If you’re tired of waking up in your bed frame feeling unrefreshed and frustrated by how expensive mattresses have become, it’s time you looked into getting a great cheap mattress. While there are plenty of ways to potentially save a few bucks on furniture, a cheap mattress can save you thousands. And a lower price tag doesn’t have to be a sacrifice in quality, as Dr. Henrique Ribeiro, a New Jersey-based chiropractor tells us: “I personally believe it is important to have a good mattress, not an expensive one.”
After speaking with Dr. Ribeiro to better understand the benefits of different kinds of cheap mattresses and who could use them, we researched dozens of mattresses and read countless customer reviews to find the best ones for a wide range of needs.
Linenspa 8-Inch Memory Foam Hybrid Mattress
Three thickness options
CertiPUR-US Certified foams
10-year limited warranty
Wide range of size options
Takes 24 to 48 hours to fully expand
Doesn’t eliminate motion transfer
Don’t let the thinner nature of Linenspa’s Memory Foam Hybrid Mattress fool you; this mattress packs a lot of support into its 8-inch thickness! The medium-firm feel makes it a good option for both back and side sleepers, while the CertiPUR-US certified memory foam provides pressure-relief to every type of sleeper.
The memory foam is quilted into the cover, and beneath that another foam layer offers body-hugging comfort. Meanwhile, the steel springs offer support and just the right amount of bounce. While other hybrids with the same benefits can cost well over $1,000, this one comes in at under $300, which is another reason it tops our list. Additionally, if you’re looking for something more plush, the same mattress is available in both 10-inch and 12-inch thicknesses to offer more cushioning support, albeit at an extra cost.
While some customers find this mattress to leave a bit to be desired in terms of edge support, there is also no shortage of purchasers that praise it for the overall quality relative to its lower price tag, with many of them referring to the overall value as exceptional. With over 130,000 customer reviews, this mattress still boasts a 4.5 out of 5 stars rating.
Price at time of publish: $250 for a Queen
Material Type: Memory foam, steel springs | Firmness: Medium, medium-firm, plush | Sizes: Twin, twin XL, full, full XL, queen, short queen, king, California king
Zinus Memory Foam 12-Inch Green Tea Mattress
Four thickness options
CertiPUR-US Certified foam
Mild sagging over time
No handles for moving
Available in thicknesses of six, eight, 10, and 12 inches, the Green Tea Mattress from Zinus is designed to fit your specific needs. A base layer is particularly dense to provide pressure relief throughout the mattress as well as stable edge support. Above that, a layer of comfort foam offers a cloud-like feel, but without making sleepers sink in too deeply. Finally, the eponymous green tea layer that tops this mattress is no gimmick- the foam is infused with green tea and purified charcoal to keep the mattress fresh while also keeping your joints from experiencing stress. Aside from the green tea infusion, this mattress is a real “what you see is what you get” pick; it’s a simple design that offers tremendous support.
One potential shortcoming with this mattress is that some customers noticed mild sagging over time. But, with Zinus’ 10-year limited manufacturer’s warranty, the company is in the business of helping to keep your mind at ease.
Price at time of publish: $429 for a Queen
Material Type: Memory foam | Firmness: Medium-firm | Sizes: Twin, twin XL, full, queen, short queen, king, California king
Best Pillow Top
Signature Design by Ashley 12-inch Chime Mattress
Adjustable base compatible
Supportive blend of foams
Too soft for some
No handles for moving
For a pillow top mattress that doesn’t break the bank, look no further than Ashley’s Chime 12-inch Plush Hybrid Queen Mattress. While there are 360-individually wrapped 13-gauge pocket coils inside of this mattress offering lumbar support and breathability, it’s the plush feel of the pillow top that really draws us in. A 1.5 inch HD super soft quilt foam elevates the plushness of this mattress way beyond other hybrids on the market, but make no mistake, it still offers tremendous lumbar support. Gel memory foam and support foam also work in tandem to ensure a night of sleep that is not only comfortable, but well supported all around.
One drawback with this mattress is that despite the support it offers, the pillowtop may make it a bit too soft for some. However, that hasn’t prevented it from receiving a 4.5 out of 5 stars rating on Amazon.
Price at time of publish: $330 for a Queen
Material Type: Gel memory foam, coils | Firmness: Plush | Sizes: Twin, full, queen, king, California king
Best Mattress in a Box
Allswell 10-Inch Hybrid Mattress
Exceptional customer service
Good motion transfer elimination and edge support
No off-gassing smell
Can take a few days to decompress
Too firm for some
One of the great convenience innovations of the past 20 years is the mattress in a box method of shipping. And when it comes to the mattress in a box, Allswell has it figured out with The Allswell Mattress. While other mattresses in a box can be cumbersome and difficult to carry, Allswell took care of that issue, creating a convenient shipping box with wheels and handles. Now that’s smart engineering!
