If you wake up tired or with aches and pain, consider your mattress. We spend nearly a third of our lives asleep, and for some, a decent amount of that time is consumed with tossing and turning. When you're uncomfortable due to back pain or unpleasant temperatures that stem from your mattress, it can feel like no amount of counting sheep will help. That's when you know it's time to replace your mattress.
"There are a tremendous number of reasons why a person might not sleep well, including physical, environmental, and mental [reasons]," says Michael J. Breus, Ph.D., a clinical psychologist, diplomate of the American Board of Sleep Medicine, and fellow of the American Academy of Sleep Medicine. "If you have nothing wrong with you physically, then maybe you sleep poorly due to your environment."
Breus says a non-supportive sleep surface is one of the top factors that can affect your slumber, primarily because your spine needs to be aligned while you're in bed. "This alignment allows for the proper relaxation of muscles around the spine for recovery, and allows for proper nutrition to be delivered to this very important area," he says.
When shopping for a mattress, consider your personal preferences for comfort, support, temperature, adjustability, and pain relief. "The goal in selecting any mattress is to find what's good to relieve pressure points and support your head, neck, back, and spine comfortably," says Dr. Venkata Buddharaju, MD, a sleep specialist, board-certified sleep physician, and author of Better Sleep, Happier Life.
However, some mattresses just aren't cut out for certain sleeping positions. The good news: There's a mattress out there for each kind of sleeper.
If you like to sleep on your back, you're not alone. This position is the second most common way to sleep, according to a study published in the Nature and Science of Sleep Journal. Back sleeping naturally gives you the benefits of spinal alignment, because your head, neck, and spine are in the same position they would be while standing up. Look for a mattress with a medium-firm surface that contours to your body and gives your upper body the support it needs. As a bonus, you should wake up with less back and neck pain.
While sleeping on your side can improve joint and back pain (as well as alleviate snoring), it's important to choose a mattress that contours to your body, providing cushion to relieve pressure in the shoulders and hips. Buddharaju recommends side sleepers opt for a mattress with a medium-soft or medium surface, which has a bit more plushness for pressure points while hugging the body.
Although fewer prefer to doze off on their tummy, it's one of the hardest sleeping positions to shop for. That's because snoozing with your head turned to one side strains the neck and does not support spinal alignment, which experts say is extremely important for restorative sleep. Stomach sleepers may gravitate towards a medium-firm surface that creates enough support to lift the body and help it into a neutral spine position. A mattress that's too soft may cause sinking around your head, neck, and shoulders, throwing your alignment out of place.
With so many mattress options out there, it can be a bit overwhelming to figure out which one is truly best for you. Thankfully, there are plenty of comfortable mattresses available on Amazon. There you'll find some top picks from brands like Purple, Casper, Tuft & Needle, and Tempur-Pedic. Plus, you can take advantage of fast, free shipping for most of the mattresses on this list if you're an Amazon Prime member.
What works for someone else might not suit your needs, so it's important to test your mattress to make sure you'll get the best sleep possible. Many mattresses on our list offer a trial period in which you can return your item (usually for free) if you're not satisfied.
Ready to pick out the best mattress for you? Check out the top Amazon mattresses:
Memory foam mattresses are one of the most popular options on the market right now. These mattresses are made up of foam with various densities that provide support while also conforming to the weight of whatever is placed on them. Thus, you get that coveted cradled feeling from your shoulders to your toes.
Casper is a top mattress-in-a-box brand that ships your bed right to your home, and its original mattress is one to consider if you’re a back or side sleeper. Made with three foam density zones, the Casper Original mattress has firm memory foam strategically placed in the middle of the mattress to support your hips and lower back area, while softer foam can be found at either end, making it especially cushioned for your upper back and shoulders. It also has a breathable top layer that disperses hot air, which is especially important as foam mattresses are known for trapping heat.
Buy It: Casper Original Foam Mattress, $930 for a queen (originally $1,095)
If you’re looking for a mattress with a little bit of bounce, consider an innerspring mattress. Unlike those of the past, today's innerspring mattresses feature spring coils built into the mattress to support your back with a firm, flat surface. The soft pushback you’ll get from an innerspring mattress helps align your spine, which Breus says helps your muscles relax while snoozing.
While the typical innerspring mattress strictly has coiled materials inside, the Modway Jenna Innerspring Mattress uses individually wrapped spring coils to add layered cushioning with tons of firmness for stomach and back sleepers. On top is a comfortable pillow-top that relieves pressure. The pocket coils used in the Modway Jenna mattress also provide springiness without a ton of motion transfer, meaning you can move around and your partner will barely feel a thing.
Buy It: Modway Jenna Innerspring Mattress, $280 for a queen (originally $390)
Combine memory foam and the coiled support of an innerspring, and you get a hybrid mattress. These mattresses typically use foam to relieve pressure in the neck, shoulders, and upper back, as well as sturdy spring coils that move with your body’s weight to give you the benefits of both mattress types in one. With the firmer feel of an innerspring mattress and the soft cushion of memory foam, it’s no surprise that side sleepers gravitate to hybrid mattresses.
