If you prefer a firmer-feeling bed, read our roundup to find the best firm mattress for you
Tired of that sinking feeling? The best firm mattresses can provide support and comfort for those who are struggling to get a good night’s sleep on a bed that’s just a bit too squashy.
Indeed, in some cases, sleeping on a firmer mattress may even be better for you. If you’re sinking too deep into your mattress, then your weight will be spread unevenly and you might not get enough support in all the right places. This, in turn, can lead to back pain.
Of course, whether a firm mattress is right for you will depend on a number of factors, from weight to sleeping position. With this in mind, we’ve put together a buying guide addressing a few of the key questions you might have when shopping for a mattress. And, below that, is our pick of the best firm mattresses you can buy right now.
Best firm mattress: At a glance
|Best firm mattress overall||Otty Original Hybrid||Check prices at Otty|
|Best medium-firm mattress||Simba Hybrid Pro||Check prices at Simba|
|Best firm all-foam mattress||Eve Original||Check prices at Eve|
|Best firm foam mattress on a budget||Silentnight Studio Original||Check prices at Mattress Online|
How to choose the best firm mattress for you
How do I know if I need a firmer mattress?
If you find your current mattress too soft, this is an obvious indication that you might need a firmer one. Other indicators, as we’ve touched on above, include your body sinking too deep into your mattress, which can even result in back pain.
If you’re on the heavier side, you might need a firmer mattress to support your weight. Another factor that will play a part in whether you need a firm or soft mattress is the position you sleep in. If you sleep mainly on your side, a mattress that’s too firm won’t be able to accommodate the contours of your body. Ultimately, though, you want a mattress that will be able to do this while also being firm enough to provide decent levels of support.
How firm is ‘firm’?
The answer to this, of course, is far from straightforward. We’ve tested a lot of mattresses here at Expert Reviews, and the ones that have made it onto our roundup below are the few that we feel stand out as being notably firmer than the rest.
However, as with anything mattress and bedding related, a degree of subjectivity is involved, and different people can have very different experiences with the same mattress. What we consider a relatively firm mattress, therefore, might still not be firm enough for you.
The good news is that you can avoid taking any financial risks when buying your new mattress. Many bed-in-a-box brands, including all of the ones we’ve featured below, come with a trial period at the end of which you can return your mattress for a full refund if you find that it’s not the right one for you.
How we test mattresses
Without seeming too obvious, our mattresses’ are tested by sleeping on them. However, while we carry out this process, there are some key factors that we take into consideration. In addition to comfort and support, we pay attention to firmness and temperature control – though we may also focus on factors such as edge support and motion isolation when applicable.
For instance, some mattresses such as all-foam ones, might be warmer than others – this would make them less suitable for sleepers prone to overheating.
The base on which your mattress lies – whether it’s a sturdy divan base, springy slatted bed or even the floor – will impact how the mattress feels beneath you. Although we can’t always test a selection of bases when reviewing our mattresses, we will always take this into account.
Lastly, we factor in any potential trial runs being offered – which are very common within the bed-in-a-box market – before finally asking the pressing question, is the mattress good value for money?
If you’re still unsure on how to go about buying a new mattress, it’s well worth checking out some of our other roundups and buying guides:
The best firm mattresses you can buy in 2023
1. Otty Original Hybrid mattress: Best firm mattress overall
Price when reviewed: From £800 | Check prices at Otty Although it has gradually increased in price since we first reviewed it – it will now cost you £1,200 in a king size – if you prefer a firmer feel, the Otty Original Hybrid is still one of the best bed-in-a-box mattresses you can buy.
While the name might not be as well-known as others such as Emma and Simba, the Otty Original Hybrid is one of the best hybrids we’ve tested (alongside the Simba Hybrid Pro featured below). Constructed from 2,000 full-size pocket springs (140mm) alongside several layers of foam, it delivers impressive levels of comfort and support and also does a better job than many of its rivals at keeping you cool throughout the night.
Read our full Otty Original Hybrid review for more details
Key features – Type: Foam/pocket spring hybrid (50mm high-density foam, 2,000 140mm pocket springs, 30mm reflex foam, 30mm memory foam); Sizes: 9, from single to emperor (also EU sizes); Trial: 100-night trial, 10-year warranty
2. Simba Hybrid Pro: Best medium-firm mattress
Price when reviewed: From £1,169 | Check prices at Simba If you can afford it, the Simba Hybrid Pro is another brilliant hybrid mattress. At £1,759 in a king size (when it’s not discounted), it sits in the middle of the brand’s range of hybrid mattresses, between the regular Hybrid and the Hybrid Luxe.
The Hybrid Pro contains two layers of micro-pocket springs, alongside three layers of foam and an upper wool comfort layer. When we tested it, we found it supremely comfortable and supportive regardless of your sleeping position. As for where it lands on the firmness scale, Simba claims it has a medium-firm feel, which we’re inclined to agree with.
Read our full Simba Hybrid Pro review for more details
Key features – Type: Hybrid seven-layer (breathable “sleep surface”, wool upper layer, open-cell Simba-Pure foam layer, two microspring layers, high-definition Simba-Pure with edge support, zoned Simba-Pure support base); Sizes: Single to super-king; Trial: 365-night money-back guarantee
3. Eve Original: Best firm all-foam mattress
Price when reviewed: From £449 | Check prices at Eve While many memory foam mattresses can make it feel like you’re lying on a massive sponge, the Eve Original mattress doesn’t have a great amount of “sinkage”. This makes it a good all-foam option for those who prefer a firmer feeling mattress.
When we reviewed the Eve Original, we rated it somewhere between 7 and 7.5 out of 10 on the firmness scale. Indeed, of all the memory foam mattresses we’ve tested, this is perhaps the firmest, and is well suited to front and back-sleepers in particular. You’ve got plenty of time to test it out for yourself though: Eve has increased its mattress trial period to a lengthy 365 nights, a benefit previously offered only by its rival Nectar.
Read our full Eve Original mattress review for more details
Key features – Type: Memory foam three-layer (‘evecomfort’ foam layer, memory foam layer, base foam layer with anti-slip coating); Sizes: Single to super-king; Trial: 365-night money-back guarantee
4. Silentnight Studio Original: Best firm foam mattress on a budget
Price when reviewed: From £375 | Check prices at Mattress Online The all-foam Original from Silentnight’s Studio range is one of the most affordable memory foam mattresses we’ve put to the test. At around £370 in a single (rising to around £680 in a double and £760 in a king size), it’s cheaper than similar mattresses from Emma, Nectar and Eve (that’s without taking any promotional discounts into consideration).
Despite testing the Original on a bed with sprung slats, which will generally make your mattress feel less firm, we found the Studio Original to be on the firmer side of medium (as it is described).
It’s a supportive foam mattress that won’t break the bank when compared to a lot of its bed-in-a-box rivals. The downside, however, is that Silentnight’s 60-night trial, which allows you to swap your mattress for another one if you’re not happy, simply can’t compare to the lengthy trials and money-back guarantees offered by the other brands on this roundup.
Read our full Silentnight Studio Original review for more details
Key features – Type: Four layer (anti-allergy cover, ‘geltex’ gel-infused foam layer, middle foam layer, ‘Studio Flex’ memory foam foundation) Sizes: Single to king; Trial: 60-night sleep trial