9 Highest Rated Memory Foam Beds You Can Buy in 2018

Shopping for a new bed can be exciting but also downright annoying. You will agree with me when I say, we all want only the highest quality products for our money.

If you have narrowed your choice of mattress type and material to memory foam, rest assured that most people prefer it over any other.

In this roundup and buying guide, we have tested and selected nine best rated memory foam mattresses for 2018. We evaluated all products based on material quality, comfort, support, cooling and company reputation. We also didn’t include any option that scored below 8.0 (out of 10). So, whichever you pick from our list, you can rest assured that your sleep will improve and that it will serve you well for many years.

If you are looking for even more options, we have a new and updated list of best mattress brands for 2018. But if your mind is set on this fantastic type, read on, and I’m sure you will find one that suits your sleep preference.

Memory Foam Mattress Reviews – Best By Type

Nectar – Exceptional Value

Highlights:

  • CertiPUR-US® Certified
  • OEKO-TEX® Certified
  • 365-Day Trial
  • Forever Warranty
  • Assembled in the USA

Nectar offers exceptional value as a memory foam mattress. While it incorporates the reasons we love traditional memory foam, such as great pressure relief and deep contouring, it has breathability and cooling elements, too.

Its cover has a soft, almost silky feel on top and the Tencel fabric dissolves moisture and heat by wicking it away. Two layers of gel memory foam serve cooling and comfort functions.

Why is it special? Closer to a budget price, Nectar has features and materials that feel higher-end. It is generously backed by a lifetime warranty and 365-day trial period.

Having an entire year to try out a bed is almost unheard of and Nectar gives sleepers plenty of time to adjust to the bed and see if it is a perfect fit. In addition, it works with every type of frame.

For even more savings, use our discount code “SLEEPADVISOR125” to take $125 off during checkout!

Layla – Pressure Relief

Highlights:

  • Double-Sided (Soft and Firm)
  • CertiPUR-US® Certified
  • 120-Night Trial
  • Lifetime Guarantee
  • Homeless Shelter Partnership
  • Made in the USA

The Layla Mattress is our pick for pressure relief. It is double-sided with medium-soft and firm comfort levels, meaning that you can adjust the firmness depending on your personal preference. However, the medium-soft side will give you a melting-into-the-bed sensation that many people like about memory foam.

What makes it unique? Layla’s memory layer is infused with copper, which is a newer innovation in the industry. Copper is a good conductor of heat that draws it out and away from the area closest to sleepers.

Since traditional memory foam is known to sleep warm, the copper provides a successful solution to common heat problems. The layer underneath the copper infusion is Air Flow foam, which has an egg crate design to help with airflow, also aiding with cooling.

There is a lot of buzz about the additional health benefits that the copper in Layla may provide. We recommend that you conduct independent research on this topic since we are not science experts. However, it is antimicrobial and creates an all-around pressure-relieving night!

The Casper – All Sleeping Positions

Highlights:

  • CertiPUR-US® Certified
  • 100-Night Trial
  • 10-Year Warranty
  • Designed and Assembled in the USA

Casper is one of the biggest brands in the bed-in-a-box industry. Although their original model has 1.5-inches of memory foam, we believe this amount works to its advantage in combination with its medium firmness when it comes to catering to all types of sleeping positions.

What stands out? Casper has recently updated their original model to include a Zoned Support™ layer. The brand strives to create a balance between alignment and comfort, and their newest version does just that.

In their Zoned Support™ layer, they use a softer foam under the shoulders for even better pressure relief. There is a firmer foam around the hip and core region in order to support heavier weight concentrations and keep the spine aligned.

An open-cell design and placing the memory layer under the top layer helps to keep sleepers as cool as they are comfortable. This is a quick-responding option, which is great if you want pressure relief without the slow response. It makes it even easier to move around.

Loom & Leaf – Luxury Look & Feel

Highlights:

  • Organic Cotton Covering
  • CertiPUR-US® Certified
  • 120-Day Trial
  • 15-Year Warranty
  • Made in the USA

Half the price of comparable luxury mattresses, Loom & Leaf by Saatva presents a high-end option for much less than in-store brands. From its organic cotton cover to a woven thistle flame retardant and eco-friendly foams, the brand has incorporated natural materials into its design, giving it a rich feel. Handles on the sides are an extremely nice touch that makes the bed easier to move.

