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THE MATTRESS. "Hybrid" most often refers to an innerspring-based mattress that uses memory foam in the comfort layer – usually at least two inches of the material.
THE GOOD. Hybrids tend to provide an effective compromise between comfort / pressure-point relief and support. Many firmness options are available. Motion isolation tends to be better than average as does suitability for sex.
THE BAD. Durability / longevity is likely no better than fair in most cases. Prices in general are about 25 percent higher than the price of the average mattress. At least 12 percent of owners report bothersome heat retention. Weight is often substantial making transport and handling difficult especially for one person.
Hybrid Ratings Overall
What Is A Hybrid
Memory Foam Thickness and Hybrid Characteristics
Prices and Value
Durability / Longevity
Suitability For Sex
Popular Model Ratings, Prices, And Specs
Make Your Own Hybrid
The table shows how hybrid mattresses overall rate in relation to other mattress types. (See more on how they compare.)
|Owner satisfaction||C||Most hybrids are somewhat new to market and therefore owner experience data is somewhat limited. But based on available data, hybrids overall have 73% owner satisfaction. This rate is identical to that of the average mattress. More.|
|Estimated durability / longevity||C||Available data as well as data for other innerspring-based mattresses suggests no better than fair durability / longevity for the hybrid category overall. More.|
|Affordable||D+||Prices vary – $550 to $4000+ – mainly due to design and amount / type of material used. Average price is about $2200. A foundation often costs an additional $100-$300 depending on size. More.|
|General support||B||Hybrids – especially firmer models – often provide a more supportive feel (less sinking in) than all-foam mattresses. Sagging, however, can undermine the bed's ability to properly support a sleeper's weight.|
|Edge support||B-||Support for sleeping / sitting near the far edge of the mattress can vary (firmer models tend to perform better), but overall such support tends to be above average especially compared to all-foam mattresses.|
|Less (back) pain||C+||Hybrids provide relief from pain, especially back pain, for at least 15% of owners. Mattress sagging, however, may cause discomfort and pain. (See mattresses and pain relief for general analysis.)|
|Conforming ability||B||Hybrid mattresses tend to provide above average conforming (well-distributed) support which often results in reduced pressure points – especially if at least two inches of memory foam are present.|
|Easy to move on / get up off||C-||Hybrids generally offer more resistance to movement than innerspring beds but somewhat less resistance than most memory foam beds.|
|Motion isolation||B||Motion isolation refers to how well the bed keeps movement made by one person from being felt by another. Motion isolation is good especially for hybrids with at least two inches of memory foam. More.|
|No noise||B-||Hybrids are mostly quiet with only rare squeaking, creaking and clunking of their spring system.|
|No initial odor / off gassing||D+||About 14% of hybrid mattress owners complain of significant off gassing which is a chemical-like or musty odor that the mattress may release when new due to the manufacturing and or packaging process. More.|
|Not a heat trap||D+||About 12% of owners report bothersome heat retention. An additional 20% report above average warmth but not to a bothersome extent most of the time. Softer models often mean more heat-trap potential. More.|
|Good for sex||b-||On this issue, hybrid mattresses tend to perform above average as they can provide conforming comfort in addition to some bounce. See mattresses and sex for general analysis.|
|No topper needed||B||Less than 7% of owners report needing to add a topper to their mattress to improve comfort / softness. This is lower than the rate for both innerspring mattresses and foam-based mattresses.|
|Heavy person friendly||B||People 230+ lbs tend to exert enough pressure to fully benefit from the conforming ability of the mattress. Large people, however, may sink too far for comfort into models with soft firmness and thick comfort layers.|
|Light person friendly||C-||People under 130 lbs tend to not exert enough pressure on the mattress to benefit from the contouring ability of the memory foam. This can result in excessive pressure points especially from firmer models.|
|Short break in period||D+||Break-in time can be longer than average. Most owners report break in within one month. More.|
|Easy to maintain||C-||Hybrids are almost always no-flip. Rotating them (head to foot) may prevent or combat wear / sagging. Heavy weight can make this difficult to do especially for one person.|
|Easy to move, handle, lift||D||A queen hybrid on average weighs 115 lbs or more. Pricier, thicker models weigh the most. Hybrids tend to be difficult to move, handle and lift especially for one person.|
"Hybrid" most often refers to an innerspring-based mattress containing a significant amount of memory foam. Consumers should not, however, assume that these mattresses are true hybrids – in other words, that they consist 50% of memory foam.
While the amount of memory foam that a hybrid mattress has can vary by model, the average hybrid has only two inches of memory foam, which is less than 20% of total mattress thickness. (In addition to springs and memory foam, these mattresses often contain significant amounts of regular foam.)
Hybrid mattresses are most distinguished from other mattress types by the fact that they offer a unique combination of characteristics. These characteristics depend mostly on how much memory foam the mattress has.
As the chart below shows, those hybrid mattresses with 1.5 inches or less of memory foam tend to have a significant degree of innerspring mattress characteristics and only limited memory foam mattress characteristics.
Those hybrids with 1.5 to 3 inches of memory foam tend to provide an approximate equal mixture of innerspring mattress and memory foam mattress characteristics.
And those hybrids with 3 inches or more of memory foam tend to provide a significant degree of memory foam mattress characteristics and limited innerspring mattress characteristics.
Spring-like characteristics include 1) a relatively high level of support, 2) little weight sensitivity – meaning you sleep on top of the mattress as opposed to sinking somewhat, 3) ease of moving on and getting up off the bed, 4) at least some bounce, and 5) limited motion isolation / couple friendliness. Learn more about innerspring mattress characteristics.
