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Does your old mattress need a replacement? Are you ready to tackle this challenge while being on a budget?
We mentioned countless times that price doesn’t determine the quality, and nowadays you can find a lot of affordable brands without breaking the bank account. However, to purchase the top budget mattress, you want to do some research; otherwise, you could be wasting your money.
Since we care about your sleeping experience and comfort, we’ve taken the time to create this buying guide, which will make everything easy. Please keep in mind that each unit has a different specification, and there is no such thing as the perfect mattress that will accommodate everyone’s needs.
Without further ado, let’s get started!
And for a wider selection, check out our overall best bed list.
8 Top Rated Budget Beds
Olee Sleep - Best Pressure Relief
In our opinion, the best budget mattress is Olee Sleep. A well-designed, supportive, and comfortable construction should provide a full night’s rest and relieve pressure points in your body while improving mental and emotional well-being.
Its elegant and sleek design comes with several layers of memory foam that ensure you have a relaxing and refreshing sleeping experience. Olee Sleep is 10” tall and contains pressure relief materials that shape according to your body, while regulating body temperature and prevents hot sleeping.
There are three layers of foam, and each of them is designed with a specific purpose. The top layer features gel-infused foam that promotes airflow and keeps you fresh at night. On the other hand, the middle one prevents damage and defection of the mattress, while the bottom layer is a support base.
This bed should protect you from uncomfortable body strains and ensure you have a restful and soothing sleep. When it comes to edge support, it’s sturdy and firm and eliminates the risk of rolling off the mattress in the middle of the night.
Signature Sleep - Best Reversible
Signature Sleep delivers affordable products that aim to satisfy even the most demanding users. However, this model is unique in the entire collection as it can be used on both sides. You can simply flip the mattress and have an entirely new sleeping surface.
Signature Sleep features 7-inch, and 15-gauge coils, which are pocketed in a diamond-shape matrix. The top and bottom layers are made of CertiPUR-US certified memory foam and promote comfort and stability. This type of design locks the coils in place and prevents motion transfer, which is suitable for couples.
The cover is non-removable, so it’s advisable to protect the bed with dust-resistant and stain-resistant cover.
LUCID - Best in Support
With the vast selection of mattresses, the Lucid brand has made quite the name for itself in the bedding industry. Even though the manufacturer claims to have a bed that will satisfy the needs of every sleeper, we’ve taken a bit of time to review Lucid gel-infused mattress.
Now, if you aren’t familiar with the term, a gel mattress might cause some confusion. A gel-infused bed should provide a comfortable sleeping experience and prevent hot sleeping. Therefore, Lucid is made of two layers of memory foam.
The top layer features 2.5 inches of previously mentioned gel-infused foam, while the bottom contains 7.5 inches of high-density foam to offer support and medium-firm feel. All layers are CertiPUR-US-certified and free of ozone-depleting substances.
Additionally, the lightweight and breathable material can provide you comfortable sleeping, while preventing overheating. Lucid is a bit firmer, which is great if you prefer that kind of feel.
Linenspa - Best Hybrid
If you are looking for an affordable and good hybrid mattress, then Linenspa might be something to consider. This bed-in-a-box brand has been shaking up the market with its budget-friendly line of sleep products. Linenspa features a combination of memory foam and coils, which aims to deliver pressure-relieving and supportive properties.
This unit contains two layers; the top one features 1.5” poly foam that has a quick recovery time and shapes according to your body. In this case, you won’t feel stuck in bed and unable to move.
On the other hand, the support layer is made of steel coils, which adds some bounce to the structure and functions as the primary support system. The space between coils promotes airflow and regulates your body temperature.
Even though the majority of mattresses employ a pocketed coil system, Linenspa leans more toward traditional design with an open system. When it comes to firmness, this bed is on the firmer side; however, the cover provides a soft and pressure-relieving feel.
LIFE Home - Ideal for Back Pain Relief
There are a lot of reasons why you might be experiencing back pain; however, a bad mattress can really contribute to them. For that reason, Home Life has designed a bed that could provide you ultimate comfort and the highest support to your body and neck.
Since this is an eight-inch mattress, it might be more suited for lightweight individuals and kids.
When it comes to design, Home Life features nearly 480 independently-encased coils, which distribute weight evenly and help relieve pressure points. Additionally, this bed comes included with a euro top to offer extra support and softness.
Also, individually-encased coils minimize motion transfer, especially if you share a bed with a restless sleeper. Between the coils and cover, you will find polyester layering and foam, to avoid the mattress being too springy or firm.
View more back pain options.
