Tom's Guide Verdict
The Stearns & Foster Estate is a best-selling hybrid mattress and despite the luxury price tag, this is actually one of the more affordable beds in the brand's growing range. You can choose between soft and firm, and both can be ordered with or without a pillow top (at an extra cost). We tested a firm Stearns & Foster Estate with pillow top and found it to comfortable. However, after four weeks of testing, we noticed a slight dip in the mattress where our testers slept. The edge support is excellent though, and you can try it for yourself with Stearns & Foster's 90-night trial. You'll get free white glove delivery (with old mattress removal), plus a 10-year warranty.
Comfortable to sleep on
Excellent edge support
Two firmness options
Upgradable to a pillow top
Free premium delivery service
An indentation formed on our model
Pillow top isn’t very 'pillowy'
Why you can trust Tom's Guide
Stearns & Foster Estate mattress review in brief
Stearns & Foster is a luxury American sleep brand and the company behind the famous Ritz-Carlton hotel bed. There are six different mattresses in its growing range, with the Stearns & Foster Estate being the most popular. This best-selling hybrid sits towards the more affordable end of the line-up, and it can be upgraded (at an extra cost) to a pillow top version. We called in a firm Estate mattress and opted for the pillow top, reviewing it over a period of four weeks to see if it's good enough to make our official best mattress guide.
The Stearns & Foster Estate hybrid mattress is priced from $2,299 when not in monthly mattress sales, with free premium shipping that includes removal of your old mattress and installation of your new bed. This luxury bed is made with premium memory foam and IntelliCoil innersprings, and we found it to be both comfortable and supportive. Edge support is particularly good in the Stearns & Foster Estate, making it ideal for people who need a mattress that's easy to get on and off.
Over a four-week period we conducted several key tests to determine the level of support and the mattress performed very well. You can only buy it in two firmness options, soft or firm, which seems strange considering medium-firm is the most popular mattress firmness. Instead the medium firmness option is reserved for the Lux Estate model. In addition to choosing soft or firm, you can buy a Stearns & Foster Estate with or without a pillow top for an extra $200.
Materials: Coils, memory foam, Tencel
Firmness: Firm (9/10) or soft (3/10) with optional pillow top
Trial period: 90 days
Warranty: 10 years
MSRP: from $2,299 at Stearns & Foster
The mattress comes in seven sizes: twin long, full, queen, king, split king, Cal king, and split Cal king. We tested a king size firm Estate with pillow top. Our main reviewer for this hybrid is primarily a side sleeper who occasionally sleeps on their back. The secondary tester usually sleeps on their stomach but also sleeps on their back sometimes.
Our primary tester, who generally prefers a medium-firm mattress, found this to be quite comfortable. Ironically, our secondary tester, whose stated preference is for a firm mattress, found this mattress less comfortable. Oddly, the pillow top is already showing two indentations where the testers slept. The Tencel moisture-wicking cover and ventilated coil systems inside the mattress, however, performed well during tests – we had no overheating issues.
In this review, we'll look at the Stearns & Foster Estate mattress in detail and unpick our test data. Here's what we discovered during our review process...
Stearns & Foster Estate mattress review: Price
- A premium mattress that retails for $2,399 in a queen
- Available with a pillow top for an additional $200
- Mattress sales discount the MSRP by $200 to $400
The Stearns & Foster Estate is the brand's second-cheapest model, but in the broader mattress marker, it sits in the premium price bracket. A queen retails for $2,399, regardless of whether you choose soft or firm. Note that the pillow top option adds $200 to each price.
Below is the current pricing for the Stearns & Foster Estate mattress (without pillow top):
- Twin Long MSRP - $2,299
- Full MSRP - $2,349
- Queen MSRP - $2,399
- King MSRP - $2,999
- Cal king MSRP - $2,999
- Split king MSRP - $4,598
- Split Cal king MSRP - $4,598
Over Black Friday 2023, we saw $200 to $400 off the list price of the Estate plus a free $300 VISA gift card, which was an excellent deal. Stearns & Foster tends to reserve its best deals for major holidays, similar to what we see with Tempur-Pedic mattress deals. Outside of those periods, the best time to buy is Thursday to Monday, as Stearns & Foster usually offers $300 worth of free accessories with any mattress set.
