Home / Best Mattress / Best Mattress in a Box

Best Mattress in a Box

Logan Foley

Written by

Logan Foley, Certified Sleep Coach

Methodology Icon
Methodology

We personally test every product featured in our reviews and guide to provide accurate, data-driven recommendations. Learn More

Recency Statement Icon

Over the next month, we will be conducting some new product tests. The results of these tests may affect our best mattress in a box picks, and we will update this page accordingly.

Sleepfoundation.org is reader-supported. We may earn a commission through products purchased using links on this page. Learn more about our process here

“Mattress in a box” is a catch-all term for any bed shipped directly to customers via standard ground delivery. A recent boom in the online mattress industry has made beds in boxes more accessible to consumers. Prior to shipping, the mattress undergoes a process called “roll-packing,” during which it is compressed, wrapped in plastic, and vacuum-sealed. These mattresses immediately begin to expand after you unbox them, and will usually be ready for use within 24 to 48 hours.

Our testing crew has evaluated hundreds of the best mattresses from online brands to create the list of top picks below. They tested each mattress for performance factors such as pressure relief, temperature neutrality, and motion isolation, assigning a rating for every category. The testing team is made up of people with varying body types and primary sleep positions, so we also scored these mattresses based on how comfortable – or uncomfortable – they feel for different sleeper types.

This list of the best mattresses-in-a-box reflects the findings of our testing crew. The profiles below include in-depth looks at each of our top picks. If you’re in the market for an online mattress, also make sure to check out this page’s detailed buyer’s guide. You’ll find all information about prices and the mattress delivery process, pros and cons about different mattress types, and answers to common questions about mattress-in-a-box models.

Product Details

DreamCloud Mattress

Best Overall

DreamCloud Mattress

DreamCloud Mattress
Price Range: $699 - $1,299
Mattress Type: Hybrid
Firmness: Medium Firm (6)
Trial length: 365 nights (30-night requirement)
Trial length: 365 nights (30-night requirement)
Warranty: Lifetime, limited
Warranty: Lifetime, limited
Sizes: Twin, Twin XL, Full, Queen, King, California King
Who it's best for:
  • Sleepers with pain or pressure points along the spine
  • People who sleep hot at night
  • Value seekers
Highlights:
  • Medium firm feel ensures a balance of even contouring and strong support
  • Plush quilted top is soft and breathable
  • Thick layer of individually wrapped coils provides deep compression support
DreamCloud Mattress

Use this SleepFoundation.org link for the most current discount on DreamCloud mattresses

The DreamCloud Mattress is a luxury hybrid mattress known for its impressive balance of support, pressure relief, and temperature neutrality. The mattress has a medium firm feel (6 out of 10) and is distinguished by its quilted surface and tall, 14-inch profile.

What It’s Made of

The cover of the DreamCloud is made of a cashmere poly-blend, and contains a layer of polyfoam quilted into the top. This makes for a breathable and plush sleep surface. Under this is a layer of gel-infused memory foam for extra pressure relief, followed by a transition layer of polyfoam. The support core consists of 8 inches of individually-wrapped coils.

How It Performed

By utilizing such a high-profile design, the DreamCloud mattress is capable of providing a balance of both pressure relief and support. The mattress conforms moderately to the body of the sleeper, but doesn’t provide that ‘sinking’ feeling associated with softer mattresses with more foam layers. Performance-wise, the DreamCloud is a great all-around mattress, performing especially well in pressure relief, temperature control, and ease of movement. We recommend this mattress for all sleeper types except for side sleepers under 130 pounds.

For a luxury mattress, the DreamCloud is fairly affordable, coming in at an average price point for a standard hybrid bed. DreamCloud is known for their excellent guarantees, which include a 1-year sleep trial and a lifetime limited warranty.

Lab Notes – What Our Testers Thought

“The DreamCloud hits a lot of marks for sleepers, including a luxurious design, mid-range firmness, consistent breathability, and solid edge support. This is one of the most universally appealing mattresses we tried out, especially at its price-point.”

Nectar Mattress

Best Value

Nectar Mattress

Nectar Mattress
Price Range: $499 - $1,199
Mattress Type: Foam
Firmness: Medium Firm (6)
Trial length: 365 nights
Trial length: 365 nights
Warranty: Lifetime, Limited
Warranty: Lifetime, Limited
Sizes: Twin, Twin XL, Full, Queen, King, California King
Who it's best for:
  • People who prefer the close conforming of memory foam
  • Couples
  • Value seekers
Highlights:
  • Three layers of pressure-relieving memory foam
  • Lifetime warranty and generous 365-night sleep trial
  • Medium firm feel presents a versatile choice for most sleep preferences
Nectar Mattress

$599 off! $100 off + $499 in free accessories included.

The Nectar is one of our best mattress in a box picks for sleepers who enjoy the feel of memory foam. Side sleepers receive ample cushioning for the shoulders and hips, ensuring good spinal alignment and less pressure, while back and stomach sleepers feel even body-conforming without sinking too much. Compared to other high performing foam models, the Nectar has an approachable price-point for shoppers on a budget.

What It’s Made of

This model features a thick comfort layer of memory foam over two layers of denser polyfoam. A cover made of polyester, nylon, and polyethylene encases the entire mattress. The surface has a medium firm (6) feel, resulting in a comfortable balance of conforming and support for sleepers across different body type and position groups.

How It Performed

The mattress isolates motion very well to eliminate transfer when moving in bed and to cut down on sleep disruptions for couples. Edge support is also better than average thanks to a fairly thick support core, which stabilizes the bed and reinforces the perimeter against excessive sinkage.

Like other all-foam beds, the Nectar absorbs a fair amount of body heat from sleepers and may sleep a bit warm for some. Another drawback is lack of responsiveness, which may affect how the mattress feels for couples during sex.

The Nectar is much cheaper than the average memory foam mattress, making it a high-value pick. The company also backs the mattress with a 365-night sleep trial and a lifetime warranty, both of which are much longer than average. Nectar offers free delivery to customers anywhere in the contiguous U.S.

Lab Notes – What Our Testers Thought

“I liked the Nectar because the memory foam provides enough cushioning but the mattress never felt overly soft or sagged too much. We think it’s a particularly good fit for side sleepers who need some extra support.”

Helix Midnight Luxe

Best for Side Sleepers

Helix Midnight Luxe

Helix Midnight Luxe
Price Range: $1,099 - $2,349
Mattress Type: Hybrid
Firmness: Medium Firm (6)
Trial length: 100 nights (30-night requirement)
Trial length: 100 nights (30-night requirement)
Warranty: 15 Year, Limited
Warranty: 15 Year, Limited
Sizes: Twin, Twin XL, Full, Queen, King, California King
Who it's best for:
  • Side and back sleepers
  • People who weigh up to 230 pounds
  • Those who usually sleep hot
Highlights:
  • Pillow-top surface with a strong support system creates a balanced medium firm feel
  • Very good temperature control thanks to breathable cover and steady internal airflow
  • Zoned coils protect the edges and reinforce heavier areas of the body
Helix Midnight Luxe

Get up to $350 off + 2 free Dream Pillows

Helix Sleep specializes in hybrid mattresses designed for certain people based on body weight, sleep position, firmness preferences, and budget. The Midnight Luxe has proven to be one of the brand’s most popular models due in part to its balanced construction. The feel is medium firm (6) and best suited to side and back sleepers who weigh 230 pounds or less, but those who want a softer or firmer bed can choose from Helix Sleep’s other models.

