Top 10 Firm Mattresses Reviewed and Rated
Tuft & Needle Mattress
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All of the mattresses on this list are worth considering, and they will each suit a different kind of sleeper, but the best one overall, in our opinion, is the original Tuft & Needle Bed in a Box.
- Budget-friendly option
- Premium feel
- Best for combination sleepers
- Adaptive foam
One of the most important factors to consider when purchasing a new quality mattress is firmness. Before you even begin your search, you should know your preference when it comes to this vital category. A majority of people will be satisfied with a medium mattress, but you want to zero-in on your comfort, especially if you’re spending a lot of money on a new bed.
If you’re reading this, it’s safe to assume you’re a fan of a firmer mattress than most people. That probably means you like to sleep on your stomach or back, rather than your side, and you don’t want to sink too deeply into your bed. If that’s the case, you should limit your search to firm mattresses only, and that’s precisely what we’ve done for you here, selecting ten of the best firm mattresses on the market today.
Our Best Firm Mattress Reviews
IN DEPTH REVIEW
- Tuft and Needle Mattress
- Signature Sleep Contour Encased Mattress
- Zinus Extra Firm iCoil Mattress
- Classic Brands Firm Memory Foam
- Ashley Furniture Signature Design
- Swiss Ortho Sleep Spring Contour Mattress
- Perfect Cloud UltraPlush Memory Foam
- Nectar Mattress
- Live and Sleep Elite Firm Support Mattress
- Zinus Green Tea Memory Foam Mattress
Tuft and Needle Mattress
If you’re looking for something to not only fit your body but your budget as well, this is it. The Tuft & Needle flagship mattress offers everything you need and want and gets rid of unnecessary frills and fancy additions to bring the price down and give you the premium mattress experience for a fraction of the cost.
Designed to provide pressure relief, cooling comfort, and optimal support for sleepers of all types and preferences, this mattress is going to appeal to the broadest range of people and wallets. We tested this bed to see whether the lower price also meant lower quality, as well as what type of sleeper would enjoy it most.
Tuft and Needle is a company founded back in 2012 by a couple of software engineers. They began with just one mattress – this one – and now they make all kinds of beds and bedding.
This bed, unlike some others on this list, doesn’t use standard memory foam, but rather Tuft & Needle’s own product – Adaptive memory foam. This makes the bed firmer, which means it will not hug and envelop your body like most mattresses in a box do. Therefore, it is easier to roll around on, and it is perfect for combination sleepers who like to switch positions a lot during the night.
The Adaptive foam also makes the Tuft & Needle more durable than most foam beds, so you should expect it to last a long while.
- Budget-friendly option
- Premium feel
- Best for combination sleepers
- Adaptive foam
Signature Sleep Contour Encased Mattress
If you like the idea of doubling your mattresses lifespan, why not get one that you can flip over and use both sides equally. That’s precisely the idea behind this Contour Encased Mattress from Signature Sleep. Both sides will provide the same level of firmness, so you can freely switch between them, not having to worry about getting a sub-par experience sleeping on one side compared to the other.
A good strategy is flipping the mattress over each time you change your sheets. It only takes a few seconds, although you might need a hand depending on the size you choose to go with. Edge to edge support is provided by the individually-wrapped coil core, coupled with dense foam on each side.
This flippable mattress will arrive rolled and compressed into a box, just like any other mattress in a box ordered online, and it should be quite convenient to set up. Again, depending on the thickness and size you choose, you might be able to set the whole thing up on your own, or you might need a friend, partner or family member to help you out.
There’s a soft and breathable cover on each side, which helps dissipate body heat away from you and allows you to sleep cool. Needless to say, this bed is quite firm, again depending on the thickness. Versions with a lower profile will be firmer, and the taller you go, the softer it gets.
- Four sizes
- Three thickness options
- Breathable cover
- Independently encased coils
Zinus Extra Firm iCoil Mattress
Zinus continues to surprise us with its offering of reasonably-priced, unique beds made of high-quality materials.
