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Best Memory Foam Mattress

First developed by NASA in the 1970s for use on spacecraft, memory foam is now one of the most popular mattress materials around. And for good reason! It’s plush, gentle, pressure-relieving, and super cozy, working to alleviate tension across the body and keep the sleeper cradled in a cushiony embrace.

These days, the material’s incorporated into a ton of different mattresses, but which one’s right for you? Stick around for my round-up of the best memory foam mattresses of 2019 to find out!

Keep reading below for a full breakdown of my favorite memory foam beds. At the end, I’ll also go into the material’s biggest draws (and drawbacks) and provide you with some helpful information for finding the kind of memory foam mattress that’s going to be perfect for your specific sleep needs!

Best for Side Sleepers
Layla Mattress
Layla Mattress
Layla Mattress

A flippable design gives you two firmnesses in one with the Layla. For this memory foam list we're highlighting the soft side - which has a very pressure relieving and conforming feel. Great for side sleepers or anyone that prefers a soft mattress!

Best for Back Sleepers
Bear Mattress
Bear Mattress
Bear Mattress

The Bear mattress has a lovely medium firm feel that should suit most sleepers out there. While the firmness may be average, the sleeping experience is far above. Use code SLEEPOPOLIS to save 20% on your purchase!

Best For The Money
Nectar Mattress
Nectar Mattress
Nectar Mattress

Nectar is one of the most popular memory foam mattresses because it has an incredibly comfortable feel and a very affordable price. If you're looking for a high quality memory foam experience without a crazy price tag, I'd start with Nectar.

Best for Combo Sleepers
WinkBeds MemoryLux Mattress
WinkBeds MemoryLux Mattress
WinkBeds MemoryLux Mattress

The WinkBeds MemoryLux has thick layers of memory foam to provide great pressure relief and the classic contouring feel of sinking into bed. Enjoy $200 off your order with the code SLEEPOPOLIS200!

Best for Hot Sleepers
Puffy Mattress
Puffy Mattress
Puffy Mattress

As the name suggests, the Puffy mattress sleeps like a cloud, I found that their comfort layer provides the classic memory foam feel while sleeping really cool for a memory foam mattress.

Best Luxury Mattress
Tempurpedic LuxeAdapt Mattress
Tempurpedic LuxeAdapt Mattress
Tempurpedic LuxeAdapt Mattress

Thick layers of memory foam softly cradle the shoulders and hips, offering great pressure relief for side sleepers!

Best for Couples
Loom & Leaf Mattress
Loom & Leaf Mattress
Loom & Leaf Mattress

One potential con of memory foam is that it's not exactly eco-friendly. Loom & Leaf goes the extra mile with their design to include plant-based foams, making it one of the most eco-friendly memory foam mattresses on the market.

Methodology

Before I dive into my selections, I just want to acknowledge that all of these picks are based on my personal preference. Everybody and every body is different, so I suggest using these as a starting off point for your own search!

I will say that I endeavored to only include options that feature high-quality memory foam, which, in my opinion, is dense, thick, and usually modified with either a cooling infusion or open-cell structure. These modifications are important because they help to mitigate the overheating tendencies of traditional memory foam, which can cause some sleepers discomfort in the night.

But enough chat! Let’s get on with the picks.

The Mattresses

Best Mattress for Side Sleepers

Layla mattress with the soft side up

Layla Mattress

The Layla mattress is a flippable, all-foam bed designed to give folks more options for how they sleep. It’s landed on this list because the double-sided construction (either “Soft” or “Firm” depending on the configuration) allows the sleeper to really hone in on the firmness level that’s right for them.

Two options might seem like a lot, but getting to flip between different feels can be a boon for side sleepers unsure of how supportive or plush they’d like their mattress (though I should note that both sides do feature a healthy amount of memory foam). For reference, I gave the “Soft” side a 5.5/10 rating on the firmness scale while the “Firm” side received a score of 7.5/10.

To see if this mattress is right for you, check out my full review of the Layla.

