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Best Cheap Mattresses for a Budget, Expert Tested (2024)

Mattresses are notoriously expensive purchases. Thankfully, there are savings to be had by shopping online and having a bed delivered to your door. This bed-in-a-box concept grants you easy access to the best affordable mattresses available, along with generous trial periods to ensure that you’re satisfied.

I’ve tested and reviewed a lot of beds, and I know that a budget-friendly price can be a big selling point. On this list, I’ve picked out my favorite cheaper mattresses that should help you rest easy and avoid sticker shock.

Our Top Pick for the Best Affordable Mattress

The Nectar earned our Editor’s Pick due to its high-quality and multi-layered foam which provides support and comfort at a competitive price point.

Best Cheap Mattresses

Our Top Cheap Mattresses, Reviewed

Compare the Best Cheap Beds

Nectar Mattress Emma Hybrid Comfort DreamCloud Original Mattress Puffy Cloud Mattress Brooklyn Bedding Essential Bear Mattress Cocoon Chill Mattress Siena Mattress Dreamfoam Essential Memory Foam Mattress
Nectar Mattress Emma Hybrid Comfort DreamCloud Original Mattress Puffy Cloud Mattress Brooklyn Bedding Essential Bear Mattress Cocoon Chill Mattress Siena Mattress Dreamfoam Essential Memory Foam Mattress
Rating
4.7/5
4.6/5
4.6/5
5.0/5
3.7/5
4.7/5
4.6/5
4.5/5
4.7/5
Firmness Medium-firm: 6.5/10 Firm: 7/10 Medium-firm: 6.5/10 Medium-firm: 6.5/10 Medium-firm: 6.5/10 Medium-firm: 6/10 Firm: 7/10 Firm: 7.5/10
Material Foam Hybrid Hybrid Foam Hybrid Foam Foam Foam Foam
Cooling
Warranty Lifetime warranty 10-year warranty Lifetime warranty Lifetime warranty 10-year warranty Lifetime warranty 10-year warranty 10-year warranty 10-year warranty
Shipping Free shipping Free shipping Free shipping Free shipping Free shipping Free shipping Free shipping Free shipping Free shipping
Trial Period 365 nights 365 nights 365 nights 101 nights 120 nights 120 nights 100 nights 180 Nights 120 nights
Best For Back Sleepers, Side Sleepers, Hip Pain, Joint Pain Back Sleepers, Stomach Sleepers, Hot Sleepers Back Sleepers, Hot Sleepers, Seniors Side Sleepers, Back Sleepers, Back Pain, Kids Back Sleepers, Side Sleepers, Hot Sleepers Hot Sleepers, Back Sleepers, Side Sleepers Back Sleepers, Hot Sleepers, Side Sleepers Side Sleepers, Back Sleepers, Kids Side Sleepers, Back Sleepers

Sleep Advisor’s Testing Methodology

At Sleep Advisor, our mattress reviews are based on findings from in-person tests that allow us to have a genuine understanding of how the mattress feels and performs. We look at features that are valuable to consumers, such as temperature control, bounce, edge support, and motion isolation.

We also evaluate mattress performance for back, side, and stomach sleeping. Lying in different positions lets us know how supportive the bed is and if it’s good at relieving pressure.

We then take all the information we’ve gathered to rate the bed in specific categories. These results allow us to help our readers find the right mattress for their needs.

For this roundup, we prioritized features that are especially important for affordable mattresses.

Methodology Image- Sleep Advisor
A peek at how I conduct hands-on mattress testing.

Our Top Cheap Mattresses, Reviewed

Nectar – Editor’s Pick

Starting at $359

Nectar Mattress

Nectar Mattress

Nectar offers the deeper hug of a traditional memory foam bed but with updated cooling and a Forever warranty.

Score 3.3/5
Read Nectar Mattress Review
CHECK PRICE

Material

Foam

Trial Period

365 nights

Shipping Method

Free shipping

Firmness

Medium-firm: 6.5/10

Warranty

Lifetime warranty

Price Range

$$$$$

We recommend this mattress for the following sleeper types:

Joint Pain
This bed is perfect for anyone suffering from joint pain.
Hip Pain
This bed is perfect for anyone suffering from hip pain.
Back Sleeping
Ideal for lightweight and average weight back sleepers.
Side Sleeping
Ideal for lightweight and average weight side sleepers.

Financing Options

Financing options are available for this mattress.

Average Customer Rating
4.7/5
Watch Our Video Review
Starting at $359

Nectar Mattress

Nectar Mattress

Nectar offers the deeper hug of a traditional memory foam bed but with updated cooling and a Forever warranty.

Score 3.3/5
Read Nectar Mattress Review

Material

Foam

Warranty

Lifetime warranty

Firmness

Medium-firm: 6.5/10

Shipping Method

Free shipping

Trial Period

365 nights

Price Range

$$$$$

We recommend this mattress for the following sleeper types:

Joint Pain
This bed is perfect for anyone suffering from joint pain.
Hip Pain
This bed is perfect for anyone suffering from hip pain.
Back Sleeping
Ideal for lightweight and average weight back sleepers.
Side Sleeping
Ideal for lightweight and average weight side sleepers.

Financing Options

Financing options are available for this mattress.

Average Customer Rating
4.7/5
Watch Our Video Review
Nectar Mattress
Starting at $359

Nectar Mattress

Nectar offers the deeper hug of a traditional memory foam bed but with updated cooling and a Forever warranty.

Score 3.3/5
Read Nectar Mattress Review

Material

Foam

Firmness

Medium-firm: 6.5/10

Trial Period

365 nights

Warranty

Lifetime warranty

Shipping Method

Free shipping

Price Range

$$$$$

We recommend this mattress for the following sleeper types:

Joint Pain
This bed is perfect for anyone suffering from joint pain.
Hip Pain
This bed is perfect for anyone suffering from hip pain.
Back Sleeping
Ideal for lightweight and average weight back sleepers.
Side Sleeping
Ideal for lightweight and average weight side sleepers.

Financing Options

Financing options are available for this mattress.

Average Customer Rating
4.7/5
Watch Our Video Review

Why the Nectar Earned Best Cheap Mattress Overall

As I said in my video review, Nectar gets the gold when it comes to value and policies. A mattress of this quality, at this price, is quite rare.

This brand has never flagged in its efforts to create an affordable, comfortable mattress that ships directly to the customer. The design of this flagship model has undergone a few updates over the years, but its price remains budget-friendly, and its motion-absorbing foams make it a great choice for couples who aren’t concerned about sleeping too hot.

What’s the Nectar Mattress Made Of?

The Nectar is 12 inches tall with three foam layers sandwiched between an upper and lower cover.

Its top cover is made with polyethylene fibers that slow heat buildup. Underneath is a 2-inch layer of memory foam that cradles sensitive joints and sleeps a bit cooler than former versions of the material, thanks to an infusion of gel.

Next is a 3-inch layer of responsive foam that brings support and responsiveness to the table. It gives lift to the spine and creates a cozy barrier between the top comfort layer and the base layer beneath it.

Testing the layers and construction of the nectar mattress

That base layer consists of 7 inches of ActiveSupport foam. It gives the mattress a sturdy foundation and, along with the shift-resistant lower cover, ensures that the above layers stay aligned.

My Take: Their policies are stellar, and the price point is arguably hard to beat. Their competitors really could take some notes.

What I Liked

  • It aces pressure relief – The Nectar’s all-foam construction takes a lot of strain off of the body, compressing underneath you to form a soothing, cradling surface.
  • It’s responsive – The Nectar is very responsive to movement atop the bed. Although the foam doesn’t offer instantaneous bounce-back, it still moves fairly quickly to support you. For an all-foam bed, that’s a big plus—you shouldn’t find yourself feeling stuck.
  • Awesome policies – In addition to its price, Nectar’s policies are some of the best in the industry, if not the best. They include free shipping and returns, a year-long sleep trial, and a lifetime warranty.

Potential Drawbacks

  • Sinks too deep for stomach sleepers – When I laid down on my stomach, I noticed my lumbar region dipping a bit too low for comfort on the Nectar.
  • Won’t sleep especially cool – The Nectar does have a few cooling components within its design. But as an all-foam bed, it’s not going to be as cooling and breathable as a hybrid or innerspring model.

Customer Reviews of the Nectar Mattress

With thousands of reviews on Nectar’s website, the Nectar mattress has an average 4.8 out of 5 stars. One common customer complaint about the Nectar mattress is its longer-than-average break-in period, while many customers praise its excellent value and comfort once fully settled.

