Best Pillows for Stomach Sleepers

Check out what stomach sleepers should look for in a pillow as well as our top picks.

By Loren Bullock

Stomach sleeping is often regarded as the worst sleeping position. Not only is it the least popular sleep position, but it is recommended by doctors that you try and change positions if you sleep on your front.

But, us stomach sleepers find this position extremely comfortable, so it is crucial to have the proper pillow. We’ve found some of the best pillows for stomach sleepers and compiled them into this list. We also tell you about what to look for in a stomach sleeping pillow to help your pillow-shopping process along.


Our Picks for the Best Stomach Sleeper Pillows

By clicking on the product links in this article, Mattress Advisor may receive a commission fee at no cost to you, the reader. Read full disclosure statement.
Bluewave Bedding stomach sleeper pillow

Best Cooling: Bluewave Bedding Super Slim Memory Foam Pillow

Unlike those foam pillows that seem to produce heat, the Bluewave Bedding pillow is made up of cooling gel memory foam with holes for ventilation that provide maximum air circulation. It comes wrapped in a cover that is 60% polyester and 40% bamboo derived rayon, a naturally cooling fabric. This cover is easily removable and machine washable.

This standard size pillow is the perfect thin loft for stomach sleepers—about 2.5 to 2.75 inches high. This design is perfect for those with neck pain or front sleepers in need of proper spine alignment. The foam is CertiPur-US certified, meaning it is free from harmful allergens, toxins, and additives.

Belly Sleep stomach sleeper pillow

Best for Pain Relief: Belly Sleeper Pillow

Waking up sore and full of aches? The Belly Sleeper pillow by Belly Sleep boasts spinal alignment as its primary feature. This thin pillow was made for front sleepers especially: the curved edges ensure uniform pressure and a neutral position for your head, neck, and spine. On top of that, the firmness of the Belly Sleep pillow is a perfect combination of soft and firm—it sinks and reduces pressure.

It’s bamboo/polyester combo cover wicks away sweat and excess moisture during the night, but this won’t cause odor thanks to its antibacterial properties. This cover is also removable for easy care and machine washability.

Pancake adjustable stomach pillow

Best Adjustable: Pancake Adjustable Layer Pillow

If you’re a stomach-combo sleeper, adjustable pillows are your best friend. The Pancake pillow offers six different layers and heights, so you can find your perfect loft. How does it work? Well, inside the pancake pillow are six removable layers. Add and subtract layers to find the height that best suits your sleeping preferences.

Inside each pillow layer lies a hypoallergenic, microfiber, down alternative fill. On the outside is a 300 thread count cotton cover for a smooth feel. The Pancake pillow comes in both queen (18” x 26”) and king sizes (18” x 34”), so you don’t have to compromise the length that you’re used to.

Elite Rest Slim stomach sleeper

Best Value: Elite Rest Slim Sleeper Pillow

Looking for a pillow that gives you the most bang for your buck? Look no further than the Elite Rest Slim Sleeper pillow. This memory foam pillow is 2.5” high and is made with ergonomic edges that stomach sleepers find extremely comfortable. Its half-pillow design is great for sleepers who aren’t a fan of flipping their pillows: made with a rounded top and a flat bottom.

The Elite Rest also provides the proper spinal alignment you need when sleeping on your stomach while reducing snoring. Its 100% cotton cover is removable and machine washable as well.

Best Memory Foam: Xtreme Comforts Slim Shredded Memory Foam Pillow

Memory foam pillows are great at contouring support, and the Xtreme Comforts Slim pillow is no different. In fact, it’s made with shredded memory foam, which helps pillows keep their shape. Because of this, it works well for true blue stomach sleepers and stomach combo sleepers alike. The bamboo cover allows for airflow and breathability.

The shredded foam design also promotes alignment, helps with insomnia, reduces tossing and turning, and reduces snoring. Not only is this pillow comfortable, pain relieving, and supportive, it’s safe as well. The pillow is resistant to dust mites, hypoallergenic, and CertiPur certified.