What It’s Made of

The Midnight Luxe begins with a pillow-top encasing a comfort layer of soft, adaptive memory foam. This gives the mattress an invitingly plush feel when you get in and out of bed without reducing its overall support and stability. A second memory foam comfort layer and transitional polyfoam layer offer extra cushioning and conforming while keeping your body on a flat, even plane.

The support core contains pocketed coils divided into different gauge zones. Thicker coils along the perimeter deliver push-back and prevent excessive sinkage when you sleep near the edges or get on and off of the mattress. The coils beneath your torso and hips are also stronger to ensure extra support since people tend to carry more weight in these areas. Meanwhile, thinner coils cradle your head, shoulders, and legs. A base layer of dense polyfoam completes the bed’s support system.

How It Performed

The coils circulate air throughout the interior to help the mattress maintain a comfortable temperature. Another component that promotes cooling is the cover made of breathable Tencel fabric derived from botanical sources. Anyone who sleeps hot or resides in a warm climate should find the Midnight Luxe comfortable.

Some shoppers may want the Midnight Luxe’s medium firm feel and balance of contouring and support, but the bed’s sticker price will be too steep. These individuals are great candidates for the standard Helix Midnight. This mattress forgos the pillow-top and zoned interior coils, but it has still proven popular with side and back sleepers who weigh up to 230 pounds.

Those who opt for the Midnight Luxe will receive a 100-night sleep trial and 15-year warranty with their purchase. Ground shipping is free of charge for customers in all 50 states.

Lab Notes – What Our Testers Thought

“Each Helix Luxe model has its strong points, but we all agreed the Midnight Luxe was the most balanced option for people who want both contouring and support. Our hot-sleeping testers also found the Midnight Luxe keeps quite cool.”

WinkBed

Most Comfortable

WinkBed

WinkBed
Price Range: $1,149 - $2,049
Mattress Type: Innerspring
Firmness: Medium Soft (4), Medium Firm (6), Firm (7), Firm (8)
Trial length: 120 nights (30 night requirement)
Trial length: 120 nights (30 night requirement)
Warranty: Lifetime, Limited
Warranty: Lifetime, Limited
Sizes: Twin, Twin XL, Full, Queen, King, California King
Who it's best for:
  • Couples
  • Customers seeking a wider range of firmness levels
  • Hot sleepers who like the feel of memory foam
Highlights:
  • Plush Euro-top offers strong pressure relief
  • Breathable support core and cooling technology keep sleepers cool
  • Four firmness levels
WinkBed

Get $300 off all mattresses

The WinkBed is a hybrid mattress that many sleepers are likely to find comfortable. Four firmness levels – medium soft (4), medium firm (6), firm (7), and extra firm (8) – ensure back, side, and stomach sleepers from multiple weight groups are likely to find a WinkBed that fits their needs.

What It’s Made of

The Euro-top is quilted with gel-infused polyfoam that cushions pressure points. Cooling gel infusions are designed to absorb and dissipate excess body heat. Next is a layer of SupportCell polyfoam keeps your weight evenly distributed across the mattress surface. In the medium soft model, a transitional layer made from denser polyfoam provides a buffer between the Euro-top and support core. A zoned, pocketed coil support core helps sleepers maintain spinal alignment. The cover is composed of a Tencel fabric that keeps the surface cool and breathable.

How It Performed

The WinkBed caters to different sleeper types based on the chosen firmness. Side sleepers and those under 130 pounds preferred the softest option during our tests. The mid-range feel offers the best balance of cushioning and support, catering to a wide variety of sleepers. Back and stomach sleepers weighing at least 130 pounds enjoyed the even sleep surface from the firm option. The extra firm WinkBed Plus is specifically made for sleepers over 230 pounds.

Many couples will enjoy the mattress’ blend of motion isolation and ease of movement, but those seeking greater motion isolation may prefer the softer model. Sleepers should find that the WinkBed also performs well in temperature regulation. Air circulates easily within the mattress’ core, allowing sleepers to stay cool throughout the night, and the Tencel cover offers additional temperature regulation.

Edge support is another strength of the WinkBed. The coils are reinforced along the perimeter to provide pushback and reduce sinkage. Our testers felt secure along the edges of all WinkBed models regardless of firmness level.

The WinkBed ships for free to states within the contiguous U.S. and includes a 120-night sleep trial. The mattress carries a lifetime warranty.

Lab Notes – What Our Testers Thought

“The WinkBed is one of the sturdiest hybrid models we’ve tested firsthand. It offers exceptional support but still manages to feel plush on the surface.”

Nolah Evolution 15

Best for Back Pain

Nolah Evolution 15

Nolah Evolution 15
Price Range: $1,099 - $1,699
Mattress Type: Hybrid
Firmness: Medium (5), Medium Firm (6), Firm (8)
Trial length: 120 nights (30-night requirement)
Trial length: 120 nights (30-night requirement)
Warranty: Lifetime, Limited
Warranty: Lifetime, Limited
Sizes: Twin, Twin XL, Full, Queen, King, California King
Who it's best for:
  • Hot sleepers
  • People who carry disproportionate weight between the shoulders and hips
  • Co-sleepers who normally find hybrids too responsive
Highlights:
  • Breathable proprietary foams shouldn’t retain too much heat
  • Three firmness options to suit different sleep positions and body types
  • Zoned coils provide enhanced midsection support and protect the edges from deep sinkage
Nolah Evolution 15

Get an additional $30 off the Nolah Evolution Mattress for total savings of $730 with code: SF730OFF

A mattress that promotes even alignment can be highly beneficial for people who experience soreness in the lower back during the night. Nolah’s Evolution 15 serves these sleepers well with a plush pillow-top surface and a robust support core containing zoned pocketed coils. The mattress is available in three firmness levels: medium (5), medium firm (6), and firm (8). This selection ensures most people will find a comfortable option regardless of how much they weigh or which sleep position they prefer.

What It’s Made of

The Evolution 15 features 2 inches of adaptive foam quilted into the Euro-top, followed by a proprietary AirBreath border gusset designed to maximize airflow and reduce heat buildup. A second comfort layer of AirFoamICE, an open-cell foam infused with graphite for added cooling. Two layers of denser foam provide transitional support to keep you on an even plane.

In the support core, thicker coils line the midsection to provide extra reinforcement and push-back, where most people tend to carry a disproportionate amount of weight. The coils are also sturdier along the perimeter to reduce sinkage when you get on and off the mattress. The foundational layer is composed of plant-based fiber. A cover made of breathable ArcticTex fabric encases the mattress, and each side is equipped with durable handles to aid with lifting and moving.

