For a rested night's sleep, you need to upgrade to the best mattress of 2023. If you don't know where to start, we're here to help as we've tested out a wide range of mattresses to find the ones that'll deliver the most comfortable and supportive sleep. This comprehensive best mattress guide UK will help you find the perfect option, whatever your sleeping style, preferences or budget.
If you're struggling with an ancient, worn-out mattress, you'll likely find that the process of buying a new one has changed a lot over the years. While you can still head off to a big out-of-town store to bounce up and down on a few options, the majority of mattress shopping now happens online (what a surprise). You can pick the mattress that suits you best, get it delivered as a bed-in-a-box (opens in new tab) and in most cases, try it out for at least 100 nights (sometimes up to a year) with the option to return it if it doesn't agree with you. Ideally, you'll get the perfect mattress first time and not have to faff around with returning and re-buying, which is why we've put together this list to take the guesswork out of the process.
Our number one best mattress is the luxurious Simba Hybrid Pro (opens in new tab), which combines springs and foams and delivers sumptuous comfort and impressive cooling properties. If you want to sack off springs altogether, check out the Emma Original (opens in new tab); it's extremely comfortable and great value to boot. If neither one of those take your fancy, we have plenty of hybrid and other material options for you to explore, too.
Note that because the mattress industry is fiercely competitive, big discounts are common (read: you can basically ignore that RRP). The price widget with each entry on our list will automatically pull in the cheapest price for each model, but you can also consult our best cheap mattress deals (opens in new tab) page for a rundown of where to find the best bargains right now.
- Shopping from the US? Head to our best mattress US guide (opens in new tab)
Best mattress 2023 ranking
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The Simba Hybrid Pro is one of Simba's high-end offerings, and delivers exceptional comfort. It's on the pricey side, but for our money it's the best premium mattress around – in fact, it has picked up the T3 Best Mattress Award for two years running, in 2021 and 2022.
The seven specially engineered layers include a dreamily soft top layer, a natural wool layer to help regulate temperature, and two layers of springs. The top layer of softness gives you something to sink into as you lay down, but just a little, before you hit the supportive layers underneath, which deliver a reassuring level of firmness. These firmer lower layers also make it easy enough to move around on, and the motion isolation and edge support is good too. Many memory foam mattresses can trap heat, but in our Simba Hybrid Pro review, our tester was very impressed with the temperature regulation on the Hybrid Pro. The only down-side of the design, really, is the lack of removable cover; a feature we'd usually expect at that kind of price point.
The Simba Hybrid Pro is rated 6.5 out of 10 on the firmness scale, which means it's at the softer end of medium. If you prefer something firmer, check out the Brook + Wilde Elite (number three in this list) in Firm, or the Eve Premium Hybrid instead (our Eve Premium Hybrid vs Simba Hybrid Pro breaks down the differences between those two). The Hybrid Pro sits at the pricier end of the market, but Simba mattress deals (opens in new tab) are a regular occurrence, so you shouldn't have to pay RRP. And if you like the sound of a Simba but can't afford this one, we also highly rate the cheaper, less advanced Simba Hybrid Original (opens in new tab).
- Get 40% off the Simba Hybrid Pro at Simba (opens in new tab)
The comfortable, versatile Emma Original sits right at the top of our best memory foam mattress ranking, earning a solid four stars in our Emma mattress review (opens in new tab). The design of this medium-firm mattress is simple but effective. Three layers of different foams: Airgocell foam on top (to mould gently to your body), viscoelastic memory foam in the middle (for pressure relief and support), and a firm HRX foam foundation. The cover features a temperature-regulating top and a breathable non-slip bottom as well as handles for rotating (you don't have to flip it), and it's removable and machine-washable, too. The RRP of this mattress fluctuates, but regular Emma discount codes and deals (opens in new tab) mean it's typically amongst the most reasonable options around.
