Our methodology wasn’t designed to determine the best mattress for everyone. We believe given the subjectivity of sleep that making that determination is impossible. Every sleeper is unique and has different support needs and perceptions of firmness and comfort that are usually impacted by feel (i.e. memory foam versus innerspring, etc.). This can also be influenced by other factors like a person’s body shape and weight, sleeping position, pillow type, mattress support base, time spent in bed, and whether the bed is shared with someone else or with a pet.

Because there’s no single best bed, our approach is to find mattresses that meet exacting standards for materials and whose design is likely to be supportive and comfortable for the great majority of people. We also looked at beds in a price range that would be accessible to most consumers.

There are many great mattresses available to consumers, but the sheer number of options can be overwhelming. That’s why we’ve narrowed down to just a few recommended mattresses. We’re aren’t saying that no one would enjoy the mattresses that didn’t make our list, but we can say that we’re quite confident that the majority of buyers will be very satisfied with the choices we’ve listed.

Our methodology is based around a number of key factors:

  • Available online. 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.
  • Direct to consumer. 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.
  • Materials. 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.
  • Moderate firmness. 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.
  • Price. 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.
  • Verified reviews. We analyzed numerous online review resources and drilled down to those that involved verified reviews and that utilized quality evaluation methods.
  • Made in the USA. Though not our primary criteria, we prefer mattresses that are made in the USA where quality control standards are typically higher.
  • Company track record. 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.
  • Too Many Choices. With the explosion in the bed in a box mattress space, multiple new companies are springing up every week and it can be nearly impossible for consumers to sort through that. In light of that, we’ve picked one great option per mattress type and listed runner ups so you don’t have to wade through hundreds of options to find what you’re looking for.