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Credit: Sleep Foundation Test Lab

Firm mattresses are a popular choice, for good reason. Stiffer beds are known for their support and longevity and make an especially solid option for sleepers who prefer the feel of a sturdy surface over one that’s more cloud-like. A firm mattress can promote better spinal alignment, reduce heat buildup, and offer consistent support night after night, year after year.

In this guide, we’ve honed in on the firm mattresses that stand out for both their quality and their value. If you’re wondering how they compare to other mattress types, check out our best mattresses 2024 guide. If you’re seeking a firm mattress due to back pain, check out our guide on the best mattresses for back pain.

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Best Mattress Overall

Plank Firm Luxe

7.8 /10

Test Lab Score

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With built-in versatility as a flippable bed – there’s a firm side and an extra firm side – you get two mattresses for one with the Plank Firm Luxe. This mattress earned our top mark because its built to last, offers outstanding support with just the right amount of cushion for a firm bed.

Brand photo of the Plank Firm Luxe Mattress

Price

$1,149

Mattress Type

Hybrid

Firmness Options

Firm (7), Extra Firm (9)

Trial Period

120 nights (30-night requirement)

Full Details

Who it’s best for: This mattress has consistently tested exceptionally well for temperature control in our lab and field tests. This is one of our highest rated beds for sleeper over 230 pounds. It’s also a perfect fit for back and stomach sleepers above 130 pounds due to its firm and extra firm construction.

Feel: This is a float-on-top bed, which should suit all firm mattress lovers. The Plank Firm Luxe is aptly named and has a very firm feel. The flippable design lets you choose your firmness, but both sides are equally supportive and ultra responsive.

What it’s made of: The Plank Firm Luxe is a flippable hybrid, meaning the bed sandwiches pocket coils in-between layers of high-density foam. They offer an optional cooling cover for $75.

What we don’t like: There is very little pressure relief to speak of, so side sleepers should be wary unless you’re a bigger bodied person. The added firm feel means this bed performs poorly at dampening your partner’s movement.

Why choose the Plank Firm Luxe: This bed has one of the firmest, most supportive surfaces we’ve ever tested. It’s very well-suited to folks weighing over 230 pounds – particularly back and stomach sleepers.

Scoring & Reviews

Side Sleepers

Under 130 lbs

4.5/10

130-230 lbs

6.5/10

Above 230 lbs

8/10

Back Sleepers

Under 130 lbs

4.5/10

130-230 lbs

6.5/10

Above 230 lbs

8/10

Stomach Sleepers

Under 130 lbs

5/10

130-230 lbs

7/10

Above 230 lbs

8.5/10

We used AI to analyze 1748 validated customer reviews of the Plank Firm Luxe. This is what people who bought the mattress had to say about the following topics:

Feel & Firmness

Users describe the Plank Firm Luxe mattress as very comfortable, often highlighting its firmness as a key feature for support and relief from back pain. Many appreciate the option to choose between the firm and extra firm sides, with several reviewers mentioning improved sleep quality and reduced pain as significant benefits.

Sleeping Position

Side sleepers generally found the Plank Firm Luxe mattress to be comfortable and supportive, appreciating its firmness that still offered enough cushion to not put too much pressure on their joints. Back and stomach sleepers also had positive experiences, with many noting the mattress’s firm support helped alleviate back pain and improve sleep quality, though a few found the extra firm side a bit too hard for their liking.

Shipping & Service

Customers generally report satisfaction with both the service and shipping aspects of purchasing the Plank Firm Luxe mattress. Several reviews highlight the quick and early delivery, with one customer noting the mattress arrived a day earlier than estimated, while another appreciated the prompt delivery and performance of the mattress.

Other Observations

  • The addition of a Glaciotex Cooling Cover significantly enhances the sleeping experience by providing a cooler sleep environment.
  • The availability of different sizes, including the Olympic Queen option, caters to various customer needs.
  • The mattress being flippable, offering different firmness levels on each side, extends the life of the mattress and provides versatility for users with changing firmness preferences.

Best Mattress for Back Pain

Firmer WinkBed

8.6 /10

Test Lab Score

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The Firmer WinkBed’s zoned coil system is incredibly robust, and along with the firm construction, earns this bed high marks for support and durability. This mattress frankly just feels luxurious. It’s plenty firm while also has a touch of give to ease your pressure points.

Price

$1,499

Mattress Type

Innerspring

Firmness Options

Firm (7)

Trial Period

120 nights (30 night requirement)

Full Details

Who it’s best for: This bed is an ideal fit for back and stomach sleepers in middle to larger weight categories, so from 130 lbs and up. For anyone above 200 lbs, the Firmer WinkBed works really well as a side sleeping mattress.

Feel: One of our testers compared the firm version of the WinkBed to the feeling of “lying on a sandy beach.” What he meant by that is the bed has this initial cushioning that absorbs your body pressure, but you’re met immediately with supportive resistance. It’s a combination that pairs perfectly for folks with back pain.

What it’s made of: The Firmer WinkBed has a euro-style pillow top, which means a layer of foam is sewn into the cover to provide padding. Underneath is a layer of transitional foam on top of a pocketed coil support system.

What we don’t like: We like this bed for heavier side sleepers, but if you’re under 130 pounds, the firm feel is going to be too much. Our team noticed more pressure build up in the shoulders when on their sides as compared to the Helix Twilight, so it’s worth considering a side sleeping specific firm bed.

