Best Mattress for Side Sleepers 2018

Curious about who has the best beds this year and which brands are duds? See which models have the best mattress reviews in 2017 in our updated guide, and learn what to avoid.

Every year brings new beds, technologies and trends claiming to be the best. Though it can be a lot to keep up with if you haven’t bought a mattress in a while, consumer mattress reviews remain one helpful gauge of potential satisfaction and a useful tool for comparing different beds. First-hand knowledge on a product from someone who’s used it day after day is indispensable. If you reading full review mattresses for side sleepers, click here

What Mattress is Most Popular?

We researched many different brands from the big names to new upstarts. While we focused on the most popular mattress types, innerspring and memory foam, our guide showcases the best and worst that the mattress industry offers. Below are some of the top brands that we found in our research.

  • Sealy: A mainstay for over 100 years has many mattresses on sale that range in price and quality. Their product line consists of both innerspring and memory foam beds.
  • Serta: One of the other larger brands we evaluated has mattresses that range in price from $500 to upwards of $8,000. Read on below for our full take.
  • Amerisleep: A veteran of the online mattress space, they have been selling beds on the internet for over a decade. They manufacture memory foam beds in the United States and range in price from $999 to $1,899.

While the most popular mattresses aren’t always the best ones you should buy, our team found that some of the beds people are talking about most really do stack up against the competition. In general, memory foam mattresses have an average owner satisfaction of 80% compared to innerspring’s 60%. But don’t think that just because its memory foam your bed will be great. There’s huge differences between brands.

To create this guide, we combed through Based on owner reviews, consumer review publications and online review websites for all of the top mattresses. Then we scored each one based on what research says consumers care about the most when buying a mattress. Finally, we curated five of the top-rated memory foam mattresses and five top innerspring mattresses available this year and ranked them accordingly. Read on to compare specifications along with detailed notes on each bed.

Top-Rated Memory Foam Mattresses of 2017

1. Amerisleep AS3 formerly known as Liberty (4.7 Stars)

Winner: Our Top Mattress Recommendation
Some readers have asked us to just boil down this entire article into the highlights and say what we recommend. This mattress is it. Read on for details, or, if you want the quick pick, you can just check out the AS3 by Amerisleep.

Amerisleep AS3 Memory FoamThe Amerisleep AS3 has the best mattress reviews on the brand’s website earning 4.7 out 5 stars from nearly 3,500 reviews from verified customers, and rating high on third party review sites as well. It is one of the more popular plant-based memory foam models from Amerisleep, in the mid-range of its collection.

Why Amerisleep stands above the rest

So many things stand out about the Amerisleep AS3, it’s hard to know where to begin! So we’ll start at the top, with the Celliant-infused cover.

Amerisleep is the only company on our list officially licensed to use Celliant in its mattress covers. This fabric is determined by the FDA1 to promote more restful sleep, and clinical testing showed that people fell asleep on average 15 minutes faster — meaning you get 2 extra hours of sleep per week!

If the cover can do that, just imagine what you get from the rest of the mattress.

Amerisleep uses their own Bio-Pur memory foam in all of their mattresses. This advanced memory foam is created with an “open-cell structure” that does two important things. First, it allows more air to flow through the foam to keep you cool and comfortable. Second, it allows the foam to bounce back faster, so you don’t feel stuck as you change sleeping positions during the night.

amerisleep best mattress brand comfort layer AS3The Amerisleep AS3 also has a special transition foam layer that provides additional, targeted support and pressure relief for common sore spots like the shoulders and lower back. Using their proprietary Surface Modification Technology (SMT) they add precision-cut channels to this layer. SMT creates targeted areas of support and pressure relief, so it’s soft where you want it and firm where you need it. (81% of consumers say targeted back support is important for them when choosing a mattress). Plus the channels allow for even more airflow to keep you cool and comfortable through the night.

All of these innovative layers rest on top of Amerisleep’s Bio-Core foam. This durable support foam stands the test of time so well, Amerisleep offers two decades of total warranty coverage to prove it. No other mattress on our list has a longer warranty.

Another way Amerisleep protects its customers, in addition to their industry leading warranty, is with their risk-free 100 night sleep trial. As long as you give their mattress a fair chance for 30 nights, they will give you a full refund if you’re not completely happy. They’ll even help you find a place to recycle it!

