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Are you a side sleeper looking for a comfortable mattress topper?
You’ve come to the right place.
Side sleepers need a soft sleeping surface that prevents pressure points, particularly on their shoulders and hips. In addition to pressure-point relief, a soft mattress ensures proper spinal alignment and prevents back pain.
If your mattress feels too firm, a mattress topper can help. It’s a much cheaper option compared to buying a new softer mattress.
What’s In This Buying Guide?
In this buying guide, we recommend the 10 best mattress toppers for side sleepers. Most of our top picks are memory foam toppers. Memory foam is the best topper material for pressure relief.
We also give you some tips on how to choose the best mattress topper if you are a side sleeper.
For other types of mattress toppers, read our reviews of the best mattress toppers for different kinds of sleepers.
What Do Side Sleepers Need in a Mattress Topper?
Pressure relief. That’s what side sleepers need most in a mattress topper.
The biggest problem for side sleepers is an overly firm mattress. The mattress pushes against their shoulder, ribs, and hip. This causes two issues.
One, pressure points develop under these areas, causing pain and soreness. Two, the spine becomes misaligned, often resulting in back pain.
Side sleepers need extra cushioning to prevent pressure points and keep the entire body in proper alignment. A soft mattress topper will hug your pressure points, allowing them to sink a bit deeper into the mattress and stay aligned with the rest of the body.
But be careful not to go too far with the softness. A mattress topper that makes your mattress too soft will cause some parts of your body, particularly your midsection, to sink too deep. This lack of support bends your spine out of shape (causing back pain) and also puts pressure on certain joints like the hips.
Refer to our buying guide further below (after the reviews) for tips on how to choose the right mattress firmness depending on your body weight and how firm your current mattress is.
The 10 best mattress toppers for Side Sleepers
- Editor’s Choice: ViscoSoft Memory Foam Mattress Topper
- Hypoallergenic: Malouf ISOLUS 2.5 Inch Ventilated Gel Memory Foam Mattress Topper
- For Back Pain: COONP Queen Mattress Topper
- Cooling and comfort: Molecule AirTEC Topper – Most Advanced Airflow, Comfort, Support
- Budget: eLuxurySupply Rayon from Bamboo Extra Thick Mattress Topper with Fitted Skirt
- Luxury: Birch Plush Organic Mattress Topper
- Cooling Memory Foam: LUCID 4 Inch Gel Memory Foam Mattress Topper
- Gel Memory Foam: Linenspa 3 Inch Gel Swirl Memory Foam Topper
- Latex: Pure Green 100% Natural Latex Mattress Topper
- For year-round comfort: Sleep & Beyond Organic Merino Wool Topper
|ViscoSoft||Editor’s choice||4”||Gel memory foam and down alternative||Removable and washable Cotton cover||5 years|
|Malouf||Best hypoallergenic||2.5”||Ventilated gel memory foam||Removable and washable bamboo rayon cover||3 years|
|Coonp||Best for back pain||-||Down alternative||400TC cotton cover||Not specified|
|Molecule||Best cooling and comfort||3”||Foam||Removable and washable cooling cover||5 years|
|eLuxurySupply||Best budget||-||Fiberfill||Bamboo rayon cover||Not specified|
|Birch||Best luxury||3”||Talalay latex||Organic cotton cover with organic wool batting||10 years|
|LUCID||Best cooling memory foam||4”||Gel ventilated memory foam||No cover||3 years|
|Linenspa||Best gel memory foam||3”||Gel open cell memory foam||No cover||3 years|
|Pure Green||Best latex||1”/2”/3”||Natural latex foam||No cover||5 years|
|Sleep & Beyond||Best for year-round comfort||-||Organic merino wool||Organic cotton cover||Not specified|
1. Editor’s Choice: ViscoSoft Memory Foam Mattress Topper
The ViscoSoft mattress topper combines to plush materials to provide higher than average pressure relief. The topper consists of a 2.5” memory foam layer with a 1.5” down alternative pad on top.
With a total thickness of 4”, the ViscoSoft topper provides a deep enough hug even for heavier sleepers.
- The dual-layered design provides excellent pressure-point relief.