How It Performed

Performance ratings for the Evolution 15 largely depend on the firmness level. The medium feel earned the most favorable ratings from side sleepers weighing up to 230 pounds and back sleepers under 130 pounds. This model also excels at motion isolation and pressure relief. The mattress’ medium firm and firm versions fared better with back and stomach sleepers in the range of 130 pounds or more. Highlights for these models include very strong edge support, good responsiveness for sex, and easy movement across the surface.

All Evolution 15 models earned stellar ratings for temperature control, though the two firmer options took a slight edge over the medium feel. The combination of a cooling cover, breathable open-cell foams, and a coil system that promotes steady airflow makes the Evolution 15 one of the most comfortable mattresses we’ve tested for hot sleepers.

Nolah provides free ground delivery for all orders in the contiguous U.S. The company also offers a 120-night sleep trial, but customers can forgo the trial period and reduce their up-front cost by up to $160. The Evolution 15 is also backed by a lifetime warranty against structural defects.

Lab Notes – What Our Testers Thought

“The Nolah Evolution combines the even contouring of deep foam layers with the strong support of a zoned coil system. Each firmness level is distinct from the other two – I preferred the medium firm, but most people will probably find at least one option that works for them.”

Bear Elite Hybrid

Best Cooling

Bear Elite Hybrid

Bear Elite Hybrid
Price Range: $1,865 - $2,798
Mattress Type: Hybrid
Firmness: Medium (5), Medium Firm (6), Firm (8)
Trial length: 120 nights (30-night break-in period)
Trial length: 120 nights (30-night break-in period)
Warranty: Lifetime warranty
Warranty: Lifetime warranty
Sizes: Twin, Twin XL, Full, Queen, King, California King
Who it's best for:
  • Hot sleepers
  • Side and back sleepers
  • People who are unsure of their ideal firmness level
Highlights:
  • Three firmness options
  • Copper-infused and aerated foams meant to limit heat buildup
  • 120-night sleep trial and lifetime warranty
Bear Elite Hybrid

30% off sitewide, plus 2 free Cloud Pillows with mattress purchase

Mattresses made with foam layers are often notorious for trapping heat, but the Bear Elite Hybrid uses aerated foams, phase change material, and a breathable support core to combat this issue. The mattress also comes in three firmnesses – medium (5), medium firm (6), and firm (8) – so most sleepers should find a model that’s equally comfortable and supportive.

What It’s Made of

The top comfort layer is copper-infused memory foam. Memory foam slowly adapts to the body to relieve pressure in sensitive areas, and the copper infusion is designed to conduct heat away from the surface. Next is a layer of aerated polyfoam that acts as a cushion between the comfort system and the coils. This layer has five zones, offering relief for pressure points while supporting the lower back. It also ensures weight is evenly distributed across the surface.

The support core features pocketed coils that provide ample pushback to the hips and shoulders, preventing uncomfortable sagging. The coils rest on a base layer of polyfoam for extra stability. A cooling cover made from a blend of Celliant and polyester encases the mattress. The cover also features phase change material meant to regulate temperature.

How It Performed

Thanks to the variety of firmness levels, our testing team found the Elite Hybrid is a solid choice for a wide array of sleepers. The softest option provided extra contouring that best suited side and back sleepers who weigh under 130 pounds. The medium firm feel is the most versatile, appealing to side sleepers between 130 and 230 pounds and back sleepers up to 230 pounds. Side sleepers over 230 pounds, back sleepers who weigh at least 130 pounds, and stomach sleepers between 130 and 230 pounds appreciated the even sleep surface from the firm model.

The three distinct feels vary in their performance across our testing criteria. Couples who value motion isolation may prefer the softest version, which absorbs more movement and noise to reduce sleep disturbances. Those who value sex or edge support should opt for the medium firm or firm models. All three regulate temperature well, but the two firmer options tend to trap less heat than the softest model.

Bear ships free to customers living in the contiguous U.S. Orders come with a 120-night sleep trial, where customers can return a mattress anytime after the 30-night break-in period. Elite Hybrid purchases come with a lifetime warranty that covers structural defects.

Lab Notes – What Our Testers Thought

“The Bear Elite Hybrid has aerated foams and a breathable support core to regulate temperature. Hot sleepers on our testing team who like the “body hug” of foam appreciated this mattress.”

GhostBed Luxe

Best for Couples

GhostBed Luxe

GhostBed Luxe
Price Range: $1,845 - $3,990
Mattress Type: Foam
Firmness: Medium (5)
Trial length: 101 nights (30-night requirement)
Trial length: 101 nights (30-night requirement)
Warranty: 25 Year, Limited
Warranty: 25 Year, Limited
Sizes: Twin, Twin XL, Full, Queen, King, California King, Split King
Who it's best for:
  • Side sleepers
  • Couples who value motion isolation
  • Sleepers with sharp pressure points
Highlights:
  • Mixed-foam composition contours closely to the body to relieve pressure
  • Proprietary Ghost Ice fabric cover with PCM keeps the surface cool
  • 101-night sleep trial
GhostBed Luxe

30% off all GhostBed mattresses & 2 free pillows. Free weighted blanket ($479 Value) with a minimum $1.5k order.

The GhostBed Luxe is a mixed-foam mattress that absorbs most movement transfer and noise. People sharing a bed with a restless sleep partner should notice little to no sleep interruptions from nighttime movements.

What It’s Made of

The mattress cover is made from Ghost Ice fabric quilted with phase change material engineered to keep the surface cool. Next is gel-infused memory foam that gives the surface a plush feel, followed by cooling fibers designed to increase airflow. A cooling Ghost Ice layer completes the cover. Beneath is a layer of gel-infused memory foam, which adapts to the body to relieve pressure. The gel infusion is meant to absorb and dissipate body heat.

A polyfoam transitional layer ensures weight is evenly distributed to promote spinal alignment. This layer is also more responsive, preventing sleepers from sinking too deeply. High-density polyfoam makes up the support core, offering pushback to the hips and shoulders and limiting uncomfortable sagging.

How It Performed

Our team found the Luxe’s medium (5) feel and plush foam layers best suited side sleepers, particularly those weighing under 130 pounds. Back sleepers under 130 pounds also appreciated the soft feel. These sleepers can comfortably sink into the mattress and find relief for pressure points without too much sagging in the midsection. Compared to other all-foam models, the Luxe performed quite well during our temperature regulation tests. This is mostly thanks to the breathable cover, phase change material, and cooling fibers.

GhostBed ships free to customers living in the contiguous U.S. The company also offers a 101-night sleep trial, which allows sleepers to return mattress purchases after a 30-night break-in period for a full refund. GhostBed Luxe purchases are backed by a 25-year warranty.

Lab Notes – What Our Testers Thought

“The GhostBed Luxe performed exceptionally well during our motion isolation tests, thanks to the foam construction. The mattress produced no movement transfer or noise.”