In terms of the mattress itself, The Allswell features a top layer of charcoal and copper-infused memory foam for maximum heat absorption and transfer. Additionally, individually wrapped coils, which are rare in boxed mattresses, help to avoid motion transfer while also aiding in keeping your edges supported for the long-run.
One potential drawback with this mattress for some is there’s only one firmness option, and some customers feel it’s a bit too firm for their needs. However, there’s no shortage of customers who feel it offers just the right amount of firmness while still allowing you to be comfortable.
Price at time of publish: $449 for a Queen
Material Type: Memory foam, coils | Firmness: Medium-firm | Sizes: Twin, twin XL, full, queen, king, California king
Best for Back Sleepers
Serta Perfect Sleeper Elkins II 10 Inch Firm Mattress
Good for back pain
10-year limited warranty
Heat-dissipating gel foam
Too firm for some
No handles for moving
With a contouring coil system designed to offer pressure point relief and back support, the Serta Perfect Elkins II is an ideal option for back sleepers who aren’t looking to break the bank. In addition to the back support this mattress provides, the individually wrapped coils help to avoid motion transfer. Surrounding that, a foam rail offers protection against edge roll off. And while it may have a lower price tag, this mattress doesn’t skimp on its eco concerns; it uses recycled and biodegradable products.
Some customers felt the Serta Perfect Elkins II was a bit too firm for their needs, with one reviewer saying that they opted for a mattress pad to create a more plush feel. However, that same firmness is not only advertised, but also what many other customers choose it for.
Price at time of publish: $920 for a Queen
Material Type: Memory foam, coils | Firmness: Firm | Sizes: Twin, twin XL, full, queen, king, California king
Best Memory Foam
Siena Queen Mattress Memory Foam 10 Inch
Convenient box delivery
Responsive, adaptive memory foam
Some may not find it supportive enough
While Siena’s Memory Foam Mattress comes in at just under $400, it offers just as much quality memory foam as mattresses that are more than triple that price. A layer of responsive memory foam that is highly adaptable makes this mattress great for all different sizes and shapes, while still offering supreme cushioning. Beneath that, two inches of polyfoam provides support and features a ripple for breathability. Finally, a bedrock layer of five and a half inches of foundational foam makes sure that all of the layers above it can work their magic.
For some heavier sleepers, a complaint has been that the mattress tends to leave an imprint over time. The good news is Siena offers a 180-night trial, which provides ample time to see if you experience this issue or anything else that makes this mattress not right for you.
Price at time of publish: $700 for a Queen
Material Type: Memory Foam | Firmness: Medium firm | Sizes: Twin, twin XL, full, queen, king, California king
Best for Stomach Sleepers
Sealy Response Essentials 8.5-inch Firm Tight Top Mattress
Wide range of sizes
Helps promote spinal alignment
Good for back sleepers
Too firm for some
Takes time to break in
As Dr. Ribeiro tells us, stomach sleepers should seek firm mattresses “to prevent sagging of the lower back and kinking of the neck.” The Sudley Firm Mattress from Sealy Essentials is very firm and features 525-coils to provide a “sleep-on-top-of-the-bed” feel and to aid in keeping the mattress cool by promoting airflow. At the same time, a pressure-relieving gel foam will provide some cushioning to the firmness, with one 5-star reviewer saying, “This mattress is firm yet plush. It provides support and comfort.”
One drawback with this mattress is it can take some time to break in and get adjusted to. However, the overall support and ability to help keep the spine aligned makes this option a winner in our book, and a 120-night trial lets you figure out for yourself is this the right choice for you.
Price at time of publish: $700 for a Queen
Material Type: Coils, gel foam | Firmness: Firm | Sizes: Twin, twin XL, full, queen, king, California king
Best for Side Sleepers
LUCID 10 Inch Queen Hybrid Mattress
Works with all styles of bed frame/foundation
Features Tencel for moisture control
Good edge support
No trial period listed on site
Cover is not removable
Lucid’s 12-inch Bamboo Charcoal and Aloe Vera Hybrid Mattress is a dream for side sleepers. The combination of a medium firmness and the foam/innerspring build combine for excellent support while aiding in alignment. The steel coils are individually encased and high-gauge, providing immense pressure relief for a wide range of body types. Above and below the coils are two-layers of base foam which offers not only durability, but exceptional support. Plus, this mattress is designed to handle any amount of weight, and it’s also versatile in its ability to work with metal grids, platforms, slats, box springs, or adjustable bases.
