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The Mattress Type Comparisons You Can Actually Trust – 2018

The comparisons below evaluate each mattress type overall; the performance and specifications of individual brands / models may differ somewhat.

Pros and Cons Comparison

Select a mattress type for details and brand ratings.

Innerspring Widely available
Many models affordable
Many firmness options
Often sex friendly due to bounce
Consumer familiarity
Below-average owner satisfaction
Below-average durability / lifespan
Below-average conforming ability
Poor motion isolation possible
Noise possible
Foam Many models affordable
Limited heat retention
Motion isolation
No noise
Strong return policies
Firmness options limited
Too firm for some
Below-average edge support
Often below-average thickness
Usually available only online
Memory Foam Widely available
Conforming ability
Motion isolation
Several models affordable
No noise
Initial odor / off gassing possible
Heat retention possible
Little or no bounce
Below-average ease of body movement
Conforming / support combo
Many firmness options
Motion isolation
Durability / lifespan questionable
Somewhat pricey
Heat retention possible
Often heavy
Air Adjustable support / firmness
Each half of bed has own adjustment
Above-average pain-relief potential
Above-average longevity potential
Difficulty of (initial) use
Above-average cost esp long term
Breakdown / malfunction possible
Some noise
Assembly often required
Latex Customizable in some cases
Many firmness / price options
Often appeals to "green" buyers
No noise
Heat retention possible
Initial odor possible
All-latex varieties heavy
Limited availability
Futon Often inexpensive
Dual-use potential (sofa and bed)
Variety of styles / colors
Below-average longevity
Too thin / firm for some
Initial odor possible
Water Temperature control
Contours to body
Extended longevity possible
Often inexpensive
Largely dust-mite free
Can be punctured
Very heavy
Extensive set up / assembly
Noise and initial odor possible

Detailed 22-Point Comparison

Select a mattress attribute or mattress type for details.

  Inner Spring Foam Memory Foam Hybrid Air Latex Futon
Owner satisfaction D+ B B c b- b C+
Consumer familiarity A C+ B C- C D C-
Many Models affordable a- B B+ d+ c- D+ A
Longevity potential D+ C+ B- c A b C-
support potential B B c+ B- a- C+ C
Conforming, Adaptive C- B- A- B b- C+ D+
(Back) pain relief C- C+ b C+ b+ b- C-
No Initial odor C+ B- d D+ C+ c C-
Motion isolation c B A B C+ b- C
No noise c- A A B- d+ a C+
No sleeping Hot B- B- d+ d+ c+ c- B
Easy to move on B- B d+ C- b c+ B-
Short break in C+ C d+ D+ b- c B-
Sex Friendly B- C+ c b- c b- C
Adjustable firmness d- D d d- a B- D-
Easy to lift, move c B- c- d b D+ A-
Low maintenance c+ B- C+ C- d c C-
Customizable d C- d d d B D
No assembly a A a a d C+ A
In-store Availability a D+ a- b D+ d C-
Return policy C B+ C C+ C- B- C

Construction Comparison

Select a mattress type for details and brand ratings.

Innerspring Regular foam
Less than 1.5" of memory foam (select models)
Innerspring coils
Foam Regular foam (most models)
Various materials (select models)
Regular foam
Memory Foam Memory foam Regular foam
1.5" or more of memory foam
Regular foam (most models)
Innerspring coils
Air Regular foam (most models)
Memory foam (select models)
Air chamber(s)
Regular foam (select models)
Latex Latex
Memory foam (select models)
Regular foam (select models)
Innerspring coils (select models)
Futon Fiber material (most models)
Regular foam (select models)
Innerspring coils (most models)
Regular foam (select models)
Fiber material (select models)
Water Water chamber(s)
Regular foam (select models)
Water chamber(s)

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