Interested in more details? Read our Nectar mattress review or check out some more options in our roundup of the best mattresses of 2024.

Emma Hybrid Comfort – Best Cheap Firm Mattress

Starting at $369

Emma Hybrid Comfort

With three foam layers for comfort and a zoned innerspring unit, this hybrid mattress from Emma can support sleepers of all shapes and sizes.

Score 3.7/5
Read Emma Hybrid Comfort Review
CHECK PRICE

Material

Hybrid

Trial Period

365 nights

Shipping Method

Free shipping

Firmness

Firm: 7/10

Warranty

10-year warranty

Price Range

$$$$$

We recommend this mattress for the following sleeper types:

Hot Sleepers
If you often overheat while you sleep, this mattress should help you stay cool.
Back Sleeping
Ideal for average weight and heavyweight back sleepers.
Stomach Sleeping
Ideal for lightweight and heavyweight stomach sleepers.

Financing Options

Financing options are available for this mattress.

Average Customer Rating
4.6/5
Starting at $369

Emma Hybrid Comfort

With three foam layers for comfort and a zoned innerspring unit, this hybrid mattress from Emma can support sleepers of all shapes and sizes.

Score 3.7/5
Read Emma Hybrid Comfort Review

Material

Hybrid

Warranty

10-year warranty

Firmness

Firm: 7/10

Shipping Method

Free shipping

Trial Period

365 nights

Price Range

$$$$$

We recommend this mattress for the following sleeper types:

Hot Sleepers
If you often overheat while you sleep, this mattress should help you stay cool.
Back Sleeping
Ideal for average weight and heavyweight back sleepers.
Stomach Sleeping
Ideal for lightweight and heavyweight stomach sleepers.

Financing Options

Financing options are available for this mattress.

Average Customer Rating
4.6/5
Starting at $369

Emma Hybrid Comfort

With three foam layers for comfort and a zoned innerspring unit, this hybrid mattress from Emma can support sleepers of all shapes and sizes.

Score 3.7/5
Read Emma Hybrid Comfort Review

Material

Hybrid

Firmness

Firm: 7/10

Trial Period

365 nights

Warranty

10-year warranty

Shipping Method

Free shipping

Price Range

$$$$$

We recommend this mattress for the following sleeper types:

Hot Sleepers
If you often overheat while you sleep, this mattress should help you stay cool.
Back Sleeping
Ideal for average weight and heavyweight back sleepers.
Stomach Sleeping
Ideal for lightweight and heavyweight stomach sleepers.

Financing Options

Financing options are available for this mattress.

Average Customer Rating
4.6/5

Why the Emma Hybrid Comfort Earned Best Cheap Firm Mattress

Not only is the Emma Hybrid Comfort an affordable firm mattress, it’s also (as its name spells out) a hybrid—so you get bracing foams on top of supportive springs at a cheap price. Its construction makes it a fitting choice for people who sleep on their backs or stomachs, as well as for heavier folks who don’t get the lift they need from other beds.

It’s worth noting that I felt hardly any sinkage from this mattress. When I say it’s firm, I really mean it! But, when we used the pressure map during our testing, we saw that despite its bracing feel, it still delivered a surprising amount of pressure relief.

What’s the Emma Hybrid Comfort Made Of?

The Emma Hybrid Comfort is 13 inches tall and has six total layers (seven if you count its lower cover).

At the surface is a soft, moisture-wicking cover. It’s followed by a layer of Airgocell® foam, a material engineered to divert extra heat.

Underneath are two more foam layers: a sheet of cooling memory foam, and a sheet of more-supportive “HRX” (or High Resiliency Extra) foam.

Looking at the Emma Hybrid Construction in the lab

The bed’s coil unit has individually wrapped springs that occupy seven different zones for specialized support under different areas of the body. They sit on top of a sturdy foam base.

My Take: Given all the deals that Emma runs on its site, it’s tough to find a more budget-friendly firm hybrid. It’ll feel too firm for some people, but if you’re plus-size or you value a robust, buoying bed, this one’s a great bed.

What I Liked

  • Keeps you lifted and aligned – My spine felt well-aligned on top of the Emma Hybrid Comfort, with no dipping around my midsection or hips. This aspect is a plus for people who often feel like they sink awkwardly on softer beds. 
  • Pressure relief is surprisingly present – Because of how firm this mattress feels, I was skeptical that it would also provide impressive pressure relief. But our testing confirmed that it wasn’t letting too much pressure build around key areas, like the hips and shoulders.

Potential Drawbacks

  • Too firm for side sleepers – Even with the pressure relief on board, this bed will likely feel too hard for side sleepers and lightweight people. 
  • Some crinkling – I noticed a noise during testing when I moved around on top of the Emma Hybrid Comfort. It’s a light crinkling sound that I believe is coming from one of the foam layers. It’s not disruptive, but something to note if you’re particular about noise.

Customer Reviews of the Emma Hybrid Comfort

The Emma Hybrid Comfort is a relatively new mattress, but the reviews it’s gathered so far on the Emma website give it an average score of 4.8 stars out of 5. A few reviewers say that it’s even firmer than they anticipated, but most people—including some plus-size customers—are satisfied with how durable and supportive it felt.

Want to know more? Read our full Emma Hybrid Comfort review or peruse the best firm mattresses.

DreamCloud – Best Cheap Mattress for Stomach Sleepers

Starting at $449

DreamCloud Original Mattress

DreamCloud Original Mattress

Luxurious hybrid at a great price with a lifetime warranty.

Score 3.8/5
Read DreamCloud Original Mattress Review
CHECK PRICE

Material

Hybrid

Trial Period

365 nights

Shipping Method

Free shipping

Firmness

Medium-firm: 6.5/10

Warranty

Lifetime warranty

Price Range

$$$$$

We recommend this mattress for the following sleeper types:

Hot Sleepers
If you often overheat while you sleep, this mattress should help you stay cool.
Seniors
This bed is perfect for senior sleepers.
Back Sleeping
Ideal for average weight back sleepers.

Financing Options

Financing options are available for this mattress.

Average Customer Rating
4.6/5
Watch Our Video Review
Starting at $449

DreamCloud Original Mattress

DreamCloud Original Mattress

Luxurious hybrid at a great price with a lifetime warranty.

Score 3.8/5
Read DreamCloud Original Mattress Review

Material

Hybrid

Warranty

Lifetime warranty

Firmness

Medium-firm: 6.5/10

Shipping Method

Free shipping

Trial Period

365 nights

Price Range

$$$$$

We recommend this mattress for the following sleeper types:

Hot Sleepers
If you often overheat while you sleep, this mattress should help you stay cool.
Seniors
This bed is perfect for senior sleepers.
Back Sleeping
Ideal for average weight back sleepers.

Financing Options

Financing options are available for this mattress.

Average Customer Rating
4.6/5
Watch Our Video Review
DreamCloud Original Mattress
Starting at $449

DreamCloud Original Mattress

Luxurious hybrid at a great price with a lifetime warranty.

Score 3.8/5
Read DreamCloud Original Mattress Review

Material

Hybrid

Firmness

Medium-firm: 6.5/10

Trial Period

365 nights

Warranty

Lifetime warranty

Shipping Method

Free shipping

Price Range

$$$$$

We recommend this mattress for the following sleeper types:

Hot Sleepers
If you often overheat while you sleep, this mattress should help you stay cool.
Seniors
This bed is perfect for senior sleepers.
Back Sleeping
Ideal for average weight back sleepers.

Financing Options

Financing options are available for this mattress.

Average Customer Rating
4.6/5
Watch Our Video Review

Why the DreamCloud Earned Best Cheap Mattress for Stomach Sleepers

The DreamCloud is a longstanding favorite of our review team as an affordable hybrid that’s even more supportive than its name implies. “It’s definitely not as [soft] as you’d imagine from a name like DreamCloud,” said our tester, Stuart, but he went on to clarify that this was a compliment. The medium-firm feel made it a treat when he was lying down on his stomach.

As a stomach sleeper, I definitely agree. The DreamCloud is an old standby for me when I imagine a bed that will keep my spine aligned and prevent uncomfortable sinking.

What’s the DreamCloud Made Of?

The DreamCloud has 6 layers if you count its top cover, and stands a luxurious 14 inches tall. Its cover incorporates cashmere for a memorably soft feel.

