle baffle box design to keep the filling from shifting around.

The bamboo rayon fabric top can deflect heat away from you far more effectively than a standard polyester mattress pad cover. This topper will not smell when you first unpack it, so you can use it right away. Just put it over your mattress like a fitted sheet. It provides slide sleepers with a top-quality, soft, cozy, breathable mattress topper that can be machine washed or spot cleaned. ExceptionalSheets proudly makes these toppers in the USA.

LUCID 5-Zone Lavender: The Best Memory Foam Topper for Side Sleepers

The LUCID 5-Zone Lavender memory foam topper is designed with 5 different textured body zones to properly align the spine while preventing breathing obstructions. It relieves the pressure points that most commonly occur with side sleeping (shoulders, hips, knees, and feet) while keeping you from tossing and turning. Two inches of contouring memory foam helps distribute your weight and keep you from injuring yourself from improper sleeping.

The materials in LUCID 5-Zone toppers are all CertiPur-US certified as eco-friendly, having been tested to prove they are low in toxic chemicals and odors. The memory foam in this mattress topper is formulated to be exceptionally soft, responsive, and airy.

We named LUCID 5-Zone as one of the best mattress toppers for side sleepers due to its lavender scent, which we love. Lavender is known for its ability to relax the mind, so it creates a naturally serene atmosphere for sleeping. This herb is often used for relaxation and as a sleep aid, so with lavender built right into the topper, it can only enhance your sleep.

Another great feature of LUCID 5-Zone is that it is breathable, so you won’t get hot and sweaty during the night. While it is not infused with cooling gel, the top is textured, which creates more airflow than you would have with dense memory foam. This mattress topper comes with a 3-year warranty. When you first open the package, you will smell a slight odor that should dissipate within 48 hours if you let it air out before placing it on your mattress.

Perfect Cloud: Best Medium-Soft Option

The Perfect Cloud is a medium soft mattress topper made with memory foam and cooling gel (Gelcare technology). This enables it to redistribute body heat to keep you cooler during the night. With 2 inches of medium density memory foam, this mattress topper conforms nicely to your joints while providing support to your torso and spine. Perfect Cloud integrates perfectly with your mattress and provides the right combination of firmness and comfort for side sleepers.

The memory foam used in this mattress topper has undergone a battery of tests that prove it relieves nervous tension resulting from head, neck, shoulder, and back pain. This allows you to sleep more soundly and wake up refreshed. The Perfect Cloud topper works well for couples since it minimizes motion transfer and provides adequate support for those who sleep on their backs as well. So, if one of you is a side sleeper and your partner is a back sleeper, this makes for a perfect mattress topper for both of you.

Another wonderful feature of this product is that it’s CertiPUR-US certified, so it’s eco-friendly and contains no formaldehyde, PVC, certain phthalates, and chemical flame retardants, and it’s low on volatile organic compounds (VOC), which means better indoor quality.

To keep it in place on top of the mattress, the bottom side is made with anti-skid material. The topper is covered with a durable, top-quality stretchy fabric, strong enough to be easily spot cleaned. Another reason why the Perfect Cloud is one of the best mattress toppers for side sleepers is that it is not only incredibly comfortable but also comes with an amazing 10-year warranty.

Best Price Mattress: The Mot Supportive Mattress Topper for Side Sleepers

The Best Price mattress topper is a total of 4” thick of high-density memory foam. On the bottom, there is a 2½” layer of high-density foam for support; on the top, there is a 1½” layer of memory foam for improved comfort. The top layer of memory foam conforms to the curves of your body, eliminating the common pressure points that affect side sleepers.

This is a great mattress topper for couples because it redistributes motion, which means there is less disruption when your partner moves. It has a soft removable zippered polyester mesh cover that can be unzipped and removed. The top layer of foam will help you relax for a good night’s sleep since it is infused with Green Tea Extract.