Pros and Cons of Stomach Sleeping

About 7% of the population sleep on their stomachs. This is super low compared to the approximate 70% of people who are side sleepers and 13% who sleep on their backs. Let’s see why that is by looking at the pros and cons of stomach sleeping.

Pros

  • Reduces Snoring: Back sleepers are at the biggest risk of snoring because the neck is compressed, constricting the airways. But when you sleep on your stomach, your neck is elongated and your airways are free.
  • Helps with Sleep Apnea: Just like with snoring, back sleepers are at a bigger risk for sleep apnea. Unlike merely snoring, sleep apnea causes you to stop breathing entirely multiple times during the night. Stomach sleeping, again, frees your airways and makes it so you can breathe easier.

Cons

  • Neck and Spine Pain: Stomach sleeping is the worst position for alignment. It creates tension on your spine by flattening it unnaturally and, when you turn your head to the side, strains your neck muscles. People who sleep on their fronts often wake up with neck or back aches and pain.
  • More Tossing and Turning: If you do end up straining your neck or back, your body will try to correct this by shifting constantly at night. This tossing and turning can wake you up and disrupt your sleep, leaving you drowsy the next day.
  • Wrinkles: Sleeping with your face smushed into the pillow night after night can cause premature wrinkles on your face.

How to Use a Pillow as a Stomach Sleeper

There is debate as to whether stomach sleepers even need a pillow at night. Pillows can cause unnecessary neck and back strain if the loft is too high. But if you find sleeping without a pillow to be an impossibility, there are proper ways to use pillows as a stomach sleeper.

When it comes to proper alignment, the best way to sleep on a stomach pillow is with your forehead resting on the pillow. This allows room for you to breathe but no unnecessary strain on your neck. Experts also recommend placing a pillow under your pelvis to create a curve in your spine.

What to Look for in a Stomach Sleeping Pillow

Buying the right pillow can take away a lot of pain and improve sleep for stomach sleepers. Here are some things to look for.

Loft

Thin pillows or pillows with a low loft are the best option for stomach sleepers. A low loft is considered to be a height of less than 3 inches. If front sleepers use a pillow with a loft that is too high, it will cause excess strain on the neck. Choosing a thin pillow will ensure better neck alignment.

It is also possible to choose a pillow with a medium loft, but a deep sink, as long as your head is in line with the rest of your spine.

Firmness

When it comes to firmness, the thinner the pillow, the firmer it should be. The pillow should still hold your head up to be in line with the rest of your body. If your prefer the feel of a soft pillow, makes sure the sink doesn’t align your head too high or too low.

Also, when it comes to soft pillows, be careful of suffocation. As your head sinks into the pillow, each side rises to frame your face. Too much plush, it could block your airways.

Material

  • Memory Foam: Memory foam works well as pillow material for stomach sleepers because it contours to your specific head shape. Memory foam is also known for being extremely supportive. Shredded memory foam, in particular, is known for keeping its shape longer and is more malleable.
  • Latex: Latex is very similar to memory foam except it is more natural and buoyant. Latex is also a naturally cool material. However, many latex pillows do not come in lofts low enough for stomach sleepers. But if you find one that does, try it out.
  • Down: Down is the soft layer of feathers found on ducks and geese. Down pillows are often soft and moldable—perfect for a sleep position that often moves around throughout the night. Down is a great option for front sleepers who want a hotel luxury pillow.
  • Feather: Pillows with a feather fill are often a mix of feather and down. The feather addition creates a firmer feel and a plush pillow. Their moldability makes the loft adjustable. Feather pillows also last longer than most other pillow materials.

Cost

The cost of a good stomach sleeper pillow can range anywhere from $35 to $100. Material and size will play the biggest role in the price differential, feather and memory foam being the cheapest, down and latex being the more expensive options.


Summary

When it comes to pillows for stomach sleepers, shoppers should look for thinner pillows with a supportive, adjustable, or contouring filling. The best way to use your stomach sleeper pillow is to lie your forehead on it and place another pillow under your pelvis. Using a pillow specifically made for front sleepers can ease neck and back pain, as well as next-day drowsiness.


Comments (0)


Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *