Helix vs Tuft and Needle Mattress
Check out our review comparing Helix and Tuft & Needle to find out which mattress is best!
Last Updated: September 9, 2020
While you’ve been shopping for a mattress, are you more focused on finding something universally comfortable and accommodating, but low in price? Or are you willing to spend a little more to get a mattress with the exact support and firmness level you want? In this comparison we’ll be discussing the main differences between Helix and Tuft & Needle, so you can decide which bed would be the best for you.
Before we get into the comparison, here are the main differences between Tuft & Needle and Helix Sleep:
- Price — For a queen mattress, Helix has an MSRP around $1,000 and Tuft & Needle retails around $600.
- Construction — Hybrid vs neutral foam. More on this below.
- Firmness — Helix has a range of different firmness and support levels while Tuft & Needle offers one model.
Now let’s get into the meat and potatoes of this comparison. There’s a lot more information you’ll want to consider before making a final decision.
Helix vs Tuft & Needle: Introduction
Helix and Tuft & Needle are both good mattresses, and we wouldn’t be able to declare any definite winner or loser because they’re so different. We’ll give you our verdict at the end of the post, but you’ll ultimately be deciding the best bed that’ll fit your preferences. If you find yourself wanting to know a little more about each bed, you can head over to our Helix mattress review or the Tuft & Needle review where we get a little more in-depth.
If you’re somebody who like their products personalized or taking the “which Game of Thrones character are you” type of quizzes, Helix has a short one minute Sleep Quiz on their website to help match you with one of their mattresses, based on your answers. They have nine models and all of them have a hybrid construction (foam and coils), but each one will fit some sleeper types better than others.
If you’re familiar with the bed-in-a-box market, then you know that both brands are up there with the top-dogs like Casper, Purple, and Leesa. Tuft & Needle will probably stand out the most to those who’re on a budget, and looking for a universally comfortable foam mattress that most people would really enjoy.
General Construction Of Helix’s Core Models
We don’t usually see a company offer as many mattress options as Helix does, so they’re definitely unique in that way. They have six core models which have pretty similar constructions, and one “special” mattress which we’ll dive into also.
The six core models include Helix moonlight, Dusk, Dawn, Sunset, Midnight, and Twilight. They’re all 12” thick, constructed with 8” pocketed coils and 4” of foam, but will differ in density and firmness.
The foams found inside are polyurethane foam (neutral foam), memory foam, Helix Dynamic Foam, and Durasense Foam (or support foam). Your mattress will include a combination of three or four of these foams, depending on the model you decide to go with.
The other three models are especially made for a particular purpose. First, there’s the Plus model which was designed for big and tall individuals. It contains special XL wrapped coils and higher-density foams for more support.
Then, there’s the Dual Balanced mattress and Dual Extra, which are split mattresses for folks who share a bed with a partner. A split mattress makes it so couples can choose how soft or firm they want their side of the mattress to be. The main difference between the Balanced model or the Extra model revolves around support.
IMPORTANT UPDATE: The “Dual” models have been discontinued. We recommend you look into Helix Dusk and Midnight if you’re interested in the most accommodating feel.
Different Firmness Options
The feel of the nine different mattress models are obviously going to slightly vary, but they all pretty much have a soft or neutral foam feel. Even though there’s memory foam inside Helix mattresses, the blend of the other foams neutralize the viscous feel of memory foam so you just get a soft, responsive, and slightly bouncy mattress.
As we’ve been mentioning, you have a range of firmness levels to choose from with Helix. That means back, stomach, side, and combo sleepers can all find a mattress that will suit them nicely. We rated the Moonlight and Sunset models as soft, the Dusk and Midnight models were rated a medium, and the Dawn and Twilight were given a firm rating.
With each firmness subcategory, you can also choose between more or less support in your mattress. This is where the Sleep Quiz comes in handy, because you don’t have to spend time researching every model to see which one you like best.
Helix Is More Suitable For Heavier Folks
Your weight has a large effect on how soft or firm a mattress is going to feel. We usually rate our beds based on the perspective of a medium-sized individual, but the heavier you are, the softer a mattress is going to feel.
Tuft & Needle will be a great mattress for petite to medium-sized folks, but we don’t think it’d be ideal for individuals over 250 lbs. We usually recommend heavy-set folks look into hybrid mattresses because coils make a bed more durable, supportive, and long-lasting. So if you have larger body type, we recommend you go with Helix Plus instead of Tuft & Needle, or take a look at our post on the best mattresses for heavy people.