Foam-like characteristics include 1) conforming ability – meaning that the mattress molds to your body, 2) weight sensitivity – meaning you sleep in the mattress to some extent as opposed to sleeping on top, 3) little if any bounce, and 4) a high degree of motion isolation / couple friendliness. Learn more about memory foam mattress characteristics.
Combination characteristics consist about equally of spring and foam characteristics.
Hybrids overall perform average compared to other mattress types in owner satisfaction.
The average price for a hybrid mattress is about $2200 for a queen. This is at least 25% more than the price of the average mattress.
The high average price for a hybrid combined with an average owner satisfaction rate overall results in below-average owner opinion of value.
Hybrid mattresses overall likely have about average durability / longevity.
* partial estimate.
Sagging is the loss of a level and supportive sleep surface. Sagging can include the development of body impressions, "sink holes," and "peaks & valleys." About 17% of hybrid owners report the problem which makes sagging the top owner complaint.
* estimated to be at least 1.5" depth
** partial estimate
Off gassing refers to a chemical-like or musty-like odor that a mattress may release when it is new due to its composition and packaging. Hybrids tend to off gas more often and more strongly than other mattress types.
About 12% of owners report sleeping hot – a higher than average rate due likely to the presence of the memory foam. An additional 20% report above average warmth but not to a bothersome extent most of the time.
A mattress with good motion isolation absorbs movement and does not transfer it across the bed. Hybrid mattresses perform significantly better than the average mattress on this issue, only beaten by memory foam mattresses.
Before a mattress is broken in, the sleeper may find the firmness to be excessive. A mattress is considered broken in when the comfort layer has softened with use about as much as it is capable of. Hybrids, especially firmer models and those with thick memory foam layers, tend to have a longer break-in period than other mattress types.
Hybrids rate better than most other mattress types on this issue. Learn more: Sex and mattresses comparison.
The table below includes many popular and / or widely available hybrid mattresses.
- The models below may have different names at different retailers. They tend, however, to be merely renamed (and perhaps slightly modified) versions of the models below. Retailers may provide specifications of the models they sell to help you to comparison shop.
- Prices below are usually for a mattress only, not a foundation which often costs $100-$350 depending on mattress size.
- The price ranges below are due to the availability of different models within each line. Models in the higher end of a price range tend to be thicker and / or have better material.
|Tempur-Pedic Flex||Posturepedic Hybrid||Beautyrest Black||Serta icomfort Hybrid / iSeries||Beautyrest Hybrid|
|Owner Satisfaction (sample size)|
|82%* (339)||71%* (158)||69% (87)||67%* (139)||65%* (86)|
|$1600- $3200||$750-$1620||$1125- $3500||$650-$2950||$820- $1930|
|$1950- $3550||$780-$1800||$1470- $4000||$900-$3000||$1130- $2200|
|$2100- $3700||$1000-$2000||$1575- $4300||$1075-$3275||$1180- $2420|
|$2700- $4300||$1350-$2400||$2000- $5040||$1600-$3900||$1630- $3080|
|pocket coil**||pocket coil**||pocket coil**||pocket coil in coil**||pocket coil**|
|3-5" of memory foam (estimate)
3" of gel memory foam (estimate) on Flex Supreme Breeze***
|2-5" regular foam
0-4" full layer gel memory foam***
.5" gel memory foam in center third of mattress***
1" memory foam (select models)
|.5-2.5" of memory foam
.5-.75" of gel regular foam***
1.5" of regular foam
1-2" of latex (select models)
2" of micro diamond- infused memory foam (select models)
micro coils (select models)
|2-4.5" regular foam
.5-3" gel memory foam***
2" memory foam (select models)
minicoils (select models)
|.5-5" of memory foam
0-2" of gel memory foam***
0-5" of regular foam
.5" latex (select models)
.3" memory foam center third (select models)
|med-soft to med-firm||soft to med-firm||soft to firm||soft to firm||soft to firm|
|10 years non prorated||10 years non-prorated||10 year non-prorated||10 years non prorated||10 year non-prorated|
|Tempur-Pedic Ratings||Posturepedic Ratings||Beautyrest Ratings||iComfort Hybrid / iSeries Ratings||Beautyrest Ratings|
* Most hybrid models are fairly new to the market and have limited owner experience data available. As a result, owner satisfaction rates below are based on a combination of available owner experience data as well as previous- or similar-model satisfaction rates or the estimate of Sleep Like The Dead.
** Hybrids tend to use pocket coils. Learn more about them and how they compare to other coil types.
** Gel memory foam tends to reduce heat trap complaints by 30% especially if at least two inches of the material are present.
Making your own hybrid often minimizes cost and potential durability problems.
You can make a simple hybrid mattress yourself by buying a firm non-hybrid innerspring mattress, that is, one with minimal padding. (Just about any mattress brand offers at least one "firm" model.) The advantage of this is that firm models tend to have fewer and less severe sagging problems than do models with thick comfort layers / pillow tops. Firm models also tend to be highly affordable because they lack significant padding.
Then purchase a memory foam topper for the mattress. The advantage of this is that if the topper deteriorates, compresses or sags, then only it needs to be replaced as opposed to the entire mattress. (Of course, there are some disadvantages to having a topper.)
Such a setup will likely lack the sophistication of pre-produced hybrids, but it will nevertheless provide at least basic hybrid mattress characteristics.
Ratings are based on 810+ owner experiences of various memory foam / spring hybrid mattress models including but not necessarily limited to Serta iComfort Hybrid / iSeries, Sealy Posturepedic Hybrid, Simmons Recharge Hybrid and Black, and Tempur-Pedic Flex.
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