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Buying Guides

13 Best Mattresses for Back Pain [2024 Guide]

    Last Updated
    August 18, 2023
    13
    min read

     The verdict: The Purple Restore™ Hybrid Mattress is the best mattress for back pain because it works for all types of sleepers. It’s built for pressure relief and responds to your movements throughout the night, fending off any morning aches and pains.

    There’s nothing worse than waking up to aches and pains – but the feeling is all too familiar to many. Starting the day refreshed is critical to health and happiness, but meeting each morning with back pain makes that reality less likely. 

    If you suffer from back pain, you’re not alone. According to the Health Policy Institute at Georgetown University, 65 million Americans have suffered a recent episode of back pain, and 16 million Americans experience chronic back pain — nearly 8% of all adults. However, whether you have regular lower back pain or sciatic nerve pain, back pain sufferers can find comfort in the right mattress.

    The best mattress for back pain is the one that fits your sleeping style and provides the proper support to keep your spine in neutral alignment. Unfortunately, there isn't a one-mattress-fits-all for everyone with back pain, but there are a few top options that can significantly help reduce pain. 

    Below, we break down the 13 best mattresses for back pain, what kind of sleeper they’re best for, and the steps you can take to find the best mattress for your specific sleep style.

    1. Purple RestorePlus™ Hybrid Mattress

    The Purple RestorePlus™ Hybrid Mattress on a cream upholstered bed frame between two wooden nightstands.

    Best for: All sleep styles 

    Price: 

    • Twin XL: $2,445
    • Full: $2,745
    • Queen: $2,895
    • King: $3,495
    • Cal King: $3,495
    • Split King: $4,890

    It’s a common misconception that the best mattress for back pain is also the softest. The Purple RestorePlus™ Hybrid Mattress proves this theory wrong with a medium-firm feel that works to combat the primary causes of back pain. 

    Purple’s Premium Collection of mattresses uses joint cradling to relieve pressure and tension on the back while responding to your body’s movements during the night — with the RestorePlus™ Hybrid Mattress being the top performer.  This mattress offers zoned support for the center third of your body and gives extra support to the lower and middle back. 

    Using Purple’s signature GelFlex® Grid, this mattress prioritizes lumbar support throughout the night so that you can avoid lingering back pain regardless of your preferred sleeping position. 

    Benefits 

    Considerations 

    Uses Purple’s GelFlex® Grid to isolate motion

    May be firmer than side sleepers prefer 

    Cradles pressure points to relieve back pain 

     

    Zoned support for the center third of the body 

     

    10-year warranty, 100-night trial, and free shipping and returns 

     
    A chart showing information about the Purple Restore™ Hybrid Mattress.

    2. TEMPUR-Adapt® ProAdapt Mattress: Medium Hybrid Feel

     The TEMPUR-Adapt® ProAdapt Mattress on a charcoal gray upholstered bed frame in a light blue room.

    Best for: Back and stomach sleepers looking for a firmer mattress 

    Price: $3,399 (Queen)  

    The TEMPUR-Adapt® ProAdapt Mattress comes equipped with pressure relief and motion cancellation, allowing it to adapt to your weight and shape. Able to respond as you toss and turn during the night, this mattress uses motion canceling so you’re not disturbed by your partner’s movements.

    The medium hybrid feel offers a level of firmness that may appeal to back and stomach sleepers who suffer from back pain. However, this feel may be too firm for side sleepers. 

    Benefits 

    Considerations

    Targets and supports pressure points  

    Firmer than most medium-firm mattresses, which could be uncomfortable for some 

    Heavier foam density, which is good for longevity 

    Foam is stronger than most, making it more difficult to move around 

    90-night trial period 

    Tempur material is harder to move around in 

    3. Sleep Number® c2 Smart Bed

    The Sleep Number c2 Bed on a gray bed frame in a blue room.

    Best for: Couples looking for customizable firmness options  

    Price: $1,099 (Queen)

    The Sleep Number® c2 Smart Bed adjusts firmness levels on each side of the bed depending on your movements, which can be very helpful if you and your partner prefer different levels of firmness. 