There are a couple of potential down-sides to be aware of. The first is that the Emma Original tends to trap heat a little, so if you sleep hot, you might be better going for a hybrid model, as the springs offer better airflow. Second, it's on the softer side. If you need more support, we'd recommend a firmer option like the Nectar memory foam mattress (number 8) or Otty Pure mattress (number 5).
- Get 50% off the Emma Original at Emma (opens in new tab)
Brook + Wilde might not be one of the most well recognised mattress brand names, but it deserves to be. Ever found yourself getting excited about a new mattress only to discover that its firmness level's wrong for you? That's not a problem with the Brooke + Wilde Elite; this luxurious premium mattress comes with a choice of three firmness levels, from soft to firm, so you can pick the rating that's just right. If you get it wrong, you can swap the firmness layer for free (we've spoken to a non-press customer who's done this, and they confirmed the process was smooth and stress-free).
It features eight layers designed to deliver absolute comfort and support, including two layers of pocket springs separated by a layer of specialist support foam to aid spinal alignment. We were so impressed with it in our tests that we gave it a full five stars in our Brook + Wilde Elite mattress review (opens in new tab), saying that "in terms of comfort and quality, we'd struggle to fault it; it's supremely comfortable, won't overheat, and provides a nice amount of buoyancy and bounce".
Each Brook + Wilde Elite mattress is made to order, which means it'll take longer than other mattresses to arrive – expect to wait around three weeks – but when it turns up Brooke + Wilde will set it up in the room of your choice. This looks and feels like a luxurious mattress, and indeed, if you pay full price, this mattress is far from cheap, but the good news is there's almost always an offer to take advantage of – head to our Brook + Wilde mattress deals page for the best current prices.
If you like the idea of interchangeable firmness levels, but need something a bit cheaper, check out the Brook + Wilde Lux. You could also head to our Simba vs Brook + Wilde showdown to see how it compares to our current top-ranker.
- Get 52% off the Brook + Wilde Elite with the code T352 at Brook + Wilde (opens in new tab)
The first and only mattress from Panda London, the Panda Hybrid Bamboo mattress is an eco-friendly firm and comfortable offering, made of premium bamboo materials. Bamboo is sturdy yet silky soft, meaning it'll last for a very long time. Panda's very own bamboo infused foam acts like memory foam that moulds to the body, cradles it and aligns the spine while you sleep.
Where Panda London stands out from the rest is its eco-friendly and sustainable credentials. All organic bamboo in its products are sourced from approved forests, grown pesticide free and is vegan friendly. Panda reduces its environmental impact at every stage of the product’s lifecycle, and the foam in the mattress can be 100% recycled. See our 5-star Panda London Hybrid Bamboo mattress review (opens in new tab) for more details.
- Get 20% off the Panda London Hybrid Bamboo mattress at Panda (opens in new tab)
The OTTY Pure mattress pushes the boat out with some pioneering materials. In place of regular memory foam you've got a foam made from bamboo and infused with charcoal; both materials chosen for their temperature regulating, anti-fungal and antibacterial and hypoallergenic properties. It's hard to gauge those things when sleeping on it, but thankfully it also shines when it comes to comfort.
In our OTTY Pure review (opens in new tab), our tester found this mattress superbly supportive, with decent temperature regulation and great build quality. OTTY says it's a 6.5 on the firmness scale but we think it feels firmer than that – perhaps a 7.5. The surface feels plush and soft when you press on it with your hand, but lying down there's great overall support, including underneath your hips. You'll also sink in very slightly, but this is a mattress you sleep 'on' rather than 'in'. The layer of generous 16cm springs are there more for support than bounce.
You do pay a premium for the bamboo and charcoal, so if this mattress is out of your price range, consider the OTTY Hybrid Original, which we were also impressed with. Or hold out for an OTTY discount code to take the price down. If you want the feel of more traditional memory foam, alternatives to explore would be the Emma Original or Eve Original.