- Gel memory foam keeps topper relatively cool.
- Ideal for heavier sleepers.
- Good price.
- 60-day trial period.
- Some off-gassing when new.
Most mattress toppers consist of just a single layer of foam. The ViscoSoft topper has two layers with a total thickness of 4 inches. It’s almost like a mini-mattress.
The main layer is 2.5” of gel memory foam. On top of it is a 1.5” plush down alternative pad that is attached to the memory foam base using corner straps.
The two layers provide just the right balance of soft and firm that side sleepers need. The microfiber pad allows you to sink comfortably into the topper while the firmer memory foam core ensures you don’t sink too much.
If you have existing shoulder or hip pain, the ViscoSoft topper cushions you to keep the pain from worsening.
We also recommend the topper for heavier folks weighing over 230lbs. Thanks to the extra-thick 4” profile, the ViscoSoft topper will not bottom out on you.
You might be concerned about sleeping. Memory foam is known for its heat retention. But the ViscoSoft topper sleeps surprisingly cool, for most people at least.
The microfiber layer on top separates you from the heat-retaining memory foam. So the topper doesn’t get very hot.
The cooling gel in the memory foam also helps. It absorbs body heat, cooling you down further.
Another reason the ViscoSoft topper feels cool is the breathable cotton cover, which also does a great job wicking away sweat.
The ViscoSoft topper comes with a deep skirt that stretches to secure the topper under the mattress and keep it from shifting.
It takes a couple of days for the topper to expand to full thickness, but you can sleep on it after a few hours. Expect a mild ‘new car’ smell when you first unbox the topper. It’ll go away after a few days.
When you buy the ViscoSoft topper, you’ll get 60 days to try it at home. If you don’t like it, you can return it for a full refund. If you keep it, ViscoSoft guarantees it with a 5-year warranty.
The ViscoSoft Memory Foam Topper is Good For:
- Side sleepers looking for an affordable but comfortable memory foam topper.
- Side sleepers looking for a topper to soften their spring, foam, or latex mattress.
- Heavier side sleepers looking for a plush but supportive mattress topper.
2. Best Hypoallergenic: Malouf ISOLUS 2.5 Inch Ventilated Gel Memory Foam Mattress Topper
If most mattresses leave you with a stuffy nose or itching skin, we recommend the Malouf ISOLUS gel memory foam topper.
The ISOLUS topper comes with a bamboo fabric cover that is naturally hypoallergenic.
- Hypoallergenic cover.
- Protects your bed from allergens.
- Sleeps cool for most people.
- Great pressure-point relief for side sleepers while maintaining support.
- A mild smell when new.
- Not ideal for hot sleepers.
The Malouf ISOLUS topper uses bamboo rayon in the cover. Bamboo rayon fabric has three big advantages.
One, it has a super soft texture, so it feels great against your skin. Two, it has excellent breathability and moisture-wicking ability – great news for hot sleepers and people with night sweats.
Three, bamboo rayon is hypoallergenic. If you have allergies or skin sensitivity, the ISOLUS topper will help you sleep more comfortably.
The ISOLUS topper also acts as a mattress protector, keeping allergens like mold, dust mites, and pet dander from settling on your bed. The cover is removable and washable, so it’s easy to keep it clean and allergen-free.
Underneath the cover is 2.5” of ventilated gel memory foam. It has an open-cell (ventilated) construction that improves airflow and reduces heat retention. It’s also infused with a cooling gel that absorbs body heat.
The gel and the ventilated design, combined with the breathable bamboo cover, keep the ISOLUS topper cool for most sleepers; emphasis on ‘most.’
If you are very sensitive to heat or your body generates more heat than average, you may still find the ISOLUS topper to be uncomfortably warm, especially during the hot months. It is memory foam, after all.
If you sleep hot, we recommend the Molecule AirTEC topper or the Pure Green latex topper. See both topper reviews further below.
Another issue with the ISOLUS topper is off-gassing. You’ll experience a mild smell when it’s new. Some people find it unpleasant. It’ll go away in a few days.
The Malouf ISOLUS Topper is Good For:
- People with allergies or skin sensitivity.
