In this guide, we’ll describe our picks for Best Mattresses of 2021. But before we can reveal the results, it’s important to understand the different categories of mattresses that we considered.
How a mattress feels is mostly determined by the internal construction of the mattress. There are several mattress types that are most common on the market.
These are the most traditional type of mattress. Innerspring mattresses use coils to provide spring and support. The coils respond to pressure from your body weight, and the thickness and number of coils helps determine the firmness of an innerspring mattress.
These mattresses are built with several layers of foam, and the exact composition and specifications can vary. One of the most common types involves a base of support foam with one or more comfort layers on top. The comfort layers are most often composed of memory foam or a latex-like foam.
These mattresses are made entirely of either natural or synthetic rubber.
Hybrid mattresses have a comfort layer made up of memory foam or latex foam on top of a base of innerspring coils.
Within each of these categories, there are many different brands, and each brand may produce multiple product lines with different types of layering, construction, and firmness. As a result, it can be difficult to make broad generalizations about which of these mattress types has the highest level of customer satisfaction. Instead, it may be more helpful to consider which mattress type is most likely to offer the kind of feel that you prefer. For further information about these mattress types, check out How to Choose a Mattress: A Buyer’s Guide.
Please see our methodology section to read more about our philosophy around mattress reviews. Just as a refresher, our methodology is based around a number of key factors:
More and more consumers are choosing to shop online, and online mattress sales have skyrocketed over the past few years. Because of the convenience that this offers, we chose to focus only on mattresses available to buy on the web.
We only considered mattresses that are available directly from the seller. We made this decision for several reasons. First, direct to consumer sellers don’t have the markup that comes from having a retailer as a middle man.
Second, customer service is much simpler when a buyer only has to deal with one company, and quality service has been a hallmark of the direct to consumer mattress industry.
Instead of just taking marketing claims about comfort, support, and durability at face value, we decided to look at the actual composition of the materials inside the mattress.
Firmness is subjective, but the vast majority of sleepers get the best support from something that is neither exceedingly firm nor soft. We looked for mattresses that generally were considered to be well-balanced and comfortable for the broadest range of people.
High-priced, “luxury” mattresses often deliver limited additional support or comfort relative to many lower-priced alternatives. If you’re like us, you want to get the best value, and for this reason, we carefully considered the price of a mattress relative to others of its type.
We analyzed numerous online review resources and drilled down to those that involved verified reviews and that utilized quality evaluation methods.
Though not our primary criteria, we prefer mattresses that are made in the USA where quality control standards are typically higher.
We put a high priority on customer service and were wary of any companies with a questionable track record. Though not a deciding factor, we also considered the company’s longevity. Many online mattress companies are new to the scene, so we gave some extra credit to companies that had a long history in this field.
Our Favorite Mattresses of 2021
|BRAND||MODEL||TYPE OF MATTRESS||FIRMNESS/FEEL||PRICE|
|Saatva||Innerspring||Soft, Medium, Firm|
|Tomorrow Sleep||Innerspring||Medium-Soft, Medium-Firm|
|Tuft & Needle||Foam||Medium-Firm|
|Novosbed||Foam||Soft, Medium, Firm|
|Sleep On Latex||Latex||Soft, Medium, Firm|
|Nest Alexander Signature Hybrid||Hybrid||Soft, Medium, Firm|
|Avocado Green||Hybrid||Medium, Medium-Firm|
Best Innerspring: Saatva Mattress
Innerspring mattresses are known for having a a huge range in terms of their overall quality. From this field of choices, one standout is our Best Innerspring Mattress of 2018, the Saatva Luxury Firm Mattress.
The Saatva Luxury Firm gets high marks in almost all categories and excels when it comes to materials and quality construction. Several key features make the Saatva our top innerspring mattress:
Highlights of the Saatva Mattress:
- Multi-layered coils: unlike many innerspring mattresses, the Saatva uses two separate sets of coils. The bottom layer is made up of stainless steel coils, while the top layer is composed of individually-wrapped, foam-encased coils. This is designed to provide strong support and durability.
- Foam cushioning: the mattress includes targeted foam support to improve performance. This includes a small foam layer for lumbar support as well as foam to boost edge support.
- Varying firmness levels: while most sleepers will prefer the Luxury Firm model, which falls right into the middle of the firmness range, Saatva offers models that are considerably more and less firm.
- Extended sleep trial: Saatva offers a 120 day sleep trial.
