Best Mattresses of 2018

Shopping for a new mattress can be overwhelming, confusing and just plain annoying. But it doesn’t have to be.  We’ve compared the best mattress companies to bring you independent, non-biased reviews.

Today, The Mattress Nerd has grown into a resource that millions of people trust and turn to for answers about choosing the best mattress for their individual needs.  By clicking on the products below, we may receive a commission at no cost to you, the reader.

Customer Rating
Reason to Buy
Summary
Favorite Feature
Firmness
Type
Trial Period
Warranty
Best Overall Mattress

Leesa

Customer Rating
Reason to Buy

Best for most everyone! Great all-around mattress

Summary

Adapts to all sleep positions and most body types

Favorite Feature

Thoughtful design with multiple different layers for comfort, recovery, and support

Firmness

Medium Firm

Type

Foam Combo

Trial Period

100 Days

Warranty

10-year limited warranty

Best Sleep Quality

Sapira

Customer Rating
Reason to Buy

Best for someone who wants the best of the best and is willing to pay a little extra for it

Summary

Luxury hybrid mattress great edge support and motion isolation

Favorite Feature

1,000+ individually wrapped pocket springs offer a unique conturing feel

Firmness

Medium Firm

Type

Hybrid: Pocket springs and foam

Trial Period

100 Days

Warranty

10-year limited warranty

Nectar

Customer Rating
Reason to Buy

Best for someone that wants a bed-in-a-box but is on a budget

Summary

Affordable quality mattress with excellent trial period

Favorite Feature

Combining a Tencel cover with gel technology throughout multiple layers offers cooling effect than traditional memory foam

Firmness

Medium firm

Type

Gel Memory foam

Trial Period

365 Days

Warranty

Limited lifetime warranty

Saatva

Customer Rating
Reason to Buy

Best for someone who likes the traditional mattress but doesn't like the price tag

Summary

Customizable luxury hybrid mattress

Favorite Feature

Built using a "coil on coil" construction, which is typically only offered in very high-end mattresses

Firmness

Available in plush, luxury firm, and firm

Type

Hybrid: coil on coil and memory foam with euro pillow-top

Trial Period

120 Days

Warranty

15-year limited warranty

DreamCloud

Customer Rating
Reason to Buy

Best for someone who wants to try a luxury mattress but needs reassurance with a great return policy

Summary

Luxury hybrid mattress with cradling technology and plush comfort

Favorite Feature

Massive 15-inch profile with 8 different layers, all with a different functions to help with sleep quality

Firmness

Medium Firm

Type

Hybrid: Memory foam + coils

Trial Period

365 Days

Warranty

Limited lifetime warranty

How do we choose?

We take a lot of naps.  It’s tough work, but someone has to do it!  In all seriousness, we put these mattresses through the wringer.  We evaluate on a myriad of different factors including pressure relief, spine alignment, motion transfer, and cooling/airflow.

Not only is the mattress itself important, but so is the purchasing process.  We take into account the ease of ordering, how shipping is handled, the ease of setup, and overall customer service.

We set try to make the mattress buying experience simple, stress-free, and maybe even a little fun.

What to look for in a mattress

How to buy a mattress: the major factors

If you can find a mattress that keeps you in proper alignment while not causing any pressure to your body, you’ve found a good mattress for you. There are some other minor factors to look for. They include motion transfer, edge support, and temperature.

There are two major factors to look for in a new mattress. They are support & comfort.

  • Support: You want the mattress to hold you in proper alignment from head to toe, so you don’t wake up with a back ache.
  • Comfort: You don’t want the mattress to cause pressure to your body, which causes tossing and turning, which means you wake up tired.

Minor Factors

There are several other criteria that you can look for when searching for a mattress.

  • Motion & Separation: If you share your bed, you want to minimize motion transfer. If your partner gets in or out of bed, or changes positions, you run the risk of being woken up if the mattress transfers too much of that motion to your side of the bed.
  • Temperature: Another issue some people have is heat retention of the mattress. Most good mattresses these days have features to help mitigate this (advanced foams, phase change materials, ventilation, etc). The biggest risk here is with cheap memory foam mattresses
  • Edge Support: You want a strong edge support on your mattress, particularly if you sleep near the edge of the bed, or sit on the edge of the bed often. Most of the average or better innerspring mattresses use the upgraded foam encasement around the edge, but some of the very cheapest mattresses just use a steel rod on the side. Foam encasement is better. Memory foam mattresses don’t often have a separate edge support because of the nature of the foam (it’s designed to take the shape of your body, even when you’re just sitting on it)

 

Types of Mattresses

You might have noticed that in all of this time, I haven’t mentioned any details about the construction of the mattresses. I’ve said very little about coils, types of foam, etc. Truth is, this is possibly the least important part of the guide, but it’s still good to know.

There are three basic categories of mattresses.

