The best mattress 2024: Reviewed by certified sleep experts

The DreamCloud is the best mattress for most people and here it's photographed on a wooden bedframe placed in a dark blue bedroom and with a couple laughing and sitting on the mattress
(Image credit: DreamCloud Sleep)

The best mattress for you is one that supports your body, relieves pressure points and keeps you comfy through the night. There are several types of mattress to pick from, including memory foam, hybrid, cooling and organic, and we spend hundreds of hours a month testing a wide range of them. Only the very best make this guide, and we've included reviews of each model so that you can see our full test data.

When reviewing mattresses, we test all key areas including pressure relief, support, temperature regulation and motion isolation. We also enlist a wider review panel of people with different body types and sleep styles to help us create a balanced overview of each mattress. We then use that data-backed research, plus customer reviews, to inform our best mattress rankings.

Our certified sleep coaches have also shared their advice on how to choose the best mattress for your sleep position. A good mattress can cost you several hundred pounds, but thankfully there are sales running most months to help you save up to 50% on the RRP. Our best tip? When buying a mattress online, only buy one if it comes on a sleep trial period, as you'll need at least 30 nights to give your body time to get used to the new mattress.

The best mattresses 2024 – tested by experts

Why you can trust Tom's Guide Our writers and editors spend hours analyzing and reviewing products, services, and apps to help find what's best for you. Find out more about how we test, analyze, and rate.

Recent updates

After analyzing our testing data, we've added four new mattresses to the guide. The Simba Earth Escape Mattress replaces the discontinued Simba GO, while the Panda Hybrid Bamboo Mattress takes best cooling, the Zoma Memory Foam Mattress earns best pressure relief, and the Brook + Wilde Suprema Mattress is rated best luxury. We've also removed the Otty Original Mattress (previously best motion isolation).

The best mattress overall for 2024

The best mattress in the UK right now

Specifications

Type: Hybrid
Firmness (1-10): 7
Height: 30cm
Trial: 100 nights
Warranty: 5 years
Price bracket: Luxury
Materials: Dunlopillo latex, natural wool, 1,184 pocket springs

Reasons to buy

+
Excellent pressure relief
+
Superb motion isolation
+
Unbeatable handcrafted quality

Reasons to avoid

-
Very tall and heavy
-
Short warranty

We rarely award a mattress full marks, but the Relyon Bridgwater Dunlopillo Latex aced all of our tests. It's the best mattress for any person seeking a bed that will last for years to come, all while offering excellent pressure relief to reduce aches and pains during sleep. 

The motion isolation is superb too, making this a good choice for couples who normally wake each other up with their in-bed movements and restlessness. During our three week testing period, the Relyon Bridgwater Dunlopillo Latex mattress quickly absorbed all motion, preventing it from transferring from one side to the other, enabling you to enjoy deeper sleep.

Relyon is a heritage brand that makes handcrafted mattresses to a very high standard, and the Bridgwater Dunlopillo Latex bed is a great example. We found very little if anything to fault with the build, and felt the difference in material quality as soon as we laid down on the mattress. It's made from natural and toxin-free materials including natural latex and wool, plus 1,184 pocket springs to boost comfort and support. 

Latex and wool are both naturally cooling materials, so we recommend the Relyon Bridgwater Dunlopillo Latex as the best choice for people who overheat during sleep too. We didn't experience any heat build-up during the review period, and it remained cool to the touch during sleep. 

In terms of feel, this is a classic medium-firm bed but that opulent pillow top offers an instant hit of softness that side sleepers may appreciate. You won't sink into this mattress, but there is a little bounce, similar to what you'd find with more traditional innerspring mattresses. The only downside for us is the short warranty (only five years) and it's hardly ever on sale (a double normally costs £1,299). Otherwise the Relyon Bridgwater Dunlopillo Latex is an excellent mattress that should suit most sleepers who have the budget to afford it. 

The best affordable mattress

The best affordable mattress from a well-known brand

Specifications

Type: All-foam
Firmness (1-10): 6.5
Height: 25cm
Trial: 200 nights
Warranty: 10 years
Price bracket: Mid-range
Materials: Memory foam, other foams

Reasons to buy

+
Dreamy body-contouring comfort
+
Good motion isolation
+
Excellent choice for side sleepers

Reasons to avoid

-
Heavier bodies may need a firmer bed
-
Too soft for back/stomach sleepers
-
Sleeps a little warm

If you're on a tighter budget, the Emma Original is our best value mattress pick. Regular discounts take the popular mattress in a box down into the the lower-mid range price bracket, it's almost always the cheapest mattress on our list, and excellent value for money. 