- Euro-style pillow top: extra comfort cushioning contributes to a plusher feel, and this material is sewn in underneath the mattress cover to provide a more uniform look and feel.
- Quality customer experience: Saatva has strong ratings from the Better Business Bureau and has a reputation for excellent customer service.
- Made in the USA: the mattress is built in the USA, and almost all of the mattress components are manufactured domestically as well.
Potential Concerns for the Saatva Mattress:
- Return shipping cost: if you decide to return the Saatva during the sleep trial, you won’t receive a full refund as the company deducts $99 for return transportation.
- Mattress size and weight: with all of its components, the Saatva is a large mattress. One version of the Luxury Firm model is 14.5 inches tall, which may require extra deep-pocketed sheets. In addition, the queen-size mattress weighs over 110 pounds. Though it has handles, it may be unwieldy to move.
Innerspring Honorable Mentions: Tomorrow Sleep and DreamCloud
- Tomorrow Sleep: This is a very competitively priced innerspring/hybrid with two comfort options that uses thinner memory foam in its comfort layers. For the cost, this hybrid mattress is one of the best value mattresses on the market. We do worry about the thinner comfort layers in both builds, but for the price, it’s hard to beat the Tomorrow Sleep
- DreamCloud: While this bed is a newer make, we feel it’s a strong performer in it’s category. We love the extensive use of memory foams throughout the DreamCloud, and the cashmere cover provides a high-end, luxury sleep experience. DreamCloud does not list the full specifications for the construction, which we would rather see to give it our full recommendation.
Best Foam: Leesa Mattress
When considering foam mattresses, we included two additional criteria for our methodology. The first is free shipping. Unlike bulky innerspring mattresses, most foam mattresses can be compressed, wrapped, put in a box, and shipped directly to your home. Since we hate tack-on fees, we only considered companies that ship your foam mattress to you directly with no extra charges. Second is a sleep trial with free returns. One of the downsides of buying online is that you can’t get a feel for the mattress until it is delivered. We only considered sellers who included a free sleep trial that comes with free pickup or returns if the mattress isn’t the right fit for you.
For foam mattresses, the quality of the foam is one of the most important factors in determining how comfortable and how durable the mattress will be. As a result, we only considered mattresses that met certain characteristics:
- A top layer (“comfort layer”) with foam of at least 3.5 pounds per cubic foot (PCF) of density. This density level helps ensure that the mattress will stand the test of time and won’t give out, causing the foam to sag and sink in ways that affect your spinal alignment.
- Support layers made up of foam with a density of at least 1.8 PCF. Some manufacturers install high-quality comfort layers but then cut corners on the support layers. This threatens the overall support level of the bed and can threaten the bed’s durability, so we ruled out any mattresses with weak support foam.
Our choice for the top foam-only mattress of 2018 is the Leesa Mattress. The Leesa is one of the most popular foam mattresses on the market and for good reason as it boasts a number of major features.
Highlights of the Leesa Mattress:
- Excellent comfort layer: The top layer of the Leesa mattress is made with Avena foam that has a density of 3.6 PCF. This foam material provides the support associated with traditional “memory foam” but with slightly more spring-back. This prevents sinking too deeply into the mattress, which can create a host of problems ranging from “sleeping hot” to poor spinal positioning.
- Strong supporting foam layers: The Leesa comfort layer is buttressed by a 2 inch layer of 3 PCF memory foam and a 6 inch layer of 1.8 PCF support foam. These foam layers boost the Leesa’s edge support relative to most memory foam. They also contribute to a more solid and durable mattress overall.
- 100 night sleep trial: Leesa allows you to try out the mattress for 100 nights with risk-free, no-cost returns.
- Free delivery: Delivery is included in the price, and the compressed mattress can be delivered in a box to your front door in just a matter of days.
- Company reputation and principles: Leesa has an A rating from the Better Business Bureau (BBB) and is set up as a B-corp, which means they include a social and environmental focus as part of their business principles. Leesa donates one mattress to people in need for every 10 that they sell.
Potential Concerns for the Leesa Mattress:
- Less contouring: The Leesa does not hug or contour to the body to the same extent as some traditional memory foam. Sleepers looking for maximum sink and hug may want to choose a different mattress.
- Single firmness option: With one level of firmness that we measure to be medium-firm, the Leesa won’t be comfortable for every sleeper. That being said, a medium-firm mattress is generally felt to be comfortable for a large range of people, so the Leesa should fit many.
Foam Honorable Mentions: Tuft & Needle and Novosbed
- Tuft and Needle: this mattress is a solid, no-frills option for people who want a well-made foam mattress at an affordable price point.
