The Best Firm Mattress – Top Picks for 2023

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While some beds offer a plush, hug-like sensation, others can keep you both cool and bolstered with a firmer feel. Firm mattresses tend to be great options for back and stomach sleepers, as they help the spine stay aligned by supporting the hips and stomach. For heavier sleepers, a firm mattress could also help you avoid bottoming out and lead to a better night’s rest.

Whatever your reason for seeking a firm sleeping surface, we’ve selected our top picks so you can find the robust support you need. Take a peek at some of the firmest mattresses on the market below.

10 Best Firm Mattresses


What Kind of Firm Mattress Are You Looking For?

We want to help you find the best firm mattress for your needs.
Click on any option below to see our picks for that category.

Our Top 10 Firm Mattresses, Reviewed

Editor's Pick

Plank Firm


  • All Foam Mattress
  • Best for Stomach Sleepers
  • Firmness Level: Dual Sided 7.5-8/10 – 9/10
  • 120-Night Trial
  • 10-Year Warranty

The Plank Firm by Brooklyn Bedding has the best of both worlds: enough firmness for sturdy support, plus some light cradling from the quilted top. 

The Plank also features a flippable design for those who want to feel the difference between firm and ultra-firm. One side increases the firmness with a slightly thinner quilted top, and the other has a thicker top layer followed by two inches of TitanFlex™ comfort foam. The Plankis great for stomach sleepers who are looking for proper spinal alignment, and it lives up to its name by being one of the firmest mattresses available today.

What makes it unique?

  • This bed takes inspiration from the flat, pragmatic sleeping surfaces used in certain parts of Asia, and makes no secret of its dedication to peak firmness.
  • For stomach sleepers, this bed is likely a dream come true, especially if you find yourself preferring less cushion.

Best Firm Cooling Mattress

WinkBed Plus


  • Hybrid Mattress
  • Great for Heavier Sleepers
  • Firmness Level: 6.5/10
  • 120-Night Trial
  • Lifetime Warranty

The WinkBed Plus is a firmer, more robust take on the original WinkBed, complete with cooling features that should combat excess heat. Like all WinkBeds, it includes a Triple Layer Heat-Disperse™ material that helps to dissipate warmth. But its 100% pure latex support layer elevates the cool factor even further, boasting an open-cell design that promotes comfortable sleeping temperatures. This layer is divided into no less than seven support zones to maximize responsiveness and healthy alignment.

Because it was made for sleepers who weigh around 250 pounds or more, the WinkBed Plus may feel overly firm to petite people (or just right if you’re looking for a supremely bolstered bed).

What’s great about it?

  • Its signature firmness is a testament to its durable materials—repeated testing by the brand has shown that the WinkBed Plus has an impressive ability to resist sagging over time.

Best Firm Mattress for Side Sleepers

Helix Dawn Luxe


  • Hybrid Mattress
  • Best for Side Sleepers
  • Firmness Level: 7.5-9.5/10
  • 100-Night Trial
  • 15-Years Warranty

Side sleepers and heavier individuals should enjoy the firmness of this Helix mattress, which is a taller, upgraded version of Helix’s Dawn model. The bed has three foam layers on top of an impressive coil unit with more than a thousand wrapped coils. Those coils should feel softer under your shoulders—a crucial pressure point for side sleepers—and firmer under your hips.

 The Helix Dawn Luxe comes with a TENCEL™ or GlacioTex cooling cover. Both options enhance the airflow, pulling the heat away from your body to prevent overheating.

What stands out?

  • The foams in this Helix mattress are CertiPUR-US® certified as free of harmful chemicals.
  • The Helix Dawn Luxe is also suitable for couples because it has good edge support and motion isolation.