After testing it for an extended period of time, we can easily recommend this as an excellent choice for side sleepers. It has a slightly softer sleep feel, with thick layers of memory foam that hug the joints and prevent pressure build-up in this position. While it's suitable for back and stomach sleepers, you might want to consider something firmer such as the Nectar (#5), for extra support. 

During our testing process we also found this ample cushioning means the Emma Original is great at absorbing motion, so if you share a bed with a restless partner, or someone on a different sleep schedule to you, their movements shouldn't disturb your slumber. One potential downside to be aware of is that Emma beds can trap body heat. 

While it was absolutely fine for the majority of our testing period, we did note that on hot nights it did start to feel uncomfortably warm. If you sleep very hot, consider a hybrid like the DreamCloud #3 or the Emma Premium mattress, which adds tall springs. These almost always sleep cooler than all-foam models, as the springs create space for air to circulate within the mattress, although they do generally cost more.

Offers vary depending on when you buy, but the best Emma mattress deals knock around 50% off, and take the price of a double down to around £380 (lower mid-range), which is excellent value for such a high-quality all-foam model. 

Emma Original mattress: £339 £271.20 at Emma

Emma Original mattress: from £339 £271.20 at Emma
This month you can save 20% on the Emma Original, reducing the price of a double to just £399.20. This is a similar price to previous deals, but, unfortunately, the RRP has risen while the discount hasn't. It's still a brilliant price for a top-rated comfy memory foam bed, so don't hesitate to buy this one if you're looking for an excellent value boxed mattress.

The best mattress for couples

The best mattress for couples and bed sharers

Specifications

Type: Hybrid
Firmness (1-10): 6.5
Height: 28cm
Trial: 365 nights
Warranty: Forever
Price bracket: Upper-mid
Materials: Memory foam, other foam, pocket springs

Reasons to buy

+
Excellent pressure relief
+
Comfortable and supportive
+
Best for stomach and back sleep
+
Forever warranty

Reasons to avoid

-
Only four sizes

Although the name is probably better known in the States, the climate neutral DreamCloud Luxury Hybrid is one of the best mattress in the UK right now. We've always admired the US DreamCloud and were extremely impressed with the UK version: this medium-firm hybrid mattress delivers a luxurious sleep surface, with plush cushioning and a versatile feel that makes it great for couples.

There's a thick tier of foam at the top of the mattress, which offers a hugging, body contouring feel and excellent pressure relief. The lower level of pocket coils ensure you don't sink in too far, and a plush, quilted cover amps up the feeling of luxury. The medium-firm sleep feel (6.5 out of 10), will suit most sleep styles and body types, although it is on the softer side, so some back and stomach sleepers, as well as anyone over 16 stone, should consider something firmer. 

This mattress performed well in all of our tests. Excellent motion isolation makes it suitable for anyone who shares a bed with a wriggler; even if your partner tosses and turns during the night, they shouldn't wake you up. Reinforced springs around the perimeter ensure the sides are sturdy. You can sleep right up to the edge without any fear of falling out of bed, meaning there's more room for two people to stretch out. Both our hot sleeper and our cold sleeper found the DreamCloud kept them at a comfortable temperature throughout our 5-week test period. 

Factoring in a permanent DreamCloud mattress sale that knocks around 50% off RRP, this is an upper mid-range model, and it more than justifies that price tag. As well as high build quality and a luxurious feel, the extras help this mattress stand out from competitors. A 365-night sleep trial matches the longest you'll find anywhere and there's a forever warranty for extra peace of mind. Production is certified carbon-neutral and DreamCloud works with the British Heart Foundation to recycle old and returned mattresses.  

DreamCloud Luxury Hybrid mattress: £949 £409 at DreamCloud

DreamCloud Luxury Hybrid mattress: from £949 £409 at DreamCloud
The latest DreamCloud mattress sale will save you up to 57% on the DreamCloud Luxury Hybrid, plus you'll get a free bedding set worth up to £150. The free bedding bundle comprises a fitted sheet, duvet cover and two pillows, boosting your value for money. A double size DreamCloud costs £710, which is excellent value for money for a hybrid mattress of this quality. Plus, you get a year's sleep trial and a forever warranty to boost your value for money further.