- Get up to 50% off the OTTY Pure mattress at OTTY (opens in new tab)
The Premium is Emma's high-end offering, and it combines many of the features from the ultra comfy original, but builds on them for something that's generally more luxurious. The big structural difference is the addition of tall springs, which have the effect of making this model firmer than the Original, and also promoting airflow through the mattress so it sleeps cooler (if we're nit picking, it does still trap heat a little bit).
In our Emma Premium mattress review, our tester noted no sinking feeling to speak of (another key point of difference compared to the Original), but instead a firmly bouncy sleep surface. We found it took a little while to break in – around a week – but after that, it was both dreamily comfortable and ultra supportive. Delivery was smooth, and you've got that 200-night trial and 10 year guarantee for peace of mind. Like most entries in this best mattress guide, we'd suggest ignoring the (quite high) RRP, as there's almost always a good Emma mattress deal to take the price right down.
- Get 50% off the Emma Premium mattress at Emma (opens in new tab)
While there are plenty of premium hybrids on the market, you might not want to spend that much on your new mattress. Enter: the Eve Original Hybrid. Sitting in the middle of this brand's range, this mattress combines layers of different foams and springs to excellent effect. We found the medium-firm feel dreamily comfortable to sleep on, with great all-over support (although it does drop off slightly towards the edges).
As with all Eve mattresses, we were very impressed with the temperature regulation from the foam, too – no overnight overheating here. At 25cm thick, it's on the thinner side for a hybrid, although you might be grateful for that given Eve will only take it as far as the front door of your building (in our Eve Original Hybrid review (opens in new tab), our tester struggled to get their Super King box up the stairs and into place).
There are regular Eve mattress discounts that take the price down to a very competitive mid-range price (although this brand tends to only discount one or two of its mattresses at any one time, so you might need to hang about for this one to get the price drop). If you don't need the springs, there's also a foam-only version of this mattress for a lower price (check out our Eve Original mattress review for more). And if you're really on a budget, we're also big fans of the Eve Lighter mattress, which is a stone-cold bargain.
- Get 40% off the Eve Original mattress at Eve (opens in new tab)
The DreamCloud Luxury Hybrid looks and feels like a high-end mattress, but you can often come by deals that make it much more affordable than you'd expect. Like the Simba Hybrid Pro, this one throws off our 'firmness' chart rather, by boasting a super-soft and cushiony top layer, with a firmer lower level to provide the support you need to keep your back happy in the longer term. It delivers impressive temperature regulation, although if we were to nit-pick, we think the edge support could be slightly improved. In our DreamCloud mattress review, our tester found it most comfy when lying on their back, but noted it's fine for side sleepers too.
The brand shines when it comes to extras. You get an industry-best trial period of a full year and a lifetime guarantee. DreamCloud is also a carbon neutral company, and it'll donate its old and returned mattresses to the British Heart Foundation, to give it a new home.
- Get 45% off the DreamCloud Luxury Hybrid mattress at DreamCloud (opens in new tab)
Another foam-only model, the Nectar mattress feels comfortable from the minute it comes out of its minimal packaging, and offers a medium-to-firm support level that suits any type of bed and all kinds of sleepers. There's a bit of give in the top layer, which neatly moulds around the body, while a supporting base layer adds the required firmness for a peaceful sleep. The adaptive cooling cover top layer is supposed to draw heat away from the body, and while we're not sure it actually does this, it certainly feels cooler than many memory foam options. In our Nectar mattress review, our tester noted some off-gassing when the mattress was first delivered, but this soon settled down.
Price-wise, Nectar sits in the middle of the market, and of course there are regular Nectar discount codes and deals to help you save (often, these deals mean free sleep accessories such as the Nectar mattress protector – one of the best mattress protectors around – to keep your mattress box-fresh). In fact, we've never seen this mattress selling at full price, so take those RRP figures with a huge pinch of salt. Nectar is a front-runner when it comes to extras. It was the first to offer a full 365-night trial (now a handful of brands have followed suit) and you get a lifetime warranty for your new mattress, too.
