If you’re on a tight budget, buying a new mattress can be intimidating. Most foam, innerspring, and hybrid mattresses (part coil and part foam) cost more than $1,000—out of reach for a lot of people. Although you can find countless cheaper mattresses online these days, many are uncomfortable, could sag after a few months, and might seem like a waste of money in the end.
We initially considered nearly two-dozen foam, innerspring, and hybrid mattresses that cost less than $400 for a queen. Then we tested nine finalists in our New York City office and slept on the top five contenders for at least a week each. After all that, we think the Zinus Cooling Copper Adaptive Hybrid Mattress is the best bed in the bargain bin.
The Copper Adaptive Hybrid mixes springiness and a classic memory-foam feel to create a substantial, comfortable mattress that doesn’t come across as cheap. However, its motion isolation and edge support are just middle of the pack.
*At the time of publishing, the price was $350.
Of all the sub-$400 mattresses we tested, the 12-inch Zinus Cooling Copper Adaptive Hybrid Mattress has the most balanced feel, combining a classic memory-foam sink in the top layer with slight springiness from the coil layer. Squarely medium-firm, this mattress should appeal to back-, stomach-, and side-sleepers, making it one of the most versatile cheap models we’ve tried. In both office and home tests, the Cooling Copper Adaptive Hybrid was our top pick—by a significant margin. This mattress also comes with a generous, 100-night free trial (when purchased from Zinus) and a 10-year limited warranty.
With a supportive, firmer feel, the Green Tea Memory Foam may appeal to back-sleepers. This mattress has good motion isolation and edge support, but it may not be as durable as our other picks.
*At the time of publishing, the price was $321.
On the firmer side of medium-firm, the 12-inch all-foam Best Price Mattress Green Tea Memory Foam is a good option for people who sleep on their back or prefer firmer mattresses. The sink is more subtle than with other memory-foam mattresses we tested, but you still feel slightly nestled in. The Green Tea Memory Foam mattress also offers solid edge support. However, its foam densities and overall lighter weight suggest it may be less durable than our other under-$400 picks. Best Price Mattress doesn’t offer a free trial period, but this mattress does come with a 10-year limited warranty.
The soft foam top of the Classic Brands mattress made for a very comfortable sleep, but it also raised durability concerns.
*At the time of publishing, the price was $315.
One of the softest cheap mattresses we tested, the 12-inch all-foam Classic Brands Cool Gel Memory Foam Mattress should provide the pressure relief side-sleepers need and also appeal to people who like a more cushioned, plusher feel. Softer than the other cheap foam or hybrid mattresses we tested for this guide, this mattress also feels much more luxurious. However, its cushy, looser-feeling top raised concerns about durability, and its motion isolation and edge support aren’t as good as those of our other picks. Any trial period will come from the third-party retailer, and the mattress comes with a 10-year warranty.
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