Best Firm Luxury Mattress

Nolah Evolution


  • Hybrid Mattress
  • Best for All Sleep Positions
  • Firmness Level: 5/10 (Plush), 6-7/10 (Luxury Firm), 8/10 (Firm)
  • 120-Night Trial
  • Lifetime Warranty

The Nolah Evolution features multiple firmness levels to accommodate different body types and sleep positions. The Luxury Firm model, in particular, embodies a cozy compromise between firmness and pressure relief. It’s hard enough to ensure proper body alignments, but still retains some softness to help with pressure buildup (a big concern for side and back sleepers).

Nolah’s Evolution mattress has an impressive design that includes high-quality proprietary materials, such as AirFoamICE™ foam with infused graphite for cooling, and HDMax™️ Tri-Zone™️ coils for targeted support where your spine needs it most.

What else should you know?

  • The Evolution’s advanced cooling features should be helpful if you’re prone to overheating when you sleep.
  • The reinforced perimeter coils are great for couples. This top-notch edge support allows both partners to spread out across the bed without feeling like they’re losing firmness at its borders.

Best Firm Mattress for Pressure Relief



  • Memory Foam Mattress
  • Best for Back and Side Sleepers
  • Firmness Level: 6.5/10
  • 365-Night Trial
  • Forever Warranty

If you enjoy the give of traditional memory foam but feel like you sink in deeper than you’d like, Nectar could be for you. Nectar uses a combination of three kinds of foam to provide the nice cradle many sleepers love while preserving a firm foundation. Its support and pressure-point relief capabilities allow it to accommodate a variety of sleeping positions, all without users getting “stuck” or overheating. 

Thanks to its generous trial period and reasonable price, the Nectar was also made to suit most budgets.

What stands out?

  • This Nectar model has one firmness level that’s suitable for most sleeping positions, making this bed a great match for most sleepers.
  • Nectar performs exceptionally well in important preference-based features as well, including motion isolation and edge support.

Best Firm Memory Foam Mattress

Bear Original


  • Memory Foam Mattress
  • Best for Side and Back Sleepers
  • Firmness Level: 6.5/10
  • 120-Night Trial
  • Lifetime Warranty

If you want the gentle cushioning of memory foam coupled with firm support, consider the Bear Original. This memory foam mattress features the best qualities of this premium foam: contouring, pressure relief, and motion isolation. However, the Bear also has a firmer feel that should appeal to sleepers who want this feature.

The Bear’s memory foam layer includes cooling graphite gel to keep the material from becoming too warm, which is a common memory-foam drawback. The middle layer is a responsive transition foam, easing the sleeper into the firm base while delivering added support. The base’s high-density foam helps to keep the body level while contributing to the bed’s firm feel.

What stands out?

  • Unique to the Bear brand is the use of Celliant®, a performance textile that can reportedly improve performance recovery for active individuals.

Best Firm Mattress for Couples

Emma CliMax


  • Hybrid Mattress
  • Best for Back and Stomach Sleepers
  • Firmness Level: 7.5/10
  • 365-Night Trial
  • 10-Year Warranty

The Emma CliMax is a hybrid mattress that not only offers sleepers a firmer feel, but also comes with features that make it a fantastic match for many couples.

Motion isolation is often a priority for sleeping partners, as it helps reduce disturbances throughout the night if one person is a lighter sleeper. The CliMax handily reduces the transfer of motion so you’re less likely to notice your partner’s movements.

The CliMax’s edge support enables sleepers to feel well-supported along the sides. A mattress with good edge support also lets you use more surface space, which is ideal if you share a bed.

What stands out?

  • The Emma CliMax comes with great edge support and motion isolation, both of which are important for most couples.

Best Firm Hybrid Mattress

Saatva Classic


  • Memory Foam and Coils Hybrid Mattress
  • Best for Back and Stomach Sleepers
  • Firmness Level: 8/10
  • 365-Night Trial
  • Lifetime Warranty

Saatva’s Firm model is a hybrid bed that features a coil-on-coil construction with firmer foams in its comfort layers. Sleepers should feel like they’re floating on top of the mattress rather than sinking into it, and the resulting spinal alignment should be ideal for many back and stomach sleepers.

