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Best Mattresses of 2019


The experts at Mattress Advisor tested over 120 beds in our Mattress Lab, including memory foam, hybrid, latex and innerspring mattresses. Read on to see the 10 highest-rated mattresses of 2019.


By Alesandra Woolley | Last Updated: June 11, 2019

With so many mattress brands claiming to have the “best mattress,” it can feel impossible to know where to start your search for a new bed. Whether you’re set on a bed-in-a-box mattress or prefer to buy from a traditional mattress store, there are thousands of options to choose from.

Our expert team tested over 120 different beds including memory foam, latex, hybrid, innerspring and pillow top mattresses to bring you the most comfortable mattresses for every sleeping position and price point. Use this guide to save you time, money and frustration when shopping for your next mattress.

How We Chose The Best Mattresses

At Mattress Advisor, we personally test every mattress that's reviewed in our Mattress Lab using a 14-point testing procedure. Here's a look at the work that went into selecting the top 10 mattresses that you see in this guide.

120+

Mattresses tested and compared

1,200+

Hours spent testing products

12

Experts and specialists consulted

2,500+

Customer reviews analyzed


Best Mattresses of 2019

What’s the best mattress to buy in 2019? We ranked the top 10 beds here. For more information on our highest-rated mattresses and why we think they’re great, keep reading.

1. Best Overall
Leesa Hybrid
2. Best Value
Nectar
3. Best Luxury
Saatva
4. Best for Side Sleepers
Leesa
5. Best for Back Pain
Level Sleep
6. Best for Pressure Relief
Puffy Lux
7. Best for Couples
Helix Midnight LUXE
8. Best for People Who Sleep Hot
Brooklyn Aurora
9. Best for Heavy People
Big Fig
10. Best Eco-Friendly Mattress
Awara

Best Mattresses Detailed

The Leesa Hybrid (Sapira)

Best Overall
  • Luxury hybrid mattress made with pocket springs and foam
  • Responsive sleep surface that reacts to your body as you move and change positions
  • Superior motion isolation and edge support

This mattress is amazing!"

Jenny H.
Customer Rating
4.5 / 5
MA Score
9.4 / 10
Firmness

Medium-firm - firm: 7/10

Trial Period

100 days

Why we love it

It’s hard to fit the Leesa Hybrid (formerly known as the Sapira) into any one particular category because it’s good at a lot of things. As one of our highest-rated mattress, we find ourselves recommending the Leesa Hybrid to all types of sleepers. The main reason is because of its impeccable responsiveness and pressure relief.

No matter what position you sleep in, the Leesa Hybrid will adjust your body’s position and provide the right amount of support and pressure relief in the areas you need it most. Think of it as a cushion that pushes back on areas of high pressure, like your hips and shoulders. The individually pocketed coils inside the Leesa Hybrid provide additional support, freedom of movement, and durability. This is the perfect recipe for deep, restorative sleep that many people only dream about.

Who it’s good for

While Leesa Hybrid wins the award for “best overall” mattress, it’s particularly good for:

  • Couples: Leesa Hybrid does a good job of keeping motion transfer at a minimum so you won’t be disturbed by your partner.
  • People with back pain: Its high performance in pressure relief and spine alignment make it ideal for relieving back and joint pain while you sleep.
  • People who sleep hot: Leesa Hybrid is designed to promote airflow so your body heat doesn’t get trapped inside its layers.

Click the link above to get an exclusive Mattress Advisor discount.

Read our full Leesa Hybrid review here


 

Nectar

Best Value
  • The Nectar mattress sleeps cool, provides great pressure relief and won’t put a dent in your wallet
  • For the price, you’re still getting a good quality mattress that’s designed to last
  • Nectar also offers one of the industry’s best return policy and “Forever Warranty”

This mattress has made a difference in the way I sleep."

Paul H.
Customer Rating
4.8 / 5
MA Score
8.7 / 10
Firmness

Medium firm: 5.5-6/10

Trial Period

365 days

Why we love it

There are a few things that immediately set Nectar apart from other mattresses:

  • It has one of the longest trial periods in the industry (a full year!)
  • Its warranty is valid for as long as you own the mattress
  • It won’t put a dent in your budget

Nectar’s gel memory foam surface provides great pressure relief and motion isolation. It will give you more of a “hugging” feel, which is ideal for people who don’t move around a lot throughout the night. As an added bonus, Nectar’s proprietary cover is specifically designed to keep out dust mites!

Click the link above to get an exclusive Mattress Advisor discount.

Read our full Nectar review here


 

Saatva

Best Luxury Mattress
  • Customizable mattress made with quality materials and eco-friendly
  • Provides great edge support, lumbar support and pressure relief
  • Exceptional customer service and free white-glove delivery

Believe me, this mattress is as good or better than they advertise it to be."

N Malenke
Customer Rating
4.8 / 5
MA Score
8.7 / 10
Firmness

Available in plush soft: 3/10; luxury firm: 5.5-6.5/10; and firm: 8/10

Trial Period

120 days

Why we love it

The Saatva mattress will make you feel like you’re sleeping in a 5-star hotel. It’s made with layers of coil-on-coil construction that sit below memory foam and a plush euro pillow-top. The Saatva mattress is handcrafted in independent, American factories using high-quality materials like organic cotton, eco-friendly foams and recycled steel rod coil units.

Saatva’s superior customer service will also make you feel like royalty. The company offers free in-home set-up for your new mattress and free removal of your old mattress to help make the transition to your new mattress easier. You also won’t have to lift a finger!

In addition to the luxury feel, Saatva also offers exceptional spine alignment to promote healthy and restorative sleep. If you tend to move around throughout the night, Saatva will support your movements no matter what position you sleep in. The best part is that a Saatva mattress is built to last. It’s one of the most durable mattresses on the market, meaning you’ll reap these benefits for years to come.

Read our full Saatva review here


 

Leesa

Best for Side Sleepers
  • An excellent choice for side sleepers due to its pressure relieving properties and spine support
  • Responsive mattress that adjusts to your body movements throughout the night
  • Contours your body in the areas that need it most, without trapping heat

My only regret is not buying this bed earlier."