Why is it special? In addition to its luxury feel, it has a special Spinal Zone Gel layer under the quilted cover to give the spine extra support and cooling, and gel is swirled into its top memory foam layer. We also noticed that it has exceptional edge support for a foam bed.

This is a great fit for people who like enjoy a slower-responding feel and want additional support. While it comes in two firmness levels, Relaxed Firm and Firm, it is especially good for back and stomach sleepers because it is slightly firmer than other beds we have tested and it has the Spinal Zone Gel layer.

Unlike the other beds on this list, it is not compressed and shipped in a box. Instead, Loom & Leaf provides Free White Glove Delivery – and free mattress removal.

Muse – Amazing Cooling

Highlights:

  • CertiPUR-US® Certified
  • 120-Night Trial
  • 10-Year Warranty
  • Made in the USA

Muse by ViscoSoft uses high-performance materials and memory foam to create cooling and contouring all night. There is a slow response and hug to the medium firmness option, and soft and firm options are also available.

What makes it unique? This brand made a concerted effort to provide top-of-the-line cooling solutions, and their cover impressed us by how cool it is to the touch. Since traditional memory foam can overheat, Muse is great news for people who like the feel of memory foam but always find it too hot.

The attractive cover, which can be unzipped and washed, is made from temperature control fibers that wick away heat. Their dense foam has cooling gel in it to further regulate heat.

Because of its dense foam core, we feel that it will work well with most body weights without the risk of bottoming out. It is also an excellent solution for light sleepers who are easily disturbed by motion, as it has a high level of motion isolation.

Alexander Signature Series® – Firm Feel

Highlights:

  • CertiPUR-US® Certified
  • 100-Night Trial
  • Lifetime Comfort Guarantee
  • Lifetime Warranty
  • Made in the USA

The Alexander Signature Series® by Nest Bedding is a luxury bed-in-a-box model. If you are looking for a memory bed with a firmer feel and less sinkage, their Luxury Firm option strikes a balance of strong support and pressure relief. There are handles on the side to reposition the bed with ease.

The Luxury Firm may be ideal for stomach sleepers because they need extra support to keep their hips from sinking in and causing their backs to bow. This model also works well for back sleepers who prefer a firmer feel, although side sleepers may find their Medium option more conducive to their pressure relief needs.

What stands out? In addition to its luxurious look and feel, Alexander Signature Series® has four high-quality layers inside the bed. It has a Thermic Phase Change Cooling Fabric that helps regulate temperature.

Nest Bedding offers a Lifetime Comfort Guarantee. This means that if you want a different firmness or size after the initial trial period, you can purchase a new bed for half price. All of their mattresses are made to order.

Amerisleep AS3 – Plant-Based

Highlights:

  • CertiPUR-US® Certified
  • 100-Night Trial
  • 20-Year Warranty
  • Made in the USA

Amerisleep has a range of mattresses with different firmness levels and the AS3 is their medium firmness option. Because this is a medium firmness, most individuals will find it comfortable and it is a good fit for combination sleepers.

While there is a slow-responding memory layer, it is quicker than some brands we have seen and the bed is easy to move around on.

Why is it special? The foam in the bed is more eco-friendly because plants are substituted for some petroleum that is typically used to create foam. Amerisleep is proud to share that their process does not produce air pollution and it meets the standards of the Clean Air Act.

Amerisleep has taken several steps to help their bed sleep cooler. They have included Bio-Pur™ foam and open-cell structures that help with heat dissipation and further breathability.

In addition, the cover is made with Celliant®. This material takes heat from the body and turns it into infrared. There may be other additional advantages to using Celliant®, however, we recommend conducting your own research on this topic, as we are not experts on it.

Bear Mattress – Athletes & Active Folks

Highlights:

  • CertiPUR-US® Certified
  • 100-Night Trial
  • 10-Year Warranty
  • Children’s Charity Initiative
  • Made in the USA

While Bear Mattress has plenty of benefits for all individuals, it is our pick for athletes and athletic folks because it has a few benefits that work especially well for them.

It has less of a deep contouring, slow-responding memory foam feel while keeping the pressure relief associated with that style of bed. Even though there is a memory layer in the bed, it still has bounce, which some people miss in traditional memory beds. The top memory layer is slow to respond but quicker than other a few other beds on this list.

