Best Cheap Mattress
Jake Comfort | Updated: April 2, 2021
If you are looking for a new mattress, you are in luck. The online mattress industry has taken off and competition has skyrocketed. Prices have fallen rapidly because of the new competition, making it easier to get a high-quality mattress than ever before. As of 2020, a memory-foam queen mattress was priced at $1,050 on average. We looked at hundreds of mattress brands and narrowed down five brands that will give you the best bang for your buck. Below, you will find tips and tricks for finding a cheap mattress and a detailed overview of the five mattresses we selected.
Best Cheap Mattresses
|Mattress||Notes||Price (Queen)||Learn More|
|With a Nectar mattress, you get five layers of comfort at a very reasonable price. This highly regarded mattress brand was awarded “Best Overall Mattress” by USA Today in 2021. According to its website, 9 out of 10 customers would recommend a Nectar mattress to their friends or family.|
SALE: $1,199 $999
|Bear is one of the few mattress brands that target active individuals who want to recharge for the next day. There are three different mattresses with foam materials: The Bear Pro, Bear Hybrid, and Bear Mattress.|
|Puffy offers frequent sales that slash the cost of its mattresses. The mattresses sold by Puffy are breathable and suitable for all types of sleepers.|
|Every Nolah mattress is made in the United States with premium materials. Even the basic model has 7 inches of high-density base foam and a layer of deep supportive high-resilience foam. If you do not want a trial period, you can save an extra $100 on your mattress.|
|The Molecule mattress brand was created with the help of sleep doctors who designed the mattress using sleep trials and scientific data. Every mattress is made in the United States with eco-friendly materials.|
$1,299 + Get FREE sheets
What Determines the Cost of a Mattress?
We could go on for a while about what determines the cost of a mattress, but these are the biggest factors behind cost: country of origin, quality of the materials, and shipping cost (when built-in to the price of the mattress. You may also pay a premium for the brand name behind the mattress, but the level of new entrants to the market has helped to drive down costs overall.
Country of Origin
Mattresses made in the United States, Canada, and European countries cost more because of increased quality control standards and safety testing. On the other hand, mattresses made in China or Brazil (two countries that largely manufacture mattresses) cost less because of cheaper materials and less-regulated manufacturing environments. Thanks to the laws of supply and demand, the cost of American-made mattresses has been decreasing due to the increase in the number of suppliers recently entering the market.
Quality of Materials
Just like any other product, the lower the quality of materials, the cheaper the mattress. Companies that use 100% organic and natural materials will inevitably charge more for their mattresses. And not only is cost a price concern, but it is also a safety concern. Mattresses made with cheap memory-foam materials have been known to have carcinogens like benzene. According to the CDC, benzene exposure can cause headaches, irregular heartbeat, and confusion. When we select mattresses to review, we consider the materials in the mattress and avoid reviewing mattresses that have harmful materials.
This might seem like a no-brainer, but obviously, shipping costs impact the overall amount you pay for the mattress. Keep in mind, “free shipping” is not free. The price of shipping is built-in to the mattress. However, shoppers are willing to pay more when there are no extra shipping costs, and mattress brands are aware of this phenomenon. You will end up paying the least if you purchase a mattress that can ship compacted, such as a mattress in a box.
How to Find a Cheap Mattress
You do not have to wait until Black Friday to get a cheap mattress, there is always a deal going on! Most mattress brands will have a banner at the top of their website with any special promotions or coupon codes. It is also imperative to compare different brands because the price you see today might go down tomorrow.
Compare Different Brands
Since you are reading our article, you are off to a great start. Compare different brands to find the best deal on a new mattress. Many competing brands will offer similar promotions at the same time. Write down some of the most important features you are looking for in a mattress and shortlist four or five brands that have a mattress that meets your criteria. From there, look at the price and intangible benefits.
Consider the Intangible Benefits
You will save money in the long run if you purchase a mattress with a trial period and a strong warranty. Ideally, you will want a trial period that lasts at least three months so your body can adapt to the new mattress. You should also read the fine print and see who is responsible for the cost of returning the mattress. Moreover, you should also look closely at the warranty. Some mattress brands have a tiered warranty in which you must pay a percentage of the replacement cost after a certain number of years. And lastly, be sure to look for mentions of “durability” when you read customer reviews, because having to replace the mattress in a couple of years will surely hurt your budget.
The team at Puffy spent four years researching and developing its premium foam formulation. According to Puffy, the mattress is the “perfect sleep system” and is especially beneficial to those with back pain. Puffy mattresses are not mass-produced – the company crafts its mattresses in small batches to ensure the mattresses are delivered to customers in immaculate condition. Furthermore, Puffy’s Cooling Cloud Foam ™ holds CertiPUR-US certification and the mattresses company uses Variable Pressure Foaming (VPF), which is much cleaner for the environment.
Puffy sells three different mattresses: The Puffy Mattress, Puffy Lux Mattress, and Puffy Royal Mattress. Out of the three, the traditional Puffy mattress is the most affordable. While this model is more basic than the other two, it has various noteworthy features – a design suitable for all types of sleepers, a hypoallergenic cover, and firm core support that enhances spinal alignment. And every time you buy a mattress from Puffy, the brand makes donations to children in need of a bed. With the purchase of a Puffy mattress, you get a lifetime warranty and a 101-night sleep trial.