The best sustainable mattress

The best eco-friendly mattress

Specifications

Type: Hybrid
Firmness (1-10): 8
Height: 28cm
Trial: 200 nights
Warranty: 10 years
Price bracket: Luxury
Materials: Natural wool, hemp, flax, Aerocoil springs, springs

Reasons to buy

+
Head-to-toe support
+
Eco-friendly build
+
Luxurious finish

Reasons to avoid

-
Top firm for side sleepers
-
Average edge support

The Simba Earth Escape Mattress proves that sleep brands can prioritise sustainability without sacrificing comfort. Crafted using natural materials – such as wool, flax, and hemp – combined with some high-tech innovations – sonic welded springs, anyone? – the Earth Escape hybrid provides quality sleep for eco-conscious stomach and back sleepers.

Creating cushioning using natural materials such as wool, the Earth Escape lacks the ‘hug’ of foam, instead providing a gentle contouring that helps relieve pressure at the hips and shoulders. Below this are several layers of springs, including a layer of Aerocoil micro springs, adding a responsive support that can be felt across the body. But don't worry about motion transfer – the base spring layer uses glue-free sonic welding to limit how much movement can travel across the mattress. 

These open springs and natural materials also contribute to the high-quality temperature regulation, but the edge support is only average. If strong edges are important to you, the Relyon Bridgwater Dunlopillo Latex mattress at #1 is a better choice.

During our testing process we found that while the Earth Escape initially felt very firm, the surface gradually softened with use. We rate it around 8/10, finding it most supportive for back and stomach sleepers. Side sleepers and those with a lightweight build might prefer something softer, like the Emma Original (#2).

The USP of the Simba Earth Escape is its eco-credentials. Simba is the UK’s first B-Corp sleep brand and the Earth Escape is 100% recyclable. Handcrafted by specialists, the mattress looks and feels luxurious. Good news, as it’s one of the most expensive beds in this guide. Simba mattress sales are rare, but they do pop-up occasionally, and with a 200-night trial and free VIP delivery, the benefits are pretty good. 

The best memory foam mattress

The best memory foam mattress with a forever warranty too

Specifications

Type: All-foam
Firmness (1-10): 7
Height: 25cm
Trial: 365 nights
Warranty: Forever
Price bracket: Mid-range
Materials: Memory foam, other foams

Reasons to buy

+
Isolates motion from your partner
+
Good balance of softness and support
+
Regulates temperature well

Reasons to avoid

-
Too firm for some lighter bodies
-
Not too much contouring

The Nectar Memory Foam Mattress is the best option for anyone wanting a firmer all-foam mattress than the Emma (#2). As a medium firm mattress, during mattress testing we found that it supports most sleeping positions (though it’s especially comfy for side sleepers) and hits that sweet spot between all-body comfort and proper spine alignment. 

Don't expect the full memory foam 'hug' feel, but there is a light contouring effect that relieves pressure around the back, hips and shoulders, and is very comfortable for back and stomach sleepers. It'll also suit some side sleepers, though those of lighter weight might get on better with the Emma. 

Unusually for an all-foam mattress, the Nectar doesn’t overheat – our lead tester is a hot sleeper yet she didn't end up a sweltering mess after nights on the Nectar. It's a good choice for couples, too especially if you or your partner toss and turn a lot in bed. Why? Because it absorbs motion well, so you won’t feel the other person moving so much. There’s also decent edge support, so you can both spread out and enjoy your wider mattress space. 

Regular Nectar mattress deals mean you'll never need to pay RRP, and should be able to pick up a double for under £500 pretty much year-round. The extras are excellent too: Nectar also runs a 365-night mattress trial and comes backed by a forever warranty. 

Nectar Memory Foam Mattress:£475£380

Nectar Memory Foam Mattress: from £475 £380 at Nectar
Nectar has a habit of fluctuating the RRP, so while this 20% discount isn't the biggest percentage drop we've seen from the brand, the final price is as good as it ever is. A double costs £480 and with a 365-night trial and a forever warranty included, it's a cracking deal. It's also the top choice for anyone who's a fan of straightforward deals – Nectar has recently been experimenting with an AI chat box that encourages haggling, so this is significantly simpler. 