In the mid-range memory foam only sector, this mattress' obvious competitor is Emma – head to our Emma Original vs Nectar mattress showdown. We also think Eve is worth considering, with foam-only options at a range of price points.
- Get 52% off the Nectar mattress at Nectar (opens in new tab) & free named day delivery
If you tend to wake up with back and joint pain, the REM-Fit 500 Ortho Mattress might be the solution you're looking for. It’s a hybrid mattress with 2,000 orthopaedic pocket springs combined with five layers of cushioning, supportive foam, and it's seriously firm. We rated it an 8 out of 10 for firmness (with 10 being the firmest). In our REM-Fit 500 Ortho mattress review, it took our tester a few nights to get used to it, but once we did, we were blown away by just how comfortable it is.
The REM-Fit 500 Ortho is amazingly supportive, thanks to a Mediflex foam layer that moulds to the shape of your body to keep your spine is the 'correct' alignment, and those orthopedic springs providing provide upper and lower back support. Luxury memory foam also provides just the right amount of cushioning to pressure points like your shoulders, hips and knees.
We found the temperature regulation properties worked really well, even during a heatwave. While the REM-Fit 500 Ortho isn't the cheapest mattresses around, we think that if you suffer from aches and pains at night it's one of the best mattresses you can choose. It’s also a great option for couples thanks to its low motion transfer, and has great edge support (so you can sleep right up to the edges without them buckling).
- Get up to 45% off REM-Fit 500 Ortho mattress (opens in new tab) & free memory foam pillows
The Happy Beds Ortho Royale might not look as modern as most of the entries in our best mattress guide, but if you want a great value sprung mattress then it's hard to beat. It doesn't even have pocket springs; instead it has an open coil system that allows air to flow through, with vents for stale air to escape from, resulting in a lovely cool mattress that won't trap heat.
Officially classed as a medium-firm mattress, in our Happy Beds Ortho Royale review our tester rated it on the firmer end of that scale. For some this will be off-putting, but others will welcome the extra support. Because it's a spring mattress, you'll sleep 'on top' of the surface, rather than sinking into it as you would with memory foam. Firmness will also depend on body weight, and the Happy Beds site has a handy tool that lets you input your weight to show you how firm the mattress will feel to you.
There's a hand-tufted damask cover, and satin pads provide a comfy sleep surface. The real star of the show here is the price though: even at RRP it's very cheap, and regular offers make things even more appealing. Note that you're sacrificing a trial period in order to get that cheap price point, and the guarantee is shorter than the industry standard too. But overall we think this mattress offers strong value for money.
- Get 45% off the Happy Beds Ortho Royale mattress at Happy Beds (opens in new tab)
What's the comfiest mattress in the UK for 2023?
One key thing to consider when making your selection is memory foam vs springs – both have their pros and cons, but if you've decided the former is right for you, we have a separate guide to the best memory foam mattresses. For our money, we'd probably go for a hybrid that combines both, but that's just us.
How often should you change your mattress? More often than you might think: most experts suggest upgrading every 6-8 years under normal conditions. It might be an investment, but it's one worth making if you can afford it. Studies (opens in new tab) have found that newer mattresses can significantly improve your sleep quality and reduce aches and pains. And even if you clean your mattress regularly, sweat, dead skin cells and dust mites build up to frankly horrifying levels fairly quickly. You can help matters by adding one of the best mattress protectors, and bunging it in the washing machine regularly.
If you're unsure about sizing, our mattress size guide will help you out (with info on the sheets and bedding you need, too). These are adult options – we have separate guides to the best kids mattress and the best cotbed mattress for toddler.
Which is the best type of mattress?
There are a few different mattress types on the market right now. As you start your hunt for the best mattress, there are certain terms you're going to come across a lot – the difference isn't complex, but it's helpful to understand what each term means before you get shopping. The three main mattress types you're going to come across are memory foam, pocket sprung or hybrid. For more info, head to our memory foam vs spring mattress comparison.
