5 Highest Rated Modern Waterbed Mattresses

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What type of sleeping surface, other than traditional mattresses, can generate an ultimate feeling of comfort and ensure ultimate relaxation? Waterbeds will probably be one of the first things that come to one’s mind. 

Some people would not even consider substituting one of these with a standard mattress. They stay faithful to these products and the sleeping experience they provide. Although they make up a relatively small share of the bedding products market, it is essential to know how to pick the greatest waterbed mattress from the available models.

We have done thorough research to put together a list of relevant features to look out for, as well as the things you should be cautious about. We hope you will find our tips useful in picking the most optimal item.

For those of you interested in additional options, we have provided our selection of highest rated mattress picks overall in another guide.

Best Support

small product image of INNOMAX
INNOMAX
Best Support
20 mil premium vinylClick Here for Price
Best Durability

small product image of Classic Mattress
Classic Mattress
Best Durability
24 Mil VinylClick Here for Price
Best Heavy Duty

small product image of California King 95% Waveless Waterbed
California King 95% Waveless Waterbed
Best Heavy Duty
Fiber integrated into its coreClick Here for Price
Best Motion Reductiont

small product image of Boyd Specialty Sleep
Boyd Specialty Sleep
Best Motion Reduction
The product’s core incorporates three fiber layersClick Here for Price
Best Traditional

small product image of Waterbed
Waterbed
Best Traditional
4-layer motion isolation systemClick Here for Price

5 Top Rated Waterbeds Reviewed

INNOMAX - Best Support

HIGHLIGHTS:

  • Full Motion and Flotation Performance
  • Supports natural body alignment
  • Neutralization of motion
  • Easy setup and maintenance

In our opinion, the best waterbed mattress is INNOMAX.

Are you in search of an effective way to give your body ultimate relaxation after an exhausting day? Many satisfied customers who have already experienced the benefits of sleeping on the Sanctuary Free Flow Full Wave Waterbed Mattress by INNOMAX testify about its high level of quality, accounting for its high ratings.

This King-sized mattress is designed to fit wooden waterbed frames or rigid bed boxes (minimum dimensions 9’’x 72’’x84’’). For the most optimal performance, it should be filled slightly below the Safety Liner. With this widely-sold item, you will be at the advantage of experiencing the SG1 Full Motion Performance and Full Flotation Performance.

This type of sleeping surface will help your body maintain its natural alignment, with the particular focus on the head, neck, and entire spinal region. It is powerful in alleviating pain and reducing the pressure from critical points. Owing to its specially designed surface, your sleeping partner will sleep disturbance-free, which is another significant feature. 

Its T-Corner Lap Seam construction and double reinforced corners add to the product’s stability and sturdiness. You can keep it clean with no effort, using the approved conditioner.

Classic Mattress - Best Durability

HIGHLIGHTS:

  • Semi-waveless
  • Sturdy and reliable
  • Great level of comfort
  • Fill kit and conditioner included

When investing in a new bed, you expect your product to last for many years and maintain its optimal performance. According to customers’ reviews, California King Semi-Waveless Waterbed Mattress is just what matches your search criteria. This sturdy model will make you feel care-free, spending many relaxing nights, and getting plenty of rest.

This product is constructed with extra reinforced corners to increase the product’s stability and durability. It incorporates the 24 Mil Vinyl. Its top surface will stay flat, without getting distorted prematurely, owing to extra interior reinforcement. With this semi-waveless waterbed, you are likely to experience approximately 8-10 seconds of motion. 

The relaxing, therapeutic features of this popular model will bring about several positive effects on your body. You will feel ache and tension-free, enjoying the privilege of a sound night’s sleep to gain your energy back for the upcoming day. 

The product comes with a handy filling kit and the approved cleaning conditioner.