Underneath, you’ll find a 1.5-inch layer of soft poly foam that provides initial cushioning. It’s followed by a 1-inch layer of gel-infused memory foam and a firmer 2-inch layer of transition foam.

The combined effect of these foams should be a medium-firm feel that combats painful pressure but still props up your hips and midsection.

Next is the DreamCloud’s coil unit: 8.5 inches of coils that are reinforced along the edges. They rest on a base layer of 1 inch of firm foam.

Our testers testing the DreamCloud Foam mattress in the studio

My Take: As a stomach sleeper, I feel boosted, secure, and supported by the DreamCloud. Honestly, I think my fellow testers are getting a little sick of me saying how much I like this mattress.

What I Liked

  • Consistent support – No matter what sleep position I adopt on the DreamCloud, I feel supported. The even-keeled medium-firmness of the topmost memory foam layers complements the firmer innerspring unit beautifully.
  • Good motion absorption for a hybrid – Stuart and I were both impressed by the DreamCloud’s motion-dampening abilities. “It has pretty decent motion isolation, especially for a hybrid,” said Stuart. “You shouldn’t be too bothered by your partner’s movements during the night.”
  • Low price – The DreamCloud is commonly priced below $1,000 for a queen-sized model, which is a great deal for such a versatile hybrid.

Potential Drawbacks

  • Weaker edges – “DreamCloud is a bit lackluster on the edges. People who want to take advantage of the entire surface of the bed won’t be super excited about this one,” said Stuart.
  • Not for heavy folks – Even though Stuart and I felt fine on our stomachs, we think the DreamCloud might be just a bit too plush for heavier folks in this position. Body weight affects your perceived feel of a mattress, and only the very firmest of mattresses work for plus-sized folks who prefer to sleep on their stomachs.

Customer Reviews of the DreamCloud

The DreamCloud Original scores a solid 4.7 out of 5 stars among customers on its site. One potential downside of the DreamCloud Original mattress is its weight, making it challenging to move or rotate, but it offers excellent support and comfort for those who prefer a medium-firm feel.

Want to know more? Consult our DreamCloud mattress review or read up on the best mattresses for stomach sleepers.

Puffy Cloud – Best Affordable Luxury Mattress

Starting at $599

Puffy Cloud Mattress

Puffy Mattress

Puffy provides a classic memory foam feel with enhanced pressure relief that should appeal to most sleepers.

Score 3.0/5
Read Puffy Cloud Mattress Review
CHECK PRICE

Material

Foam

Trial Period

101 nights

Shipping Method

Free shipping

Firmness

Medium-firm: 6.5/10

Warranty

Lifetime warranty

Price Range

$$$$$

We recommend this mattress for the following sleeper types:

Kids
This bed is perfect for young sleepers.
Back Pain
This bed is perfect for anyone suffering from back pain.
Back Sleeping
Ideal for lightweight and average weight back sleepers.
Side Sleeping
Ideal for lightweight and average weight side sleepers.

Financing Options

Financing options are available for this mattress.

Average Customer Rating
5.0/5
Starting at $599

Puffy Cloud Mattress

Puffy Mattress

Puffy provides a classic memory foam feel with enhanced pressure relief that should appeal to most sleepers.

Score 3.0/5
Read Puffy Cloud Mattress Review

Material

Foam

Warranty

Lifetime warranty

Firmness

Medium-firm: 6.5/10

Shipping Method

Free shipping

Trial Period

101 nights

Price Range

$$$$$

We recommend this mattress for the following sleeper types:

Kids
This bed is perfect for young sleepers.
Back Pain
This bed is perfect for anyone suffering from back pain.
Back Sleeping
Ideal for lightweight and average weight back sleepers.
Side Sleeping
Ideal for lightweight and average weight side sleepers.

Financing Options

Financing options are available for this mattress.

Average Customer Rating
5.0/5
Puffy Mattress
Starting at $599

Puffy Cloud Mattress

Puffy provides a classic memory foam feel with enhanced pressure relief that should appeal to most sleepers.

Score 3.0/5
Read Puffy Cloud Mattress Review

Material

Foam

Firmness

Medium-firm: 6.5/10

Trial Period

101 nights

Warranty

Lifetime warranty

Shipping Method

Free shipping

Price Range

$$$$$

We recommend this mattress for the following sleeper types:

Kids
This bed is perfect for young sleepers.
Back Pain
This bed is perfect for anyone suffering from back pain.
Back Sleeping
Ideal for lightweight and average weight back sleepers.
Side Sleeping
Ideal for lightweight and average weight side sleepers.

Financing Options

Financing options are available for this mattress.

Average Customer Rating
5.0/5

Why the Puffy Cloud Earned Best Affordable Luxury Mattress

What makes a luxury mattress? In my opinion, a large part of the label stems from the materials—how unique they are, how they support you, and whether you feel pampered on them. Price can be a factor, but if you look hard enough, you’ll find some overlap between budget-friendly and fancypants beds. 

The Puffy Cloud is an affordable bed that meets many of my criteria for luxury. It’s an all-foam mattress, but it distinguishes itself from competitors with proprietary foams that endeavor to keep you especially cool and cozy.

What’s the Puffy Cloud Made Of?

The Puffy Cloud is 10 inches tall and has five total layers. Its stain-resistant cover features tiny clouds on its soft, hypoallergenic surface.

Underneath is a 2-inch layer of Cooling Cloud™ Foam. This material cradles your joints while the gel inside it prevents too much heat from accumulating. Also contributing to the cooling mission is the 2-inch sheet of Climate Comfort™ Foam beneath—it resists heat as well as humidity. 

A 6-inch base layer of supportive foam helps to isolate motion and encourage healthy spinal alignment. It and the above foams are held in place by a lower Grip Base Cover that also inhibits sliding on a flat foundation.

My Take: The Puffy Cloud feels a bit firmer than its name suggests, but that’s a great thing. While the upper layers swaddle you a bit, its supportive core protects your spine from misalignment and handily absorbs movement.

What I Liked

  • Pressure relief up top – The topmost layers of this bed really hug your body, so settling in feels lovely even as you’re getting the sturdy pushback from the lowest layer of supportive foam. 
  • Keeps motion contained – All-foam beds are famous for their motion isolation. The Puffy Cloud stifles movement quite well, so couples should rest easy even if one of them moves in their sleep.

Potential Drawbacks

  • Edges aren’t amazing – I’ve definitely encountered stronger edges in my tenure as a mattress tester. These aren’t super reinforced, so if you often roll up to the side of the bed, you might not feel very secure. 
  • Cooling foams don’t surpass springs – A hybrid will almost always be cooler than a foam bed, even if the foams have lots of cooling components. I didn’t overheat on the Puffy Cloud, but I didn’t feel a ton of cooling at work, either.

Customer Reviews of the Puffy Cloud

The Puffy Cloud has more than 12,000 reviews on Puffy’s website, and a reported score of 5 out of 5 stars. Side sleepers tend to love its mix of pressure relief and support, though a couple of reviews comment on a lack of notable cooling.

Interested in exploring further? Check out our complete Puffy Cloud mattress review, or investigate the best luxury mattresses.

Brooklyn Bedding Essential – Best Cheap Hybrid Mattress

Starting at $399

Brooklyn Bedding Essential

The Brooklyn Essential is an impressively affordable hybrid with a simple yet satisfying construction.

Score 3.7/5
Read Brooklyn Bedding Essential Review
CHECK PRICE

Material

Hybrid

Trial Period

120 nights

Shipping Method

Free shipping

Firmness

Medium-firm: 6.5/10

Warranty

10-year warranty

Price Range

$$$$$

We recommend this mattress for the following sleeper types:

Hot Sleepers
If you often overheat while you sleep, this mattress should help you stay cool.
Back Sleeping
Ideal for lightweight and average weight back sleepers.
Side Sleeping
Ideal for lightweight and average weight side sleepers.

Financing Options

Financing options are available for this mattress.

Average Customer Rating
3.7/5
Starting at $399

Brooklyn Bedding Essential

The Brooklyn Essential is an impressively affordable hybrid with a simple yet satisfying construction.

Score 3.7/5
Read Brooklyn Bedding Essential Review

Material

Hybrid

Warranty

10-year warranty

Firmness

Medium-firm: 6.5/10

Shipping Method

Free shipping

Trial Period

120 nights

Price Range

$$$$$

We recommend this mattress for the following sleeper types:

Hot Sleepers
If you often overheat while you sleep, this mattress should help you stay cool.
Back Sleeping
Ideal for lightweight and average weight back sleepers.
Side Sleeping
Ideal for lightweight and average weight side sleepers.

