|AT A GLANCE||PRICING||HEADLINE|
|Soft Memory Foam||See on Amazon||Soft memory foam mattress that provides ample pressure relief. It's also one of the most affordable beds out there.|
|Firm Memory Foam||See on Amazon||An affordable bed-in-a-box mattress with a firmer memory foam feel.|
|Safe Pick||Check Current Offers||Could be the most popular bed on Amazon. The Tuft & Needle mattress has a neutral-foam feel that accommodates all sleeper types.|
|One of the most affordable natural all-latex beds on the market.|
|Washable Cover||$150 Off + Gift|
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|Yogabed is a really comfortable, accommodating mattress—but the best part (at least for parents) is that it has a removable and machine washable cover.|
|The only hybrid mattress on this list. A great option for heavier kids.|
|Sports Lover||BearMattress.com||Affordable bed-in-a-box for kids that love soccer.|
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In this post, we’re going to break down all the little details that go into choosing the perfect bed for your kid. You want to make sure Jr. is comfortable all night long, but you don’t want to break the bank on a bed they’ll grow out of, so what’s a reasonable price for a child’s mattress? And with all these mattresses arriving in boxes and wrapped in plastic, what goes into making them? Are they safe, chemically speaking? And kids spill stuff. Can you toss the cover in the wash or will you have to spot clean?
There’s a lot to consider before making a mattress-sized purchase and we’re here to help you go through the list and check each box. We’ll discuss materials, feel, certifications, and anything else you can think of (plus a few things you probably haven’t thought of).
Here at the Slumber Yard, we’ve made beds our business, and therefore, we’ve tested literally dozens upon dozens of mattresses. Seriously, our office is like a mattress graveyard. Or something happier… like somewhere mattresses go to relax and make friends. And after testing the lot, we’ve put together a list of our current top picks for your kiddos.
This is one of the bestselling beds on Amazon. It comes in 6”, 8”, 10”, and 12” sizes, which allows you to select the thickness of the mattress based on your child’s age and weight. The Zinus Green Tea mattress is extremely budget friendly, at a few hundred dollars for a queen mattress (and even cheaper if you get the 6” thickness). This is ideal if your child could be hitting a growth spurt sometime soon.
This mattress will work on a variety of bed frames and foundations. It has a stereotypical memory foam feel, so if you don’t think you’re kiddo will like the feel, try something with more of a neutral, soft foam feel.
Like Zinus, Lucid is another mattress that’s extremely popular on Amazon, and has a more traditional memory foam feel. It’s about the same price as the Zinus Green Tea mattress, but it comes in multiple firmness levels, including one that is noticeably firmer.
It’s a great option for kids who sleep exclusively on their back or stomach. If your child tends to sleep on their side, make sure to look into the plush-medium option. All in all, though, if what you’re looking for is a firm bed that’s affordable, you’re in the right place.
Tuft & Needle is the quintessential “good value” mattress. It’s only comprised of two layers of foam, but it’s a durable and comfortable mattress.
Tuft & Needle will work well for all types of sleepers, although we think it’s a little better for back and stomach sleepers. And even though the mattress is made out of foam, it doesn’t have any of that stuck-in-the-mud feeling since it does not use memory foam.
Overall, Tuft & Needle just feels like a soft slab of foam. It’s one of those beds that nearly everyone acknowledges as being comfortable and we think it’s a great choice for kids.
Spindle is a 100% all-natural latex bed, so it makes sense that it feels like a traditional latex bed. The bed is hypo-allergenic, and comes with an organic cotton topper, so it’s great for people with allergies.
This bed is one of the most affordable latex options out there—but know that the bed arrives in several boxes, and you will need to put it together yourself, as you can see in the video below.
The Spindle mattress is available in multiple firmness levels. You can choose between Soft, Medium, Firm, and Extra Firm, although chances are you’ll be selecting the Medium option since that’s able to accommodate all types of sleepers.
The bottom line with Spindle is that most families will end up passing on it due to the “assembly needed” feature, but if you know that you want a latex bed for you kiddo, it’s very likely the best value out there.
If you watched the video above, you may have noticed we originally included the Eve mattress. However, as of August 2018, it looks like the company is starting to pull out of the US market. Don’t worry, though, we have a worthy replacement for you—YogaBed.