Furthermore, the Best Price Mattress is certified by CertiPUR-US as eco-friendly, so there will be no toxic emissions or off-gassing odors. It is recommended that you let this topper unfurl on its own so that you won’t end up tearing the surface foam. It can take 24 hours for it to fully inflate once you’ve removed it from the shipping box. This mattress topper also has a 5-year warranty.

One thing we were not happy to discover is that there’s no way to secure the topper to the mattress. The other toppers we’ve reviewed have a non-skid bottom or corner straps to hold the topper in place. However, the good news is that this topper is quite heavy, so it won’t move around much. Two layers of foam support the joints of side sleepers quite well and relieve aches and pains much better than sleeping on a bare mattress. This happens to be one of the thickest mattress toppers on our list of the Best Mattress Toppers for Side Sleepers, and it is amazingly comfortable.

Why Slide Sleepers Need A Particular Mattress Topper

Sleeping on your side is not the healthiest of sleep positions. Side sleepers often suffer from muscle tension or pain and poor spinal alignment - all of these problems can result from sleeping on the wrong type of surface. When you sleep on your side, your shoulders, hips, and knees will protrude more than other body parts, causing them to feel the pressure. This is why side sleepers could benefit from special toppers.

A mattress topper provides an extra layer of cushioning on top of the mattress. It can change the feel of your existing mattress by making it softer, firmer, thicker, more supportive and conforming, etc., depending on which type it is. 

You need a topper that will cradle these protruding body parts so that they can sink in comfortably and not tense up. A mattress topper for side sleepers also needs to provide the necessary support so that your spine can maintain its proper alignment. 

Materials For Mattress Toppers For Side Sleepers

There are so many different kinds of mattress toppers available on the market that it’s almost impossible to determine which one would be best for you. First, you have to choose between latex, memory foam, wool, and feathers. What’s the answer?

They are all designed to improve the feel of a standard mattress, but for side sleepers, we recommend that you use a mattress topper made of either memory foam or latex. Why? Toppers made of memory foam or latex are better than those made of other materials because they provide both comfort and the necessary support.

Let’s look at some comparisons:


Wool mattress toppers are soft, comfy, and cozy, and since wool comes from a natural source, these toppers keep you cool in hot summers and warm during cold winters. Although these toppers are quite durable, they are also too soft to offer side sleepers sufficient support and pressure points relief. Also, they can give off a mild odor of sheep, which can be bothersome. But even if you wanted one, wool mattress toppers are pretty expensive and not easy to find. 

Down or Goose Feathers 

Featherbeds provide plenty of comfort and breathability, but what about support? It’s just not there. This will cause your shoulders and hips to bottom out, resulting in poor spine alignment, which can lead to back problems. Plus, down and goose feathers are quite fragile, so although these toppers tend to be more expensive, they won’t last all that long. Feathers also flatten out, so you’ll have to take your topper off the bed on a regular basis just to fluff it up. And don’t forget that the shafts poke out and prick your skin, which is not pleasant. Featherbeds also make a lot of noise because the shafts rub against one another. 


A mattress topper filled with a polyester blend can offer the softness of feathers without all the other issues. They also tend to be quite affordable and don’t have an unpleasant smell. The problem is that a polyester blend doesn’t really provide much support for side sleepers - over time the filling will flatten out and lump up, as the polyester fibers settle to one end. 

Memory Foam 

Toppers made with memory foam have long been considered the best, especially for side sleepers. The main reason is due to the support they provide by conforming to the shoulders and hips. It’s also a viscoelastic material that responds differently to body heat and pressure by first softening up so that you can sink into it and then molding to the contours of your body. 

This results in a good amount of support around your neck, shoulders, and hips. Memory foam cradles your body so that you can sleep in a natural healthy position to preserve your body alignment. It also reduces the pressure and stress impacting these body parts. 

You should remember, though, that density levels vary in memory foam as well as the thickness, so those variations will affect how much support the topper provides. Low-density memory foam toppers are not going to offer much support for your lower back. However, high-density toppers may be too stiff and firm for an average-sized person. 