Why choose the Firmer WinkBed: Sleeping this close to the coil system means you’ll get rigid yet reflexive support. It’s why we like this mattress for back pain. It’s also a cool sleeper, if you struggle with getting hot in the night, this bed is a strong antidote.

Scoring & Reviews

Side Sleepers

Under 130 lbs

6/10

130-230 lbs

8/10

Above 230 lbs

8/10

Back Sleepers

Under 130 lbs

6.5/10

130-230 lbs

8.5/10

Above 230 lbs

8.5/10

Stomach Sleepers

Under 130 lbs

6/10

130-230 lbs

8/10

Above 230 lbs

8/10

We used AI to analyze 8573 validated customer reviews of the Winkbed. This is what people who bought the mattress had to say about the following topics:

Feel & Firmness

Users describe the Winkbed as offering a perfect mix of comfort and support, often highlighting its ability to alleviate back pain and provide a restful sleep. Many reviews praise the mattress for being firm yet comfortable, with several mentioning a significant improvement in sleep quality and reduction in discomfort.

Sleeping Position

Side sleepers generally find the Winkbed mattress to be supportive and comfortable, with specific mentions of reduced shoulder and hip pain, indicating a good balance of firmness and cushioning. Back and stomach sleepers also report satisfaction, appreciating the firm support that alleviates back pain and provides a comfortable sleep experience without excessive sinking.

Shipping & Service

Customers appreciate the informative and seamless service provided by Winkbeds, highlighting the clear communication about the status of their order and the helpful pre-delivery advice on mattress setup. The shipping process, despite occasional delays, is generally described as quick and easy, with many customers noting prompt delivery and straightforward setup.

Other Observations

  • The durability and quality of materials, with some noting that the mattress is well-made, does not sag, and maintains its shape and support over time.
  • The ease of the exchange process for those who needed a different firmness level.
  • Ease of setup, with multiple reviewers mentioning that the mattress was easy and quick to set up.

Best Mattress for Side Sleepers

Helix Twilight

8.9 /10

Test Lab Score

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If you’re a side sleeper, most firm mattresses won’t provide enough cushioning or contouring for you to sleep comfortably. The Helix Twilight is a notable exception. We loved how well this bed’s foam layers alleviate pressure point pain with its firm, supportive surface.

Helix Twilight

Price

$1,099

Mattress Type

Hybrid

Firmness Options

Firm (7)

Trial Period

100 nights (30-night requirement)

Full Details

Who it’s best for: If you’re a side sleeper who is larger (above 180 lbs) or otherwise wants or needs a firm mattress, the Helix Twilight is your best option. We really like this bed for it’s float-on, low-sinkage feel, but also for its exceptionally cool feel.

Feel: There’s contouring here, but it’s not a bed you fall into, and with the bounce and responsiveness, the Twilight is a surface that pushes back instead of absorbing your weight.

What it’s made of: As a hybrid mattress, the Twilght sits memory foam and transitional polyfoam on top of a sturdy base of pocketed coils wrapped in a breathable polyester cover.

What we don’t like: This bed doesn’t hold up for lighter weight folks, who tend to need a softer surface that better conforms to lesser force. The responsive nature means you’ll feeling some shifting of your partner as they move about the bed.

Why choose the Helix Twilight: For firm mattress needing side sleepers, it can be especially challenging to find a bed that fits in that intersection. The Twilight has the right profile for it, and when our team took this home for trial runs, it was a clear winner for side sleepers among the firm beds we’ve tested.

Scoring & Reviews

Side Sleepers

Under 130 lbs

7.5/10

130-230 lbs

9/10

Above 230 lbs

7.5/10

Back Sleepers

Under 130 lbs

7.5/10

130-230 lbs

9/10

Above 230 lbs

7.5/10

Stomach Sleepers

Under 130 lbs

6/10

130-230 lbs

7.5/10

Above 230 lbs

6/10

We used AI to analyze 1815 validated customer reviews of the Helix Twilight. This is what people who bought the mattress had to say about the following topics:

Feel & Firmness

Users generally describe the Helix Twilight mattress as firm, with several finding it to provide the supportive firmness they were looking for, while a few others felt it was too soft or not as firm as expected. The feel and firmness of the mattress seem to satisfy most users, though preferences vary, with some users adjusting to the firmness over time or adding a topper for additional comfort.

Sleeping Position

Side sleepers generally found the Helix Twilight mattress to offer a good balance of support and comfort, with some noting it as perfect after an adjustment period or with the addition of a topper for those who found it too firm. Back and stomach sleepers had mixed experiences; some back sleepers appreciated the firm support for spinal alignment and reduced back pain, whereas stomach sleepers liked the firmness for abdominal support, though a few mentioned the mattress could be too firm or soft, indicating varied preferences within these sleeper groups.

Shipping & Service

Customers generally report positive experiences with the service and shipping of the Helix Twilight mattress, noting easy and quick arrivals. However, there are instances of dissatisfaction with shipping damage and customer service responsiveness, as well as challenges with the weight and handling of the mattress upon delivery.

Other Observations

  • Ease of Setup: Many customers highlighted the ease with which they could set up the mattress, mentioning it as a straightforward process despite the mattress’s weight.
  • Weight and Packaging: The weight of the mattress is frequently noted, often described as heavy, indicating a substantial product.
  • The packaging also receives praise for its effectiveness in protecting the mattress during shipping.
  • Accessories and Additional Products: Some reviews express satisfaction with the additional products such as pillows and sheets, even when there are mixed feelings about the origin of these accessories.