What makes it unique? A combination of graphite gel in its memory foam and Celliant® technology in its cover keeps sleepers from overheating. The brand says Celliant® technology can improve tissue oxygen levels, but we encourage you to research this on your own, as we are not experts in the science behind it.

In addition, Bear gives back to kids and helps them with the means to play sports. So far, the company has donated to every State and over four million kids have been helped.

Ultimate Dreams Supreme 12″ Gel Memory Foam – Budget Choice

Highlights:

  • CertiPUR-US® Certified
  • OEKO-TEX® Certified
  • 120-Night Trial
  • 10-Year Warranty
  • Made in the USA

Ultimate Dreams Supreme 12″ Gel Memory Foam is made by Dreamfoam, a brand by Brooklyn Bedding. As the manufacturer owns their factory, they can produce high-quality budget products that companies with middlemen and outsourced materials and labor need to charge more in order to produce.

What stands out? Ultimate Dreams Supreme has the traditional feel you would expect memory foam to have. There are four total inches of memory materials that provide deeper contouring and there is less bounce.

Ultimate Dreams Supreme has a few qualities that make this a clear standout budget option.

It does a good job of supporting and relieving pressure for nearly every sleep position. Dreamfoam has also included gel in the memory foam to negate the heat traditional beds tend to trap. It is an all-around solid option that is conveniently compressed in a box and delivered to your door.

Why Memory Foam?

A Brief History

Memory Foam is polyurethane combined with other chemicals. Those additional chemicals add to the viscosity and density of the end product. You may see it referred to in some cases as viscoelastic polyurethane foam. The origins of this material can be traced back to 1966 when NASA developed it.

The original intention was for this material to be used for aircraft cushions, but it was quickly discovered that it had potential far beyond that application. It was released to the public domain in the 1980s, and it has gradually gained in popularity since that time. It has been used in medical applications for some time and has more recently – thanks to reductions in cost – become a material that is used in a range of home products like mattresses.

Read more about how memory foam works here.

A Unique Memory Foam Feel

This amazing material has a unique and very recognizable feel. It hugs and contours to your body as you compress it, providing exceptional pressure relief and support.

The material will gradually shape to match the outline of your body, meaning the mattress is essentially customized for your needs each time you lay down. When you get up, the material will regain its original shape quite quickly, readying itself for the next use.

side view of a woman laying on memory foam

The other feature which can be advantageous in the mattress application is the motion isolation that it offers. Motion isolation means there is a very little transfer of energy from one side of the mattress to the other. If your partner is tossing and turning in the night, for instance, you are unlikely to feel much of anything as you sleep. This is not a feature that can be claimed by a traditional spring mattress, and it is a big part of its popularity.

Viscoelastic properties are what makes it unique, and it’s worth noting that poly foam without viscoelastic properties is not a memory foam.

A Note on Cooling and Response

The main problem people complain about is slow responsiveness and heat retention.

Response means how quickly a material recovers when compressed. Memory Foam has a very slow recovery rate and takes a few seconds to return to original shape. This also means the material will contour to your body better. But, the slower response is also something many people find as negative, so it’s down to personal preference.

foam pressure response
Heat retention is a problem that earlier versions of foam struggled with. The material hugs your body, creating hotspots, and it can quickly become a nightmare, especially in summer days. Advanced gel covers and open cell structure fixed the heat issue to a degree but don’t expect foam to sleep as cool as coil or latex.

Do you need a “colder” option? Read our full guide with the best cooling mattress picks.

heat retention level graphic for different bed types
Heat Retention Graphic - How cool or hot each type of mattress sleeps.

Is This the Right Material and Type of Mattress for You?

It’s not for you if

  • You Sleep Too Hot – A significant issue with this material is that it sleeps hot, even with cooling gel. If you tend to sweat or you are in a warm climate, you might want to consider other options.
  • You are a Stomach Sleeper – If you prefer to sleep on your belly, your torso will create pressure points, and your overall sleep experience will suffer. You will need a firmer surface for this position, so you do not sink too deep.

