best firm mattress reviews

Best Firm Mattress Reviews

A list of the top rated hard beds for back, stomach, side sleepers, heavy individuals, and people with lower back pain

Many of the hard mattresses on the market today are very comfortable, and don’t sacrifice luxury. On this list are the best medium firm mattresses, extra firm mattresses, and beds that include memory foam.
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Allswell is an affordable mattress that's extra firm for individuals with lower back pain. If you want an ultra firm mattress, Allswell Hybrid is a nice option, especially if you like a faint memory foam feel.
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An affordable, medium firm mattress that can accommodate all sleepers, including heavier side sleepers. Compared to other beds on this list, it's a cheap mattress considering it is an actual bed in a box. For the smaller sizes, you can get a bed for under $500.
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Heavy Person Pick$100 Off


The Big Fig specifically advertises themselves as a bed made for a bigger figure. This is a very firm bed that could be good for back pain. Most people will likely be getting the king size or queen size mattress.
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The GhostBed Luxe is a cooling gel memory foam bed that's semi firm and can even handle some side sleepers.


  • Mattresses Considered100+

    Mattresses Considered

  • Brands 40+


  • Made the List 5

    the List

  • Number of Contributors 7

    Number of Contributors

Best Hard Mattress List Overview

So you’re looking for a firm mattress. Chances are you’re a back sleeper, or you’re a heavier individual, or maybe you have a health concern that calls for a hard bed to sleep on. Back in the day, a firm mattress meant that you had to have an innerspring coil mattress on top of box springs. Think of your grandma’s old mattress in her guest bedroom, or your dorm bed. But now, with all of the amazing new mattress technology like latex or even Purple beds, you have a wide range of options to choose from, meaning you no longer have to sacrifice comfort for a firm mattress.

You might notice some consistencies in this post, such as all of these beds will rank as a medium-firm to firm on our firmness scale, all are going to be best mainly for back and stomach sleepers, and all should be accommodating for heavier folks. None of these beds will be the best options for side sleepers, as they need a soft, pressure relieving surface to accommodate for their hips and shoulders when on their side. In this post, we’ll explain which are the best firm or hard mattresses, and why.

Allswell Luxe Hybrid Mattress


  • Those looking for a traditional innerspring feel
  • All body types
  • Couples
  • People looking to spend less than $750


  • Folks who want a traditional memory foam feel
  • Individuals who want a super responsive bed

The Allswell Luxe Hybrid is probably the firmest bed on this list. It’s also fairly new to the mattress scene and backed by one of the world’s largest retailers, Walmart. This hybrid mattress is constructed with pocketed coils and a memory foam top layer. Some Slumber Yard team members have compared the feeling of this bed to that of laying on a bed of grass, because there’s a thin layer of cushion before the firm ground, or in this case, individually wrapped coils.

The responsiveness of this bed is about a medium, so you’ll find that the bed doesn’t immediately bounce back after applying pressure, but you most likely won’t get any of that stuck-in-the-mud feeling while switching positions. Also, the firmness keeps you more on top of the bed instead of down in it, so you’ll almost never heat up.

allswell mattress review stomach sleeper
Extra firm for back and stomach sleepers

The extreme firmness combined with the coils in this bed make it suitable for all body types. Of course, this bed is best for back and stomach sleepers only, because it’s so supportive. Combo sleepers will be fine if they only switch between these two positions. This bed is much too firm for side sleepers, and won’t provide the pressure relief they need for their hips and shoulders.

Cocoon By Sealy


  • Those who like a dense memory foam feel
  • All body types
  • Couples
  • Folks on a tight budget


  • Those who like some bounce to their bed
  • Folks who dislike memory foam

The Cocoon Classic mattress comes with a Soft option and a Firm option. Cocoon describes their Soft option as feeling like you’re more “in the bed,” compared to their Firm option where you’ll feel more like you’re “on the bed.” We can agree with this statement. While both models are on the firmer end of our scale, for the sake of this post we’re talking specifically about the Firm option.

The Cocoon has a firm memory foam feel, and we like the soft cover. But what we like most about this bed is that it’s a steal of a deal. A queen size will only set you back around $800, and we usually will have a coupon code for you so you can save even more. Check the discount box on the right hand side of the screen to see what sort of savings you can score.

cocoon classic mattress review back sleepers
Firm memory foam feel

Anyway, the memory foam on this mattress has slow responsiveness, so you’ll see an indent for a couple of seconds after pressure is applied, but you only slightly get a stuck-in-the-mud feeling because of its medium-firm firmness level.

Usually, we don’t recommend 10” all-foam mattresses for all body types, but because this one is so firm and the memory foam is so dense, we think it should be fine. Just make sure you’re a back or stomach sleeper. If you’re a combo sleeper, spend very little time on your side and make sure you don’t mind the slight stuck-in-the-mud feeling.

Big Fig Mattress


  • Those who want a pillow top feel
  • All body types
  • Hot sleepers
  • Couples


  • Budget shoppers
  • Those who move frequently (this is a big and heavy bed)

Big Fig is a mattress brand that advertises as “the mattress for a bigger figure,” and actually comes with a foundation. The bed itself is 13” tall and made with individually wrapped coils, polyurethane foam, and gel infused latex. Latex is a bouncy and durable foam material made from the sap of rubber trees, and is hypoallergenic. You can read more about it here. It also helps to keep the bed super responsive and comfortable.