Financing Options

Financing options are available for this mattress.

Average Customer Rating
3.7/5
Starting at $399

Brooklyn Bedding Essential

The Brooklyn Essential is an impressively affordable hybrid with a simple yet satisfying construction.

Score 3.7/5
Read Brooklyn Bedding Essential Review

Material

Hybrid

Firmness

Medium-firm: 6.5/10

Trial Period

120 nights

Warranty

10-year warranty

Shipping Method

Free shipping

Price Range

$$$$$

We recommend this mattress for the following sleeper types:

Hot Sleepers
If you often overheat while you sleep, this mattress should help you stay cool.
Back Sleeping
Ideal for lightweight and average weight back sleepers.
Side Sleeping
Ideal for lightweight and average weight side sleepers.

Financing Options

Financing options are available for this mattress.

Average Customer Rating
3.7/5

Why the Brooklyn Bedding Essential Earned Best Cheap Hybrid Mattress

The Brooklyn Essential is a mattress that balances coveted hybrid features with a budget-friendly price. In fact, it’s one of the cheapest mattresses on this list, with a full-price queen selling for less than $1,000.

Thankfully, its low cost doesn’t signal low quality. This bed was designed to be a simple yet reliable hybrid that will withstand years of use.

What’s the Brooklyn Bedding Essential Mattress Made Of?

The Brooklyn Bedding Essential has four total layers and a 10-inch thickness.

It’s topped with two layers of high-density foam: a 1.5-inch quilted comfort layer, and a 0.75-inch transition layer. Both provide cozy pressure relief and a cushioned buffer between you and an 8-inch spring unit.

Every spring is made of durable steel that’s been rolled at one of Brooklyn Bedding’s American facilities. The coils are pocketed in individual sleeves so that they only compress when pressure is applied. The ones around the perimeter of the bed are also thicker, which means you’ll have more room to spread out without worrying about the edges dipping.

Underneath the coils is a high-density foam base. It gives the springs a solid anchoring point and ensures that the entire mattress has a firm foundation.

Our Take: We love that Brooklyn Bedding repurposes materials from its more ostentatious mattresses to build this affordable hybrid. It’s not as flashy as some models, but its efficient design translates to reliable performance and a welcome, cheap price.

What We Liked

  • Widely-liked firmness – The Essential’s medium-firm feel is meant to suit a broad range of comfort preferences, even if you and your partner are slightly misaligned on the ideal firmness for a bed.
  • Robust foams – All of the foams in this bed have a high density, which adds to the mattress’s lifespan.
  • Quality control – Brooklyn Bedding likes to keep a close eye on its products from design to delivery. Thus, the majority of the materials in the Brooklyn Essential are manufactured in-house.

Potential Drawbacks

  • A simple design – There aren’t many luxurious add-ons to this bed, as it’s meant to be a low-cost hybrid with comfort and durability as its main selling points.
  • Motion might transfer – The Essential likely won’t isolate motion as well as an all-foam bed.

Customer Reviews of the Brooklyn Bedding Essential

According to Brooklyn Bedding’s website, the Essential mattress scores about 4.5 out of 5 stars. Users have noted that the Brooklyn Bedding Essential mattress offers a budget-friendly option for customers, however some have mentioned that it may not be as durable as higher-priced alternatives.

Looking for more info? Peruse our roundup of the best hybrid beds.

Bear Original – Best Cheap Mattress for Back Pain

Starting at $511

Bear Mattress

This flagship model was thoughtfully crafted and assembled to be an attractive all-foam option for athletes who need better rest.

Score 3.0/5
Read Bear Mattress Review
CHECK PRICE

Material

Foam

Trial Period

120 nights

Shipping Method

Free shipping

Firmness

Medium-firm: 6.5/10

Warranty

Lifetime warranty

Price Range

$$$$$

We recommend this mattress for the following sleeper types:

Hot Sleepers
If you often overheat while you sleep, this mattress should help you stay cool.
Back Sleeping
Ideal for lightweight and average weight back sleepers.
Side Sleeping
Ideal for lightweight and average weight side sleepers.

Financing Options

Financing options are available for this mattress.

Average Customer Rating
4.7/5
Watch Our Video Review
Starting at $511

Bear Mattress

This flagship model was thoughtfully crafted and assembled to be an attractive all-foam option for athletes who need better rest.

Score 3.0/5
Read Bear Mattress Review

Material

Foam

Warranty

Lifetime warranty

Firmness

Medium-firm: 6.5/10

Shipping Method

Free shipping

Trial Period

120 nights

Price Range

$$$$$

We recommend this mattress for the following sleeper types:

Hot Sleepers
If you often overheat while you sleep, this mattress should help you stay cool.
Back Sleeping
Ideal for lightweight and average weight back sleepers.
Side Sleeping
Ideal for lightweight and average weight side sleepers.

Financing Options

Financing options are available for this mattress.

Average Customer Rating
4.7/5
Watch Our Video Review
Starting at $511

Bear Mattress

This flagship model was thoughtfully crafted and assembled to be an attractive all-foam option for athletes who need better rest.

Score 3.0/5
Read Bear Mattress Review

Material

Foam

Firmness

Medium-firm: 6.5/10

Trial Period

120 nights

Warranty

Lifetime warranty

Shipping Method

Free shipping

Price Range

$$$$$

We recommend this mattress for the following sleeper types:

Hot Sleepers
If you often overheat while you sleep, this mattress should help you stay cool.
Back Sleeping
Ideal for lightweight and average weight back sleepers.
Side Sleeping
Ideal for lightweight and average weight side sleepers.

Financing Options

Financing options are available for this mattress.

Average Customer Rating
4.7/5
Watch Our Video Review

Why the Bear Original Earned Best Cheap Mattress for Back Pain

If you’re experiencing back pain, owning a comfortable mattress is crucial. The Bear Original is designed with both budgets and backs in mind: it’s priced cheaply, but has phenomenal back support. If you can stretch your budget just a bit further, you can also add an innovative performance textile called Celliant® into its cover for an extra fee.

By reportedly converting body heat into infrared light, Celliant® may increase localized blood flow and reduce inflammation inside the body’s tissues. Additionally, Bear claims that the this textile can help you to fall asleep more quickly and stay asleep for longer. When you pair those qualities with a pleasantly firm feel, you get a very back-friendly bed.

“I did really like this bed when I laid on my back and when I laid on my stomach,” said my fellow tester, Mark. “It was firm enough for those two positions.”

What’s the Bear Original Mattress Made Of?

The Bear Original is 10 inches high and has three key layers. They’re ensconced inside a breathable TENCEL™ cover, or, for an additional fee, a cover made with Celliant®. This performance textile purports to boost tissue recovery and blood flow in the parts of the body it touches.

Its first comfort layer consists of gel memory foam. This foam molds to the shape of your silhouette and soothes strained pressure points, while the gel inside it prevents heat from building up.

The dynamic transitional foam underneath it adds more support to the mix, and the base layer of high-density foam makes for a stable foundation.

Bear Original Mattress

Our Take: “It’s a great option for couples. It’s not likely you’ll disturb one another’s sleep.” Stuart Petty, Sleep Advisor Mattress Tester

What We Liked

  • An appealing firmness – The Bear Original has a medium-firm feel—6.5 on our firmness scale—that most sleepers can appreciate. “It’s a little firmer than the typical all-foam mattress, which should make it a little bit more versatile for different kinds of sleepers,” said Stuart.
  • A standout textile – There aren’t many mattress brands that have thought to use Celliant® in their beds. If you’d like to try this textile out, consider whether it may be worth the added cost of the upgraded cover.
  • It dampens motion – The mattress’s all-foam design stands up well to motion transfer, so it’s especially recommended for couples, even if one or both people tend to toss and turn. “I’m pretty sure you could do a cannonball into this bed and your partner would be none the wiser,” said Stuart.

Potential Drawbacks

  • Too tough for side sleepers – “When I was laying on my side, [the Bear Original] was maybe just a little bit too firm. I was comfortable, but I do think I would have a hard time sleeping on it overnight,” said Mark. Stuart agreed: “I’d prefer something with slightly more sink for my wider shoulders.”
  • Not a lot of bounce – Because it’s an all-foam mattress, the Bear Original doesn’t have a ton of springiness to it. You’ll still feel lifted by the mattress (rather than stuck inside it), but it won’t have the same bounce as a hybrid model.

