If you’re looking for a highly-rated firm mattress, chances are you’re a back or stomach sleeper, a heavier individual, or someone with a health concern that calls for a hard bed to sleep on. Luckily, we can help you find the best firm mattresses online for your needs or preferences. With all of the amazing new mattress technology, including Hyper-Elastic Polymer, you have a wide range of options, meaning you no longer have to sacrifice comfort for firmness. Whether you want the best extra firm mattress or you’re looking for a firm king mattress, you can find what you want in this helpful guide.
You might notice some consistencies in this post, such as all of these beds will rank as a medium-firm to ultra-firm on our firmness scale. All will be best mainly for people who favor their stomach or back and all should be accommodating for heavier folks.
Top 8 Firm Mattresses
- Best Extra-Firm Mattress – Plank
- Best Semi-Firm Mattress – Loom & Leaf
- Best Medium-Firm Mattress – Saatva
- Best Firm Memory Foam Mattress – Nectar
- Best Firm Mattress for Heavy People – Titan
- Most Comfortable Firm Mattress – Purple Hybrid
- Most Affordable Firm Mattress – Allswell Brick
- Best Firm Organic Mattress – Avocado
Best Firm Mattresses Review Video
Swipe to see why these made our list
Swipe to see why these made our list
Why These Made Our List
We use a firmness scale to help categorize the firmness level of every mattress we test. Our scale ranges from soft, to medium soft, to medium, to medium firm and finally, ultra firm. All of the beds on this list have been rated either a medium firm or extra firm. If you’re looking for the most supportive beds out there, check out our list of the Best Mattresses for Heavy & Obese People.
Compare the Best Firm Mattresses
BEST EXTRA-FIRM MATTRESS
Why Plank wins as best extra-firm mattress
Plank Mattress is an all-foam bed that lets you flip the mattress and enjoy a “soft” side or a “firm” side. In truth, the soft side is more around a medium-firm and the firm side is extra firm. This gives you two beds in one, and you can sleep on the side with the firmness you find most comfortable.
Plank’s best features
- We think the mattress is good for petite and average individuals who sleep on their back or stomach.
- In terms of price, the Plank is one of the more affordable mattresses on our list.
- Plank provides impressive edge support so that you will be very supported around the perimeter of the bed. This is ideal for couples who share a smaller bed.
Why we picked this bed
We put Plank on the list because it provides two firmness profiles in one mattress, making it versatile for back and stomach sleepers who need additional support. It also has a good value.
BEST SEMI-FIRM MATTRESS
Why Loom & Leaf wins as best semi-firm mattress
Loom & Leaf mattresses are all-foam and come in both a semi-firm and an extra-firm version. The semi-firm version would be good for anyone who likes a firm mattress, while the extra firm version is best for heavy people and back or stomach sleepers.
Loom & Leaf’s best features
- In Loom & Leaf’s thick construction, you can find a layer of laminated cooling gel meant to help regulate temperature, as it’s the same material found in hospital burn units! If you don’t like memory foam’s tendency to retain heat, this bed is a much better option.
- The layers of the mattress are wrapped in a quilted, organic cotton cover.
- Loom & Leaf’s memory foam mattress is perfect for relieving back pain.
Why we picked this mattress
It’s a luxury semi-firm mattress for those who love the slow responding feel of memory foam but hate how hot it sleeps. This thick foam mattress provides more support than your average all-foam bed, but it’s also able to provide some relief for those who sleep warm at night. It’s also one of the best extra firm memory foam mattresses if you go with that option.
BEST SEMI-FIRM MATTRESS
Why Saatva wins as best medium-firm mattress
The Saatva mattress has several firmness levels available. The two firmest make our picks for being top-rated firm mattresses. These beds are built with a dual coil system of individually wrapped coils and a steel coil base. A plush Euro-top that is responsive makes sure you never feel stuck like it can happen with even an extra firm memory foam mattress.
Saatva’s best features:
- The combination of foam and coils make the mattress suitable for all types of sleepers and body types, although most will do best with the medium-firm model because the other is extra firm.
- Saatva falls in the middle of the range for the mattresses we’ve included here in this list; a queen retails for about $1,575.
- The mattress is a solid option for all sleeper and body types.
Why we picked this bed
The various firmness options, extremely durable back-to-back coil construction and an affordable price point for a luxury mattress earned it a spot in our best firm mattress review.