The best mattress for back pain

Best mattress: REM-Fit 500 Ortho Hybrid Mattress

(Image credit: REM-Fit)
The best mattress for back pain

Specifications

Type: Hybrid
Firmness: 8
Height: 25cm
Trial: 100 nights
Warranty: 10 years
Price bracket: Mid-range
Materials: Memory foam, other foams, coils

Reasons to buy

+
Specialist orthopedic model
+
Brilliantly supportive
+
Isolates motion well

Reasons to avoid

-
Some pressure build-up when side sleeping
-
Not much body contouring

If you suffer from back pain, check out the REM-Fit 500 Ortho Hybrid. This specialist orthopedic mattress combines tall, motion-absorbing springs with lightly cushioning memory foam. The brand rates it a 9 out of 10 in terms of firmness, and although we think it's more like an 8, it still delivers brilliant edge-to-edge support, zoned to provide softness and firmness exactly where it's needed. All of that makes it a good bet for anyone struggling with a sore spine, based on the general rules for back pain sufferers (although it's worth making clear that exact needs may vary from person to person). 

It follows that there's not a ton of body contouring from the memory foam layers here, which might cause pressure build-up in the shoulders when lying on your side. If you don't have a bad back and would prefer more of a hugging feel, check out the Emma (#2).

Despite the firmer, more responsive sleep surface, this mattress delivers excellent motion isolation – good news if you have a wriggly bed-mate. During our review period we were also impressed with the temperature regulation, meaning it's also suitable for hot sleepers. At RRP it's a premium mattress, but like most of the models on this list, it's never sold at that price. You can usually pick it up for a mid-range price, and it's excellent value. 

The REM-Fit comes with a 100-night trial, which is on the shorter side, but should still be long enough for you to give it a proper try-out. If you want a longer trial, check out our Eve Premium Hybrid review for a look at a comparable model – this mattress has a similar sleep feel and despite not being a specialist orthopedic model, should work for those who suffer back pain. The trial is much longer at 365 nights, and when on sale it's a similar price to the REM-Fit (beware motion isolation is not as good, though).

REM-Fit Ortho 500 Hybrid Mattress: £879£483.45 at REM-Fit

REM-Fit Ortho 500 Hybrid Mattress: from £879 £483.45 at REM-Fit
The REM-Fit mattress sale will save 45% on the Ortho 500 Hybrid Mattress, taking a double down to £598.95. But you do need to add a REM-Fit Snow Pillow to your order to get that discount, so the final price is £653,41. This isn't the best deal we've seen from REM-Fit, but it's still a decent saving on a pain relieving mattress.

The best mattress for cooling

The best mattress for temperature regulation

Specifications

Type: Hybrid
Firmness (1-10): 7.5
Height: 27cm
Trial: 100 nights
Warranty: 10 years
Price bracket: Luxury
Materials: Bamboo cover, bamboo-infused foam, orthopaedic foam, springs, memory foam

Reasons to buy

+
Excellent temperature regulation
+
Comfortable spinal support
+
Free white glove delivery

Reasons to avoid

-
Too firm for lightweight side sleepers

If you tend to wake up in the night feeling clammy and uncomfortable, the superior temperature regulation of the Panda Hybrid Bamboo might be what you need. Pairing the natural breathability of bamboo with the improved airflow of springs, the Panda Hybrid Bamboo can keep even hot sleepers cooler overnight.

Panda uses bamboo in both the machine washable cover and the top layer of BioCell foam. Bamboo is naturally temperature regulating (plus hypoallergenic and antibacterial) providing fresher nights for even hot sleepers. It's also a sustainable material, making the Panda Hybrid Bamboo a more planet-friendly choice. 

A plush top layer adds some gentle contouring to the bed, while an inner layer of OrthoAlign foam helps keep the spine in a healthy and neutral position. Our testers found the bed comfortable in a range of positions, but the medium-firm feel is best for stomach and back sleepers. There’s no dipping at the hips, which is good news for anyone who struggles with lower back pain. Edge support is also excellent and our testers found they could share a bed without feeling their partner move around. 

The extras are something of a mixed bag. The 100-night trial and 10-year guarantee are average, and we’d expect more from a mattress in this price bracket. However, Panda does offer free white glove delivery to a room of your choice, and they’ll take away your old mattress to recycle. Sales are very rare and they never last very long, so if you want a discount, you need to act fast. 