This is a hybrid mattress, meaning that it uses both memory foam in the comfort layers, as well as an innerspring design in the support core. This is generally considered to be the best of both worlds, especially for those who prefer a firmer mattress, which fits right into what we’re looking for in these firm mattress reviews.
The incorporated technological innovations, coupled with low cost and high performance of this hard mattress, have earned it a fantastic reputation among customers. In order to make a comfortable yet firm mattress, the people at Zinus used their proprietary Support Plus iCoil springs in the 7.5-inch thick support core. This gives the bed an excellent springy, supportive, and firm base.
The coils are individually wrapped, which means each sleeper will get a customized experience as the coils adapt and contour according to each individual’s body shape. There’s minimal motion transfer as well due to the independent coils system, meaning that you can slip in and out of bed in the middle of the night without worrying about waking up your partner. In terms of comfort layers, there are two, each made of foam.
The top layer consists of comfort foam, while the transition layer is made of high-density polyfoam, which maximizes firmness without sacrificing comfort. You can expect a luxurious sleeping experience from the Zinus iCoil mattress, with its firm and supportive core and comfortable top layers.
- Individually-wrapped coils
- Hybrid mattress
- Great motion isolation
- Excellent sleep experience
Classic Brands Firm Memory Foam
Some of the most popular mattresses out there come from the Classic Brands Cool Gel series. They are very reasonably priced yet highly reviewed, and they include some great features. The Firm Memory Foam Classic Brands mattress is one of the best in the selection, packing all the support you need without removing any of the comfort.
All of the mattresses in this series are CertiPUR-US certified, so this mattress is no exception. It is currently available in a whopping seven different sizes, including Twin, Twin XL, Full, Short Queen, Queen, King, and California King.
This will work well for anyone looking for a bed that’s just above the middle in terms of firmness, and it is probably the softest of all the mattresses we have on this list, so we would recommend it for side, back or combination sleepers that like to sink into the bed a bit more.
At the top of the bed, there’s a stretch-knit cover. These are nice because they are made of very thin material, meaning there’s not much between you and the comfort layer beneath it. Another great feature of stretch-knit covers is that there is very little inconsistency across the mattress, so you’ll get a more even feel compared to a more traditional cover.
The mattress also features Cool Gel memory foam, which is a gel-infused foam which is going to give you enhanced pressure-point relief and help dampen motion transfer between partners.
- Consistent feel
- Cool Gel foam
- CertiPUR-US certified
Ashley Furniture Signature Design
A hard mattress that offers a supportive core and comfy surface, relieving pressure points around your body and making it easier to have undisturbed and uninterrupted nights of sound sleep, comes from Ashley Furniture. With the 12-inch Ashley bed, you won’t be tossing and turning to find the right position as it will feel perfectly comfortable right away.
The solid 8-inch core of this firm mattress promotes proper alignment of your hips, shoulders, neck, and spine, thus preventing aches and pains that are associated with poor sleeping posture.
On top of the support core, there’s a 2-inch transition layer made of thick and dense foam, offering additional support as well as durability while adding a note of comfort. At the very top, two more inches of memory foam will contour and conform to your body, giving you that cradled feeling as you sleep.
There are four sizes available, namely Twin, Full, Queen, and King. Also, Ashley offers not only the 12-inch version of this bed but also a 10’’ and an 8’’. The thinner the bed, the firmer it gets, with the 10’’ version having a 7’’ core and the three remaining inches divided equally between the transition layer and the top comfort layer.
The memory foam used in this bed is high in quality, offering firm support while not detracting from that pressure-relieving plush feel you might get from a softer mattress. There is also a hypoallergenic and mold-resistant stretch knit cover, which allows for more breathability and a cooler sleeping surface, which is great for hot sleepers.
- Resistant to mold
- Firm support core
- Comfortable top layer
- Stretch knit cover
Swiss Ortho Sleep Spring Contour Mattress
The Swiss Ortho Sleep mattress brand has introduced some changes into the bed in a box market by making pocket encased coil spring mattresses not only long-lasting and comfortable but affordable as well.
This extra-durable bed will conform to your body, eliminating any pressure points and keeping your spine aligned throughout the night, no matter which position you choose to sleep in.