Memory foam toppers are still considered among the best mattress toppers for side sleepers because they isolate motion extremely well. If you sleep with a partner who tosses and turns during the night, you aren’t likely to feel much of it on a memory foam topper. Memory foam toppers also last a long time and come in many variations and price points. 

Are there any drawbacks?

Standard memory foam tends to retain heat. If you like a nice warm bed, this won’t be a problem. But if you are like a lot of people who prefer a cooler sleep, you will need to find a way to achieve this. You can sleep in a well-ventilated room or put breathable sheets on your bed. Additionally, because of concerns about heat retention, innovative new memory foams have been developed for use in both mattresses and toppers, as follows: 

Plant-based memory foam: The memory foam used in these toppers is made with plant products, usually bamboo, coconut, or soy. The reason these eco-friendly pads have become so popular is that they are also more breathable and emit very little odor. 

Gel-infused memory foams: Tiny beads of cooling gel are infused into the memory foam during the production process to keep it from retaining heat. There may be hardly any scientific evidence to back up their claims of heat dissipation, but mattress experts and reviewers definitely affirm that gel-infused memory foam mattresses and toppers do provide a cooler surface to sleep on than standard memory foam. 


Latex is a great option for side sleepers on the lookout for a resilient, yet highly durable mattress topper. The major difference between latex and memory foam comes down to the ingredients used to produce them. Memory foam has historically been made of technologically advanced polyurethane, along with other types of petroleum products, whereas latex is naturally derived from milky white tree sap. 

While memory foam is praised for the pain relief and comfort it provides, the fact that toxic chemicals are used in its production has dampened its popularity. This is why latex is preferred by consumers who understand the benefits of a natural, healthier option for their toppers and one of the reasons we consider natural latex toppers to be among the best mattress toppers for side sleepers. 

In addition to its eco-friendly construction, latex is blessed with several other great features that you might find impressive. For example, while latex does not offer the floating, cloud-like sensation that many memory foam users describe, it does provide a more solid, yet springy feel that many people love. The instant response of latex provides constant support with every turn, which is exactly what people with chronic neck and back pain need. 

However, you need to know that latex mattress toppers vary in firmness depending on the method used in their production. The Dunlop method produces a firmer latex than the Talalay method. What about heat retention? Just like with memory foam, latex manufacturers have had to deal with this problem as well. Most have now developed ventilation technologies that have proved helpful in the quest for cooler sleep.

You might also like to know that mattresses and toppers made of 100% natural latex are quite difficult to find and quite expensive due to the grueling extraction process. To combat these issues, two new types of latex have been developed: 

Synthetic latex: This is a man-made product consisting of all synthetic ingredients.

Blended latex: This type of latex is made with both natural and synthetic ingredients. 

Unlike latex that has been entirely derived from the natural milky white sap of trees, these two newly developed types of latex are made of chemicals that are likely to have a strong odor once you take off the wrapper. 

Who Would Benefit From A Mattress Topper For Side Sleepers

We can’t think of anyone who wouldn’t benefit from using a high-quality mattress topper for side sleepers! But there are certain medical conditions or issues that could be improved or even eliminated by use of this simple luxury:  

Old Mattress

Has your mattress seen better days? If so, you might want to shop for a good mattress topper. We are not saying that a topper would restore your mattress like new, but it will make it a lot more comfortable to sleep on. This can extend the life of your mattress another year or two before you’re forced to buy a new one.

Herniated Discs

The right mattress topper can really benefit people suffering from herniated discs by relieving lower back pain. Once you have back surgery, your doctor will require that you sleep on your side or stomach. A good mattress topper for side sleepers would support either sleeping position. 

Elderly People

When you get up in years, your skin will become thinner, and you may start losing weight. This can make you very uncomfortable in bed. You might feel the springs poking you all over, and you’ll toss and turn the entire night trying to find comfort. If you suffer from arthritis, it only gets worse. A good quality mattress topper for side sleepers could make all the difference in the world. This would provide you with the much-needed support for the proper body alignment and ensure that you wake up in the morning without the stiffness and soreness that you’ve been suffering from.  