Tuft & Needle Is More Affordable Than Helix
Tuft & Needle definitely has the edge when it comes to price. They’re pretty much the go-to budget mattress in the bed-in-a-box market. Before discounts, a queen size Helix mattress will run you about $1,000 and Tuft & Needle retails around $600. Helix is usually more aggressive with discounts though, since the price of Tuft & Needle is already pretty low. Still, Tuft & Needle usually comes out to be several hundred dollars cheaper than Helix.
UPDATE: Tuft & Needle Hybrid vs Helix
In late 2019, Tuft & Needle introduced their first coil mattress. Here’s a short video that covers how Helix compares to the Tuft & Needle Hybrid.
We hope the video above was helpful. The remainder of this comparison will focus on the Original Tuft & Needle mattress.
Materials Inside A Tuft & Needle Bed
Most bed-in-a-box mattresses come constructed with three or four layers inside, but Tuft & Needle keeps it simple with two. The first layer is constructed with a polyurethane (neutral foam) foundation, and the top layer is made from a material called T&N Adaptive Foam. It’s a proprietary foam, meaning a type of material the brand made themselves. This particular proprietary foam incorporates gel and graphite on the inside for improved temperature regulation.
As of August 2018, Tuft & Needle updated their slightly transparent mattress cover with a soft polyester and micro polyamide textured cover, because some customers were saying the old one made the mattress look a little cheap.
Like Helix, the cover isn’t machine washable. While there is a zipper and it’s technically removable, we don’t necessarily recommend you take it off. Sometimes it can be difficult to squeeze back on, and we don’t really see a point in taking it off if you aren’t able to put it through the wash.
Feel Of A Tuft & Needle Mattress
Similar to a Helix mattress, Tuft & Needle also has a soft neutral foam feel. It doesn’t have coils inside, so it’s not bouncy like Helix is, it just feels like a generally comfortable mattress. We’d even say Tuft & Needle has a slightly more underwhelming or “bland” feel, but in the best way possible.
Just let the numbers speak for themselves. About 95% of folks who purchase a Tuft & Needle mattress end up keeping it, so that alone tells you how comfortable mattress shoppers think it is.
On our scale from soft to firm, we rated Tuft & Needle a medium. If you were going to manufacture a mattress with only one firmness level, medium is going to be accommodating for the most amount of people.
It’s soft enough to provide pressure relief to side sleeper’s hips and shoulders, but firm enough to give back and stomach sleepers proper support. It’s also quick to respond to pressure like Helix is, so combo sleepers won’t have any trouble changing positions during their sleep.
As you can see, Helix and Tuft & Needle each have their own reasons why someone might choose one over the other. If you’re still having some trouble deciding which one would be the best for you, think about these questions.
- Do you want the choice between different firmness levels? Helix has a range of firmness and support levels.
- Are you a price conscious buyer? Tuft & Needle is more affordable than Helix.
- Are you a heavier individual? Helix has mattress options for all body types.
Hopefully you were able to choose a mattress after this post, or at least narrow down your choice. Be sure to check out our Mattress Deals page to see the latest promotions from the different online mattress brands.
The Ins And Outs Of Helix And Tuft & Needle’s Company Policies
When you purchase a bed-in-a-box online, a few things are for certain; you’ll get free shipping, a free trial period, and warranty coverage. The specifics vary with each brand, but in general, the industry standard is a 100-night trial, and a 10 year warranty period. Both Helix and Tuft & Needle follow these guidelines, but some brands offer a little more/less time.
What this means is, you’ll have 100 nights to try out both mattresses, so you can be confident your Helix or Tuft & Needle is a bed you want to invest in (because buying a mattress can really be an investment).
If you do decide to keep it, both companies will cover any manufacturing defects up to a decade.
Taking the term “bed-in-a-box” into consideration, you can probably assume your mattress will arrive at your front door in a box. How do you fit an entire mattress inside a box? Science! The mattress is rolled up and compressed, and when you pull it out you can watch it quickly inflate to the size of a normal bed. However, you’ll want to give it another 24-48 hours to fully puff up to its intended size, and off gas after it was inside a cardboard box for several days.