YogaBed is a great option for parents who want a bed that can be easily cleaned. Perhaps your child is in the process of going through potty training, or has accidents during the night. While most beds are not designed to sustain washing, YogaBed is one of the few beds with a removable, machine washable cover.
YogaBed is a great choice for a variety of sleep styles. The mattress has a soft, neutral-foam feel that is comfortable for kids who sleep on their back, stomach, or switch between a combination of positions. It wouldn’t be our favorite bed if your son or daughter sleeps exclusively on their side, but if they rotate to their side here and there, Yogabed will be just fine. This is a really nice mattress that gets a lot of things right. We think it will last many, many years for your kiddos.
Brooklyn Signature is a great option for those kids who enjoy bouncing on the bed. Its springy, bouncy feel should sustain prolonged stress from little feet hopping up and down. This bed comes in multiple firmness options, allowing you to select the Soft model if your child is a strict side sleeper, Medium model if they sleep in a variety of positions, and Firm if they heavily favor their back/stomach.
We see the Signature mattress as being best for older children because the cover is non-removable, so messes will be more difficult to clean. Also, since the bed uses coils, it will be durable and able to accommodate pretty much any child.
UPDATE: The Bear MLS mattress is no longer available. You can see the updated full line of mattresses on Bear’s website.
The Bear MLS bed is the perfect mattress for young sports fans because the entire mattress is covered in Major League Soccer logos! Your child will almost certainly get a kick (pun absolutely intended) out of sleeping on the MLS.
Keep in mind that the mattress isn’t very thick, however, so it’s mostly ideal for smaller children. Having said that, it’s fine for moms and dads, too, just not as their primary mattress. The Bear MLS bed is also best for back, stomach, and combination sleepers. It wouldn’t be our first choice for side sleepers, but as long as your kiddo doesn’t always, 100% of the time sleep on their side, they’ll be just fine.
We have reviewed many, many mattresses—way more than a baker’s dozen. So many beds. We have a system for conducting our mattress reviews to make sure we cover all the categories for each bed we try. We consider everything from firmness and feel to motion transfer and support.
Our methods may not be technically scientific, but they are practical and intended to reflect how the average, non-sleep-scientist consumer will experience the mattress in question. We always consider how each variously-sized member of our Slumber Yard team feels about the bed and make sure to include disclaimers about how your experience may differ based on your body type, sleeper type, and just plain ole’ personal preferences.
For this list, specifically, we thought critically about what’s important for a child’s bed and how the requirements differ from what you’d look for in a mattress for adults.
We’ve given you our list of top contenders and a bit about why each one made the list, but we thought we’d also give you some tools to narrow down the options or maybe figure out if something else you’re considering will work for your kids. Below, we’ve broken down the categories that we consider when deciding whether a certain mattress is the right mattress.
Like most of things you buy for your children, their mattress shouldn’t be as expensive as yours. They’re kids and they’re still growing and just like their shoes, their mattress may not be the right fit for their body once they’ve hit a growth spurt or puberty. With that in mind, we wouldn’t recommend spending more than $500-$700 after discount. Be sure to check out our Mattress Deals page for coupons and discounts.
You can find a lot of great options that come in below that $500-$700 budget. And if your kiddo is still learning their multiplication tables, “below” is probably where you should be looking. The higher end of the price range is more reasonable if you’re thinking they’ll be able to use this bed right up until it’s time for them to sleep on a plastic-covered college dorm mattress for the next 4 (let’s be real—5.5) years.
Not all mattress companies produce a full range of sizes, so before you get your heart set on a certain brand, make sure they actually sell twin, twin XL, or full size mattresses. Because what kid needs to sleep on a queen or bigger? But also because bed frames made for kids’ bedrooms are going to be one of those three sizes. That includes bunk beds and trundles.
On average, an 8″ mattress will probably be just fine, but if your kid is heavier, you’ll want something with a little more support. In that case, look for a bed that’s at least 10″ thick. The extra few inches of mattress will not only provide some additional support, but also help it last a bit longer.