    Like most Sleep Number products, you can also get access to your SleepIQ® score with the c2 smart bed, which gives you personalized data about your sleep. With these insights available, you can better understand the best way to set your mattress so it supports your specific sleep style.

    Benefits 

    Considerations

    Responds to motions 

    Requires electric source 

    Customizes firmness based on you and your partner’s movements 

    Doesn’t have a foam pad between cover and air chambers  

    Offers personalized sleep data

     
    A chart showing information about the Sleep Number® Climate360® Smart Bed.

    4. Saatva Classic Mattress

    An overheard shot of the Saatva Classic Mattress in a large room with tall windows.

    Best for: Back sleepers suffering from lingering pain 

    Price: $1,995 (Queen)

    Saatva provides a firm mattress designed to prevent aches and pains through their Lumbar Zone® Technology. This mattress and technology work to ensure spine alignment — especially for back sleepers.

    An important note about the Saatva Classic Mattress is that it has limited motion isolation technology, which can make it less appealing for couples or individuals who sleep with pets at the foot of their bed 

    Benefits 

    Considerations

    Less expensive than some competitors 

    Limited motion isolation 

    Choice of three firmness levels 

    Not great for couples 

    365-day trial period 

    $99 fee on returns 

    A chart showing information about the Saatva Classic Mattress.

    5. The WinkBed Mattress

    The WinkBed Mattress in a white room next to a circular table and green plant.

    Best for: Those looking for a variety of firmness options 

    Price: $1,799 (Queen) 

    With deep support and dense cushioning, the Winkbed Mattress is another support option for sleepers who experience back, shoulder, and hip pain. 

    The Winkbed uses a hybrid design merging foam and inner springs to provide support throughout the night — no matter how mobile of a sleeper you are. Since the mattress relies heavily on the innerspring, it’s more bouncy than competitor mattresses, which may be uncomfortable for some. 

    Benefits 

    Considerations

    Four different firmness options 

    Coils may be too bouncy for some

    Pocketed coils for support 

     

    Lifetime warranty 

     
    A chart showing information about The WinkBed Mattress.

    6. Nectar Memory Foam Mattress

    The Nectar Memory Foam Mattress shown in a dark gray room next to a bedside table.

    Best for: Hot sleepers 

    Price: $699 (Queen) 

    One of the most affordable mattresses sold by Nectar, the memory foam mattress is designed with three layers of foam that are cool to the touch making it an appealing option for hot sleepers. 

    With a medium-firm feel, Nectar’s memory foam mattress offers pressure relief through its comfort layer, which works to support your spine through heat and pressure after you lie down.

    Benefits 

    Considerations

    Cheaper option than competitors 

    May be too firm for some 

    Designed for all types of sleepers 

     

    Lifetime warranty 

     
    A chart showing information about Nectar Memory Foam Mattress.

    7. Amerisleep AS2 Mattress

    The Amerisleep AS2 Mattress in a modern room with a wooden table on each side.

    Best for: Back and stomach sleepers 

    Price: $1,549 (Queen) 

    The Amerisleep AS2 mattress means to aid healthy spine alignment. Using exclusive technology to prevent sagging and reduce lingering pain, the AS2 offers a durable and supportive structure that prioritizes getting rid of pesky aches and pains when you wake up.

    Like some of the other firmer mattresses listed, however, side sleepers may seek more cushion than the AS2 provides. 

    Benefits 

    Considerations 

    Provides support for the head, back, and legs 

    Marketed as medium-firm, but may be too firm for some

    Tailored to stomach and back sleepers 

    Shorter warranty than competitors  

    100 night trial period 

     
    A chart showing information about the Amerisleep AS2 Mattress.

    8. Helix Dusk Mattress

    A man in a white shirt lying on a Helix Dusk Mattress placed centrally in a room.

    Best for: Edge support 

    Price: $1,373.80 (Queen)

    Another budget pick, the Helix Dusk Mattress provides support for those who suffer from back pain for under $1,500. 

    Designed specifically for back and stomach sleepers, the Helix Dusk contains multiple foam layers to support you throughout the night as well as individually wrapped coils for edge support.  