Erin S.
Customer Rating
4.8 / 5
MA Score
9.3 / 10
Firmness

Medium firm: 6/10

Trial Period

100 days

Why we love it

If you’re a side sleeper, it’s important to look for a mattress that will evenly distribute your body weight and support your pressure points – particularly in areas of high pressure like your hips, shoulders and knees. The Leesa mattress is our top pick for side sleepers because of its excellent contouring properties that help relieve this type of pressure.

The Leesa also scored very well in our spine alignment test – meaning this mattress will help keep your spine in a straight line while sleeping on your side.

Another area that Leesa scored highly in during our testing is responsiveness. This means that no matter what position you sleep in, Leesa will provide the support you need. Since side sleepers tend to change positions throughout the night more than other positions, this is a favorable trait when looking for the best mattress for side sleepers.

Click the link above to get an exclusive Mattress Advisor discount.

Read our full Leesa review here


 

Level Sleep

Best for Back Pain
  • Recommended by doctors and chiropractors for people who suffer from back pain
  • Participants in Level Sleep’s clinical trial reported a 54% reduction in morning stiffness
  • Its patented TriSupport™ technology offers optimal lumbar support and pressure relief on shoulder and hip zones

The varied support in the mattress lends itself to a pain-free, relaxed sleep."

Barbara G.
Customer Rating
4.5 / 5
MA Score
8.5 / 10
Firmness

TriZone Firmness

Trial Period

365 days

Why we love it

The Level Sleep TriSupport foam mattress is our top pick for mattresses that help with back pain. It was designed to provide different levels of support in the places that need it most. For example, your shoulders and hips require a different level of pressure relief than your torso does, and Level Sleep’s foam system supports that. This level of customized support helps to keep your body weight evenly distributed and your spine appropriately aligned. These factors play a big role in helping to alleviate back pain while you sleep.

We also appreciate and admire Level Sleep’s dedication to offering restorative, healthy sleep. The company has been active in sleep research for more than 15 years and has even conducted its own Institutional Review Board (IRB)-approved sleep study which found that subjects who slept on the Level Sleep mattress experienced a 54% reduction in morning stiffness and a 56% reduction of pain. It’s also been recommended by doctors and chiropractors.

Click the link above to get an exclusive discount on the Level Sleep mattress.

Read our full Level Sleep review here


 

Puffy Lux

Best for Pressure Relief
  • Puffy Lux is Puffy’s premier mattress model made with patent-pending Cooling Cloud Foam and the Puffy Cloud Cover
  • The Puffy Lux’s Cooling Cloud & Plush Cloud Foam work in tandem to melt the stress and strain from your body’s pressure points

Waking up in the morning is an overall soothing experience."

Courtney
Customer Rating
5 / 5
MA Score
9.2 / 10
Firmness

Medium-soft to medium: 5.5 - 7

Trial Period

101 days

Why we love it

The Puffy Lux mattress is a plush, yet supportive luxury foam mattress that is slightly soft on the top, but firm enough to provide spine alignment and pressure relief. What sets the Lux mattress apart if an adaptive Dual Cloud layer that contours your body while you’re sleeping.

Puffy’s gel-infused memory foam uses convection and conduction technology to disperse heat away from your body, increasing airflow 8x more than standard foam mattresses.

Click the link above to get an exclusive Mattress Advisor discount.

Read our full Puffy Lux review here


 

Helix Midnight LUXE

Best for Couples
  • Premium hybrid mattress made with exceptional cooling technology and zoned-lumbar support that aides in spine alignment
  • The body zoning support offered by the Helix Midnight LUXE cradles your shoulders and provides added support around your hips to keep your body weight evenly distributed
  • Made with quilted pillow top with Ultra-Cool Cover technology, and is 4” taller than standard Helix mattresses

The support is perfect for both of us."

Ian
Customer Rating
4.5 / 5
MA Score
8.9 / 10
Firmness

Medium firm: 6/10

Trial Period

100 days

Why we love it

The Helix Midnight LUXE is a perfect option for couples who might want different things in a mattress. It’s the ideal firmness (right in the middle) and is designed with zoned lumbar coils that provide the right level of support and cradling at different parts of your body. So no matter your body type, you can find comfort on the Midnight LUXE.

The Helix Might LUXE is also made with premium, American materials and is designed to promote airflow to keep you cool – an important factor if you’re sharing the bed with someone. Finally, the memory foam layers toward the top of the mattress reduce motion transfer, so if your sleeping partner moves, you won’t be disturbed.

Read our full Helix Midnight LUXE review here


 

Brooklyn Aurora

Best Cooling Mattress
  • Brooklyn Bedding’s patented Energex™ foam marries the bounce of latex with the pressure relief of memory foam – all in an open cell construction foam that promotes superior breathability and contouring properties.
  • The top layer is also made with TitanCool™, a water-based surface infusion that draws excess heat away from your body.

The surface is cool to the touch."

Brian N.
Customer Rating
4.4 / 5
MA Score
8.9 / 10
Firmness

Available in soft (3/10), medium (5/10) or firm (7/10)

Trial Period

120 days

Why we love it

The Brooklyn Aurora mattress is one of the coolest mattresses we have ever had in the Mattress Lab – temperature wise, and otherwise. Even weeks after unboxing this mattress, it was still cool to the touch.

Its hybrid construction of cooling foams and coil allows for superior airflow and breathability. The top layer even works to actively draw heat away from your body while you sleep.

Click the link above to get an exclusive Mattress Advisor discount.

Read our full Brooklyn Aurora review here


 

Big Fig

Best for Heavy People
  • Big Fig is designed to meet the needs of sleepers with a bigger figure. It can support up to 1,000 lbs. of weight for couples or up to 500 lbs. for a single sleeper.
  • You will receive a custom-made foundation with the purchase of any Big Fig mattress that is designed to support larger amounts of weight.
  • The top layer of the Big Fig is treated with an innovative ThermoGel which converts moisture from perspiration into a refrigerant, immediately cooling the surface.

This is truly the best mattress I’ve come across."

Rain
Customer Rating
4.5 / 5
MA Score
8.8 / 10
Firmness

Medium firm

Trial Period

120 days

Why we love it

The Big Fig was carefully designed to support people with bigger figures. It does a great job of providing pressure relief and supporting heavier parts of the body where it’s needed most.