Birch Mattress

Best Pressure Relief

Birch Mattress

Birch Mattress
Price Range: $1,349 - $2,099
Mattress Type: Hybrid
Firmness: Medium Firm (6)
Trial length: 100 nights (30-night requirement)
Trial length: 100 nights (30-night requirement)
Warranty: 25 Year, Limited
Warranty: 25 Year, Limited
Sizes: Twin, Twin XL, Full, Queen, King, California King
Who it's best for:
  • People who want moderate cushioning from their mattress
  • Those who prefer very responsive surface
  • Hot sleepers
Highlights:
  • Talalay latex gently cradles pressure points
  • A breathable comfort system and steady airflow helps the mattress maintain a comfortable temperature
  • Made with natural cotton, wool, and Talalay latex
Birch Mattress

SleepFoundation readers get $400 off a Birch Mattress.

The Birch Mattress has a medium firm (6) feel to ensure a balanced, responsive surface and very good pressure relief for most sleepers. The latex hybrid design also excels at temperature regulation, and the breathable cover stays cool to the touch.

What It’s Made of

The Birch features a breathable, organic cover. Under this are two comfort layers: one of wool and one of natural Talalay latex. Wool is known for its breathability and ability to wick moisture away from the body, while the latex provides a moderately conforming surface with a bit of bounce to it.

Under the comfort layers is a substantial pocketed coil support core. These individually pocketed coils provide support, allow airflow through the mattress, and tend to isolate motion fairly well.

How It Performed

The Birch mattress stands out in terms of durability, ease of movement, temperature control, and pressure relief. Side and back sleepers should benefit from the strong cushioning, which helps relieve pressure points, and ample support for the lower back. The balanced medium firm feel and supportive build make the mattress a good fit for many body types, though side sleepers under 130 pounds may want to opt for something softer. Our testers also noted very good edge support, which can mostly be attributed to the robust coil system.

Birch ships free to the contiguous U.S. They also guarantee their mattress with a 100-night sleep trial and a 20-year warranty, which is fairly high relative to other mattress companies.

Lab Notes – What Our Testers Thought

“A true medium firm, I liked the Birch for its gentle contouring and excellent overall support. It’s comparable to a lot of other latex hybrids that we’ve tested, but the sticker price is much more approachable.”

Plank Luxe Hybrid

Best Firm/Extra Firm

Plank Luxe Hybrid

Plank Luxe Hybrid
Price Range: $799 - $1,499
Mattress Type: Hybrid
Firmness: Firm (7), Extra Firm (9)
Trial length: 120 nights (30-night requirement)
Trial length: 120 nights (30-night requirement)
Warranty: 10 Year, Limited
Warranty: 10 Year, Limited
Sizes: Twin, Twin XL, Full, Queen, Short Queen, Olympic Queen, King, Short King, RV King, California King, Split California King
Who it's best for:
  • People who weigh more than 230 pounds
  • Back and stomach sleepers
  • Value seekers
Highlights:
  • Reversible design with two exceptionally firm sleep surfaces
  • Coil support core offers outstanding edge support and excellent breathability
  • 120-night sleep trial
Plank Luxe Hybrid

Use this SleepFoundation.org link for the most current discount on Brooklyn Bedding mattresses

Most sleepers prefer a moderate firmness level for their mattress that falls between 4 and 6 on the 10-point scale, making it somewhat difficult to find a suitable bed if you want a firmer feel. The Plank Luxe Hybrid from Brooklyn Bedding is a flippable mattress with a distinct feel on each side. One of the surfaces is firm (7) and contours to a minimal extent while providing sturdy overall support. The opposite side is extra firm (9) and barely conforms at all.

What It’s Made of

The firm side of the Plank Luxe Hybrid features adaptive foam quilted into the cover, followed by a comfort layer of TitanFlex polyfoam that combines the contouring of memory foam with the responsiveness of latex. This side also includes a transitional layer of high-density polyfoam. The extra firm side has less foam quilted into the cover and does not include a TitanFlex layer, giving it a feel distinct from the opposite surface. A shared support core of pocketed coils stabilizes both sides of the mattress.

Customers can choose to add a panel of phase change material, which is sewn into the cover on both sides. This cooling component is engineered to capture and release heat, which helps maintain a comfortable surface temperature. The panel increases the mattress’ price by $100 to $200, depending on the selected size.

How It Performed

As a mattress designed to feel exceptionally firm, the Plank Luxe Hybrid excelled in some areas where softer models usually fall short. Both sides feel very sturdy along the perimeter and shouldn’t sag excessively when you sleep near the edges or get in and out of bed. Temperature control is another major strength. The coil layers promote steady circulation to cool off the interior of the mattress, and the firm surfaces mean sleepers won’t sink too deeply and lose their surface airflow. Those who sleep excessively hot should opt for the phase change cooling panel.

Our testing found back and stomach sleepers feel most comfortable on the Plank Luxe Hybrid. This is especially true of those who weigh more than 230 pounds, but people who favor these positions and fall within the range of 130 and 230 pounds also gave the mattress generally favorable reviews.

Brooklyn Bedding offers an extensive size selection for this mattress. In addition to the six standard mattress sizes, you can choose a split California king, short queen or king, and two RV-friendly options. Even if you add the cooling panel, the Plank Luxe Hybrid has a below-average price-point compared to the average hybrid model. Shipping is also free of charge for all customers in the contiguous U.S. The mattress is backed by a 120-night sleep trial and a 10-year warranty.

Lab Notes – What Our Testers Thought

“The Plank Luxe Hybrid is easily one of the firmest mattresses we’ve tested. The extra firm side was most popular for our back and stomach sleepers over 230 pounds, but the slightly softer side still provides plenty of support and reinforcement”

Leesa Legend

Best Luxury

Leesa Legend

Leesa Legend
Price Range: $1,899 - $2,699
Mattress Type: Hybrid
Firmness: Medium Firm (6)
Trial length: 100 nights (30 night requirement)
Trial length: 100 nights (30 night requirement)
Warranty: 10 Year, Limited
Warranty: 10 Year, Limited
Sizes: Twin XL, Full, Queen, King, California King
Who it's best for:
  • Hot sleepers
  • Side sleepers
  • Eco-conscious shoppers
Highlights:
  • Coil-on-coil construction offers extra support
  • Aerated foams encourage internal airflow
  • Breathable cover made from recycled materials
Leesa Legend

Up to $500 off mattresses + 2 free down alternative pillows

The Leesa Legend is a luxury foam hybrid with a thoughtful design and eco-friendly materials. The breathable cover is made from a blend of recycled polyester from water bottles, and the microcoils and coil support core are made from recycled steel. Customers willing to spend a bit more on a mattress made with high-quality materials may want to consider this pick.

What It’s Made of

The mattress begins with a layer of aerated polyfoam, which closely contours to the body to relieve pressure while facilitating airflow. Next is adaptive memory foam resting on a layer of pocketed microcoils. These coils are zoned at the head and foot of the bed, targeting pressure points in the hips and shoulders. Polyfoam in the center of this layer reduces motion transfer from the coils.