    Benefits 

    Considerations

    Specifically designed for back and stomach sleepers 

    Less comfortable for side sleepers 

    Responsive foam layers 

    Shorter warranty than competitors 

    100-night sleep trial

     
    A chart showing information about the Helix Dusk Mattress.

    9. DreamCloud Hybrid Mattress

    The DreamCloud Hybrid Mattress in a large room with sheets nicely folded on top of it.

    Best for: Heavier individuals who suffer from back pain 

    Price: $799 (Queen)

    Built with pressure-relieving gel memory foam and innerspring coils, the DreamCloud Hybrid Mattress prioritizes relieving back pain through its unique design. 

    With additional support through individually wrapped coils, consider this mattress if you’re looking for strong lumbar support. Heavier individuals, especially, may find comfort with the DreamCloud Hybrid Mattress. 

    Benefits 

    Considerations

    Offers additional support for heavier individuals 

    Not ideal for stomach sleepers 

    Great for back sleepers 

    Foam may be too hot for some

    One-year trial period 

     
    A chart showing information about the DreamCloud Hybrid Mattress.

    10. Nolah Evolution 15” Mattress

    The Nolah Evolution 15” Mattress in a bright room with a tall green plant and two small tables.

    Best for: Especially mobile sleepers  

    Price: $2,499 (Queen) 

    The Nolah Evolution 15 Mattress protects side sleepers throughout the night by keeping your spine aligned as your body curves. No matter how you contort your body during the night, the Nolah Evolution 15” adjusts to your motions in order to keep your back supported. 

    Additionally, the mattress employs their patented HDMax™ Tri-Zone™ coils to identify pressure points and create targeted support — which helps to keep the spine aligned throughout the night. 

    Benefits 

    Considerations

    Three different firmness levels 

    Limited options for those who prefer softer mattresses 

    Targets midsection and spine

    Protection comes at an extra cost 

    Works to reduce pressure on joints

     
    A chart showing information about the Nolah Evolution 15” Mattress.

    11. Casper Wave Hybrid Mattress™

    The Casper Wave Hybrid Mattress™ placed centrally in a dark green room with overhead lights and green plants.

    Best for: Side sleepers  

    Price: $2,895 (Queen)

    The main appeal of the Casper Wave Hybrid Mattress™ is its three layers of Zoned Support™ — which divides the mattress into four distinct ergonomic zones. 

    With this technology, the mattress works to keep you supported regardless of where you end up on the bed. Casper’s premium memory foam and Zoned Support™ should be considered by those who suffer from back pain, but remember that memory foam can be difficult to move around on during the night. 

    Benefits 

    Considerations 

    Uses premium memory foam to absorb pressure 

    More expensive than competitors 

    Includes distinct ergonomic zones for targeted pressure 

    Might be too firm for some sleepers 

    100-night free trial 

     
    A chart showing information about the Casper Wave Hybrid Mattress™.

    12. Avocado Green Mattress

    A woman and her baby lying on top of an Avocado Green Mattress with a painting and plant behind them.

    Best for: Those looking an organic mattress that’s still suitable for relieving back pain 

    Price: $1,799 (Queen) 

    The Avocado Green Mattress prides itself on its commitment to sustainability — as it claims to be 100% organic and needle-crafted by hand. 

    Beyond these features, however, the mattress also works well for back support, using 1,438 pocketed support coils to create five distinct zones tailored for support. Like the Casper Wave Hybrid Mattress™, these ergonomic zones provide continuous support throughout the mattress. 

    Benefits 

    Considerations

    Eco-friendly 

    Not ideal for side sleepers 

    Has distinct ergonomic zones 

    Coils may be too bouncy for some

    1-year trial period 

     
    A chart showing information about the Avocado Green Mattress.

    13. Cocoon™ Chill Mattress by Sealy

    The Cocoon™ Chill Mattress by Sealy in a sleek retro room with wooden shelves featuring records and plants.

    Best for: Stomach sleepers 

    Price: $1,079 (Queen)

    The Cocoon Chill Mattress by Sealy is another budget pick, with a California king costing under $1,500 — a mattress size that can often reach $2,500 to $3,000. 