California King 95% Waveless Waterbed - Best Heavy Duty

HIGHLIGHTS:

  • Very durable and long-lasting
  • Soft movement
  • Contouring effect
  • Pressure and pain relief

Your body seeks ultimate comfort to get fully rejuvenated during the night. To cater to this common need, provide it with a chance to experience the soothing and extremely cozy environment of California King 95% Waveless Waterbed. You will wake up feeling energized, with every inch of your body getting to know the benefits of this outstanding product.

This water mattress is designed to be durable and resilient. You can expect it to perform well for many years to come. Only the best and most reliable materials are used in combination with long experience and optimal technology to achieve this. 

With this USA-made waterbed, you will only feel slight movement lasting no longer than 3-4 seconds, which is significantly shorter compared to traditional free-flow mattresses. It is also marked by a great ability to contour around your body. That is the result of fiber integrated into its core. Your body will stay in an adequate position through the night, experiencing no pain in the middle back or neck zone.

Boyd Specialty Sleep - Best Motion Reduction

HIGHLIGHTS:

  • Ergonomic support
  • Minimum or no motion
  • Extremely conforming
  • Easy setup and maintenance

How would you feel about indulging yourself in the comfort of a premium quality waterbed, which minimizes the transfer of motion? Not only does it sound like an ultimate sleeping experience, but it is at your hand’s reach with California Waveless Waterbed Boyd Conditioner.

Made to last for many years, this popular model features the five-layered system for the reduction of waves. Moreover, its corners are additionally supported, for a higher level of sturdiness. The product’s core incorporates three fiber layers, to ensure the most ergonomic support.

Cuddling your body cozily, this quality bed will keep your spine optimally supported. You will feel all the pros of sleeping on a pain and pressure-free surface, with your energy levels increasing night by night.

The mattress features a layer of special vinyl resistant to heat. Its top surface is designed to be of reduced tension. For best performance, use it with a waterbed frame with hard sides.

Fill kit and cleaning conditioner are provided with this product.

Waterbed - Best Traditional

HIGHLIGHTS:

  • Sturdy and reliable
  • 95% of motion isolated
  • Proper weight distribution
  • Ache and pressure relieving

Are you one of those waterbed lovers who can’t imagine sleeping on any other type of surface? The 95% Waveless Waterbed delivers the old-school comfort and support to make the most of your sleeping experience. With this comfy mattress, you get excellent value for your money.

To feel the full potential of this great bed, use a hard-sided frame. It will help to isolate as much as 95% of motion, for long, undisturbed sleeping sessions. It is the result of a 4-layer motion isolation system, integrated into its core. Sturdy vinyl used to make this model improves its durability and extends its shelf life. 

What many satisfied customers find particularly appealing is even weight distribution and its ability to relieve pressure efficiently. It adjusts to the shape of your body, cuddling it gently for maximum relaxation. It is delivered with a heater, fill and drain kit, and a mattress pad.

image of young woman buying online

What to Consider When Shopping for a Waterbed Mattress?

Responsiveness

Some mattress types are rather stiff and do not respond to your body’s changing position during the night. Others, however, allow your body to sink in too deeply, featuring a low level of responsiveness as well. 

Ever since they were first invented, waterbeds have had the reputation of being highly responsive. In other words, they follow the motion of your body and respond to it to a certain extent, greater or smaller, depending on the mattress type and construction. This feature is of particular interest to couples seeking an ideal bed for sex.

A water-filled bed is marked by the bounce-back effect, which appeals to sexually active couples. They remain a synonym for the bedding products, which ensure the best type of environment for intimacy.

Noise it Produces

Noise can be a massive disturbance and deprive us of sound, quality sleep. Many sleepers experience this frustrating issue on a regular basis. That is why we choose mattresses that are silent and guarantee a quiet and peaceful sleeping environment.

When waterbeds are in question, the noise can be an issue when your bed is not filled properly. It is essential to follow the setup and filling instructions and recommended water amount to prevent it from making sounds resembling the splashing of water.