- Anyone looking for comfortable memory foam topper to soften a firm mattress.
- Sleepers looking for a mattress topper that’s easy to keep clean (washable cover).
3. Best for Back Pain: COONP Mattress Topper
Whether your back pain is the result of sleeping on an uncomfortable mattress or a health condition, a supportive mattress topper can help.
The COONP down alternative mattress topper carefully balances between pressure relief and support. It’s soft enough to contour around your pressure points but not too soft that it causes spinal misalignment.
- Doesn’t compromise mattress support.
- Sleeps cooler than memory foam.
- Fits mattresses up to 21” thick.
- Machine washable.
- Cheaper than memory foam and latex toppers.
- Not ideal for those looking for a thick topper they can sink into.
- Not ideal for hot sleepers and hot climates.
- It is not recommended for sleepers weighing over 230lbs.
A mattress topper can be too soft even for side sleepers. This reduces support and can cause or worsen back pain. If you want to soften your mattress while maintaining adequate support, we recommend the COONP mattress topper.
It’s more like a mattress pad. However, the terms mattress pad and topper are sometimes used interchangeably, so either term is right.
Instead of plush memory foam, the COONP pad contains a down-alternative fill. While it does have a plush feel, the COONP topper doesn’t sink as much as memory foam.
This allows you to enjoy the pressure-point relief of the mattress pad while also getting the support you need from your firm mattress. This keeps your spine properly aligned and reduces or eliminates back pain.
That said, we do not recommend the COONP mattress topper for heavier folks weighing over 230lbs. Because the topper is thinner than a conventional memory foam topper, you’ll still feel the firm mattress underneath. Go with a 3”-4” memory foam or latex topper instead.
We also don’t recommend the COONP topper for hot sleepers or people in hot climates like Florida. While the 400TC cotton cover is very breathable, the microfiber filling can feel hot and stuffy.
Setting up the COONP topper on the mattress is easy. The manufacturer recommends leaving it for a few hours to allow it to expand. You can also fluff it up in a dryer. Once it’s ready to use, place it on your mattress and tuck the elastic pocket underneath the mattress to keep the topper from shifting. The skirt fits under mattresses between 8” and 21” thick.
Another good thing about the COONP topper is that it is washable, so keeping it clean is no problem. Just note that you’ll need a commercial size washing machine.
The COONP Mattress Topper is Good For:
- Side sleepers with back pain.
- Side sleepers who want more pressure relief without making the mattress too soft.
- People who don’t like memory foam but want its plushness.
4. Best Cooling and Comfort: Molecule AirTEC Topper
The Molecule AirTEC mattress topper is one of the most comfortable mattress toppers available in the market. It’s also one of the coolest, making it a good choice for side sleepers who sleep hot or live in a warm climate.
- Sleeps cool.
- Excellent pressure relief and support.
- CertiPUR-US certified foams.
- Perfect for heavier side sleepers.
- Side sleepers weighing under 130lbs may find it too firm.
One reason the Molecule AirTEC topper is one of the most comfortable you’ll find is its 3-layer construction. It’s designed like a full-size mattress. The three layers work together to provide just the right amount of pressure relief and support.
The AirTEC topper doesn’t feel as squishy as most memory foam toppers targeted at side sleepers. It cushions your shoulder and hip but without making the bed overly soft that your spine bends.
This makes the Molecule topper a great choice for average weight and heavier folks. With three inches of thickness, heavier sleepers won’t bottom out.
However, we do not recommend the AirTEC topper for light side sleepers weighing under 130lbs. The topper may feel too firm and will not provide adequate pressure-point relief.
But if you sleep on your back or stomach, the AirTEC topper is perfectly fine.
You are probably wondering what the term AirTEC means. It is the name of the exclusive foam used in the core of the topper and refers to the foam’s excellent breathability.
As we mentioned, the AirTEC topper has three layers. The top layer is made with MolecularFlo foam. It’s more durable, more responsive, and more breathable than ordinary memory foam.
The middle layer is where the AirTEC foam is. The foam has an open-cell design that greatly improves ventilation, helping keep the topper cool.
