Best Mattress for the Money in 2020
Are you a first-time mattress buyer? You probably went to google mattresses and got overwhelmed by the choices. Our last count: almost 150 models and 65 brands. We’d also be confused if we weren’t familiar with most of them. So for those who want to know where to start, we bring you the best mattress for the money review.
In this guide, you’ll find beds under 3 price categories ranging from below $500 to below $1,500. There are more expensive options out there. But since upward of $2,000 is a bit of an investment, we review these luxury mattresses individually. Now, for the price range mentioned, we try to answer one question: does the quality match the price?
Table of Contents
- Best Mattress for the Money
- Mattress Under $500
- Mattress Under $1,000
- Mattress Under $1,500
- Know Before You Buy
- The Verdict
Best Mattress for the Money
Mattress Under $500
Lucid is an online mattress brand that has been around since 2010. Focusing on creating different beds for different people, it has produced various models under its name. Most of its offerings retail at below $500 (even for a Cal King!). The Lucid 10-Inch Gel Memory Foam Mattress is its bestselling model so far, which costs $249.99 (Queen).
Is this gel memory foam bed worth the buy? For a start, it’s quite thick at 10 inches. The 2.5-inch, gel-infused memory foam serves as its top layer. Its contouring properties enable your spine to curve naturally. So your body is cradled at its pressure points and, in turn, your posture is corrected. A 7.5-inch-thick support foam base, which reinforces the top layer, makes up the rest.
Separating your body from the foam is the lightweight Tencel fabric cover. The materials in this mattress are certified by CertiPUR-US, which means you won’t have to worry about volatile organic compounds (VOCs) and other toxic chemicals. Just hit the sack and rest assured you’ll be supported, feel minimal motion transfer, and enjoy a medium plush firmness. We recommend it for back and stomach sleepers. Couples and heavier folks, too.
You can buy this Lucid mattress from either the company website or Amazon. It will be shipped in a box to your home for free. There is no mention of a sleep trial, but you’ll be entitled to a 10-year warranty. If you’re looking for a cheap starter mattress for your dorm or condo, this one can be a great choice.
- Dual layer mattress combines 2.5 inches gel infused, ventilated memory foam surface + 7.5 inches high density foam base for excellent support for a medium feel
- Gel infused memory foam regulates temperature while conforming to the body to ease pressure points
- Temperature regulating, moisture controlling Tencel blend fabric cover creates a comfortable air layer
Another online mattress brand that boasts an array of beds to choose from is Zinus. But since we’re cutting down your options, we say you check out the Zinus Green Tea Memory Foam Mattress. It’s an introductory model which costs $156 to $344. Why range? It’s because you don’t just get one thickness option per size. For a Queen, you get 4.
Here’s a table to help you digest that information fast and furious:
The upside of this mechanics is that thickness corresponds to firmness. That means you’re not stuck with one firmness option. is one of its 4 memory foam models. You can go softer or firmer based on your preference. Take note that Zinus uses its own scale, with 1 being firmest and 10 being softest. Here’s another table to help you find the right firmness:
|Thickness Variants||Firmness Level|
The unique features do not end there. This model is made up of memory foam that is infused with green tea and ActivCharcoal, a technology that uses pure charcoal particles. These components are odor-resistant. It is supported at the base by high-density foam, which limits motion transfer and increases durability. The foams have CertiPUR-US certification. Zinus beds come with a 100-night trial, so you can test yours out risk-free.
Shipping is free, and the product is backed by a 10-year warranty.
- Conforming Green Tea Memory Foam comfort and pressure relieving support for a better night’s sleep, foam is CertiPUR US Certified for durability, performance, and content
- 3 inches Memory Foam, 2 inches Comfort Foam, 7 inches high-density base support foam.
- A safe and trustworthy anti-oxidant, Zinus infuses its memory foam products with natural green tea extract to maintain product freshness
Mattress Under $1,000
The first brand we’re featuring for the under $1,000 category is Allswell, and it specializes in hybrid mattresses. You might be thinking that hybrids are supposed to be a bit pricier. But the company’s motto runs along this line: they want to charge less and serve more customers. And so you get the Allswell Luxe Hybrid. A Queen costs $645 if you pay in cold cash. Financing is available.
But we’re getting ahead of ourselves. Let’s first deconstruct this coil-foam combo. It’s tall at 12 inches. It has a polyfoam comfort layer (that’s your top layer) placed above a pocketed coil core. On top is quilted performance memory foam for that contouring comfort. But you may think it sleeps hot. Allswell thought ahead and wrapped its bed in a cooling quilted cover. Plus, encased coils enable air to circulate.