It is for you if

  • You are suffering from back pain – For anyone suffering from back ache, you will need a material that conforms to your body and provides pressure relief. Memory-foam is perfect for this, and it’s the most recommended for back pain.
  • You love sleeping on your side or back – Contouring and hug are especially important for side sleepers as firm materials that do not conform tend to create pressure points on your shoulder and hip joints.
  • You are a bit heavier – Foam is perfect if you are a heavier person because you will need that extra pressure point support and contouring.

Still not sure? Here is our complete guide “How to Choose a Mattress in 5 Easy Steps“.

What Makes the Highest Quality Memory Foam?

During your research you will encounter products priced at $200 and those at $2000, so obviously there is a difference. Let’s take a look at the most important factors that determine if the quality of this amazing material.

  • Density

The density represents how much foam is built in each layer. Thicker does not equal better density too. Higher density will give you longer lifespan for your new bed. It also means that it will be much hotter to sleep on. You will most likely encounter the term PCF (pounds per cubic foot) and here are the three common levels of density:

  • Low – 3.5 PCF or below

  • Medium – 3.5-5.0 (Golden range to look for)

  • High – 5.0 or above

What do those numbers mean? They refer to the actual weight of the product, with a heavier weight representing a denser material. The weights are measured per cubic foot, so a mattress with a rating of four pounds indicates that one cubic foot of the material used would weight four pounds. As you would expect, heavier products are going to be more expensive than lighter options, but it also means that they offer better support and are more durable.

  • Thickness

The thickness of the layers is an important factor when determining sleep quality. It has much to do with the manufacturer and a mattress in general. It’s recommended that there is at least 4”, but it can be split into two comfort layers.

Example showing a mattress structure (top to bottom) - 2x2" Memory foam and 5.5" support foam

Example showing a mattress structure (top to bottom) – 2×2″ Memory foam and 5.5″ support foam

  • Firmness

The firmness is highly correlated to the weight that has been used. Heavier mattresses are going to be firmer and more supportive, while lighter versions will be softer. Of course, there will be some variation in firmness from model to model even when comparing weights, so check on the stated firmness of any mattress before making a purchase. To measure firmness specifically, a scale known as ILD (indentation load deflection) can be used. On this scale, a higher number like 12 or 13, is going to be firmer than an 8 or 9.

We use a scale of 1-10 (ten being the most firm) so with the products we recommend you will also have firmness recommendation along with it. So no complicated calculations needed. Check our firmness guide here.

  • Lifespan & Durability

The lifespan that you should expect is going to have a lot to do with the quality of the product you purchase. Naturally, spending more money on a high-end mattress is going to return you a better product, which can be expected to hold up for a longer period. In general terms, you should expect to get somewhere in the range of seven to ten years of quality performance from a memory foam bed.

  • Warranties

As was the case with lifespan, better products will give you a longer warranty. Some of the high-end options on the market will offer you 20 years of coverage, while less-expensive models only come with 5 years. Usually, the quality of a mattress will be directly related to the warranty which is offered, but it’s not always the case.

  • Off-Gassing and Chemicals

Off gassing is one of the leading complaints. A new one is going to need to get rid of its chemical smell at first, which is a process known as off gassing. This usually only lasts for a short period, but it can put some people off when they are just getting started on their new mattress. If you do decide to buy one, it is important to understand that off gassing is likely to be part of the process.

  • Good for Romance?

You may be concerned about more than just sleeping when it comes to a new bed. If you are planning a romantic evening, the difficulty of moving around on this type of mattress is often noted as a negative, while the quiet nature of memory foam can be positive in some circumstances. Want more? Check our favorite couple’s beds and see the individual reviews.

Types of Memory Foam

As mentioned previously, there are many polyurethane foams around, but not all of them are “memory.” Over the years, companies have experimented with this material and came up with some variations with a different hug, contour, cooling, sinkage levels and durability. While there are many others, here are the three most common types you will see on the market.

Traditional

This is the most common and the least responsive derivation of memory foam. It’s that traditional hug and contour feel we all know and many of us love. Typical density for this type is 4.0 – 6.0 PCF. Here are some of the highlights:

  • Designed to enhance circulation and relieve stress on your joints
  • Good for side sleepers
  • Sleeps very hot

Open Cell

To battle heat retention, manufacturers came up with a solution in terms of open-cell foam. While it still provides similar and familiar feel, small air pockets provide a much cooler sleeping experience and better response time.