The best mattress for hip and joint pain

Best mattress: Tempur-Pedic Tempur Hybrid Mattress UK

(Image credit: Tempur-Pedic)
The best mattress for easing hip and joint pain during sleep

Specifications

Type: Hybrid
Firmness: 'Medium'
Height: 21cm (Supreme); 25cm (Elite)
Trial: 100 nights
Warranty: 10 years
Price bracket: Premium
Materials: Memory foam, other foams, coils

Reasons to buy

+
Superb pressure relief and comfort
+
Good range of sizes and lengths
+
Washable zip-off mattress cover

Reasons to avoid

-
Edge support could be better
-
Trial is short for the price

The Tempur Hybrid excels when it comes to full body contouring comfort and is the best choice for people with sore joints who need pressure relief in multiple sleeping positions. This Tempur comes in two versions: the 21cm tall Supreme and 25cm Elite (there was also originally a 30cm Luxe option). Each uses Advanced Tempur material – the brand’s famous pressure-relieving foam, originally developed by NASA to boost in-flight comfort. It also uses sci-fi-sounding visco-elastic cells that adapt to your posture during sleep, as well as a layer of pocketed micro coil springs .

Never mind the buzzwords though – what's really important is what it's like to sleep on. Our testers found this bed dreamily comfortable. The feel of the Tempur material is quite unique; you sink in slowly, with the material cradling you to give a kind of floating sensation, and it's not super easy to change position. Most people either love it or hate it, but our testers were firmly in the former camp. Even our lightest weight tester, at 50kg and 5”2, felt incredibly supported and enjoyed the excellent pressure relief that this mattress provided. 

Back sleepers will love this mattress, we could feel each pressure point being cushioned and our spine being held evenly as we slept on our backs. It’s the same story for side sleeping, and those of average or heavier weights in particular will benefit from the firmness and cradling on offer. Front sleeping is always going to be tricky to get right, and while our lighter weight combination sleeper occasionally struggled, they were still able to eventually find a comfortable front-sleeping position.

Memory foam beds can sleep hot, but here we were impressed again. Our testers slept on this bed during a 35C heatwave, and we managed to keep our cool even during those incredibly warm nights. There is a lot of skin-to-mattress contact, though, so if you know you're a hot sleeper, you might prefer a bed you sleep on top of rather than sinking into.

The removable mattress cover can be machine washed at temperatures of up to 60°C to kill dust mites and other allergens. One final perk to note is that you can choose from 10 different sizes, including longer models, making it an excellent choice if you’re tall. 

There's no avoiding the fact that, even if you manage to snag a deal, a Tempur-Pedic mattress is an investment. You'll sometimes be able to find a discount, but they're by no means regular. If you can't stretch to a full Tempur mattress, a good way to get a bit of that distinctive sleep feel at a lower price is to go for a Tempur topper –  the brand sits at the top of our best mattress topper guide.

Tempur Hybrid mattress: £1,479£999 at Tempur-Pedic

Tempur Hybrid mattress: from £1,479 £999 at Tempur-Pedic
The Tempur Hybrid is in a closeout sale which means now really is the time to buy if you want this pressure relieving bed. Currently only limited sizes of the Elite are available, but the prices are excellent. A double Elite will cost you just £1,499 but be aware that there's no mention of a mattress trial, so you probably aren't able to return the bed if it doesn't suit your needs.

The best mattress for pressure relief

The best mattress for athletes and active people

Specifications

Type: All-foam
Firmness (1-10): 6
Height: 30cm
Trial: 100 nights
Warranty: 10 years
Price bracket: Mid-range
Materials: Memory foam, other foams

Reasons to buy

+
Relieves pressure on aching joints
+
Responsive surface for consistent support
+
Strong edge support

Reasons to avoid

-
Hard to move
-
Too soft for stomach sleepers

The Zoma Memory Foam is often positioned as an alternative to the Emma Original (#2), as they’re both affordable all-foam designs that are best suited for side sleepers. Where the Zoma stands out is its pressure relief. Measuring 5cm taller than the Emma Original, dense cushioning helps take the weight off at the major pressure points, for fewer aches and pains. Zoma markets the mattress towards athletes, and our testing panel agrees the adaptive support should suit those with an active lifestyle.

There’s a bit of bounce to the Zoma, thanks to a layer of Reactiv foam. This quicker response ensures you don’t sink into the mattress, so it's easy to move around. And when you adjust to a new position, the mattress moves with you to provide continuous contoured pressure relief. Our testing panel was also impressed with the head-to-toe support of the Zoma, thanks to strong edges that you can push against without the bed collapsing beneath you.

Zoma describes the mattress as ‘medium-firm’ and our reviewers agreed, rating it a 6/10. This is at the lower end of the medium-firm rating, making this mattress best for side sleepers and combination sleepers. If you want a memory foam with a firmer feel, consider the Nectar (#5).