Save $110 on your order!
Layla Mattress
Layla Mattress

A flippable design makes the Layla mattress a truly customizable bedroom accessory. Get $110 off your purchase using code SLEEPOPOLIS.

Best for Mattress Back Sleepers

The Bear Mattress

Bear Mattress

Memory foam is a great material for pressure relief, allowing sleepers to sink deep into bed. That’s often more of an advantage for the side sleepers out there than the back sleepers, but with the strong support of the Bear mattress I find that you get the best of both worlds. A bit of comfortable contouring from the memory foam and great alignment from the firm support.

The firm feel of the Bear helps keep your hips from sinking too far into the mattress, which means your back stays in alignment, helping you avoid aches and pains when you wake up. Generally I think firm mattresses are a huge advantage for the back and stomach sleepers out there and the Bear is no exception.

Check out my full Bear mattress review.

Save 20%
Bear Mattress
Bear Mattress

The cover of the Bear mattress uses celliant, which some studies suggest may help those with active lifestyles recover faster! Enjoy 20% off your order with the code SLEEPOPOLIS!

Best Mattress for the Money

Nectar Mattress

Built with a thick top section of memory foam, the Nectar mattress is a great value option for those in search of the material’s deep body-contouring and pressure relief. Side sleepers in particular could find a lot to love in this mattress as it actively works to alleviate tension at the shoulders, hips, and lower back.

However, it’s Nectar’s trial period and warranty that landed it a spot on this list. Not only can you try out the Nectar mattress for a full year (a rarity in the bed-in-a-box market), but you can also rest easy knowing it’s comfort is guaranteed for life. Now if that doesn’t spell best for the money, I’m not sure what does.

Read my full review of the Nectar mattress. You can also check out my Nectar vs. Purple and Nectar vs Tuft & Needle comparisons.

Save $100
Nectar Mattress
Nectar Mattress

Sleepers will sink deep into the Nectar mattress for some soothing pressure relief, something that side sleepers will particularly appreciate! Use this link to save $100 and get two premium pillows

Best for Combo Sleepers

Testing out the WinkBed MemoryLux

WinkBeds MemoryLux Mattress

Memory foam is a great material for pressure relief, helping you sink in and avoid the formation of “hot spots” in places like your shoulders or hips. But with its slow response to pressure that sinking in can often leave people feeling trapped deep in their mattress when they try to adjust their position during the night. The reason I chose the MemoryLux as the best memory foam choice for combo sleepers is that it provides comfort while on your side, but also allows people to change position without fighting the foam layers.

The MemoryLux is an all foam bed that has the benefits of memory foam, while doing a good job of providing the support you need when back sleeping. Between the surprising mobility and good support I think the WinkBed MemoryLux is a good choice for the combo sleeping memory foam lovers out there.

Learn more in my full WinkBeds MemoryLux review

Save $200!
WinkBeds MemoryLux Mattress
WinkBeds MemoryLux Mattress

The WinkBeds MemoryLux has thick layers of memory foam to provide great pressure relief and the classic contouring feel of sinking into bed. Enjoy $200 off your order with the code SLEEPOPOLIS200!

Best Mattress for Hot Sleepers

The Puffy Mattress in the Sleepopolis bedroom

Puffy Mattress

One of the peskiest problems with memory foam is its tendency to absorb and trap body heat, which can be a real bummer for sweaty sleepers. However, not all memory foam mattresses are created equal. Enter the Puffy mattress, a memory foam bed that’s not only soft as a cloud, but built for optimized cooling.

Puffy pulls off this rarified combo with a one-two punch of gel-infused memory foam over top a thick section of the brand’s special “Climate Comfort” foam. Together, the materials work to regulate temperatures through the night and keep things nice and cozy.

Wanna see more? Hop on over to my full Puffy mattress review.

Save $300!
Puffy Mattress
Puffy Mattress

As the name suggests, the Puffy mattress sleeps like a cloud! Get $300 off your purchase with code SLEEPOPOLIS300.