Polyfoam acts as a transitional layer, adding cushioning between the comfort system and the support core. This layer evenly distributes weight across the surface. Pocketed coils make up the support core, with thicker coils lining the perimeter for extra reinforcement. The coils rest on a polyfoam base layer for stability.

How It Performed

The Legend’s medium firm (6) feel and thoughtful comfort system performed best among side sleepers on our team, especially those who weigh at least 130 pounds. The foam layers and microcoils provide targeted relief to a side sleeper’s hips and shoulders, which tend to experience pressure buildup.

We also recommend the Legend to couples who value a nice balance of motion isolation and responsiveness. Thanks to the coil-on-coil design, the mattress offers bounce that many prefer for sex. Meanwhile, the foam layers and polyfoam in the microcoil layer prevent excessive motion transfer. The breathable coils, cover, and aerated foams also keep the mattress quite cool.

Leesa offers free shipping to all 50 states and a 100-night sleep trial. Customers can return a mattress anytime after the 30-night break-in period for a full refund. Legend purchases come with a 10-year warranty, covering structural defects.

Lab Notes – What Our Testers Thought

“Our testers loved the Leesa Legend’s supportive coil-on-coil construction and thoughtful design touches. Eco-conscious shoppers should also appreciate the use of organic and recycled materials.”

Why You Can Trust Us

Every mattress we review undergoes rigorous hands-on testing to determine its key strengths, as well as shortcomings that can negatively affect your sleep experience. For the selections above, we’ve exclusively focused on mattresses from online brands that are compressed and vacuum-sealed for shipping.

How We Evaluated These Mattresses

Our multifaceted testing process allows us to evaluate mattresses for different performance areas such as durability, pressure relief, edge support, and temperature control. Our team consists of testers with different body types and position preferences, so our results should represent the majority of sleepers today. We’ve tested more than 200 mattress-in-a-box options to bring you these top picks, and we’ll continue to reassess and update our list if our findings change.

More information about our product research methodology is detailed below:

  • Motion Isolation: Motion isolation refers to a mattress’ ability to absorb movement transfer when a sleeper changes positions. Mattresses with foam comfort layers tend to perform well in this category.
  • Temperature Control: A mattress with high marks in temperature control should not sleep too hot or too cold. Mattresses constructed with breathable materials like coils, latex, or cotton should regulate temperature best.
  • Pressure Relief: This category refers to a mattress’ ability to evenly distribute weight and reduce soreness in the joints and lower back. Mattresses made with slow-adapting materials like memory foam tend to relieve more pressure.
  • Off-Gassing: Mattresses in a box can produce off-gassing odors after unboxing, especially if they are made with synthetic foams. These odors are thought to be harmless but can be annoying for many sleepers.
  • Ease of Movement: Mattresses that perform well in ease of movement allow sleepers to move across the surface with little effort. These mattresses are usually made with responsive materials like latex or coil support cores.
  • Edge Support: Edge support refers to how well a mattress’ perimeter can bear weight without sinking. When a mattress has a supportive perimeter, sleepers can sit or lie on the edge without feeling like they will fall off.
  • Sex: Many couples prefer a responsive surface for sex, but several factors play a role in a mattress’ performance in this category. A mattress with high ranks in ease of movement and edge support also tend to rank well for sex.
  • Body Weight: Body weight is one determining factor for figuring out your firmness needs. For the most part, the more you weigh the firmer the mattress you will prefer.

Buying Online vs. Brick-and-Mortar Video

What is a Mattress in a Box?

The term “mattress in a box” refers to any model from an online mattress brand that is compressed and placed in a box for delivery. The term “bed in a bag” may also be used. These mattresses are comparable to models sold in brick-and-mortar stores in terms of construction and performance. The key difference is pricing. Online brands face lower overhead costs because they do not operate many (if any) physical stores or employ commissioned salespeople. As a result, mattresses in a box tend to be a cheap mattress alternative.

Preparing a mattress for shipping in a box is fairly straightforward. The mattress is compressed using a large press, encased in plastic, and rolled into a cylindrical shape. This process – also known as “roll packing” – reduces the mattress to a much more compact size, allowing it to fit in a box that can be shipped via standard ground delivery.

A common misconception among consumers is that roll packing causes permanent damage to the mattress. However, mattresses in a box are designed to be highly resilient. Once the plastic wrapping is removed, the layers will expand until the bed reaches its full intended shape. The foams, coils, and other components should fully recover in one to two days without any sort of damage.

What Are the Benefits of Buying a Mattress in a Box?

There are many reasons to choose an online mattress brand over a brick-and-mortar seller. These include the following:

  • Lower prices: As we mentioned above, mattresses in a box tend to be fairly inexpensive compared to models sold in stores. This is largely due to higher overhead costs for brick-and-mortar brands, who need to operate physical locations and employ a large number of sales staff.
  • More convenient shopping: Online mattress purchases can be completed with a few mouse clicks, and do not require any store visits. Buying online can be especially beneficial for people who live in rural areas.
  • No sales staff: Most brick-and-mortar mattress stores employ salespeople who work on commission. These employees are certainly knowledgeable about products and often helpful sources of information for buyers. However, some customers find mattress sales staff a bit too pushy. Online brands often offer live web chat with customer service personnel, but shoppers can browse the website and ask questions as they arise without feeling pressure from salespeople. Most mattress websites also contain detailed product specs and images shoppers can use to compare different brands and models.
  • Free delivery: Thanks to the compression process, mattresses in a box can be shipped for free via FedEx, USPS, and other ground couriers. Online brands generally offer free delivery throughout the contiguous U.S., and some extend this to customers in Alaska, Hawaii, U.S. territories and/or Canada. A small number of online brands offer free White Glove delivery, which includes in-home assembly and old mattress removal. However, most charge an extra fee for this service.
  • Sleep trials: Many consumers are apprehensive about buying a mattress they haven’t personally tried. At brick-and-mortar stores, customers may test out a variety of models. However, lying on a mattress for a few minutes may not provide an accurate representation of how the bed feels night after night. Most online brands offer sleep trials that allow customers to test out a mattress for a certain length of time, during which they can decide whether to keep the mattress, return it for a refund, or (if available) exchange it for a different model. Most sleep trials run at least 90 nights, and some span up to one year in length.

How to Buy a Mattress in a Box

Weighing your own needs and preferences as a sleeper is key to finding the right mattress in a box. Every mattress is uniquely constructed, and suits some sleepers better than others. The ideal mattress for you will likely depend on factors like body type, sleep position, and the local climate where you live.

Firmness level is a good starting point for choosing a mattress. If you weigh less than 130 pounds, sleep on your side, or experience pressure points along your spine, our testing shows you’ll probably feel most comfortable on a softer mattress. People who weigh more than 230 pounds and sleep on their back and/or stomach may prefer a firmer mattress instead, while those in the range of 130 to 230 pounds usually enjoy medium to medium firm mattresses.

