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If you like to sleep on your side at night, you’re in good company! Studies have shown that side sleeping is the most popular sleep position, so it should really come as no surprise that there are specific pillows made just for this demographic.
If you're in this group, it’s important to keep your spine and neck in proper alignment throughout the night, otherwise you may very well wake up with aches and pains. Therefore, you’re going to need both a good mattress and a good pillow. The perfect pillow will keep your neck in a neutral position, so it needs to be fairly thick and supportive. Foam pillows are often good for this purpose, but you can find down or down-alternative options that fit the bill, too. Keep an eye out for pillows labeled as "firm" or "extra firm"—this doesn't mean that they aren't soft, but rather that they're denser and therefore more supportive.
On the hunt for a new spot to rest your head? Here are the best pillows for side sleepers.
Coop Home Goods Premium Adjustable Loft Pillow
If you’ve ever wished you could add a little more height to your pillow (or, alternatively, remove some), the Coop Home Goods Adjustable Loft Pillow is sure to blow your mind. This cult-favorite pillow is filled with shredded memory foam and actually comes with a bag of extra filling, allowing you to plump up the pillow to the perfect height for neck support. Just unzip and add or take out the fill to your liking!
This USA-made pillow comes with a five-year warranty, and you can test it out for up to 100 nights, returning it for a full refund if you’re not impressed. (We think you will be, though.)
Tuft & Needle Original Foam Pillow
There’s nothing better than resting your head on the cool side of the pillow, and you won’t have to flip this Tuft & Needle pillow back and forth to find the perfect temperature. It's made from the brand’s signature adaptive foam, which is infused with both graphite and cooling gel to help dissipate heat throughout the night, keeping you from overheating.
It comes in both standard and King sizes, both of which are 5 inches thick—perfect for keeping your neck aligned if you sleep on your side. Plus, Tuft & Needle offers a 100-night sleep trial, allowing you to return the pillow if it doesn’t elevate your sleep experience.
UTTU Sandwich Pillow
The UTTU Sandwich Pillow cradles your head like no other thanks to its unique contoured design. It’s made from an adjustable piece of memory foam, and the dip in the middle provides just the right support for side sleepers.
If you find the pillow to be too tall for your needs, you can simply remove the middle foam layer to reduce its height. Plus, the UTTU pillow is made from a special type of foam that doesn't become firmer in colder weather, ensuring it’s comfortable to sleep on all year round. Our senior editorial director, Dwyer Frame is a big fan of this option.
This pillow has changed my life. After years of neck and TMJ pain, I swapped out my feather pillow for this and I have never looked back. I am now that girl who travels with a pillow
Lauren Ralph Lauren Logo Down Alternative Pillow
Looking for something really good and really budget-friendly? Look no further than the Logo Pillow from Ralph Lauren, available exclusively at Macy's. Simple yet comfortable, it comes with a down alternative fill in three densities—medium, firm, and extra-firm. (Pro tip: Side sleepers will be happiest with the extra-firm.) The best part is that it's pretty much always on sale, so you're guaranteed to score it for way less than the $20 price tag.
Casper Down Pillow
Everyone knows about Casper’s iconic mattresses—they were some of the first to be delivered in a box!—but did you know the brand sells pillows, too? The Casper Down Pillow is filled with ethically sourced down feathers for a delightfully cushy night’s sleep, and it has a unique five-chamber structure that makes it more supportive than your average down pillow. What's really nice, though, is that the whole thing is machine washable, making it easy to maintain. The pillow comes in standard and King sizes, and Casper lets you try it out for 30 nights, risk-free.
Beckham Hotel Collection Gel Pillows, Set of 2
If you're really trying to be cost-effective, you can't do much better than this set of two pillows found on Amazon. Made with a down alternative, gel-infused fill, these pillows are honestly ideal for any sleep position—including side sleepers. They have a plush fill that's supportive and soft, as well as a breathable, sateen cover that'll keep you cool all night. They're also a great option for those who suffer from allergies, as they're dust mite, mold, and mildew resistant, and can be thrown in the washer when they need sprucing up. Commerce editor Nicole Lund is a long-time fan of this option and recommends it to everyone who asks.
I didn't expect too much from these pillows when I got them over three years ago, but they are hands-down the best I've ever tried (and I've tested a lot of pillows). They're great for any type of sleeper, so if you're someone who switches from your side to your stomach through the night you'll love these.
