Our best pillow-choosing tips for back and side sleepers.
Is there any feeling more glorious than that stretch above your head after a really good night’s sleep? It just makes you want to yawn and crawl into bed right now, doesn’t it? What you might not know is just how much having the right pillow affects your sleep. Whether you’re a back sleeper or a side sleeper, it’s essential to choose a pillow that supports your spine and neck during sleep. Without the right pillow, you’ll wake up cranky and poorly rested—and who wants that?
We’re breaking down what you need to know about choosing the perfect pillow for back and side sleeping, from the pros and cons of the sleep positions themselves and our favorite tips for back and side sleepers. We’ve included things to remember when choosing a pillow and our pick for the best pillow for back and side sleeping.
The pros and cons of back and side sleeping
Sleeping on your back and on your side are both really common ways to sleep, and they both have their pros and cons. Here are the pros to back and side sleeping:
- Back sleepers tend to sleep in a way that keeps their spines neutral and necks in alignment.
- Side sleepers often have less pain in the low back, since a side sleeping position can take the pressure off of their lower back and hips.
- Back sleeping puts less pressure on internal organs and can relieve things like sinus pressure and heartburn.
- Side sleeping reduces the chance of snoring and can improve digestion.
However, just like most things, there are also cons to back and side sleeping:
- Back sleepers often struggle with snoring, and the position can worsen sleep apnea.
- Side sleepers tend to deal with shoulder pain due to the increased pressure on the shoulders during sleep.
- Back sleeping can also sometimes cause increased lower back pain for sleepers.
- Side sleeping can also highlight neck pain if your sleeping position pinches your neck too close to your shoulders.
Our favorite sleep tips for back and side sleepers
When it comes to sleeping well as a back and side sleeper, a lot of it comes down to the pillow resting underneath your head. Back sleepers should look for a soft pillow that’s still on the flatter side, and firmness is key. Side sleepers should choose a pillow fluffy enough to make up for the increased space between their head, neck and shoulders. Here are our tips for choosing the best pillow for back and side sleeping:
- Back sleepers who deal with low back pain can put a pillow under their knees or lower back, and side sleepers can sleep with additional pillow support behind their backs.
- Back and side sleepers should get in bed each night in a position that helps their back feel best since that’s the best way to encourage your body into a consistently healthy sleep position.
- Back sleepers who snore loudly should consider a wedge pillow.
- Side sleepers who wake up with sore shoulders should mindfully avoid wrenching their arm up under their pillows—instead adding another pillow if needed.
Key things to remember when choosing a pillow for back and side sleeping
When choosing the best pillow for back sleeping, veer more towards a firmer, flatter pillow that still has an incredibly soft fill to it. Back sleepers don’t need a completely flat pillow, but they also need something that doesn’t affect the head and neck alignment.
When choosing the best pillow for side sleeping, sleepers should look for a fluffier, softer pillow with a bit of firmness. Side sleepers need a softer pillow to fill the space between their head, neck and shoulders in a side sleeping position.
The best pillow for back and side sleeping
At Skylark+Owl, we understand how important it is to have the right pillow for your unique sleep style, which is why we offer our luxurious pillows in a variety of firmness levels for everyone. The best pillow for back and side sleeping is our Refined Pillow, which is filled with a cozy down-mimicking material with all of the softness without any of the allergies. Back sleepers will want to go with the firmer option, while side sleepers will like the softer version.
Different pillows work for different sleep styles, and we’re proud to offer pillows for every person, regardless of the way they sleep. Whether your loved ones are back sleepers, side sleepers or stomach sleepers, Skylark + Owl has the pillow.