Is the Helix Dawn Luxe mattress any good?

Helix Dawn Luxe mattress
(Image credit: Future (Ruth Hamilton))

The Helix Dawn Luxe mattress is a luxurious hybrid designed especially for back or stomach sleepers who prefer a firm sleep feel. The 13.5 inch tall mattress features foam, coils and a pillow-top. Helix uses what it calls a 'latex alternative' in its stomach/back sleeper mattresses – it's bouncier and more responsive than memory foam. Helix rates it an 8-9 out of 10 in terms of firmness (we found it softer) and it sits in the premium price bracket, although evergreen sales do bring that price down. 

Helix Dawn Luxe mattress specs

Helix Dawn Luxe mattress

(Image credit: Helix)

Type: Hybrid
Firmness (1-10): 8-9 (officially), we rate 7-8
Height: 13.5"
Trial period: 100 nights
Warranty: 15 year limited
Price bracket: Premium
Materials: Foams, coils

We visited the factory and showroom of 3Z Brands, the parent company that owns Helix and the place where all its mattresses are made – including pouring the foams. During that time, we slept on a Helix Dawn Luxe for three nights, as well as running our usual tests for things like motion transfer, edge support and pressure relief, and comparing the results to those of other Helix mattresses in the showroom. For a full review, we sleep on a mattress for three weeks, so what you've got here is a shorter, hands-on review. 

This Arizona-based sleep brand's USP is that is makes a mattress for 'every body'. So the wider Helix range includes two soft mattress lines, two medium mattress lines, and two firm mattress lines. One of each pair is aimed at side sleepers and one is aimed at back or stomach sleepers, and then each line includes original (good), Luxe (better) and Elite (best) variants. The Helix Dawn Luxe is the middle, firm, back/stomach sleeper option. 

If you're interested in the rest of the range, you can check out our full Helix Midnight mattress review (the 'good', medium, side-sleeper version), or our Helix Dusk hands-on (the 'good', medium, back/stomach sleeper version). Alternatively, read on for a closer look at the Helix Dawn Luxe, how it compares to some of the rest of today's best mattresses, and who we would and would not recommend it to.

Is the Helix Dawn Luxe any good?

You'll find an in-depth look at the Helix Dawn mattress below, including the results of our performance tests. If you're in a hurry and just want the speedy version, here's who we would, and would not, recommend this model to:

Buy it if...

You're a combi-sleeper: The Dawn Luxe is officially aimed at back / stomach sleepers. We found the bouncy foams and a firmer feel made it a good choice for anyone who switches position at night – the softer upper level provides cushioning in a side-sleeper position, while the firmer lower tier ensures proper support when lying on your back or stomach. 

You want luxurious mattress: The Dawn Luxe is the upgraded version of the regular Dawn, and adds a soft Euro-top. This makes it look and feel more luxurious, but not in a fussy way (we're big fans of the clean, modern design of the Helix Luxe mattresses). To amp this up further, you could opt for the Elite version, although that's a little more traditional in its styling. 

You don't have loads of maneuvering room: The Dawn Luxe is a luxurious mattress, but it arrives in a compact box, which is ideal if you don't have lots of space in your home to get your mattress into place. 

Don't buy it if...

You need something ultra-firm: The Dawn is officially an 8-9 out of 10 on firmness, but we found that the plush Euro-top made it softer than that. The regular Dawn (with no pillow-top) is firmer, or head to our best firm mattress guide for other sturdy alternatives. 

You sleep hot: We only slept on this mattress for three nights, but during that time we found it could run slightly warm. If you know you sleep hot, consider upgrading to the GlacioTex cover, or swapping to a specialist model (our best cooling mattress guide has plenty of recommendations).

You like the cradling feel of memory foam: If you like a joint cradling feel, the Twilight Luxe has the same design but swaps the bouncy foam layer for a tier of memory foam. The pillow-top will dampen that sink-in feel a bit though, so you might be better with the regular Twilight for the full effect. 