While the cover features Tencel, which is great for moisture control, it’s unfortunately not removable. However, Lucid has accounted for that with bamboo charcoal infused into the memory foam for odor-reducing and moisture-wicking abilities.
Price at time of publish: $500 for a Queen
Material Type: Innerspring, memory foam | Firmness: Medium | Sizes: Twin, twin XL full, full XL, queen, king, California king
Dreamfoam Essential 6 Inch
Can help with back pain
Multiple thickness choices
Suitable for RVs and traditional beds
Too firm for some
Thinner than other options
Buying a great quality mattress that keeps you cool shouldn’t completely empty your bank account. The Dreamfoam Essential’s 6-inch option features a two-inch top layer of gel swirl memory foam that aids in cooling. The foam has an open cell structure, designed intentionally to promote airflow and breathability, allowing your excess heat to be able to escape. This mattress is also available in eight, 10, 12, and 14-inch thickness options, for more money. The six-inch option is firmer than the rest, with a four-inch high density layer underneath the gel swirl memory foam that provides firmness and durability.
One drawback with this mattress is that it’s a bit thinner than other options, and it may be a bit firm initially for some sleepers. However, customers really seem to be drawn to the cooling and the company with users quite satisfied with the fit, finish, comfort, cooling, shipping, and packaging.
Price at time of publish: $524 for a Queen
Material Type: Memory foam | Firmness: Firm | Sizes: Twin, twin XL, full, short full, full XL, queen, short queen, Olympic queen, king, short king, RV king, California king, split California king, RV bunk
Wayfair Sleep 8" Plush Pillow Top Innerspring Mattress
May help with pain relief
Arrives in a box
Compatible with adjustable base
Shorter 100-night trial than other brands
Limited sizing options
While many other brands don’t offer an innerspring mattress that comes in a box, this Wayfair Sleep 8” Medium Plus Hybrid mattress does just that. Steel pocket springs offer comfort by reducing spinal and joint pressure, while also helping to eliminate motion transfer so couples can sleep easier. Above that, foam provides excellent added comfort so you can fully benefit from the pressure relief beneath. To top it all off, a stylish two-tone knitted breathable cover keeps you cool, and makes this mattress look far more expensive than just a few hundred bucks. With how affordable this mattress is, you may even want to consider upgrading to a bigger size!
We particularly appreciate the springs, which provide extra comfort, which are particularly helpful for those who may wake up with aches and pains. One drawback with this mattress, however, is it has a bit of a shorter trial-period than other mattresses on our list, offering only a 100-night trial.
Price at time of publish: $340 for a Queen
Material Type: Innerspring, memory foam | Firmness: Plush | Sizes: Twin, full, queen
Best Pressure Relief
IKEA MORGEDAL Foam Mattress Firm Dark Gray
Made with renewable and recycled materials
Foam conforms to your body
Can sag over time
Too thin for some
If you are looking for a mattress that can provide pressure relief, it’s going to be hard to beat memory foam. IKEA’s MORGEDAL features a foam that’s not only super comfortable, but also renewable and recycled. It features specific comfort zones designed to alleviate pressure by adding support and it also arrives roll-packed to eliminate waste and make it easier to transport. An additional convenience feature that the Scandinavian company offers is a removable cover that is also machine washable. And at just $300, it allows you to put your saved money towards other ways of optimizing your space.
While some customers noticed a bit of sagging over time, this mattress has no shortage of customers praising it for overall quality and standout value for the price.
Price at time of publish: $299
Material Type: Foam | Firmness: Firm | Sizes: Twin, full, queen, king
Our pick for the best overall cheap mattress is the Linenspa Memory Foam Hybrid Mattress. Made with CertPUR-US Certified foams and available in three different thickness options, it provides a guaranteed bang for your buck. Plus, a 10-year warranty demonstrates the company’s overall attention to quality and care. If you’re in the market for something more cooling, we highly recommend the Dreamfoam Essential 6 Inch Mattress for its open cell structure to promote breathability, as well as its hypoallergenic materials.
What to Look for in Cheap Mattresses
When it comes to mattress material, your own individual needs are going to play a huge role. Beyond that, personal preference is also going to be important. For example, if all-natural is what you seek, a latex mattress may be your best bet. Additionally, if you want something that’s very breathable, innerspring mattresses promote airflow through their coils to keep you cool all night. And if you’re someone dealing with pain, you could benefit from sleeping on memory foam for its pressure-relieving properties. For this, we highly recommend the Zinus Green Tea Memory Foam Mattress for its excellent pressure-relief and joint cushioning.