Best Luxury Mattress

Taking a look at the cover of the Tempur-Pedic LuxeAdapt

Tempur-Pedic LuxeAdapt

If you’re in the market for a luxury memory foam mattress, look no further than the Tempur-Pedic LuxeAdapt. This bad boy’s built with thick layers of plush memory foam, which allows for a ton of sinkage and deep body-contouring. The effect is one of a gentle hug, and could be great for those who like feeling a little “stuck” in their mattress.

Truly, this bed really embodies the vibe of memory foam itself, making it a nice fit for side sleepers or those in need of intense pressure relief. One slight caveat? This mattress definitely runs on the pricier side, ranging from $3500 – $7000.

For more, make sure to read my full Tempur-Pedic LuxeAdapt review.

Tempurpedic LuxeAdapt Mattress
Tempurpedic LuxeAdapt Mattress

Thick layers of memory foam softly cradle the shoulders and hips, offering great pressure relief for side sleepers!

Best Mattress for Couples

Loom & Leaf Mattress

And finally, I think the best memory foam mattress for couples has got to be the Loom & Leaf. Built with gel memory foam and poly foam, this bed has a pleasantly firm feel to it with very little bounce, so there shouldn’t be a lot of motion transferred across its surface.

This is great for those who sleep with a partner (or a furry best friend!) as it means you’ll be able to sleep soundly while your bedmate tosses and turns in the night. If that’s not enough to win you over, the bed is also eco-friendly and available in different firmnesses.

To get the full low down, check out my Loom & Leaf mattress review.

Save $75
Loom & Leaf Mattress
Loom & Leaf Mattress

Enjoy the cozy comfort of this ultra-plush mattress, and save $75 with the Sleepopolis discount!

Memory Foam Characteristics

Now that we’ve gone over all my favorite memory foam mattresses on the market, let’s take a second to recap the material’s most striking characteristics.

SO_ReviewsGraphics_MemoryFoam_Contouring

As you likely gathered from my descriptions above, body-contouring is a big selling point of the material. But what does this term actually mean? For me, it describes the sensation I experience as memory foam molds and conforms to the unique curves of my body. That contouring feel is not only comfortable, but also helps to alleviate tension at sensitive spots such as the shoulders, hips, and lower back.

SO_ReviewsGraphics_MemoryFoam_Sinkage

Another hallmark characteristic of memory foam is its deep sinkage, which allows sleepers to feel as though they’re being enveloped in a cushiony embrace. While sinkage amounts vary from bed to bed, a true memory foam mattress will typically feature its fare share of the stuff.

Though some may say this results in a “stuck-in-the-bed” feel that makes it difficult to move around, others will find the sinkage helps to soothe achy joint pain.

SO_ReviewsGraphics_MemoryFoam_Adaptability

And finally, memory foam is a highly adaptable material, often described as viscoelastic. Viscoelastic foams have a very unique and recognizable feel — the more pressure that’s applied to the foam, the deeper compression and hug you feel. This type of compression doesn’t happen in an instant, but over the course of several seconds (the duration depends on the specific foam). In this time, the mattress will respond to the weight of your body and adjust density accordingly.

FAQ

Q: What is memory foam used for? A: This cushiony material is used predominantly in mattresses, but can also be spotted in pillows, seat cushions, blankets, and even shoe insoles!

Memory Foam Complaints

But of course, no material is without its drawbacks, so let’s go ahead and explore a few of memory foam’s most notable pitfalls.

SO_ReviewsGraphics_MemoryFoam_Overheating

As we discussed, memory foam has a bit of a reputation for overheating at night, mostly because the material’s so dense that it has a tendency to trap any and all body heat. This can be highly uncomfortable for some sleepers, particularly those who already run hot.

Thankfully, many brands nowadays mitigate this annoying attribute by either infusing their memory foam layers with a cooling agent (usually gel, sometimes copper or graphite) or employing an open-cell design (which will go over a little bit later).

SO_ReviewsGraphics_MemoryFoam_SlowResponse

Though memory foam’s slow response to pressure can be a big plus for some sleepers, it can be a real drag for others, especially those who like to move around and change positions in the night. Any material that has a slow response to pressure is going to produce a quasi-stuck feeling, which limits a sleeper’s overall mobility.

