Best CPAP Mask for Side Sleepers of 2020 (Reviews, & Top 3 Buying Tips)

best cpap mask for side sleepers

More than eight million people in the United States use a CPAP machine. (1)

But how many of them are both side sleepers and wearing a mask that’s actually comfortable? Chances are if you’re reading this, then you’re not one of those few, but there’s hope.

On this page, out of thousands of masks available, we’ve narrowed it down to our top 7 models specifically for side sleepers for 2020. If you’re feeling annoyed, frustrated, or downright depressed with your lack of a great night’s sleep, you need the best CPAP mask for side sleepers.

So, to aid your search in finding the perfect mask for you, start with our top 7 picks at a glance to get a feel for what’s out there.

Quick Comparison of the Top 7 Picks (For Those in a Hurry!)

1. ResMed AirFit P10 (Editor’s Choice) – With a lightweight configuration, an excellent airtight seal, and a host of sizing options, the ResMed AirFit P10 is our overall top CPAP mask for side sleepers.

2. ResMed Swift FX (Top Value) – With a comfortable minimalist design, super-flexible construction, and an affordable price tag, the ResMed Swift FX is our top value pick.

3. Phillips Respironics DreamWear (Top Cheap – But Good!) – A low-profile design makes the Phillips Respironics DreamWear a comfortable option, and the under-the-nose style makes for a barely-there device that is our top cheap—but good—pick.

4. Fisher & Paykel Opus 360 – (Great for Toss-and-turn Sleepers) A swiveling tubing elbow offers flexibility as you change sleep positions on the Fisher & Paykel Opus 360, and its adjustable positioning and stay-in-place straps make this a great option for more mobile side sleepers.

5. Aloha Nasal Pillow Mask – (Ideal for Smaller Faces) A minimal headgear face mask option with a ball-and-swivel joint hose, the Aloha Nasal Pillow mask is flexible for side sleepers, adjusts to suit your nasal passages, and maintains a solid seal throughout the night.

6. Fisher & Paykel Pilairo Q – (Excellent for Sensitive Users) With its lightweight profile and dual headgear options, the Fisher & Paykel Pilairo Q relieves pressure on side sleepers’ faces—making this a great choice for those with sensitive skin.

7. TAP PAP – (A Stable Choice for Teeth-Grinders) A mouthpiece-supported CPAP mask that serves double duty as a mouthguard, the TAP PAP skips the straps yet offers great stability for those who grind their teeth or toss and turn more than usual.

Best CPAP Masks for Side Sleepers

best cpap masks for side sleepers

Using a sleep apnea mask mask might be best for your health. But wearing one can be uncomfortable and stressful.

Fortunately, we’ve rounded up seven of the best CPAP masks for side sleepers. After reading these reviews, you’ll know which product is the best for your needs.

1. ResMed AirFit P10 (Editor’s Choice)

The ResMed AirFit P10 is the #1 best CPAP mask for side sleepers of 2020 because it covers the top three priorities for CPAP users: comfort, ease of use, and a custom fit.

We’ve picked the ResMed AirFit P10 as our recommendation for the best nasal CPAP mask for those who mainly sleep on their sides because it’s so lightweight. This is a highly sought after trait you’ll find with most of our best CPAP masks we review, you might even forget you’re wearing them!

Then, the mask is supremely adjustable, and like many other masks on our list, has his and hers versions available. Various sizes and configurations mean everyone can feel comfortable in their mask. And, you can reap the benefits of using your CPAP machine without waking up in the morning with marks on your face.

Another great feature is the directional exhaust port, which helps direct the air output away from your partner while you’re sleeping. A secure seal helps prevent air leaks, too, a feature that’s helpful for keeping your nights restful rather than wakeful due to escaping air.

Pros

  • The mask maintains a secure seal and prevents leaks.
  • A directional exhaust port keeps the CPAP noise while exhaling, and inhaling to a whisper.
  • The unit is so lightweight; you might forget you’re wearing it.
  • A range of sizing options and his and hers designs ensure the right fit.

Cons

  • There are other more affordable options out there, albeit with fewer performance features.

2. ResMed Swift FX (Top Value)

Thanks to its affordable price and all-around competitive features, the ResMed Swift FX is our top value pick for the best CPAP mask for side sleeping. This mask offers a minimalist design with soft, flexible pillows for the utmost comfort while you sleep.

Whether you experience claustrophobia from full-face masks or simply want a more affordable mask option, the ResMed Swift FX might be the perfect fit.

Soft wraps help keep your headgear from slipping, and no rough edges irritate your face. The adjustable chin strap aims to keep your mouth closed, which can alleviate mild mouth-breathing, just like our #1 best CPAP mask for mouth breathers of this year.

When your sleeping position moves, the mask moves with you. The flexibility ensures an excellent fit for all those who sleep on mainly on their sides. Plus, minimal airflow noise means you can enjoy a quieter night’s rest.

Pros

  • The minimalist design helps you feel freer while wearing the mask.
  • Multi-point adjustments help you find the most comfortable setting.
  • There’s minimal airflow noise during use.

Cons

  • The chin strap aids in reducing mouth-breathing but may not work for all wearers.

