Best Cheap Mattress for Your Budget in 2021

Creating a budget and sticking to it can be hard. Finding the best mattress within your budget shouldn’t be.

By Ashley Little

Jul 14th, 2021

Finding an inexpensive and affordable mattress without sacrificing on purchasing a high-quality bed can feel like a challenge, but there are plenty of affordable beds you can buy online for less than $1,000.

We price a “budget mattress” around $700. In this guide, we’ll review our 10 top-rated cheap mattresses and help you understand how to find an inexpensive mattress without sacrificing on quality.


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.


Best Cheap Mattresses


Casper

casper original hero
Casper

Best Cheap Memory Foam Mattress (Editor's Pick)

Best for

  • Combination sleepers
  • People who need good edge support
  • Memory foam shoppers
CUSTOMER RATING

4.5

/

5

MA SCORE

9.1

/

10

FIRMNESS

Medium-firm: 6/10

TRIAL PERIOD

100 days

Best Cheap Memory Foam Mattress 

The Casper is designed with four different foam layers that provide durability, soft comfort, pressure relief, and support. That means you can count on relief in high-pressure areas such as the shoulders and hips.

Pros

In our testing, the Casper stood out for its outstanding edge support and great spine alignment at a reasonable price. It also performs well in responsiveness, making it a strong option for the sleeper who shifts about throughout the night.

Cons

The Casper doesn’t perform particularly well as a cooling mattress, earning only a 7 out of 10 in our lab. That’s not uncommon with foam mattresses, although there are foam mattresses that are designed to cool, such as the Cocoon Chill.

Read our full Casper mattress review.


Bowery Hybrid by Brooklyn Bedding

Bowery hybrid lifestyle
Brooklyn Bowery Hybrid

Best Cheap Hybrid Mattress

Best for

  • Couples
  • People who sleep hot
  • Back sleepers
CUSTOMER RATING

5

/

5

MA SCORE

9

/

10

FIRMNESS

Medium-firm: 6/10

TRIAL PERIOD

120 days

Best Cheap Hybrid Mattress 

The gel memory foam topper combined with the coil spring layer keeps you from overheating, making it a great cooling mattress for hot sleepers. The high-density foam bottom provides extra support for people who sleep on their backs and plus-sized sleepers as well.

See: Best Mattresses for Heavy People

Pros

This hybrid bed scored particularly well on our spinal alignment test, scoring a 8.75 out of 10, meaning you’ll wake up feeling well-rested and keep your back pain-free each night.

Cons

The Bowery Hybrid scored an 8 out of 10 in our lab for responsiveness, which isn’t shabby. However, if you move about a lot at night, you might want to turn elsewhere. We recommend the Casper.

Read our full Bowery Hybrid mattress review.


Dreamfoam Elements Latex

advisor lifestyle 2 1 1
Elements Latex

Best Cheap Pillow Top Mattress

Best for

  • Hot sleepers
  • Couples
  • Combination sleepers
CUSTOMER RATING

4.5

/

5

MA SCORE

8.4

/

10

FIRMNESS

Soft, Medium, Firm

TRIAL PERIOD

120 days

Best Cheap Pillow Top Mattress

This mattress consists of an optional quilted plush pillow top, a responsive latex layer, and a supportive polyfoam base layer. Together, these layers create a mattress great for every sleeping position and your wallet.

See: Best Pillow Top Mattresses

Pros

As a hybrid, this mattress does a good job of keeping you cool at night—we gave it an 8.5 out of 10 in our lab for cooling. Pressure relief also did well, with an 8.7 out of 10 for that metric, as well as an 8/10 for spine alignment

Cons

The Dreamfoam Elements Latex only scored a 7 out of 10 in our lab for edge support. That means this may not be the right option if you need support getting out of bed, if you like to put your shoes on in the morning on the edge of your bed, or if you sleep on the edge.

Read our full Elements Latex mattress review.


Studio by Leesa

studio by leesa lifestyle
Studio by Leesa

Best Cheap Mattress for Back Pain

Best for

  • Couples
  • Combination sleepers
  • People with joint pain
CUSTOMER RATING

4.6

/

5

MA SCORE

8.7

/

10

FIRMNESS

Medium firm: 5-7/10

TRIAL PERIOD

100 days

Best Cheap Mattress for Back Pain

The cushiony pressure relief it offers eases your hips, shoulders, and lower back, so people with back and joint pain wake up feeling refreshed. And this memory foam mattress has great responsiveness for people who toss and turn at night. 