Best Extra-Firm Mattress

Plank Firm

7.7 /10

Test Lab Score

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Much like its hybrid counterpart, the Plank Firm Luxe, this mattress is flippable with a firm and extra firm side, the latter of which is one of the firmest we’ve ever tested. This bed has no sinkage and is the perfect surface for ultra firm-seeking stomach and back sleepers.

A picture of the Plank Firm Mattress in Sleep Foundation's test lab.

Price

$999

Mattress Type

Foam

Firmness Options

Firm (7), Extra Firm (9)

Trial Period

120 nights (30-night requirement)

Full Details

Who it’s best for: As the firmest of all our firm bed recommendations, the all-foam version of the Plank is where we tell exclusive stomach sleepers to look. It’s also the bed we rate best for heavyweight back sleepers, and frankly anyone who needs their bed to feel like you’re sleeping on the ground.

Feel: The firm side of the bed has slight give, so you’ll get a smidge more sink compared to the extra firm side, where there’s almost no compression under your weight. The edge is also super strong and stable, and we found very little heat buildup.

What it’s made of: A flippable all-foam model, this mattress is made with a layer of TitanFlex under the cover on the firm side, a high density base foam, and a quilted foam cover. It’s a self-described tatami mat lookalike.

What we don’t like: The Plank Firm boils down to one of those incredibly subjective mattresses, where you’ll either love it or hate it, and there’s no in between. It’s a no-frills, ultra firm mattress, so there’s no universal appeal. We DO NOT like this bed for lighter and medium weight folks unless they specifically want that extra hard feel.

Why choose the Plank Firm: Anyone struggling to find adequate support or needs a bed that doesn’t hammock over time should check out the Plank Firm. Optimal for bigger bodied individuals who need a bed that doesn’t break down underneath them.

Scoring & Reviews

Side Sleepers

Under 130 lbs

4.5/10

130-230 lbs

6.5/10

Above 230 lbs

8/10

Back Sleepers

Under 130 lbs

4.5/10

130-230 lbs

6.5/10

Above 230 lbs

8/10

Stomach Sleepers

Under 130 lbs

5/10

130-230 lbs

7/10

Above 230 lbs

8.5/10

We used AI to analyze 3177 validated customer reviews of the Plank Firm. This is what people who bought the mattress had to say about the following topics:

Feel & Firmness

Users describe the mattress as very firm and supportive, often highlighting its ability to alleviate back pain and improve sleep quality. Some reviews mention it being too firm for their liking, but the majority appreciate its firmness level, especially for those seeking a very firm sleeping surface.

Sleeping Position

Side sleepers generally found the mattress supportive and comfortable, with some noting that the firmer side provided the right amount of support without causing pressure points, particularly beneficial for those with back pain. Back and stomach sleepers appreciated the firmness of the mattress, with many experiencing relief from chronic pain and improved sleep quality, although a few mentioned the need for an adjustment period or added a pillow top for extra comfort.

Shipping & Service

Customers generally have a positive experience with the firmness and quality of the Plank mattress, appreciating its support for back pain relief and its flippable firmness options. However, there are mixed reviews about the service and shipping, with some customers experiencing delays in production and shipping, while others praise the customer service for handling issues efficiently.

Other Observations

    Other observations about the Plank Firm mattress include aspects like its flippable design, the relative thinness of the mattress profile, the ease of setup, and the durability concerns mentioned by some users. Additionally, some users appreciated the aesthetic and design of the mattress, while others noted issues with edge support and heat retention.

Best Luxury Mattress

Saatva Classic – Firm

8.8 /10

Test Lab Score

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The Saatva Classic is the Cadillac of mattresses. The firmest version of this bed has it all – supreme support, balanced feel, wonderfully breathable, and a sturdy edge. It’s a premium mattress, and if your budget fits, you will have a hard time finding a more comfortable choice.

Price

$1,795

Mattress Type

Innerspring

Firmness Options

Firm (8)

Trial Period

365 Nights ($99 Return Fee)

Full Details

Who it’s best for: With three different firmness options, the Saatva is able to accommodate sleepers of practically any position or weight, but the firm version is best suited to heavier sleepers and stomach sleepers. The bed’s innerspring design is also exceptionally cool, so this is a great choice if you tend to sleep hot at night.

Feel: The bed has a thin, plush surface feel, followed by a firm comfort system. It’s quite bouncy and responsive, which makes it easy to move around on.

What it’s made of: Topped with a euro-top on the surface, followed by a thin memory foam layer, a layer of microcoils, and then a support core of larger hourglass coils.

What we don’t like: With a starting price of nearly $120, the Saatva isn’t an ideal option for those on a budget.

Why choose the Saatva Classic: The Saatva Classic is one of the most supportive and coolest mattresses on the market. If you like the innerspring feel and have the budget, go with the Saatva.