Zinus - Best Odor Control
It seems that with memory foam brands, you can’t avoid that awful smell that tends to linger for days. Even though off-gassing is a natural occurrence in the memory foam manufacturing process, some brands use high-quality materials to avoid this issue. For that reason, Zinus has managed to create a green-tea infused bed to prevent odor.
Considering the composition, Zinus might seem too simple, with only two layers, but they have a lot to offer. The base layer of the mattress has 5 inches for very dense foam, while the top player features one inch of gel-infused memory foam. The gel should improve airflow and alleviate pressure points since it’s less dense.
The top layer is also green-tea infused, which preserves the material, keeps it fresh, and naturally repel bacteria and odor. Both layers are U.S. Certified.
Even though Zinus is on a firmer side, the plush comfort foam and a soft cover should provide a comfortable sleeping experience and accommodate almost any sleep position.
Best Price Mattress - Most Comfortable
Another bed in the line of affordable mattresses, Best Price has shown significant performance among sleepers. Even though the name suggests otherwise, this unit might provide you the comfort you actually deserve.
This product features three layers of memory foam, specifically designed to keep you comfortable all night long and relieve pressure points. On top of that, it’s covered with a Jacquard cover that offers a smooth sleeping surface, which you can remove and wash, to maintain proper hygiene.
The top layer is charcoal-infused to prevents odor, mildew, and moisture, while underneath lies super soft pressure alleviating foam. On the other hand, the bottom layer contains a high-density memory foam which prevents motion transfer and sinking in sensation.
Best Price is a medium soft mattress (good for those side sleepers out there) that will offer you comfort and stability due to proper edge support.
Classic Brands - Best Cooling
We often associate the mattresses with a warm and cozy sensation every time we go to sleep. Therefore, it might be strange to think that a bed can have cooling properties. But, you would be surprised to know how many individuals have issues with hot sleeping.
If you are one of those people who tend to sleep hot, then Classic Brands might be able to help you.
This 6” bed features two layers of memory foam, where one is gel-infused to prevent hot sleeping, and promote airflow. Gel naturally draws the moisture and heat out of your body for a more comfortable sleeping experience. On the other hand, the support base shapes according to your body and ensure proper spinal alignment.
All materials are resistant to allergens, bacteria, mold, dust mites, and meet CertiPUR US program standards. As the manufacturer states, Classic Brands is a medium-firm bed, which has multiple purposes and can be used in different conditions, such as in R.V., boats, and bedrooms.
Things to Consider When Shopping for Quality at Low Cost
Material Used, Construction & Foam Layers
Construction can determine the price of the bed because some materials are more expensive than others. Additionally, as a rule, multi-layer units will cost more than units that have fewer layers. Basically, the more material is used, the pricier they tend to be.
When it comes to construction, there are two main categories of materials, coils, and foam. Each of them offers various options and multiple features. For instance, they can be made of latex, memory foam, polyfoam, or be a combination of these.
On the other hand, products with coils can feature traditional innerspring or pocketed coils that isolate the motion. Keep in mind that all-foam beds are more affordable than hybrids. Also, if you are purchasing a foam bed, make sure it’s CertiPUR-US certified, which means the bed is free of dangerous chemicals.
The coil gauge and count are something that can help you determine the quality of hybrid or innerspring options. However, let’s what’s the difference between gauge and count:
- Gauge – it measures the coil thickness. When the number is lower, the coil is thicker. An ideal thickness is typically between 12 and 15.
- Count – this indicates how many coils are in the bed, firmness, and support. Hybrid and innerspring mattresses need to have at least 300 coils or more.
Commonly identified as a traditional choice, innerspring beds are assembled with spring coils made of steel, which are added for support. There are a couple of mechanisms manufacturers use to construct these types of mattresses. They can be stand-alone, interlocked, or individually wrapped.
The majority of coil beds feature comfort layers that are made of cotton or foam, which shape according to your body and soften the impact of innerspring. Even though coils offer a full-body support, they can create what’s known as “pressure points” and the thin foam layer might not be enough for some sleepers.
However, you can always add a topper for additional comfort.
If you have decided to buy a memory foam option (see our cheap picks), then you’ve probably noticed many manufacturers refer to indentation load deflection or ILD. This measures how hard or soft the mattress can be.
The ILD often ranges between 10 and 12, instead of a single number. However, there is a reason for this. Various conditions or the environment the bed has been stored in can significantly affect ILD. For example, humidity and moisture are the two factors that can cause slight variations in measurements, which is why many retailers show an ILD rating in a range format.