The base layer is made with RecoveryFlo foam. It is firm to provide support and ensure durability. It is also zoned, which allows the topper to better adapt to your body shape and sleeping position.
Another notable part of the Molecule topper is the cooling cover. It’s made with special fibers that quickly dissipate heat away from the topper.
All this comfort and Cooling doesn’t come cheap. The Molecule AirTEC is one of the most expensive foam toppers in the market.
But we think it is worth it, and many customer agree.
The Molecule AirTEC Topper is Good for:
- Hot side sleepers looking for a foam mattress topper that sleeps cool.
- Folks with a larger budget.
- Heavier side sleepers looking for a comfortable topper with adequate support.
5. Best Budget: eLuxurySupply Bamboo Mattress Topper
If you are on a budget, we recommend this bamboo rayon mattress topper from eLuxurySupply. It is a fiberfill topper, so it’s not as plush as a memory foam topper.
But if your mattress feels a tad too firm, it’ll soften it enough to prevent back pain and sore joints.
- Good bargain.
- Soft yet supportive.
- Sleeps cool.
- Not ideal for those looking for a lofty or extra-plush topper.
The eLuxurySupply mattress topper combines a Revoloft fiberfill with a bamboo rayon cover to upgrade the feel and comfort of your mattress. It does two things.
One, it softens your mattress to improve pressure-point relief. It’s not as plush as memory foam, so it doesn’t turn your bed into a mushy swamp. You’ll still enjoy adequate support from your mattress.
Secondly, it makes your bed cooler. Fiber is not the coolest material around, but it does not trap as much heat as memory foam. But it is the bamboo rayon cover that makes the biggest difference in your sleeping temperature. Bamboo fabrics are naturally cool and highly breathable.
The eLuxurySupply topper is a good choice for sleepers with allergies or skin sensitivity. Both the synthetic microfiber fill and the bamboo rayon cover are hypoallergenic.
The eLuxurySupply topper comes with an elastic pocket that fits mattresses up to 18” deep. As for maintenance, the entire topper is machine washable.
The eLuxurySupply Bamboo Mattress Topper is Good For:
- Hot sleepers.
- Sleepers looking for a soft but supportive mattress topper.
- Side sleepers who don’t like the feel of memory foam.
6. Best Luxury: Birch Living Plush Organic Mattress Topper
Want to add a luxurious touch to your mattress? We recommend the Birch Living organic mattress topper.
The three-inch topper uses plush organic wool, natural latex, and organic cotton to provide something close to a five-star hotel sleeping experience.
- Super luxurious.
- Organic materials.
- Sleeps cool.
- Helps with night sweats.
- Expensive, as expected.
The latex has a soft feel, making it comfortable for side sleepers. The plush wool padding adds to the softness and enhances pressure point relief.
The combination of latex, wool, and cotton cover keeps the topper cool and comfortable. Latex doesn’t trap heat; the cotton cover has excellent breathability, and wool is great at temperature regulation.
The wool padding and cotton cover are also great for sleepers with night sweats. The two materials are good at wicking moisture.
The Birch Living topper is 3” thick, making it ideal even for heavier folks.
Of course, all this luxury doesn’t come cheap. If you are looking for a budget mattress topper, you won’t like the price tag on the Birch Living topper.
The Birch Living Organic Mattress Topper is Good For:
- Sleepers looking for a luxury mattress topper and don’t mind spending more than average.
- Anyone looking for an organic latex topper.
- Hot sleepers and those with night sweats.
7. Best Cooling Memory Foam: LUCID 4 Inch Gel Memory Foam Mattress Topper
If you love the plushness of memory foam but are concerned about sleeping hot, we recommend the Lucid 4” memory foam mattress topper.
The Lucid topper uses cooling gel and a ventilated foam design to keep you cool.
- Sleeps cool.
- The thick profile makes it ideal for heavier sleepers.
- Plush comfort.
- Ideal for extra-firm mattresses.
- The slight smell when new.
- No cover.
If your body turns into a heater when you get in bed, a memory foam topper is not a good idea. Latex or wool topper is the best choice for you. A down-filled topper is also good.