The individually wrapped coils ensure excellent motion isolation, meaning that this mattress is great for couples. You don’t have to worry about waking up from your partner tossing and turning in bed. This mattress is also highly breathable and does a much better job of temperature regulation than any firm foam mattress ever could.
Each person’s body will get a unique treatment depending on their size, weight, and sleeping position, with the coils contouring accordingly. The bamboo cover also does an excellent job of keeping the sleeping surface cool and wicking moisture away from the body. You can take the cover off from time to time and wash it to remove any dust mites and impurities.
Swiss Ortho Sleep offers a 10-year limited warranty and comes delivered to your doorstep rolled into a convenient box that’s easy to carry to wherever you want to set up the mattress. It is available in four sizes, namely twin, Full, Queen, and King.
- Great motion isolation
- Affordable price
- Convenient package
- Strong and responsive springs
Perfect Cloud UltraPlush Memory Foam
Perfect Cloud offers some very affordable yet great mattresses for people looking for a more plush, cloud-like feel. This may seem like it doesn’t exactly fit into the category of firm mattresses that we’re exploring in this Buying Guide, but even people who like firm beds might enjoy this one, so we decided to put it on this list.
This bed uses CertiPUR-US certified foams, which keep their shape for a long time and are very durable. They also don’t release any unhealthy gases or nasty toxins that you might find in some other cheap mattresses. The 10-inch UltraPlush Memory Foam bed that we reviewed for this Buying Guide includes three layers. Starting at the bottom, we have a 6.5’’ base support core, which gives the mattress its structural integrity and provides the sleeper with the necessary support.
On top of that, we have 2 inches of gel-infused memory foam to improve responsiveness and bounce, while facilitating cooling and doing a great job at motion isolation as well as temperature regulation. At the very top, the comfort layer is made of 1.5’’ of Plush Air Memory Foam, which is specially designed to dissipate heat and give you a cloud-like feel.
Perfect Cloud mattresses give most sleepers a comfortable experience, and even though they don’t exactly belong in the category of firm mattresses, they tend to get an outstanding response from sleepers who prefer a firmer bed.
If you want to learn more about this product, read our full Ultra Plush memory foam mattress review here.
- Gel-infused transition layer
- Great motion isolation
- Very affordable
- Plush comfort layer
- Firm support core
Nectar is a bed in a box brand that took the industry by storm in 2016, with its fantastic sleep trial and warranty deal and its incredible value. This bed was designed to deliver a balance of comfort and support that never makes you feel like you’re getting trapped in quicksand.
In terms of construction, on the top, the cover is a cotton and tensile blend that feels durable and soft. If you haven’t heard of tensile before, we don’t blame you. It is not used very often by mattress manufacturers, but it is an eco-friendly textile made from wood pulp, and as a bonus – it is resistant to bugs.
The top cover is quilted to a one-inch layer of gel memory foam so it feels plush. This also means it feels nice and cold as well. The cover has a zipper, so you can easily remove it and do some spot cleaning. Altogether, this bed is 11 inches thick and includes three layers of foam in addition to the inch quilted into the cover.
Underneath the cover, you can find three inches of the company’s proprietary LushFoam, which does an excellent job relieving your pressure points in this as well as other Nectar mattresses. It also has gel in it to carry away heat. Next is 1.5’’ of more responsive Adaptive Hi-Core memory foam. This transition layer is what will keep you from dropping too deep and getting in contact with the firmer support layers. At the bottom, there are 5.5 inches of high-density foam, which gives the bed its supportive foundation.
Do you want to know more? Read our in-depth Nectar mattress review here.
- Industry-leading sleep trial and warranty
- A perfect balance of bounce and sink
- Quilted removable cover
- Gel-infused comfort layer
Live and Sleep Elite Firm Support Mattress
Live and Sleep is a firm memory foam mattress that’s available online only, just like many other bed-in-a-box mattresses out there. People who like memory foam should take a closer look since this is an all-foam mattress through and through.