Bed Sores

Some people with serious medical conditions cannot get out of bed or even move around. Under these conditions, they can easily develop bedsores (pressure ulcers). Bedsores occur due to constant pressure being placed on one part of the body, typically on the bony areas like the heels, ankles, or tail bone. A gel-infused or foam mattress topper can relieve the pressure, preventing bed ulcers from forming and offer some relief for those that are already there.

Heavier People

People who are on the heavier side can also benefit from using a mattress topper for side sleepers. Many times, these people have trouble getting to sleep due to mattress springs. If you’re being poked on your sides or back, you can’t get comfortable. A nice thick mattress topper placed on top of your mattress will cushion you so that you don’t feel those pressure points. This would allow you to finally get a good night’s sleep without having to go out and buy a brand-new mattress. 

Hip Pain

If you suffer from chronic hip pain, you’re likely struggling every night trying to get comfortable in bed. If you are tossing and turning all night long, there is no way you’re feeling refreshed in the morning. Instead, you probably feel as if you’ve been hit by a truck! A high-quality mattress topper for side sleepers could solve your problem. They conform to your body’s curves so that you’re properly cradled with your hips in the right position to relieve pressure points. With the right topper, you shouldn’t need an extra pillow to position your legs comfortably. 

Things To Look For When Selecting A Mattress Topper

There are literally thousands of mattress toppers on the market for you to choose from. But if you are a side sleeper, you should be looking for one that provides the proper support. By this, we mean that it should keep your spine properly aligned. Otherwise, you could sink down too much, causing your spine to curve unnaturally. This would inevitably lead to aches and pains, as well as other issues. 

Other than offering the right level of support, your topper should also cradle your pressure points to relieve pain and discomfort. When sleeping on your side, certain parts of your body will protrude. Your topper should gently conform to and cradle those areas, so they can sink in rather than be pressed against a firm surface. 

In our opinion, the best mattress toppers for side sleepers are medium soft and thick enough so you can sink into them while still being supportive. Overall, it should make your mattress more comfortable to sleep on. A thin, flimsy topper won’t do you much if any good.  

Let’s look at these features in more detail:


Mattress toppers usually range in thickness from 2” to 4,” and some believe that 2” toppers are ideal as long as they add the softness to an already supportive mattress. However, we would not suggest that a 250 lb. side sleeper choose a 2” topper as their shoulders and hips would sink right through. Also, this thickness will add little if any support to a regular mattress if it lacks some.

In our opinion, the best mattress topper for side sleepers is 3” thick because it provides proper support without excess plushness. And it would not be so firm that your joints would ache when you get up in the morning. However, if you weigh 250 lbs. you would want to consider a mattress topper 4” thick. 


It goes without saying that your mattress topper must fit perfectly on top of your mattress. They come in all sizes: Twin, Full, Full XL, Queen, King, and California King. Before shopping, verify the exact size of your bed. When you have a topper that’s too large, it’s difficult to put a fitted bed sheet over it. If it’s too small, it minimizes your usable sleeping surface, which can be uncomfortable for couples. 


Toppers come in all levels of firmness, but we believe that the best mattress toppers for side sleepers are of medium firmness. Why? This level of firmness perfectly cradles your shoulders and hips as it molds to the natural contours of your body. It’s important that your body is properly aligned when you sleep so that you can breathe easily, wake up refreshed, and free of any aches and pains. 

With a medium-firm topper, you can minimize the pressure on your joints. If you’re a side sleeper, who wakes up every morning with aches and pains in your shoulders, hips, and back it may be because your mattress doesn’t contour to the shape of your body or it could just be too firm. Also, if the topper is as soft as wool, you may sink down into the surface and end up bent out of shape, which can lead to aches and pains for the next day. 