A tester lies on a mattress to test the firmness level for side sleepers.

From there, you should take other variables into account. If you sleep with a partner, then you may need a mattress that isolates motion well. Those who reside in hot or humid environments should also consider a mattress with cooling components. Once you’ve nailed down these personal criteria, you can follow these steps to complete your purchase:

Research different brands: In order to find the most suitable mattress, shoppers should take time to learn about different models. This can help them understand differences in construction, pricing, and performance. Some of the best-known online mattress companies include Allswell, Brooklyn Bedding, Casper, Nectar, Saatva, and Tuft & Needle, but buyers can choose from hundreds of brands.

Review the top pick(s): After extensive research, shoppers should be able to narrow down their options to one or two mattresses. Spend a few more minutes reevaluating these models to ensure they are the best choices. Online product specs and images, as well as mattress in a box reviews, can be very helpful during this step.

Chat with customer support: Most online mattress brands offer some sort of live web chat with customer service representatives. They can answer any burning questions about the top mattress picks. If webchat isn’t available, consider emailing or calling the company’s customer service department.

Look for promotions: Online mattress brands often offer coupons and discounts for certain models. In most cases, the details for these promotions will be prominently displayed on the bed’s product page or elsewhere on the company’s website. These discounts may amount to hundreds of dollars off the original asking price. Additionally, purchasing a mattress during a holiday sale can result in big savings. Sales are commonly held during major holidays such as Presidents’ Day, Memorial Day, July 4th, Labor Day, and Veterans’ Day, as well as major shopping days like Amazon Prime Day, Black Friday, and Cyber Monday.

Buy the mattress: As they would on other vendor websites, customers should select the mattress they want in their desired size. They will be redirected to a purchasing page to enter their name, address, phone number, and payment information. They may also be asked to select a shipping method if more than one is available. After all of the required information has been entered, customers may complete their purchase. They should receive a confirmation email from the brand shortly thereafter.

Unboxing

Mattresses in a box may be removed from their packaging as soon as they reach the customer’s residence. The process for unboxing a new bed is as follows:

  1. Bring the box to the bedroom where the mattress will be used. Though compact, the box may be quite heavy since compressing the mattress does not affect its overall weight (a queen mattress can weigh at least 75 pounds). Two or more people may be needed to carry the box into the bed’s intended room.
  2. Open the box and remove the roll-packed mattress. We recommend depositing it onto the foundation or base on which it will be used, since the bed may be more difficult to move once it fully expands.
  3. Carefully cut through the layers of plastic with a pair of scissors. The plastic is somewhat thin, so do not let the blade come into contact with the mattress itself. There will be multiple plastic layers. Before cutting the final layer, unroll the mattress until it is flat and arrange it on the foundation with the head and foot in their appropriate positions. Also, make sure the mattress is not upside down.
  4. Cut the final plastic layer. The mattress will immediately begin to expand, but it will not be ready for use. The shape recovery process may take anywhere from six to 48 hours, depending on the mattress. Don’t worry if the mattress feels excessively saggy at first – this simply means more recovery time is needed.
  5. Don’t wait too long to unbox the mattress. Leaving a bed in its box for two weeks or longer can cause permanent structural damage. Many mattress brands specify the maximum number of days a mattress can remain in its original packaging. If the bed is not unboxed during this time and damage occurs, the warranty may be voided.

Off-Gassing

Most new mattresses emit off-gassing smells due to volatile organic compounds (VOCs), which are released when the bed is unboxed. VOCs are relatively harmless but they carry a distinct chemical odor that many people find unpleasant. In most cases, mattresses will stop producing these smells after a few days, if not sooner. However, some mattress materials are associated with stronger and/or more persistent odor.

Models with foam layers tend to emit more off-gassing smells. Memory foam and all-polyfoam mattresses usually receive the most odor-related complaints from owners. Innersprings, hybrids, and airbeds may also carry off-gassing smells due to foam components in their comfort and transitional layers, but their coil systems often promote strong airflow to make odors dissipate more quickly.

The fewest reports of bothersome off-gassing smells come from latex mattress owners. Although organic and natural latex can carry a rubber-like odor, these materials do not produce VOCs. That said, mattresses with synthetic or blended latex may emit VOCs due to certain chemical fillers in the latex foam.

Off-gassing is rarely a serious long-term issue for mattress owners, but those who are sensitive to strong smells may find memory foam or all-polyfoam beds a bit overwhelming. We recommend a latex, innerspring, hybrid, or airbed model to these individuals instead.

Foundations and Platforms

Rather than placing a mattress directly on the floor, many owners support their bed with a base of some kind. Options for these support systems include:

  • Box spring: Most box springs feature a wooden frame and steel springs encased in a cloth cover. Some newer models have metal frames, as well. Box springs usually measure between 5 and 9 inches thick. They provide sturdy support and the springs absorb shock from sleepers in order to preserve the mattress and prevent wear and tear.
  • Foundation: Also known as a bed frame, foundations often consist of metal or wooden slats that support the bottom of the mattress and thick rails to prevent the bed from slipping off the edges. Foundations do not absorb shock as well as box springs, but they tend to provide more overall support.
  • Platform bed: A platform bed is essentially a slatted foundation with a headboard. These beds may be a bit more stylish than standard foundations. Buyers can also select a panel bed, which features slats along with a headboard and footboard. Canopy and four-poster beds – both of which include corner posts – are also widely available.
  • Adjustable base: An adjustable base can be elevated or lowered at the head and feet to change the sleeping angle. These bases can be particularly helpful for people with neck and back pain, chronic snorers, and others who experience discomfort lying on a flat mattress surface. However, they tend to be fairly pricey.

When choosing a foundation or base for a new mattress, be sure to check the bed’s product warranty. Many brands specify which support systems are acceptable. Conditions may include maximum slat widths and support system materials. Failure to use a proper support system may result in a voided warranty if damage occurs.

How Do You Know an Online Mattress Company Is Reputable?

Vetting brands is an important step during the mattress selection process. How can consumers tell which companies are reputable?

A good starting point is the Better Business Bureau (BBB), an independent nonprofit organization that reviews individual companies. The BBB awards letter grades based on a number of factors, such as time in business, number of customer complaints, and the company’s response (if any) to these complaints. Any brand with a BBB grade of ‘B’ or better should be considered fairly reputable. If the grade is lower, take a minute to read the reasons why an unfavorable rating was given.

Customer and owner reviews can also be a helpful source of information. However, we don’t recommend looking for reviews on the online mattress brand’s website. Many companies nest negative reviews in hard-to-find areas of the site or arrange all reviews in a way that makes them difficult to sort. Instead, visit online forums and message boards dedicated to mattress topics. The review and comment sections of mattress retailer websites may also offer insights into certain brands. Sites that distinguish “verified owners” from other reviewers are most trustworthy. Also consider visiting websites that rate businesses based on customer reviews, such as Yelp And Trustpilot.