The Leesa mattress is designed with a breathable, perforated foam surface on top of contouring memory foam. The pocket springs found in the lowest layer are individually wrapped to give you responsive spring-back support as you move from one side to the other. The memory foam cushion hugs your shoulders and hips as you lie down, making it ideal for side sleepers. And because the coils aren’t connected, you won’t feel any motion transfer.
Buy It: Leesa Hybrid Mattress, $1,445 for a queen (originally $1,695)
Latex mattresses are ideal for relieving pressure in areas like shoulders and hips that tend to get strained during sleep. With durable latex, you’ll notice a bit of bounce as well as a contoured, mild “hugging” feeling that provides support throughout the bed.
Ideal for anyone who wakes up with an aching back, the Ghostbed mattress features a medium-firm surface due to responsive latex foam, gel memory foam, and a firm foam-core base. Great for spinal alignment, this mattress gives you comforting cushion with a sturdy feel, alleviating tension in typical pressure points all night. And since it’s made with latex foam, the Ghostbed mattress won’t sink nearly as much as an all-foam mattress. Its ability to bounce back makes it comfortable for different kinds of sleepers, including combination sleepers who go from side to stomach to back positions.
Buy It: Ghostbed Mattress, $750 for a queen (originally $795)
Love the feeling of memory foam, but tend to sleep hot? A gel-infused memory foam mattress can help. As the name suggests, these mattresses have gel incorporated into their layers to make them feel cool to the touch. When you combine gel and traditional memory foam, you get a contouring cushion that supports the curvature of the body without overheating.
The Nectar gel memory foam mattress features a cooling gel memory foam cover on top of layers of gel memory foam and traditional memory foam layers. The mattress delivers medium firmness and pressure relief for back and side sleepers.
There are many budget mattresses available online, but none compare to Tuft & Needle. Made with what the company calls "adaptive foam," this under-$600 mattress creates a soft-yet-supportive environment for your back, side, and stomach. It has two open-cell foam layers that are designed to comfort your body while relieving pressure. Its medium surface density makes it a supportive option for side and back sleepers. The Tuft & Needle mattress is also made with ingredients like graphite and ceramic gel to draw out moisture and pull heat away from your body. That’s important, because even if you feel supported, if you also feel hot you might still have trouble sleeping. Buddharaju notes that sleep is favorable with cooler temperatures.
Buy It: Tuft & Needle Foam Mattress, $536 for a queen (originally $595)
The Purple mattress stands out among the rest due to its hyper-elastic gel grid design. Placed below a soft knit cover, the Purple Grid curves under your body while still being responsive enough to produce a bit of spring. That means the pressure-relieving material will mold to the body and cushion your pressure points but still bounce back as you move throughout the night. This means sinking is no longer a problem. Breus says this interesting grid design makes the Purple mattress a breathable option because it has “excellent heat transference properties.”
Buy It: Purple Mattress, $1,049 for a queen
Finding the best mattress is based on your preferences. But if you’re unsure about which type is right for you— firmer vs. softer—it’s nice to have options, and that’s where the Layla memory foam mattress comes in. This mattress is designed with a soft surface that has cushioned comfort that side sleepers love. And when you flip it over, it has a firm side that appeals to back and stomach sleepers, allowing you to test out which firmness gives you the best night’s sleep. While it also has a memory foam feel, the Layla mattress is infused with antimicrobial copper gel to give it cooling properties.
Buy It: Layla Memory Foam Mattress, $899 for a queen
For those who tend to sleep hot, getting comfortable enough to get some shut-eye can be a struggle. But the solution might be in your mattress. Materials like traditional memory foam can trap heat, but the Classic Brands Cool Gel Chill memory foam mattress is designed to wick away heat for a good night's sleep.
Made with hot sleepers in mind, this mattress is crafted with cooling gel memory foam and self-ventilating foam to remove body heat and create a breathable sleeping surface. Not only does the gel memory foam regulate body temperature to prevent night sweats, but it also supports the upper body to alleviate pressure points on areas like the shoulder and hips. At 14 inches thick, this mattress has a softer, more plush surface that side sleepers might enjoy. However, you can still get its cooling benefits alongside a firmer feel with the mattress’s 6- to 12-inch options.
Buy It: Classic Brands Cool Gel Chill Memory Foam Mattress, $387 for a queen (originally $446)
For years, Tempur-Pedic has been making luxurious sleep items with memory foam that was first developed by NASA to relieve pressure. It’s no wonder that the company is now a household name known for impressive mattresses made with premium materials.
The Tempur-Pedic TEMPUR-Adapt medium hybrid mattress is a top pick that effortlessly fuses together individually wrapped spring coils with the brand’s signature memory foam support. It has a softer cushioned layer on top to hug your curves and give you a medium sleeping surface—one that appeals to various sleepers, depending on preferred softness.
Buy It: Tempur-Pedic TEMPUR-Adapt Medium Hybrid Mattress, $2,099 for a queen (originally $2,199)