Nectar has both an online and brick-n-mortar presence, so you may have run into a Nectar product if you have visited mattress warehouses near you. Based out of New York City, the founders of Nectar created the company to start a sleep revolution – not just sell mattresses. Nectar believes that sleep is “magic” and is an incredible process in which the body and mind recharge. The brand strives to offer mattresses at affordable prices without using lower-grade materials. During the production process, the Nectar team employs rigorous quality control standards to ensure that the mattresses live up to customer’s expectations.
Although Nectar does not have an extensive line of products, it does offer two premium mattresses – the Nectar mattress and the Nectar Lush mattress. The Nectar mattress is the most affordable, with a queen starting at $799. At this competitive price tag, you get five layers of comfort, starting with the quilted cooling Tencel cover at the top. Right underneath the quilted cover, you will find a layer of gel memory foam and an adaptive response transition layer. The “core” of the mattress is a base layer made of memory foam that reinforces the support of the upper layers. And to complete the look of your mattress, there is a bottom cover that prevents mattress slippage.
Several athletes endorse Bear mattresses, including gymnastics coach Mckenna Kelly and triathlete Sarah Piampiano. Bear has been in the business for over 25 years and strives to offer a transparent customer experience. All the company’s mattresses have Celliant® technology, which is proven to promote better sleep and help you reenergize. Moreover, the Celliant® technology is long-lasting and will not wear out over time. According to the FDA, Celliant products are considered medical devices. In addition to its durability, Celliant also has a few other benefits – it promotes temperature regulation, increases body performance, and expedites recovery times.
Bear offers three different mattresses – the Bear mattress, Pro, and Hybrid. If you are on a budget, the Bear mattress is the cheapest option at a price of roughly $799 (with frequent discounts and promotions). This mattress has four layers, including a Celliant cover, cooling graphite-gel memory foam, responsive transition foam, and high-density support foam. The mattress’s foam responds and contours to every move your body makes. Furthermore, the open-cell foam design promotes airflow and keeps your body temperature regulated throughout the night. On a scale of 1 to 10, with 1 being very plush and 10 being very firm, the Bear Original falls at 7.1. According to Bear, most customers who own the Original model are back sleepers. Lastly, you get a 100-night risk-free trial with the purchase of a Bear mattress, to ensure that it is right for you.
You will not find Nolah mattresses anywhere but Nolah’s official website. The brand offers luxurious mattresses for ½ less than flagship mattresses you find at brick-n-mortar stores. Nolah is a self-described “technology-driven company” that refuses to use outdated materials such as memory foam and latex. And according to Nolah’s website, Nolah is not just a mattress company, it is a “way of life.” The mattresses sold by Nolah are available in all sizes, ranging from twin to California king. In addition to mattresses, Nolah sells adjustable bases, AirFiber pillows, and mattress protectors. All mattresses are made 100% in the United States.
Nolah does not boast a large collection of mattresses, only three: the Nolah Original 10”, Nolah Signature 12”, and Nolah Evolution 15.” All the mattresses have very good reviews, ranging from 4.7 for the Original to 4.9 out of 5 stars for the Evolution. For a cheap mattress, the Nolah Original 10” is the best option. This mattress costs $899 for a queen, and you finance it for as little as $75 per month with affirm. The Original mattress features 100% temperature neutral AirFoam and 4x better pressure relief compared to standard memory foam mattresses. Both the upper layers of the mattresses are supported by a 7” layer of high-density base foam. To make sure the mattress is right for you, Nolah offers a 120-night free trial, but there is an option to remove it to save $100.
From mattresses to pet beds, Molecule has a little bit of everything. One could confidentially say that Molecule is one of the most science-driven companies in the industry. Molecule’s team includes expert sleep doctors and neurologists who formulate the perfect mattresses. Many athletes endorse Molecule, including Alex Morgan, Russell Wilson, and Michael Phelps. In a sense, Molecule mattresses are somewhat like the mattresses sold by Bear – both products design their mattresses with athletes in mind.
The selection is very limited at Molecule. The company only sells two mattresses, the Molecule 1 and the Molecule 2 AirTEC. We recommend the Molecule 1 because a queen only costs $899 (compared to the Molecule 2 AirTEC queen that costs $1,299. With the Molecule 1, you still get advanced features such as a 3-zone RecoveryFLO adaptive support layer and an advanced cooling cover. The mattress has 3x the amount of airflow as traditional memory foam and holds CertiPUR-US certification. If you decide the mattress is not for you (which is unlikely), you can return it between the first 30 to 100 days of ownership.
You will end up with a high-quality and durable mattress regardless of which brand you end up choosing. These five mattress brands offer some of the best products for the price. When it comes to deciding, you should consider what you need for your body type and pain level. Say goodbye to your old coil mattress and replace it with one of these innovative and ultra-comfortable options without spending a fortune.