The innerspring design includes individually wrapped springs on top of an interconnected coil base. While the first layer of coils helps the mattress contour to your body, the base prevents sagging and boosts support. The steel in the base coils has also been tempered to increase their durability.

Why is it special?

  • The Saatva has premium features, including extra support for the lumbar region, dual perimeter edge support, and a cover made with organic cotton.
  • As a convenient bonus, Saatva offers free White Glove Delivery and mattress removal.

Best Firm Mattress for Heavy People

Titan Plus


  • Hybrid Mattress
  • Best for Side, Back, and Stomach Sleepers
  • Firmness Level: 6.5-7/10
  • 120-Night Trial
  • 10-Year Warranty

Heavier sleepers often need firmer beds to prevent sinkage and keep their spines in good alignment. Not only does the Titan Plus feature a firmer feel, but the mattress is specially designed for larger sleepers. 

This hybrid model features a quilted pillow top with an inch of gel memory foam inside to provide pressure relief as you lie on the bed. The Titan Plus also contains premium proprietary materials, such as TitanFlex™ foam for a responsive surface and close to 1,000 TitanCaliber™ coils for specialized support. At the base is a two-inch thick high-density foam that gives the mattress durability and stability while providing added support to the coil unit.

What makes it special?

  • Heavier sleepers seeking quality support should love the industrial-strength coils in the Titan Plus. Additionally, these springs are individually wrapped in fabric to minimize motion transfer.
  • The coils should deliver added airflow for anyone prone to overheating during the night.

Best Firm Mattress for Combination Sleepers

Layla® Hybrid


  • Flippable Hybrid Mattress
  • Best for Back, Side, and Stomach Sleepers
  • Firmness Level: 4/10 or 7/10
  • 120-Night Trial
  • 10-Year Warranty

Maybe you prize firmness in a bed but still want to preserve some freedom of choice around how it feels. Maybe you shift positions throughout the night and need to feel supported in every one of them. If so, the Layla® Hybrid has your back (and side, and stomach).

This hybrid mattress is easily flippable, with a firmer side and a softer side to suit your mood. It differs from the original Layla® Memory Foam mattress in its inclusion of a coil unit, which gives the bed a more classic innerspring feel while preserving its impressive motion isolation and boosting its responsiveness.

What stands out?

  • The copper-infused foam on both sides of the mattress provides an extra cooling boost as well as antimicrobial benefits.
  • The breathable cover comes with handles to make flipping the Layla® Hybrid a cinch.

Firm Mattress Benefits

Firm mattresses are suitable for sleepers who may sink into the middle layers of softer mattresses and miss out on all the contouring that the upper layers should offer. When you sink too far into a mattress, or “bottom out”, you may experience pain from the curve in your spine and a lack of support. Firmer beds come with unique benefits that could create a positive change in sleeping habits.

  • They are more comfortable for some

While it may seem like you can never have too much cushioning, too much of a good thing can hurt you. Firmer mattresses offer the perfect amount of support for the right type of sleeper. Those who experience lower back pain, neck stiffness, or joint issues could benefit, but those who struggle with shoulder and hip pain from side sleeping may want a softer model.

Read Our Full Guide: Best Mattresses for Back Pain

  • Deeper rest

You would never be able to get proper rest if your mattress is overly soft or if it’s sagging in certain sleep positions, such as on the stomach or back. With this in mind, a proper bed with the necessary amount of firmness will comprehensively align your spine, inducing a state of great relaxation.

  • Excellent alignment

If there is one thing that you should consider when picking a mattress, it’s spinal alignment. A firm bed can significantly help with this if used for the proper positions. Good spinal alignment is a vital component of preventing back pain.

  • Proper distribution of weight

A firm model offers splendid overall weight distribution, which can alleviate a lot of pressure points between the body and the bed.

Types of Firm Mattresses

Shoppers have their pick of different mattress types when searching for a firm mattress.

