SleepOvation mattress review (2022)

The SleepOvation mattress is designed specifically for back pain sufferers. Does it actually work?

Child climbing on SleepOvation mattress
(Image: © SleepOvation)

Tom's Guide Verdict

The SleepOvation mattress is made up of hundreds of individually wrapped coils, each with a soft foam cushion attached to the top, providing a very soft, cushioned sleep surface that contours to your exact shape. The aim is to provide custom support for those who suffer back pain, and while some of our testers found it worked a treat, others judged it far too soft to be comfortable. We think it's a divisive design – we've given it a 3.5/5, but this could be a 4 for those who love a soft mattress, or a 2 for those who prefer something firmer.

Pros

  • +

    Keeps hot sleepers cool

  • +

    Soft enough for side sleepers

  • +

    Enhanced pressure relief

Cons

  • -

    Edge support is poor

  • -

    Some may find it unsupportive

  • -

    Will be too soft for some tastes

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SleepOvation mattress review in brief

  • Personalized pressure relief is great for side sleepers
  • Does a great job of keeping sleepers cool at night
  • Edge support is poor and the mattress may be too soft for some sleepers

The SleepOvation mattress' unique design may well make it the best mattress choice for a certain sleepers. This mattress is like no other hybrid we've come across. Dreamed up by a sleep industry veteran and endorsed by chiropractors, the SleepOvation mattress uses freely suspended 3" pieces of foam above each individually wrapped coil. This allows for very precise support and a mattress that moves with the sleeper. 

SleepOvation mattress specs

Best for: Side sleepers, back pain sufferers (possibly)
Type: Hybrid mattress in a box
Firmness: 5.5/10
Materials: High density hybrid foam, carbon steel pocket springs, quilted fire cap, knit polyester and elastane
Depth: 12"
Sizes: Twin, Twin XL, Full, Queen, King, Cal King
Weight: 56-116lb
Trial Period: 100 nights
Warranty: 10 years

The mattress was designed to relieve back pain by promoting even weight distribution to alleviate pressure points and promote neutral spinal alignment. Whether this really is the best mattress for back pain is up for debate. Typically, we'd recommend a medium or firm mattress that offers custom support (so the SleepOvation is one for two on that), although it varies from sleeper to sleeper.

Some of our testers who suffer with back pain thought the mattress was exemplary and reported a huge improvement in pain levels. But our main tester, who is of a lightweight build and suffers with back pain didn't get on with the mattress at all, finding it too soft and uneven. Front sleepers will also likely find the mattress too soft. But it's a great mattress for side sleepers, with the individual coils and foam providing great pressure relief at the shoulders and hips. 

SleepOvation offers a 100-night trial, giving you plenty of time to try out the mattress and see if it's suitable for your sleeping requirements. This is a really unusual mattress that some sleepers will genuinely adore, but it's definitely not for everyone. We'll expand on all these points throughout our main SleepOvation mattress review to help you decide whether this is the right bed for you.

SleepOvation mattress review: price and deals

The SleepOvation mattress is aimed firmly at the luxury market, with a price tag to match. The RRP for a queen size is $2399, although the company has run offers and sales through the year. You can keep up to date with all mattress discounts in our mattress sale guide. 

Here's the official pricing for the SleepOvation Mattress:

  • Twin: $1,899
  • Twin XL: $2,049
  • Full: $2,199
  • Queen: $2,399
  • King: $2,599
  • Cal King: $2,599

As the SleepOvation Mattress is still relatively new at time of writing, we can't yet predict discount patterns going forwards. But we have seen a 15% discount along with 2 free pillows several times, with a queen size mattress being reduced from $2399 to $2040. We'd expect to see similar or even larger discounts when it comes to Black Friday mattress deals.

The SleepOvation doesn't really have any direct rivals, due to its unique structure. The TEMPUR-Adapt has a similar price tag at $2,499 for a queen, or, for a cheaper option Saatva's Classic mattress is $1,795.

See the SleepOvation mattress at SleepOvation (opens in new tab)

See the SleepOvation mattress at SleepOvation (opens in new tab)
The SleepOvation mattress features a unique design that works to distribute body weight and relieve back pain, but all this technology means it has a higher price tag. SleepOvation does offer discounts and free gifts – we've seen the queen mattress at $2,040 with two free pillows included. The mattress comes with a 100-night trial, 10-year warranty and free shipping and returns.

SleepOvation mattress review: materials

There's nothing quite like the SleepOvation mattress on the market, with its unique individualized support. It's quite different to many of the best hybrid mattresses on the market, so let's take a look at what's inside.

The SleepOvation mattress has a knit polyester and elastane cover, with an integrated quilted fire cap. This acts as an internal fitted mattress pad and gives the sleeper more padding and comfort. The cover is also removable, with a zip the whole way round the mattress to make it easy to get on and off and is washable.