For athletes and those with an active lifestyle, the fantastic pressure relief of the Zoma makes this mattress a potentially supportive addition to your recovery plan. The extras are pretty standard – 10-year warranty and a 100-night trial – but the price is hard to beat, especially as regular Zoma sales knock roughly £250 off RRP. 

Zoma Memory Foam Mattress: £649

Zoma Memory Foam Mattress: from £649 £399 at Zoma Sleep
Zoma hasn't been operating in the UK for long but in the US we've spotted evergreen sales consistently taking the price down. Expect something similar in the UK. The current £250 off sale might not be unusual, but it is a good discount (a double is just £499). And as a new brand to the UK market, who knows what future Zoma sales might have in store. 

The best luxury mattress

The best luxury mattress with three firmness choices

Specifications

Type: Hybrid
Firmness (1-10): Soft 3/10, Medium 5/10, Firm 8.5/10
Height: 29cm
Trial: 200 nights
Warranty: 10 years
Price bracket: Luxury
Materials: Memory foam, other foams, coils, nano coils

Reasons to buy

+
Choice of three firmness options
+
Encourages healthy spine alignment
+
Impressive pressure relief
+
Made-to-order

Reasons to avoid

-
Firmer than advertised
-
Weak edges
-
Long delivery time

The made-to-order Brook + Wilde Suprema is our top luxury mattress choice. A quality build is paired with premium materials to create a luxurious feel, and as you can pick between a ‘Soft’, ‘Medium Firm’, and ‘Firm’ feel, this is a bed you can tailor to your needs.

Being able to choose the firmness means the Suprema is a bed that suits a wide range of sleep styles. Our testing panel tried the 'Firm' and found it harder than expected – based on this, we presume all the options will skew slightly firmer. Despite that firmer feel, our reviewers were impressed with the zoned pressure relief provided by the 'Wave' technology that's used in all Suprema mattresses.

Thick layers of cushioning enhance the pressure relief while ensuring the mattress can absorb motion, so if you share a bed you won't be bothered by your partner fidgeting. Beneath the three layers of foam sits three layers of springs, aiding air flow for impressive temperature regulation. The edge support is the only thing that lets the Suprema down. Our lead tester felt they could tip forward off the bed when sitting on the end, and while you’re unlikely to roll off in your sleep, we found the best support is in the middle of the mattress. 

As a made-to-order mattress, prepare for a longer delivery time (roughly four weeks) but free premium delivery is included. You’ll also get a 10-year guarantee and a 200-night mattress trial. This is slightly better than the industry average, but for a bed of this quality and price, we’d expect more. Brook + Wilde regularly knock 40% off the price, but they sometimes offer some unusual deals – like the semi-regular free iPad bundle.

Brook + Wilde Suprema Mattress: £1,499

Brook + Wilde Suprema Mattress: from £1,499 £899.40 at Brook + Wilde
Brook + Wilde is currently offering 40% off the Suprema, taking a double down to £1,019.40 – not bad for a luxury made-to-order mattress. Alternatively, you can switch your discount for a free bedding set. Technically, you save more choosing the bundle, but unless you need a lot of bedding, we think the discount is the best choice.

The best cheap hybrid mattress

The best budget hybrid mattress

Specifications

Type: Hybrid
Firmness (1-10): 6.5
Height: 25cm
Trial: 200 nights
Warranty: 10 years
Price bracket: Upper-mid
Materials: Foams, springs

Reasons to buy

+
Supportive yet cushioned
+
Cooler feel than all-foam
+
Sustainability initiatives

Reasons to avoid

-
Not as luxurious as the DreamCloud

Another excellent hybrid that's worthy of your consideration is the Simba. It's similarly priced to the DreamCloud (#3), with less of a sink-in feel. By design, hybrid mattresses are more breathable than all-foam models – because they use coils or springs, air moves more freely within the mattress – so the Simba is a great choice for people who sleep warm. We have many hot sleepers on our mattress testing panel and none of them overheated on this mattress. 

The Simba Hybrid uses a combination of 2,500 Aerocoil springs and premium foam to deliver a consistent level of support, and overall the feel is medium-firm. This is a mattress you sleep on top of rather than sinking in too far. 