But if you love the feel of memory foam, we recommend the Lucid 4” topper. Four inches of plush memory foam should make you hot and sweaty, but the Lucid topper sleeps cool.
The secret is the addition of cooling gel to the foam and unique foam design.
The gel absorbs heat away from your body, helping you feel cool. But on its own, cooling gel is not enough. Once it absorbs a certain amount of heat, it no longer cools you down.
That’s why the Lucid topper also includes a ventilated foam design. The memory foam is perforated to allow air and thus heat to flow away from the mattress.
The Lucid topper does not include a cover. We highly recommend getting a waterproof and washable cover to protect the topper.
Another downside of the Lucid memory foam topper is the initial off-gassing. Expect a mild ‘new car’ smell when it’s new. The smell goes away in a few days.
The Lucid 4” memory foam topper comes with a 3-year warranty.
The Lucid 4” Memory Foam Topper Is Good For:
- Side sleepers looking for a thick and plush mattress topper.
- Hot side sleepers looking for a memory foam topper that stays cool.
- Side sleepers weighing over 230lbs.
8. Best Gel Memory Foam: Linenspa 3 Inch Gel Swirl Memory Foam Topper
Gel memory foam sleeps cooler and has better body contouring compared to ordinary memory foam. The Linenspa memory foam topper uses a swirl design to enhance the performance of the gel.
- Sleeps cool for most people.
- Excellent pressure-point relief.
- Plush comfort – ideal for a firm and extra-firm mattresses.
- Low price.
- Some off-gassing when new.
- No cover.
It’s not just the gel in the memory foam that keeps the Linenspa topper cool; the open cell foam design also helps by improving breathability.
While some extra-hot sleepers may still find the Linenspa topper to be too warm, most customers slept cool.
To make it even cooler, use breathable sheets or a bamboo/cotton cover on it.
The 3” Linenspa topper has a plush feel to it. It’s perfect for side sleepers of any bodyweight. It easily conforms to your body, relieving pressure under your shoulder, ribs, and hip.
The Linenspa does not come with a cover. You’ll have to get one separately if you want to protect the topper from dirt and moisture.
Also, it has some mild off-gassing when new. But the smell goes away after a few days.
The Linenspa 3” Memory Foam Topper is Good For:
- Anyone looking for an affordable memory foam topper.
- Hot sleepers.
- Sleepers looking for a plush topper to soften their firm mattress.
9. Best Latex: Pure Green 100% Natural Latex Mattress Topper
If you love the responsive and supportive feel of latex, we recommend the Pure Green natural latex topper.
For side sleepers, we recommend choosing the 3” topper over the 2” and 1” options.
- 100% natural latex.
- Sleeps cool.
- Multiple thickness options.
- More expensive than memory foam toppers.
The Pure Green natural latex topper is Greenguard Gold Certified, Oeko-Tex Class 1 Certified, and EcoInstitut Certified. So you can trust them when they say the topper is made with 100% natural latex.
Thanks to the natural latex, the Pure Green topper sleeps cool and lasts much longer than synthetic foam toppers.
The Pure Green topper is available in three options: 1”, 2” and 3” thick. For side sleepers, we recommend the 3” thick topper. It has a medium feel, which provides the right amount of body contouring to relieve pressure points.
The 1” and 2” toppers may feel too firm for your comfort.
The Pure Green topper does not come with a cover. You can buy one if you want, or just lay your normal bedsheet on top of it.
Price-wise, the Pure Green topper is more expensive than most foam toppers. If you are looking for a Queen-sized mattress topper in the $100 range, a foam topper is your best option.
The Pure Green Natural Latex Topper is Good For:
- Anyone looking for a natural latex topper.
- Side sleepers who want to improve pressure relief on a firm mattress or add support to a soft mattress.
- Side sleepers who sleep hot.
10. Best for Year-Round Comfort: Sleep & Beyond Organic Merino Wool Topper
If you are looking for a natural wool mattress topper, we recommend this one from Sleep & Beyond. It contains a filling of organic merino wool and an organic cotton cover.
- Organic filling and cover.