Speaking of recycling, Amerisleep also has a company mission to protect the environment. Their foam partially replaces the petroleum (crude oil) with plant-based Castor oil, which is more sustainable. They also use a patented foam-making process called Variable Pressure Foaming that produces virtually zero emissions — helping keep our air clean and our planet green.

The Amerisleep AS3 is clearly an impressive mattress on paper. So the final question is “do all of these details and features actually help you sleep better?” The answer — according to thousands of verified reviews on the Amerisleep site — is an overwhelming yes. The Amerisleep AS3 gets 4.7 out of 5 stars, and overall 99% of Amerisleep customers rate their mattress three or more stars.

2. Tempurpedic Cloud Supreme Breeze (4.5 Stars)

best mattress brand-tempur-cloud-supreme-breezeThe Tempurpedic Cloud Supreme Breeze is in the middle range of the brand’s lineup, but on the luxury end of the mattress spectrum in terms of price. The Cloud Supreme Breeze receives good reviews on the brand’s website with 4.5 out of 5 stars from over 200 reviewers. However, they just introduced a new model so reviews of prior versions may not be entirely accurate.

Key differentiating factors include a softer feel and cooler materials than other Tempur mattresses. The Cloud Supreme uses both medium and high density memory foams. However, Tempurpedic does not release details about the layers or quality. Core foam densities are not specified by the manufacturer but are estimated between 1.5-1.8 lb. This model has fewer complaints of heat compared to other Tempur beds (average compared to other lines). It rates pretty well in regards to durability, even for heavier people, and Tempurpedic has a good overall reputation.

Price is one of the biggest issues customers have with Tempurpedic beds, as they tend to be significantly more expensive than similar models from other brands. Odor can also be an issue, with higher than average complaints. The higher density memory foam can create a “stuck in a hole” feeling for some people as well, since the foam gets softer next to body heat and remains firmer where it’s cooler.

3. BedInABox Serenity Gel (4.3 Stars)

best bed brand bed in a box serenity Also in the mid-to-upper-range category, the BedInABox Serenity Gel earns good reviews, with an average of 4.3 stars out of 5 from over 40 reviews. This model has two inches of CoolRest fabric for a cover to distinguish it from the brand’s other models (the core and memory foam layers remain similar for most models).

The Serenity Gel uses a lower density memory foam than many others in the price category, but does feature a high-resilience core which is above average. The mattress has average heat complaints despite the cooling gels, though durability does not appear to be a significant issue.
A significant number of people report substantial odor and offgassing with this mattress, much higher than average especially for lower-density foams. Customers who end up unhappy with their beds seem to dislike the retailer’s policy requiring them to keep the mattress at least 60 days prior to returning.

Amerisleep AS3Tempurpedic CloudSupreme BreezeBedInABoxSerenity GelSealy OptimumElation GoldSerta iComfortReinvention3.63.84.04.24.44.64.8Owner Satisfaction Rating

4. Sealy Optimum Elation Gold (3.8 Stars)

Sealy Optimum Elation Gold top mattress brand The Sealy Optimum Elation Gold has a 13-inch profile and rates average to slightly above average in owner satisfaction according to SleepLikeTheDead.com. Small samples of reviews on various retail websites generally put it between 4 and 4.7 out of 5. It is considered the top of the Optimum line and has a medium firmness.

Just like the other models in the Optimum line, the Elation Gold is made with two inches of gel memory foam just below the quilt layer. The Elation Gold is the only model in the line with four inches of OptiSense gel foam to add extra support. The materials used by this brand are estimated to be in the medium density range.

Gel foam was introduced to the Optimum line with the intent of keeping the mattress feeling cooler, but one in ten Optimum mattress owners still complains of heat retention, which is average, despite the premium price point. Initial odors and offgassing are also reported at an average rate. One issue that some consumers face is that this line is often sold under different names at different stores, and the price can also vary considerably by retailer.

5. Serta iComfort Prodigy III (4.0 Stars)

Serta iComfort Prodigy III top mattress brandThe Serta iComfort Prodigy is rated 4.0 out of 5 in owner satisfaction in 100+ reviews on Serta.com. This is near the top of Serta’s iComfort memory foam line and is rated as plush. This uses two layers of gel memory foam in the comfort layers to help it keep cool. There isn’t much actual data to show if the gel foam has improved heat retention issues, and this model is also a newer entrant after a redesign.

The Serta line shows good overall mattress reviews, usually slightly above average on most considerations. This mattress receives lower than average mattress reviews on odors and off gassing though, and slightly lower than average complaints of sleeping hot.

