Different Types of Mattresses

8 min read
8 min read

A mattress is the most crucial investment when it comes to sleep quality. However, it’s difficult to choose the perfect one for you from the different types of mattresses. Don’t worry. This blog will walk you through each mattress type to make it easier for you while purchasing one.

There is no one best mattress type for everyone. It depends on your sleep preferences and health conditions. Going through this guide will help you choose the perfect one so that you get a good night’s sleep.

What Are the Different Types of Mattresses?

There are different types of mattress materials. They can offer varying degrees of mattress firmness, from the softest mattress to the hardest mattress possible. Mattress construction is an important aspect here. Let us look at each of them to better understand which one suits you best.

Innerspring Mattresses

Innerspring mattresses have been the most popular mattress type for a long time. They consist of a layer of coils topped with a comfort layer of latex or foam.

Pros

  • Innerspring mattresses are super affordable
  • Spring mattresses provide solid back support
  • You can get them in different firmness levels

Cons

  • The springs can wear out quickly
  • Springs might make weird noises, disrupting your sleep
  • Might be too firm and fail to provide adequate pressure relief

Now, let’s look at the different types of innerspring mattresses.

  • Continuous Coils-  In these mattresses, a single S-shaped wire runs throughout the mattress. Since it is a single wire rather than the traditional coils, you will get more support. Moreover, they are affordable compared to the other types.
  • Bonnell-  Bonnel coils were invented in the 1800s and were used in buggy cushions. Gradually, they were used in mattresses too. These coils look like an hourglass. They might be a bit costlier than continuous coils.
  • Offset – Offset coils are similar to bonnel. But their edges are flattened which provides a hinging effect. So, if you are tired of the squeaking noises of springs, offset springs might be a perfect choice. Moreover, they are supportive and sturdy.
  • Marshall or Pocketed Coils –  They are wrapped or encased coils. The couple is not wired together. Instead, you will find them inside a case. Thus, the coils are insulated from each other.

Pocketed coils provide more support since the coils are encased. Apart from that, they also offer motion isolation. So, you won’t get disturbed even if your partner moves a lot in bed.

Memory Foam Mattresses

NASA invented memory foam in 1966 to improve the quality of aircraft cushions. It was supposed to provide added safety to pilots. Now, memory foam is quite popular as a material in mattresses and other bedding.

Memory foam has a soft and cushiony feel. It aligns with the contours of your body,  providing adequate pressure relief. Thus, it is perfect if you have joint pain. It is also suitable for side sleepers since they require extra softness.

Pros 

  • Provides pressure relief in the joints
  • Keep your spine in its natural alignment
  • Minimum motion transfer to ensure your partner doesn’t get disturbed when you move
  • It’s hypoallergenic and resistant to dust mites

Cons 

  • It might feel too soft for some sleepers
  • Some types of memory foam might be uncomfortable for warm sleepers
  • Foam mattresses are more expensive than innerspring mattresses

Latex Mattresses

If you want an eco-friendly mattress, you can choose one made of natural latex. Natural latex comes from the sap of rubber trees. So, it is hypoallergenic and doesn’t contain harmful chemicals.

Latex also provides pressure relief but not as much as memory foam. It is a bit firmer and has more bounce. So, whether you choose a latex mattress or foam mattress depends on your preferences. If you want a body-hugging feeling, memory foam mattresses are your option. But, if you love bouncy beds, a latex mattress would be your ideal companion.

Pros

  • Made of natural materials and is eco-friendly
  • Resistant to dust mites and other allergens
  • Provides a good bounce
  • Gives adequate support to keep your spine in place

Cons 

  • Might feel spongy and uncomfortable
  • Not suitable for those with latex allergy 
  • More expensive than other types of mattresses

There are two different latex mattress types. Let’s take a look at each of them.

