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The 5 Best Pillows for Side Sleepers of 2022

Side sleeping has been proven to have more advantages than any other sleeping position. One advantage is that side sleeping keeps your airway open, so your tongue doesn't fall back into your throat, obstructing your airway. This minimizes snoring and can also benefit people suffering from acid reflux and sleep apnea. Side sleeping is also great for your body as it aligns the spine. This reduces discomfort in the hips and shoulders where pressure points develop.

It is essential to have the best pillow for side sleeping, as not all pillows are the same. The mattress, as well, should provide adequate cushioning and support to promote balanced spinal alignment if you are a side sleeper. The best pillow for a side sleeper is a pillow that keeps their head and neck in alignment. A too-high pillow will hyperextend their head, while a thin option won't give enough support. A proper pillow for side sleepers is thicker than standard pillows and provides enough cushioning to support your head and neck. When it comes to pillows, personal preference does play a big part, but after research, here are the best pillows for side sleepers of 2022.

Leesa Pillow - Standard Size
Leesa Premium Foam
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Birch Organic Pillow
The Birch by Helix Organic
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Original Casper Sleep Pillow
Original Casper Pillow
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Layla Kapok Pillow
Layla Pillow
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Saatva Latex Pillow
Saatva Latex Pillow
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best presidents day sales on pillows leesa premium foam pillow

Leesa Premium Foam

The Leesa Premium Foam pillow is 5-inch-thick memory foam and provides adequate support for a side sleeper. The cover is machine washable and is cashmere-soft, so very comfortable to sleep on for a good night's rest. While the pillow is not a cooling pillow, the foam does offer ventilation channels.

This pillow strikes a beautiful balance between being comfortable and offering proper support for a good night's rest. The memory foam retains its shape, and reviewers said there was no need to reposition yourself in the middle of the night. Leesa's generous sleep policy means customers have a 30-day trial period. If you decide to return your pillow, the company will provide a free shipping label.

Leesa Pillow - Standard Size
Leesa Premium Foam
best down pillow alternatives birch by helix organic

The Birch by Helix Organic

The Organic Pillow from Birch is all about creating comfort with natural materials. The cover is made out of 100% GOTS certified organic cotton. This stretchy organic cotton fabric gives the pillow the ability to comfortably conform to the shape of your head, neck, and shoulders nicely. The internal fill of the Organic Pillow from Birch is made with a blend of organic birch wool and natural latex. The Talalay Latex core is shredded to create a light yet supportive center to this pillow and to keep the pillow from deflating.

This Talalay Latex Core is wrapped in high-quality organic wool with several certifications to give you peace of mind that it is ethically sourced. Having this wool layer provides plush contouring feel to the pillow, making for a great night's sleep.

Birch Organic Pillow
The Birch by Helix Organic
A white Casper pillow.

Original Casper Pillow

Suppose you frequently shift between your side and stomach while you sleep. In that case, the Casper Sleep Pillow features a unique pillow-in-pillow design that supports all sleep positions.It has a supportive inner pillow and a soft and fluffy outer pillow to keep you comfy and align your neck. The Original Casper Pillow is also breathable as its cover is made with 100% cotton and a percale weave. It provides additional support to the side sleeper with a 2-inch gusset that supports the neck by keeping the microfiber fill evenly distributed. Another bonus is the Casper design of this pillow makes removing and machine washing the outer layer easy.

Original Casper Sleep Pillow
Original Casper Pillow
Man smiling while hugging a Layla Kapok pillow and lying down on a Layla mattress.

Layla Pillow

The Layla Pillow is a medium loft that measures 4 inches thick. This is ideal for side sleepers because it provides excellent cushioning and support without deflating, which causes pain to the shoulders.The Layla Pillow consists of shredded memory foam infused with copper and fibers from the kapok tree. Copper is a unique mineral that provides antimicrobial properties and prevents the pillow from retaining too much body heat. The kapok fibers give the pillow a plush, soft feel, and the the memory foam conforms to the head and neck.

The Layla Pillow is also a great option as a comfortable bolster between the knees for side sleepers. The pillow is backed by a 120-night sleep trial and free shipping in the U.S.

Layla Kapok Pillow
Layla Pillow
The Saatva classic mattress on a black bed frame.

Saatva Latex Pillow

The Saatva Latex Pillow is another excellent option for side sleepers because of its adjustable design.

It can be adjusted from low to medium to high lift, which suits all personal preferences. The pillow's shell is composed of organic cotton that contains plush microdenier fibers to mimic the feel of natural down. This cover and micro-denier fibers are fully machine-washable as a bonus. The core is filled with shredded Talalay latex that contours the neck and shoulder without sinking. If buying from the manufacturer, your purchase comes with a 45-night sleep trial and a one-year warranty.

Saatva Latex Pillow
Saatva Latex Pillow

Frequently Asked Questions

What kind of pillow should a side sleeper use?

Side sleepers need a pillow that adequately cushions the head and neck to promote spinal alignment. Pillows that are too thick or too thin will interfere with spinal alignment and cause neck and shoulder pain. Memory foam is generally an excellent fill for side sleepers. It offers pressure relief and the right amount of support for your neck.

What is the best pillow for side sleepers with neck and shoulder pain?

Neck and shoulder pain is widespread among side sleepers because the head and neck are misaligned with the spine with this way of sleeping. Contoured pillows are the best options for side sleepers because they cradle the head while releasing tension from the neck and shoulders. They are unique and can take some getting used to it but are very beneficial for side sleepers.

How do you pick a side sleeper pillow?

It would be best to consider several factors, including material, shape, and firmness, in determining the best pillow. Remember to think about what is most important to you, and we encourage you to try a few options out.

Many people will choose memory foam because they are firm and maintain their shape well with regards to material. Others go for a fluffier option, such as a down or polyester-stuffed pillow. Just make sure if you choose this option, it has a high enough loft to provide support.

With shape, look for a pillow that adequately supports your neck and accommodates your shoulders properly when you sleep on your side. The best pillows for side sleepers are a bit boxy rather than round. This is why many people will choose a memory foam pillow, as these are usually firmer. They can also be available either as a single cut piece or filled with shredded foam for equal distribution between the neck and shoulders. Single-piece foam pillows sometimes have cut-outs to accommodate and support the shoulders and neck.

The best pillow fills that provide adequate firmness are latex and memory foam. If you wish for a softer pillow, choose a firmer core and soft outer cover.

Side sleepers need to have a substantial pillow when it comes to a good night's rest. Having a firmer pillow keeps your neck correctly aligned with your shoulders. While everyone will have their personal preference, we encourage side sleepers to try out different pillows to find ones that best suit their needs.

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