Hot sleepers know the effects of night sweats. Sleeping with heavy fabrics may be the cause, or other factors such as hormonal changes, metabolism, medication side effects, and even sleep apnea could be at play.
But hot sleep doesn’t have to be your normal. A cooling pillow or mattress may help regulate body temperature, putting you on the path toward deeper sleep. We’ve gathered some recommendations verified by our integrity team.
Pillows for Hot SleepersView All
A pillow won’t reverse health concerns, like hormonal changes, that cause hot sleep, but a cooling pillow may help regulate body temperature and manage this side effect.
A study from 2003 found that sleeping with a cooling pillow decreased whole-body sweat rate. Make sure to find one with the right height and comfort for your sleep position.
Browse Healthline’s picks for the best cooling pillows that may help you sleep comfortably.
Beautyrest Black Pillow
Starting at $20.90
The Beautyrest Black Pillow is a hypoallergenic down-alternative option with thick fill that offers contouring support for proper head and neck alignment. A 2-inch gusset helps the pillow maintain its shape and makes it particularly appropriate for back sleepers, but it’ll work for side sleepers, too.
Coop Home Goods Original Pillow
Starting at $63.99
The Original by Coop Home Goods was the brand’s first premium adjustable pillow, and its cushy, supportive firmness works for just about every kind of sleeper. Adjust the hypoallergenic, nontoxic fill — a blend of new, cross-cut memory foam and microfiber — to make it just right.
Saatva Latex Pillow
Starting at $155.00
Saatva’s Latex Pillow is made with a natural latex core for buoyant, balanced support and hotel-quality comfort. It’s wonderfully soft, but dense and flat enough at 8 inches in height to comfortably accommodate stomach and side sleepers. The pillow is sold in queen and king sizes.
Mattresses for Hot SleepersView All
Hot sleepers prone to night sweats or experiencing hot flashes may benefit from a mattress with cooling effects.
Aside from lowering the temperature in your room to minimize heat exposure, which research shows decreases the likeliness of deep and REM sleep, a mattress with cooling technology may help regulate your body temperature and prevent night sweats.
Explore cooling mattresses that may help you achieve more comfortable sleep.
Beautyrest Black Mattress
Starting at $2249.00
The Beautyrest Black has a reputation for indulgent, restorative sleep. With optional upgrades for cooling and comfort, the Beautyrest Black is designed with sophisticated pressure relief, advanced cooling technology, and support. Plus, Beautyrest only uses CertiPUR-US certified foams.
Beautyrest Harmony Lux Hybrid Mattress
Starting at $1399.00
The Beautyrest Harmony Lux Hybrid is made with sustainable technologies. A firm feel is particularly supportive for back and stomach sleepers, with a coiled design that promotes all-night comfort. Optional cooling and comfort upgrades are available for enhanced features.
Brooklyn Bedding Aurora Mattress
Starting at $999.00
The Brooklyn Bedding Aurora Hybrid is infused with cooling gel beads that liquefy or solidify to maintain a constant sleep temperature for more comfortable nights. This hybrid mattress also blends a patented foam with individual coils, and it’s available in a choice of three firmness levels.
Frequently Asked Questions
Several factors that could explain why you overheat while sleeping:
Your room temperature may be too hot for you to sleep comfortably.
Your bedding or pajamas might be too thick or made of fabric that traps heat.
Exercising or drinking caffeine too close to bedtime can increase your body temperature and make it difficult to fall asleep.
Partners or pets in the bed can increase combined body temperature under the covers and in the room.
Certain medications can raise your body temperature.
Hormonal imbalances can lead to night sweats or hot flashes.
Potential illnesses can raise body temperature and cause night sweats.
Here are a couple of solutions that might help you cool down when sleeping:
Lower your room’s temperature by opening a window, turning on a fan, or moving your mattress to the floor.
Use thinner, more breathable bedding made of cotton, linen, or bamboo to trap less heat.
Try not to exercise or drink caffeine close to bedtime.
Consider using a separate blanket if you sleep with a partner or pet.
Consult with your doctor about your current medications, possible hormonal imbalances, or potential illnesses.
Inside the layers of most cooling mattresses are metal springs and coils designed to help air flow better and keep the top layer cool. Some may have gel infused within them, which may help naturally trap body and room heat.
When choosing a cooling mattress, consider the following:
Firmness and sleeping position: Your sleeping position (side, back, stomach) might determine if you want a firmer or softer mattress, which may help provide more or less spinal support.
Mattress materials: Cooling technology such as air chambers, springs, metal particles, or gel beads may help draw heat away from your body and regulate body temperature.
Manufacturer: Some mattress manufacturers take extra precautions to make sure their mattresses are safe for you to sleep on. To ensure this, look for a CertiPUR-US certification, which tests the mattress for any harmful chemicals like formaldehyde, and substances like mercury, lead, and other heavy metals.
Cooling pillows work in a few ways. Some are designed to absorb and remove heat. Others are made to wick away sweat or increase airflow.
When choosing a cooling pillow, consider the materials and any cooling technology it might have. Some pillows have external gel layers, or cooling fabrics, which are designed to reduce your body heat and cool you down.
Your sleeping position might also determine your pillow firmness. Stomach sleepers might prefer a softer pillow, whereas back and side sleepers may want a firmer material like memory foam.
If you sweat a lot during sleep, you may want to make sure your pillow is machine-washable or comes with a washable pillow cover.
While it’s completely normal to sweat when sleeping, there are some instances when you may sweat excessively during sleep, or you may experience night sweats.
Some instances are caused by medical conditions such as menopause, HIV, cancers like leukemia, or anxiety disorders. In other cases, medication such as antidepressants, hormone treatments, or opioids, and consuming too much caffeine or alcohol have been known to cause night sweats as well.
Before you fall asleep, your body produces a hormone called melatonin, which lowers your body’s core temperature needed for rest. A hot room or body disrupts the melatonin creation process — making it harder for you to sleep in the long run.
Read More from our Sleep Experts
Medically reviewed by Raj Dasgupta, MD - Written by Daniel Yetman on May 7, 2021
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Medically reviewed by Raj Dasgupta, MD - Written by Lauren Sharkey on May 21, 2021
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7 Best Cooling Pillows
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