When it comes to issues that people have with memory foam, those usually include sleeping hot, which this mattress seems to be getting around quite well. In fact, during our testing, we haven’t run into any problems in that regard whatsoever, and we tend to be quite sensitive to that particular issue. The people at Live and Sleep seem to have addressed temperature regulation with the construction of this mattress, and the results are easy to notice.
The second thing people tend to dislike about all-foam mattresses is that ‘stuck’ feeling, where you sink too deep into the bed. That seems to happen a lot, even with the best memory foam mattresses, but again doesn’t seem to be an issue that this bed has.
In terms of the feel of this bed, it’s quite clear from the moment you lie down that it is more responsive than a standard memory foam bed. Even if you push down on the surface of this mattress with your hand, you’ll see that the foam comes back into its neutral position very quickly as you remove the hand.
This bed is very comfortable while sleeping on your back, giving plenty of support to your spine and keeping it properly aligned, but it does a surprisingly good job with side sleepers as well considering its above-average firmness.
- Best for back sleepers
- Surprisingly effective for side sleepers
- Responsive foam
- Good temperature regulation
Zinus Green Tea Memory Foam Mattress
The first thing we’re going to mention in this mini-review of the Zinus Gel-Infused Green Tea mattress is that this is a medium-firm bed, making it one of the softer products on this list. The reason for this is that there’s a lot of memory foam in this mattress, which means you’re going to sink pretty far into it unless you’re a lightweight individual.
Another thing we noticed is that because of the large amount of memory foam included in this mattress, it tends to trap a bit of body heat. If you’re someone that tends to overheat during the night and are sensitive to sleeping hot like we are, you should be careful with a memory foam mattress such as this one.
Unlike the previous bed on this list, in this one, the memory foam has a rather slow response to pressure, so you may feel a little stuck at times as the layers take their time to adjust to your position. If you like to have plenty of bounce in your bed, unfortunately, the Zinus doesn’t offer much in the way of that.
On a more positive note, this mattress is excellent for side sleepers, precisely because it allows you to sink quite deep into it and will relieve those pressure points in the shoulders and hips. However, stomach sleepers should look elsewhere, since having a mattress that you sink deep into is not a good idea if you like to sleep on your stomach.
- Best for side sleepers
- Softer than other mattresses on this list
- Great at relieving pressure points
- Classic memory foam feel
Firm Mattress: Buyer's Guide
Softer isn’t always better when it comes to mattresses. Experienced mattress shoppers know this, and there are plenty of people who prefer a firmer bed, but still, a lot of people out there believe that the only qualifying factor for a mattress is how soft it is.
If you prefer to lie on top of your mattress as opposed to sink into it, you’ll have a much better experience with a firmer bed. This also has to do with your preferred sleeping position. Stomach sleepers, in particular, often prefer a firmer mattress because it keeps their spine correctly aligned during the night. The same goes for people who like to spend most of the night on their backs, while side sleepers usually want a softer mattress allowing their shoulders and hips to sink in.
Q: Which type of firm mattress should I choose?
Each mattress type has a set of advantages and disadvantages associated with it. Many people regard hybrid mattresses as the best compromise, giving everyone a bit of what they need. That said, if you don’t need to compromise, you’re better off selecting something that fits you personally.
Q: What if I end up choosing a mattress that’s too firm?
Many mattress in a box companies offer long trial periods, ranging from 30 days up to a full year. Even the shortest trial period of one month should be enough to realize if you’ve made the wrong decision regarding your mattress. Feel free to use the full potential of these trial periods so you would end up with a bed you’re truly satisfied with.
Q: How important is edge support?
That depends on a few factors such as the size of the bed, and how close to the edge you or your partner like to sleep. If you get a narrower mattress, you’re going to want to be able to use every inch of it, and a bed with poor edge support isn’t going to allow you to do that without feeling like you’re going to slide right off.
As always, there are many factors involved with selecting the best firm mattress for yourself. You should put as much thought into your decision as possible, considering the pros and cons of each bed you’ve shortlisted.
In the end, even if you make a mistake and purchase a mattress you don’t end up enjoying, there’s always a way to send it back free of charge and get a different one. Make sure not to settle on a mattress until you are entirely satisfied, though. You’re going to spend a lot of time sleeping on it.