The 2 Best Pillows to Keep You Sleeping on Your Back
Training yourself to sleep on your back is one of the best decisions you’ll ever make to prevent and get rid of your back and neck pain.
One of the simplest ways to do that is to get a pillow to keep you from rolling over, which will prevent you from rolling over or changing your sleeping position throughout the night.
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In this post, you’ll find the benefits of back sleeping, why it’s hard to train yourself to sleep on your back and the 2 best pillows for back sleep training in 2022.
👉In a Hurry?
- Why Is it So Hard to Sleep on Your Back?
- How to Train Yourself to Sleep on Your Back
- The Top 2 Pillows to Keep You on Your Back
- Benefits of Sleeping on Your Back
- What is the Right Way to Sleep on Your Back?
- What are the Best Mattress Toppers for Sleeping on the Back?
Why Is it So Hard to Sleep on Your Back?
Less than 15% of people in the modern world sleep on their backs. The 3 main reasons most people can’t sleep on their back are that it’s uncomfortable, the back hurts more when they lie flat, and that back sleeping exacerbates snoring.
But, no matter how uncomfortable back sleeping is for you, don’t ignore the obvious health benefits of sleeping on your back (below)!
RELATED: The best pillows for neck pain (side sleepers)
How to Train Yourself to Sleep on Your Back
One of the most effective ways to fall asleep on your back (and stay in that position) is using a special pillow to train you to sleep on your back.
A back sleep training pillow is the only thing that has helped me finally start sleeping on my back, after months of trying everything (other than tying myself to the bed).
👉 RELATED: What’s the Best TempurPedic pillow for back sleepers?
The Top 2 Pillows to Keep You on Your Back
Through my extensive research, I’ve found the 2 best pillows to help you sleep on your back – the only pillows to stop you from rolling and your head from turning to the side:
1. YourFacePillow Top Pick
- Size: 12 x 12 x 6 inches
- Weight: 1.5 pounds
- Filling – 100% polyurethane foam
- Cover – 20% polyester/80% cotton
The YourFacePillow is the highest-rated back sleeping and anti-wrinkle pillow on Amazon, and our #1 recommendation for the best pillow to train you to back sleeping.
As you can see in the image, it’s a memory foam pillow (soft, yet supportive) with a hypo-allergenic inner cover and a removable and washable Velour outer cover.
This fairly flat and adaptable pillow makes it almost impossible to turn on your side and stomach when you sleep, and the head area confirms to your neck height perfectly.
The sides of the pillow are firm enough and high enough to rest your temple against them while keeping your head from falling to the side.
What we liked most about this pillow is the excellent customer service, which begins with an email you get (from the company CEO) once your pillow is delivered, and continues with real integrity and caring about customers, no matter what problem they encounter.
- Soft yet supportive, fairly flat, and adaptable pillow – perfect for back sleeping
- Totally conforms to your head, allows chin alignment
- Materials are comfortable and pleasant
- Forces back sleeping effectively
- Can prevent neck pain
- Excellent customer service
- Pillow can get hot. Can be solved with a satin pillowcase
- Takes a few days to get used to
📢 Note: You can purchase a silk or satin case that fits this pillow HERE.
Make sure to use this pillow along with a leg elevation pillow (2 recommendations below) to prevent your spine from pulling out of alignment when you sleep!
2. Back to Beauty Head Cradle – Runner Up
- Size: 15.2 x 5.5 x 12 inches
- Weight: 1.85 pounds
- Filling – hypoallergenic down-alternative
- Cover – Polyester
Anti-wrinkle pillows, like the Back to Beauty pillow, are the best pillows to help you sleep on your back, here’s why:
These pillows are made to prevent you from sleeping on your side or stomach, so you won’t get those sleeping wrinkles you see in the morning after side sleeping.
The Back to Beauty pillow cradles your head and the crescents prevent you from turning to any side while you sleep.
(To make sure your body “plays along” – place a big pillow under your knees)
It’s small and thin (but can be placed on another thin pillow) and is made with no foam – only hypoallergenic down-alternative fiber and satin/cotton pillowcases.