Do you often get hot during the night? Like, really hot? If so, the Bear Pillow may very well be your saving grace. This foam pillow is designed to stay super cool, thanks to its special “double ice” cover and mesh panels that increase breathability.
The Bear Pillow is made from the brand’s LOFT-X hybrid foam, which offers the contouring support of memory foam but the resilience and bounce of latex. The material is both hypoallergenic and antimicrobial, and reviewers swear the “double-ice” cover is like magic, staying the perfect temperature all night.
Brooklinen Down Pillow
No matter how squishy you like your pillow, there’s a Brooklinen Down Pillow that will perfectly suit your sleep style. This pillow is filled with down clusters and feathers, and it’s available in plush, mid-plush, and firm styles. (The brand recommends the firm option for side-sleepers, as it’s the most supportive.) The mid-plush and firm pillows feature a dual-core structure for superior support, and you have your choice between standard and King sizes. If you want the feel of down but not the real thing, Brooklinen also has a down alternative option that's just as good.
Purple Harmony Pillow
Who knew that so much time and effort could go into designing a pillow? The Purple Harmony Pillow took more than a year and 50 prototypes to get right, and the end result is truly a pillow like no other. It’s made up of a hypoallergenic latex core surrounded by a 360-degree Purple Grid shell, which offers great support and breathability. All that is wrapped up in a moisture-wicking cover that will help you keep your cool, even if your dreams get intense.
The Purple Harmony Pillow is designed to maintain its shape better than other pillows, and it instantly adapts to your head and neck for premium comfort. Plus, it comes in both standard and tall heights, which are 6.5 and 7.5 inches thick, respectively.
Nest Easy Breather Pillow
As the name suggest, the Easy Breather Pillow is a great option if you're a side sleeper and tend to sleep hot. Filled with shredded CertiPUR-US foam and wrapped in a Tencel-polyester blend cover, this pillow is breathable, comfortable, and totally supportive (it's another favorite of commerce editor Nicole Lund's). It's also customizable, with the ability to take out foam as you please to get the support just right. Take note that no part of the pillow is washable, so you'll want to invest in a pillow protector to keep it fresh.
This pillow lives up to the hype! It's a bit firmer than other ones out there, which might take some getting used to, but after a few nights you'll realize that's just what your side-sleeping self needs.
Honeydew Scrumptious Side Sleeper Pillow
One common woe when sleeping on your side is that your shoulder can end up in an awkward position, but the Honeydew Side Sleeper Pillow solves that issue. This U-shaped pillow has an innovative shoulder cut-out that keeps your upper body from being awkwardly scrunched, and it also offers an adjustable fill level so you can customize its height to your precise sleeping needs.
The Honeydew Pillow is stuffed with shredded copper-infused memory foam that’s both cooling and antimicrobial, and the brand offers a 60-night sleep trial so you can test the product out for yourself before committing to it.
Layla Kapok Pillow
The Layla Kapok Pillow gives you the best of both worlds, as it’s filled with a mixture of memory foam and Kapok fiber, a light, airy material that feels similar to down. The end result is a pillow that cradles your head, making you feel like you’re sleeping on a plush cloud. This pillow is covered in a breathable copper-infused cover that keeps it fresh, and the pillow arrives overstuffed, allowing you to remove fill as needed to achieve just the right height.
Sleep Number Comfortfit Pillow
The top-rated Comfortfit Pillow from Sleep Number is unique in more ways than one. It's made from a blend of shredded memory foam and down-alternative fibers, and it comes in three different shapes—Classic, Curved, and Ultimate. The curved option is ideal for side sleepers, as it has a contoured shape that leaves room for your shoulder, but you might also love the Ultimate pillow, which includes three removable inserts that let you change up the height and support level to suit your individual sleep style.
Saatva Latex Pillow
Latex is known for being just as supportive as foam but a bit more breathable, and side sleepers will delight in resting their head on the Saatva Latex Pillow. With its shredded latex core that’s surrounded by a down-alternative fill, this pillow offers the perfect amount of support for your head and neck, adapting to your every movement throughout the night. Latex is also naturally hypoallergenic and mildew-resistant, ensuring the pillow will stay fresh for years to come.