WHEN choosing the best memory foam mattress for you, it’s worth remembering that not all are created equally.
Just like traditional sprung mattresses, the structure of a memory foam one will give a greater or lesser degree of firmness and support depending on which type you go for.
Memory foam designs have many benefits but also a few drawbacks. They’re a great choice if you suffer from joint or back pain, as the foam surface moulds to the shape of your body and alleviates pressure, something that a sprung mattress cannot do.
If you tend to sleep on your back or side, you’ll feel greater support with memory foam.
Also, if you like the feeling of being cocooned when sleeping, you can’t go wrong – once you’ve found your position and the foam moulds to your body, it will envelop you to create a super-snug feel.
And with that in mind, memory foam is also perfect if you generally stay in one position when you sleep, as the sunken outline of your body shape acts like a cradle.
It’s probably best to avoid memory foam if you’re a front sleeper, as your face can feel a little stifled.
And memory foam has a reputation, quite rightly, for retaining heat – so you’ll struggle to get to grips with it if you’re a hot sleeper.
Lastly, if you like freedom of movement in bed, you may find that the cradling effect of memory foam makes moving a little more difficult.
If you fall into the first category, congratulations. Now you’ll want to know the different types of memory foam mattresses out there so you can pick the right one for you.
1. The Price Is Right
- Morgedal Memory Foam Mattress, from £165 for a double from Ikea – buy here
If you’re slightly tentative about switching from a spring mattress to a memory foam one, you won’t want to break the bank with your new purchase, so this ‘entry-level’ design is ideal.
It has comfort zones give very precise support and relieve pressure on your shoulders and hips and the cover can be removed and machine washed.
It comes with a 25-year guarantee.
2. One Love
- The Memory One Mattress, from £499 for a double from Made.com – buy here
Like a firmer memory foam mattress?
This four-layer design has a sturdy base layer for better support, responsive foam, hypoallergenic quilting (great for allergy sufferers) and flexible foam to keep you cool.
It’s made in the UK and comes with a 101-night trial as well as a 10-year guarantee.
3. Award Winner
- Casper Essential Mattress, from £400 for a double from Amazon – buy here
This mattress was awarded a Which? Best Buy for 2019, so you know it’s a good buy.
It’s been specifically designed with a firm base layer and soft top layer, which offers streamlined support for back, side and stomach sleepers – so no more waking up with aches and pains!
The two layers of premium foam offer not only support, but also breathability and comfort – it’s one of those mattresses that you can sink into, yet is still firm enough for those that don’t like too soft a base.
It has an easy-to-clean cover, but the best thing has got to be the 10-year guarantee and 100-nights trial – if it’s just not working for you after that time, simply send it back for a refund.
4. Best Of Both
- Memory Cool Foam 1500 Mattress, from £799 for a double from Marks & Spencer – buy here
Offering the best of both mattress worlds, this hybrid option has individually pocketed springs.
These rise and fall with your movements to give a cushioned, well-balanced sleep, while the layer of memory foam moulds to the shape of your body for firm, dense full body support.
There is no need to flip this mattress over, simply rotate every few months to keep it in the best condition.
5. Sink Down
- Silentnight Studio Gel Memory Foam Mattress, from £480.99 for a double from Wayfair – buy here
Made from memory foam with a top layer of gel-infused foam, this mattress provides excellent comfort, breathability and pressure relief that won’t leave you feeling hot and bothered.
The high-density foam is lighter than traditional spring mattresses yet is durable and features zoning for better spinal alignment to relieve aches and pains.
Memory Foam Mattress Types
Traditional memory foam became popular in the 1990s and was designed for cradling support to enhance circulation and decrease stress on your joints. It is very good at absorbing heat.
Best for: Those with back or joint pain and cold sleepers.
Once manufacturers realised that the heat absorption of memory foam was putting some people off buying it, they modified the structure so the foam had more air pockets, making it better at dispersing heat and therefore regulating body temperature better. It also responds more quickly to pressure, so helps avoid the feeling of sinking often associated with traditional memory foam.
Best for: Hot sleepers who prefer more freedom of movement.
This is memory foam that has been infused with gel to offer better cooling. Like open-cell designs, gel is better for regulating body temperature but has a firmer feel than open cell.
Best for: Hot sleepers who want greater support.
These types of mattresses are made up of a traditional spring layer on the bottom topped with a layer of memory foam. They offer the pressure relief of memory foam yet have the while classic feel of a sprung mattress.
Best for: Those looking to switch from spring to foam for the first time.
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