Scoring & Reviews

Side Sleepers

Under 130 lbs

5.5/10

130-230 lbs

7.5/10

Above 230 lbs

9/10

Back Sleepers

Under 130 lbs

5.5/10

130-230 lbs

7.5/10

Above 230 lbs

9/10

Stomach Sleepers

Under 130 lbs

6/10

130-230 lbs

8/10

Above 230 lbs

9.5/10

We used AI to analyze 3308 validated customer reviews of the Saatva Classic. This is what people who bought the mattress had to say about the following topics:

Feel & Firmness

Users describe the Saatva Classic mattress as providing excellent support and comfort, with several mentioning the perfect balance between a plushy top layer and firm support underneath. The firmness levels are appreciated across the range, with customers finding the luxury firm option supportive yet giving, and those who opted for the plush soft or firm variants satisfied with the feel, indicating a versatile satisfaction with the firmness options offered.

Sleeping Position

Side sleepers found the Saatva Classic mattress to be very comfortable, especially when opting for the plush soft version, as it provided the right balance of support and softness, allowing for a restful sleep without discomfort. Back and stomach sleepers also reported positive experiences, noting that the luxury firm and firm options offered the necessary support for their sleeping positions, leading to reduced back pain and improved sleep quality.

Shipping & Service

Customers consistently praise the service and shipping experience when purchasing the Saatva Classic mattress, highlighting the ease of the online purchase process, the helpfulness of sales staff in stores, and the professional and courteous delivery service. Issues that do arise, such as delivery delays, are mitigated by effective communication and prompt customer service responses, ensuring a positive overall experience.

Other Observations

  • The value of the mattress being made with safe materials, specifically noting the absence of fiberglass.
  • The durability and long-term satisfaction with the mattress, as highlighted by a customer who has used it for seven years.
  • The ease of the delivery process, including the removal of old mattresses and the professional demeanor of the delivery personnel.

Best Mattress for Couples

Helix Dawn

8.6 /10

Test Lab Score

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For a firm surface, the Helix Dawn is an especially strong performer at limiting the movement you feel from your sleep partner. Outside of earning high marks from our team for motion isolation, the Dawn is a splendidly cool bed, and offers strong support across the entire bed.

Price

$1,099

Mattress Type

Hybrid

Firmness Options

Firm (8)

Trial Period

100 Nights (30-Night Requirement)

Full Details

Who it’s best for: The Helix Dawn is quite firm, being a step up from the Helix Twilight listed earlier on this list. While many firm beds struggle to isolate motion, we found the foam layers on this bed to limit disturbances across the surface pretty well. So couples consisting of heavier sleepers, or perhaps stomach sleepers, will find this bed appealing.

Feel: The firm foam surface conforms slightly to the body, but the bed is fairly bouncy and responsive overall.

What it’s made of: The Helix Dawn is a hybrid containing surface layers of polyfoam with coils in the support core.

What we don’t like: For side sleepers—Unless you’re over 230 pounds or so, the pressure on your shoulders will likely make this bed uncomfortable.

Why choose the Helix Dawn: The Helix Dawn is firm, affordable, and good for couples. I you and your partner are a bit heavier or like to sleep on your stomachs, this is a great option.

Scoring & Reviews

Side Sleepers

Under 130 lbs

6.5/10

130-230 lbs

8/10

Above 230 lbs

8/10

Back Sleepers

Under 130 lbs

6/10

130-230 lbs

7.5/10

Above 230 lbs

7.5/10

Stomach Sleepers

Under 130 lbs

5.5/10

130-230 lbs

7/10

Above 230 lbs

7/10

We used AI to analyze 1268 validated customer reviews of the Helix Dawn. This is what people who bought the mattress had to say about the following topics:

Feel & Firmness

Users describe the Helix Dawn mattress as firm, with some noting it as firmer than expected, while others feel it softens over time. Many users appreciate the firm support it provides, especially for back and stomach sleepers. Some report it being too hard and causing back pain after extended use.

Sleeping Position

Side sleepers have had mixed experiences with the Helix Dawn mattress, with some finding it great for support and comfort, while others felt it was too firm or became too soft over time, leading to discomfort. Back and stomach sleepers generally reported positive experiences, appreciating the firm support that helped alleviate back pain and allowed for comfortable stomach sleeping without causing lower back pain.

Shipping & Service

Customers generally report positive experiences with the service and shipping of the Helix Dawn mattress, highlighting the effortless shipping process and the ease of unpacking. However, there are a few reports of bad shipping experiences, such as unclear shipping times and mattresses being left outside in adverse weather conditions.

Other Observations

  • Design and Material Quality: Positive remarks were made about the mattress’s design and the high-quality materials used in its construction.
  • Sagging Issues: A few users have noted that the mattress started sagging sooner than expected, which raised concerns about its longevity.
  • Ease of Setup: Customers appreciated the ease with which the mattress could be set up in their homes.

Best Mattress for Pressure Relief

Nolah Evolution 15 – Firm

8.2 /10

Test Lab Score

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Even though you want a firm mattress, everyone needs to cushion sensitive pressure regions. The Nolah Evolution 15 is that best of both worlds bed you’re after. Its zoned system has just the right amount of give in your shoulder and hip areas, but doesn’t sacrifice on firm support.

A picture of the Nolah Evolution 15 Mattress in Sleep Foundation's test lab.

Price

$1,624

Mattress Type

Hybrid

Firmness Options

Firm (8)

Trial Period

120 nights (30-night requirement), $99 return pickup fee

Full Details

Who it’s best for: Firmer beds inherently provide less pressure relief than softer ones, but the Nolah’s thick foam surface layers conform close to the body and without sacrificing the bed’s firm support. We recommend this bed for people with pain issues who prefer a firmer mattress.