Firm Innerspring Mattresses

The innerspring mattress is the oldest, most traditional type on the market. Innerspring beds typically contain an interconnected coil unit and a thin layer of cushioning on top. Because of their construction, these beds are inherently firm already since they don’t have much cushioning to them.

Firm Hybrid Mattresses

A hybrid mattress contains several foam layers on top of an innerspring unit, though some include additional foam at the base. While traditional innerspring beds have minimal cushioning, hybrids input softer, thicker comfort layers on top. The firmness of a hybrid can vary depending on the manufacturer’s design, though you should be able to find a firm hybrid bed.

Firm Latex Mattresses

Latex mattresses contain latex foam that’s either natural, synthetic, or blended. They may also contain other foams or coils in their construction. Latex mattresses are known for being an eco-friendly alternative that offers great bounce and cooling. Certain latex beds are firmer than others depending on the design.

Firm Foam Mattresses

Foam beds include poly foam and memory foam. The firmness of these foams depends on the manufacturer’s design, as well as where the material is located in the mattress. Many foam beds contain softer memory foam on top with dense poly foam at the base. Companies produce foam mattresses in varying firmness levels.

Who Should Sleep on a Firm Mattress?

One of the first things that you want to consider is what kind of sleepers benefit the most from a good firm option. If you usually sleep on your back or your stomach – you may fall into that category. At the same time, if you are heavier in weight or sleep hot at night, a firm mattress can allow you to sleep more on top of the layers rather than in them.

Back Sleepers

Those looking for the best mattresses for back sleepers require firm, elevated support in the lower back region. This keeps your spine in proper alignment, preventing sagging in the mattress that may lead to lower back pain.

Stomach Sleepers

Stomach sleepers also benefit from a hard mattress for reasons that are quite similar. If you prefer belly sleeping, you should consider a unit that will prevent your pelvis from sinking right into it in order to prevent poor spine alignment.

Hot Sleepers

Hot sleepers may also find a great fit with harder beds. A firmer mattress will keep you on top of the bed rather than feeling like you’re inside it. As a result, this should help you feel cooler and less confined. This, along with built-in cooling features, could make a significant difference for people prone to overheating at night.

Heavyweight Sleepers

Heavier sleepers are typically better suited for firmer beds with highly-supportive layers. Dense support layers are often helpful in preventing larger sleepers from bottoming out and hindering their spinal alignment.

Who Shouldn’t Sleep on a Firm Mattress?

Conversely, some people shouldn’t get a hard bed because they may feel more discomfort on them.

Side Sleepers

Side sleepers probably wouldn’t appreciate the extra firmness. While sleeping on your side, you exert a lot more pressure on a concentrated surface. If the bed doesn’t contour your body and sink appropriately, you can start experiencing pain in your shoulders and lower back.

Lightweight Sleepers

People who are lighter in weight (130 pounds or less) should also stay away from hard beds. Lightweight sleepers wouldn’t be able to exert enough pressure on the bed to sink and relieve their pressure points, which could end up causing more discomfort throughout the night.

Illustration of a Person Sleeping on Their Side on a Firm Mattress

What to Consider When Buying a Firm Bed

As you search online, there are a few guidelines you can use to help find something you will be comfortable with for years to come. 


ideal range for side, back and stomach sleepers

There is a wide range of mattress firmness levels. We’ve decided to focus on those who score on the higher end of the scale.

Typically, for a mattress to be above the average, it has to be medium-firm, firm, and extra firm. These all have different purposes.

For instance, medium-firm beds are preferred by the vast majority of sleepers. Firm ones would feel slightly tougher in comparison, and the firmest ones are very sturdy.

Medium-firm beds are typically great for back sleepers while extra-firm ones can be used by stomach sleepers or heavyweight sleepers. The added firmness can help guarantee the necessary support.