Helix Dawn Luxe mattress: Price

  • Usually discounted by 20%, occasionally up to 25% off
  • Sits in the premium price bracket, regardless

There's never not a Helix mattress sale running. Generally, you can expect 20% off MSRP, but the brand will often increase that to 25% off over major sales events. Even with that bigger discount, this mattress sits in the premium price bracket – but there are plenty of far pricier options amongst today's best luxury mattresses. Shoppers will get two free pillows bundled in with their purchase.

Here's a look at the list prices for each size of the Helix Dawn Luxe mattress, and how much you can expect to actually pay:

  • Twin size: MSRP $1,373.80 (usually on sale for $1,099)
  • Full size: MSRP $1,599 (usually on sale for $1,998.80)
  • Queen size: MSRP $2,373.80 (usually on sale for $1,899)
  • King size: MSRP $2,299 (usually on sale for $2,873.80)

The Luxe sits is the middle option of three Dawn mattresses. A queen size of the basic version is $1,373.80 at ticket price but usually discounted to $1,099 (mid-range bracket). The top-end Elite in queen size is $3,436.30 but you'll typically pay $2,749 (premium, obviously). 

Helix is not unusual in having a mattress sale that runs year-round. Good times to check for the bigger 25% off discount include the Labor Day mattress sales in September, the Presidents' Day mattress sales in February, the Memorial Day mattress sales in May, and the 4th of July mattress sales. However, traditionally the very best time to shop is at the end of November – many brands offer their lowest prices of the year for their Black Friday mattress deal, running into Cyber Monday.

Helix Dawn Luxe mattress: Design

  • Coils zoned for extra lumbar support
  • Bouncy, responsive foam rather than memory foam
  • Option to upgrade to cooling GlacioTex cover

The Helix Midnight Luxe is a 13.5-inch tall hybrid mattress with six layers a Euro-top. We're big fans of the design of the Luxe – it looks high-end but in a clean, modern way, rather than being overly fussy.

You have two options when it comes to the cover. The model we slept on had a quilted cover made from Tencel. This comes as standard and has a brushed, super-soft feel. Alternatively, you can pay a little extra to upgrade to a specialist cooling cover made from GlacioTex fabric. We tried this version out in the showroom, but didn't sleep on it. It's designed to help with temperature regulation, but beware it will make your mattress a bit slippery. 

Side view of Helix Dawn Luxe mattress

(Image credit: Future (Ruth Hamilton))

Beneath this are three different foam layers, including one that defines the firm sleep feel, and another that Helix calls a 'latex-foam alternative'. The latter is a bouncier, more responsive kind of foam, and appears in all of Helix's back/stomach sleeper mattresses. (In the side-sleeper models you'll find cradling memory foam.)

These foams sit above a layer of individually wrapped coils, which are extra-firm around the central third (beneath the lumbar) as well as around the mattress perimeter. As with all the best hybrid mattresses, the springs help boost support, as well as providing space for air to circulate. Finally, there's a dense foam base layer. (If you're interested, our mattress foam types guide explains a bit more about the different kinds of foams and what they're designed to do.) 

Rendering showing internal layers of Helix Dawn Luxe mattress

(Image credit: Helix)

The cheaper standard Dawn model is shorter (11.5 inches), has a tight-top rather than a pillow-top, the order of the foam layers is different (not sure why) and it doesn't have the extra-firm coils in the central third.

Splash out on the Elite and you get the GlacioTex cooling cover as standard (an extra on the other two models) and a thicker pillow-top design. The upper level structure is different, too, with two mini-coil layers sandwiched between different foams. The whole thing is 16 inches tall. It's still a boxed mattress, but comes in two separate boxes, with some minor self-assembly required.

Helix Dawn Luxe mattress: Comfort & pressure relief

  • Officially a 8-9 out of 10 on firmness, we think more like a 7-8
  • Pillow top makes it softer / more cushioned than standard Dawn model
  • We found it comfy in all positions

Helix rates this an 8-9 out of 10 in terms of firmness, but we think it's slightly plusher than that. When we rested our 15lb weight in the centre, it sank 2.5 inches, which actually puts it into the medium bracket for firmness, but that's a bit misleading. The extra softness is due to the Euro-top, but if you press down on that plush top layer you can just about feel the firmer tier underneath. Overall, we judged it to be closer to a medium firm, at a 7-8 out of 10. 