  1. Specialty foam. These will usually be made of different types of foam. Two categories of specialty foam are latex and memory foam.
  2. Innerspring. These are the traditional mattresses with springs (or coils if you prefer). They can be all tied together or individually wrapped.
  3. Hybrid. In recent years, brands have come out with “hybrid” options for people interested in certain aspects of both foam and innerspring. They have features similar to a specialty foam mattress but on an innerspring support.

Beyond these three major categories, you’ll find a few other types of mattresses. Some manufacturers make air mattresses, that use air chambers instead of coils for the support. Also, there are still some waterbeds around, in which water is used for the support. I honestly don’t know as much about these two categories of mattresses, and they make up a small part of the mattress industry, so I won’t go into them here. The biggest air mattress manufacturer is Select Comfort with their Sleep Number bed. There are several small waterbed manufacturers.

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How much to spend

Many people who I talk to have no idea what a mattress is supposed to cost. They hear specials on the TV along the lines of “pillowtop mattresses, queen size sets for only $299!” and they assume that it’s for a good quality every night use bed, and there are options even less than that.

The mattress industry does itself a disservice by advertising like this, because that’s usually the absolute rock bottom as far as price and quality go.

I’ll give a breakdown of what you can expect at each price range.  These prices are for queen sized mattress and boxspring sets. Subtract ~100-300 for the boxspring, or multiply by ~50% for a king. (Note: These are what I consider the “real” prices for the mattresses, when they’re on sale. Retail prices might be much higher)

$0-200: Unlikely to find a decent mattress at this price.

$200-400: These are your basic guest room mattresses. Expect to see those 420 coil Bonnell units I warn about. These may or may not have a pillowtop, and will have a 1 to 5 year warranty. Can be used by an adult for every night use in a pinch, or if you’re on a really tight budget, but you don’t get much in the way of comfort or support.

$400-600: These range from some of the nicer guest room mattresses to maybe the bare minimum for every night use by an adult. You will either get nicer foams on the top than the cheaper ones, or stronger coils, but not usually both.  These tend to be good for college students on a budget.

$600-1000: These are about the average range for every night use mattresses.  You will get the better coil systems and advanced foams. This is also the price range that the lowest priced memory foams start appearing. The direct-to-consumer mattresses  generally fall somewhere around this price range. If you find a memory foam mattress for significantly less than $600, you should be very skeptical.

$1000-1500: These mattresses will be the entry level of the luxury mattress. The coil systems might be a little more advanced, or they’ll use thicker layers of the specialty foams. The foam mattresses will be a bit thicker, and you start getting into the big name brand memory foam models.

$1500-2500: Mattresses at this price range will have just about everything you could hope for in a mattress. You’ll get the thickest layers of the best foams, strong coil systems, and longer warranties.  If you’re spending $2,000 on a mattress, you’re very likely to be getting a great one.

$2500-5000: There’s honestly not much you can add to a mattress to get to this price range. You might start hearing about materials such as “New Zealand wool” and “Mongolian horse hair.” Only spend this much on a mattress if the ones at the lower tiers don’t keep you in proper alignment or relieve pressure as well and you have the money to spend.

$5000+: I’ve only ever tried one mattress in this range, a Duxiana, and it did not feel as good as mattresses for 80% less money. There’s only so much you can add to a mattress before it’s counterproductive.  I’d take a $3000 mattress with a $2000 adjustable base over a $5000 mattress any day.

Ready to take the next step? Check these out:

FAQ

These are some of the most frequently asked questions in the world of mattresses:

Q. What is the best type of mattress?

A. Mattresses are not one size fits all.  There are a lot of factors to think about.  What position do you sleep in?  Do you sleep alone or with a partner? Are you generally hot or cold when you sleep? Do you like to sink or or prefer a firmer surface. The reality is, it’s going to come down to personal preference.  Luckily for you, there are TONs of options to choose from.

Q. How often should you replace your mattress?

A. There is another very subjective question.  It really depends on the type and brand of mattress that you have.  Like most goods, mattresses range in quality.  A high quality mattress should last upwards of 10 years before it starts breaking down and losing it’s structural integrity.  Unfortunately, there are many mattresess that only last a few years.  Generally speaking, it may be a good time to start thinking about a new bed every 5 or so years.

Q. Do I need a boxspring?

A.   Well, you need to put the mattress on something. But you have options.  Anything that is sturdy and offers support may work, even if that is the floor!  A platform bed is another popular option, especially if you like a lower height of the mattress surface.  If you don’t mind spending some extra cash and want some flexibility, check out an adjustable base.  These will allow you raise one or both sides of the mattress to help find a comfortable position, or to making watching TV easier(all though watching TV before bed is not recommended!).

Q. Should I clean my mattress?

A. Yes. This is a piece of furniture that you spend A LOT of time on.  So of course it’s a good idea to keep it clean.  The easy solution is to keep your sheets fresh.  It is recommended that you change sheets every week or so.  The mattress itself?  It may not be bad idea to give it a vacuum every now and then.  For more in-depth cleaning, refer to your manufacturer guide for best cleaning approaches.  Mattresses are made of a variety of different materials and require different methods of cleaning.  You can always consider a mattress protector too!

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