With every mattress purchase, you get free white glove delivery. They'll bring it into your home and set it up wherever you want. This also includes the removal of all packing materials, and they'll even haul away your old mattress if necessary. Sometimes Stearns & Foster offers free bedding and pillows or other promotions to sweeten the deal.
However, the extras are otherwise underwhelming for the price. Stearns & Foster includes a 10-year warranty plus a 90-night trial, which pales in comparison to the likes of Saatva, a luxury brand that provides a lifetime warranty and a one-year sleep trial with all of its mattresses.
See the Estate from $2,299 at Stearns & Foster
The Stearns & Foster Estate mattress is a coil and memory foam luxury hybrid mattress noted for its comfort and support. Choose soft or firm, with or without a pillow top. It comes in seven sizes, including two that are split for ultimate motion isolation. We normally see discounts of around $200 on the Estate, reducing a queen size to $2,199. You'll get a 90-night trial and free white glove delivery too.
Stearns & Foster Estate mattress review: Design
- A 14.5" foam and coil hybrid mattress
- AirVent system helps air circulate to prevent overheating
- Add a pillow top for a plusher sleep surface
Stearns & Foster handcrafts all of its mattresses in the US. The Estate is a hybrid mattress with a five-layer design. On top is a quilted stretch-knit Tencel cover to wick away moisture. Following that is a layer of TEMPUR-Indulge memory foam for deep pressure relief, with a weightless yet supported feeling. (Upgrading to the Lux Estate adds more TEMPUR-Indulge material along with a specialty cooling cover.)
Next come the springs. A layer of IntelliCoil innersprings is said to be the key to long-lasting comfort, while a high-density innerspring border gives the mattress its edge support and helps it maintain its shape. A system of AirVents and ventilated coils allow air to flow in and out of the mattress, so you don’t overheat.
The Estate comes in either soft or firm, with the option to add a pillow top for a plusher sleeping surface. The standard top has a tight-stiched surface for a more responsive feel.
There are also eight side handles so if you ever need to move or rotate your mattress, you'll be able to maneuver it with relative ease. There's no removable cover so make sure you wrap it in a mattress protector to help keep it clean.
Stearns & Foster Estate mattress review: Support & comfort
- We tested the firm pillow top version, rated an 8 out of 10 firmness
- Side sleepers may fare better with a softer version
- Already spotted indents after a month of use
We slept on a firm Stearns & Foster Estate mattress with a pillow top. The pillow top is only about a half-inch thick, but it does make the firm mattress feel slightly softer. Without the pillow top, Stearns & Foster rates the firm mattress 9 out of 10 on the firmness scale; with the pillow top, it's an 8 out of 10. The soft version is a level 3 firmness, and adding the pillow top drops that to a level 2.
Sleeping on the firm pillow top mattress was quite comfortable right from the start. Though it’s not the sort of mattress you sink into, and it doesn’t exactly mold to the body, we did feel aligned and well-supported. The surface doesn’t have a lot of give, but it does feel responsive.
We didn't use a mattress cover or topper, just a fitted sheet. We could feel the quilted texture of the mattress right through the sheet, but it wasn't bothersome.
Our main reviewer did not feel any pain around their hips, shoulders, or knees. However, when lying on their side for hours, they did feel some pressure buildup in the hip area – though it wasn't painful and didn’t cause any lingering soreness. Our primary tester rarely sleeps on their back, but does read for long periods that way. Lying on their back felt quite comfortable on this mattress.
Generally, a firm mattress is recommended for heavier bodies and back or stomach sleepers. Lighter bodies and side sleepers generally prefer a softer mattress. While both of our testers are on the lighter side, our primary tester is a side sleeper and our secondary tester is a stomach sleeper. Still, our primary tester found the mattress more comfortable than our secondary tester did, against conventional wisdom.