Are its foams CertiPUR-US certified? Yes. Also, this bed has the firmness that falls within the comfort zone (5.5-7). It lets you sink right into a luxury plush experience, without sacrificing support. The individually wrapped springs help to reduce motion transfer. We recommend this for stomach sleepers and heavier folks.
This bed comes in a box and delivered to your doorstep free of charge. You can enjoy a 100-night trial within which you can request a return. If you decide to keep it, you can avail of the 10-year limited warranty as a certified Allswell mattress owner.
Tuft & Needle, another emerging online mattress brand, seeks to change the way mattresses are marketed and sold. Being direct-to-consumer, it does manage to prioritize product development, customer experience, and support, and marketing. Without having to pay for the operation and maintenance of a physical store, it also passes on the savings to us. And it’s reflected in the $595 price tag of the T&N Original Mattress.
But what does a T&N have that others don’t? The answer to that is the company’s proprietary Adaptive Foam. As its name suggests, this foam adapts to the pressure your body puts on the bed. In other words, it gives more support to the heavier parts, such as your shoulders and hips. This way, you are getting relief at your pressure points and gentle cushioning at the rest.
Further, the properties of the comfort layer are enhanced by the support layer. And a breathable cover with heat-wicking graphite wraps it all up. Everything works together to provide you with a long-lasting comfortable sleep. This bed used to be firmer, but now it offers universal comfort. People of all shapes and sizes would love this one. Couples would also be thrilled to hear that it has a nice bounce.
What about the chemicals used in this product, then? We’re pleased to report that the company has obtained certification from the prestigious CertiPUR-US. However, you may experience some off-gassing when decompressing the mattress. This is quite a challenge for bed-in-a-box models. Still, it also comes with incentives like free shipping and returns, 100-night trial, financing, and a 10-year limited warranty.
- QUEEN MATTRESS: Award winning mattress constructed with T&N Adaptive Foam provides a bouncy yet supportive feel perfect for side, back and stomach sleepers, and offers great pressure relief and "localized bounce" so you won't disturb your sleeping partner; selected “Number 1 MATTRESS BRAND” in 2015 and rated “BEST BUY” in 2016
- STANDARD PILLOW: Unlike others who use shredded, recycled foam, the T&N Pillow is constructed with durable Adaptive Foam and is made to SLEEP COOL with infused graphite & cooling gel
- ADAPTIVE FOAM: An advanced high grade foam that sleeps cool, is just the right mix of “not too soft, and not too hard”, and offers everything you need for a good nights sleep; others use latex and memory foam, outdated materials that cause you to “sink in and feel stuck” and “sleep hot"
Leesa is a pretty young company. Having started only this decade, it has made a name not only by offering a premium-quality mattress but also by being socially conscious. It has contributed to more than 1,000 nonprofits and continues to do so. The Leesa Mattress, of course, is another gem to consider at $995 (Queen). Let’s get to know this all-around performer.
Sporting multiple foam layers, this model has several benefits tucked under its belt. The 2-inch premium top layer hugs your body nicely and even bounces gently. It also regulates temperature well. Further contouring is done by the 2-inch memory foam that’s found in the middle. Expect it to target pressure points for comfort and relief. Capping it all off is the 9-inch high-density support foam, which reinforces the properties mentioned.
Traditional foams tend to trap heat. But this is an issue that Leesa manages to address through this model. It hugs your body without turning into a heat trap. Side sleepers, rejoice! It’s also great at supporting your shoulders. Back pain sufferers, this bed will help you say goodbye to your physical problems. Motion isolation? Check! Snooze in a medium-firm mattress without interruptions and wake up feeling refreshed.
Lastly, Leesa is generous with perks. Home delivery and setup can be requested to accompany free shipping. You get a 100-night risk-free trial, so you can take your time adjusting to the bed (hopefully it’s fast).
- Our mattress: Great things come in small packages. The Leesa mattress in a box is beautifully designed with three premium foam layers for cooling, body contouring and pressure-relieving core support. With the all-new Top layer of high Quality foam, you’ll experience enhanced pressure relief and better rest. The Leesa mattress offers a universal adaptive feel, which adapts to your body type while you sleep, regardless of your sleeping style.
- Cooling comfort: Our exclusive high quality foam’s microcell structure promotes airflow while still providing the perfect amount of hug and bounce. So, you sleep cooler and get the comfort and support you need.