Lastly, perform a quick web search about the company to check for recent news and updates. Take time to look into other areas of the brand, as well, such as the country in which their beds are manufactured and feedback from former employees.

Shipping, Returns, and Warranties

Shipping, returns, and warranties are all very important factors to consider when buying a new mattress in a box. When comparing online mattress brands, information for these three topics should be easily accessible and clearly worded.

Shipping

Shipping options: A mattress product page will normally contain an overview of the customer’s shipping options. For more detailed information, customers should visit the site’s dedicated shipping and delivery page. If this page does not exist, then the FAQ page will likely contain all of the important details.

Shipping costs: Standard ground delivery is almost always free for customers in the contiguous U.S. Some brands also offer free shipping to Alaska, Hawaii, and/or Canada. Additionally, a small number of companies provide free White Glove delivery, which includes in-home assembly and old mattress removal. However, most brands charge at least $100 for White Glove services and some include upcharges for old mattress removal. Expedited and overnight ground delivery will usually incur additional fees as well.

Delivery wait times: With standard ground shipping, customers should expect the mattress to arrive on their doorstep within two weeks of the original order. The customer’s address may factor into their wait time, as delivery to rural locations often takes longer. White Glove delivery may take two to three weeks, as the brand will need to coordinate the delivery with local couriers in the customer’s area. The upside to White Glove shipping is that customers can usually pinpoint a delivery date and time, whereas standard ground shipping does not offer a specific delivery timetable.

Ground shipping: Mattresses sent via standard ground delivery will be compressed and shipped in a box. Couriers will leave the mattress on the customer’s doorstep unless otherwise directed. If the customer lives in an apartment or other shared living space, the courier may choose to leave the box at the front desk. An adult does not need to be at the residence when the mattress arrives, and a signature will not be required for these deliveries.

White Glove delivery: Because White Glove couriers travel to the customer’s residence in a large truck, the mattress will not be compressed, but it may be wrapped in plastic or other materials to prevent external damage. Most White Glove deliveries require an adult to be present during the delivery, and a signature is also required. Prior to the couriers’ arrival, homeowners may be asked to clear the path between the front door and the bedroom where the mattress will be kept.

Returns

Return policy: An online mattress brand’s return policy will often be listed alongside information about their mattress sleep trial. As with delivery information, the return policy may be located on a dedicated “sleep trial and returns” page on the company’s website, or in the site FAQ.

Return costs: Online mattress brands almost always offer free returns within the sleep trial period. In most cases, the company will send a courier to the customer’s residence to retrieve the mattress and transport it for recycling or charitable donation. Once the mattress has been received by personnel, a full refund will be issued to the customer using their original form of payment. Some brands charge return fees, but these rarely exceed $100 if the return is requested during the trial period.

Return requirements: If couriers are not available to pick up the mattress, the brand may ask the customer to recycle or donate the bed themselves. Proof of either is often required to receive a full refund. The costs of recycling or donating the mattress may be reimbursed, as well.

Returns after the trial period ends: After the sleep trial concludes, mattress owners should defer to the product warranty. Very few companies offer full refunds for mattress returns beyond the trial period. However, refunds may be granted if the mattress develops a defect.

Warranties

Warranty overview: A warranty is an agreement between a company and a consumer that offers protections against product defects and associated expenses. All mattresses come with some sort of warranty, which pledges the company will repair or replace any defective mattress at little to no extra cost to the owner (minus shipping charges). Most online mattress brands feature dedicated warranty pages on their website. If this information is not easily accessible, reach out to customer service representatives.

Warranty length: A standard mattress warranty spans 10 years in length, and begins either on the date of purchase or date of delivery. However, many brands offer longer warranties lasting 15, 20, or 25 years. “Lifetime warranties,” which cover the product until the owner relinquishes possession, are also fairly common.

Covered defects: Most mattress warranties include a list of “covered” defects that warrant a repair or replacement. These include “sagging depth,” referring to body impressions that form on the surface and can compromise support. A warranty may cover sagging that measures anywhere from a one-half inch to one and a half inches deep, depending on the brand. Other common covered defects include physical flaws in the mattress that cause materials to deteriorate prematurely, or manufacturing flaws related to the mattress cover.

Non-covered defects: A warranty should also list defects that do not qualify for free repairs or replacements. These often include impressions that do not reach the required sagging depth, issues that arise due to changes in the owner’s personal preferences, or physical damage such as burns, cuts, and stains. Problems that occur due to improper support systems or leaving the mattress in its box for too long may also be listed.

Prorated vs. non-prorated: A warranty may be either completely non-prorated or partially prorated. For a non-prorated warranty, the owner will not need to pay additional fees to have a defective mattress replaced. Prorated warranties work a bit differently. They begin with non-prorated coverage, but after a certain number of years owners will need to pay a certain percentage of the original price in order to replace their defective mattress. This percentage usually increases on an annual basis until the warranty expires.

For example, let’s say a 20-year warranty offers 10 years of non-prorated coverage. Beginning in year 11, owners must pay 50 percent of the original mattress price to replace their defective bed. In year 12, this rate increases to 55 percent, then 60 percent in year 13, and so on.

Transferability: Mattress warranties are non-transferable. This means anyone who buys or acquires the mattress from its original purchases will not receive warranty coverage. Additionally, buyers who purchase their mattress from a non-authorized retailer do not qualify for the warranty.

Types of Mattresses Sold in a Box

Every mattress model is unique in terms of materials and construction, but most beds sold today fall into one of five general categories based on comfort layer and support core components. Each type shares consistent features, but there are model-to-model variations in terms of durability, quality of materials, and other performance factors.

Below, we’ll take a closer look at the five most common mattress types.

Hybrid

Definition: A hybrid is a type of innerspring mattress. These models feature comfort layers of memory foam and/or latex, along with a pocketed coil support. Many hybrids also feature transitional polyfoam layers. The average queen size hybrid costs between $1,600 and $2,000, which is a mid-level price range.

Balanced construction: For many sleepers, hybrids represent the best of both worlds. The memory foam and latex comfort layers provide decent body-conforming and pressure relief, as well as motion isolation for couples. Meanwhile, the coil layers ensure strong support and stability for the entire bed. Coils also promote steady airflow to keep the bed cool.

Innerspring

Definition: Innersprings are constructed with polyfoam comfort layers and steel coil support cores. The coils may be encased in fabric, or pocketed, or open and joined together with wires known as helicals. Innerspring mattresses are generally inexpensive, with an average price range of $900 to $1,100.

Responsive and supportive: As the name implies, innersprings have exceptionally bouncy surfaces that conform very little and feel responsive to sleepers. The coils also offer enhanced support, making many innersprings well-suited to heavier people. Many couples find the responsive surfaces very good for sex, as well.

Latex

Definition: Latex is a material derived from the sap of rubber tree plants. An all-latex bed will typically consist of softer, contouring latex in the comfort layer and denser, firmer material in the support core. The latex may be organic or natural, meaning it contains few (if any) chemical fillers. Blended or synthetic latex is made with more chemical components. Latex beds have an average price range of $1,600 to $2,000.