Heavier sleepers claim that they don’t sink into this mattress like they do with others. The hybrid construction, durable materials and sturdy foundation help with this. The top layer of the Big Fig will also promote a cooler night’s sleep.

Read our full Big Fig review here


 

Awara

Best Eco-Friendly
  • Premium hybrid mattress made with sustainably sourced latex, wool, and cotton.
  • Pairing latex with 5-zoned pocket coils creates the perfect combination for support and contouring of the natural curvatures of the body.

After sleeping on Awara for the past few months, we’ve both felt much more energetic during the day and like we are 10 years younger."

Peter S.
Customer Rating
4.8 / 5
MA Score
8.8 / 10
Firmness

Medium-firm: 7/10

Trial Period

365 nights

Why we love it

The Awara mattress is newer to the market but is quickly becoming a fan favorite with its eco-friendly features and a competitive price point. It’s constructed with premium 100% organic Dunlop latex that is GOLS certified and 5-zoned pocket-coils to create the perfect blend of support and contour. The interior of the mattress has two core layers topped with an all-natural cotton and wool cover.

With the Awara, you can rest assured that you’re sleeping on quality materials that will last you years to come.

Read our full Awara review here


Why Trust Mattress Advisor?

  • Our team conducted over 1,200 hours of product testing on hundreds of different mattress brands to select the best brands for our readers
  • We used the same 6-point testing procedure and 8-point evaluation in our Mattress Lab for every single mattress
  • Our scores incorporate human performance tests, material evaluation, ease of purchase/return, customer service and brand integrity, making it the most comprehensive scoring system in the industry

Why you need a new mattress

The general rule is that you should change your mattress every 7-10 years. Unfortunately, there’s not an alarm that goes off letting you know it’s time for an upgrade, but if you’re not sleeping well and haven’t hit the 7-year mark, it’s time to start shopping.

If you’ve had your mattress for more than 5 years, it’s a good idea to pay closer attention to its overall condition. Take note of how well you’re sleeping, if you’re waking up feeling groggy or achy or if you feel like you’re sinking into the mattress too much. These could be indications that your mattress is losing its shape.

Here’s some information to help you decide if it’s time for a new mattress depending on the type of mattress you have.

The Average Lifespan of a Mattress by Type
Mattress Type Average Lifespan Notes
Innerspring 7-8 years

Even if you’ve flipped and rotated your innerspring mattress regularly, the core is still made of metal wire, which tends to sag and lose its form over time.

Foam / Memory Foam Up to 10 years

While this material is generally better at holding its shape, it still doesn’t last forever. It can last up to 10 years if you’re diligent about rotating it and keeping it clean.

Latex Up to 15 years

Latex mattresses tend to have the most longevity. A good quality latex mattress can last up to 15 years because of its durable makeup.

Of course, the average lifespan of a mattress depends on factors beyond just the type of mattress you have – like how often you use it, the kind of sleeper you are, your body weight, if you have children jumping around on it often and if you share your bed with your pets.

And we hate to break it to you, but if you’ve had your mattress for more than 5 years, there are most definitely dust mites, bacteria, and other microorganisms that have crept their way into your mattress layers – no matter how clean you think you are. (Fun fact: the average person sweats out half a pint of perspiration every night. Gross, we know.)

Here are some other signs that it might be time for a new mattress:

  • You’re in pain when you wake up
  • You regularly wake up feeling groggy or achy
  • You tend to sleep better in a hotel room or somewhere other than your own bed
  • Your mattress is feeling a little saggy or lumpy
  • You feel like you’re sinking too deeply into your mattress
  • You wake up with numbness in your limbs
  • You find yourself tossing and turning in the middle of the night
  • You can feel when your sleeping partner makes even the slightest movement on the other side of the bed

Even though a new mattress might seem like a significant investment, getting quality, restorative sleep is critical to your health. And in some cases, you’ve simply outgrown your bed. David Brummett, VP of Merchandising for Mattress Firm puts it like this:

“Over the course of 8 years, a lot of life moments can happen. Just because your bed was perfect at the start of college does not mean it will still be the right bed for you 8 years later. While a mattress can be a lofty investment, your sleep and health are definitely worth the spend in the long run.”


The difference between foam, hybrid, latex and innerspring mattresses

Now that you’ve decided it’s time for a new, upgraded, less lumpy, better smelling mattress, the next step is figuring out what type of mattress you should get.

There’s endless research out there on different mattress materials and what they’re good for, but we’ve simplified what you really need to know about the most popular types of mattresses available.

Foam / Memory Foam

  • Overall customer satisfaction: 80%
  • Average price range: $675 – $1,000

Foam and memory foam mattresses make up the majority of online mattresses available. These are typically a medium on the firmness scale and tend to be better for people with back pain as it helps with lumbar support, pressure relief and body contouring. It’s also great for motion transfer (if your partner moves around a lot, you won’t feel it).

Memory foam will be more contouring, meaning it will hug your body more than other mattresses will and won’t provide as much bounce or freedom of movement. So if don’t typically move around a lot throughout the night, memory foam might be a good option for you. It’s also worth noting that many of the “foam” mattresses you see today are not purely memory foam but a foam blend made with other materials.

Because of the hug that memory foam provides, this type of mattress has been known to sleep hot. However, Helen Sullivan, spokesperson for CertiPUR-US, advises that this issue has largely been alleviated with new foam technology:

“When these foams first became popular, some said they were warmer to sleep on. However, technological advances in foam production have largely eliminated these problems by using different foam formulations, and in some cases, special cool foams, cooling gel foam, etc.”

If you’re shopping for a foam mattress, you’ll want to pay close attention to what the foams are made of. Look for mattresses that use CertiPUR-US® certified foams. This means that the foam is made without formaldehyde, PBDEs, TDCPP or TCEP (“Tris’) flame retardants, ozone depleters, and other harmful chemicals. It also means there is low VOC (Volatile Organic Compound) emission for indoor air quality. Essentially, CertiPUR-US® certified foams are better for you and the environment.

You can find brands that offer CertiPUR-US® certified foams here.