Off-Gassing

A new mattress has just been delivered to your door, and you find yourself puzzled by the intense odor you felt right after unpacking it. It is not surprising at all since the materials used in making these mattresses are usually prone to having this type of smell. In most cases, it will be gone after a few days, and you will be able to continue using your new bed without having to bother about it.

Waterbeds are made of vinyl, which can have a high off-gassing potential in newly purchased products. Keep your new mattress in a well-ventilated room for the odor to fade away as soon as possible.

Adjustable Firmness

How firm a bed sleeps is another factor to consider when opting for a new model. After all, it is a matter of personal feelings and preference, so it is always advisable to test your future bed thoroughly and check out for yourself whether it makes an adequate pick. 

Although they come in a variety of firmness levels, the products from the category of waterbeds are generally considered to be on the softer side, compared with their traditional counterparts. A particularly convenient feature of these items lies in the fact that their firmness level can be adjusted according to your personal needs. You achieve this by altering the level of water to create the type of support you prefer.

Breathability and Cooling Ability

If a bed you sleep in retains body heat, you are most likely to feel a good deal of discomfort, tossing and turning, with excessive sweating. Poor breathability and thermoregulation of your bed thus present a severe obstacle to quality sleep. 

Some materials, such as memory foam, tend to trap body heat, resulting in a warm sleeping environment. Others, such as innerspring systems and latex, allow for better air circulation.

When waterbeds are in question, you are more likely to sleep too cold, rather than overheat. Namely, the water they are filled with usually maintains the same temperature as the air temperature in the room. Moreover, it absorbs your body heat. That is why some models come with a heating gear, enabling you to suit your bed warmness to your preference.

Check out our top rated cooling beds here.

Waterbeds - An Overview

What is a Waterbed?

About half a century ago, waterbeds became a new craze among thousands of sleepers who enjoyed the floating-like, relaxing sensation they offered. They soon got the reputation of comfy sleeping surfaces, available at relatively lower prices compared with traditional mattresses. They were sold in large numbers, making a substantial share on the bedding product market. 

Up to the present day, their popularity has decreased significantly. However, quite a few sleepers remain faithful to the old habit of using no other type of products but these. Their quality and performance have been improved over time, and several high-end models nowadays offer the quality and comfort equal to that of standard mattresses. 

Today, these items come in several different forms and feature sets of characteristics that vary across different models. They provide various types of support, incorporate innovative materials and technology, and come with accompanying gear and maintenance products. If looked after properly, they can remain in good shape for a large number of years.  

So, before you hit the store in search of your waterbed, keep in mind the main points outlined in the buying guide which follows.

What are the Different Types?

The way in which water is contained inside these models is the primary criterion for distinguishing between two main types: hard-side and soft-side waterbeds. In this section, we look at their essential characteristics in more detail.

Softside

Soft-sided options are bordered with sturdy sides and do not require hard wooden frames. In terms of appearance, they resemble standard mattresses, and you can use them in combination with standard sleeping room furniture. They are also considered to provide a more significant deal of comfort, and their durability is increased to a substantial extent.

The innovative technology used in their design abandons the traditional concept of a thin case filled with water. It features an inner chamber filled with water, encased with one or more layers of foam in combination with upholstery. It features better motion control and ensures proper distribution of weight.

Soft-sided models are durable and long-lasting, plus they can be used with standard sheets, which is another advantage, according to customers. 

Hardside

Hard-sided water mattresses consist of a vinyl case filled with water. Since water is contained inside a relatively thin encasing, these items do not have a consistent shape. As the name suggests, they require a set of hard sides to give it a shape and keep it in place, usually in the form of a specially designed wooden frame. 

Sleepers passionate about this traditional type of water-filled bed appreciate a high degree of comfort and pressure relief they offer. If you decide to purchase one of these items, it will certainly not break the bank, as they are rather affordable.

However, there are a couple of shortcomings customers typically complain about when these items are concerned. The likelihood of them getting damaged is quite high. Also, they are not very convenient in case you need to move them, get in and out of bed too. Temperature regulation is often seen as an issue, as it is hard to attach a heater since they have no upholstery. 