High-quality foam beds feature ratings between 13 to 15, while the support foam has a higher ILD due to support and stability. You should avoid the mattresses that have ILD lower than ten because it’s more prone to sagging within the first year.
No one likes an overly hot bed due to an uncomfortable feeling. If you tend to sleep hot, then you’ll have issues with a lot of mattress options. However, if you choose gel-infused memory foam units or sleeping surfaces that have open-cell technology, then you will be able to minimize hot sleeping.
Same as the previous features, the thickness can significantly contribute to the mattress level of support. For example, if you are looking for a medium-firm bed, then thickness should be no less than 9 inches. On the other hand, people who prefer soft mattresses need at least 14 inches to feel comfortable.
Some sleepers might choose even thicker brands due to various factors, such as weight, personal preference, or height.
Return, Warranty Coverage & Sleep Trial
Before closing the deal, read the fine print on sleep trials, return, and warranty coverage. These features help you choose a quality product for you.
- Sleep trial – many companies, as well as retailers, offer sleep trials. This way, you are testing the bed within the convenience of your home, without any pressure or nagging sale person. However, this period depends on various terms and conditions, so make sure to check them out before finalizing a purchase.
- Warranty – it protects your rights and usually reflects somewhat in the quality of the bed. Warranties that last only a couple of years often indicate an investment that might not be the greatest. For that reason, you should consider selecting something that has at least a decade-long warranty.
- Return – if sleep trial isn’t an option, then return policy is something you should be looking into. It’s a major positive to have an ability to return the mattress and get a full refund if it doesn’t work for you.
Key Factors to Consider Before Buying
Type of Sleeper
- Back sleepers – as many experts advise, sleeping on your back is the healthiest sleeping position for your body. The spine is placed in a natural position, while shoulders, arms, and legs are free to rest. However, this position usually leads to snoring, considering gravity pulls your tongue to the back of your throat.
Therefore, it’s not recommended for people suffering from sleep apnea. Additionally, scientists have noticed that individuals with poor sleeping habits tend to spend more time on their backs.
- Side sleepers – nearly 63% of people prefer side sleeping position, and there are various subsets such as the yearner, the fatal position, and the log. On the other hand, many studies indicate that side sleepers have better circulation and improved digestion, as well as reduced heartburn. Also, it is preferable to sleep on your left side, then on the right one.
But, one of the biggest drawbacks is that you often get to experience nub arm, or shoulder and hip pain. However, you can lessen the symptoms by selecting a suitable mattress.
- Stomach sleepers – approximately 17% of the population are stomach sleepers, and it’s the rarest bed pose among people. Even though sleeping on your stomach creates additional pressure on your neck and spine, it’s not all bad. Stomach sleepers tend to snore less, plus many bed huggers find sleeping face-down quite comfortable because they like the feeling of fluffiness against their bodies.
In this case, they stay still longer, which helps them avoid tossing and turning during the night. But, soreness in the morning is one of the drawbacks you should look out for.
- Combo sleepers – if you roll around and switch positions during the night, then you might fall into this category. These, oftentimes more restless sleepers, risk suffering from neck pain and sleep apnes.
Short-Term or Long-Term Use?
When shopping, you need to determine your purchase’s purpose. For example, do you need a short-term or a long-term solution? Guest beds don’t have the same tear and wear as the regular mattresses, so why spend extra money on something you won’t be using?
On the other hand, if you just moved into an apartment, or you are going to a college, you won’t have space or money to place a luxury bed. In this case, you will require an average mattress with a decent support system and a comfortable sleeping surface.
But, no matter how small your bedroom might be, be wary of settling for the cheapest mattress. Low-cost beds often have a poor selection of materials which can eventually affect your health and sleep hygiene. Also, you may end up paying more by replacing that cheap bed than purchasing the more expensive one to start.
Consider the Person Who will Use It
Factors to consider
- Weight of the User
Weight is an essential factor to consider because various brands offer different types according to body shape. For instance, if you are a lightweight person, then you’ll benefit more from a medium-soft mattress. On the other hand, curvier individuals will want to pick medium-firm beds to avoid sagginess and stuck in sensation.
- Number of People Who Will Use It
If one or two people are sleeping on the same mattress, then it tends to last longer. But, if your bed gets shared around your friends and family, then you might run into a problem. We all have different sleeping habits, body weights, and sleep position, and after all, a mattress should be customized for your needs only.
- Will it be used by Adults or Teens?
We can’t say there is a significant difference between teens and adults when it comes to mattress use. However, teens might not need luxurious and bulky beds many adults prefer.
- Will this be Placed in the Guest Room or Not?