Underneath the cover are the individual 3-inch cushion pockets made from high-density foam and covered in fabric. These freely suspended individual columns are designed to compress and move with the body. They are connected to the next layer of 8-inch carbon steel cushion pocket springs, which also support and help with movement through the night. 

SleepOvation's mattress is CertiPUR-US certified and GREENGUARD Gold Certified.

Exploded diagram showing SleepOvation mattress layers

(Image credit: SleepOvation)

SleepOvation mattress review: firmness and comfort

As we've already said, the SleepOvation mattress divided opinion amongst our testers. Our two main testers were of light and average weight respectively and both were combi sleepers, moving between their back and sides through the night. Neither of them enjoyed sleeping on this mattress at all, finding it far too soft and unsupportive. They didn't enjoy the way the mattress curved and dipped to shape itself to their bodies. However, both our main testers prefer sleeping on harder beds.

When we opened up testing to a wider range of sleepers and body weights, results were quite different. Heavier weight sleepers were impressed with how well supported they felt (SleepOvation says the mattress can support up to 350lb per sleeper), not feeling as if they were sinking too far into the mattress. Other sleepers described the mattress as like sleeping in a 'giant hug'. The freedom of each individual mini mattress meant that the mattress molded around them and left them feeling cradled and supported along their vertebrae. 

SleepOvation mattress in a bedroom

(Image credit: Jo Plumridge)

We do think it's a great choice for back pain sufferers providing they enjoy sleeping on a softer mattress. Our main lightweight tester, who suffers from back pain, actually found it exacerbated this because they felt so unsupported. But for those who enjoy the softer feel of the mattress, the individual suspension system of the SleepOvation actively supports each individual vertebrae in your spinal column, leading to a vast improvement in pain for many of our testers. 

SleepOvation mattress review: performance

We slept on a Full-size mattress for a month, looking at all the major areas of performance. We rated it on pressure relief, motion isolation, edge support, cooling and ease of set up; all of which should help you to decide if this is the right mattress for your sleeping style.

It's difficult to gauge the durability of a mattress after only sleeping on it for a short amount of time but with the luxury placing of this mattress and the higher price tag, we'd expect the mattress to have a decent lifespan. 

Setup

Score: 4.5 out of 5

The SleepOvation mattress is delivered free of charge in a 'back saver' box with wheels on the bottom to help move it about. Our Full mattress weighed 77lb, so it was a two-person job to get it up the stairs and onto the bed. Once on there it was easy to deal with. Lay the mattress on the bed before you cut the plastic and the mattress will expand quickly. However, we would recommend giving it at least 24 hours to fully expand. You can place the mattress directly on a base. There wasn't an excessive amount of packaging – just the box and the plastic packaging. 

Off-gassing

Score: 4 out of 5

Off-gassing, where organic chemicals and gasses are released from the foam as a mattress expands, is normal and to be expected when buying a mattress in a box. The chemical-like odor that's produced can last several days with some mattresses.

The SleepOvation mattress is made from CertiPUR approved foams, which are made without mercury, lead and other heavy metals, carcinogenic chemicals and phthalates. So, there's nothing harmful in the off gassing that's produced. However, the SleepOvation mattress did have a distinct smell for a couple of days, although this dissipated quickly after 48 hours. 

Pressure relief

Score: 4 out of 5

How did this translate to pressure relief for our testers? Our testers who enjoyed the unique feel of this mattress also found that it offered great pressure relief, helping to ease back pain with the mattress molding to each vertebra and helping to support the spine. Side sleepers also enjoyed the softer feel of the mattress, feeling that it supported them at the hips and shoulders. Our lighter weight sleeper didn't feel supported by the mattress, finding it too soft and yielding to provide pressure relief and we think the mattress is also far too soft for front sleepers. You could also consider the Purple mattress, which offers deep pressure relief with its unique Gel-Flex grid.

SleepOvation mattress with weight in the centre

(Image credit: Jo Plumridge)

Motion transfer

Score 4 out of 5

Although the SleepOvation mattress is very soft, its unique individual 'mini-mattress' design actually means that it absorbs motion fairly well. We performed a simple drop test with a 6kg and a wine glass to test how well the mattress isolated motion.

We dropped the weight from around 4-5 inches above the mattress, starting at 25 inches from the wine glass. At this distance the wine glass didn't move. At 10 inches the glass sometimes wobbled and sometimes fell over. And, at 5 inches it obviously always fell over.

The results of this test, plus our experiences of sleeping on the mattress suggest that the SleepOvation mattress is a good choice for those sharing a bed with a restless partner, but it's not the best on the market. Because of the way the mattress works, you can sometimes feel movement if a sleeper turns or flexes, although the compartmentalized design does make it easy to move about.

