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Mattress Firmness and Sleeping Style

July 08, 2020 5 min read

Comfort zone

When purchasing a mattress, certain key considerations like the material, fabric, price and thickness usually figure. However, if your ultimate goal is to ensure you find a comfortable mattress to sleep in, then firmness is generally considered the clincher.

Some people prefer soft mattresses, while others want firmer ones. Although, most people prefer an average mattress that’s just the right firmness (medium-firm).

The thing, however, is that what one would consider the right mattress firmness differs from one person to another. And, it is usually influenced by one’s sleeping style. Mattress manufacturers have experts that classify the level of firmness in every mattress they produce. Ultimately, though, the final decision regarding which mattress will work best for you lies in the level of relaxation and comfort you experience.

Mattress Firmness and Sleep Quality

Most people agree that a comfortable mattress is essential to getting a good night’s sleep. Your level of comfort is directly affected by how plush or firm your mattress is. If a mattress is too soft or firm for your comfort and sleeping style, it can lead you to wake up to various aches and pains next morning. An uncomfortable mattress can also lead to interrupted sleep as you’ll be tossing and turning in your attempt to find the most comfortable position for you.

The right mattress should provide you with the appropriate lumbar support so you don’t end up enjoying the cushy goodness of a soft bed, only to wake up with a major backache the next day. A good mattress will not only help ensure you get enjoyable quality sleep but also provide back support by keeping your spine properly aligned.

Again, to accomplish this, you also need to consider your sleeping style as it indicates how you sleep for the greater part of the night.

Sleeping Style Variations

When it comes to the different sleeping positions or styles, the firmness scale of a mattress can significantly affect one’s level of comfort — whether you’re a side sleeper, back sleeper or a stomach sleeper.

Nature’s Embrace mattresses are made from the finest organic latex material, which is well-known for being comfy and soft, yet supportive and firm.

If you’re currently on the lookout for the most appropriate mattress for your needs, here’s a quick mattress firmness guide for the most common sleeping styles:

Best Mattress for Side Sleepers

For side sleepers, using a mattress that adequately supports the side of the body is important. You also need to ensure that the mattress is soft enough to allow your shoulder and hip to sink into it a little.

To get the most pressure relief for the shoulder area, go for the thickest mattresses with the most layers — which are softer and allow for more pressure relief while the elastic nature of latex rubber keeps the spine aligned. Absent of any other preferences, we highly recommend opting for the Hevean 10 Organic Latex Mattress in the Medium configuration for side sleepers. If you want it a little firmer the Hevean 10 Medium-Firm is also very popular but it may be a little too firm for pure side sleepers.

We typically wouldn't recommend the Classic Series for side sleepers as the they are quite Firm and may not provide enough pressure relief.

More detailed information can be found in our blog post: The Best Mattresses for Side Sleepers

Best Mattress Back Sleepers

People who prefer to lie down on their back need to make sure that their spine is in a position akin to when they are standing. This means that keeping your back in a natural position as much as possible is important. In general, if you're a back sleeper, you should go for a mattress that’s a little firmer. And, finding the best mattress for you should be easier as back sleepers fit the widest range of mattresses.

You don’t need to go with 10-inch options if you want something on the firmer side because thicker mattresses tend to be softer and the best mattresses for back sleepers are usually on the firmer end of the spectrum. Back Sleepers can choose choose any medium-firm, firm or extra-firm mattress, depending on your personal preference.

More information can be found in our blog post: The Best Mattresses for Back Sleepers

Best Mattress for Stomach Sleepers

Just like back sleepers, those who like to sleep on their stomach need to ensure that their back stays in a natural position.

If you belong to this category of sleepers, an extra firm mattress is the best option for stomach sleepers. It can provide the support your upper body needs so it doesn’t sink into the mattress and cause back or neck pain afterwards. Using an extra firm mattress will help keep your spine better aligned in its most natural position. We would recommend any of our Classic Series Mattresses for stomach sleepers or the Hevean mattresses made mostly of Firm layering. Mattress thickness isn't all that important and most stomach sleepers would find the best fit with the 8" models

Want to find out more about stomach sleeping? Check out our blog post: The Best Mattress for Stomach Sleeping

Best Mattress for Combination Sleepers

Combo sleepers tend to be comfortable in a variety of sleeping positions. To strike a balance between finding the best support and the right contour, you want to get a mattress that best suits your predominant sleeping position but is also within the acceptable range of your secondary sleeping positions. A medium-firm mattress tends to fit the widest range of sleeping styles.

More detailed information for combination sleepers can be found here: The Best Mattress for Combination Sleepers.

Mattress-Buying Tips

When you go out shopping for a latex mattress, make a note of the following:

  • The more layers there are in a thicker latex mattress, the softer it becomes. On the other hand, a thinner mattress with fewer layers would be firmer.
  • Whatever type or brand of mattress you choose, you’ll find that the most comfortable mattress for you will help you fall asleep faster. It will also help ensure you sleep through the night easier.
  • In most cases a specific firmness shouldn’t be your ultimate goal. The right mix of comfort and support for your sleeping style is more important as it can help get rid of body aches and pains. You know you’re sleeping in a good mattress when you wake up fresh and reinvigorated as your body didn’t have to strain itself to be comfortable the entire night.
  • Testing a mattress in a showroom or getting detailed specs online won’t give you a complete picture of what your sleeping experience will be in the long term. Therefore, it’s important to check the company’s return or sleep trial policy. Nature’s Embrace Hevean Signature Series comes with a 120-Day Comfort Guarantee. This enables you to change layers until you discover the optimum combination that satisfies the support and comfort level you want.
  • The Sleep Council cautions people to not be fooled by marketing terms like “orthopedic” as these are simply extra firm beds.

Comfort Comes First

Organic Dunlop Latex is a unique material that is both soft and supportive due to the natural elasticity or rubber. This allows you to go with a slightly softer surface feel than you’re used without sacrificing support.  However, in any personal decision, personal preference remains a major deciding factor. Therefore some people prefer firmer or softer mattresses regardless of their sleeping style or material used.

Good thing, though, our organic latex mattresses are versatile enough to satisfy your mattress firmness requirements — whether you’re a side, back, stomach or combination sleeper. When shopping for an organic latex mattress you can simply pick the one that feels best to you as it would also give you the most comfort and pressure relief.


If you’ve any questions regarding mattress firmness, or if you would like to book a mattress fitting, please reach out to us.

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