But what places this bed last on the list (despite still being an above-average pick) is that Serta mattresses have some issues with durability and longevity. About one quarter of owners report a loss of support or the development of impressions in the first three years of ownership, which is fairly high compared to the other top brands. They also provide limited information on material quality, making it hard to compare value.

Compare Best-Rated Innerspring Mattresses of 2017

1. Serta iComfort Hybrid Applause II (4.0 Stars)

greatest-mattress-brand-serta-icomfort-hybrid-hb700q-super-pillow-top-mattress The Serta iComfort Hybrid Applause II replaces the previously well-rated Serta iSeries Applause (2014) and Vantage (2015) models. The Applause II comes in both Firm and Plush. With the previous models, both firmnesses do well in reviews and consumer mattress review websites, averaging 4.0/5 on Serta, and 4 to 4.5 stars elsewhere. The older model was also well-received by Consumer Reports.

The Applause II is a mid-level offering for the brand, but the entry-level model in the Hybrid series. Similar to it’s predecessors, it has a wrapped coil-in-coil innerspring system, but using 952 coils now versus the former 1008 coils. It’s toppedwith a thin layer of gel memory foam and regular foam. Serta is not entirely transparent about densities and details of their foams, but estimations are of decent quality. Upfront retailers make comparison shopping easier and customers appreciate honesty.

The Serta’s new Hybrid line appears to perform better than average on motion isolation and slightly better on durability. The Applause II performs pretty averagely on heat and odor, seeming to offer a decent option with fewer pitfalls than many other spring lines but pricing can seem inflated to some reviewers. The return/trial period is also longer than average.

2. Sealy Posturepedic Hybrid Cushion Firm (4.2 Stars)

Sealy Posturepedic Hybrid Cushion Firm greatest mattress brandThe Hybrid Cushion Firm by Sealy Posturepedic tends to earn ratings better than other models in the collection online (in the 4.5 star range), despite being on the lower end of the price for the Hybrid group. It is called the Posturepedic Hybrid Trust at most retailers, could be sold under different names as well.

The Hybrid series features good support with 825 wrapped titanium coils, paired with a thin layer of memory foam and regular foams. Sealy is not entirely transparent about densities, with little information on the memory foam or regular foam layers.

The Sealy Hybrid line does appear to perform better than average on motion isolation and comfort. Pain relief, heat and odor complaints hover in the average range, however durability claims may be a little higher than average with impressions being an issue for some reviewers.

3. Beautyrest Black Mariela Luxury Firm (4.6 Stars)

Beautyrest Black Mariela Luxury Firm top mattress brandFrom Simmons, the Beautyrest Black Mariel Luxury Firm is a newly introduced model.Being new, it has little to no reviews available online however similar previous models generally rate above average. This is a higher-end mattress, costing about $2799 in queen size. It may be found under different names at other retailers, which can be confusing for shoppers.

The firm line has fewer reports of sagging than its pillowtop and plush counterparts. As mentioned before, Simmons mattresses have had questionable durability in the past, but their Black line performs a bit better than others.

Odors are more of an issue with this line than others from Simmons, however, likely due to thicker layers of foam and possibly higher densities. Price is an issue with this and other beds from Simmons’s Black collection. While they do earn earn higher than average reviews, pricing can be more than double average mattress costs for similar overall satisfaction and durability levels. And, getting detailed information on the quality of materials within can prove difficult.

Serta iComfortHybrid Applause IISealy Posturepedic HybridTrust Cushion FirmBeautyrest Black EdentonLuxury FirmSimmon Beautyrest RechargeDenver Mattress Doctor’sChoice Euro Top4.24.34.44.54.64.7Owner Satisfaction Percentage

4. Simmons Beautyrest Recharge Briana Luxury Firm (4 to 4.5 Stars)

top-mattress-brand-Briana-Luxury-Firm-Pillow-TopThe Beautyrest Recharge Briana Luxury Firm mattress is another more recently introduced mattress. It goes by different names depending on the store, and has very little reviews available thus far. But, comparable prior models tended to average around 4 to 4.5 stars. This model falls in the entry level range of the Recharge collection, usually priced around $1000.

The Recharge Briana model features 850 wrapped titanium coils, which is above average for the price category, though some customers report a lack of support. The mattress is paired with gel and regular foams, but the densities are unspecified by Simmons. The Recharge line offers better than average motion isolation, support, comfort, generally proves quiet and doesn’t have high complaints of heat retention.

