Best Mattress for Heavy People
Jake Comfort | Updated: May 1, 2019
There are plenty of elements of mattress shopping that can make things harder, but how much you weigh shouldn’t go on that list. Heavier sleepers have certain needs when it comes to mattresses that might not matter as much to lighter sleepers. The good news is that many of the things that make a mattress great for thinner people also make them great for heavier individuals, so there are plenty of wonderful mattresses on the market right now that heavier individuals can get a good night’s sleep from.
This guide will cover the different factors that heavier sleepers should be sure to take into account when shopping for a new mattress. Finding a mattress with the right mix of qualities can be tedious for anyone, so we’ve also included a handy chart at the end to give you a good overall idea of what mattress we think are best for heavy sleepers.
Finally, we feel that we should note that the terms we use to describe the folks this article is intended to help are being used to refer to the overall body weight of a person, and we’re referring to sleepers over 200 lbs. We recognize that not everyone who weighs more than 200 lbs is overweight, and that someone can be overweight while weighing less than 200 lbs. Our objective is not to support or engage in any harmful or negative associations with the term we use, and we recognize that all bodies are beautiful.
The first thing that heavier sleepers should consider is the thickness of the mattress. You’ll want to find a mattress that is at least 12” thick or more to get the best night’s sleep. Granted, there are some exceptions to this guideline, especially if the mattress in question has a thicker than average support layer or is designed to offer a greater amount of deep compression support.
Deep compression support, after all, is the reason you should be looking for a thicker mattress. Heavier sleepers create more pressure of the mattress, so a thinner mattress might not be able to provide the support or comfort that you deserve.
The thickness itself isn’t the only thing that matters. Nearly all mattresses are made with layers these days, and understanding how thick each layer is while also understanding what function that layer serves is important. For example, a 16” mattress with a 10” comfort layer still won’t offer the deep compression support you need.
The best way to determine what kind of firmness you need is by what kind of sleeper you are. We have a guide that gives you a good idea of what firmness you should look for relative to your sleeping position. Most heavier sleepers will want to increase our recommendations in that guide by a bit, as many heavier sleepers will want a mattress that is medium to medium-firm. On a scale from 1-10, with 10 being the most firm and 1 being the least firm, heavier sleepers will want to look in the 4-7 range.
It’s also important to note that heavier sleepers experience more sinkage and hug from a mattress than lighter sleepers do. As a result, a firmness that is rated as a 7 may feel closer to a 5 for a heavier sleeper. In general, sleepers over 250 lbs will get 1-2” of additional sinkage from any given mattress.
Edge support is important for heavier sleepers because strong edges will help prevent sagging or collapsing while you’re sleeping near the edges of the mattress. Moreover, mattresses are used for more than sleeping, and more edge support is best for things like sitting or sex.
One of the biggest challenges for heavier sleepers is sleeping cool. Foam mattresses tend to sleep warmer than hybrid or spring mattresses, but many of the more advanced foam mattresses use different technologies to solve this problem.
We’ll briefly go over the different types of mattress so you can have the best idea of what kind of mattress you should consider buying given the mattress qualities you’re looking for.
Memory foam is a great option for larger sleepers because of the flexibility in the amount of firmness you can get from a mattress, and because these mattresses provide support in a way that helps to relieve pressure points and offer consistent support.
Memory foam mattresses can sleep hotter than other mattress, so look for one with an open cell structure, gel, or layers designed for cooling.
Latex offers many of the benefits of memory foam mattresses with better bounce and cooling, as it is more resistant to heat absorption. Moreover, latex mattress tend to produce less contour than memory foam, which can help to balance the sinkage.
For heavier sleepers, innerspring mattresses can be great or they can be terrible. Low quality innerspring mattresses result in pressure points because of the way they’re constructed. Coil-on-coil options are best here, offering good deep compression support and more consistent support overall.
Hybrid mattress use a combination of materials and construction types. They offer a number of features, like better cooling because of the airflow that coils offer, or a series of different foam layers to get more bounce and better deep compression support.
Best Mattresses for Heavier Sleepers
|Loom & Leaf||Made from memory foam and all-natural materials. Offers a balanced hug and contour. Comes in two levels of firmness||300 lbs||$1,099||Review|
|Leesa||Avena foam and memory foam construction. 10” depth but has a thicker comfort layer and one of the best values.||300 lbs||$865||Review|
|Helix Sleep||Constructed from responsive poly foam and microcoils. Offerse a responsive mattress with good cooling and bounce. Can be customized to order||350 lbs||$945||Review|
|Amerisleep||Uses advanced memory foam and is thicker than most at 14”. Provides a soft feel without sacrificing support||450 lbs||$2,299||Review|
|Purple||Uses unique polymer comfort later and polyfoams. Thinner than most at 9.5” but has thicker comfort layer. Best for cooling and responsiveness||300 lbs||$999||Review|
|Alexander Hybrid||Hybrid construction uses pocketed coils and foam. Best edge support and good for cooling and bounce||350 lbs||$999||Review|
|Saatva||Made with coil-on-coil hybrid design. Good edge support and comes in 3 levels of firmness||300 lbs||$999||Review|
|WinkBeds||Constructed with coil-on-coil design. Super thick and lots of deep compression support||300 lbs||$1,049||Review|
|Sapira||Pocketed coil hybrid design. Offers good edge support and cooling qualities||350 lbs||$1,375||Review|
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*These weight limits refer to one person sleeping on one side of the bed. The overall weight capacity of the mattress is usually double the number listed. Most mattress can support more weight, but the guide here gives the limit to what the manufacturer will cover under warranty.
** Price is for a queen mattress
Savvy buyers will notice that the mattresses we selected contain some common elements, including
- All are at least 12” thick, with the two exceptions noted above
- Offer a greater amount of deep compression support
- Fall from a 4-7 on the firmness scale, with 10 being the most firm and 1 is the least firm. Many of them come in multiple firmness levels
- Offer excellent neck, spine, and lower back support
- Provide a cooler sleeping experience than other mattresses of similar construction/price
- Work with an adjustable foundation