Pros and cons of memory foam
Pros Cons
  • Affordable
  • Good at keeping motion transfer at a minimum (you won’t feel your sleeping partner moving)
  • Good for alleviating back pain
  • Good for pressure relief
  • Contours and conforms to your body
  • Won’t provide as much freedom of movement
  • Certain models can trap body heat causing you to sleep hot
  • Tend to be thinner than traditional innerspring mattresses
  • If foams are not labeled as CertiPUR-US certified, they could be harmful to the environment and air quality in your bedroom
  • Not always ideal for stomach sleepers, as this can cause misalignment in the spine which can lead to back pain

Innerspring

  • Overall customer satisfaction: 64%
  • Average price range: $2,000-$5,000

When you think of traditional mattresses, innerspring, or coil, is probably what comes to mind. This is one of the most widely used types of mattresses and is made with at least one layer of spring metal coils. Innerspring mattresses have great bounce, strong edge support, and are usually pretty good about keeping you cool.

Because of the metal coils inside, innerspring beds are heavy and may ship full size (if that’s a factor that will impact your decision). If you’re looking for something that can contour your body well, then an innerspring mattress is probably not for you. Since there’s a decent amount of empty space in an innerspring mattress, you won’t get as much pressure relief as you would with other types of mattresses, but you will have more freedom of movement, which is beneficial if you tend to move around a lot at night.

Russell Whatcott, Director of Innovation at Purple explains it like this:

“The standard springs [in an innerspring mattress] have what is called a spring constant. This means that the harder you push against a spring the harder it pushes back against you. The difficulty with a spring constant is that it can be difficult to get the pressure relief that many people crave while also getting the support (like in the lower back) that most of us need. Usually, you have to make a bit of a compromise in order to get the rest you need.”

Pros and cons of innerspring
Pros Cons
  • Responsive (good if you tend to change positions throughout the night)
  • Strong edge support
  • Good airflow (helps keep you cool)
  • Can be expensive
  • Heavy/difficult to maneuver
  • Will not contour your body or provide as much pressure relief

Latex

  • Overall customer satisfaction: 75%
  • Average price range: $900-$2,000

Latex mattresses are great for people who want many of the benefits of a foam mattress but don’t want to feel as hugged or “contoured.” These mattresses tend to have great cooling properties, bounce and are still responsive – meaning it will adjust to your body as you move around. Ron Rudzin, CEO of Saatva, says, “Latex is great because it has the resiliency of a spring mattress, but locks you in like memory foam.” As we mentioned earlier, latex mattresses also tend to have the longest lifespan of all mattress types.

The downsides? Latex mattresses tend to be more expensive. They are also very dense, meaning they’re going to be on the heavier side. Depending on the type of latex you get, you may notice some of that synthetic, chemically smell for the first few days. But if you opt for a natural latex mattress, you won’t need to worry about that. Natural latex mattresses will come at a higher price tag, but you really are getting the best of the best when it comes to mattresses.

Pros and cons of latex
Pros Cons
  • Provides pressure relief + freedom of movement
  • Durable and will last a long time (up to 15 years)
  • Sleeps cool
  • Expensive
  • Very heavy/difficult to maneuver
  • Can contain harmful chemicals if not organic

Hybrid

  • Overall customer satisfaction: 81%
  • Average price range: $1,000-$1,800

A hybrid mattress usually refers to a mattress that’s made with a combination of memory foam and springs, but it can include other materials and combinations as well (like latex and memory foam). Hybrids tend to offer a good balance of support and pressure relief while providing a cooler sleeping surface that pure memory foam. Motion transfer will also be better on a hybrid than innerspring alone with the help of more motion-absorbing layers.

If you and your significant other want different things in a mattress, then a hybrid might be the best option for you. However, getting the best of both worlds can sometimes mean a higher price point. Hybrid mattresses can also be extremely heavy, making transporting and handling challenging in some cases.

Benefits of a hybrid mattress

Adam Tishman, co-founder of Helix Sleep, specializes in custom hybrid mattresses. He says:

“A hybrid mattress offers the best of both worlds. You get the bounce and cradling effect of springs balanced with the contouring and cushioning of foam. Traditional all innerspring beds can feel stiff and don’t isolate motion well, while all memory foam beds sleep extremely hot and can feel too dense. It’s all about the right balance!”


CONSUMER PREFERENCE

In a recent Mattress Advisor study, we found that 45% of respondents are currently sleeping on an innerspring mattress, but only 12.6% prefer this type of mattress. Memory foam was the most preferred choice at 34.5%.

Preferred mattress types (Survey of 2,000 people)


What you should look for when buying a new mattress

If you’ve done any research on mattresses already, you’ve probably noticed that the mattress industry has its very own lingo – with words like “responsiveness” and “motion transfer.” While they might seem like “fluff” words, they’re actually important factors to consider when choosing a mattress that’s going to best meet your needs.

Here’s a breakdown of these key mattress features – in plain old English – to help you understand why these are so critical when finding the best mattress. It’s important to note that sometimes you won’t be able to realize how well a mattress performs on these factors until you try it out for a few nights. So if you’re not sure what mattress is best for you, make sure to invest in a mattress with a risk-free trial period.

Spine Alignment

When comparing mattresses, you want to look for something that will support your body so that your spine can remain in its natural position. A healthy spine position allows your muscles to rest, meaning you’ll wake up feeling more refreshed in the morning.

If you’re a side sleeper, the line from your tailbone to your neck should be straight. If you’re a back sleeper, your spine should retain its natural curve when you’re lying down on a mattress that provides good support. Stomach sleepers will have a bit more trouble maintaining the natural curve just by nature of the position.

As a rule of thumb, you’ll want a mattress that takes the shape of your spine (providing pressure relief), while simultaneously supporting your weight so your back is aligned properly, according to Vik Singh, founder of Spine & Vigor.

Chiropractor Dr. Michael McGovern, D.C. of Chiro One Wellness Centers explains:

“The impact your bed has on spinal alignment is dependent on the individual’s anatomy. Does a pear-shaped side sleeper need a softer mattress to accommodate the curviness of their anatomy? Does a back sleeper with a hyper- or hypo-lordotic lumbar curve also require a softer mattress to support their lumbar region?