There are different types of materials that you can go for when shopping for a new bed. The four most common mattress types are memory foam, latex, hybrid, and innerspring. Many companies offer varying firmness levels in different types of beds, but some designs are naturally going to be firmer because of the specific materials. 

If you are a fan of memory foam mattresses, you could have a harder time finding a firm, let alone an extra firm bed. This is due to the natural properties of the material.

On the other hand, innerspring and latex materials are generally more responsive, and they can make it easier for the mattress to be firm. They are the predominant materials for most extra-firm solutions just for that reason.

Interested in exploring further? Follow our guide for different types of mattress materials.

all types of mattresses illustration

Edge Support

Good edge support allows you to feel equally supported along the perimeter, a beneficial feature for couples or anyone who wants more surface space use. Sturdy edge support also allows you to feel comfortable if you regularly sit on the side of your bed to change or put on shoes. 

The good news here is that firmer beds tend to perform well for edge support. In some cases, couples may be able to just get a bigger mattress if they need more space, but with a firmer mattress, you shouldn’t have to worry about feeling supported on the sides.

Body Weight

Your body weight will also be a factor in deciding whether a firmer bed is right for you. Typically, firm mattresses are recommended for the heaviest sleepers because they can help prevent them from bottoming out through the layers. Some average-weight sleepers may enjoy firm beds if they regularly lie on their stomachs or want firmer support in the back sleeping posture. 

On the flip side, lightweight individuals won’t like these beds because they’re too rigid to provide them with any pressure relief. A lightweight stomach sleeper may do okay on a medium-firm bed, though, and they can test this out during the at-home trial period.

Temperature Regulation

Temperature regulation is one of the most commonly underestimated characteristics and also one of the most important ones for many people. The airflow that your mattress allows largely determines the overall temperature of the unit.

The last thing you’d want is to wake up sweating through the night because you’ve picked a unit that retains a substantial amount of heat. Overall, a cooler bed is attributed to better sleep and proper rest. Innerspring, hybrid, and latex mattresses sleep the coolest. However, many companies use cooling gels to mitigate heat in memory foam beds as well.

The good news for hot sleepers is that the firmer feel allows you to be more on top of the mattress as opposed to in it. As a result, this should further help with temperature control.

View Our Full Guide: Best Cooling Mattresses

Animated Gif of Latex Mattress Breathability

Motion Isolation

Motion isolation refers to the bed’s ability to keep the movement from transferring across the bed. This is often another big concern for couples who want to avoid being disturbed by the other person’s movements. Memory foam beds containing all-foam layers usually perform best. Hybrids may have some motion transfer, but most of them have pocketed coils to manage this. Additionally, hybrid models with memory foam on top will further help with motion isolation. Innerspring and latex beds typically provide the least amount of motion isolation.

Pressure Relief

Pressure relief is the bed’s ability to alleviate discomfort in common pressure points like the hips and shoulders. Mattresses typically provide this through comfort layers and materials like memory foam and latex that are designed to cradle the sleeper to melt away pressure build-up. Because firmer beds don’t allow you to sink in as much, they may not provide as much pressure relief. However, medium-firm beds are often a great solution because they can still deliver good pressure relief.


Sagging in firmer mattresses could be a serious issue for sleepers. In certain situations, excessive sagging is caused by the low quality of the material. That’s why we recommend making no compromises if you’re going to buy a firm bed.

Old mattresses, however, may no longer have the material or structural integrity to deliver the necessary amount of support. Keep in mind that the average useful lifespan for the majority of beds will range between 7 and ten years. Of course, there are a lot of factors that might affect and alter this such as usage, body type, and maintenance.

Get More Info: 7 Signs You're Sleeping On a Bad Mattress


Your budget will also factor into your decision on which bed to get. The materials used in the mattress and whether they’re good quality will impact the price.

Innerspring beds, which are usually one of the firmness types, are also some of the cheapest to get. Latex is another style that can offer good firmness, but because it’s a more top-of-the-line material, it will cost more. This is especially true for all-natural latex beds.