Durability can be an issue with the Recharge Classic and Simmons mattresses in general, though. Customers report premature sagging quite frequently along with difficulty with returns or warranties. Simmons does have a number of Better Business Bureau complaints regarding returns and warranties.

5. Denver Mattress Doctor’s Choice Euro Top (4.5 Stars)

Doctor's Choice® Euro Top MattressThe Doctor’s Choice Euro Top model is a mid-range offering by Denver Mattress Company. It is fairly popular on the company’s website, receiving above-average ratings compared to spring beds in general with 4.5 out of 5 stars from over 130 reviews. Outside reviews aren’t very easy to find however.

The Doctor’s Choice line features better than average coil counts for this price range, along with encased coils that better limit motion transfer. However, customers who have had their beds longer than six months did report some sagging, and durability issues seem to occur at higher rates than average.

Foams used in the mattress are of decent density compared to other brands, and the company is much more transparent about bed contents than many innerspring retailers. Initial comfort is well-rated, though long-term durability could be an issue especially for heavier individuals, as indicated in the mattress reviews. This type of mattress provides a good value for short-term or guest use, but may lack longevity for regular use or for heavier sleepers.

Ten Worst-Rated Mattress Types to Avoid

Looking over the worst-rated mattress models and brands on Sleep Like The Dead’s website and other consumer mattress review websites, we also noticed a few trends. Without naming names, the following traits are most commonly linked with dissatisfied customers and lower overall satisfaction. Watch out for these trends in order to separate the best mattresses from the inferior ones.

1. Promotional Mattresses

Promotional mattresses are those sold for a limited time only, often as doorbuster deals during major holiday sales. Their primary place is to catch eyes during sales. Since the models tend to be limited to a specific store and time, it can be difficult to research reviews or accurately compare them to other offers. These mattresses are typically priced very cheaply, but have significantly lower quality than average and may also have limited or no warranties.

2. Very Cheap Beds

bmb-very-cheap-beds-mattressesWith the exception of temporary use/guest mattresses and children’s beds, very cheap mattresses (under $500 or so for a queen) generally tend to have worse overall ratings compared to mid-priced beds (in the $800-$2000 range). It is important to carefully weigh quality, reviews, and expected lifespan against the price.

Cheaper mattresses can provide good comfort initially, but where satisfaction tends to suffer is in the longer term, as the lower-quality materials tend to break down faster and lose comfort sooner. These types of beds also tend to have less warranty coverage, meaning they will likely need to be replaced sooner.

3. Too-Thin Mattresses

Thinner mattresses tend to have lower comfort ratings in most lines, especially among side sleepers and larger individuals. This is because the comfort layers in the bed need to be able to adequately cushion the sleeper against the coils or support foam to prevent pressure points.
People over 250 lbs prefer beds of at least 10”, while those over 300 pounds tend to prefer mattresses at least 14” thick. If you are side sleeper, your ideal mattress will likely have at least 3” of cushioning material.

4. Hot or Constrictive Memory Foam

hot-memory-foam__option-2Memory foam can vary considerably by density and formula. Though as a whole memory foam mattresses tend to earn the highest ratings, the people that dislike their beds tend to either have an issue with the heat or difficulty moving on the mattress.

Both issues are most closely linked with beds that use thick layers of high density (over 5 lb) memory foam and foams that are highly temperature sensitive.

“Overall, memory foam beds have a fairly high rate of heat complaints compared to springs and other non-foam mattress types, but significant differences are present across different brands and types of memory foam. For traditional temperature-sensitive memory foam, complaint rates tend to be around 8-12%, with higher density beds sleeping hotter.

Gel infused memory foam feels cooler initially, and these mattresses tend to have heat complaint rates of about 6-8% (with models that have gel close to surface feeling coolest). Plant-based memory foam can sleep up to 25% cooler than other types according to some studies, and plant based mattresses have lower heat complaint rates from 2-6%. As a whole, memory foam mattresses have an owner satisfaction rating of about 81%.”

5. Mattresses with Low-Density Foam

Low density foams, whether regular polyurethane or memory foam, tend to be associated with lower satisfaction over time when it comes to pain relief and durability. For memory foams, low density would be considered under 3.5 lbs. For poly foams, low density is under 1.4 lbs.

Because low density foams have a “less dense” structure, they are more prone to compression and provide a less buoyant feel than higher densities. However, these foams are typically cheaper so can be budget-friendly for infrequently used or temporary mattresses (beds you expect to use less than 3-5 years). Heavier people should consider a foam that is more dense, as it will likely wear less under their weight.