The answer is not straightforward and as always the best advice I can recommend is to spend hours on the bed you’re considering buying before making your final decision. We all have different sizes and shapes and will respond better to certain mattress types.”

Mattress spine alignment test

Mattress Advisor spine alignment test

Pressure Relief

Your body will be best supported by a mattress that evenly distributes your body weight so the heavier parts of your body, like your hips and shoulders, don’t sink in too deeply. If they do, your mattress could be causing strain on your pressure points.

You’ll want to look for a mattress that pushes back when you apply pressure (but not too much). Different mattresses will offer better pressure relief for different body types – so if you’re smaller, you won’t need as much pushback, but if you’re larger, you’ll want to make sure the mattress is proving proper support and you’re not sinking in too much.

Mattress Advisor pressure relief test

Mattress Advisor pressure relief test

Responsiveness

Responsiveness just means how well a mattress reacts and adjusts to your body movements while you sleep. We all move while we sleep, but this is especially important for people who are restless sleepers or tend to change positions often throughout the night.

Motion transfer

Motion transfer refers to how well a mattress absorbs movement. For example, if your sleeping partner is tossing, turning or getting up throughout the night and you’d rather not be bothered by it, you’ll want to look for a mattress that isolates motion well. This also helps if your pets share a bed with you. Memory foam and foam blend mattresses tend to be best for motion transfer.

Firmness

Firmness just means how firm or soft a mattress feels. While all humans are different, the type of sleeper you are usually helps dictate the level of mattress firmness you should look for. Firmness is measured on a scale from 1-10 with 10 being the firmest. (But honestly, unless you find comfort in sleeping on a pile of cotton balls or wood floor, we wouldn’t recommend a 1 or 10 – that’s extreme).

  • Side sleepers tend to prefer softer mattresses (3-6) that contour their body well and provides pressure relief around the hips and shoulders. Typically foam mattresses are better for side sleepers although adding a pillow top to your mattress can also help make this position more comfortable.
  • Stomach sleepers usually prefer a slightly firmer mattress (4-7) for better support since they tend to put more stress on the spine when sleeping in this position. Medium firmness foam mattresses are usually a preferred choice for stomach sleepers but you can also find middle-ground firmness on innerspring and hybrid.
  • Back sleepers need good support on their lower back especially and tend to prefer firmer mattresses (6-8). Most types of mattresses (even memory foam) offer some degree of higher firmness, but you probably want to stay away from mattresses that are on the softer side.

Dr. McGovern, D.C., will usually recommend a mattress on the firmer side to his patients as mattresses tend to get softer over time.

Contrary to popular belief, firmness and support are two different things. Vik from Spine & Vigor explains it like this: “Firmness is the pushback you feel from your mattress at certain pressure points. Support [on the other hand], is the weight your mattress foundation can hold to support your body properly.”

36% of people who sleep with a partner claim that they prefer a different firmness level than their partner does.

Temperature control / heat transfer

While you’re sleeping, you want to make sure your mattress is helping to transfer heat away from your body, not keep it trapped within its layers. (No one wants to wake up in a pile of sweat.)

Mattresses that offer a cool sleeping surface include: breathable, or aerated, layers that promote airflow, materials that help wick heat away (like wool covers), air channels, or materials designed specifically to react to your body’s temperature, like Celliant.

“The reason temperature impacts sleep so much is that we have to have a decrease in our core body temperature in order to fall asleep. If you have ever had a fever, you know what that feels like – you don’t sleep very well! We have very fragmented sleep when we have a fever and that’s because our core body temp can’t decrease. The ideal temp for sleeping is 65 – 68 degrees. If that’s too cold for you, just pile on more blankets. As long as your head is exposed to that cold air, you will decrease your core body temp.”

– Dr. Robert Oexman, Director of the Sleep to Live Institute

Durability

When looking for your perfect mattress, you want quality, premium material that will last (preferably without tons of nasty chemicals). The strength of the material is important – you don’t want sagging or lumps and want your mattress to maintain its elasticity and support for years to come.

Edge support

Edge support is what prevents you from rolling off the mattress in the middle of the night. Innerspring mattresses usually have a separate support layer around the edges that help keep you on it, while foam mattresses typically don’t have a separate edge layer. However, it’s also harder to “roll off” of a foam mattress.

This factor is important if you’re a particularly restless sleeper (or have a history of falling off beds…), or if you use the end of your bed to put your socks and shoes on in the morning.

Trial, warranty and return policy

Even if a thousand people love a mattress, it doesn’t mean you will too. Everyone’s body is different therefore you’re going to respond to your mattress differently. Before you buy your mattress, make sure you pay attention to the trial period you have, what’s covered under your warranty, and return policy (most of our favorites have a very generous trial period, warranty policy and hassle-free returns).

You should also try to give your mattress at least 30 days to “break it in” and see if it’s right for you before you kick it to the curb. (Although we don’t recommend actually kicking it to the curb if you want a refund.)

“You have to give your body time to adjust. Maybe you have a “wow” moment the first time you try out a new mattress, but your body is in a different state when you’re sleeping. You have got to give yourself time. That’s why we say 30 days. You have to give your body a chance to adjust and adapt. It doesn’t matter whose product it is, you can’t make a judgment really quickly.”

– Jamie Diamonstein, Co-founder of Leesa

For reference, most online mattress companies offer a trial period of 100 nights or more.

Shipping

Most of our favorite mattresses ship free and fast, but you should also pay attention to how it ships. If you live in a small or walk-up apartment, then mattresses that ship condensed in a box might be more convenient than mattresses that ship full size.

We know it can be hard to picture something as big as a mattress being shipped in a box that’s a fraction of the size, but it really is possible. Here’s proof!

If you can’t visualize lugging a full-size mattress up a flight of stairs going smoothly, it probably won’t go smoothly. There are also some companies who will come take your old mattress for a small fee (~$40) and set up your new mattress for you.

Size

When it comes to size, the best mattress for you can be determined by considering two important factors: who will be sleeping on it and where will it go?

Who will be sleeping on it?

While this certainly has to do with the size of the people who will be sleeping on it, it also has to do with personal preference.