Guest beds aren’t designed to have advanced features like bedroom ones. Therefore, you don’t have to spend hundreds of dollars on a mattress if you have a couple of people staying over every other month.
On the other hand, furnishing your bedroom requires a lot of time and patience and investing in a high-quality mattress is the same as investing in your health.
What You Get When You Buy a “Cheap” Mattress
This price range doesn’t offer you a lot, at best you can get a comfortable air mattress or something to get by until you have enough money to purchase a high-quality bed. However, don’t despair; you still have a couple of options to explore.
The best chance you have to get your hand on a decent bed is to consider used products. But, if you choose to follow this route, proceed with caution. First of all, do you want to lie in someone else’s bed, especially without knowing its history?
Unfortunately, some people don’t have a choice but to buy a used product. In that case, wash and sanitize bed thoroughly before any use. We know how tempting it might be to get a refurbished mattress, but they are usually worn out and only placed in a beautiful cover, to appear better.
Same as with the previous category, your options are going to be limited, and again you’ll have to sacrifice support and durability. Regardless of the reason, when getting a cheap brand, it should be a temporary solution.
You are most likely to find all-foams, with a couple of hybrids, which probably feature low-quality materials. Even though the price doesn’t always determine the quality, you can’t expect to purchase a premium unit for $200.
However, you can employ a couple of tricks such as switching from a queen to a full-size. In this case, you might be able to save up to $100, but you’ll have to settle for a smaller unit.
If you are sleeping alone, or you are buying a product for a kid, then downsizing is a reasonable decision. After all, you don’t need that much space, and you can save additional money without compromising on quality.
To see our full guide for top mattresses under $200, click here.
Below $300 - $400
While you can get a decent mattress within the $300 to $400 price range, you have to understand that this type of bed isn’t for everyone. Although you are going to find plenty of choices, the quality, as well as durability can be questionable.
Products under $400 are mostly made of foam, with a couple of hybrids; however, the quality isn’t that promising. But, if you are looking for a temporary solution and you don’t want to spend a lot of money, then this category might satisfy your needs.
For instance, maybe you found yourself in a short-term lease, or you need a solution for a college apartment – in that case, spending a lot of money is pointless.
Below $500 - $800
There are some pretty nice deals in the under $800 category, but you still need to make a proper selection and sacrifice a couple of luxury features. At this price point, you are limited mostly to all-foam beds, though there are a few hybrids worthy of your attention.
However, you can’t expect to purchase premium materials and have durability. For example, an innerspring you find under $500 won’t maintain the same spring and support system as the years go by. The same rule applies to foam since low-density foams degrade fast.
Another thing to consider when buying an affordable solution is the level of support it will provide you. To put it simply, low-density foam tends to produce less support, but for some sleepers, this isn’t a deal-breaker.
People who prefer a sinking in sensation might actually find this beneficial unless they don’t develop back pain and achiness. On the other hand, stomach, back, and combo sleepers shouldn’t skimp on support.
But, if you are still on a tight budget, you will be able to find a couple of units that won’t break your bank account.
If you’re looking for bed in this price range check our best mattresses under $500 guide.
If your budget allows you to spend $1,000, then you have more options than you think, especially if you are shopping online. You would be surprised to know how many online retailers offer premium quality beds for about half the cost of brick and mortar stores. In fact, you will find plenty of solutions here under $1,000.
Keep in mind that this category doesn’t limit you to foam options only. People who prefer memory foam, you can purchase a high-quality unit in this price range. But, not all foams are the same, nor do they provide the same density.
Generally, those with higher density offer better performance, and you’ll see numbers ranging from 2.5 to 7.0 pounds. However, low-density foams don’t necessarily provide bad performance, but they have fewer materials, which is the main reason why they are cheaper.
Additionally, they will lose support faster and have a shorter lifespan. In the best-case scenario, low-density foam mattresses can serve up to five years, which isn’t the case with high-density ones.
If you happen to find a low-density cheap bed, consider whether it will serve you well. For $1,000, you can buy a high-quality unit with multiple layers of foam, or even choose a hybrid, which could be a better solution.
Drawbacks of Buying Cheap Mattress
Prone to Sagging
Sagging is one of the most significant issues foam products face, regardless of the price point. But, let’s be honest, cheap solutions are more prone to this than premium units. It all comes down to previously mentioned foam density.
Low-quality materials are the number one contributor to bed sag. A lot of manufacturers decide to cut costs by installing the inferior components, which eventually result in malfunction or, in this case, sagging. They lack longevity and durability needed to handle one or two bodies sleeping on the same space every night, over the course of several years.