We conducted an objective test by placing a 15-pound kettlebell in the center of the mattress. It sank about two-and-a-quarter inches. This indicates a moderate level of pressure relief, which is to be expected for a firmer bed.
However, it’s worth pointing out that after only a month, there are already visible dips or indentations where each of our testers slept. This didn't necessarily affect their comfort but it's a concerning development for a premium mattress from a brand that takes pride in its high-quality materials.
Stearns & Foster Estate mattress review: Performance
- Not enough motion isolation to keep light sleepers undisturbed
- Superb temperature regulation – our testers remained cool
- Sturdy edges for sitting and pushing off
For four weeks, we slept on a firm king-size Stearns & Foster Estate mattress with pillow top. We evaluated it in all major areas of performance including motion isolation, edge support, and temperature regulation. Here's what we found out...
If you have more than one person sleeping in a bed, you’ll want a mattress that will isolate motion When one person moves, the other person would ideally experience as little of that motion as possible.
Our primary tester is a very light sleeper and feels the slightest bit of motion. While motion transfer was minimal, it was enough to disturb our primary tester’s sleep. Our secondary tester is a heavier sleeper and wasn’t disturbed by any motion transfer at all.
To gain a more objective view of the Estate's motion transfer, we conducted a drop test using a 15-pound weight and an empty wine glass. First, we dropped the weight four inches from the glass – the glass fell over immediately. Next, we dropped the weight 10 inches from the wine glass, which fell over after a brief hesitation. Finally, we dropped the weight 25 inches from the wine glass. The glass barely jiggled and did not fall over.
No mattress is going to offer complete motion isolation unless you choose a split mattress, which is two mattresses pushed next to one another. That is an option with the Stearns & Foster Estate mattress, though it’s not what we tested.
If you'd rather not split your sleeping area, a memory foam mattress is going to do a better job overall of isolating movement than a spring-based bed. Check out our Tempur-Pedic Tempur-Adapt mattress review for one example that excels in this area.
Score: 4 out of 5
Mattresses should be breathable, and draw heat away from the body. Excess heat can be a major sleep disruptor.
The Stearns & Foster Estate mattress has several features to promote airflow and temperature regulation. Generally, coils or springs are more breathable than foam, simply because there is space in and around them. This mattress has a ventilated coil system; the coils are surrounded by fabric full of holes. There are also external silver air vents to prevent trapped air.
We found these measures effective. Our testers had no issues with overheating on this mattress, even though both testers tend to sleep hot. The mattress always felt neutral or cool to the touch. While it didn’t actively cool our testers, the Estate didn't trap body heat while sleeping. If you need more cooling prowess, upgrading to the Lux Estate will yield a cool-to-the-touch cover and additional ventilation.
We tested this mattress during a cool midwestern fall, with the indoor temperature averaging in the mid 60s. We used 100% cotton or microfiber sheets, a very light quilt, and occasionally a light blanket.
Score: 4.5 out of 5
You want your mattress to have good edge support for several reasons. First of all, you want to be able to use every square inch of the mattress, right up to the edge. A firm, supportive edge allows you to sit comfortably on the edge and push off when you’re getting out of bed. Poor edge support can lead to premature sagging around the perimeter of the mattress.
Our reviewer found the edge support of the Stearns & Foster Estate quite good, bolstered by the high-density springs that surround the perimeter. We had no problems sleeping right up to the edge of the bed without any fear of falling over. We could comfortably sit on the edges to take our shoes on and off and were able to push off easily to get out of bed. The head and foot of the bed offered just as much edge support as the sides.
For a more objective look, we placed a 15-pound weight along the perimeter – top, bottom, and center – and measured how much it sank. The weight sank in two-and-a-quarter inches, which matches what we measured at the center of the bed. Ideally, the edges should not dip lower than the middle, where some sinkage is essential for pressure relief.