See: Best Mattresses for Back Pain

Pros

The Studio by Leesa is a good call for partners who share a bed. We gave it an 8.25 out of 10 for motion transfer, something that you’ll want to pay attention to if you share your bed, whether with a partner, kids, or pets.

Cons

If you are older or have balance issues, this may not be your top choice in a mattress. We found that the edge support for this product was not what it could be, earning a 7 out of 10 in our mattress lab.

Read our full Leesa Studio mattress review.


Nectar

nectar original lifestyle updated
Nectar

Best Cheap Mattress for Side Sleepers

Best for

  • Co-sleepers
  • All sleeping positions
  • Combination sleepers
CUSTOMER RATING

4.8

/

5

MA SCORE

8.7

/

10

FIRMNESS

Medium-firm: 5.5-6/10

TRIAL PERIOD

365 days

Best Cheap Mattress for Side Sleepers

When you sleep on your side, it’s important to get the right amount of give in key areas of your body, particularly your shoulders and hips. The Nectar scored an 8.5 out of 10 in pressure relief in our testing, making it an excellent option for the side sleeper.

Pros

In terms of quality, the Nectar does not disappoint. In fact, less than 3% of Nectar’s customers end up returning this budget mattress! It offers great edge support, responsiveness, cooling air flow, and durability.

Cons

The Nectar has a cooling cover and breathable foam layers, but there have been complaints from customers about this mattress sometimes sleeping hot, which is not surprising since it is an all-foam product. However, its score in our testing was an acceptable 7.75 out of 10.

Read our full Nectar mattress review.


GhostBed

ghostbed luxe mattress lifestyle 2
GhostBed

Best Cheap Bed in a Box

Best for

  • Sleepers who tend to overheat
  • Edge-of-the-bed sleepers
  • Plus-size people
CUSTOMER RATING

4.8

/

5

MA SCORE

8.6

/

10

FIRMNESS

Medium-firm: 6.5/10

TRIAL PERIOD

101 days

Best Cheap Bed in a Box

The GhostBed is top-notch as a bed in a box, which means you can count on ease in ordering and delivery. In fact, we gave this mattress a perfect score of 10 out of 10 in shipping, trial period, warranty, and return policy.

Pros

The original GhostBed might be very affordable, but you probably wouldn’t guess that by sleeping on it. Made with a combination of latex, gel memory foam, and high-density support foam, this mattress has high durability, top-notch temperature regulation, and solid responsiveness.

Cons

Set-up for this product only received a 7 out of 10 in our testing. We found that an 89-pound queen mattress takes a couple of people to set it up and there was some off-gassing when it was unpackaged, meaning there was an odor initially.

Read our full GhostBed mattress review.


Cocoon

cocoon hero
Cocoon

Best Cheap Cooling Mattress

Best for

  • Every sleeping position
  • Couples
  • Restless sleepers
CUSTOMER RATING

4.7

/

5

MA SCORE

8.7

/

10

FIRMNESS

Medium-firm: 6/10

TRIAL PERIOD

100 days

Best Cheap Mattress for Cooling

The Cocoon Chill, a budget-friendly memory foam mattress, impressed us with its ability to keep cool throughout the night. The mattress cover actually remained cool to the touch, even as we tested it, thanks in large part to its design, which is infused with heat-dissipating material.

Pros

Even if you don’t sleep warm, the Cocoon’s impressive scores on the motion isolation, spine alignment, and responsiveness tests make this a great option for couples, people who suffer from back pain, or anyone who tosses and turns throughout the night.

Cons

There’s a lot to love about this mattress, but we did find that this may not be the best choice for sleepers who are heavy—the Cocoon can only handle 500 pounds in total weight. There was also some off-gassing, which should dissipate the first week.

Read our full Cocoon mattress review.


Tuft & Needle 

tuft and needle
Tuft & Needle

Best Cheap Queen Mattress

Best for

  • Side sleepers
  • People who aren’t looking for anything specific
  • Those who toss and turn
CUSTOMER RATING

4.6

/

5

MA SCORE

8.7

/

10

FIRMNESS

Medium-firm: 6/10

TRIAL PERIOD

100 days

Best Cheap Queen Mattress

A queen-size Tuft & Needle mattress won’t run you more than $695. This mattress comes with the bed-in-a-box standard 100-night trial period and a 10-year warranty.