Feel: The foam on the surface of this bed is dense and responsive, conforming a bit to your body but providing a sturdy base that prevents midsection sinkage.

What it’s made of: On the top is an airy foam euro-top, then thick polyfoam comfort layers and a coil support core.

What we don’t like: With a starting price of over $1000, the Evolution is definitely edging towards luxury territory.

Why choose the Nolah Evolution 15: This bed is a great best-of both worlds option for those looking for both firmness and pressure relief. If you struggle with pain issues, and you’re the type of sleeper who requires a firmer bed, this is the mattress for you.

Scoring & Reviews

Side Sleepers

Under 130 lbs

5.5/10

130-230 lbs

6/10

Above 230 lbs

7.5/10

Back Sleepers

Under 130 lbs

7/10

130-230 lbs

8/10

Above 230 lbs

8.5/10

Stomach Sleepers

Under 130 lbs

7.5/10

130-230 lbs

8.5/10

Above 230 lbs

8.5/10

We used AI to analyze 897 validated customer reviews of the Nolah Evolution 15. This is what people who bought the mattress had to say about the following topics:

Feel & Firmness

Users have mixed feelings about the feel and firmness of the Nolah Evolution 15 mattress, with some finding it too soft and others praising its perfect balance of softness and support. While some users struggle with the mattress being too firm or too soft for their liking, others describe it as the ideal combination of comfort and firmness, providing relief from back pain and improving sleep quality.

Sleeping Position

Side sleepers generally had negative experiences, with several mentioning increased pain and discomfort, indicating that the mattress may not provide adequate support for their sleeping position. Back and stomach sleepers had more positive experiences, with many reporting improved sleep quality, reduced pain, and appreciating the mattress’s balance of softness and support.

Shipping & Service

Customers generally report positive experiences with Nolah’s service and shipping, appreciating the ease of ordering, quick delivery, and the helpful customer service, especially during the returns or exchanges process. A few customers encountered issues but found Nolah’s customer service responsive and willing to assist, enhancing their overall satisfaction with the purchase experience.

Other Observations

  • The ability of the mattress to inhibit motion transfer, allowing partners to move without disturbing each other, was mentioned positively in several reviews.
  • A few reviews mentioned the mattress’s ability to regulate temperature, with some highlighting its cooling features, while others wished it was cooler, especially during warmer months.
  • A few reviewers expressed concerns about the mattress’s durability, noting issues with sagging or breakdown over time, especially in relation to their previous experiences with other mattresses.

Best Mattress for Back and Stomach Sleepers

Bear Elite Hybrid – Firm

8.0 /10

Test Lab Score

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When we tested the Bear Elite Hybrid, it was a clear winner among back and stomach sleepers in each body weight category. Our team found spinal alignment – what we think of as support – was about as good as it gets for back and stomach sleeping.

A picture of the Bear Elite Hybrid Mattress in Sleep Foundation's test lab.

Price

$1,499

Mattress Type

Hybrid

Firmness Options

Firm (8)

Trial Period

120 nights (30-night break-in period)

Full Details

Who it’s best for: Practically all the beds on this list are good for stomach sleepers, but the Bear Elite Hybrid is unique in that it tested equally well for both back and stomach sleepers. We recommend the firm iteration of this bed to people who sleep in those positions, particularly a combination of both.

Feel: The foam on the surface conforms to the body a bit, but the layers on the firm version are thinner and firmer. You can feel the transitional foam layer under the comfort layers, which are zoned to support your midsection.

What it’s made of: The surface layers consist of memory foam and polyfoam, while the support core contains coils. There’s also the optional celliant cover, which reduces heat retention and is said to promote muscle recovery.

What we don’t like: This bed is around 14 inches thick, and might require deep pocket sheets.

Why choose the Bear Elite Hybrid: This mattress is incredibly well-rounded. It’s firm and supportive, reliefs pressure, and works well for sleepers of multiple positions.

Scoring & Reviews

Side Sleepers

Under 130 lbs

6/10

130-230 lbs

7.5/10

Above 230 lbs

7.5/10

Back Sleepers

Under 130 lbs

5.5/10

130-230 lbs

7/10

Above 230 lbs

7/10

Stomach Sleepers

Under 130 lbs

5/10

130-230 lbs

6.5/10

Above 230 lbs

6.5/10

We used AI to analyze 3703 validated customer reviews of the Bear Elite Hybrid. This is what people who bought the mattress had to say about the following topics:

Feel & Firmness

Users describe the feel of the Bear Elite Hybrid mattress as a perfect balance between support and softness, often highlighting its ability to alleviate back pain and provide a comfortable rest. The firmness is frequently described as medium, with several reviews noting that it offers the right amount of firmness for back support while still being soft enough for comfort.

Sleeping Position

Side sleepers experienced discomfort and soreness, particularly around the shoulder and hip areas, indicating that the mattress was too firm for some. Back and stomach sleepers generally appreciated the firm support and cooling features of the mattress, reporting reduced back pain and improved sleep quality.

Shipping & Service

Customers generally report positive experiences with the service and shipping aspects of purchasing the Bear Elite Hybrid mattress. Many reviews highlight the company’s responsive and helpful customer service, as well as quick and efficient delivery times, making the overall purchase process smooth and satisfactory.