Different Classifications According to Wave and Feel

Another distinction between various types of these mattresses rests upon the wave and feel they produce. They are classified into three different types, including waveless, semi-waveless, and free-flow options.

Waveless

The newest generation in this category of products is based on complex production technology and the use of more advanced materials. To create an ultimate sense of comfort and disturbance-free sleeping environment, these items produce no waves at all.

That is a significant feature, having in mind that some products may produce the moving effects which lasts longer than sleepers find it desirable. Waveless models are usually sturdier and can endure more. They closely resemble traditional mattresses.

How is the impact of waves eliminated in these items? It should be noted that they feature an inner chamber in which water is contained. There are multiple layers of foam, thick foam bolsters, and padding surrounding this chamber, resulting in complete motion isolation.

They will provide substantial support to a sleeper’s body, making the ache and pressure in critical parts significantly less intense. They are marked by an above-average sense of coziness as well.

Semi-Waveless

You like the idea of sleeping on a waterbed but are not so keen on feeling what seems to be an endless stream of moving waves. On the other hand, you want to preserve some of the floating sensations that modern generation waveless models entirely neutralize. It seems that a bed type known as semi-waveless incorporates all the features you are looking for.

Items from this category feature an inner chamber in which stores water. It also integrates a motion-neutralization system, responsible for partial elimination of waves. Layers of foam only allow for a certain amount of movement to be felt. 

According to sleepers’ comments and reviews, these products make the middle grounds between stiffer waveless options and free-flow ones, often criticized for lack of proper support.

Once you lie down in your semi-waveless waterbed, you will feel the gentle wavy motion lasting no longer than a couple of seconds. However, you will feel the benefits of sleeping on it for much longer.

Free-Flow

The earliest versions of water-filled beds were based on the free-flow principle. Apart from being somewhat unusual, sleeping on one such product is an utterly enjoyable experience, too. So, what do we need to point out when these beds are in question?

Not all sleepers find these beds equally acceptable. Namely, it will simply be too much for some of them to carry on feeling the movement effect for as many as 30 seconds. Some may even experience the feeling similar to that of being sea-sick as a result of a moving sleeping surface. 

The construction principle of these items is simple. It revolves around a single water chamber and a thin layer of vinyl encasing. Each time you get in bed or move inside it, you will experience the floating feeling resulting from the free-flow water movement principle.

What customers enjoy about these products is the sense of relaxation and coziness they generate. However, some of them find the motion feature they are marked by a bit excessive and a form of disturbance.

Differentiate a Hardside Waterbed from a Softside

Each of the two types shows a distinct set of characteristics and optimal performance. In this section, we look at both of them to highlight the major similarities and differences between the two.