    While the Cocoon Chill Mattress lacks some of their competitors' technology, it’s a cheaper option that still provides suitable support. However, you may need to look to mattresses utilizing more advanced technology for the best support.  

    Benefits 

    Considerations

    Less expensive than competitors 

    Less effective for side sleepers who experience back pain 

    Isolates motion well, making it a solid choice for couples

    Might be too springy for some 

    A chart showing information about the Cocoon™ Chill Mattress by Sealy.

    How To Choose a Mattress for Back Pain

    When mattress shopping, you’re presented with a slew of options to choose between: Hybrid mattresses, memory foam mattresses, and mattresses with different firmness options. With all these options, it’s often difficult to conclude which type is best for your specific needs. 

    Remember, you should always talk with your doctor about how to best manage back pain. However, if you decide to invest in a new mattress, here are a few factors to consider before making your purchase: 

    Mattress Type

    The type of mattress you choose makes a big difference in how comfortably you sleep. Several types of mattresses include innerspring, memory foam, hybrid, and latex, with some types providing better pressure point relief than others.

    • Innerspring mattresses use coils to provide support as you sleep. This type of mattress isn't great at providing pressure point relief and may cause unnecessary pain when you wake up in the morning.
    • Memory foam mattresses are known for cushioning pressure points, such as shoulders and hips. They also do a great job at supporting the body and helping your spine maintain neutral alignment. The downsides are lack of adequate airflow and difficulty of movement. 
    • A hybrid mattress is another excellent option. It combines comfort layers of memory foam or latex with pocketed coils to provide comfort and support and help keep you cool while you sleep. It's a great choice for hot sleepers and may even be what you need to help alleviate your back pain.
    • Latex mattresses are great options made from natural materials that people who prefer environmentally friendly beds use. They also offer solid support and comfort while helping you sleep relatively cooler than a memory foam mattress.

    Density

    When it comes to memory foam mattresses, density is not related to the thickness of the mattress. Instead, mattress density refers to the density of the actual memory foam — which is related to the firmness of the mattress.  

    Density is measured by indention load deflection, or ILD. ILD measures the amount of force required to compress the foam layer of the mattress. The higher the ILD, the firmer the foam, and vice versa. Noting the ILD ranking can help when comparing the firmness of two similar mattresses. 

    Pain Points

    The mattress you choose should help cushion the pressure points that most often cause you pain. Common pressure points are the neck, shoulders, hips, and lower back. The lower back, or lumbar region, is essential to care for if you suffer from back pain.

    Look for a mattress that will cradle pressure points to give you both pain and pressure relief. This will help you sleep better and not wake up stiff or sore.

    Sleeping Position

    Your sleeping position can make a big difference in what mattress you should choose. Stomach sleepers may suffer from back pain more than back sleepers and should look into a firmer mattress to better support their hips while they sleep. A mattress that is not supportive enough will cause excess pressure on the lower back and can leave you with back pain.

    Side and back sleepers may benefit from a medium-soft to medium-firm mattress to help maintain proper spine alignment. A slightly softer mattress will help cradle the pressure points of the hips and the shoulders while providing the support your back needs for all-night comfort.

    Comfort

    Remember to consider the importance of your personal comfort preferences. You should always prioritize a mattress that helps you wake up feeling refreshed and without pain. 

    If you like softer mattresses, stick with a softer mattress. If you prefer a firmer mattress, opt for a firmer model. 

    Value

    The cost and value of a mattress are also important considerations when looking for something new. The price of your mattress shouldn't keep you up at night, but you should still look for a high-quality mattress that will provide lasting comfort and deeper sleep for many years.

    Trial and Return Policy

    When you deal with back pain, the last thing you want is to be stuck with a mattress for the next five to ten years. Look for a mattress with a generous trial and return policy in case you need to reevaluate after a week of testing. 

    At Purple, we offer a 100-night trial period because we understand that it takes time for your body to adjust to life-changing sleep.  One hundred allows you to sleep with no risk, no pressure.

    Tips for Sleeping With Back Pain

    Adjusting your sleeping position to reduce your back pain is easier said than done. However, if you’re suffering from back pain, you can make small tweaks to your sleeping style so you’re less likely to wake up with aches and pains. Here are a few solutions for sleepers of all styles.