Other Observations

  • The inclusion of free accessories such as pillows, sheets, and covers with some orders, enhancing the overall value of the purchase.
  • The mattress’s ability to stay cool and provide a comfortable sleeping temperature, even during hot weather or for individuals who tend to sleep hot.
  • The hypoallergenic properties of the mattress, which cater to hot sleepers and individuals with allergies, providing a healthier sleeping environment.

Best Medium-Firm Mattress

DreamCloud Mattress

8.5 /10

Test Lab Score

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There’s no two ways around it, the DreamCloud is the best value mattress. But it’s also right in that sweet spot of being firm without feeling like a rock. A solid medium-firm bed, the DreamCloud is a match for lighter and middle-weight folks who want a firm surface.

Best Mattress - A picture of the DreamCloud Mattress in Sleep Foundation's test lab.

Price

$665

Mattress Type

Hybrid

Firmness Options

Medium Firm (6)

Trial Period

365 nights (30-night requirement)

Full Details

Who it’s best for: The DreamCloud isn’t as firm as the other beds on this list, and is more suited to people in between 130-230 and/or side sleepers. It’s very affordable, and a favorite among our testers.

Feel: The foam surface layers are fairly responsive for a memory foam hybrid, and the bed strikes a great balance between pressure-relief and support. Compared to the super firm beds on this list, it does hug your body a bit more.

What it’s made of: Thick memory foam and poly foam layers up top and coils in the support core.

What we don’t like: Stomach sleepers and sleepers over 230 pounds are probably better off with the other options on this list.

Why choose the DreamCloud: If you’re looking for something that’s somewhat firm, provides nice pressure relief, and great value.

Scoring & Reviews

Side Sleepers

Under 130 lbs

7.5/10

130-230 lbs

9/10

Above 230 lbs

7.5/10

Back Sleepers

Under 130 lbs

7/10

130-230 lbs

8.5/10

Above 230 lbs

7/10

Stomach Sleepers

Under 130 lbs

5.5/10

130-230 lbs

7/10

Above 230 lbs

5.5/10

We used AI to analyze 8729 validated customer reviews of the DreamCloud Mattress. This is what people who bought the mattress had to say about the following topics:

Feel & Firmness

Users describe the Dreamcloud Mattress as offering a perfect balance of comfort and firmness, often noting it’s neither too soft nor too hard, providing just the right amount of support. Many reviews highlight the mattress’s ability to combine a plush feel with adequate support, making it comfortable for a variety of sleep positions and preferences.

Sleeping Position

Side sleepers have found the Dreamcloud mattress to be a perfect fit, offering a balance of support and comfort that enhances their sleep quality. Back and stomach sleepers also report significant satisfaction, noting improved sleep quality, reduced pain, and the mattress’s ability to accommodate their preferred sleeping positions with the right mix of firmness and plushness.

Shipping & Service

Customers generally express high satisfaction with both the service and shipping process when purchasing the Dreamcloud Mattress. Positive mentions of customer service assistance and smooth delivery experiences indicate that the company provides reliable service and efficient shipping.

Other Observations

  • The ease of setup and assembly, with several reviewers noting that the mattress was easy to set up right out of the box.
  • The temperature regulation of the mattress, with some users mentioning that it sleeps cool and does not trap body heat.
  • The weight and thickness of the mattress, with some noting it is heavier than expected but appreciates the substantial feel.

Best Mattress for Heavy Sleepers

Titan Plus

8.0 /10

Test Lab Score

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Designed specifically with larger bodies in mind, the Titan Plus is simply a rock-solid bed that is built to last. High density foams and a strong coil support core stood up extremely well in our years of testing this bed. And the firm feel is perfect for bigger body profiles.

A picture of the Titan Plus Mattress in Sleep Foundation's test lab.

Price

$1,049

Mattress Type

Hybrid

Firmness Options

Firm (8)

Trial Period

120 nights (30-night requirement)

Full Details

Who it’s best for: This bed is ideal for the heavy sleeper on a budget. It’s quite firm, relatively high quality, and with a starting price of less than $600, is one of the more affordable options for its niche.

Feel: Really just a no-frills firm hybrid. This bed is designed to support the mid-section of heavier sleepers, and that’s what it does. If firm is your thing, you’ll find it comfy.

What it’s made of: A thin memory foam comfort layer, transitional polyfoam, with a pocketed coil support core.

What we don’t like: If you’re under 230 pounds and/or sleep on your side, this bed is probably too firm for you.

Why choose the Titan Plus: Choose with bed if you’re heavy, need support, and want good quality at an affordable price.

Scoring & Reviews

Side Sleepers

Under 130 lbs

6/10

130-230 lbs

7.5/10

Above 230 lbs

7.5/10

Back Sleepers

Under 130 lbs

5.5/10

130-230 lbs

7/10

Above 230 lbs

7/10

Stomach Sleepers

Under 130 lbs

5/10

130-230 lbs

6.5/10

Above 230 lbs

6.5/10

We used AI to analyze 2607 validated customer reviews of the Titan Plus. This is what people who bought the mattress had to say about the following topics:

Feel & Firmness

Users describe the Titan Plus as comfortable and supportive, with many appreciating its firmness, especially for back support and for heavier individuals. However, some users find it too firm and have opted for a mattress topper to soften it, while others wish it offered more firmness.