Additionally, any water damage can affect your bed, causing the top layer to compress. For that reason, many retailers use this to deny you a warranty claim due to visible tear and wear. Therefore, you should consider getting a cover to avoid further issues.
Sagging isn’t the only issue you have to worry about because everyday tear and wear will cause your mattress to deteriorate faster. However, there is one thing that can help you evaluate the quality of the bed and how well it will stand the test of time.
Look at the cover; does it feature quality material with solid stitching, or are they loosely made? Also, consider going for brands that provide a removable cover because you get to avoid stains and spills, and maintain proper hygiene.
Premium units are often made in the U.S. However, that doesn’t necessarily mean you are getting a high-end mattress. Usually, brands want to avoid the shipping costs, and since products are big and bulky, they are more challenging to transport.
When it comes to brands that manufacture mattresses overseas, a lot of them offer premium quality. Some things you should pay attention to is the foam and whether it’s CertiPUR-US certified.
Odor and off-gassing don’t only affect cheap mattresses; however, it’s more pronounced within this price range. When your bed arrives, and you open the box, you might be hit with a chemical smell. The majority of foam products do some degree off-gassing, but the question is how much and where does it happen?
Buying an organic bed is one of the ways to eliminate this issue, but units that are 100% organic tend to pass the $1,000 price point. Additionally, there is a lot of controversy about the health risks of off-gassing, but scientists haven’t been able to prove a connection.
If you are purchasing a budget-friendly option, then be prepared to tackle an unpleasant smell. Some suggest that keeping a bed in a well-ventilated room can help you get rid of the odor. Otherwise, it can linger for months.
For that reason, look for CertiPUR-US certified foam. Even though it still contains the chemical smell, at least it’s not toxic and has met some standards. How a product arrives also has a significant impact.
Nowadays, a lot of brands tend to vacuum-ship and box their products, which makes them easy to roll up. However, they will smell more upon arrival (but again, that should dissipate).
Accessories to Help Them Last for Years
While there is no way to fit mattress into a washer, there are a couple of ways to keep your bed clean. For instance, you can spot clean it with a solution made of warm water and mild detergent. This can help you expand the lifespan of the sleeping surface.
On the other hand, to minimize the odor and slightly freshen up the mattress, sprinkle baking soda across the top layer, and then vacuum everything. You should repeat these steps at least once a month to maintain hygiene.
Use the Right Foundation
The appropriate foundation can either prolong the life of your unit or make it shorter. However, many sleepers fail to realize the importance of their foundation. Usually, a box spring is a common choice for the majority of sleepers, but they might not be the right choice for latex or memory foam options.
A foundation can help you improve the support, and for the proper selection, you can ask customer service for a recommendation.
Use Mattress Protectors
One of the best ways to keep your unit fresh looking and to prolong its lifespan, it to get a protector. Keep in mind that a lot of warranties are void when there is visible tear and wear on the sleeping surface. This involves stains, water damage, and so on.
On top of that, the protector can help you with the bed bugs, dirt, allergens, and dust mites. It should reduce allergic reactions and provide a good night’s sleep. But, make wash this bed accessory regularly, to maintain its protectiveness.
Frequently Asked Questions
What’s the Greatest Budget Mattress In a Box?
It all comes down to your personal preferences because even the worst mattress can be great for some people. However, from a technical point of view, a budget-friendly great bed in a box should come with a decent support system, relieve pressure points, and offer you a comfortable night’s rest.
Choose mattresses according to your body weight, health issues, and materials. The more money you invest, the bigger the return you can expect.
Are Cheap Mattresses Recommended For Back Pain Sufferers?
The price of the bed doesn’t directly influence the feel of the mattress or how it affects our backs. A lot of times, even an affordable option can help us alleviate pressure points and minimize the pain.
When choosing a unit, pay attention to the materials, regardless of the type.
Check our guides for budget friendly options:
Are Online Mattresses More Affordable?
Online retailers and brands don’t have rent or own a physical store, pay bills, or hire employees. They closely work with the factory and save money, which eventually passes on customers, by offering discounts, or affordable units.
As you can probably tell, high prices don’t always come with quality. Within a budget-friendly category, your options will be limited, but this doesn’t mean you can’t find a bed to satisfy your needs.
You can get a great model if you know what you want. When choosing an affordable bed, you’ll want a better quality and durable unit; however, that’s not always an option. With so many brands on the market, it’s tough to decide which one is worth spending money on.
We hope that going through various features and different models in this article, we were able to help you narrow down the search.