Density refers to mass per unit volume. With regard to mattress toppers, it describes how soft or firm they feel. For example, a mattress topper made with a 3-lb. density memory foam has about 3 lbs. of memory foam in a cubic foot block.

Mattress toppers come in 3 different levels of density, from 2 lbs. to 6 lbs.:

High density: These are 6 lbs. per cubic foot and are perfect for people who are heavier or those who have a mattress that is overly soft. 

Medium-firm density: These would be from 5½ lbs. to 6 lbs. and this level of density combined with a topper 3” thick make for the best mattress toppers for side sleepers. You have enough material for your shoulders and hips to sink into while getting enough support as well. Unlike a 2” thick topper with low density, a 3” thick topper with medium-firm density is difficult to bottom out. For a light- to medium-weight sleeper, they have just the right firmness, whereas a high-density mattress topper would be too stiff. 

Medium density: These range from 4 lbs. to 5½ lbs. This level of density is considered the most versatile because it works well for a variety of sleeping needs and positions. 

Low density: These range from 2 lbs. to 3 lbs. This level of firmness is usually found in 2” and sometimes 3” thick toppers. Low-density toppers do not provide sufficient support. Rather, this level is recommendable, if you want is to add a little softness to a mattress that is a tad bit firm.


Mattress toppers made of memory foam or Talalay latex may give off a slight odor when you first open the package. It is usually harmless and should dissipate within a couple of days. Latex toppers made with the Dunlop method have almost no chemical smell. 

NOTE: High-density memory foam mattress toppers contain more polymers and thus likely exhibit a stronger smell. These smells, if they are too strong, can irritate the eyes and nose, cause headaches, nausea, coughing, and other chest issues. You need to make sure the mattress topper you buy is safe to use. Look for certifications listed on labels regarding testing standards. The strictest certifications are from CertiPur-US, GOLS, and Oeko-tex. You want a low level of volatile organic compounds (VOCs), which these certifications ensure.  


Mattress toppers typically last anywhere from 1 to 5 years, maybe more if you’re lucky. It’s a matter of getting a good quality topper at a fair price. Your topper will last longer if you use it properly and avoid any staining. It’s important that you follow the proper cleaning instructions. If you cannot toss it in the washing machine and dryer, make sure that it can be spot cleaned.

Heat Retention

People seem to complain about heat retention more than any other thing about their mattress and/or mattress topper. The two most culpable materials are memory foam and latex. Since they are designed to contour to the curves of your body, they trap your body heat due to little airflow. So, the heat builds up, making you hot and sweaty and causing you to toss and turn. The good news is that most bedding manufacturers have developed ways to minimize this issue. For example, certain memory foam mattresses and toppers are now being infused with cooling gel beads or are being made with plant-based materials that help dissipate heat. The best mattress toppers for side sleepers even have tiny ventilation holes that promote airflow. 


Memory foam is not waterproof, nor is it machine washable. If you tossed your memory foam topper in the washing machine, it would be totally damaged and unusable. So, you would have to settle with spot cleaning if necessary. Just make sure you use a dry cloth afterward to soak up all the moisture. You could also cover your memory foam topper with a waterproof cover. This would keep it from becoming stained or wet by accident. Parents with small children usually know these tricks. Over the waterproof cover, you could have another machine-washable cover so that you always have a clean surface under your bottom bed sheet. 


Once you find a mattress topper that suits you best, you want it to last for years to come. For that, you’re going to want to be able to keep it clean. Look for one with a removable, machine-washable cover with long-lasting durability. 


Prices are all over the map when it comes to mattress toppers. This guide only mentions brands with price points ranging from $100 to $200, and most mattress toppers are priced within this range. Most of the time, consumers get what they pay for, but when it comes to bedding, this adage doesn’t always hold true. Price doesn’t always indicate quality. What you need to consider is your comfort along with your spinal health. Getting a good night’s sleep is priceless, so this should be your top priority. 

