Shopping for the best mattress online is a waking nightmare, and picking the wrong one can literally cause bad dreams or kill your back. It doesn’t help that the online market is flooded with options or that there are more dedicated mattress review sites than stars in the sky. It’s a mess.

WIRED is not a dedicated sleep site, but we did fill a room with 25 of the top mattress-in-a-box models and spent several days unboxing, examining, reclining, and even jumping on each of them last year. Since then we’ve tested about a dozen more. Below are my favorite (and least favorite) mattresses right now. All of the prices shown are for queen-size models.

Be sure to check out our many other buying guides, including the Best Sound Machines and our roundup of the best gifts for people who like to sleep.

Updated November 2021: We’ve added the Awara, Keetsa, Avocado Green, and MyGreenMattress for kids, and upgraded the Casper to runner-up.

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Matt Jancer, Louryn Strampe, and Scott Gilbertson contributed to this guide.

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  • tuft and needle mint mattress

    Photograph: Tuft and Needle

    Hybrid vs. All-Foam Mattresses

    Choose Your Destiny

    In my testing and use so far, I’ve preferred hybrid mattresses. I believe they offer a better night’s sleep in most circumstances and the best balance between the benefits of innerspring and foam mattresses, but you’ll have to decide what’s best for you. There are fantastic mattresses of both types.

    Hybrid Coil + Foam Mattresses: These use a combination of individually wrapped springs and several layers of memory foam. Hybrids seem to offer a good range of firmness options and better support, so you don’t get that sinking feeling. They’re also better at dispersing heat, so you’re less likely to overheat at night. The wrapped coils dramatically reduce motion transfer from an old-school box spring mattress and give better edge support.

    Memory Foam Mattresses: These are only made from layers of foam, usually in a variety of densities and consistencies. They tend to offer better body contouring but can feel too sink-y or unsupportive if they aren’t designed well.

    Innerspring Mattresses: These are the more-rigid mattresses you grew up sleeping on. They don’t come in a box and they typically are made up of metal wiring and springs, covered in various kinds of cushioning and padding.

  • Photograph: Helix Sleep

    Best Overall (I Fell Asleep)

    Helix Sleep Midnight Luxe Hybrid Mattress (14-Inch)

    I have tried out a lot of mattresses in the past few years, but only one put me to sleep just lying on it. Helix’s Midnight Luxe has a plush cushion top and a medium-firm feel that’s relaxing whether you’re in side-, back-, or stomach-sleeping positions. (I’m most definitely a stomach sleeper.) The lights were on, and our testing room was loud, but I dozed off anyway.

    Helix mattresses are hybrids and have a base of individually wrapped springs that are firmer in areas that need more support to prevent back pain, like your lower spine. On top are a stratum of cooling gel foam and denser foams (more info here). It’s cozy, and Helix has a variety of other mattresses that cater to different sleeping positions and firmness preferences. It’s pretty impressive. The only downside is that the price is as “Luxe” as its comfort.

  • Photograph: Casper

    Runner-Up

    Casper Hybrid Mattress (12-Inch)

    Casper is the company that made all these bed-in-a-box mattresses popular, and its experience shows. Its hybrid mattress is as close to a “default” as beds come these days, and for more than a year, it became the mattress I always wanted to switch back to between testing other models. Sleeping on it felt like a palette cleanser—how a bed should feel. Its firmness level is a good balance between soft and supportive, and the springs make it fairly breathable and give it just enough bounce. 

    The Casper Hybrid is a safe, moderately-priced choice for the comfort it offers and should satisfy a fair number of stomach, side, and back sleepers. The mattress has been slightly altered since I last slept on it, but reviews indicate it offers a similar feel. We’ll update this guide with impressions from the latest model once we test it.

Source: The 15 Best (and Worst) Mattresses You Can Buy Online

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