Height and Thickness
According to Dr. Ribeiro, when it comes to mattresses, “Thickness does not matter, firmness will matter more.” It’s also important to realize that height and thickness is really just the byproduct of what is inside the mattress, so if you are someone who needs more foam for extra contourning support, you may end up with a thicker mattress.
Dr. Ribeiro tells us that “Pillowtop mattresses give [the mattress] more height” but “can sometimes sink you into the bed making it hard to rollover during the night.” If you’re in the market for something with more cushioning, we recommend the Lucid 12-Inch Bamboo Charcoal and Aloe Vera Hybrid Mattress. The extra thickness is achieved through its 6.3-inch high-gauge steel coils as well as its motion isolating base and two inches of memory foam for comfort.
The ideal firmness for sleepers will come down to a number of factors, the most important being your style of sleeping (back, stomach, or side). One general rule is that people who weigh more will benefit from a firmer mattress. In terms of sleep style, Dr. Ribeiro tells us, “Back sleepers will do better using a firm mattress.” He also recommends a firm option for stomach sleepers to aid in alignment. And when it comes to side sleepers, he explains that, “Some side sleepers may have shoulder pain or hip pain from laying on their side so a soft mattress may work best in that scenario.” For side sleepers, we recommend the Linenspa Memory Foam Hybrid Mattress for its different thickness and plushness options.
Most modern-day mattress companies will offer a trial period that will range (generally) from 90 to 365-days. It is a good opportunity to see if the mattress is a proper fit for your needs, and additionally, it is more than enough time to allow the mattress to break-in. Some mattresses can take a handful of weeks before they are fully broken in, so the trial period is a chance to allow that to happen. With almost all brands on the market offering a trial period, it is wise to be wary of any company that doesn’t provide one. It can also be a testament to the kind of company you’re buying from if they are willing to offer a lengthier trial.
Because mattresses are an investment, oftentimes costing hundreds (if not thousands) of dollars, mattress companies will include warranties with their mattresses. Dr. Ribeiro refers to warranties as “good reassurance when buying.” The length of the warranty will vary from brand to brand, with some companies offering shorter warranties that are 10 years or less, while other brands offer warranties that are lengthier, from 25 years to lifetime. Something that’s worth considering, though, is if your mattress isn’t latex, a 10-year warranty is essentially a lifetime warranty. Also, be sure to read the fine print to know what is and isn’t protected with the warranty.
Mattress delivery is easier than ever. No longer do you have to go to a store to pick one up; most brands have found ways to be supremely accommodating. With the advent of the bed in a box delivery method, you can simply order online and have it conveniently brought to your door. Other brands offer a white-glove service, albeit sometimes at additional costs, that will not only deliver your mattress, but place it in the room where you intend to use it.
Are budget mattresses worth it?
Yes! While expensive mattresses have their place, there is also no shortage of more affordable mattresses that are high-quality and durable on the market today. “A mattress is one of the tools we use to make sure we are ready to go each day,” Dr. Ribeiro tells us, so finding one that works for you both in terms of comfortability and price tag is vital- you don’t want to spend your nights lying awake thinking of how you have no money left after buying an expensive one! Plus when you save the money, you can also treat yourself and your bedroom to a great comforter, or a new rug!
How long should a mattress last?
The length of time that a mattress will last is going to come down to a handful of features, namely, the material it is made of, and how you take care of it. Additional features like the amount of stress and how much usage it receives will also play a role. Memory foam mattresses will generally last you anywhere from 8-10-years. Hybrid mattresses can generally fall into that same range. Dr. Ribeiro tells us that “Latex mattresses are usually more expensive but will last longer,” sometimes going as long as 20-years.
Are the mattresses that come in a box any good?
Yes, they are. Aside from the convenience of getting a box delivered to your house, Dr. Ribeiro tells us that “The ability to see different ‘features’ online and not be overwhelmed” is much easier when compared to going into a store and hearing a sales pitch. But there are also things to be conscious of. As Dr. Ribeiro notes, “A trusted seller is important.” The good news is bed-in-a-box companies have been doing it for close to a decade now, so we can see it’s a legitimate and safe way to deliver mattresses. As always, be sure to do your research and read customer reviews to make sure it’s right for you.
Why Trust The Spruce?
Jack Byram is a freelance writer who specializes in all things sleep related. He’s written countless articles and interviewed dozens of chiropractors and sleep professionals to glean insight about getting a better night of sleep. For this article he researched numerous affordable mattresses and scoured customer reviews to find great choices on the market. He also spoke with Dr. Henrique Ribeiro to gain further professional insight and recommendations when looking for a mattress.