  • Dunlop –  Dunlop mattresses are made by pouring the latex into the mold at once. It is then cooled down. Thus, the mattress is dense at the bottom and soft at the top.
  • Talalay – In this process, the latex is poured into the mould and a vacuum sucks out the air. It is then frozen. Thus, the mattress will have a uniform and consistent feel, unlike Dunlop. 

Hybrid Mattresses

If you want a combination of bounce and softness, hybrid mattresses are the perfect option for you. They provide the bounce and support of springs and the comfort and softness of foam.

Hybrid mattresses have a layer of coils at the bottom. It is topped with a layer of latex or memory foam. So, you will get the perfect blend of support and pressure relief.

Pros

  • They provide a balance of bounce and softness
  • They are perfect for side and stomach sleepers
  • These mattresses are also suitable for couples who can get a custom experience based on their preferences
  • More durable than innerspring mattresses

Cons

  • A combination of springs and foam makes them expensive
  • They can be heavy and difficult to move
  • Hybrid mattresses don’t offer motion isolation. So, you might get disturbed when your partner moves in bed

Other Mattress Types

Apart from these different types of mattress, there are some other types. They might not be so popular. However, these mattress types can suit the needs of individual sleepers.

Adjustable Bed Mattresses

You must have seen adjustable beds in hospitals and clinics. You can adjust the height of the head or foot of these beds according to the need.

Some medical conditions might require you to prop up your head. While at times you might want to raise your feet for comfort and better circulation. These beds come with remotes that allow you to adjust the heights of different parts.

Even if you don’t have any medical condition, you can adjust the height to customize your sleeping experience. After all, who doesn’t want to sleep comfortably?

While buying adjustable beds, you have to choose your mattress with care. That’s because not all mattresses are designed to go with these beds. Most memory foam and latex mattresses fit well with an adjustable bed. However, hybrid and innerspring mattresses are not suitable for these beds.

Pros

  • Excellent for conditions like spondylitis
  • You can adjust the height according to your comfort and convenience

Cons

  • They are expensive due to the complex mechanisms
  • The electronic parts might get damaged and are hard to replace

Pillowtop Mattress

A pillowtop mattress is one of the most comfortable mattress types. They have a thick layer on the top of the mattress which can serve several purposes depending on the material.

A cotton pillow top might give extra softness to the mattress. If you need extra firmness, you can go for a latex pillow top. It will also add to the lifespan of the mattress by making it more durable. At times, pillow tops are meant to add greater breathability to the mattress to make it cooler.

Pros

  • You can customize your sleeping experience without buying a new mattress

Cons

  • A mattress with a pillow top can be quite expensive

Gel or Gel-Infused Foam

Gel-infused foam is one of the several types of foam mattress. If you find a memory foam mattress too hot to sleep, you can use gel-infused foam. The gel will help regulate the temperature, keeping you cool.

Pros

  • Feels softer than memory foam mattresses
  • Doesn’t retain body heat as the gel keeps you cool

Cons

  • They are more expensive than memory foam mattresses 

Polyfoam

Polyurethane foam is called polyfoam in short. It has the same feel as memory foam. Sometimes, polyfoam is used as a casing in spring mattresses.

A type of polyfoam known as high resilience foam is firmer and can be used without any other fibre in mattresses.

Pros

  • Feels like a memory foam mattress
  • Provides more bounce than a memory foam mattress

Cons 

  • High resiliency foam can be quite expensive to manufacture

Futon Bed

A futon bed is one of the simplest types of beds. It consists of a long cushion that you can fold up. So, it serves both as a bed and a couch.

While buying a futon bed, make sure it is at least 5 inches thick to provide adequate comfort. A thin one will not provide enough support and wear out quickly.

Pros

  • It’s simple and minimalistic
  • Occupies less space and is best for modern-day apartments
  • Cost-effective as it serves as both a couch and a bed

Cons 

  • Doesn’t provide adequate support and comfort if it’s too thin
  • It is not durable

 Waterbed

Waterbeds have been around since 3000 BCE. They were quite popular during the 1980s. However, their popularity has faded out these days.