- Made in USA: The Leesa mattress is designed, assembled and manufactured in the USA with high-performance foams.
Purple is an online mattress brand built by 2 engineers who are also brothers. The founders started with cushioning products and then moved on to mattresses. The result? The Original Purple Mattress. Expect the bed to be soft–thanks to the stretchable material that’s used to make it. A well-engineered model that costs $999 (Queen)? No wonder it’s one of the most popular designs on the internet.
But why do people love it? The credit goes to Smart Comfort Grid. Basically, it’s a layer that features an open grid design. It’s 2 inches thick and acts as the top layer. It somehow resembles an egg tray, but replace the egg-shaped holes with grids. Now, this tech is said to conform to your body’s curves by adapting to the amount of pressure applied to it.
This means contouring your spine, hips, and shoulders. The desired effect is the elimination of pressure points. And it spoons you nicely no matter what position you’re in. Sleepers of all types can definitely consider making this bed their first-ever bedroom asset. In addition, Smart Comfort Grid reduces motion transfer and promotes airflow. Sharing your bed with someone–a partner, a kid, a pet–becomes no big deal.
Lastly, Purple wants to deliver “fiscal” comfort to its customers. So your ownership opens you to a 10-year warranty. That’s on top of the free shipping and 100-night trial perks. Those eligible can also get financing. And the cost of valid returns is shouldered by the company.
- ULTIMATE QUEEN BED - Our queen mattress distributes equalized pressure and supports proper spine alignment. Together, these give you the ultimate sleeping experience for better recovery and relaxation.
- MOTION ISOLATION - Purple Innovations designed this queen sized mattress using sleep science and leading technology to create a special motion isolation so you don’t feel movement from others sleeping near you.
- FREE-FLOW AIR CHANNELS - The Free Air Flow technology with breathable channels neutralizes temperatures and won’t trap heat like memory foam or latex. Our mattress neutralizes temperatures to keep your body perfectly comfortable.
Mattress Under $1,500
You probably have heard about Casper. For those who haven’t, it’s a popular bed-in-a-box company that provides mid-range sleep products. Its Casper Hybrid is an upgrade of the original all-foam version, the Casper Mattress. With this one, you have the power combo of spring and foam for enhanced support. And it retails at $1,195. That’s just $200 higher than the Original’s price.
What’s in a Casper Hybrid? First, the high-density polyfoam found in the original is replaced by a pocketed coil system beneath a high-density polyfoam. So the base has enhanced support and durability. The springs also give the bed that additional lift only springs can give. Further, the end-to-end spring design offers edge support. This makes it easy to get in and out of bed.
Just like the original all-foam model, this hybrid scores 6 on the firmness scale. While firmness is subject to individual preferences, this score is generally described to achieve universal comfort. In short, it is neither too firm nor too soft. However, some may feel it’s too firm, especially if they are not used to the active support that comes from springs.
Thwarting motion transfer is another typical characteristic of springs. It’s a must-have feature for people sharing their bed with siblings, a partner, or even pets. Meanwhile, the pocketed coils are designed as such to increase breathability. This mattress lets you sink without feeling like you’re drowning. But it’s not as bouncy as other hybrids or innerspring are.
- Casper’s award-winning bed-in-a-box mattress upgraded, now with springs for added support
- 4 layers of premium foam construction with Zoned Support treats your shoulders and hips differently for better spine alignment
- Breathable open-cell foams have tiny pores to let hot air escape, keeping you cool at night
Loom & Leaf is the memory mattress brand of Saatva. It’s the company’s answer to the higher-end brands like Tempur-Pedic. Its Tempur-Cloud Luxe Breeze retails at $4,799. A luxury mattress from a traditional company will set you back around $3,000 to $5,000. The Loom & Leaf Mattress will cost you $1,499 (Queen). In addition, it’s eco-friendly and cooling.
This memory foam mattress is as green as green can get. It uses natural and organic materials, as well as observe sustainable practices during production. This means less carbon footprint for the company, the product, and the customer. That makes you a conscious consumer. Your overall health is also protected because it doesn’t release harmful chemicals in your sleep environment.
But do its layers have what it takes to compete with more luxurious mattresses? Let’s see. It sports the proprietary Spinal Zone Gel for its top layer. It cools you while also effectively supporting your lumbar area. Then, a 5-pound eco-friendly premium memory foam is placed underneath. It does not release stinky smells and does not sleep hot. Of course, memory foam also takes care of contouring and pressure relief.