    • For back sleepers: According to Mayo Clinic, placing a pillow under your knees when sleeping works to keep your lower back curved and relax your back muscles. 
    • For side sleepers: Keck Medicine of USC recommends tucking a pillow between your knees to keep your spine aligned if you’re a side sleeper. 
    • For stomach sleepers: According to the Hospital for Special Surgery, adding midsection support is key for stomach sleeps, like placing a pillow under your hips or abdomen.  

    Methodology 

    To create our list, we analyzed the top-reviewed mattresses for back pain and weighed them on a variety of factors, including: 

    • Material 
    • Firmness 
    • Price point 
    • Customer reviews 
    • Sleep style 

    From there, we were able to rank the mattresses based on these features. The chart below outlines our picks: 

    Mattresses 

    Best For

    Purple RestorePlus™ Hybrid Mattress 

    Best overall 

    TEMPUR-Adapt® ProAdapt Mattress

    Best for combination sleepers 

    Sleep Number® c2 Smart Bed

    Best for couples

    Saatva Classic Mattress

    Best for back sleepers

    The Winkbed Mattress

    Best for selecting your own firmness 

    Nectar Memory Foam Mattress

    Best for hot sleepers 

    Amerisleep AS2 Mattress

    Best memory foam

    Helix Dusk Mattress

    Best for edge support 

    DreamCloud Hybrid Mattress

    Best for heavier individuals 

    Nolah Evolution 15 Mattress

    Best for tossing and turning 

    Casper Wave Hybrid Mattress™

    Best for side sleepers 

    Avocado Green Mattress

    Best organic

    Cocoon ™Chill Mattress by Sealy

    Best for stomach sleepers 

    Back Pain FAQ

    Still wondering about the role your mattress plays in back pain? We’ve got you covered. Here are a few common questions and answers about choosing a mattress that reduces back pain. 

    What Type of Mattress Is Good for Back Pain?

    A medium-firm mattress is good for back pain, as something too soft may not offer enough support. Soft mattresses aren’t necessarily bad for back pain, but a firmer mattress will give you more support. There is not one type of mattress that will be best for all people experiencing back pain–rather, it’s a myriad of factors involving your sleep preferences and a mattress’ design that will impact common pains and aches.

    Is It Better To Have a Soft or Firm Mattress for Back Pain?

    A firmer mattress is typically better for back pain, but it depends on personal preference and sleeping style. Stomach and back sleepers generally experience more relief from firmer mattresses, while side sleepers typically find relief with softer ones. 

    Medium-firm mattresses are commonly the best pick for sleepers of all styles. Additionally, you may be more comfortable in a softer mattress versus a firmer one, so make sure you’re not abandoning comfort when browsing mattresses.  

    What Is the Best Sleeping Position For Lower Back Pain?

    Back sleeping is the best position for those suffering from back pain, as it’s the best way to keep your spine aligned throughout the night. When lying flat on your back, you keep your hips, shoulders, and head in a more neutral position, which helps to keep your spine stable.

    You can teach yourself how to sleep on your back, but this will take some time and practice. 

    Are Purple Beds Good For Your Back?

    Purple beds are the best mattresses for back pain, as we combine advanced technology with peak comfort so you can sleep well without waking up to the all-too-familiar morning back aches.

    If you’re tired of fighting off back pain in your daily routine, consider testing a Purple mattress and see what our products can do for you.

    About the authors

    April Seifert
    Writer

    April has nearly a decade of writing experience, with 3+ years specializing in sleep content. Her work has been covered by sites like BuzzFeed, Entrepreneur, and Money Under 30. She has an M.A. in Magazine, Newspaper, and Online Journalism from Syracuse University and a B.A. in Communication Studies. As a self-proclaimed expert in all things cozy, she sleeps better at night, knowing her writing helps others sleep in comfort, too.

    Kristen Olson-Turner
    Senior Director of Merchandising, Mattress and Bases

    Kristen Olson-Turner is the Senior Director of mattresses, where she has spent 10+ years understanding customer needs and integrating solutions into Purple products for better sleep and comfort.