- Novosbed: featuring high-density foams and multiple firmness options, Novosbed offers excellent mattresses from a company with a good track record.
Best Latex: Sleep On Latex
Latex mattresses have a reputation for being extremely expensive, but our top latex mattress of 2018 offers all the benefits of latex without breaking the bank. That’s why our top choice is the SleepOnLatex Pure Green Natural Latex mattress, which has a number of selling points.
Highlights of the Sleep On Latex Mattress:
- Value: many all-latex mattresses cost between $2,000 and $5,000, but the SleepOnLatex Pure Green mattress can be purchased in queen size for $999.
- Responsible materials: SleepOnLatex uses only natural latex instead of synthetic latex, and their latex is certified by independent process-quality organizations.
- Height and firmness options: SleepOnLatex offers mattresses in two different heights (7” and 9”) and at three different firmness levels. This lets each customer select the mattress to best fit their needs; however, prices do vary based on thickness and firmness.
- No-risk sleep trial: SleepOnLatex offers a 100 night sleep trial with no-cost returns.
- Company reputation: though SleepOnLatex is a young company — founded in 2013 — they have nevertheless earned an A+ rating from the BBB.
Potential Concerns for the SleepOnLatex Mattress:
- Heavy for its size: despite having less height than many mattresses, the 9″ Firm in the queen size weighs over 140 pounds.
- Less contouring: latex mattresses do not provide the same level of hug or contouring of the body when compared to many other types of mattress. Sleepers looking for maximum sink and hug may want to choose a different mattress type.
Latex Honorable Mention: Zenhaven
- Zenhaven: while a more expensive option, this mattress is composed of three layers of Talalay latex, known for its quality and consistency.
Best Hybrid: Sapira
We evaluated many hybrid mattresses available in 2018, and our top choice is the Sapira hybrid mattress. Although the Sapira by Leesa is a relative new-comer, they offer the best of supportive innerspring with foam comfort layers for a quality sleep experience.
Highlights of the Sapira Mattress:
- Support and Pressure Relief: the dual comfort layer of this hybrid features cooling polyfoam and contouring memory foam over supportive innerspring.
- Engineered for comfort: Sapira is designed with five layers that support without pushing on pressure points and encourage comfort without the hot sleep effect that comes with many memory foam beds. The bed is engineered to provide the benefits of innerspring support and foam comfort with the drawbacks of neither. The bed includes:
Avena® foam: this patented component puts a layer of cooling foam between your body and the memory foam below it and gives a nice bouncy feel.
Memory foam: a 1.5-inch layer of this contouring foam offers excellent relief on pressure points but with less heat transfer because of the cooling foam above it.
Stabilizing foam: two 1-inch layers of quality foam sandwich the innerspring support layer for stability and reduced motion transfer.
Pocket coils: the support core is 6-inch individually sleeved steel coils in a premium grade of wire for support and bounce in the medium-firm range.
- Lengthy no-risk sleep trial: Sapira provides a 100-night sleep trial with a mandatory 30-night adjustment period. After that, Sapira gives a full refund and schedules pick-up and donation.
- Free shipping: Sapira ships to your door for free and also offers an optional white-glove delivery and set up for $99.
Potential Concerns for the Sapira Mattress:
- One firmness choice: the Sapira hybrid comes in only one firmness level, so it might not be a fit for every sleeper.
- Limited track record: As it’s newer to the market, Sapira has no established history of durability but the materials are high-quality and the company is transparent about the specifications of all components.
Hybrid Honorable Mentions: Nest Signature Hybrid and Avocado Green
- Nest Alexander Signature Hybrid: its combination of springs, memory foam, and a quilted top give this mattress solid support and a plush feel.
- Avocado: this hybrid focuses on quality of its materials with excellent high-density foams and well-architected pocket coils topped by a Dunlop latex comfort layer and an optional pillow top comfort layer.
Additional Resources and Guides
Best Mattresses for:
For those sleepers who weigh over 230lbs, check out the best mattresses for you
Have different sleeping preferences compared to your partner? Find the best mattresses that can accommodate both here
On a budget? Find the best mattress for your money depending on your needs
Experiencing lower back pain? Learn how to choose a mattress that will help alleviate that pain.
Interested in the other activities you'll do on your mattress outside of sleep? Find the best bed for amorous activities.
Interested in purchasing a mattress on Amazon? Check out our picks for the best mattresses available there.