Customer Reviews of the Bear Original

According to Bear’s website, the Bear Original scores about 4.5 out of 5 stars. Customers appreciate the Bear Original mattress for its excellent pressure relief but have reported that its edge support may be lacking, which could affect those who use the full mattress surface.

Need more details? Read our full Bear Original mattress review or check out the best mattresses for back pain.

Cocoon Chill – Best Cheap Memory Foam Mattress

Starting at $399

Cocoon Chill Mattress

product image of cocoon chill

The Cocoon Chill has a 10-inch profile and should fit a range of sleepers thanks to its medium-firm feel.

Score 4.0/5
Read Cocoon Chill Mattress Review
CHECK PRICE

Material

Foam

Trial Period

100 nights

Shipping Method

Free shipping

Firmness

Medium-firm: 6/10

Warranty

10-year warranty

Price Range

$$$$$

We recommend this mattress for the following sleeper types:

Hot Sleepers
If you often overheat while you sleep, this mattress should help you stay cool.
Back Sleeping
Ideal for average weight back sleepers.
Side Sleeping
Ideal for lightweight and average weight side sleepers.

Financing Options

Financing options are available for this mattress.

Average Customer Rating
4.6/5
Starting at $399

Cocoon Chill Mattress

product image of cocoon chill

The Cocoon Chill has a 10-inch profile and should fit a range of sleepers thanks to its medium-firm feel.

Score 4.0/5
Read Cocoon Chill Mattress Review

Material

Foam

Warranty

10-year warranty

Firmness

Medium-firm: 6/10

Shipping Method

Free shipping

Trial Period

100 nights

Price Range

$$$$$

We recommend this mattress for the following sleeper types:

Hot Sleepers
If you often overheat while you sleep, this mattress should help you stay cool.
Back Sleeping
Ideal for average weight back sleepers.
Side Sleeping
Ideal for lightweight and average weight side sleepers.

Financing Options

Financing options are available for this mattress.

Average Customer Rating
4.6/5
product image of cocoon chill
Starting at $399

Cocoon Chill Mattress

The Cocoon Chill has a 10-inch profile and should fit a range of sleepers thanks to its medium-firm feel.

Score 4.0/5
Read Cocoon Chill Mattress Review

Material

Foam

Firmness

Medium-firm: 6/10

Trial Period

100 nights

Warranty

10-year warranty

Shipping Method

Free shipping

Price Range

$$$$$

We recommend this mattress for the following sleeper types:

Hot Sleepers
If you often overheat while you sleep, this mattress should help you stay cool.
Back Sleeping
Ideal for average weight back sleepers.
Side Sleeping
Ideal for lightweight and average weight side sleepers.

Financing Options

Financing options are available for this mattress.

Average Customer Rating
4.6/5

Why the Cocoon Chill Earned Best Cheap Memory Foam Mattress

If you love the feel of memory foam, but don’t want to spend thousands on a mattress overstuffed with features, the Cocoon Chill has your back. Its first two layers—a cover imbued with heat-absorbing material and a layer of breathable memory foam—also grant it more temperature control than standard foam mattresses.

Its all-foam construction allows for a pleasing price point: a queen-sized version is often available for less than $1,000 with applicable promotions.

What’s the Cocoon Chill Made Of?

The Cocoon Chill is 10 inches tall and has four layers including its top cover. That cover features phase change material in its fabric that helps with absorbing and diverting unwanted head.

Next comes a layer of Perfect Fit Memory Foam, a breathable foam that molds to your body and takes the pressure off sensitive joints. For an additional fee, you can increase your Chill’s cooling abilities by opting to infuse the memory foam layer with the same phase change material that’s in the cover.

Underneath is a layer of more responsive foam that helps with motion isolation. Finally, a layer of dense and durable foam serves as the stabilizing foundation of the bed.

Our Take: Phase change material is one of the most advanced cooling methodologies available. Memory foam beds are often at risk of overheating, but this one should prove to be pleasantly cooler than its competitors.

What We Liked

  • Versatile firmness – At a 6 on our firmness scale, this bed has a medium-firm feel that avoids too much plushness but also isn’t uncomfortably unyielding. It should work for a wide variety of sleep positions. 
  • Safe foams – All of the foams inside the Chill are CertiPUR-US® certified, which means they never contain certain hazardous materials such as formaldehyde and ozone depleters.
Cocoon Chill Hybrid Mattress

Potential Drawbacks

  • Not a lot of bounce – As an all-foam bed, this mattress lacks the springy responsiveness of innerspring and hybrid mattresses.
  • Too soft for heavy sleepers – This bed feels reassuringly supportive under its softer foam layers, but larger sleepers (and potentially stomach sleepers) might need an even harder surface that doesn’t sink as much.

Customer Reviews of the Cocoon Chill

On Sealy’s website, the Cocoon Chill has a score of 4.7 out of 5 stars. Customers prize its medium-firmness and how it can accommodate both their and their partner’s preferences. The negative reviews tend to say it’s either too hard or too soft, a testament to the subjectivity of perceived firmness.

Want to learn more? Check out our full Cocoon Chill mattress review or browse the best memory foam beds for more options.

Siena – Best Cheap King Mattress

Starting at $199

Siena Mattress

Siena Mattress

The Siena is a memory foam bed aimed at providing sleepers with the right combination of support and comfort.

Read Siena Mattress Review
CHECK PRICE

Material

Foam

Trial Period

180 Nights

Shipping Method

Free shipping

Firmness

Firm: 7/10

Warranty

10-year warranty

Price Range

$$$$$

We recommend this mattress for the following sleeper types:

Kids
This bed is perfect for young sleepers.
Back Sleeping
Ideal for lightweight back sleepers.
Side Sleeping
Ideal for lightweight side sleepers.

Financing Options

Financing options are available for this mattress.

Average Customer Rating
4.5/5
Starting at $199

Siena Mattress

Siena Mattress

The Siena is a memory foam bed aimed at providing sleepers with the right combination of support and comfort.

Read Siena Mattress Review

Material

Foam

Warranty

10-year warranty

Firmness

Firm: 7/10

Shipping Method

Free shipping

Trial Period

180 Nights

Price Range

$$$$$

We recommend this mattress for the following sleeper types:

Kids
This bed is perfect for young sleepers.
Back Sleeping
Ideal for lightweight back sleepers.
Side Sleeping
Ideal for lightweight side sleepers.

Financing Options

Financing options are available for this mattress.

Average Customer Rating
4.5/5
Siena Mattress
Starting at $199

Siena Mattress

The Siena is a memory foam bed aimed at providing sleepers with the right combination of support and comfort.

Read Siena Mattress Review

Material

Foam

Firmness

Firm: 7/10

Trial Period

180 Nights

Warranty

10-year warranty

Shipping Method

Free shipping

Price Range

$$$$$

We recommend this mattress for the following sleeper types:

Kids
This bed is perfect for young sleepers.
Back Sleeping
Ideal for lightweight back sleepers.
Side Sleeping
Ideal for lightweight side sleepers.

Financing Options

Financing options are available for this mattress.

Average Customer Rating
4.5/5

Why the Siena Earned Best Cheap King Mattress

A king-size Siena sells for around $500 to $800 depending on active promotions, making it one of the cheapest king beds you can order. It’s an all-foam bed with a simple yet mindful construction that should keep motion transfer to a minimum.

Because the brand bypasses jazzy features that could ramp up the price, they can keep the cost of their mattress low while its feel stays comfortable and cool.

What’s the Siena Mattress Made Of?

The Siena is 10 inches tall with 5 layers, including a top and bottom cover. The top cover is quite breathable and encourages cooling airflow, whereas the bottom cover’s shift-resistant design holds the mattress firmly in place.

The first layer of gel memory foam molds to your body for palpable pressure relief. The gel inside the foam works to prevent heat buildup, so even though you feel cozily cradled, you shouldn’t get too warm.

Underneath the memory foam is a layer of more-supportive poly foam, made with a ripple in its structure that permits even more air transfer.

Additionally, between each layer of foam inside the bed, air pockets keep heat from accumulating. At the bottom of the bed is a thick foam foundation that anchors the comfort layers atop a durable base.