Score: 4.5 out of 5
Stearns & Foster Estate mattress review: Delivery & setup
- Mattress arrives flat, with free in-room setup
- Old mattress takeaway included
- No issues with off-gassing
Stearns & Foster offers free in-home delivery with old mattress takeaway if desired. Our reviewer was able to choose a date but not a specific time for delivery. On the morning of the chosen date, our reviewer got a call and a text giving a two-hour window for delivery. Our reviewer was able to press a number on the call, or text to confirm that the delivery window was okay – and if it wasn't our reviewer would have been able to call and change to a different time that day.
Stearns & Foster calls their delivery “white glove service.” While the delivery people did not literally wear white gloves, they did wear protective footwear inside the reviewer's home to avoid tracking in dirt. They placed the mattress right on the reviewer’s bed frame. At the reviewer’s special request, they put the old mattress into a different room rather than taking it away.
The mattress arrived fully formed. It was not boxed, folded, rolled, or deflated. There was no noticeable off-gassing, and it was ready to sleep on immediately.
Stearns & Foster Estate mattress review: User reviews
- 4.4 out of 5 stars from 300+ reviews at StearnsandFoster.com
- Lots of praise for comfort and support
- Some complaints about indentations
As of this December 2023, the Stearns & Foster Estate mattress has over 300 reviews on the brand website, averaging 4.4 out of 5 stars. Other sites across the web do sell this mattress and reviews average between 4 and 4.5 stars (out of 5).
Keep in mind that the reviewers may have the soft or firm model, with or without the pillow tops. Some reviewers name which model they purchased while others do not.
Many reviewers raved over how supportive and comfortable the Estate mattress is. Some even found relief from arthritis and back pain with this mattress. However, others complained that it was too hard, too soft, or too hot. (Remember that firmness is subjective.)
Just as our reviewer did, several shoppers indicated that the pillow top developed indentations after only a few weeks, which doesn’t speak well for its durability.
Should you buy the Stearns & Foster Estate mattress?
The Stearns & Foster Estate is a gorgeous luxury bed. We found the firm pillow top version of this mattress both comfortable and supportive, especially for back sleeping. Our side-sleeping tester found it more comfortable than our stomach-sleeping tester did, which is surprising. (Generally, softer mattresses are recommended for side sleepers.)
Edge support and temperature regulation are all above average. Motion isolation is one of its weaker points, particularly for light sleepers, though heavy sleepers may not be too bothered.
Given that this is a premium mattress, it's all the more surprising that the Estate formed slight dips where our testers slept after only four weeks. Perhaps it’s only the pillow top version that has this issue, but regardless, indentations shouldn’t form so quickly on a mattress that prides itself on being top-tier quality.
Stearns & Foster Estate mattress review: Alternatives
The Saatva Classic mattress tops our best hybrid mattress guide as well as our best luxury mattress guide, so it’s the one we’d recommend as an alternative. This mattress comes in three levels of firmness. It has a lifetime warranty and full year sleep trial period. It’s quite a bit less expensive than the Stearns & Foster Estate mattress, but it is noted for its comfort, support, and cooling properties. Read more in our Saatva Classic mattress review.
You can get even cheaper with the DreamCloud Luxury Hybrid mattress. The mattress is surprisingly luxe for the price, and offers excellent comfort and temperature regulation. Lighter-weight users may find it a little bit too firm, however. The lifetime warranty and 365-day sleep trial make it an appealing purchase. Learn more in our DreamCloud Luxury Hybrid mattress review.
If you have back issues, you might consider the Winkbed mattress. The hybrid design includes a lush pillow top, individually wrapped pocketed coils, gel-infused foam, and a targeted Back Relief system specifically designed to ensure proper back support. Yet it’s still substantially cheaper than the Stearns & Foster Estate mattress. Read our Winkbed mattress review for more information.
Karen is a world traveler, writer, podcaster, teacher, mom, wife, and occasionally a movie extra. She has written numerous reviews at iMore and CNET about home products and technology.