6. Innerspring Beds with Poor Motion Isolation

In innerspring mattresses, one issue that can receive considerable complaints is a lack of motion isolation. This is an issue for couples particularly, as one person’s movements can disturb the other’s sleep.

Mattress types most associated with poor motion isolation are those with bonnell and continuous coils. Pocketed coils and beds with memory foam or latex layers tend to have fewer issues with motion disturbances.

7. Beds with Little or No Warranty

The other complaint seen often in the worst-rated mattresses is related to warranty issues. It is hard to judge how a bed will perform over time even if you are diligent in your research, which is where the warranty comes in. A mattress typically is only useful for a fraction of it’s warranty length, as the table indicates.

For a mid-range and higher bed, a good mattress should have at least 10 years of full coverage during which the retailer will repair or replace defective beds at their expense. Many will also have extended prorated periods during which a portion of costs are covered.

The important thing to look for in a warranty is how deep sagging must be before the warranty kicks in – sagging over 1” can dramatically affect comfort and support. Sagging not covered by warranties is a frequent complaint in many of the worst-rated beds.

8. Too Soft or Firm for Your Needs

Mattress shopping is confusing for many, many people. It can be difficult to know which type of bed to choose or to decode different manufacturers’ terminology. Many mattress complaints stem from beds feeling either too firm or too soft. It’s also important to note that most beds with foams will soften slightly over time, so showroom models may not always feel like the bed you receive.

There is no 100% accurate formula, but generally back sleepers should opt for medium-firm to medium beds, side sleepers medium to plush, and stomach sleepers medium-firm to firm. Side and stomach sleepers put pressure on the bed in different areas than back sleepers. Softer mattresses allow them to sink into the bed for better spine alignment.

Sleep studies find that people with back pain generally feel best on medium to medium firm beds. Since manufacturer descriptions of firmness may be arbitrary, it can be helpful to look for IFD/ILD ratings or read mattress reviews to see if there are any trends in comments regarding firmness. These measurements are meticulous and accurate and refer to the amount of weight needed to compress the foam a certain distance.

9. Overpriced Mattresses

best-mattress-brand-overpriced-expensive-mattressAnother complaint often seen in reviews stems from owners feeling they overpaid for their mattress. Even when they find the bed comfortable, this can be enough to affect satisfaction and ratings.

Several mattress brands price beds high, but use only average materials. Retailers can also use sales tactics to exaggerate prices, such as making comparisons difficult or using high-pressure tactics.

The best way to avoid buyer’s remorse is to carefully compare beds and read reviews. Be sure to get information on all layers and be leery when retailers and manufacturers won’t tell you what is in the mattress they are selling – chances are it’s because the bed is not competitively priced compared to peers. Make sure you stay within your budget constraints, also.

10. Beds with No Return/Exchange Policy

A lack of a return or exchange policy can dramatically affect your satisfaction if the mattress you buy is not quite right. Many dissatisfied reviewers complain about being stuck with a bed they don’t like or having to pay high charges for returns.

Especially when buying online, make sure you can return or at least exchange the bed if you don’t like it with reasonable fees. It can take a few weeks to get used to a bed, so you should have at least 30 days to make up your mind. Some retailers will require you to try the bed for a certain number of days prior to returning, so be mindful.

Ultimately, taking the time to research a little and compare different beds makes it easier to find the perfect mattress for your situation and avoid surprises. Armed with basics and with a little work, you’ll be sure to come away with sweet dreams rather than a nightmare when you buy your next bed.

Always ask about what the mattress is made of, see how prices compare to similar offers, and don’t forget to check in to retailer policies. Looking online for reviews can also help provide with more information on factors such as comfort, durability, and performance that can be difficult to judge as well. You can do your research without leaving the house.

Don’t get pressured into making a purchase. If a salesperson won’t let up, walk away and come back after doing some careful consideration. Some retailers thrive on customers they can push into a hasty decision. By shopping online you can avoid this for the most part.

It’s Decision Time!

perfect mattress decision recommendationsNow that you’ve got all the information about the best beds of the year, plus the ones to avoid, it’s time to decide which one is right for you. Our top recommendation is the Amerisleep AS3, but of course you have to factor in your own preferences and budget.

And if you want even more information on finding the right bed, take a look at our previous guides for more information on buying a mattress online and comparing different bed types.