Our Take: The Siena is a no-frills bed that should nevertheless satisfy the key requirements for any quality mattress: a cozy feel backed by suitable support. If your budget doesn’t allow you to browse the latest and fanciest mattresses, the Siena will be there for you.

What We Liked

  • Foam means minimal motion – If you share your Siena with a partner, the foam layers should absorb motion well enough to prevent you from disturbing one another during sleep.
  • A firmness that’s likely to please – The Siena’s CertiPUR-US® certified foams have a medium-firm feel that should work well for most sleep styles and body types.
  • Generous trial period – When you order this bed, you’ll have 180 days to try it out in your home.

Potential Drawbacks

  • Not very springy – Because it’s an all-foam mattress, the Siena won’t be an optimal choice for people who want their beds to feel bouncy or very responsive.
  • A simple design – The Siena prioritizes baseline comfort and cooling over extraneous bells and whistles, so it’s a modest 10 inches tall and lacks bonus features that some sleepers find compelling.

Customer Reviews of the Siena Mattress

On the Siena website, this mattress scored approximately a 4.2 out of 5 stars from 1279 reviews. The A favorite among customers for its plush comfort, it may not suit those seeking a firmer sleeping surface, as per customer feedback.

Want to know more? Read through our roundup of the best king size mattresses.

Dreamfoam Essential– Best Cheap Queen Mattress

Starting at $205

Dreamfoam Essential Memory Foam Mattress

Dreamfoam Essential Mattress

The Dreamfoam Essential is a versatile mattress that brings everything we love about all-foam models, making it a great option for value and comfort seekers.

Score 4.0/5
Read Dreamfoam Essential Memory Foam Mattress Review
CHECK PRICE

Material

Foam

Trial Period

120 nights

Shipping Method

Free shipping

Firmness

Firm: 7.5/10

Warranty

10-year warranty

Price Range

$$$$$

We recommend this mattress for the following sleeper types:

Back Sleeping
Ideal for lightweight and average weight back sleepers.
Side Sleeping
Ideal for lightweight and average weight side sleepers.

Financing Options

Financing options are available for this mattress.

Average Customer Rating
4.7/5
Watch Our Video Review
Starting at $205

Dreamfoam Essential Memory Foam Mattress

Dreamfoam Essential Mattress

The Dreamfoam Essential is a versatile mattress that brings everything we love about all-foam models, making it a great option for value and comfort seekers.

Score 4.0/5
Read Dreamfoam Essential Memory Foam Mattress Review

Material

Foam

Warranty

10-year warranty

Firmness

Firm: 7.5/10

Shipping Method

Free shipping

Trial Period

120 nights

Price Range

$$$$$

We recommend this mattress for the following sleeper types:

Back Sleeping
Ideal for lightweight and average weight back sleepers.
Side Sleeping
Ideal for lightweight and average weight side sleepers.

Financing Options

Financing options are available for this mattress.

Average Customer Rating
4.7/5
Watch Our Video Review
Dreamfoam Essential Mattress
Starting at $205

Dreamfoam Essential Memory Foam Mattress

The Dreamfoam Essential is a versatile mattress that brings everything we love about all-foam models, making it a great option for value and comfort seekers.

Score 4.0/5
Read Dreamfoam Essential Memory Foam Mattress Review

Material

Foam

Firmness

Firm: 7.5/10

Trial Period

120 nights

Warranty

10-year warranty

Shipping Method

Free shipping

Price Range

$$$$$

We recommend this mattress for the following sleeper types:

Back Sleeping
Ideal for lightweight and average weight back sleepers.
Side Sleeping
Ideal for lightweight and average weight side sleepers.

Financing Options

Financing options are available for this mattress.

Average Customer Rating
4.7/5
Watch Our Video Review

Why the Dreamfoam Essential Earned Best Cheap Queen Mattress

If you want a queen bed but your budget is restricted to $500 or so, your options for a quality mattress begin to dwindle. Thankfully, the Dreamfoam Essential has emerged as a top contender in this price range—and it’s available in five different thicknesses.

Our review team praised this bed’s customizability, cooling, and the fact that it was “one of the most affordable mattresses on the market.”

What’s the Dreamfoam Essential Made Of?

The 6-, 8-, and 10-inch models of this bed are dual-layer mattresses that skew firm or medium-firm. They begin with a 2- or 2.5-inch layer of gel swirl memory foam, which conforms to the curves of your body while remaining pleasantly cool. Beneath the memory foam is a foundation of high-density foam that serves as the bed’s sturdy base.

On the other hand, the 12- and 14-inch versions feature three layers—there’s a VariFlex foam layer for even more cushioning between the memory foam and base—and a softer feel, ideal for those who like more sinkage.

All of the Dreamfoam Essential models feature open-cell technology in their layers, which will help with breathability and temperature control. This bed also features an eco-friendly finish that should prevent lasting damage from light spills or stains.

Our Take: “If you’re looking to save some money on your next mattress, this is probably one of the best options out there.” – Stuart, Sleep Advisor Mattress Tester

What We Liked

  • Motion-isolating foams – The Dreamfoam Essential does a great job of isolating motion, especially if you spring for one of the firmer models. “You’ll still need to do your best impression of a ninja,” joked Stuart, “But generally, you shouldn’t disturb your partner too much when you’re moving around on this mattress.”
  • It’s pretty cool – The open-cell structure of the foams in this bed plus the gel in its memory foam layer guard against too much heat buildup. “This mattress provided a cool sleep experience,” said Stuart.
  • Lots of heights and sizes – In addition to its multiple height options, this bed comes in a wide variety of sizes, including less common variants such as Olympic Queen and RV bunk. Our tester Liz liked having this many options to choose from: “Being able to choose the thickness is helpful for filling bunk beds, RVs, and fitted sheets.”

Potential Drawbacks

  • No fancy perks – “The Dreamfoam Essential mattress is a little minimalistic in its design,” said Stuart. With only two or three layers to its construction, this isn’t a mattress for someone who wants a tall or ostentatious bed. Stuart also remarked that this bed probably won’t last as long as higher-priced models.
  • Thinner means firmer – The thinner versions of this mattress are quite firm. Stuart tried the 8-inch version, and said that he felt aligned on his back and stomach, but found it too firm for side sleeping.

Customer Reviews of the DreamFoam Essential

On DreamFoam’s website, the DreamFoam Essential ranks 4.7 out of 5 stars. Customers noted a potential downside of the DreamFoam Essential mattress is that it may not be as durable as some higher-end mattresses, but it offers an affordable option with decent comfort and support.

Curious about this bed? Read our Dreamfoam Essential mattress review or browse the best queen-size mattresses.

Other Cheap Mattresses We Tested

While these mattresses didn’t make our list, Each of these beds are great mattresses for shoppers on a budget. Check out our featured recommendations below.

Product
Firmness
Trial Period
Zinus Green Tea mattress product image
Zinus Green Tea Memory Foam Mattress
Medium-firm: 6/10
100 nights
Leesa Studio mattress product image
Studio by Leesa Mattress
Firm: 7.5/10
100 nights
linenspa 10inch hybrid
Linenspa 10 Inch Medium Hybrid
Firm: 7/10
100 nights
Zinus Green Tea mattress product image
Product
Zinus Green Tea Memory Foam Mattress
Firmness
Medium-firm: 6/10
Trial Period
100 nights
Leesa Studio mattress product image
Product
Studio by Leesa Mattress
Firmness
Firm: 7.5/10
Trial Period
100 nights
linenspa 10inch hybrid
Product
Linenspa 10 Inch Medium Hybrid
Firmness
Firm: 7/10
Trial Period
100 nights

What is A Budget Mattress?

What may be considered a low price for one person, may not be for another. Therefore, when it comes to what is considered a budget mattress, we say that these fall into a range of 250-1,000 dollars for a Queen, and last five to seven years depending on the frequency of use.

Budget-friendly mattresses can be found within every bed type, including innerspring, memory foam, hybrid, and latex. However, memory foam and innerspring mattresses tend to be the cheapest among the different mattress types.

Cheaper mattresses don’t always come with the fancy construction of those in higher price ranges, but that doesn’t mean they aren’t made with quality materials that should help you sleep well.