Long-lasting comfort: Latex is exceptionally durable and will not deteriorate as quickly as mattresses made with foam. This is especially true for organic and natural latex. This ensures a healthy expected lifespan for most all-latex mattresses. The material offers a comfortable balance of body-conforming and responsiveness and also sleeps fairly cool due to its natural breathability.

Airbed

Definition: An airbed contains motorized air chambers in the support core. Owners can add or release air from the chambers, which in turn adjusts the overall firmness of the mattress. Standard airbeds contain at least two chambers, but some feature eight or more. Many models are designed for dual-firmness, meaning different firmness levels on each side of the bed for couples with differing preferences.

Customizable feel: The major benefit of airbeds is the high level of customization. The best airbeds can be programmed for a wide range of firmness levels, from soft and closely conforming to extra firm and supportive. However, customers should note airbeds are usually very expensive. The average model costs between $2,000 and $2,400 in a queen size, and some have price-points that exceed $4,000.

Foam

Definition: A foam mattress will feature memory foam and/or polyfoam comfort layers over a high-density polyfoam base. Foam models sold today offer the widest firmness range, and customers can choose from beds that are soft, firm, or somewhere in the middle. The average foam mattress costs $900 to $1,200.

Pressure-relieving cradle: Foam mattresses have a unique feel. The comfort layers contour closely to the sleepers body to create a sinking feeling akin to sleeping “in” – as opposed to “on” – the mattress. This aligns the spine and reduces pressure on the shoulders, back, hips, and other sensitive areas. Most foam beds also excel at motion isolation and do not produce any noise.

Important Considerations When Buying a Mattress in a Box

Lastly, mattress shoppers should make a checklist of important features and qualities when comparing different brands and models. This allows them to make a selection based on their own needs and preferences. Mattress companies can be somewhat misleading with their terminology, advertising beds with “high coil counts,” “universal comfort,” “eco-friendly foam,” and other features that are either exaggerated or inaccurate.

We recommend focusing on the following variables when choosing a new bed:

Sleeping Position
The best mattress for a sleeper depends on their normal sleep position. Side sleepers often need softer mattresses to cradle the body, align the spine, and reduce pressure. Back sleepers usually prefer a balance of body-conforming and support with minimal sinking beneath the shoulders and hips. For stomach sleepers, a mattress should be supportive enough to prevent deep sagging around the midsection.

Mattress Type
As we discussed above, each mattress type offers distinct benefits and advantages. Hybrids and innersprings are very supportive and breathable, but offer limited pressure relief and motion isolation. All-foam and all-latex beds alleviate pressure very well, but many lack strong edge support and sink along the perimeter. Airbeds provide the best customization – but these are also the most expensive mattresses on average.

Contouring
Mattresses that conform closely to the body provide the best pressure relief for sleepers. These include memory foam, polyfoam, and all-latex beds. Hybrids and airbeds may also conform well if their comfort layers are thick enough. Innersprings generally offer little to no conforming.

Quality Materials
Material quality plays a role in mattress durability, as well as pressure relief, temperature neutrality, and other performance factors. Examples of first-rate mattress materials include high-density memory foam, organic or natural latex, and tempered steel coils.

Firmness Level
On a scale of 1 to 10, with 1 being the softest and 10 the firmest, most mattresses sold today fall between 3 and 8. Softer beds tend to be better for lighter people, especially side sleepers. Mid-level firmness may be a better choice for people of average weight. Lastly, firmer beds provide more support (and sag less) for heavier people.

Pressure Relief
A mattress should cradle the body and reduce pressure in sensitive areas, and not cause more pressure to occur. How well a mattress alleviates pressure depends on several factors, such as the comfort layer material, the bed’s firmness, and the sleeper’s body weight and preferred sleep position.

Our testers use pressure-mapping tools to measure the amount of pressure relief a mattress provides.

Edge Support
Some beds sink when owners sit or lie down near the edges. Other beds have thick support systems that reinforce the perimeter to prevent this sinkage. Many of the best mattresses for edge support have zoned base layers consisting of thicker coils bolstering the edges while thinner, softer coils support the sleeper’s body.

Temperature Regulation
The best beds for temperature regulation are usually hybrids and innersprings because their open coil systems generate strong air circulation. Mattresses with thick foam comfort layers often absorb and trap body heat from sleepers, causing them to feel excessively warm. Latex beds may sleep cooler, especially if the latex is aerated with tiny holes to promote airflow to the surface.

Frequently Asked Questions

  • What is the best mattress in a box?

    “Mattresses in a box” are available in a staggering array of styles, so there is no single best option — instead, the best mattress will always depend on your personal needs and preferences. Independent mattress reviews will help you narrow the field once you decide on the mattress type, firmness options, and features you require from a bed.

    Of course, it’s always possible that the mattress you choose won’t be a good fit, even if it is otherwise well-made. Most companies offer money-back sleep trials for this very reason, so double-check the terms and conditions of the sleep trial before purchasing if you’re nervous about choosing the right mattress.

  • How long do mattresses in a box last?

    Mattresses bought from reputable online-based manufacturers should be just as durable as those bought from a traditional showroom, with a lifespan dependent on its type and design rather than where it was purchased. Innerspring mattresses are among the least durable, with the majority lasting 5 to 6 years. Pocketed coil hybrid and all-foam mattresses last slightly longer, at 6 to 7 years, while all-latex beds have an exceptionally long lifespan of 7 to 9 years.

    Different manufacturers offer different warranties for their mattress in a box models, so customers who want their mattress covered for its full lifespan should comparison shop for a warranty that fits their needs.

  • How much do mattresses in a box cost?

    The low overhead costs for mattress in a box manufacturers translate to lower prices for you, but the cost varies significantly depending on factors like mattress type, materials, extra features, and more. The average price can be as low as $900 for a foam or innerspring bed or as high as $4,000 for an airbed.

    While prices usually directly reflect the mattress itself, a higher price doesn’t always mean a better-quality bed. For example, manufacturers who advertise broadly may price their mattresses higher than similar models from lesser-known competitors. As always when shopping online, customers should comparison shop and read independent reviews to ensure they’re getting the best mattress for their money. Mattresses in a box can also be purchased for less than their tag price through discounts and promotions or by waiting for a sales event.

  • Is a mattress in a box different from a regular mattress?

    A mattress in a box is no different from a mattress that you buy in a store. The only way it differs is that it is compressed into a box for shipping. Once you unbox a mattress and allow it time to reach its full shape, it will offer the same performance features that you would find in a similar mattress purchased from a brick-and-mortar store. Mattresses in a box also tend to be less expensive than store-bought beds, since companies do not need to pay for as many overhead costs.

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.

About Our Editorial Team

author
Logan Foley

Certified Sleep Coach

Logan has extensive experience testing sleep products and producing sleep content. She is also a Certified Sleep Science Coach.