If you’re single or shopping for children/teens then a twin or full size mattress will probably be suitable. The most common size for couples is a queen size mattress because it fits well into most bedrooms and is large enough to give both people the space they need to sleep without disturbing each other. Sheets and other accessories are also cheaper and more available for queen beds than larger sizes.

King size mattresses have crept up in the popularity polls recently because they essentially offer couples as much space in bed with their partner as if they were alone in a twin. If you’re a restless sleeper who needs lots of room, then a king mattress is the way to go. It’s also a popular choice among couples with pets or children who sneak into bed every now and then.

For taller or larger folks, California king might seem attractive. Buyers of both king sizes should be aware of increased costs for the bed itself and accessories, and more challenging set-up due to the size and weight of the mattress.

In a recent Mattress Advisor study among couples who share a bed, 46% sleep on a queen, 44% sleep on a king and 9% sleep on a California king.

Here are the dimensions* for standard bed sizes so you know what to expect: 

Size Dimensions
Twin 38” x 75”
Twin XL 38” x 80”
Full 54” x 75”
Queen 60” x 80”
King 76” x 80”
California King 72” x 84”

 

*Note: mattresses differ in their height, which is why we are only providing width and length as standard dimensions.

Where will it go?

If you’re moving into a new space or looking to change the size of your mattress, be sure to plan ahead by measuring how your new mattress will fit into your sleeping area. Knowing that your new mattress will fit in your room (along with any other furniture) ahead of time can save you a major headache later on. One member of our team had to cut a custom-made “extra long” double bed back down to standard size so that the bedroom door of his tiny 400 square foot Boston apartment would actually open and close.

If you are planning to change things up, there are a number of free room planning tools available that will allow you to see what your new setup might look like before you pull the trigger. We like Roomstyler 3D Home Planner which allows you to customize your room layout and already has different bed sizes and standard furniture pieces pre-loaded.

Price

While we’re focusing on high-quality mattresses in this article (that are also affordable) we feel like we need to warn you about prices that are too low and too high. If you find a mattress under $500 (for a queen), it typically means they’re cutting corners or using cheaper materials. Which means you’ll likely end up getting low quality sleep.

Many of the online-only brands that cut out the middleman fees can offer a great quality mattress for under $1,000 for a queen size mattress. Certainly, there are mattresses that are more expensive than that, but you’re likely paying for bells and whistles, or hidden markups at that point.

A mattress can feel like a big investment, but you can also think about price this way: If you buy a $1,000 mattress, only sleep on it for 300 days out of the year, and own it for 7 years, you’re essentially paying $0.48 a day to get a great night’s sleep. (Your latte costs 10x more than that.)


CONSUMER PREFERENCE

Mattress Advisor surveyed 2,000 people to see which factors were most important to them when shopping for a mattress. The factors they considered “very important” were comfort (91.41%), support (81.37%), durability (77.06%) and price (76.58%).

Factor Very important Not at all important Moderately important
Comfort 91.41% 1.23% 7.37%
Support 81.37% 1.58% 17.05%
Durability 77.06% 1.94% 21%
Price 76.58% 2.09% 21.33%
Firmness 56.17% 4.23% 39.60%
Pressure relief 53.31% 5.91% 40.77%
Return policy 35.26% 17.24% 47.50%
Responsiveness 34.80% 13.32%  51.89%
Motion transfer  30.26%  25.52%  44.22%
Edge support  29.83%  25.85%  44.31%

Where to buy your mattress

Pros and cons of buying a new mattress online vs. in-store

One question you might be asking yourself is: “Can I really buy a mattress online without trying it out first?” Fair question. But then consider this: You can’t really tell if a mattress is right for you without testing it out for a while. We’re talking like 30 days. So while you can feel a mattress and wiggle around on it for a few minutes in a mattress store, you’re not really getting the full experience anyway.

Here are some other reasons why buying a mattress online might benefit you:

Lower cost 

Buying from online-only mattress companies cuts out most of those “middleman” fees that retail stores rack on, so you can get a great quality mattress for a fraction of the cost. A premium mattress in a store can cost anywhere from $3,000 – $5,000 – which includes retail markups, wholesale markups, showroom fees, commission-based sales representatives, multiple delivery patterns, and somewhere in there, the mattress itself. The price is inflated at every step so all the players can make cash money off the deal. Online retailers ship directly to their customers so they’re cutting all the “extra” stuff out and therefore can offer a quality mattress for under $1,000.

Easy delivery and setup 

Typically, buying a mattress online means it will be shipped in a box or package that’s much smaller than the actual mattress. This means the entire delivery and setup process is easier. It can be left right at your doorstep or mailroom and carrying it to your bedroom is way less of a hassle – especially if you live on a 5th-floor walkup. Most online mattress companies will ship your mattress at no cost and some will even remove of your old mattress for a small fee of around $40 or so.

Generous trial period

Online mattress companies offer a generous trial period (usually 100+ days) for you to determine if this mattress is a keeper or if your search for the perfect mattress will go on. These are typically risk-free trials so you should take advantage of them and be sure not to settle if it doesn’t end up working for you. Most online companies also offer free returns where they’ll pick up the mattress right from your home at no extra charge. Many of them will donate your unwanted mattress to local charities. So you don’t need to feel guilty for returning your mattress.

“People buy a mattress based on comfort. No one buys a mattress that sucks. But there is something that happens at home after a period of time that causes customers to call and say I can’t sleep on this thing. So it’s not a comfort thing. It’s a support thing.”

– Dr. Robert Oexman, Director of the Sleep to Live Institute

Time savings

There’s also the obvious fact that buying online saves you a trip to the mattress store. You can do your research in the comfort of your own home and with the click of a button, it’s on its way to your doorstep. You can avoid the awkward interaction with salespeople in the mattress store who are working on commission and might make you feel pressured to buy.

Buying a mattress that comes compressed in a box that’s a fraction of the size might seem like a strange idea, but believe it or not, it can actually improve the performance of your mattress. A study conducted by Leesa showed that compressed beds performed better than an uncompressed bed. Why? A technical reason is that compressed beds are built with very high-quality foams.

“It’s like wearing a pair of washed jeans,” Jamie Diamonstein, Co-founder of Leesa told us. “You get a brand new pair of jeans, but if you wash them they kind of get broken in. They feel better.” Turns out compressing can help break in a mattress just the same!