Sleeping Position

Side sleepers generally find the Titan Plus too firm for their liking, with some opting for a topper or recommending a different model for a better experience. Back and stomach sleepers, however, seem to appreciate the firm support the mattress provides, noting improvements in back pain and overall sleep quality.

Shipping & Service

Customers have expressed satisfaction with the prompt delivery and the quality of the product upon arrival, highlighting the efficiency of the service and shipping process. Some reviews specifically mention the ease of setup and the condition of the mattress upon delivery, indicating a positive overall experience with the purchase and delivery of the Titan Plus.

Other Observations

  • The mattress’s ability to hold its shape and not sag, particularly mentioned by heavier users or those who have had issues with other mattresses sagging over time.
  • Some users mentioned the mattress’s weight, highlighting that it is heavier than their previous mattresses, which some interpreted as a sign of quality and durability.
  • The cooling features of the mattress, including the optional cooling topper, received mixed reviews, with some finding it effective and others still finding the mattress sleeps warm despite the topper.

Each of these mattresses not only offers a firm sleep surface but also stands out from the competition thanks to high-quality construction and above-average performance. Details about each of our best firm mattress picks can be found below. Scroll down even further for our comprehensive buyer’s guide, which discusses the pros and cons of firm mattresses, the people who benefit most from these mattresses, and what you can expect in terms of cost, longevity, and performance. If you’re shopping for firmer mattresses with a more responsive feel, we recommend checking out our list of the Best Latex Mattresses.

In our recommendations section below, we’ll offer up details about each of the mattresses that earned a spot on our final list for best firm bed. Our mattress database contains close to 2,000 beds that our Test Lab has personally touched, tested, rolled around on, and even slept on at home. We’ve gotten our hands on countless foam, hybrid, and latex models to bring you the list below.

Watch Video: We Tested the Best Firm Mattresses of 2024 – Here Are Our Favorites

Expert Tested. Sleeper Approved.

Over the past eight years, our Seattle-based Test Lab has performed hands-on tests on more than 4,000 sleep products — and nearly 2,000 of them are mattresses. 

As product experts, we stay up to date on the latest news in sleep science and product trends. We use this knowledge to fuel our data-backed recommendations. Many of our testers have worked directly with mattress manufacturers and visited actual mattress factories. On occasion, a sleep health expert might stop by to tweak a firmness rating.

When we test a mattress, we collect data across six major performance categories and combine these results with real-world feedback. We use tools and tech to monitor features like heat retention, motion isolation, and pressure mapping. In order to ensure our findings are inclusive of all sleepers, our team consists of people with varying body types and sleep positions.

Mattresses aren’t one-size-fits-all. The perfect bed for you is going to depend on general points like your body weight and sleeping position, as well as unique points like if you have back pain, if you sleep hot at night, or if you just like the feel of latex over memory foam. Our goal at the Test Lab is to help take the guesswork out of your mattress-buying process.

So How Did We Pick the Best Firm Mattresses?

When coming up with our picks for the best firm beds, our testers paid close attention to the overall feel of the surface and the materials used, since latex and hybrid models generally have a firmer feel. We also measured pressure relief and edge support, which are both closely related to a bed’s firmness level. We sought feedback from testers across all sleep positions and weight groups, but we focused especially on testers who sleep on their stomach or weigh more than 230 pounds since these sleepers tend to prefer firmer beds.

Why You Should (or Should Not) Sleep on a Firm Mattress?

We’ve found that firm mattresses work best for people over 230 pounds as well as back and stomach sleepers over 130 pounds. The added stability of a firm mattress helps prevent these groups from sinking too deeply into the surface, thereby promoting better alignment during sleep.

Additionally, a firmer mattress that doesn’t contour deeply tends to retain little heat – a crucial feature for those who tend to sleep hot. The rigidity of a firm mattress also makes it easier to move across its surface. Whether you’re switching sleeping positions or simply getting out of bed, moving requires less effort on a sturdy surface.

However, it’s essential to remember that comfort is a personal experience. While back and stomach sleepers might favor firm mattresses, side sleepers and those with specific pressure points might find them uncomfortable.

What to Consider When Shopping for a Firm Mattress

Selecting a mattress goes beyond just pinpointing the right level of firmness. It’s a blend of understanding your body’s unique needs and recognizing what a specific mattress can potentially do for your sleep. To make the process easier, we tested hundreds of firm mattresses and gathered qualitative and quantitative insights that can make your decision easier.

Factors like price, contouring and cushioning, sleeping position, body weight, and materials used play a huge role. We’ll guide you through these considerations to help you find the right firm mattress for you.

Choosing the Right Firmness for You

The right firmness level is the one on which you feel most comfortable and wake up without any discomfort or pressure points. We employ a 10-point firmness scale to rate individual mattresses, but remember, everyone’s perception of firmness can differ. On our scale, anything from 6 to 10 is generally classified as firm.

Contouring and Pressure Relief

A mattress should contour gently to your body, shaping itself around your natural curves. Adequate contouring improves pressure relief because it helps the mattress to evenly disperse body weight and avoid the buildup of pressure under common pain points like hips and shoulders. 

Firm mattresses can offer excellent contouring and pressure relief even though they perform differently than softer mattresses. A firm mattress provides support by maintaining a consistent surface that props your body up, rather than allowing it to sink deeply. The cushioning on a firm mattress might be less pronounced than a soft mattress, but it should still align with your body shape.