3. Phillips Respironics DreamWear (Top Cheap – But Good! – Pick)

With its affordability and essential features, the Phillips Respironics DreamWear mask is our top cheap—but good – pick. Proving that not all CPAP masks need to be pricey to be functional, the Respironics DreamWear mask offers freedom of movement and a minimalist design.

The mask employs a low profile, which is an excellent feature for maintaining your line of sight. Its airflow is also quieter than many alternatives. The quiet operation ensures that you don’t wake your partner (or yourself) while moving around at night.

Plus, this model lacks nasal pillows, making it a great choice for users who don’t like applying devices to their nostrils.

Pros

  • The open-style mask doesn’t block your line of sight.
  • A quiet air output helps maintain a calm sleeping environment.
  • Minimal adjustment is required due to the low-profile design.
  • No nostril pillows; the mask lies over your face rather than sealing on.

Cons

  • Those who are extra-active during their sleep may need to adjust carefully for a good fit all night.

4. Fisher & Paykel Opus 360 – Great for Toss-and-Turn Sleepers

If you don’t always sleep on one side but prefer more freedom of movement, the Fisher & Paykel Opus 360 may offer a great compromise.

Its 360-degree elbow allows you to move almost any way while sleeping and remain connected to your CPAP machine. The tubing extends from the top of the mask, so it won’t coil up under you or tangle around your arms.

The tube can feel a bit stiff, though, which may cause issues if you toss and turn a lot throughout the night. Generally, the swivel feature helps direct the tubing the proper way. So, even as you swap sides or lie on your back occasionally, the swiveling allows the tube to move without you pulling on it. This can mean a more relaxing night’s sleep.

And, the ability to swivel the tubing to watch TV or read, for example, is a helpful feature for your waking hours.

Pros

  • A 360-degree tubing elbow allows for more freedom of movement.
  • The orientation of the tubing means it won’t wind underneath you while sleeping.
  • You can adjust the tubing for a better frontal view as necessary.

Cons

  • The swiveling tube is a bit stiffer than previously reviewed models

5. Aloha Nasal Pillow Mask – Ideal for Smaller Faces

Another flexible headgear option, the Aloha Nasal Pillow Mask has a ball and swivel joint to help keep the tubing out of the way while you sleep. Plus, the side bars on the headgear are flat and smooth. The flat sides are a helpful feature when you’re sleeping on your side with your cheek against the pillow.

With the right adjustment, many users find that the Aloha mask is more comfortable and moves around less than other CPAP masks.

Women, especially, tend to favor the Aloha mask for its airtightness and comfort. Conversely, some men may find the mask a bit too narrow for their liking. You’ll also need to be precise about assembling the mask, too, as the nasal pillows slide onto prongs and can sometimes dislodge.

Pros

  • Depth and angle adjustments for the nasal pillows.
  • The side ‘bars’ are flat, so they’re extra-comfortable for those who sleep on their sides
  • Stays in place exceptionally well—with the proper adjustment.

Cons

  • This model isn’t great for larger face sizes

6. Fisher & Paykel Pilairo Q – Excellent for Sensitive Users

When it comes to a barely-there CPAP mask, the Fisher & Paykel Pilairo Q tops the list.

This ultra-lightweight mask weighs under two ounces (just like some of our top CPAP for stomach sleepers), which helps keep you from feeling closed-in. The light pressure also means this model is a great option for those with pressure-sensitive or otherwise delicate skin.

Multiple headgear modes—both a forehead and around-the-head option—let you choose the fit that’s most comfortable for you. In fact, you have two separate headgear pieces to try out—both come in the box. This is an excellent feature if you have sensitivity on an area of your head or face; the strap options allow you to choose what works for your face.

The nasal pillows are also lightweight and soft, earning rave reviews for their comfort level.

Pros

  • Exceptionally low pressure on users’ faces.
  • Less likely to cause skin sensitivities or leave marks.
  • Multiple headgear options let you find your comfort zone.

Cons

  • May not be as durable as previously reviewed models.

7. TAP PAP – A Stable Choice for Teeth-Grinders

In place of headgear or straps, the TAP PAP CPAP mask uses a mouthpiece for a stay-in-place fit. Without pressure points and seal issues from headgear styles, this nasal pillow mask allows you greater freedom of movement while sleeping or changing sides.

The addition of a mouthpiece can be beneficial for users who typically grind their teeth, too. In fact, the connection between sleep apnea and teeth grinding means many CPAP users wind up needing a mouthguard as well. (2) If that’s the case for you, the TAP PAP might help address both issues.

Since you custom mold the mouthguard before fitting the device, the TAP PAP will fit your unique face perfectly. This helps maintain the mask’s stability throughout the night—no straps or adjustments required. Achieving the right molding is essential, though, so take this step with care if you choose the TAP PAP.

Pros

  • No adjustments are necessary to fit your mask each night.
  • You can custom mold the mouthpiece to fit your face.
  • The mouthpiece style offers great stability when switching sides while sleeping.

Cons

  • Molding the mouthpiece to fit your teeth is an essential and intricate step.