- Excellent temperature regulation – keeps you comfortable throughout the year.
- Plush feel.
- Helps with night sweats.
- Requires regular fluffing.
- Not washable.
The Sleep & Beyond wool topper is more of a fluffy mattress pad. It’s just thick enough to soften a firm mattress but not too thick that it makes you sink into the bed.
It’s perfect for side sleepers who want more pressure-point relief while still enjoying good support.
One of the biggest advantages of going with a natural wool topper is its excellent temperature regulation. The Sleep & Beyond topper will keep you cool when it’s hot and insulate you when it’s cold. In other words, it is the best mattress topper/pad for sleepers who want year-round comfort.
The biggest downside of the Sleep & Beyond topper is the price. Made from organic wool and organic cotton, it costs more than ordinary foam toppers.
It’s also not washable. Again, the materials are to blame. Natural wool is delicate and can easily shrink in the washer or dryer. You’ll need to buy a washable cover to protect the topper.
Another downside is that the regular fluffing needed to keep the Sleep & Beyond topper comfortable.
The Sleep & Beyond Organic Merino Wool Topper is Good For:
- Anyone looking for an organic wool topper.
- Sleepers who want a topper that keeps them comfortable all year round.
- Side sleepers looking for a topper to soften their firm mattress without making it overly soft.
Buying Guide: How to Choose a Good Mattress Topper for Side Sleeping
Sleeping on your side can cause pain and soreness if your body is not aligned. If the mattress is too soft, your midsection will sink in lower than the rest of the body, causing spinal misalignment and possible back pain.
On a too-firm mattress, your shoulders and hips don’t get enough cushioning, and soreness could develop on these areas.
The most important consideration when choosing a mattress topper for side sleeping is firmness. Most side sleepers need a soft to the medium mattress topper. The exact level of firmness depends on your body weight.
Side sleepers weighing under 130lbs should get a soft mattress topper. Average weight sleepers (130-230lbs) and heavier sleepers (over 230lbs), will find a medium comfort topper to be the best.
Also, consider how firm your current mattress is. If it is extra-firm, a softer topper will balance it out nicely. If it is medium-firm, get a medium topper to make sure your bed doesn’t get overly soft.
Other important considerations include:
- Material: Memory foam toppers provide the best pressure-point relief for side sleepers. Latex toppers sleep cool and are more responsive. Wool toppers are great for temperature regulation. Down alternative toppers are ideal for those who want to soften their mattress without reducing support.
- Thickness: Generally, thicker mattress toppers are softer. They are also better for heavier sleepers. A 3” topper is perfect for most side sleepers. If you weigh more than 230lbs, get a 4” topper. If you want a topper that balances between plushness and support, get a 2-incher.
- Durability: Natural latex toppers are the most durable. They can last as long as 10 years. Foam toppers last between 3 and 8 years, depending on density. Lower-density foam toppers (under 4lbs) are cheaper, but you’ll need to replace it sooner.
- Cover: A removable cover makes it easier to keep the topper clean. Some covers also include elastic pockets to keep the topper from shifting.
How We Rate Mattress toppers for Side Sleepers
We focus on three factors when rating mattress toppers for side sleepers: firmness, quality of materials, and value.
We rate softer mattress toppers higher because they provide the best pressure relief for side sleepers.
As for the quality of materials, we rate toppers made with high-density foams higher. We also look for CertiPUR-certification to ensure we recommend only safe and environmentally-friendly toppers.
When it comes to latex toppers, natural or organic latex toppers earn the most points.
The last factor is value for money. Do the topper’s quality and sleeping experience match the price?
We rate highly affordable mattress toppers that provide a comfortable sleeping experience and are durable. Luxury mattress toppers also earn high ratings if they are, indeed, luxurious to sleep on and last long.
What is the best mattress topper for side sleepers with hip pain?
We recommend a plush memory foam topper like ViscoSoft. It’ll provide the best cushioning and pain-relief for your hip.
What is the best mattress topper for side sleepers with back pain?
For side sleepers with back pain, we recommend a medium comfort mattress topper that cradles your pressure points without making the bed overly soft to the point where your spine bends.
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