Popular Mattress Types Explained

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Mattresses come in many different types, and some people prefer certain types because of the features they have. If you're in the market for a new mattress, here are some of the mattress types you'll see — and why you might choose each one.

Innerspring Mattress: Coils for Back Support

Innerspring mattresses consist of three layers. A middle layer of coiled springs is sandwiched by a dense foam base and a soft fabric topper. The base provides support for the coils, which are closely arranged so that they provide good support. A fabric topper lays on top of the coils, preventing the metal springs from poking you when you lay down.

This is an effective mattress structure that provides good support and is therefore popular among heavyset individuals and people who have sore backs. It's also a fairly basic mattress design (despite being effective) and can serve as a good-quality budget option.

Foam Mattress: Memory Foam for Painful Joints

Memory foam mattresses have multiple layers of foam, generally moving from more dense to less dense as you go up the mattress. The topmost layer is often a thin layer of lightweight foam, but the layer beneath it is memory foam that adjusts to your body.

Memory foam mattresses are a favorite among people who have painful joints, as the layers of foam don't press in any one point. This also can be a suitable option if you toss and turn as a result of being unable to get comfortable.

Hybrid Mattresses: Coils and Foam for General Comfort

Hybrid mattresses are so-named because they have both coils and foam. They typically come with a foam base and coiled springs, which might be slightly shorter than standard coiled springs. Multiple layers of foam sit atop the coiled springs, again going from densest to least dense as you progress upward through the mattress.

This hybrid setup makes for a mattress that's firm yet smooth, as you can sink far into it and still not feel the coles underneath. Hybrid mattresses tend to cost more because they have two systems in them, and they're also frequently a little thicker than standard mattresses. If you have the budget, however, these are some of the most comfortable mattresses.

Couples who sleep together but don't agree on mattress firmness might especially appreciate having a hybrid mattress. The combination of comfort and support usually appeals to multiple preferences.

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