Hybrids are another mattress type that can offer substantial firmness depending on the model, but these can be more expensive due to their advanced design. Firmer memory foam mattresses may be a higher investment, especially if the foam contains cooling properties too.

Something to remember, though, is that online shopping is a great way to save on premium mattresses. The direct-to-consumer sales model cuts out middle-men costs so shoppers don’t have to pay as much as they might in-store.

How to Make a Mattress Firmer

If you want to make your mattress firmer without investing in a whole new bed, you can get creative—and save money—by utilizing these tips and accessories.

Change Your Frame

Altering the support structure around your mattress can make a big difference in its feel. You might need a new bed frame with more slats or base materials beneath the bottom of the mattress, or you could even try laying your mattress on the floor.

Change Your Foundation

If you’ve been using a box spring or a similar foundation, try replacing it. Like mattresses, these foundations can wear out and sag over time.

Investigate Why Your Mattress May Have Softened

If your mattress started out firmer than it is now, then you may be able to regain some of its former feel. You could check its layers to see if any of them are underperforming, and potentially replace them if the bed allows for it.

You might also try airing out your mattress in an effort to rid it of absorbed moisture (and any accumulated germs).

Get Firm Pillows

Firm pillows could help compensate for the pressure points that sink into your current mattress. For example, if you’re a stomach sleeper and your pelvis dips too far, causing back problems, try placing a pillow under your hips to level out your spine.

Use a Firm Mattress Topper

Firm mattress toppers are an excellent way to adjust your bed’s feel for hundreds of dollars less than the cost of a new mattress. Toppers are usually available in standard mattress sizes to fit the dimensions of your bed. To create a harder surface, look for toppers that are listed specifically as firm.

Firm Mattress FAQs

What's the firmest type of mattress?

Latex mattresses and innerspring mattresses tend to feel firmer than other types. However, any type of mattress can be constructed for standout firmness, including memory foam models. The firmest mattresses don’t have plush tops or especially soft comfort layers. Rather, they prioritize robust support materials that keep the body from sinking into the bed.

What is a medium-firm mattress?

The best medium-firm mattresses provide a good balance of pressure relief and support to most sleepers. You want a bed that is soft enough to cushion the places where the body tends to develop pressure when lying down, but you also want a bed with enough support in place to keep your weight resting evenly. This blend is not the same for everyone or every sleeping position, but medium-firm tends to accommodate most sleepers in most positions.

Mattress manufacturers looking to capture the largest market for their brand aim for this firmness because it tends to be the most versatile feel across the largest population of body types.

You should also keep in mind that not every sleeper will experience a bed in the same way, and what feels medium-firm for one person might feel firmer to someone lighter than average. Likewise, someone significantly heavier might experience a medium-firm bed as softer.

How good is a firm mattress for back pain?

A firm mattress is great for those who have back pain because it can help keep the spine in a healthy, neutral posture. Poor back posture during sleep can cause or worsen back pain, so good support is vital for this.  

What is the best firm mattress?

The best firm mattress depends on individual preference. For some, the extra-firm types are ideal while others may feel most comfortable on a medium-firm option. You’ll also have to consider other important features the bed provides, such as materials, cooling, edge support, motion isolation, and bounce. 

What is the difference between firmness and support?

The firmness of a mattress refers to how soft or hard it feels when you lie down, whereas support refers to the bed’s ability to keep your spine in optimal alignment. Firmness may be able to enhance the bed’s overall ability to keep you supported, but ultimately, these are two different performance features.


As you can see, there are many factors that you should account for when purchasing a firm mattress. By doing so, you’re placing yourself in a better position to find a truly great mattress that meets your needs.

Your mattress is one of the most critical requirements for a good night’s sleep. Make sure that you’re aware of the specifications so that you can conveniently make an informed and adequate decision based on your sleeping patterns, preferences, and requirements.

Sources and References:

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