The Nectar Original is one of the best mattresses in the market. The pressure-relieving memory foam of this bed slowly conforms to your body.
Why Nectar wins as best firm memory foam mattress
If you ask a memory foam lover, there’s nothing like the conforming, contouring feel of a good memory foam mattress. Our top pick for the best firm memory foam mattress is Nectar, and we think it provides that signature feel you’re expecting at a super affordable price. The mattress is also more supportive than your average foam bed, especially for side sleepers.
Nectar’s best features
- We rate the Nectar mattress to be around a medium-firm. It offers an ample amount of spinal support for back and stomach sleepers who need it for neutral alignment in their back.
- Wrapping the three layers of foam is a removable, quilted polyethylene cover. The cover’s cooling technology will quickly wick away superficial heat, and the cover is machine-washable. You won’t sleep cold, but it won’t warm up either, so it’s what we call temperature neutral.
- One of the best parts about the Nectar mattress is its price. A queen size retails for almost $1,200, but you can typically get it for around $800 after discounts.
Why we picked this bed
Nectar is an all-foam mattress about 12” thick, making it heftier than your typical bed-in-a-box mattress. Once you lay down, you sit on top of the mattress for about 4-5 seconds until you slowly feel the bed’s layers hug the curves of your body. We would compare it to the feel of a TempurPedic mattress, but it’s hundreds or even thousands of dollars cheaper than some TempurPedic models.
BEST FIRM MATTRESS FOR HEAVY PEOPLE
Why Titan wins as best firm mattress for heavy people
This bed is made for people who weigh over 250 lbs. As such, it is supportive and resilient, built with “TitanCaliber” coils. For heavy body types, it will be a comfortable semi-firm mattress. For petite to medium body types, Titan will likely be a little too firm.
Titan’s best features
- Titan is just slightly thicker than the average mattress-in-a-box at 11″. The 6’’ coil layer is followed by a comfort layer of 2’’ Titan Flex foam. The very top layer is 1’’ of memory foam. It also has a 2″ foam base under the coils.
- As a hybrid mattress that is made with support in mind, Titan is fairly priced. A queen mattress is under $1,100, something we can expect from a bed made by Brooklyn Bedding.
- The mattress is purposely designed to be extra firm to support your body correctly.
Why we picked this bed
The people at Titan wanted to make a quality mattress that suited sleepers over 250 lbs, and we think this accomplishes that. It has a durable, supportive construction and an affordable price tag for such a good firm mattress.
MOST COMFORTABLE FIRM MATTRESS
Purple Hybrid is a coil mattress that features a proprietary comfort layer called Hyper-Elastic Polymer. It’s a unique mattress that’s comfortable and great for hot sleepers.
Why Purple Hybrid wins as most comfortable firm mattress
The secret to the Purple Hybrid 2″, formally called the Purple 2, is its unique construction. It combines 7.5″ pocketed innerspring coils with a 2″ layer of the patented Hyper-Elastic Polymer. We like to think that the mattress is similar to a Dr. Scholl’s insole.
Purple Hybrid’s best features:
- Purple’s mattress is bouncy, responsive and gives you the feeling of being supportive and pressure relieving at the same time. It’s one of the best medium firm mattresses if you like the unique feel.
- The polymer of the bed will compress and conform to your body’s shape.
- The price is a little higher than the average firm mattress online but not egregious, considering how unique it is.
Why we picked this bed
We ultimately chose Purple Hybrid because it’s a unique mattress that’s comfortable and supportive with x-factor features that people love. If you are tired of the traditional bed (either innerspring or memory foam), this might be the mattress for you.
The Allwell Brick is a neutral-foam mattress with a quilted top layer, so any sleeper gets the comfort of memory foam without the traditional soft feeling of conventional memory foam.
Why Allswell Brick wins as most affordable firm mattress
Allswell is brought to you by Walmart, a brand that stresses affordability and good value. As such, you can expect the same sentiment from the Allswell Brick. It’s a firm hybrid mattress perfect for all back and stomach sleepers and side and combo sleepers, especially folks over 230 lbs. On a scale from soft to firm, we rated it around a medium-firm.
Allswell Brick’s best features
- It’s not as hard as a brick as its name may suggest, but it does provide a solid amount of support when you sleep on your back or stomach.