Of course, you want the mattress to be comfortable. For a child, that means you’ll need something a little softer. A firm bed is intended for people who need back support, for example, but for a kid, even if they’re a bigger kid, anything that’s “firm” is going to feel like a sidewalk. And, I mean, I know a lot of kids who can sleep anywhere, including a sidewalk, but that’s not what we’re going for with their bed.
That being said, not all mattress companies use the same language and not all of them clearly label a bed as “soft” or “firm.” In that case, you’ll want to look for the ILD (indentation load deflection). Here’s a breakdown of what those numbers mean:
Soft — less than 25 lb ILD
Medium — 25 to 30 lb ILD
Firm — over 30 lb ILD
So, generally speaking, you’ll want to aim for something around 27 lb ILD or less. Higher than that is merging into medium-firm territory.
With mattresses that you purchase online, there are basically two options in terms of what is used to construct the mattress—an all-foam bed or a hybrid/spring bed that uses both foam and coils. For a child, you probably don’t need coils. They aren’t heavy enough to need that much support or resistance, so you’ll want to look more at all-foam constructions. That means memory foam, which typically has a denser feel that softens over time and cradles your body, and latex foam, which has a more sponge-like feeling, and is bouncier and airier. Memory foam mattresses also tend to sleep a little warmer, while latex mattresses generally allows more airflow. So if your kid is a sweaty sleeper, you may want to look for a mattress with more latex foam. There are also poly and proprietary foam beds, which vary in feel by company, and are usually more affordable.
Now, we said a kid probably doesn’t need coils, but a spring bed might be right for you(r child) if the plan is to keep it for many, many years. Innersprings and pocketed coils are more durable over the long haul. So, if you have an 8th grader and this is the last time you’re buying them a bed (and whatever you get now is what they’ll be sleeping on when they’re home for the holidays at age 27) you might want to look into coil hybrid options.
In the mattress world, there are certain certifications that proclaim a product to be especially eco-friendly or all natural, etc.. When it comes to memory foam, specifically, you should look for GreenGaurd GOLD or CertiPUR-US certified beds. These certifications, among other things, ensure that the mattress will have little to no off-gassing. Off-gassing is that chemical-y smell that comes with a lot of padded furniture and especially mattresses. It usually sticks around for at least a day, sometimes much longer, and it can make kids sick. That’s not what you want from your mattress, nor what you want for your kid. In any case, it’s a good idea to let the mattress sit without putting sheets on it for several days to off-gas.
Most bed-in-a-box mattresses are a perfectly manageable weight (although there are a few exceptions, like Purple.2/3/4, which actually comes with people to set it up so you don’t throw out your back) and besides, you won’t be moving it around too much, anyway. But in the battle of getting your kids to make their bed, it helps if their mattress isn’t overly heavy.
Kids spill and have accidents, so of course, a machine washable cover is ideal. Unfortunately, there are only a couple mattresses that have removable, machine washable covers (Yogabed and Novosbed are two that come to mind right away). Others will require you to spot clean. And while that’s doable, it’s not all that convenient and even the best spot clean job doesn’t provide the same level of cleanliness confidence as a cycle through the washing machine.
As a work around, though, we suggest that you look into a machine washable mattress protector to go with the bed. That way, you can just pull it off and toss it in the wash when needed. You can find them all over the internet or in most stores that sell bedding products.
Most mattresses are super versatile in terms of compatible foundations or bed frames. The majority of mattresses can be put directly on the floor, on a box spring, a foundation, or a slatted bed frame. But rather than assume it’ll be fine and then being disappointed and having to exchange the mattress or get a new frame, you should always make sure to look at the FAQ section of the company’s website for more details.
SEE ALSO: Shop Popular Bed Frames On Amazon
It’s standard for the online mattress shopping industry to include free shipping, a 100-night risk-free trial period, free returns within that trial period, and a 10-year warranty should you keep the mattress. And because all of that is standard, you shouldn’t settle for anything less. In fact, some companies will give you even longer trial periods (we’ve seen up to a whole year) and much longer warranties (we’ve seen up to forever).
That trial period is important when buying a mattress online because you don’t get to go take it for a test snooze at your neighborhood mattress store. But with that trial period, you can rest easy knowing that if it’s not right, you can have it picked up for no charge and receive a full refund.