Trial Period

Some companies give customers a trial period, which is typically 30 days. This way, you have a chance to try the topper out before making a decision. If you are given this option, you should definitely take advantage of it. There is nothing like the first-hand experience with a product to learn whether it’s right for you or not, especially on a big purchase. 


While shopping, you’ll notice that some toppers have a warranty period, while others do not. It seems like the pricier an item is, the better its warranty. But not always. It goes without saying that you should look for a mattress topper with a warranty. This gives you that added protection in case there is a manufacturing flaw or some other problem. You can be more relaxed about buying the topper, which may give you that extra push. 


How should I properly take care of and keep my mattress topper clean?

For starters, you should rotate it every few weeks to keep it from forming a permanent indentation around your shape. This will keep it solid so that it can provide the support you need. You should also air your topper out frequently, as well. Some products are machine washable and dryable, so you can just do just that to keep it clean. Otherwise, we would suggest getting one with a nice soft, machine-washable cover that you can easily remove. 

Would a bamboo mattress topper work well for a side sleeper?

Yes. Bamboo toppers are among the best mattress toppers for side sleepers. Bamboo resists both sagging and mildew. It’s also silky, smooth, and soft, which makes for a luxurious sleep surface. 

Are they suitable for people who weigh 250+ pounds?

Yes, many do. However, you need a high-density memory foam or latex topper that is more than 2” thick. It certainly would be worth a try.

Does a mattress topper for side sleepers relieve shoulder, hip, and back pain?

Yes, it can actually relieve pain in these areas. Many people say that once they got the right mattress topper, their pain disappeared. When your spine is properly aligned, especially for side sleepers, you take the pressure off so healing can begin. The best mattress toppers for side sleepers do exactly that!

Can sleeping on my side cause pelvic rotation?

Side sleepers tend to over-rotate their upper body and legs, dropping one knee so that it no longer lines up with their other leg. Although this isn’t as serious as it sounds, it should be handled as it could cause spinal cord issues and back pain. If this is what you’re doing, place a pillow between your legs to keep them aligned together. 

My bed gets so hot at night. Can a topper fix this problem?

Your mattress could be contributing to this. You should try a resilient latex mattress topper because it will keep you off the surface of your mattress to keep you cooler. 

Does the mattress topper go on top of or underneath the mattress protector?

Try it both ways to see which one makes you most comfortable. Some people like placing the protector on top of their topper just to keep it clean. But the only way you’re going to know which way works best for you is to try it both ways. 

My existing mattress is sunken in the middle, would it help to get a mattress topper?

No. Your mattress is too far gone. All the topper will do is add some cushioning, not fill the hole. 

Why do side sleepers need a specific type of mattress topper?

People sleep in their own preferred position, whether it’s on their stomach, side, or back, and each position has certain needs. Side sleepers are more likely to suffer from pressure point pain, muscle tension from poor body alignment, and even injuries. When you sleep on your side, you have more body curves that need proper position. If you don’t have the right support, your spine can easily become misaligned, and your neck stuck at an odd angle. If you use the wrong mattress topper for your side sleeping position, you can even become injured from unsupported body parts. This is why side sleepers need a specific mattress topper. 


For people who sleep on their sides, a nice soft bed that hugs your body while taking the pressure off their shoulders and hips is crucial to getting a good night’s sleep. If your existing mattress does not need to be replaced, the right mattress topper will provide the surface you need for maximum comfort and support. 

There is no single best mattress topper for side sleepers because everyone is different. For some people, heat retention is their main concern because they get too hot during the night. Other sleepers have environmental allergies, so they need a hypoallergenic mattress topper that won’t trigger a reaction and one that can be easily cleaned. For consumers who want eco-friendly products, there are a number of different manufacturing specifications that may fit their needs. And, your own size and weight will often determine which level of density and thickness would suit you best in a mattress topper. 

Once you’ve spelled out your priorities, our recommendations should help you decide about the best way to make your bed more comfortable. 

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