Those seeking something more solid should opt for the regular Dusk, which omits the softer Euro-top, leaving just the firmer lower tier (when we tested that one with our kettlebell, it only sank 1.8 inches).

Helix Dawn Luxe mattress in our Sleep Editor's hotel room

Our kettlebell sank into the plush Euro-top, but there's a firmer tier beneath (Image credit: Future (Ruth Hamilton))

The Helix Dawn Luxe has a lightly quilted top but it's subtle. The Euro-top is cushioning, but don't expect a sink-in feel – the overall feel is fairly bouncy and responsive, thanks to those buoyant foams. 

We found it comfortable in all positions, but some side sleepers (especially those of light weight) might find it a bit firm. Our sleep editor found it suited her combi-sleep style perfectly, although her preference is for a firmer mattress so given the choice she would probably opt for the regular Dawn, without the pillow-top. 

Close up of cover on Helix Dawn Luxe mattress

Close up of Tencel cover (Image credit: Future (Ruth Hamilton))

Although personal taste does need to be factored in, a rough guideline is that the best mattresses for side sleepers are often a bit more plush (but still medium to medium-firm), allowing the shoulder to sink in a bit and preventing pressure from building up here, while still keeping the spine supported

Those who like to sleep on their stomach or sleep on their back should opt for something firmer (medium-firm to firm) to ensure adequate spinal support. Also factor in body weight – the lighter you are, the plusher your mattress can be. 

Helix Dawn Luxe mattress: Motion isolation

Motion isolation refers to a mattress' ability to absorbs movements on the surface. This is important if you share a bed and don't want to be disturbed by their movements, and can also help deliver a more restful night's sleep if you're usually prone to tossing and turning. 

To test motion transfer on the Helix Dawn Luxe, we placed an empty wine glass on the surface and dropped a 15lb weight at distances of 4, 10 and 25 inches away from it. The glass fell over at the two closer distances and wobbled at the furthest distance, but to be fair we think that was mostly due to the squishy pillow top creating an unstable base for the glass. Overall we thought this mattress absorbed motion well. 

Helix Dawn Luxe mattress: Edge support

To assess edge support, we measured the sinkage from our 15lb weight on the perimeter of the Dawn Luxe and compared it to the sinkage in the centre. We recorded a 2.3 inch drop on the edge, while the sinkage in the centre was 2.5 inches. This is officially a good result – you want edges that are the same or firmer than the centre.

We also sat and lay on the edges of the mattress to get a real-world impression. In those tests, we found the edge support fine but not amazing. This level of edge support will be fine for most people, but if you want to be able to use the edge of your bed to confidently push up off when getting up in the morning, for example, you might be better with a different model.

Close up of corner of Helix Dawn Luxe mattress

(Image credit: Future (Ruth Hamilton))

Helix Dawn Luxe mattress: Delivery & extras

Like all of Helix's mattresses, the Dawn Luxe comes with a 100-night trial period. This is about the shortest you'll find at any of the big bed brands. A few brands give you 200 nights, and a handful (Saatva, Nectar, DreamCloud) let you test the mattress out for a full year before fully committing. If during this time you decide the mattress isn't right for you, you can return it (after 30 nights) or request an extra topper that'll make the mattress softer or firmer (at any time). 

US shoppers get free delivery, to the door of your building, and unfortunately there's no option to pay to upgrade to a more comprehensive delivery. You'll probably need to rope in a second person to help you get your mattress onto your bed frame and unpacked - like all bed in a box models, this mattress comes vacuum-packed and rolled, which makes it easier to maneuver, but it will still be heavy. 

Helix's Luxe models come with a 15-year limited warranty, which covers all manufacturing defects. (For the record, you should be replacing your mattress every 7-10 years anyway.)

Ruth Hamilton
Homes Editor, TechRadar

Ruth is currently Homes Editor on Tom's Guide's sister site TechRadar, where she reviews and writes about everything from air fryers to vacuum cleaners to coffee machines, as well as the latest smart home gadgets. Prior to making the shift to Homes, Ruth was Tom's Guide's Sleep Editor. A certified Sleep Science Coach, she has tested more mattresses than her small flat can handle and will talk at length about them to anyone who shows even a passing interest.