The base is also breathable and reinforces support. A quilted cover is added to achieve maximum plush. Take note: all of these layers are put together by hand. This is what makes this model special. You can also choose between (5.5) and Firm (8) to satisfy your needs and preferences. We recommend this bed to side and back sleepers of all sizes. The conforming feature is also ideal for those who suffer from back pain.
To cap off the luxurious experience, Loom & Leaf offers a free white-glove delivery and a 120-day home trial. The mattress is backed by a 15-year warranty. Valid return requests will be fulfilled by the company, with free pickup and followed by a full refund of your money. Can it get better than that?
Know Before You Buy
Things to Consider Before Buying A Mattress
Mattress Under $500
Your choices within this category are limited. Most of them will be sold online. Our high-quality recommendations are actually from online mattress brands.
Mattress Under $1000
You increase your chances of finding a good quality bed within the $501 to $999 range. Take your pick from the following: innerspring, memory foam, latex, and hybrid. Our review includes outstanding models from online brands.
Mattress Under $1,500
You’re getting closer to high-end products at this price point. But it is still considered mid-range or affordable luxury. Here, you get to focus on the finer details such as premium and natural materials, including high-density foams and thicker innerspring systems.
Innerspring – This mattress type features a steel coil base, which is usually defined using gauge or thickness. Remember that the lower the gauge, the thicker and firmer the coils. So a 12-gauge spring system is firmer than an 18-gauge one. Also, check the type of coil used. Cheaper ones use Bonnell coils. Your best bet is pocketed coils, followed by offset coils.
Price range: $800 to $1200 (Queen)
Memory Foam – When you say memory foam, it’s actually a combination of memory foam and high-density polyfoam. These foams form your comfort and support layers, respectively. Memory foam has been a favored material among manufacturers because it adapts to heat and pressure, allowing the bed to contour your body. Take note of foam density when buying this type. The higher the density, the more expensive the mattress.
Price range: $900 to $1,500 (Queen)
Latex – This foam is also used for its contouring properties. However, it is more responsive and commands a higher price than memory foam. You’ll encounter two types: Dunlop (lower cost) and Talalay (higher cost). You may also have to choose between natural latex and blended and synthetic latex. As is the case, natural means more expensive.
Price range: $1,500 to $2,000 (Queen)
Hybrid – Combining innerspring and memory foam (or latex foam), the hybrid mattress offers both support and pressure relief. At least one foam layer that’s more than 2 inches thick is placed above a coil system. The thicker the foam layers, the higher the price of the bed. Generally, hybrids using latex as a comfort layer are more expensive than those using memory foam.
Price range: $1,600 to $2,000 (Queen)
You’ve come across the factors we considered in our recommendation of the best mattresses for the money. On top of pricing, of course, you have construction and materials, firmness and feel, cooling, edge support and sinkage, motion transfer, and bounce. One mattress cannot have it all. But if you are able to find several factors in one model, we suggest you go for it.
Further, you need to cross-check the mattress qualities with your personal needs and preferences. Read on to know more.
Your Needs & Preferences
While a mattress looks good on paper, it may not actually be the right fit for your sleeping position. For side sleepers, you would want a bed that supports your shoulders and hips. Back sleepers need a model that naturally aligns their spine. Stomach sleepers should avoid ultra-soft surfaces.
Your weight also affects your sleep experience on a particular mattress. Heavier frames should look for thicker profiles and harder feels. Those on the lighter side should consider softer and less dense beds. People of average weight have more flexibility, but they should take note whether they’re leaning toward the heavy or light frame.
Risks & Safety
Your safety should come first no matter how much money you have set aside for a mattress. Having the seal of approval of third-party certifying bodies helps brands to identify their products as safe and healthy for customers. So, go ahead and look for labels like CertiPUR-US, OEKO-TEX, GOTS (Global Organic Textile Standard), and GOLS (Global Organic Latex Standard), among others.
Also, keep in mind that cheaper mattresses may compromise on some aspects of quality. In the long run, you will end up spending more if you settle for less.
And don’t forget to protect yourself by reading the fine print. For a start, know the company’s return policy and warranty policy.
We hope you’re enjoying the research stage so far. Don’t worry about over-researching. It’s better than ending up underwhelmed by your newly arrived mattress.
If you have questions, feel free to post them in the comments section. We’d love to hear from you. If you find this guide helpful, don’t forget to share it with friends and family. And let us know if there are other sleep products you want us to review. Return to phatfusion.com for more comprehensive guides and individual mattress ratings and reviews.