CRITERIASoftside beds
Hardside beds
Cover MaterialsSince they are quite similar to standard mattresses in several aspects, the same goes for their cover material. It is typically made of cotton, polyester, and other kinds of fabrics utilized in making standard covers.Covers made of fabric are barely ever find in this type of mattress. What they feature instead is a thin cover made of vinyl.
Surface FeelWhen sleeping on one of the beds from this category, the feeling will be somewhat similar to that of a traditional mattress. Namely, its thick cover prevents close contact between the sleeper and the water contained inside the inner chamber.In this type of product, the only borderline between a sleeper’s body and the water contained in the mattress is a thin vinyl cover. It results in a feeling of floating you experience as soon as you get in bed. It may last for a various amount of time and is activated with every move you make while sleeping.
Damage PotentialWater inside these models is contained in a safely-located chamber inside the bed’s core. Surrounded by multiple layers of foam and padding, the chamber itself is well-protected and not so prone to getting damaged.These are known to be far less resilient, as there are no protective layers to keep the water secured inside a chamber. Because it's encasing is rather thin, damages such as leakage or tears are quite frequently encountered. Sharp objects such as nails, animal claws, or needles pose a particular threat to these items.
Water Heating ImplementSleeping in a waterbed of any kind can be rather cold and may call for additional heating. As they are used with low-watt heaters, these models present a more energy-saving option, in comparison with their hard-side counterparts.They are not the most economical solution, as the majority comes with matching high-watt heaters, indicating a higher consumption of energy.
Frame MaterialsAs suggested by the name, the frame, i.e., the sides in these models, incorporate foam bolsters in combination with traditional upholstery. In this respect, they are very similar to standard mattress versions.To acquire and maintain a particular shape, hard side models require a specially designed frame. It keeps the mattress in place, controlling the motion to some extent. It usually incorporates hardwood or softwood as the primary material. In some instances, smaller pads made of foam are used as side support to reduce motion. In terms of appearance, these frames look like most traditional wooden frames.
Price RangeHigh-end products from this category vary in price, typically ranging from $900 to $1500. That is an average amount of money generally needed for a standard quality mattress.These items are on a more affordable side. To obtain one of these models, you will have to invest an average sum of between $50 and $150.
WeightThe average weight of these models once the water is removed amounts to between 100 and 120 pounds. This way, they fit into the category of heavier traditional mattresses. On the other hand, When filled with water, this figure increases to several hundred pounds.These items weigh a lot, regardless of whether they are drained or filled with water. In the latter case, they reach the weight of several hundred pounds.
WavesThe majority of these models is based on two innovative types of construction technologies, including waveless and semi-waveless type. As indicated by their names, both tend to reduce the impact of waves created by the moving of water inside the inner chamber. In waveless ones, this effect is neutralized completely, while the semi-waveless options allow for subtle and short-lasting floating sensation to be felt.A free-flow design of these models means that the water inside the thin encasing is moving freely, making the sleeper feel the full impact of this motion. Some sleepers do not find it entirely appealing.
SizeSoft-sides are available in more sizes than it is the case with hard-sides. These include the Twin size (W:38” x L: 75”), Full (W: 54” x L: 75”), Queen (W:60” x L:80”), King (W: 76W x L:80) and California King (W: 72” x L: 84”)You can choose from three available sizes: Super Single (:48” x L:84”), Queen (W:60” x L:84”), California King (W:72” x L:84”)

Frequently Asked Questions

Are These Good For Back Pain?

Finding a mattress that will help you deal with your backache issues is often a challenging task. In some cases, you may end up feeling that the new mattress you picked is only making things worse. Yet, waterbeds – especially the higher-end ones, are known to be rather efficient in alleviating the pain in your mid and lower back (top beds here).

Subtle motion and a floating feeling these models produce has a beneficial effect on the entire body. Moreover, many models are designed to maintain proper spine alignment and reduce tension in critical parts such as the neck, shoulders, hips, and lumbar area. All in all, people have reported positive experiences related to the use of these products – waveless and semi-waveless ones in particular.

Where Can I Buy a Waterbed Replacement Mattress?

You already own a waterbed and have no intention of replacing it with a standard model. However, at one point, you will probably realize it is high time you got a replacement mattress for your old waterbed. The reason may simply lie in the fact that the old one started showing signs of damage or visible signs of wearing out.

The choice of replacement mattresses available on the market is broad. You can compare the features of products by different manufacturers to find an ideal match for your sleeping needs. Always take enough time to analyze all the significant factors before making the final call.

Conclusion

With all the modern versions of standard mattresses available in stores nowadays, some sleepers might look down on the idea of using a waterbed. Still, there are many of those who still consider these products to be irreplaceable in ensuring an ultimate sleeping experience.

These items have undergone a serious evolution since their infancy days until today. What customers prefer when it comes to water-filled mattress is a unique floating sensation that no other mattress can provide.

With a wide array of characteristics you can choose from, we are almost sure there is an ideal model out there that would introduce you to a whole new dimension of sleeping.

So, if you feel intrigued enough, this is definitely the right place to start your search for your very first waterbed.

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