Sleep Better: How to Choose a Memory Foam Mattress You’ll Love

Because a good night’s rest is everything.

woman sleeping on foam mattress
Looks comfy, doesn't it?Andrea Piacquadio

Choosing a mattress is one of the most important decisions you’ll make in the quest for sleep and comfort. Memory foam has become an incredibly popular option because it molds to your body, relieving pressure on your hips, neck and shoulders. But there’s a lot to consider before making the switch or buying a new foam model. Not only do some foams retain more body heat than others (which could be an issue if you sleep hot), you’ll also want to understand the different types of density and firmness—and which will work best for you.

Linenspa 10 Inch Memory Foam and Innerspring Hybrid Mattress - Medium Feel - Queen
This model has both traditional coils and modern cushion to combine the benefits of both.Linenspa

Density is an important consideration when deciding on a memory foam mattress. High density is considered the most durable while medium is best for optimal motion isolation. That means if you share a bed, you and your partner won’t disturb the other if one tosses and turns. And then there’s low-density foam, which is the easiest to break in and get your body adjusted to quickly.

Zinus 12 Inch Gel-Infused Green Tea Memory Foam Mattress, Queen
Firm support; twin weight limit is 250 pounds, larger sizes support up to 500.Zinus

There are a few types of foam to consider in a memory foam mattress. There’s “traditional” which responds to your body’s shape and weight. That helps minimize pressure points while increasing circulation, but some sleepers complain that it traps warmth and can feel too hot. Then there’s “gel” memory foam that’s made with the same gel formulation found in gel shoe inserts. In a memory foam mattress, the gel increases the amount of air that can flow through and then helps draw heat away while you’re sleeping.

TUFT & NEEDLE Original Mattress - Queen
After receiving, allow up to 72 hours for it to fully expand.TUFT & NEEDLE

If you’re concerned about off-gassing and chemicals used in the making of your mattress, check that your memory foam buy is CertiPUR-US certified. It’s an American-based non-for-profit program that prevents foam from including harmful metals, chemicals or dangerous gas emissions. And if you’re worried about memory foam spreading allergens, not to worry—the density of latex and memory foam mattresses already inhibit the spread of dust mites.

Also Consider:

Ashley Chime 12 Inch Medium Firm Memory Foam Mattress - CertiPUR-US Certfied, Queen
Reduces motion transfer so partners don’t wake each other up when moving around.Ashley
AmazonBasics 8-Inch Memory Foam Mattress - Soft Plush Feel, Full
Bottom layer is firm for support, middle one has holes to regulate heat, and the top one cushions.AmazonBasics