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THE GOOD. Below-average prices yet above-average owner satisfaction • strong return policies • limited heat retention • adequate motion isolation • some springiness • silent • at least fair conforming ability & support.
THE BAD. Firmness options limited • too firm for some, especially lighter people • edge support often no better than fair • thickness often below average • availability mostly limited to online.
THE MATTRESSES. A foam mattress (by Sleep Like The Dead's definition) consists of at least 79 percent regular / non-memory foam.
Foam Mattress Ratings – Overall As A Group
What Is (And Is Not) a Foam Mattress
– owner satisfaction
– prices and value
– durability / longevity
– off gassing odor
– heat retention
– motion isolation
– edge support
– return policies
– customer service
Foam Mattress Brand Ratings
The ratings below show how foam mattresses compare against the average mattress based on consumer experiences.
|Owner satisfaction||b||Foam mattresses overall have 79% owner satisfaction. More.|
|Affordable||B||They are often priced $350-$1440 with the average queen costing about $870. More.|
|Durability / longevity||C+||Can vary somewhat by brand / model, but overall appears to be slightly better than average (6-years). More.|
|Support||B-||Spport tends to be adequate for the clear majority of owners.|
|Minimizes pressure||B-||Foam mattresses tend to moderately conform and contour to a person's body resulting in even weight distribution.|
|Reduced (back) pain||B-||Their support and conforming ability results in somewhat above-average potential for back pain relief. (See mattresses and pain relief for general analysis.)|
|Easy to move on||B-||Foam mattresses tend to not conform to a degree that makes moving on the bed and changing positions difficult.|
|Easy to get on and off||C-||On average, the mattresses are about 10 inches thick – thinner than the average mattress (11 inches). This can make getting on and off the bed somewhat difficult for taller people. A high-profile foundation can help.|
|Motion isolation||B||Foam mattresses perform at least adequate for most people in regard to absorbing the movement made by one person so as to minimize disturbance to another. More.|
|Edge support||D+||Can vary somewhat by model, but support near the far edges may be inadequate for sleeping or sitting, especially for larger people. More.|
|No sleeping hot||B-||Significant and bothersome heat retention is reported by about 6% of owners (1 in 17). More.|
|No initial off gassing odor||B||This problem can vary somewhat by brand and individual mattress, but on average no more than 7% of owners (1 in 14) report a significant, enduring initial off gassing odor. More.|
|Sex friendly||C+||See mattresses and sex for analysis.|
|Avg-sized person friendly||B||For people 130-230 pounds, back sleepers have the highest satisfaction. About 10% of side sleepers – especially those with a body mass index under 21 or broad shoulders and / or hips – report excessive firmness.|
|Heavy person friendly||b-||While support tends to be adequate, the mattresses may lack top layer thickness to provide ideal comfort for people over 230 pounds, especially side sleepers. Also, bottoming out is possible when sitting due to below-average thickness.|
|Light person friendly||c||About 25% of people under 130 pounds – especially side sleepers with a body mass index under 21– report excessive firmness and or back pain. People of this size seem unable to exert the pressure needed for the mattress to comfortably conform to their bodies.|
|No noise||a||Foam mattresses are silent under all conditions.|
|No topper needed||C||About 8% of owners (1 in 12) on average need to add a topper to the mattress to improve comfort.|
|Short break in period||C+||Break-in tends to be longest for people under 150 pounds. Most owners report the mattress breaking in within two weeks.|
|Easy to maintain||C+||Nearly all foam mattresses are no-flip. Head-to-foot rotation one to three times annually may help to maintain comfort and support.|
|Easy to handle, lift, move||B-||Foam mattresses weigh around 75 pounds (queen). They can be floppy which can undermine ease of moving / transport. More.|
A foam mattress consists mostly or entirely of foam. Specifically, by our definition, a foam mattress consists of at least 79% foam. In other words, a mattress is not considered a foam mattress if more than 21% of it consists of another material(s) besides foam such as memory foam, springs, and or latex.
Also, a foam mattress – in addition to using foam for support – often uses foam for its top comfort layer as opposed to another material such as memory foam.
The following charts indicate what tends to be true for mattresses and / or mattress companies of each type; individual performance may vary.
Foam mattresses overall have 79% owner satisfaction. The various models / brands rate mostly similar.
Learn how owner satisfaction is determined.
The average price of a foam mattress is about $870 for a queen. This is about 40% less than the price of the average mattress.
The below-average price for a foam mattress combined with above-average owner satisfaction results in a solid owner opinion of value.
Foam mattresses overall likely have about average durability / longevity.
* partial estimate.
Off gassing refers mainly to an odor that a mattress may release when it is new due to its composition and packaging. Foam mattresses tend to off gas less often and less strongly than the average mattress.
About 6% of foam mattress owners report sleeping hot – a lower-than-average rate. An additional 15% report significant warmth but not to a bothersome degree most of the time.
A mattress with effective motion isolation absorbs movement and does not transfer it across the bed to disturb another person.
Support near the edges of a foam mattress may be inadequate for sleeping / sitting, especially for larger people.
The average queen-sized foam mattress weighs about 75 pounds – about 20 pounds lighter than the average mattress. Handles or grips are almost never present.
Foam mattresses are about 10-inches thick on average – approximately an inch thinner than the average mattress.
Most foam mattress manufacturers offer at least a 100-day return window with no return fee. (General analysis: returning a mattress: what to know.)
Foam mattress companies tend to provide better customer service compared to that offered by the average mattress company.
The table below includes several of the most popular foam mattresses.
|Casper||Helix||Leesa||Tuft & Needle|
|The Casper||The Essential||The Helix||The Leesa||The Tuft & Needle||The Mint|
|Owner Satisfaction (sample)|
|80% (273)||74% (32)||81% (115)||78% (224)||79% (242)||80% (20)|
1.5" memory foam
1.5" memory foam
2" pocketed microcoils
2" memory foam
|3" foam||5" foam|
|med-firm (6 to 6.5 on 1-10 scale)||med-soft (3.5 to 4 on 1-10 scale)||custom- izable; med-soft to med-firm (3.5 to 7.5 on 1-10 scale)||med-firm (6.5 on 1-10 scale)||med-firm (6.5 to 7 on 1-10 scale)
||med-firm (6 to 6.5 on 1-10 scale)|
|10 years non prorated||10 years non-prorated||10 year non-prorated||10 year non-prorated|
|100 day; no fee||100 day; no fee||100 day; no fee||100 day; no fee|
|White Glove Delivery Available (For Fee)|
|yes||no||yes, including old mattress removal||no|
|In Business Since|
|SLTD Rating of Company|
limited number of Casper stores
West Elm stores
limited number of stores
|Casper||Helix||Leesa||Tuft & Needle|
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