- This 3-layer mattress contains memory foam, but it doesn’t feel like a memory foam mattress. The quilted top cover on the bed neutralizes the dense memory foam feel, so instead, we think it feels more like neutral foam, similar to the original Allswell mattress.
Why we picked this bed
The Allswell Brick mattress isn’t just great because of its firm and supportive profile. One of the top reasons it made our best firm mattress list is because of its price accessibility. Prices for a queen-size mattress start at $675, making it the most affordable firm mattress on our list.
BEST FIRM ORGANIC MATTRESS
The Avocado Green Mattress is the most sought-after natural/organic mattress online. It’s supportive, comfortable, and constructed with high-quality materials.
Why Avocado wins as best firm organic mattress
One of Avocado’s most attractive features is the construction with all-natural and eco-friendly materials. It combines steel pocketed coils and certified organic latex foam and cotton that gives a firm yet comfortable feel. You can also find Avocado as a medium-firm mattress if you opt for the topper.
Avocado’s best features
- This mattress is viable for all body types as long as you aren’t a petite side sleeper.
- It’s more expensive than the standard online mattress, but we think it’s a great value because of the upgraded organic materials and certifications.
Why we picked this bed
We picked the Avocado mattress for one of the best firm mattresses of 2021 because it is an extremely comfortable firm mattress made of all-natural, hypoallergenic materials.
How To Find The Best Firm Bed
Changing mattresses can be difficult, especially when you’ve slept on a soft mattress for so long. Your body might need anywhere from several days to a full month to adjust to a new sleeping surface. But if you need or want to switch to a firm bed, here are few recommendations from our team.
- 1. Choose the Right Firmness
There’s a huge difference between extra-firm and medium-firm. Even luxury-firm vs. medium-firm can be different. In our reviews, we consider extra firm mattresses to feel like a thin layer of foam on a board to represent the lack of pressure relief that an ultra firm mattress will offer. There are plenty of extra firm beds out there, but you will have a shorter list than if you were looking for a medium firm mattress, which is perhaps the most popular comfort level.
A medium-firm mattress offers a good amount of pressure relief but not so much that you’re “melting” into the bed. You should still feel the support but immediately recognize that this is semi firm, not ultra firm. The majority of brands offer a medium firm bed, or something just a little softer.
In our mattress recommendations, we always say it’s better to start too firm than too soft with your new bed, especially if you’re wondering what is the best firm mattress for your situation. Beds tend to get softer over time.
- 2. Consider your sleeper type and weight
A poor mattress selection can have a huge impact on the quality of your sleep, as can a high-quality mattress. In general, firm mattresses are excellent for people looking for more support and relief from back pain. We’ll cover the specific considerations that might make firm mattresses your best choice.
Stomach and back sleepers
There are usually some specific qualifications for people who tend to seek out a hard mattress. The first is that you’re possibly a back or stomach sleeper. These 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. Keeping the spine in neutral alignment can prevent back pain and soreness after sleeping. We notice that back sleepers typically like a firmer surface, perhaps even an extra firm one, and belly sleepers might need a little bit more cushion such as a medium firm mattress.
If you’re a side sleeper, the best mattress for you is probably medium to soft. As a side sleeper, you’ll need more cushion to contour around your hips and shoulders. If your mattress is too firm, there will be too much pressure around these areas that can misalign your spine and cause pain.
Another reason you may want a firmer bed is that you might be a heavier individual. Firmness is a relative term to weight, making things tricky if you’re either much heavier (250 lbs+) or much lighter (100 lbs-). Bigger 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 plus-size person who sleeps mainly on their back or belly or might just prefer an ultra firm bed in general, it can be more difficult for you to find what you’re looking for. Contrast with someone who weighs under 150 lbs who will think even a semi-firm mattress is extra-firm.
Pros and Cons of Sleeping on a Firm Mattress
|Excellent for heavy individuals – Because firm mattresses have more support, they’re less likely to sag and create discomfort for bigger people.||More painful for joints – People who suffer from conditions like arthritis might experience more pain from firm mattresses and increased pressure on their joints.|
|Spine alignment – Firm mattresses allow your spine to rest in a more neutral position, helping relieve daily pain from slouching and curving.||Breaking in period – If you aren’t used to a firm mattress, there’s a period where you’ll need to break it in and get used to it. It may feel too hard at first before you can get used to it.|
|Durability – Firm mattresses are built with more stability and are known to last longer than soft mattresses because you don’t sink into them as much.||Bad for side sleepers – A firm mattress might create too much pressure for side sleepers’ shoulders and hips|
Most Popular Accessories For A Firm Bed
Once you’ve purchased your best mattress, enhance your comfort with some of the most popular firm mattress accessories:
- Foam mattress topper – A foam mattress topper gives you a little more cushion if you’re still adjusting to your mattress or need a bit more contour while you sleep.