Pros

The Tuft & Needle mattress is an affordable memory foam mattress that’s suitable for all types of sleepers. Because its medium firmness level works for all, we recommend this “universal mattress” for anyone who doesn’t have particular preferences or the average sleeper. 

Cons

If you are looking for a mattress with great edge support, you might want to keep shopping. We scored this product a 7.25 out of 10 for edge support, something you’ll want if you sleep on the edge or need support when getting up out of bed.

Read our full Tuft & Needle mattress review.


Allswell

allswell headshot e1543444423655
The Allswell

Best Cheap King Mattress

Best for

  • People who sleep with a partner
  • Those with back pain
  • Side sleepers
CUSTOMER RATING

4.8

/

5

MA SCORE

8.2

/

10

FIRMNESS

Medium - 5/10

TRIAL PERIOD

100 days

Best Cheap King Mattress

Affordable hybrid mattresses are hard to come by, but the Allswell mattress is one of those rare finds. A king or California king will only cost you $420, a rock-bottom price for a mattress that size. 

Pros

Made with a breathable top layer of comfort foam and a base of supportive coils, Allswell is a great option for those looking for a guest room mattress. We also liked this mattress for couples; we scored it a 9/10 for motion transfer.

Cons

This product’s durability only got a 7 out of 10 in our testing, so if you are looking for a mattress that you will be using day in, day out, you might want to consider something with more staying power, such as the GhostBed.

Read our full Allswell mattress review.


Zinus Green Tea

memory foam green tea feature aa747a45 129e 442d bea6 0a7ba4e95fb3 1296x
Zinus Green Tea

Best Cheap Mattress on Amazon

Best for

  • Memory foam shoppers
  • Those who want their mattress to hug them
  • People who sleep with a partner
CUSTOMER RATING

4.4

/

5

MA SCORE

7.8

/

10

FIRMNESS

Medium-Soft: 4.5/10

TRIAL PERIOD

100 days

Best Cheap Mattress on Amazon

The Zinus Green Tea is a high-quality, all-foam mattress offered at a low price point and easily accessible on Amazon. Choose between a six-, eight-, 10-, or 12-inch thick mattress, depending on your needs or body type; a thicker mattress holds off sagging for longer.

Pros

This mattress is more on the plush side, so it is perfect for people who love the feeling of a mattress that hugs them. Zinus also offers great motion isolation, perfect for couples or people who sleep with their pets. 

Cons

The Zinus Green Tea only received a 6.5 out of 10 for durability in our test lab, meaning you might want to look at another mattress if you need one for everyday wear. A queen is only $205-$374, making it a good choice for a guest room. Otherwise, consider the Nectar.

Read our full Zinus Green Tea mattress review.


How Much Should a Good Mattress Cost?

Today, you can find a high-quality mattress for around $1,000 or less when you buy from an online-only or bed-in-a-box mattress brand. (For comparison, a quality mattress from a mattress store will typically cost you between $3,000 – $5,000.)

Read More: Best Mattress for the Money

Risks of Buying a Cheap Mattress

If you’re shopping for a cheap mattress, you may end up with one that cuts corners and lacks quality materials. It’s important to know that, like with any purchase, shopping for a mattress on the cheap end of the spectrum comes with a set of risks including: 

  • Interrupted or uncomfortable sleep 
  • Off-gassing from cheap mattresses with chemicals
  • A shorter lifespan and quicker sagging in the mattress
  • Low-quality or foreign materials  

Are Cheap Mattresses Worth It?

A cheaply made mattress won’t offer as much luxurious comfort as a high-end mattress will, and it will have a shorter lifespan than the average mattress. To that end, you may find your mattress sagging within a few years and need to look a replacement anyways, so you may be better off putting in more money initially for a higher quality mattress

That being said, an affordable mattress isn’t necessarily a bad option. There are many great mattresses available in the low price range that have a decent lifespan and offer great support. The risks of buying a cheap mattress are more applicable to those at that absolute lowest price range

If you’re finding a mattress under $300 or so, those are more likely to have the shortest lifespans and offer the least amount of comfort and support to sleepers.

What Affects the Price of a Mattress?

You may be wondering how there can be such a wide price range for mattresses–besides, aren’t they all kind of the same? 