That's ideal if you prefer a more responsive surface, but if you prefer the contouring of memory foam, you'd be better with the DreamCloud. We found the Simba delivered excellent pressure relief for back and side sleepers, as well as boasting strong edge support and minimal motion transfer. The cover is also removable for washing

This mattress brand also stands out for having a focus on sustainability. It's made in a zero-waste factory, from entirely recyclable materials. A Simba mattress sale that knocks around 40% off RRP runs all the time, placing this in the upper mid-range price bracket. For the full Simba experience, pair this mattress with Simba's own top-rated base; see our Simba Sirius bed base review for all the facts.

How we test mattresses

Our mattress testing process is editorially independent – we decide which mattresses to test and when, and only we decide which of those mattresses are good enough to feature in this guide. We test a wide range of beds including hybrid mattresses, memory foam mattresses, cooling and organic mattresses, and at a range of budgets too from affordable to luxury. 

We sleep on each mattress for three consecutive weeks and test it across a range of key areas including comfort, pressure relief, motion isolation, temperature regulation, support and edge support. We score each section out of 5 and then compile all of that testing data to create an overall rating for the mattress.

Our ratings are used to inform the rankings in this guide, and only the best mattresses are featured. Read our methodology for more info.

Expert advice: What is the best type of mattress?

There is no one mattress type to rule them all. Instead, the best type of mattress for you depends upon a few key factors including your body weight and whether you have any specific health or posture needs. When buying a new mattress, you’ll come across these four main types:

Memory foam mattresses

A fantastic choice for anyone who likes to feel hugged during sleep. All-foam mattresses are cosy, but basic foams can sleep warm (they retain heat). The exceptions are breathable or open-pored foam materials as used on the Nectar Memory Foam Mattress and the Emma Original. Read our dedicated guide to the best memory foam mattresses to discover this year's top-rated options. 

We also answer some common questions about all-foam beds in our article answering what is a memory foam mattress.

Hybrid mattresses

You’ll find the most innovative mattress materials within hybrid mattresses, which is one reason why they are more expensive than all-foam models. They are more breathable by design (they use coils, around which air moves more freely), making them a good mattress type for warm sleepers. 

You may be surprised at how firm they feel compared to a foam mattress though, so keep this in mind if you enjoy soft beds.

Innerspring mattresseses

These use coils (interconnected or pocket spring) to offer more bounce than foam models, and aren’t quite as firm as hybrids. The more springs your mattress has the more support it gives. 

Innerspring mattresses are also a good choice for hot sleepers as, again, air moves freely through them. They can feel a little firm to begin with, so consider adding one of the best mattress toppers to increase your comfort.

Latex mattresses

A good choice for people who want a more natural mattress with lower levels of toxins. Latex is cooling, durable and long-lasting, giving you good sleep comfort and value for money over the long-term. That also means latex mattresses are usually more expensive than mattresses made using synthetic materials. 

Boxed mattresses

This is a little different, as the bed-in-a-box market spans all the different kinds of mattress listed above. What is a mattress in a box? It's any mattress that is compressed, rolled and put into a box for delivery. When considering a boxed mattress vs traditional mattress, the main benefits of the former are convenience – especially if you live somewhere where maneuvering room is tight.  

Are bed in a box mattresses any good? Originally, this category was most associated with cheap mattresses that weren't always high quality, but nowadays the market spans all kinds of beds, and many of our best mattress picks are delivered this way.

How to choose the best mattress for you

Choosing a good mattress for you begins with thinking about your current sleep challenges. Do you often wake up because you feel too hot? Does your restless partner wake you up with their tossing and turning? These are all legitimate criteria to keep in mind when picking a new mattress. 

Here's our handy checklist to help you find the best mattress for your sleep:

1. What is your dominant sleeping position?
Most mattresses are supportive for all positions, but you’ll find that they normally excel at one or two. For example, memory foam offers extra cushioning during side sleeping, while hybrids offer better support for back sleepers. 

Middle aged man asleep in bed on a comfy mattress

(Image credit: Getty)

2. Are you sharing with a restless sleeper?
Motion isolation is what you need to look for. Your sleep will be less disturbed if you pick a mattress with ample foam and springs to isolate motion and evenly distribute weight from you and your partner across the entire mattress. 

3. Do you sleep hot?
Choose a breathable mattress. Look for materials such as open cell or perforated foam, or gel-infused foam, or the inclusion of cooling materials such as copper and graphite. Generally speaking, hybrids are more breathable than foam as air flows better in and around their coils or springs. Make sure you have a cooling duvet too.