This type of mattress has exploded in popularity over recent years. Memory foam is a responsive material that reacts to your temperature and weight to mould gently around your body as you lie on it. Memory foam mattresses offer great support and comfort, and are perhaps the most popular mattress type right now, with most of the big brands offering their own takes on this material.
One potential down-side is that memory foam traps body heat in a way you don't get so much with springs. So in the winter you'll have a lovely cosy bed, but in the summer you might find yourself getting a little warmer than usual – which can be an issue if you sleep hot. Many brands have introduced cooling top layers to counteract this. You can read more in our memory foam mattress buying guide.
Pocket sprung is a more traditional mattress type. These mattresses include thousands of small springs inside their own fabric pockets. Although they will adapt to your body shape, they're not as supportive as memory foam, and may provide less movement isolation (problematic if you've got a restless bedmate). They offer a bouncier surface to sleep on – you won't sink into a pocket sprung mattress the same way as you would a memory foam one.
The term 'hybrid' technically could refer to any mattress that's made up of different materials, but it typically means a mattress that combines layers of pocket springs and memory foam. This makeup offers more bounce than memory foam-only mattresses, but with the added support and comfort of a memory foam upper.
There are a few more terms you might come across in your search. These mattress types are a little rarer, but still worth knowing about.
- Latex: A breathable, springy material that's exceptionally durable and resilient. Can be expensive.
- Continuous and coil: Made from a single looped wire, or from single springs fixed with one wire. These are cheaper and less likely to give a good night’s sleep.
- Bed in a box (opens in new tab): This refers to a delivery method, in which mattresses are compressed, rolled or folded into a box for easy home delivery. They're usually foam, or a memory foam and spring combination.
One more bit of advice before you start shopping: don't put too much emphasis on mattress type. Personal factors like your height, weight, body shape, sleeping style and temperature are far more likely to affect how comfortable you find a specific mattress. All our picks recommended in our best mattress guide above have been designed to deliver outstanding support and comfort for the majority of people – regardless of their material.
Tips on checking if a mattress is suitable for you
Before buying a mattress, make sure it’s the right size. Your mattress – like your bed – should be 10cm longer than the tallest person sleeping in it. It should also be wide enough for you and a partner to put your hands under your head without your elbows touching (or without touching the edge of the mattress if you’re not sharing).
Next, do the hand test: lying down on your back, push your hand under the small of your back. If you can’t, the mattress is too soft; if the gap is very large, it’s too hard. And if you have a partner, make sure they try it, too: what feels fine on your own may be like a bouncy castle with someone else on board.
Lastly, also check whether a mattress needs turning. Many don't these days, but if you’re considering one that does, make sure it has handles.
How we test mattresses
We test mattresses by sleeping on them for at least a month before writing up our thoughts. Wherever possible, we'll also update our reviews after 6 months or more, with any thoughts on the performance and durability of the mattress over a longer period.
During the test period, we focus on the design, comfort and performance of the mattress. On the design front, we'll look at things like how well the mattress is made, the materials used and whether it looks and feels high quality, and if there are extra features like zip-off top covers or handles to help you move it around easily.
For comfort, we'll consider what it's like to sleep on in a range of positions – does it provide sufficient support under the hips and spine? Is it soft enough that if you lie on your side, you won't wake up with any achy shoulder? Does it trap body heat so you wake up a sweaty mess in the summer months?
We'll also look at edge support (i.e. whether it's possible to sit or lie near the perimeter of the mattress without feeling like you're going to roll off) and motion transfer (i.e. if someone else is in the bed with you, to what degree you feel their movements).
Finally, we'll also consider the extras offered by the company – what's the delivery process like? Is there a good trial period? What about the guarantee? Because there are regular deals on in the mattress world, all these factors are weighed up against the price with a typical discount factored in, to get an overall view of if the mattress is a good buy for the price.
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