Buyers’ Guide – Top 3 Tips BEFORE You Buy

If you’re still not quite sure how to choose the best CPAP mask for side sleepers for you and your unique sleeping requirements, read on. Check out our sleep experts’ top 3 tips to know before you buy one to ensure your success in getting the right mask for you.

1. Know the Different Types of CPAP Masks for Side Sleepers We Recommend

There are three common types of CPAP masks for those who sleep on their sides: hybrid, nasal masks, and nasal pillow masks. Here’s what you need to know about each option.

Hybrid

A hybrid CPAP mask has both nasal pillows and a mouth covering. This type of CPAP mask is generally lighter weight than a traditional style. The nasal pillows and mouth cushion form a solid seal without blocking your vision.

With a hybrid mask, you won’t have headgear or tubing across your forehead. Instead, the mask centers on your nose and mouth, and you can watch TV or read without obstructions. This type of mask can also help reduce marks and pressure points on your face.

Nasal Masks

Nasal masks typically use full headgear and cover your nose area. Nasal CPAP masks are essentially the “original” type of mask, though modern options have many improvements over the original.

Most nasal CPAP masks use silicone or gel to create a seal around your nose. These can be more comfortable for users who don’t like the feel of nasal pillows against their nostrils.

The right fit is essential with nasal masks, however, to avoid leakage and keep you comfortable. The advantages of nasal masks include:

  • They work for CPAP users with higher settings.
  • They don’t cover your entire face the way a classic full face mask would.
  • Many shapes and sizes are available to suit your face.

Disadvantages of nasal masks include their relative bulk. This mask type can also block your line of sight, so it’s not always possible to read or watch TV while wearing a nasal CPAP mask.

Nasal Pillow Masks

Nasal pillow masks feature “pillows” or pads that seal around a user’s nostrils. You will choose from a range of anatomically shaped pillow sizes, depending on your nostril shape, size, and mask type (whether men’s or women’s sizing).

Experts recommend using the largest pillow size you can comfortably wear. This way, you promote the best airflow from your CPAP machine while sleeping.

A nasal pillow mask typically uses a headgear system for adjusting and securing the mask. However, this style covers less of your face than a traditional nasal mask.

You might prefer a nasal pillow style mask if you want less pressure on your face and minimal contact. The style is also helpful if you prefer to keep your mouth uncovered.

Overall, the advantages of nasal pillow CPAP masks include:

  • The ability to move around.
  • Lightweight construction.
  • Compatibility with facial hair.
  • Lower bulk, so a better field of vision.

Doctors do recommend that CPAP users with higher prescribed settings skip nasal pillow masks and instead opt for a full nasal mask. And, some users experience dry nostrils or even nosebleeds with nasal pillow masks. This is because of the concentration of air entering the nose.

2. Know Your “Pillow Type”

The type of pillow you use can impact how comfortable you feel while wearing a mask for sleep apnea. In general, there are four types of pillows; back sleeper, side sleeper, stomach sleeper, and combo sleeper.

Back Sleeper Pillow

A pillow for back sleepers tends to be medium or medium-soft and offers a bit of head cushioning and spinal support. Your pillow might be “flatter” if you often sleep on your back.

Side Sleeper Pillows

You might have a side sleeper pillow if it features special cutouts for your shoulder or arm, or if it has more support for your neck. If you sleep on your side, having proper side sleeper pillows is critical for maximum comfort.

Stomach Sleeper Pillows

A stomach sleeper pillow tends to be slim but also offers neck and head positioning elements. Stomach sleeper pillows are thin yet firm with contouring features for support.

Combo Sleeper Pillows

Combo sleeper pillow features vary widely, but yours might have cooling properties, adjustable fill, and variable spinal support.

If you flip positions constantly throughout your nightly sleep, going with a combo sleeper pillow is is a great way to help you learn how to sleep with a CPAP mask on.

3. Find the Top Deal for Your Unique Needs

Considering your individual needs is essential for finding the right CPAP mask. The best mask for those who sleep on their sides is one that maintains a solid seal and fits comfortably.

But based on your facial structure, personal preferences, size requirements, and CPAP settings, one mask may work better than another. (3) Fortunately, our list of can’t-miss options includes something for everyone.

What is the Best CPAP Mask for Side Sleepers?

Now that you’ve learned all about the top seven CPAP masks here at Sleep.FM for those who sleep on their side, all that’s left is to find the perfect fit for you. While you’ve read through the pros and cons of each option, if you’re unsure what CPAP mask is the best buy, we recommend the ResMed AirFit P10.

The ResMed AirFit P10 is an excellent CPAP mask for those who sleep on their side because of its lightweight design, customizable fit, and airtight seal. Going with our #1-rated pick can make your CPAP experience much easier and more comfortable. You won’t regret it!

Sources

  1. https://www.forbes.com/sites/danieldambrosio/2018/12/21/healthcare-startup-grows-2805-percent-in-7-years-with-cpap-sanitizer/
  2. https://www.sleepfoundation.org/articles/link-between-sleep-apnea-and-teeth-grinding
  3. https://www.verywellhealth.com/are-severe-sleep-apnea-and-cpap-pressure-correlated-3015267

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