- Sturdy foundation – A sturdy foundation is especially helpful for heavier individuals or couples. The foundation, like the one from Big Fig, serves as an extra support layer and provides additional durability.
- Wraparound pillow – A wraparound pillow gives you extra support for your neck and shoulders. If you sleep on your side occasionally, a wraparound pillow can help relieve some of the pressure around your neck that the mattress might cause otherwise.
There is no single best “type” of bed, as long as it’s comfortable and supportive to you. For instance, some people will prefer an innerspring mattress, while others will want a bed made entirely of foam—it’s all up to you.
When you purchase from an online mattress company, you get to take advantage of their generous return and trial period policies. All of the brands listed above offer free shipping and will give you a risk-free trial period to make sure you find the most comfortable firm mattress for you.
Some bed in a box mattress brands have showrooms or are available in retailers around the country. From our best firm mattress selection, Nectar, Purple, and Brooklyn Bedding offer store locators that can help you find the nearest place to try them. You can also check Casper, Bear, and Tuft & Needle for their locations.
Our testing team rates firmness levels from the perspective of the average American, who weighs between 180 lbs and 200 lbs. If you’re over 200 lbs, beds will feel softer to you. Conversely, if you’re under about 130 lbs, all mattresses will feel firmer.
Our editors consider a medium firm mattress to be around a 6 to 8 out of 10 on the firmness scale, whereas an extra firm mattress is between 8 and 10 on that same scale.
An extra firm mattress is excellent for your back as long as you’re a back or stomach sleeper. A firm mattress provides support that aligns your spine to relieve pressure and pain.
Plank and Avocado offer some of the firmest mattresses you can buy online. The extra firm mattress is excellent for back and stomach sleepers while also offering a medium-firm side for more comfort.
A hard mattress is best for heavier individuals and back sleepers who need more spine support. A soft mattress is usually better for side sleepers or people looking for more joint relief while they sleep.
Why Trust Us
Get the kind of sleep you’ve only dreamed of with some help from our team of mattress experts. We personally test more than 175 of the best sleep solutions from over 60 leading brands on site, so you can be sure you’re getting unbiased reviews, fair comparisons and personalized recommendations.
The Review Team
- How We Select The Best Mattresses
The Slumber Yard has been around since the beginning of the bed in a box craze. Our team has personally tested and reviewed over 175 mattresses so far, and we keep more than 150 beds in our office so we can compare them (and take afternoon naps).
When testing mattresses, we evaluate the following factors:
- Construction: We cut beds open to see what’s inside and how it’s made.
- Feel: We check if it has a stuck-in-the-mud memory foam feel, or if it’s more of a neutral foam or a plush pillow top, etc.
- Firmness: We have our own firmness scale and evaluate how that may vary depending on your body and sleeper type.
- Pressure relief: We test what’s the sweet spot for different body and sleeper types.
- Support and how that changes by body/sleeper type
- Edge Support: This is important for couples who share a bed. Would you roll-out of the bed, or can you sleep confidently close to the edges?
- Motion Isolation: We use the water glass test to see how the bed fares with motion transfer. This is another important factor for couples that don’t want to wake up one another when they move.
- Temperature Regulation: We use a temperature gun to evaluate if the bed warms up, stays neutral or actively cools while you sleep.
- Noise: This could be an issue in beds with coils or innerspring.
- Off-Gassing: Some beds could have a smell for a few weeks after unpacking, and we try to warn you about it.
- Company policies: We also take into account policies such as shipping, returns, trial period and warranty.
- Value: We look at a bed’s price in the context of what it offers in terms of features and quality of materials and construction.
After considering all these factors, our team picks the best beds for each category. For the best firm beds, we looked for mattresses rated medium-firm or firm. On our 10 points firmness scale, these beds fall between a six and a ten. As part of our selection process, we considered different sleeping preferences and tried to recommend a firm bed for as many people as possible. Ultimately, we also looked closely at price and overall value of the mattress.