If you like a more “open” support, this pillow can be flipped to the other – “hammock head” side, as you can see below:
The Beauty Back pillow includes “comfort zone” directions, back-sleeping training tips, and even email support.
For most users, it took a few days to get used to, but after that – sleeping on their back was achieved – comfortably. This pillow has high ratings on Amazon.
The crescents measurements (top to bottom of the pillow): 5.5 inches high and the largest distance between the center of the crescents measures approximately 7 inches, with a top distance of 3 inches, and a bottom distance of 6.5.
- Prevents side and stomach sleeping efficiently
- Supports the neck well
- Comes with both cotton and a satin pillowcase
- Works great in a recliner or as a travel pillow
- Can be flipped over to the “hammock” side if the crescents for a more open support
- Prevents sleeping wrinkles on your face and chest, reduces under-eye puffiness and dark circles
✅ Price – best price on Amazon
- Takes a few days to get used to
- Smaller than the average pillow (but great for travel)
Benefits of Sleeping on Your Back
The back sleeping position is considered the healthiest sleep posture and is recommended by most doctors and sleep experts. Here’s why:
1. Back and neck pain relief – sleeping this way allows for your head, neck, and spine to maintain a neutral position.
Most of us have developed a forward head posture due to sitting and looking at a computer all day, so resetting with a neutral spine position at night can prevent back and neck pain caused by it.
👉 RELATED: The Best Cervical Traction pillows
2. Joint pain relief and prevention – back sleeping takes the pressure off your joints. Side sleeping can be rough on your knees and hips.
3. Acid Reflux relief – studies have found that a back sleeping posture (with your head slightly elevated) keeps your stomach below your esophagus, which makes acid less likely to come up while you sleep.
4. Tension headaches relief
5. Sleep wrinkles, puffy eyes, and acne prevention – back sleeping is known to be best for your skin. Sleeping on your side or stomach with your head smushed against a pillow is a surefire way to develop sleep wrinkles – that stay.
Back sleeping will also help you wake up with less puffiness under your eyes, and even help prevent acne breakouts and clogged pores.
What is the Right Way to Sleep on Your Back?
According to research, it is very important to keep your spine supported and aligned when you sleep on your back. The easiest way to achieve this is to use a wedge pillow under your knees to keep your spine in a neutral position. This pillow needs to be high enough and firm enough, like the example below:
Place a pillow under your knees to maintain proper alignment of your back. This pillow has to be high enough and firm enough. Here’s another good option:
What are the Best Mattress Toppers for Sleeping on the Back?
Is your mattress keeping you from sleeping on your back all night?
Sleeping on your back is harder when you have a “wimpy” mattress that your body sinks into every night. It can contribute to lower back pain too.
Back sleeping requires adequate support of a firm mattress, which doesn’t have to be extremely hard.
If your mattress doesn’t fit this description, you can get a high-quality mattress topper, instead of a whole new mattress (which is very expensive) – for less than $100.
I have no doubt that using one of these 2 great pillows will help you start sleeping on your back in the next few days.
And if you can prevent sleeping wrinkles, eye puffiness, and acne at the same time – all the better.
It’s important to note that persistence is key when you “coach” yourself to back sleeping.
At first, you’ll have to resist the urge to turn on your side or stomach, but if you stick with it, you’ll find yourself sleeping on your back for most of the night – if not all of it – comfortably.
👉 If you find it too difficult to sleep on your back – the next healthiest option is side sleeping with a full body pillow.
Our #1 recommendation for a back positioning pillow is the YourFacePillow, which combines both effectiveness and comfort, and is well worth its price.
To your health and happiness,
The Back Pain Relief Products Team
Bashir Ahmad Khan, et al, Effect of Bed Head Elevation During Sleep in Symptomatic Patients of Nocturnal Gastroesophageal Reflux, J Gastroenterol Hepatol. 2012;27(6):1078-1082.
Arakelyan, Hayk. (2020). Sleeping Position and Back Pain.