Whether you’re a side-sleeper or back-sleeper, prefer firm or soft, purchasing a mattress is not a one-size-fits-all deal. But on one thing all can agree: Comfort is key. Consumer Reports has tested mattresses. Here’s what our reviewers think of its “top-rated” picks.
Update 1/16/2014: New year, new list! Check out the 2014 update on how the Consumer Reports top-rated mattresses match up to Viewpoints reviews.
Consumer Reports earlier this year released its list of top-rated mattresses, and we compared its ratings with the opinions of Viewpoints reviewers to see how its reviews and the reviews of our best mattresses match up.
Top-rated mattresses: Consumer Reports vs. Viewpoints
The Serta Perfect Sleeper is one of the best rated innerspring mattresses by Consumer Reports, which scored it highly for back sleeping and stabilization. Viewpoints reviewers, however, have mixed feelings about the pillow top mattress. A mattress set can cost anywhere from $600 to $3000. Based on 115+ consumer reviews, Viewpoints rates it as just average.
Pro: Perfectly Firm
“It’s firm, but not too firm. The same goes for the plus top. It’s plush but not to the point you are sinking in without support. I must say this was long ovrdue.”–Jillian44, Reviewer since 2009
“The mattress is very firm and comforable for a great night’s rest, which is important for a stress-free day. The mattress sits up high for making the bed very easy and less bending. I would recommend this mattress to anyone who is shopping for a new mattress!!!” –HeatherJebokji, Reviewer since 2010
Con: Doesn’t maintain shape
“I have owned a Serta Perfect Sleeper firm mattress for five years now. This mattress is what can only be described as “the pits.” It was not so bad at first, but at the moment, it definitely has a big ‘ol dip in the middle that my husband and I keep rolling into. We both wake up EVERY day with sore, achy backs/necks.” –Dudewhatever, Reviewer since 2008
“For the first few years, they were all they’re advertised to be. However, we soon found that we were turning them over, quite often, as they had acquired a ‘dip’ on one side. Also the board attached to the box-springs of the bed broke in two! The warranty (on this $3,000 outfit) was next to nothing! Serta refused to replace the faulty mattresses- which SHOULD have lasted longer than six years (at that price) and the bed itself was repaired at OUR cost. I doubt that we would every consider a ‘Serta’ again. Poor quality.”–seewhat, Reviewer since 2009
Sealy Brand Traditional Mattresses fare better on Viewpoints, as well as secured a spot in Consumer Reports’ innerspring and memory foam top-rated categories.
“I have have bought 4 Sealy Firm Mattresses for house and I have never been more impressed of not only the firmness but how it stays firm years later. Not only do I, who has a bad back but my husband and children love their Sealy’s. Our beds are going on a strong 10 years and still holding true and will definitely purchase Sealy in the future.” –pafm1964, Reviewer since 2011
Both Viewpoints reviewers and the expert testers at Consumer Reports agree that Sleep Innovations Novaform Memory Foam Mattress is a good value. At around $900, the price is much more affordable than some designer alternatives. The 12-inch, 93-pound queen size mattress has a layer of gel-infused foam and rated best for back sleeping with a measured medium firmness and excellent durability.
Pro: Inexpensive alternative
“We have tested a lot of mattress under the process of buying a new one. It easily compares to a higher end mattresses that are priced around 3 to 4 grand. The memory foam is of high quality and is ideal for side sleepers. It contours and supports the body very well. It’s great for couples or sharing bed if one person is a light sleeper. Because if one person is twisting and turning in the bed, it would not disturb other person lying next to.” –Meera9, Reviewer since 2012
“We found a lot of the foam temp or therapeutic beds were way out of our price range. we wanted to spend any where from $500 to $800 on our bed…We figured it’s an investment in our backs. We found the Novafoam Memory bed at costco in our price range and we LOVE IT!!!” –noellebilly, Reviewer since 2009
“The Novaform mattress lasted less than a year. It was very comfortable at first, but within months began to sag considerably. Now I prefer the sofa to the bed! I only weigh 125 pounds and rarely jump on the bed Overall I am very disappointed with the Novaform mattress. I am, however, very grateful that the store is allowing me to return the mattress for a full refund.” –trying2help, Reviewer since 2008
BedInABox.com PacBed Memory Foam Mattress is also one of the most highly rated mattresses on Viewpoints, as many of our 338 reviewers describe the mattress as a total package, both comfortable and a great value. Most sets cost between $500 and $1,000:
“Despite the fact that I would pay anything to own this bed, the price is totally affordable. You must buy this mattress; don’t let money be an issue. This mattress is an investment. Ever since I bought it, I have slept longer and better, and my improved nights have led to improved days. This mattress is the best thing that I have bought in a long time, and I couldn’t be happier with it.”–Spencercg, Reviewer since 2011
The ratings on Consumer Reports matched up fairly well with opinions on Viewpoints. However, because experience with mattresses varies person-to-person, it is still best to try the mattress out yourself if you can, thoroughly read warranties and, of course, consumer reviews.
Editor’s note: If you have professional experience with mattresses, Viewpoints is recruiting experts in priority product categories to write for our blog. Check out this overview of the Viewpoints Category Expert Program, including qualifications, compensation and how to apply.