In fact, there are many factors that differentiate mattresses and can drive up costs. When you’re shopping for a mattress on a budget, it can help to be aware of these factors and know which you’re willing to pay for and which you can skip out on to save money. 

The top factors driving up mattress costs include: 

  • Mattress size: Larger mattresses require more materials to make and cost more. 
  • Brand: Some brands market themselves as luxury brands, while others target the average consumer. 
  • Certifications: Certi-PUR US, GREENGUARD Gold, Oeko-Tex, GOLS, GOTS, and more… All of these certifications are important and state that the mattress was made with high-quality or natural materials and was manufactured sustainably. Many of these labels also restrict volatile organic compounds (VOC) emissions.
  • Point of Sale: Shopping online from a direct-to-consumer (DTC) brand cuts the cost of the middleman or salesman commissions from shopping in-store. 
  • Cooling elements: Copper, gel beds, and other cooling technologies drive up the price of a mattress. 
  • Advanced foams: High-density memory foam and organic or natural latex are higher quality and can make a mattress more expensive (and comfortable).
  • Zoned coils: Innersprings or hybrids with zoned or targeted supportive coil layers require advanced construction and cost more.

So how do you know which of these you can really skimp out on and which you need? It depends on your personal situation. 

If you’re a naturally hot sleeper, paying a little extra for a mattress with advanced cooling technology can make a real difference on your sleep quality. But if you live in a cooler climate and don’t tend to sleep hot, this won’t really apply to you. 

If you have a lot of allergies, a certified organic and hypoallergenic mattress that you know was made with natural materials may be a necessary element for you to look out for. Or if you have chronic pain or any type of discomfort while you sleep, you may need a mattress made with high-quality materials like advanced foams or zoned support coil layers. 

Ultimately, it comes down to your unique situation, but it’s always good to know which of these boxes you need to check and which you can avoid.

Most Affordable Mattress Types

Mattresses also tend to vary in price by type. For example, memory foam can be among the cheapest, while air beds can be among the most expensive.

  • Memory Foam: Memory foam mattresses are by far the most budget-friendly type of mattress you can buy. These beds are typically around $300–$1,000 and have a decent lifespan around five to seven years. 
  • Innerspring: Traditional innerspring mattresses are also usually pretty affordable, ranging around $800–$1,900. Innersprings are more firm and bouncy and have a lifespan around six to eight years.
  • Hybrids: Hybrid mattresses combine innerspring coils with foam or latex materials and cost around $1,500–$3,000 plus. These mattresses are very durable and supportive, and have a lifespan around six to 10 years.
  • Latex: Latex mattresses usually are marketed as luxury models and cost around the same as hybrids around $1,500–$2,000, though you can find cheaper latex mattresses around $1,000. 
  • Airbeds: Different from air mattresses, airbeds are mattresses with customizable air chambers that you can adjust to change the firmness level. These luxury mattresses are often at least $2,000–$3,000.  

How To Choose a Cheap Mattress

Where Is the Best Place to Buy a Cheap Mattress?

The best place to look for a cheap or budget mattress is online. Direct-to-consumer beds come straight from the mattress manufacturer to your door, meaning they also don’t have to worry about sharing the sale with mattress stores and retailers; this means lower costs for you.

What Are Cheap Mattresses Good For?

Budget mattresses are well-suited for people who are looking for a temporary mattress for a rental in college, your guest bedroom, or if you’re looking to decorate your Airbnb. 

But if you’re shopping for yourself, you may consider stretching your budget a little more. Besides, you spend one-third of your life on your mattress, so you want it to be comfortable and durable.

Who Will Use the Bed?

Kids, teenagers, and adults all have different needs in a mattress. Kids and teenagers spend much more time sleeping when they are young, plus they have smaller bodies, so you will want to consider the durability of the mattress and the size. While a twin is appropriate for a child, it’s not for a large adult or a couple.

Which brings us to our next point: How many sleepers are you accommodating on your mattress? The more humans (or animals) that share the bed, the bigger size you will need. Plus you’ll want to consider special features like cooling (more bodies = more body heat), motion isolation (so you don’t wake each other up all night), and durability (because of the added weight). 

Related: Best Mattresses for Couples

Weight also plays a significant factor. Heavy people require a more durable, and usually more firm mattress, which may impact the cost.

How to Save Money on a Mattress

We mattress pros know there are a few ways to do your wallet some good and save big on a mattress. We’ll let you in on our secrets.