4. What is your budget?
The likes of Emma Sleep and Nectar Sleep prove that a good mattress needn’t cost the earth, so you have more options available to you than you first thought. Usually, mattress prices are at their lowest late November, making Black Friday mattress deals the best way to upgrade for less.

How to choose the right mattress firmness

How soft or firm a mattress feels is rated from 1 (marshmallow soft) to 10 (hard as a log). A medium firmness is one of the most popular choices because it hits that sweet spot between comfort and support. 

That said, the feel of a mattress is subjective. When we test them, for example, we often experience them in different ways because members of our review team have different body weights. 

Here's how to choose the best mattress firmness for you...

If you weigh 130lbs or less, you will feel comfier on a softer mattress (rated 2-4), especially if you are a lighter weight side sleeper. A softer innerspring or memory foam bed is a good choice here, as it provides cushioning around your back, hips, knees and shoulders. But if you enjoy the feel of a medium firm mattress, anything rated up to a 5 would also suit you. 

If you weigh 130lbs to 230lbs, a medium or medium-firm mattress (rated 5-7) will provide the support and spinal alignment you need for a healthy sleep posture. Pick a medium or medium-firm memory foam mattress if you want a cradling effect on your body, or a medium to medium-firm hybrid if you want a slightly firmer feel. 

For people who weigh over 230lbs, especially if you co-share your bed with another person weighing over that amount, pick a medium-firm mattress (7 out of 10). That level of firmness will ensure you sleep on top of the mattress, rather than sinking into it, so you will remain in alignment during sleep.

A couple test the firmness of a mattress together

(Image credit: Getty)

How to choose a mattress for your sleep position

Back sleepers
If you sleep on your back, choose a medium-firm mattress to keep you on top of the mattress, rather than letting you sink in. This is vital for back sleeping because you want neutral spine alignment to avoid any pain.

Stomach sleepers
Like back sleepers, you should steer clear of soft mattresses if you snooze on your front. A medium mattress is best for you. Pick one that’s too firm or too soft and it will throw your spine out of alignment and put pressure on your back.

Side sleepers
Your main pressure points in this sleep position are shoulders, hips and knees, so pick a soft to medium mattress with cushioning to relieve pressure around those points. Memory foam is a great choice for side sleepers. For more guidance, read our guide to the best mattress for side sleepers.

A couple laugh together while relaxing on the Dormeo S Plus Evolution Mattress

(Image credit: Dormeo)

When is the best time to buy a new mattress?

If you want the cheapest mattress prices and good discounts, the best time to buy a new mattress is on Black Friday, which falls on the last November of every year.

This is when we see big price drops from major sleep brands, as they are competing with one another for your holiday season custom. Our guide to Black Friday mattress deals contains everything you need to know to help you save the most money.

It's a superb time to buy more expensive mattresses for less too, including expensive cooling models and the best organic mattresses, which normally cost a lot more than other types because they use certified organic materials.

What is the best mattress in the UK right now?

We think the Brook + Wilde Lux is the best mattress in the UK right now as most types of sleepers will find its medium firmness to be just what they need. You'll have to be patient as this bed is handcrafted in the UK and delivery times may run longer than usual. But we trust the wait will be worth it for this affordable luxury mattress. We usually see it on sale for at least 40% off. It comes with a 200-night trial plus a 10-year guarantee.

If you're working with a smaller budget, the Emma Original is another fantastic value for money. Yes, it sleeps a little warm, but it's otherwise a fantastic memory foam mattress, especially for side sleepers. Better yet, it’s often up to 50% off at Emma It comes on a 200-night risk-free trial, with a 10-year warranty.

Claire Davies
Senior Sleep Editor, Certified Sleep Science Coach

Claire Davies is Tom's Guide's mattress expert and main sleep product tester with over 15 years' product review experience, and she is responsible for all mattress and sleep coverage on the site. A qualified journalist, Sleep Editor and Certified Sleep Science Coach, Claire writes about all things related to sleep, from mattress reviews to the latest sleep techniques and research. Claire has interviewed a wealth of experts, from mattress designers and innovators to neuroscientists and doctors of sleep medicine. Before taking on the role of Sleep Editor, Claire worked as Health & Wellness Editor at Top Ten Reviews, and before that was a Senior Content Editor at T3. Claire is super-passionate about how consistent, good quality sleep can boost our physical and mental wellbeing, and would love to hear from PRs and brands regarding sleep products, services and research that can help our readers sleep better than ever. 

With contributions from