Back and stomach sleepers generally benefit the most from the contouring and pressure relief offered by a firm mattress, as these positions need consistent support to prevent the spine from arching unnaturally or the abdomen from sinking too deeply. On the flip side, side sleepers sometimes prefer a bit more give in their mattress to cushion their shoulders and hips.

Sleeping Position and Body Weight

Your body weight and sleeping position significantly influence the ideal mattress firmness for your body. For back and stomach sleepers, firm mattresses can be a solid choice, since they offer the right blend of cushion and support. On the other hand, side sleepers usually benefit from a touch more softness.

Body weight affects how much your body sinks into a mattress’ surface. We’ve found that firm mattresses are often a great fit for people who weigh more than 130 pounds. For these sleepers, a firm mattress offers a balanced feel—some contouring paired with firmer support. People under 130 pounds are typically more comfortable on a softer surface that provides more contouring.

WeightSide SleepersBack SleepersStomach Sleepers
Less than 130 lbs.Soft (3) to Medium (5)Soft (3) to Medium (5)Medium Soft (4) to Medium Firm (6)
130 to 230 lbs.Medium Soft (4) to Medium (5)Medium (5) to Firm (7)Medium (5) to Firm (7)
More than 230 lbs.Medium Firm (6) to Firm (7)Firm (7, 8) to Extra Firm (9)Firm (7, 8) to Extra Firm (9)

Back, Hip, or Shoulder Pain

If you have chronic pain in your back, hips, or shoulders, it’s important to understand how a mattress’ firmness level could affect your symptoms. A firm mattress can help alleviate pain when it allows for adequate contouring and pressure relief for your body weight and sleeping position. An overly firm mattress may lack sufficient cushioning for your joints and shift your spine out of alignment, exacerbating pain.

Mattress Type and Quality

Different types of mattresses vary in their firmness and overall performance. Common mattress types include innerspring, foam, latex, and hybrid. 

  • Innersprings are often bouncy with varied firmness depending on coil density. 
  • Foam mattresses encompass memory and polyfoam, can range from soft to firm, and contour closely to the body. 
  • Latex variants, either natural or synthetic, balance responsiveness with firmness. 
  • Hybrids combine the features of innersprings and foam or latex, allowing for a tailored firmness.

The choice of mattress type not only impacts firmness and performance, but also its lifespan. Generally, high-quality latex and hybrid mattresses excel in durability, while foam can vary based on its density and composition.

Trials, Returns, and Warranties

A company’s trial period, return policy, and warranty offer protection in case the mattress you selected doesn’t align with your expectations. 

A sleep trial allows you to experience the bed in the comfort of your own home and is especially crucial when you’re considering the firmness of the mattress. If the mattress doesn’t meet your expectations during the trial, many brands provide an option to exchange or return it.

Warranties, on the other hand, give assurance of the mattress’s durability and quality over time. Should there be any manufacturing defects or premature wear, the warranty acts as a promise from the company to address these issues, ensuring you receive the value for your investment.

Dive Deeper – In-Depth Mattress Guides

For more help deciding which mattress is right for your specific needs, check out the guides below.

Frequently Asked Questions

What mattress types are firmest?

Although we’ve tested firm mattresses of virtually every type of construction, innerspring and hybrid models are usually the firmest. Innersprings provide a solid, consistent surface due to their coil construction, while hybrids have a top layer of latex or dense foam to balance support with gentle contouring.

Is a firm mattress better for back pain?

A firm mattress can help with back pain by promoting healthy sleep posture and neutral spinal alignment. However, the best mattress for back pain depends on the location and nature of the back pain as well as your preferred sleeping position.

Is a firm mattress good for side sleepers?

A firm mattress may be a good choice for side sleepers over 230 pounds who can sink enough into the bed’s surface. A firm mattress may not be ideal for side sleepers under 230 pounds, as inadequate give can exert pressure on the shoulders and hips. A soft (3) to medium (5) mattress with more contouring provides better cushioning for lighter side sleepers.

Do firm mattresses last longer than soft mattresses?

While firmness can influence durability, we’ve found that its lifespan is more about the mattress’s construction, materials, and usage. Latex, high-density polyfoam, and hybrid mattresses often last longer than traditional innerspring and beds with lower-density foam that tend to degrade faster.

How can you make a mattress firmer?

Buying a mattress with the right level of firmness is the best way to ensure a consistent feel, but there are several ways to make a mattress firmer. A firm mattress topper can change the surface of the mattress, but won’t make up for sagging that happens over time in softer models. Rotating or flipping the mattress regularly may help with sagging due to a mattress’ age.

What is the best mattress firmness for couples?

Couples may have a tough time choosing a mattress if they have different firmness preferences. Some couples solve this by choosing a firmness level that’s between the two, with medium-firm (6) being a common choice for couples where one partner likes a firm mattress and the other likes a softer sleep surface. Others go for a split mattress, which allows for a different firmness level on each side.

Is a hard mattress good for posture?

A firm mattress can support healthy sleep posture by keeping the spine of an even plane. However, it’s crucial that the mattress isn’t excessively hard, as it should adapt to the body’s curves for optimal support. This means finding a firmness level that works for an individual’s weight and sleeping position.

Still have questions?

Our product experts have extensive experience testing just about every sleep product on the market.

Send an email to [email protected] with your questions and we’ll help you find exactly what you’re looking for.

Learn more about our Editorial Team