Shop at the Right Time

There are certain times of the year that are ideal for buying a mattress. The best times to buy a mattress are

  • Black Friday
  • Cyber Monday 
  • Presidents’ Day
  • Memorial Day
  • Labor Day 

Many brands have big sales during these holidays so you can get more bang for your buck and save money on a mattress.

Use Coupons and Bundle Deals

Even when it’s not a holiday, many companies often have ongoing promotions and discounts so you can save some money on a mattress. Bundle deals are also a popular way to save money. If you’re getting a new mattress, you’ll probably need new sheets, pillows, or a bed frame at least too, so you might as well bundle them all from the same company to save money in the long run.

P.S. You can always check our mattress deals page to look for active sales and coupon codes.

Shop Online vs. In-Store

Shopping online from a direct-to-consumer (DTC) mattress brand helps cut out the cost of the middleman. Instead of shopping in a store where a salesperson is working towards a commission, you can conveniently browse online to find the mattress that’s best for you.

Read more: Benefits of buying a mattress online

If you’re nervous about buying a mattress before you try it–don’t worry! Many brands offer generous sleep trial periods during which you can sleep on the mattress in your own home and return it for a refund if you decide it isn’t right for you.

Choose the Right Materials

When looking for a mattress on a budget, you need to consider what you’re getting for that price. If you find a mattress under $500, it typically means the manufacturer cut corners or used cheaper materials (which means you’ll likely be waking up sore and achy, and looking for a new mattress in due time). But that might be fine if you’re looking for a temporary bed or something to put in your guest bedroom.

There are four different categories of common material used in mattresses, and determining what’s inside your mattress gives you an idea of how much it should cost. Here’s a quick rundown of the types of mattresses on the market:

Mattress Type Average Price Range
Memory foam $350–$1,000
Latex $900–$2,000
Innerspring $1,000–$1,900
Hybrid $2,000–$5,000

Foam and memory foam mattresses curve to your body and offer lumbar support, pressure relief, and great motion transfer (if your sleeping partner moves around a lot, you won’t feel it). Foam mattresses are the cheapest and most affordable to purchase.

Latex mattresses offer the longest lifespan of mattresses, so you get more bang for your buck. It provides the same benefits as foam, but with more bounce (and usually more eco-friendly materials). Latex mattresses are in the medium to expensive price range.

Innerspring mattresses are the traditional mattress often found in retail and specialty stores. It is made with at least one layer of spring metal coils—offering great bounce and edge support, but not always the best pressure relief. Innerspring mattresses are often in the medium to expensive price range.

Hybrid mattresses are a combination of memory foam and innerspring mattresses but can include other materials and combinations as well (like latex and memory foam). Hybrid mattress are typically the most expensive type of bed to buy.

Consider Your Mattress Size

Mattress costs vary depending on the size of your purchase, so it’s important to consider what size mattress you’ll really need to help you stick to your budget.

If it’s just you and your pup sharing the space, a twin XL or full-size mattress may do the trick. If it’s you, your pup, and your significant other, a twin size may be a tight squeeze. The most common mattress size for couples is a queen-size mattress. It allows space for both people to sleep comfortably, and will fit in most bedrooms.

King-size mattresses have gained more popularity in recent years because they offer even more space for couples, plus some extra room for pets or squirmy kids. California king mattresses are not as wide as kings but are longer. So if you happen to be super tall or just prefer more space while you sleep, then a king or California king might be worth considering.

It is worth noting that you’ll find a wider range of sheets and bedding that are made for queen-size mattresses, so decorating your bedroom can be more affordable.


Summary

Compare our top picks for the best cheap budget mattresses below:

Mattress Award Our Rating (Out of 10)
Casper Best Memory Foam Mattress (Editor’s Pick) 9.1
Bowery Hybrid by Brooklyn Bedding Best Budget Hybrid Mattress 9
Dreamfoam Elements Latex Best Pillow Top Mattress 8.4
Studio by Leesa  Best for Back Pain 8.7
Nectar Best for Side Sleepers 8.7
GhostBed Best Bed in a Box 8.6
Cocoon Chill Best Cooling Mattress 8.7
Tuft & Needle  Best Queen Mattress 8.7
Allswell Best King Mattress 8.2
Zinus Green Tea  Best on Amazon 7.8

 

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