We rated this bed as a medium-firm to firm on our firmness scale. This mattress will be fine for any body type, but considering the price, this might be too much bed for petite individuals who can get away with a thinner, all-foam mattress.

big fig mattress foundation
The Big Fig mattress comes with a free foundation

This bed is great for back, stomach, and combo sleepers, as long as they spend very limited time on their sides. We also noticed this bed sleeps cool. It has some cooling technology in the cover, which hot sleepers will appreciate. A downside of Big Fig is that this is a huge mattress that’s difficult to setup and white glove delivery costs an extra $99 fee.

GhostBed Luxe Mattress


  • Those who want a very firm memory foam feel
  • Hot sleepers
  • Couples
  • All body types


  • Anyone who likes some bounce to their bed
  • College students looking for the cheapest option

The GhostBed Luxe is for those of you who tend to sleep hot, and are looking to cool down. This bed uses gel memory foam with a mix of a Japanese cooling fiber, giving you a “GhostHug” feel (a cold memory foam hug). Heavier folks will probably get that “GhostHug,” but average sized individuals might not because the lighter you are, the less you sink into the material.

Although this is a firm bed, a medium-firm to firm on our scale, there’s still slow responsiveness, which means it takes a second or two for the foam to regain shape when weight is removed from the spot, which might make switching sleep positions more difficult.

ghostbed luxe mattress review stomach sleepers
The GhostBed Luxe is cool-to-the-touch

The GhostBed Luxe is going to be accommodating for heavy folks because it’s a thicker bed made with quality materials, and of course the firmness provides additional support. We also think this bed will be great for back and stomach sleepers, and combo sleepers will be fine as long as they sleep mostly on their back and stomach. A little bit of side sleeping is okay with this one, but don’t get mad at us if you wake up with a dead arm from lack of pressure relief.

Review Team

Jeff Rizzo

Jeff Rizzo

Combo Sleeper

Dillon Payne

Dillon Payne

Combo Sleeper


McKenzie Dillon

Combo Sleeper


JD Christison

Combo Sleeper

Getting A New Mattress

Changing mattresses can be difficult, especially when switching from a soft mattress to a firm one. Your body might need anywhere from several days to a full month to adjust to a new sleeping surface. But many times, these changes will be better for you in the long run. Having a sagging or worn out mattress can lead to issues with the spine, breathing, and blood flow. They can also just negatively affect your night’s sleep, which can cause issues with how you perform during the day.

The process of finding a new mattress in general can sometimes seem daunting. Your bed should be an investment in your life for the next 10-15 years, a happy place, and where you spend about a third of your life sleeping.

Mattresses are also a costly item, being anywhere from $200 to over $1,000 (depending on size and quality). We wish we could tell you plain and simple what the best mattress is to buy, but there are too many factors involved. Making sure you do your research on your specific needs regarding how you like to sleep is very important before taking the leap and purchasing a new mattress.

Why Trust Us

Here at the Slumber Yard, we literally have a room piled full of mattresses that we test out on a daily basis. We have a complete spectrum of beds, ranging from college student affordable to almost over-the-top luxurious. We have tested poly foam beds, memory foam beds, latex beds, beds with coils, and more. We think about things like whether or not there’s enough edge support for couples. Will this bed sleep hot, or cool? Is this too much for my child’s twin mattress? We take all the guesswork out of the equation for you, because we’re basically mattress nerds.

How We Selected This List

We have a firmness scale here at the Slumber Yard to help categorize the firmness level of every mattress we test. It makes things easier for both us and you. Our scale ranges from soft, to medium-soft, to medium, to medium-firm, and finally, firm. All of the beds on this list have been rated either a medium-firm or firm. Please keep in mind that firmness is a term dependent on body weight, which we explain later in this post, but we have a wide range of Slumber Yard team members in all different body shapes and sizes, which helps us find a median place on the firmness scale for each bed.

Who Is A Firm Mattress Best For?

There are usually some specific qualifications for people who tend to seek out a hard mattress. First is that you’re possibly a back or stomach sleeper. Back and stomach sleepers need a firm surface that won’t let their head, hips, or shoulders sink into the mattress too much, which would cause the spine to curve or arch. Back and stomach sleepers need to keep their spine in neutral alignment, which can prevent back issues and waking up with soreness. We notice that back sleepers typically like a firmer surface, and then stomach sleepers might need a little bit more cushion, like a pillow top.

Another reason you may want a firmer bed is that you might be a heavier individual. Firmness is a relative term to weight, which can make things tricky if you’re either much heavier (250 lb+) or much lighter (100 lb-). Heavier individuals tend to sink into a mattress deeper, because they’re displacing more weight into it. This makes the bed feel softer for them. If you’re a heavier individual who sleeps on their back or stomach, or might just prefer a very firm bed in general, it can be more difficult for you to find what you’re looking for.

The last reason for wanting a harder sleep surface is that you might have a medical condition that requires a firm mattress every night. Whether that has to do with spinal issues, breathing issues, or something else, always consult with your doctor before making a final decision and purchasing a new bed.

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