That being said, if you’re old school and feel like you need to see/feel/touch your mattress before you buy it, there are certainly great mattress options available at retail stores, you should just be prepared to pay top dollar (and not necessarily because you’re getting a better mattress). Some online mattress brands like Casper, Leesa and Purple also have their mattresses available at select retail locations.


The best time to buy a mattress

Buying a new mattress is a big investment, and in some cases, it pays to hold off your mattress purchase until the prices are discounted. Luckily, those times come at fairly predictable and frequent times throughout the year for many mattress brands and retail stores.

While not every company will always participate in these major sales, there’s a good chance you can find a great mattress deal around these holidays:

  • Black Friday
  • President’s Day
  • Memorial Day
  • Independence Day
  • Labor Day
  • New Years

Keep in mind that most mattress sales start up to a week before the holiday and can extend up to a week after the holiday.

You can also expect to save on mattresses around different company events, like grand opening sales, liquidation sales, moving sales and anniversary sales. These aren’t as predictable so it’s something to keep an eye out for. If you’re in the market for a new mattress, you might want to sign up for a few company newsletters to get alerts about sales and discounts. (You can always unsubscribe later!)

Hint: We always consolidate the best mattress sales for our readers on our coupons page.

HOW MUCH CAN YOU EXPECT TO SAVE?

If you’re buying a mattress online, you can expect to always pay less than in-store. You can save as much as 40% on some mattresses if you are willing and able to wait for a sale online. The other benefit of buying a mattress online is that you don’t have to go mattress shopping on your day off!

At bricks & mortar stores, you can expect to save up to 60% on mattresses during sale periods, but remember that the overall price is going to be higher since you’re also paying for many of the mark-up fees.


What to avoid when shopping for a new mattress

We’ve walked you through the important things that you want to see in a mattress, but keep in mind that there are a number of things you should avoid when mattress shopping. In general, you’ll want to stay away from the extremes.

Take a look at some of the warning signs we’ve outlined below.

Too soft or too firm

Even if you know you prefer something very soft or very firm, it’s a good idea to stay away from the extremes on the firmness scale (1s or 10s). There’s less of a chance you’ll find comfort on an extremely soft or extremely firm mattress over time.

Very cheap, very expensive 

Mattresses under $500 (for a queen size) usually mean that you’re getting a lower quality mattress. That could be fine for a guest bedroom or temporary sleeping space, but be aware that cheaper mattresses won’t last you as long. And while you can certainly buy a quality mattress around $1,000, there are always going to be options that cost more and promise more. We’ve actually seen mattresses that cost upwards of $20,000 – and while yes, it’s likely a great mattress, it’s definitely not worth that much. Dr. Travis Russell of Chiro One Wellness said it the best:

“Don’t be cheap. Pay for quality, it will serve you in the long run. Life is too short to get a poor night’s sleep. For easy math, let’s assume you spend 8 hours a night sleeping. That’s 1/3 or your life you spend sleeping. Over the course of your life, there is nothing else you’ll do more than that. Sleep is when your body does the vast majority of its healing. Make an investment in your health and pony up for a high-quality mattress that supports you properly. Your body will thank you for it.”

No trial period or return policy

If you buy a mattress that doesn’t offer a trial period or return policy, you’re essentially stuck with that mattress or will lose some or all of your money if you decide it’s not the right for you. This is especially important when purchasing a mattress online, but just because you tested a mattress in a store doesn’t mean it’s going to feel the same when you sleep on it for a while. Your body also needs different amounts of support in your wake state vs. your sleeping state – so it’s almost impossible to know if a mattress is going to work for you until you sleep on it for a few weeks.

No warranty

When investing in a product as significant as a mattress, it’s important to make sure you’re purchase is protected. There’s always a chance for a manufacturing flaw or error with the way the mattress was made. Warranties allow you the opportunity to send back your mattress and get a new one within a certain time period (usually 10-20 years). A warranty is also a good sign that a mattress company can stand by their quality and in the off-chance that your mattress wasn’t properly made, they’ll promise to fix it.

Poor customer reviews

While it’s usually a good idea to disregard the most extreme reviews, if you come across a mattress that has a significant number of poor reviews (or an overall lower customer satisfaction score) it’s usually a good idea to stay away from those. It’s a good idea to get a sense of the total number of customer reviews and see how many of them are not favorable. If you’re looking for a particular feature in a mattress (i.e. cooling), and you find that a decent amount of customers are complaining about sleeping too hot, then it’s probably time to move on.

Too thin

Typically mattresses will range from 9-12” depending on the brand and model. Mattresses thinner than this likely won’t provide the level of cushion and support that you need for quality sleep.


Expert tips for buying the best mattress

Dr. Scott Bautch, President of the American Chiropractic Association’s Council on Occupational Health, told us: “I’ve practiced for 30 years and have had 25,000 patients. I’d say at least 50% of patients have not matched their mattress to their body type or have received advice on how to do that best.”

That’s pretty sad news if you ask us. So we’ve gathered the best advice for finding the perfect mattress from the experts themselves.

Joe Alexander – Founder of Nest Bedding

“Research, research, research! Don’t think you’re crazy because you’ve searched a bunch of sites and reviews. Don’t pull the trigger until you’re confident. Choosing a bed online isn’t as hard as some think, but get to know the policies and see what other people have experienced with the companies you’re considering.

And always toss out the bottom and top reviews from customers, see what the majority of consumers are saying.”

Ron Rudzin - CEO of Saatva

“Once you know the type of mattress you want [memory foam, innerspring, latex], I would always make sure that the foams are American foams. Foams that come from overseas have less health and safety standards. America by far has the highest levels of health and safety standards in the world.

You also want to make sure that the bed breathes and has airflow, and is made with natural fabrics. No matter what, even if it’s really cold in the winter, you don’t want a warm bed.”

 

Adam Tishman – Co-Founder of Helix

“Finding the perfect mattress takes time. Lying on a mattress for 2 minutes in a store has no statistical correlation with whether or not you’ll actually like that mattress. Similarly, it can take weeks to get used to your new mattress. It’s important to know that going in otherwise it will be hard to match your expectation to reality.”