  • Better cooling
  • Still provides similar feel as the traditional type
  • Faster response
hand pressing foam

Gel Foam

This is the most popular variation you will see even on mid-grade mattresses these days. This gel is usually infused during the manufacturing process and evenly spread across the entire surface, or it can be incorporated as tiny beads or liquid.

Example showing gel foam mattress structure (top to bottom) – Cooling gel, Memory foam, Transition layer, High density foam

Gel solved the biggest memory foam issue, heat retention by evenly dispensing the heat instead of creating hot pockets. Don’t get fooled by low ticket products advertising gel foam mattresses as these just won’t do the trick. If you pick a quality product though, you can expect a much cooler experience than on a traditional one. Here are a few tips to pick a good product.

  • Go with liquid gel if you can because it provides better cooling compared to beads
  • Don’t go with a density lower than PCF 3.0. It’s an indication of the lower quality product.
  • Opt for thinner, more breathable covers

Plant Based or Eco Foam

Plant-based or natural memory foam mattresses became some of the most popular on the market. The reason is a more environmentally friendly process and replacement of petroleum-based substances with bamboo, tea, soy or Aloe Vera. These materials are much better at heat distribution and provide much needed joint pain relief and better motion isolation.

  • No odors and off-gassing
  • Natural materials
  • Good for allergies
  • Better heat distribution and motion isolation
  • More expensive than traditional models

Memory Foam vs. Other Materials and Types

Innerspring

Coil (innerspring or coil-on-coil) provide more airflow and cooling than almost any other type. Nowadays, many products include a layer of memory foam on top for extra comfort. The combination of two results in improved lifespan, cooling and you still get that familiar foam feel. One such example is luxury mattress from Saatva, a sister company of our Editor’s choice here, Loom & Leaf.

Read More: Our review of the top rated innerspring beds

Latex

Latex is considered as the creme de la creme of materials, and in most cases, the price of latex beds is higher. It’s not heat activated and provides a much cooler sleep experience even compared to gel foam. It has faster response and better bounce, but it has a completely different feel. You won’t get that much hug and contouring with this material. An example would be Zenhaven mattress.

More reading: The 5 Best Latex Beds You Can Buy in 2018

Hybrid

These days many manufacturers realized that combining materials and different types negates all negative sides and you end up with a much better product overall. Typical hybrids are coil or latex with foam. An example would be the Purple bed.  Another fantastic example is Leesa mattress which combines latex based foam on top with memory foam below it.

Mattress vs. Toppers

To save money, you can opt to purchase a topper rather than an entire mattress. However, mattress toppers are rarely as effective as desired, especially when they are placed on an aging mattress. If the underlying mattress is starting to sag or otherwise fail, it is unlikely that the topper is going to do anything to improve performance. Most likely, you are going to want to opt for a mattress rather than a topper when a good night’s sleep is your top priority.

Conclusion


As you can plainly see, there are plenty of high-quality memory foam mattress brands on the market today. If you would like to purchase one for your own home, the beds listed above are a great place to start your search. In fact, there is a good chance that you will find a winner from that list without having to go any further.

We hope you now have all the information you need to make an informed purchase. Thank you for taking the time to review our buying guide, and we wish you the best of luck with your selection. Here’s to a great night’s sleep!

Author: Mark Reddick

When I’m not learning about sleep, you can find me watching “the big game” with my friends. I absolutely love sports and have grown to follow the rest aspect in athletes. Modern technology allows us to track athletes sleep and rest, which in turn helps predict their performance.

I hope that everyone that finds our site takes a new approach to sleep. The world needs to stop thinking about it as something “we just do”, but rather something that allows us “to do everyday.”

Cheers to having the best sleep of your life!

3 Comments
  1. Reply
    Kamron April 7, 2017 at 9:27 am

    I was a big fan of spring beds but you guys made me change after like 6 years! My choice was Dreamfoam Arctic Dreams and so far I can’t tell you how happy I am. I wake up feeling fresh and I need like 1h less sleep per night!

  2. Reply
    kirk LUDWIG February 6, 2018 at 2:00 pm

    have you tested a live and sleep mattress yet

    • Reply
      Sarah Cummings February 8, 2018 at 8:33 am

      Hey, I’ve added it to our to-test list! Thanks 🙂

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