Compare Prices of the Best Affordable Mattresses

MattressBest For?Queen PriceFull Review
NectarBest Overall$659Nectar Mattress Review
Emma HybridBack Sleepers$1199Emma Hybrid Review
DreamcloudStomach Sleepers$799Dreamcloud Mattress Review
Puffy CloudLuxury$1042Puffy Cloud Review
Brooklyn EssentialHybrid$932Review Coming Soon
Bear OriginalBack Pain$999Bear Mattress Review
Cocoon ChillMemory Foam$699Cocoon Chill Review
SienaKing Size$799Siena Mattress Review
Dreamfoam EssentialQueen Size$524Dreamfoam Essential Review

What to Look for In A Cheap Mattress

When shopping for a mattress on a tight budget, there are several factors to consider before hitting “add to cart”. Along with the price, you should also consider the type of mattress it is, along with other important features related to the quality of the product and how it is expected to perform for different needs and sleep styles.

Type of Mattress

Innerspring Mattress

Innerspring mattresses are the oldest and typically the cheapest type of mattress available. They consist of thinner comfort layers on top of a coil unit, which can have either interconnected or pocketed (independent) coils.

If you’re looking for a budget mattress without too many bells and whistles, a classic, no-frills innerspring is a good choice. Just be sure to monitor the bed for any sagging or poking from the coils.

Helix Midnight Luxe Mattress Construction
Tester, Julia Forbes, looking at the construction of the Helix Midnight, an innerspring mattress

Average Price: A few hundred dollars for especially basic models with a short lifespan, and around 1,000 dollars for more reliable versions.

Hybrid Mattress

Because they combine layers of foam with a supportive coil unit, hybrid mattresses can be tough to reconcile with a tight budget — they’re essentially two types of mattresses in one package.

Finding a cheap hybrid mattress may mean timing your search around holiday sales or scoping the internet for deals. You don’t want to compromise too much on the quality of the foams or the springs in the bed, so bypass any tempting offers that don’t share a lot of information about the bed’s makeup.

Average Price: There are few hybrids available for less than 1,000 dollars. You’re more likely to pay 1,500 dollars and up for these beds.

Memory Foam Mattress

Memory foam is best known for its ability to contour the body, creating a responsive “cradle” as you sleep.

Like innerspring mattresses, memory foam beds made of only foam layers are some of the most affordable mattresses out there. You’ll want to ensure the quality of the foam before you buy, so look for foams that have been CertiPUR-US® certified — this designation means that they’re free of certain harmful chemicals and pass emissions standards.

Julia Forbes, our lead product tester, cutting open the Tempur-Pro-Breeze mattress
Looking at the layers of a memory foam mattress while mattress testing

Average Price: Discounted and bare-bones models can go for around 500 dollars, but models with trustworthy and durable foams cost closer to 1,000 dollars and up.

Latex Mattress

Latex mattresses incorporate latex foam, a poly foam alternative that’s derived from the sap of rubber trees. It’s a relative newcomer to the mattress scene and its advantages — heightened cooling, a comfortable-yet-springy feel, and impressive longevity, to name a few — mean it’s priced a bit higher than more traditional materials.

For many shoppers, the natural and eco-friendly origins of latex foam make it a desirable choice, but as with all mattress materials, latex can be processed and utilized in different ways. Be sure to look into how a mattress brand manufactures and certifies its latex before buying.

Average Price: You’ll typically pay more than 1,000 dollars for a quality latex mattress, so keep an eye out for deals if you’re looking for a budget model.

Julia Forbes, testing a latex mattress
Our lead product tester, looking at latex mattress construction

Other Considerations When Shopping for a Budget Mattress

Sleeping Position

Our testers test each sleeping position to make sure each mattress fits the right sleeper

Your preferred sleeping position is always an important factor when shopping for a mattress.

Generally, we recommend softer beds to side sleepers, who need something to relieve pressure on the shoulder and hip. Medium-firm beds, which provide a nice balance of firm support with softer pressure relief are usually best for back and combination sleepers, and firmer beds that keep the hips lifted are better for stomach sleepers.

Weight/Body Type of Sleepers

A person’s body type and weight should be taken into consideration when shopping for a budget mattress.

While many heavyweight sleepers should be well served by the higher firmness levels in some budget mattresses, the extra weight may cause the cheaper materials and construction to break down more quickly. This may lead to issues with spinal alignment, as well as needing to replace the mattress more quickly. Conversely, very petite sleepers may not sink into these beds as rapidly, but they should still look out for softer options so they experience enough cushioning to avoid that ‘sleeping on a rock’ feel.

Many average-weight individuals are likely to sleep fine on a budget mattress, they will still want to consider the firmness level and how it correlates with their preferred sleep position before purchasing a budget bed.

Firmness

Firmness reflects how soft or hard a bed feels. Many budget beds have a medium-firm feel, which can serve a large population of sleepers.

However, it should be noted that many cheaper mattresses don’t come in multiple firmness options. Therefore, if you are someone who prefers a much softer bed, you may have issues finding one in a lower price range.

Cooling

Considering that many budget mattresses are made from memory foam or poly foams, materials that have a tendency to trap heat, temperature regulation may be a big concern when shopping for a budget-friendly mattress. Although it may not be economically feasible for manufacturers to incorporate the same kind of cooling technology that they do in their higher-end models, many of them do incorporate gel or other cooling materials in their budget mattresses to help keep sleepers from overheating.

Learn More: Best Cooling Mattresses

Julia Forbes testing how fast a mattress cools down
Julia testing the cooling properties of each mattress using a temperature control gun as the bed cools down

Motion Isolation

If you sleep with a partner or pet, preventing their nightly movements from waking you is probably a priority. Fortunately, many budget mattresses are made from memory foam, which is known for its motion-isolating properties. This means that many budget mattresses should do an excellent job at keeping a co-sleeper’s movements from traveling to the other side of the bed and waking their partners.

Sex

Sexually active couples typically enjoy beds that are responsive. If your bed is responsive, it can be easier to move around during intimacy without feeling stuck. Further, the amount of bounce that a mattress possesses is another feature that can help make sex more enjoyable.

Beds made from innerspring coils and latex are likely to provide optimal performance for sex, but unfortunately, it may be somewhat difficult to find a suitable budget mattress with latex because most latex models are naturally sourced and can be expensive. Many budget mattresses are made from foam, which is much slower to respond and may not have a lot of bounce.

If bounce and budget are top priorities, though, a great solution is a traditional innerspring bed, which can provide plenty of bounce at a cheaper price.

Pressure Relief

Pressure relief is important for sensitive areas like the shoulders, knees, and hips. If a mattress is too hard, pressure can build up around the parts of the body that come in contact with the mattress because they won’t have enough contouring. Mattresses that are too soft, though, can allow sleepers to sink too far into a bed, and this lack of support may also cause abundant pressure.

Related: Best Mattresses for Pressure Relief

It is important to look for a mattress that will support you and disperse your body weight evenly. A good place to start is with medium-firm beds that typically provide the right balance of support and pressure relief to most sleepers, and fortunately, many budget beds have a medium-firm feel.

Edge Support

Julia Forbes testing edge support in a mattress
Julia Forbes testing edge support.

Couples and those who have a tendency to sleep on the edge of the bed will want to see if the outer perimeter has been reinforced. Reinforced edges are usually made by putting extra-strong coils or high-density foam around the outside of the bed.

However, this could be an area where budget mattresses decide to cut costs. Therefore, if this is an important consideration for you, you will want to make sure that it is a feature in the bed of your choice.

Read more about bed edge support here.

Budget

The price of a mattress is the focal point here. Since we’re reviewing budget mattresses, we made sure all models have a Queen size option with a general average near or slightly above the 1,000-dollar mark. These beds reflect relatively cheap prices within the mattress industry, while still offering technologies, features, and materials that make them worth the money.

Material Quality

Julia Forbes testing the layers of a mattress
Julia Forbes testing for material quality and construction.

Mattresses on the lower end of the price scale are often made with cheaper materials, such as lower-quality memory foam or poly foam. Additionally, cheaper all-foam mattresses are more likely to use fiberglass in their production as a way to meet flammability standards in a low cost-matter. While this isn’t necessarily a deal breaker, it does mean that you will have to be aware that there is potential for fiberglass to irritate your skin and respiratory system.

The mattress cover may also be made from cheaper materials, and this could cause it to wear down faster.

Sleep Trial and Warranty

Sleep trials are an excellent way to make sure that your budget-friendly mattress will work for you. These trials can last anywhere from 100 to 365 nights, depending on the brand. We advise getting a bed with at least a 100-night trial to give you enough time to know if you like your mattress, and if you don’t, you can send it back.

Sleep trials differ from manufacturer to manufacturer. Therefore, make sure that you have a full understanding of the trial period for your specific mattress.