Carly Griffin - Co-Founder of Zonkd

“Really think about what your personal preferences and budget are. There’s still some skepticism around shopping for a mattress online but it’s so easy to compare different products and do research in the comfort of your own home. Plus, the trial periods allow you to see for yourself if you like the mattress, or you get your money back – it’s a win-win!”

Russell Whatcott - Director of Innovation at Purple

“You should look for something that attempts to address either the largest majority of your health concerns the best or that addresses the highest priority on your list of ailments. If you don’t worry as much about constant pain or discomfort and you just want to have a better night’s sleep, think of those things that cross your mind as you first get up in the morning or those things that come to mind when you visit a hotel or sleep in a different bed than you are used to. What is it that stands out to you – good or bad – from that?

Your body can go through some adjustments as you get used to a new mattress. That process can take more than one night so it can’t be taken entirely at face value, but those impressions can be considered as you contemplate a mattress purchase.”

Martin Rawls-Meehan - CEO of Reverie

“Eco-friendly mattress materials are many, but here are some you’ll want to keep an eye out for: plant-based oils, bamboo, aloe vera, soy, organic cotton, and natural latex, which comes from the sap of a rubber tree plant like the one shown above. Organic wool is also a smart option, as it contains natural fire retardant properties that allow manufacturers to avoid treating their mattresses with toxic chemicals (mattresses are required by law to be fire-retardant).

If you want to go fully green, you’ll need to make a few concessions. Your mattress may have some wrinkles, as chemical treatments are used to make materials wrinkle-free. You also may need to opt for a lower thread count, since the thin threads required for high-thread-count sheets are often strengthened with chemicals.”

Terry Pearce – Co-Founder of Purple

“Look at the ingredients. Unfortunately, it can be hard to find quality products when you’re shopping for a mattress, but that can be the difference between a mattress that lasts for one year or 20 years.”

John Merwin – Co-Founder of Brooklyn Bedding

“You spend a third of your life on your mattress. Make sure you invest in a quality mattress that meets your sleep needs.”

JT Marino – Co-Founder of Tuft & Needle

Skip the mattress stores and go with an online company where you can return it if you don’t like it.”

Daniel Galle – Founder of Nolah

“My advice would be to choose your mattress based on your preference for firmness. Incorrect firmness is typically the common cause for a poor sleep experience.”


How to get rid of your old mattress

If you’ve decided it’s finally time for a new mattress, you might be wondering what to do with your old mattress. Here’s a hint: Do not leave it on the side of the road! In many cities, you can actually be fined for leaving your mattress on the curb.

There are better (and more environmentally friendly) ways to make room for your new bed. Take a look at our guide on getting rid of your old mattress for tips on how to properly get rid of it based on the condition of your mattress.

Getting rid of your old mattress?

Use this as a resource to help you properly dispose of or donate your old mattress, depending on the condition that it's in

Get Started

We get that choosing your mattress is a big deal – it’s where you dream, love, recharge, binge watch your favorite Netflix shows and nurse yourself back to sleep during flu season. By this point, we hope we’ve helped you select the mattress that’s going to be best for you. At the very least, we hope you have a better understanding of what’s out there and what to look for in a mattress.

If you still have unanswered questions, leave us a comment below and we’ll do our best to help you out.

Sweet dreams!


 

FAQs

How much should I expect to spend on a new mattress?

The average price of a bed-in-a-box mattress that you can buy online is around $1,000 for a queen-size bed. You can find budget mattresses in the $600-$700 range. Luxury hybrid mattresses may cost a bit more and typically sell for $1,500-$2,000.

If you shop in a traditional mattress store, expect to pay upwards of 40% more on your mattress. You’ll be paying for things like commission and overhead, as opposed to online retailers who sell directly to the consumer.

If I buy a mattress online and don't like it, can I return it?

Almost all online mattresses come with a trial period that typically lasts a few months. During this time, you have the luxury of sleeping on your new mattress in your own home to decide if it’s right for you. If not, you can return it for a refund. The company you purchased from with usually come pick up the mattress from your home and arrange for a donation to a local charity. If your mattress came in a box, you don’t have to worry about trying to get it back in.

How long should my mattress last?

Mattresses can last anywhere from 5-10 years depending on the quality and materials, as well as how much use the mattress gets. After 10 years, your mattress has accumulated dust mites and bacteria after regular use and it is good for your health to invest in a new one.

What if my partner and I want different things in a mattress?

It’s common for couples to have different sleeping styles and preferences when it comes to choosing a mattress. If your preferences vary greatly, look for something in the middle in terms of firmness, support and “hug.” Other important factors to consider when sharing a bed are motion transfer and cooling.

If I buy a new mattress, will I need a new box spring or bed frame too?

If your existing box spring or bed frame is in good condition, you may still be able to use it with your new mattress. The important thing to consider is whether your mattress foundation is compatible with the type of mattress you have. For example, memory foam mattresses will need more supportive foundations than innerspring mattresses. Using the appropriate foundation can have a big impact on how your mattress feels.

By clicking on the product links in this article, Mattress Advisor may receive a commission fee at no cost to you, the reader. Read full disclosure statement.

Comments (611)

  1. I recently came across a memory foam mattress called Flo Ergo which has 3D technology for absorping body heat. How much is this true?

  2. Right Mattresses information is must. So what kind of material and how long lasting are mattresses…these are information is must before buying. Your site is really informative as well it would be perfect match for people who are seeking more information before buying high quality mattresses. Keep it up. Well Done!

  3. I feel this is an extremely helpful guide for people who are in the market for a new mattress. And I will definitely use it when I’m in the market for a mattress again. I will also inform other people of it when they are in the market for a new mattress.

  4. I appreciate this article a lot! I never know what kind of mattress is best for the way I sleep, but now I do!

  5. Maybe this is the answer to my insomnia.They look so comfortable and the comments I read about them are wonderful,Thank you so much for the chance to participate

  6. I need a 100 % guarantee that I am going to love my new mattress. this is my 3rd in 3 years. I cant seem to get it right Ugggh

  7. Thank you for the great tips, I am definitely in the market for a couple of new mattresses. These tips will help make shopping around much easier.


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