You can avoid this problem by snagging a memory foam mattress that also utilizes latex, a much bouncier material known for lifting sleepers up and out of bed.

FAQ

Q: Are memory foam mattresses good for you? A: Memory foam mattresses can be great products for those in search of gentle pressure relief. However, they may not be the best fit for those who like to change positions in the night or prefer a firmer feel.

What Makes the Best Memory Foam?

Density

The density of a foam is a measure of its weight. Essentially, it’s how much actual foam material is built into the layer. It’s important to remember that foam thickness is not an indication of density. A 3-inch layer of memory foam can range widely in density.

As a general rule, the higher the density of a foam, the greater lifespan that foam is likely to have. However, the higher the density of a foam, the warmer it’s generally going to sleep. The sweet spot for memory foam density is in the 3.0-5.0 PCF (pounds per cubic foot) range, in my opinion. This provides enough longevity and durability without being so dense that you create serious heat-retention issues.

Thickness

The thickness of a memory foam layer (or any foam layer, for that matter) will play an important role in a bed’s overall comfort level.

Memory foam works best when there is at least 4 inches of comfort memory foams. Bear in mind that this can be split into multiple layers. Varying densities and firmnesses are often layered together to create the right comfort and support dynamic.

SO_GeneralMattressGraphics_Memory-Foam-copy

Having at least four inches ensures a smooth transitional support. Having a comfort layer that is less than four inches can increase the likelihood of encountering a “support wall” type of feel that’ll minimize the beneficial effects of memory foam, especially if combined with a poly foam, latex, or other non-memory foam.

Different Types of Memory Foam

Pros and cons aside, let’s wrap up this guide by briefly touching on the most popular types of memory foam. While this isn’t an exhaustive list of all the memory foam variations available online, it does highlight the ones you’re most likely to run into.

Traditional Memory Foam

When people think of “memory foam,” this is usually what they envision. A classic or more traditional type of memory foam is usually going to be less responsive (taking several seconds to adapt to your changes in movement), thereby offering a deeper and more pronounced hug and contour. This type is also notably denser than either of the other options listed in this section and is the main culprit for the “overheating” rep memory foam often gets.

Infused Memory Foam

Infused memory foams take the pressure-relieving goodness of traditional memory foam and amp it up with a little added cooling. Gel-infused is the most popular variant of this type, though more and more brands are experimenting with different elements, such as graphite and copper.

Typically, infused memory foam is going to be slightly less dense than traditional memory foam as the infusions work to open up the tight structure of the material.

Open-Cell Memory Foam

Open-cell memory foam has a similar feel to traditional memory foam, but has been manufactured with tiny air pockets for added breathability. This results in a material that has a faster response time and overall better air circulation, which helps with temperature regulation throughout the night.

Though not as popular as either of the aforementioned memory foams, open-cell designs are seen in a number of mattresses on the market.

FAQ

Q: How long does a memory foam mattress last? A: This question really comes down to the density of the material. Low-density memory foams will typically only last between 5-6 years, while high-density memory foams can last upwards of 10 years.

Conclusion

Well folks, that about does it for this guide! Hopefully you found the memory foam mattress of your dreams, but if you didn’t, feel free to shoot me a message on Facebook or Twitter and I’ll help you find the bed that’s going to be 100% right for you.

For more videos like this, make sure to check out (and subscribe to!) our YouTube channel, where we post all our latest content.

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Logan Block
Logan is the content director of Sleepopolis, which means he not only reviews new mattresses every week, but also curates all the comparisons, best of pages, and video guides on the site. He takes a straightforward, honest approach to his reviews and endeavors to give viewers an objective look at each new product he tries out. Logan has perfected his method by personally testing over 200 different mattresses, so he’s not only able to discern the overall vibe of a specific bed, but to contextualize its feel within the bed-in-a-box market as a whole. When he’s not hopping on a new bed or working with our editorial team to whip up an engaging sleep education guide, you can find him reading books on world history, walking his dog Pepper, or searching for the best cheeseburger in New York City.
Logan Block

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