Warranties will vary amongst manufacturers but most will be at least 10 years long. Like with sleep trials, you will need to read your warranty carefully to see what it entails. However, having a warranty is a good sign that although your mattress may cost less, the manufacturer still stands by its durability.

Who Should Consider a Cheap Bed?

People with a guest room – If the bed is for the guest room, quality and durability aren’t nearly as important because the mattress won’t be under the pressure of everyday use. This may mean that even if you’re spending less, you want something that feels like a great mattress for the money.

For More Details: Best Mattresses for Guest Room

Parents with teenagers – If the mattress is for a teenager, consider that they’ll likely be moving out of the house soon for college or their own apartment, and they may not need a long-lasting bed. However, if it’s for an adult, they may be more selective and require a higher-end experience.

College students – If you’re just using the bed while in college, it could be worth it to save for now. That way, when you graduate and get an apartment, you can then invest in a more luxurious mattress.

Who Shouldn’t Consider a Cheap Bed?

Heavy sleepers – Adults who are heavier will naturally put more weight and pressure on a bed. For this reason, if one or more of the sleepers weighs over 230 pounds, they’ll probably need a firmer and higher-quality mattress for maximum comfort and support.

For More Details: Best Mattresses for Heavy People

People who need advanced comfort and support – If you’re dealing with significant back pain or joint discomfort, you will likely want a more high-end mattress that has an enhanced construction to help you feel more comfortable. Cheaper beds may not come with special features like a pillow top or zoned support, which are often helpful for those with back pain or joint sensitivity.

Price Ranges for Cheap Mattresses

Under $1,000

If you’re searching for a quality mattress under 1000 dollars, you have considerable options, especially if you’re buying online. We’ve found that online mattress companies are often able to offer premium quality at about half the cost of brick-and-mortar retailers because they cut out the middleman. In fact, many online mattress stores carry premium options at just under 1,000 dollars.

With this budget, you’re not limited to just memory foam mattresses, either. For people who love memory foam beds, you can get a top-of-the-line bed in this price range. When you’re buying a foam mattress, it’s important to remember that not all foams are created equal.

They come in varying levels of density, and higher densities generally perform better than lower ones. While evaluating different brands, you’ll see numbers ranging from 2.5 to 7.0 pounds per cubic foot.

Low-density foams are not inherently awful; however, they usually contain less material, which is one of the reasons they’re cheaper. There’s less material, so these cheaper mattresses are also liable to soften quickly and lose support, shortening the life of the mattress. Low-density foam beds tend to last five years (or less), while medium to high-density foam could serve you comfortably for up to 10 years.

If you come across a cheap bed with low-density foam, don’t discount it as low-quality right away. Many higher-quality mattresses have multiple layers of foam of varying density.

They work together offering a combination of support and comfort to give you a superior night of sleep. For example, you may see a high-density foam for the base layer and a very low-density number for the top layer.

Under $500

There are some genuine mattress deals under 500 dollars out there, but you’re going to have to look a little harder and give up on a few of the luxury features.

At this inexpensive price point, you may be limited mostly to pure foam mattresses, though there are a few notable hybrid exceptions. Overall, the materials won’t be high-end, and you’ll sacrifice some durability.

For example, the coils you might find in beds less than 500 dollars may not maintain the same buoyancy and support as the years go by. The foam can also be a lower grade. Again, as we mentioned above, lower-density foams tend to degrade more quickly.

Something else that should be a major consideration is how much support a cheap mattress might provide. In addition to breaking down faster, low-density foams tend to provide less support.

For some people, this isn’t a dealbreaker. People who like the feeling of sinking into their mattress may find this beneficial, provided they don’t develop any back pain. However, back and stomach sleepers, as well as combination sleepers who switch positions throughout the night, shouldn’t compromise on support.

Still, if you’re on a tight budget but don’t want to sacrifice too much quality, you can find a gem or two that won’t break your wallet or your back.

Under $300

While you can certainly get a fair-quality product in this price range, we may not recommend this route to everyone. You’ll find that your options are more limited, and the durability of these beds might be subpar.

Like the 500-dollar range, you should find that these cheap mattresses are mostly memory foam, though again, there may be a few hybrids available. Again, the quality will not be the same as the beds that cost between 500 and 1,000 dollars. However, there are some instances where this might be your best bet.

For example, if you’re looking for a short-term bedding solution, you might not want to spend a lot of money. If you’re in a short-term lease, it’s for a college apartment, or you are extra budget-conscious, you may find yourself needing a bed that’s a lower price.

Get More Info: Mattresses Under $300 or compliment your mattress with some affordable sheets.

Under $200

Your options are going to be limited, but there should be a couple of choices. Again, you’ll be sacrificing durability and support by getting a mattress at this cheaper price, but if it’s genuinely a short-term buy, then it might make more sense than splurging on something pricier.

Like the 300-dollar range, you should find mostly memory foam beds at this price, along with a few hybrids with lower-quality materials.
One trick we should mention is that if you’re particularly budget-conscious, consider sizing down from a Queen to a Full. You may be able to save anywhere from 30 to 100 dollars by scaling down.

Our recommended Queen mattress choice is 60 inches wide by 80 inches long. Full mattresses are 54 inches wide by 75 inches long.

Related: Best King Mattress

If you’re buying the bed for a kid or teen or if you sleep alone and don’t need much space, you can save money without losing out on quality just by downsizing.

View Our Full Guide: Best Mattresses Under $200 and if you’re looking for more products, make sure to see which affordable pillow will fit into your budget.

Under $100

When looking for a mattress under 100 dollars, your options will be more narrow, but you still have some choices, including a blow-up air mattress. The best chance you have of finding something decent that isn’t an airbed is to check Craigslist or Facebook Marketplace.

If you choose this route, it’s crucial to inspect the condition of the product before committing and be careful about who you’re talking to. While most transactions tend to be positive, it’s still critical to be cautious when meeting someone from the internet.

While buying a used mattress is not for everyone, it’s not uncommon to find a mattress from a barely used guest bedroom that’s still in excellent condition, so don’t lose hope.

We also advise cleaning the bed thoroughly before sleeping on it and possibly letting it air out before putting it on your bed frame. Throw one some fresh sheets and you could enjoy a mattress that feels good as new.

While it’s fun to find inexpensive treasures online, we do recommend purchasing a new mattress for the best sleep, if your budget permits it. A quality product with fewer years on it could last you much longer and offer more bang for your buck in the long run.

Best Cheap Mattress FAQs

How Long Do Cheap Mattresses Last?

Cheaper mattresses will typically last from five to seven years. This will be dependent on factors such as if the bed is used daily or only occasionally as a guest bed, along with the sleeper’s body weight as added pressure could cause materials to wear faster.

Therefore, it is important to look for durable materials. Additionally, many budget mattresses provide warranties, and depending on what is covered, these warranties may help you replace your mattress if it wears out too quickly.

What Should I Look for In A Cheap Bed?

We mentioned Craigslist or Facebook Marketplace as options earlier. Not only can you find used mattresses on these platforms, but many local furniture stores also run specials advertising their beds at rock-bottom prices to attract a local market.

However, a good place to search for deals is on Amazon. As the world’s largest marketplace, you can find almost anything you need there, and it can often reflect some of the lowest prices. If you want to spend less than 500 dollars, Amazon may be a good place to start as well as the web pages of many other mattress manufacturers.

Find Out More: Top Rated Beds on Amazon

What Do You Think of Ikea Mattresses?

The Swedish furniture maker has a reputation for aesthetically pleasing, bare-bones furniture designed for modern spaces. While they are not best known for their bedding options, their beds range in price from 159 to 899 dollars, plus they offer a 25-year limited warranty.

Within this range, they also offer innerspring, foam, and hybrid constructions. However, before you jump in your car and head over to Ikea for a bed, it may help you to know that their mattress firmness levels are generally firm to medium-firm. This means that if you’re a side sleeper, you may not feel as comfortable, but if you’re a back or stomach sleeper, you may be able to find something you like.

Looking for more information? Read our Ikea mattress review.

Julia Forbes

Julia Forbes

Lead Product Tester

About Author

Julia is the Lead Reviewer at Sleep Advisor, specializing in testing out mattresses and sleep accessories – she’s in the right line of work, because she loves to sleep.

Stomach Sleeper

Sources

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  2. CertiPUR-US. Webpage accessed October 11, 2024.