Some people still prefer waterbeds due to their unique features. Moreover, doctors often recommend these beds for therapeutic reasons.

Their support core consists of tubes filled with water. As the water moves along your body, you experience a floating effect.

Pros

  • They can provide pressure relief to pain points
  • You can fill it with hot water for therapeutic reasons

Cons

  • They can be too heavy to lift when full
  • Leaks in the tubes can make your life difficult
  • It doesn’t absorb motion
  • Waterbeds don’t provide much support to the body

Airbed

An airbed can be your perfect companion on camping trips. It’s easy to carry and you can inflate it when required.

You can also use airbeds at home. They have several advantageous features. For instance, you can adjust the level of firmness according to your comfort levels. Some air mattresses allow you to adjust the inflation on each side.

Make sure you buy an air mattress that is remote controlled. Inflating it manually will be quite a task. And you wouldn’t want to lose all your breath inflating a mattress on a trip.

Pros

  • You can adjust the firmness
  • It’s light and easy to carry around

Cons

  • Even a small leak will render the mattress useless

Organic Mattress

If you care about the environment, organic mattresses are the perfect option for you. They are recognised by certifications like Global Organic Latex Standard ( GOLS) or Global Organic Textile Standard ( GOTS). These certifications indicate the mattresses have been manufactured naturally without harming the environment.

Organic mattresses are made of wool, organic cotton, or natural latex. These materials do not contain any chemicals that can affect the environment. Springs, coils, and foam are non-biodegradable. Moreover, they contain harmful chemicals that are not eco-friendly.

Final Word

Now that you have gone through a mattress type comparison, you can choose the best type of mattress to give you a sound sleep.

Your sleep quality will determine how you spend your day. So, never compromise with it.

There is no single best mattress type that suits everyone. It depends on your preferences and medical conditions. However, a medium-firm memory foam mattress is suitable for most sleepers.

You need a firm mattress to provide adequate spinal support in case of back pain. A latex mattress has the perfect firmness that will keep your spine in its natural alignment.

Hybrid mattresses are the most common type of mattress because they provide the perfect blend of support and softness.

Latex mattresses are the most durable since they don’t wear out easily. You can also use a pillow top mattress for greater durability.

 Pillowtop mattresses have a consistent feel throughout. However, euro top mattresses    are sewn with the edges of the mattresses rather than the top. So, the filling is not evenly distributed.

Among the different types of mattress filling, natural latex is the best as it keeps allergens at bay. Cotton and wool are also good fillings since they are breathable and don’t retain body heat.

Take a Sleep Quiz

Find out if a memory foam, hybrid, or latex mattress is the right mattress choice for you.

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Take a Sleep Quiz

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Meet Our Review Board

Each week our team researches, writes and collaborates with industry leaders to bring you simple easy-to-read sleep information.

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Sleep Coach

Authored by healh experts and journalists

Fact checked and science-backed

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Meet Our Review Board

Each week our team researches, writes and collaborates with industry leaders to bring you simple easy-to-read sleep information.

David Bridge

Sleep Coach

Siddhesh Tiwatne

Sleep Coach

Authored by health experts and journalists

Fact checked and science-backed

Medically reviewed by physicians

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Meet Our Review Board

Each week our team researches, writes and collaborates with industry leaders to bring you simple easy-to-read sleep information.

David Bridge

Sleep Coach

Siddhesh Tiwatne

Sleep Coach

Authored by health experts and journalists

Fact checked and science-backed

Medically reviewed by physicians

Meet Our Review Board

Each week our team researches, writes and collaborates with industry leaders to bring you simple easy-to-read sleep information.

David Bridge

Sleep Coach

Siddhesh Tiwatne

Sleep Coach

Authored by health experts and journalists

Fact checked and science-backed

Medically reviewed by physicians