Best Sleeping Pad for Side Sleepers 2021 Reviews

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Updated Aug 27, 2018. Are you a side sleeper looking for a sleeping pad? You’re in the right place!

This year I decided I needed to buy my own equipment. I slept on an air pad last year and it wasn’t the most comfortable which is why I’m so much happier having found the Therm-a-Rest ProLite Plus.

It’s not like sleeping on a real mattress but it’s much more comfortable as a side sleeper. The foam is especially lightweight but still thick and it’s suitable for all seasons because it has an R value of 3.4. Well, as long as it’s not too cold out. 🙂

It compresses very well so it can be packed down but when it’s pulled out it self-inflates back to its original shape quickly and it comes with its own stuff sack.

The best thing about this camping pad has to be the foam. The pad itself is 1.5” thick, and you can get it in several sizes which is great if you’re a woman because you don’t have to carry a bigger pad than necessary.

It’s very comfortable and provides much more support than a standard air pad without having to worry about leaks. The fact that it’s self-inflating is also convenient because it means I don’t have to either carry an air pump or blow it up myself like an air pad.

I also love that it’s suitable for all weather, even when it’s freezing the pad provides enough insulation that you can’t feel the coldness from the ground at all and you can feel a significant difference between it and the floor. Of course, if you’re out when it’s cold, then you’ll have a warm sleeping bag anyway.

I personally toss and turn all night, most nights, so I normally don’t sleep well while camping. Even if you’re on your side you don’t bottom out and you won’t feel the ground at all. It’s covered with a soft microfiber-like fabric which also helps to minimize any “egg crate” feel from the texturing of the foam. The cut out foam means that it’s not so dense and it has a unique Atmos design to add warmth by trapping air between you and the foam as well.

Third, it’s a very light pad since it’s just 1.5″. It can fold down small, but if you leave it like that it doesn’t reinflate properly so it’s a good idea to leave it out as much as possible. It fits easily down into the stuff sack or into a pack and weighs only 1.25lb total. That’s not much different than an air pad and this is much more comfortable.

Therm-a-Rest ProLite Plus

Features & Specifications

  • It has Atmos Cut out Foam which traps air for added warmth.
  • The dimensions of the Women’s regular are 1.8x20x66.
  • It comes in two different red colors.
  • It’s very light and weighs only 1.25lb.
  • It’s self-inflating so you don’t need to blow or bring a pump.
  • Foam is quiet so even if you turn over you won’t rustle and wake your camp mates.
  • Squeezes really small so you can pack it into a pack.
  • Comes with its own stuff-bag for convenient storage.
  • It’s suitable for 4 seasons camping.
  • It’s made of foam so it won’t deflate or get a hole.
  • It’s 1.5” thick and suitable for side sleepers.

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What Customers are Saying

This is so light, it really does squeeze down amazingly small and weighing in at just over a pound means you really don’t notice the weight. It’s very packable and very convenient at this size.

The downside to this sleeping pad is that it’s only 20” wide, and if you’re a bigger or taller person the longest size is only 74” so it can be small, especially if you roll a bit when sleeping and since this is a women’s only model it’s probably not suited for guys or wide shoulders.

However, if you’re a bigger person then there are other designs out there suited for that and this one is more of a standard size which is fine for the average person like me.

I really can’t see anything wrong with this sleeping pad which is why I highly recommend it, especially if you’re doing a through hike or one of the trails and want to be comfortable.

Who Should Buy This Product

Anyone who hikes, treks, or camps and wants comfort. It’s really suited for just about everything other than ultralight because it protects from cold and hard ground anywhere and doesn’t weigh much. It’s not even that expensive so there’s no excuse not to get this one, especially if you think of how many times you’re going to have to replace an air pad because of a leak.

I think this is ideal for most women because the dimensions are quite small but a smaller guy would fit too, this also means you’re not going to carry excess weight. This is also definitely great if you’re a side sleeper because of the foam.

Who Shouldn’t Buy This Product

If you’re bigger or taller this simply won’t work. The pad itself is quite small in dimensions and if you tend to move around while you sleep you’ll also find you easily roll off of it because it’s only 20” wide.

The dimensions are small so they’re probably not suited for most men either (it’s intended for women anyway). If you’re ultralight camping you’re probably skipping a pad anyway since this is an extra pound.

Bringing a sleeping pad on a backpacking trip is a must. We recommend this sleeping pad here.

Frequently Asked Questions

  • Is the Small size for kids?

The small size is only 47” long so it will be too short for most adults and better suited for kids.

  • How thick is it?

1.5” – So it’s on the thinner side so it’ll be light.

  • Is this designed for women?

Yes. This is a shorter and narrower design specifically for women.

  • What colors does it come in?

This comes in Cayenne Red (dark) or Poppy red only

  • What is the insulation?

It is 3.4R rated.

  • Does this work for side sleepers?

It’s perfect for side sleeping and you won’t bottom out if you are average sized.

Conclusion: Therm-A-Rest Pro Lite:

A great choice for Side Sleepers

The Therm-a-Rest ProLite Plus is my new camping buddy for sure. If I sleep outdoors this is definitely going to be coming with me because it’s so comfortable. I love how light it is and how I don’t have to inflate it myself. It’s just super convenient.

Carrying a heavy sleeping pad doesn’t have to be the norm. Check out our ultra light sleeping pad here. 

Traveling with 2 people? Read about our favorite 2 person sleeping bag.

Meet the Author

'Mountain Man' John

'Mountain Man' John is a Survival and Preparedness enthusiast who loves everything outdoors. He has a passion for learning anything and everything to help sustain his and his families way of life post SHTF. He frequently shares his knowledge on a variety of topics from his hands on DIY projects, learning new skills such as hunting and trapping along with reviews on his Survival related purchases - Prepping has been in his family for generations, it's in his blood.