Temperature regulation

Score: 4.5 out of 5

The compartmentalized design of the SleepOvation mattress creates great airflow and heat dissipation, due to the channels between each coil and foam 'mini mattress'. These spaces really aid with keeping the mattress at a cool and comfortable temperature throughout the night, with the knit cover also providing a breathable surface to the mattress. 

We tested the mattress with a 4.5 tog summer duvet and fleece blanket in a bedroom that was around 15C. Our hot sleeping tester felt fairly cool throughout the night but did feel that they'd slept on other mattresses that were slightly cooler. This is most probably because the actual foam in the mattress has no additional cooling elements added to it. If you are a very hot sleeper we'd recommend checking out our guide on the best cooling mattresses, with mattresses such as the Nectar Premier Copper mattress, infused with heat-conductive copper fibers, gel memory foam and phase-changing material that adapts to your body temperature. 

Person's hand pushing on SleepOvation mattress

(Image credit: Jo Plumridge)

Edge support

Score: 3 out of 5

Edge support on the SleepOvation mattress isn't great. The compartmentalized design of the mattress means that it flexes a lot – and this includes around the edges. Our heaviest weight of 20kg sank 8 inches into the edge of the bed and we didn't feel that it was entirely stable there either. 

Because the edge of the bed doesn't have great support the overall available sleeping area of the bed is reduced, meaning you might want to consider going up a size if you like to spread out in bed. The edge of the mattress also isn't great to sit on with our testers feeling that they might slip off at any moment. And, if you sit on the edge of the mattress a lot, it is going to take its toll on the sides and their durability.

SleepOvation mattress with a weight on the edge

(Image credit: Jo Plumridge)

Durability

Score: 3.5 out of 5

It's obviously difficult to truly gauge the durability of a mattress over a short period of testing time but we did have some concerns with the projected longevity of the SleepOvation mattress. Whilst the mattress is well-made and uses high quality materials, the edge support of the mattress isn't great. If you sleep right up to the edge of the mattress, or utilize it for sitting on a lot, you could notice that it starts to sag a little and lose structure.

In fairness we wouldn't expect this to happen overnight and you should still get a good lifespan from the mattress. SleepOvation offers a 100-night trial and a 10-year warranty, which should mean that any problems are quickly resolved. You can also help extend the life of your mattress by investing in one of the best mattress protectors.

SleepOvation mattress review: customer reviews

SleepOvation's mattress is fairly new on the market, with just under 500 reviews on the brand's own website with an average rating of 4.6 out of 5. There are also a few reviews on TrustPilot, but these include both the mattress and pillows that the company sell and aren't divided up.

Common themes in the reviews from happy customers are how much better they are sleeping and the lack of aches and pains. Back pain and even sciatica are much improved on the SleepOvation mattress and reviewers also rave about how cool they're kept throughout the night.  

Like all mattresses though, reviews are a mixed bag. As with our own testers, some customers found the mattress way too soft and felt that it only exacerbated their back pain. The lack of edge support was also raised, with some customers feeling they couldn't sit on the edge of the bed without risking sliding off.

One other major positive that customers noted was SleepOvation's customer service, with reviewers saying that the company was extremely helpful and great at resolving issues.

Should you buy the SleepOvation mattress?

As we said right at the start of this review, the SleepOvation mattress is a bit of a divisive mattress. If you enjoy a soft bed, the SleepOvation could well be the mattress of your dreams. It's a great choice for side sleepers who want extra pressure relief around the hips and shoulders, and has attracted plenty of praise from back pain sufferers. 

The unique compartmentalized design of the mattress means that this is also a good choice for hot sleepers, with the channels between each 'mini mattress' keeping air circulating and the mattress cool. All the foams in the SleepOvation mattress are Certi-PUR-US and GREENGUARD Gold Certified, meaning the mattress is also a great environmentally friendly choice.

We wouldn't recommend the mattress for those who don't like a soft mattress or sleepers who sleep on their front. Instead, the WinkBed is a great choice for stomach sleepers as you can choose a firmer option for spinal support. If you prefer a more traditional hybrid the DreamCloud Luxury Hybrid has soft foam combined with springs for a cushioned feel.   

Jo Plumridge is an experienced mattress reviewer with several years' experience covering all things mattresses and sleep, and who tests memory foam, hybrid and organic mattresses. What Jo doesn't know about a boxed mattress isn't worth knowing, so naturally we tasked her with producing a series of features for Tom's Guide looking at all aspects of mattresses, from how to pick between latex and memory foam (it's a tricky one), to the seven mistakes people make when buying a mattress for the first time. When testing the DreamCloud Luxury Hybrid for Tom's Guide, Jo said: "I loved the back support and pressure relief it offered. Plus, it looks far more expensive than it is."