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Best Mattresses by Age

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It’s important that you personalize your mattress based on your own unique sleeping habits, regardless of what age you are. Senior citizens, kids, and teens all tend to have certain requirements when it comes to sleeping; and there are mattresses that are designed to accommodate these different age groups. You can navigate this article using the table of contents on the left hand side of your screen.

Our Top Picks

Cribs are designed for babies and toddlers. The best crib is the Graco Charleston. We like it because the sturdy construction makes it safe and because it meets multiple safety standards.

Kids mattresses are suitable for children up to the age of 12. The best mattress for kids is the Bear Mattress. We liked the cooling effect and how well it conforms to your body.

Bunk beds are great for children who share the same bedroom. Our favorite bunk bed is the Dorel Living Sierra Triple Bunk Bed. We like it because it can accommodate three kids and because it can be disassembled into three separate beds.

Mattresses for teens are designed for for the 13-18 age group. The best teen mattress is the Layla. Our favorite thing about this brand is that it is flippable, with a soft side and a firm side that you can switch between.

Senior citizens are defined as adults who are over the age of 65. We recommend that elderly people purchase the Saatva. The Saatva brand is great for people who suffer from chronic pain, especially back pain.

Cribs for Babies

The best cribs are:

  1. Graco Charleston
  2. Babyletto Hudson
  3. Davinci Jenny Lind

#1. Graco Charleston

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The Charleston is a 4-in-1 convertible crib; meaning that it can be switched between crib, toddler bed, day bed, and full-sized bed (to turn this into a full bed you’ll need to buy a mattress and metal bed frame separately). This means that you won’t need to keep buying larger beds as your baby gets bigger. As your baby grows, so does the bed.

One feature that we love about the Graco Charleston is that it has a fixed-side design to enhance stability. The last thing anyone needs is a crib that isn’t sturdy enough!

The Graco Charleston is constructed out of high-quality pine wood and wood components. It’s JPMA certified, meets all ASTM and CPSC safety standards, and has 3 position adjustable mattress support.

#2. Babyletto Hudson

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If you’re looking for a crib that has a more modern, trendy appearance then the Babyletto Hudson is definitely one that you should consider.

This crib is noticeably lower compared to similar brands, which is great if you’re a shorter parent. You can convert this bed from crib to toddler bed to day bed using the included toddler bed conversion kit.

The Hudson is GreenGuard Gold certified – meaning that it’s been screened for 360 VOCs and over 10,000 toxic chemicals – it’s made with New Zealand pine wood coated with a non-toxic finish, and it’s safe from lead and pthalate.

#3. Davinci Jenny Lind

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If you’re interested in a lightweight crib that has wheels for added mobility, the Davinci Jenny Lind is a great choice.

The Jenny Lind is really easy to assemble compared to other cribs we’ve reviewed. The only problem we found with this crib is that the wheels don’t lock in place, which means that it’ll move a little bit every time you bump into it. We don’t think this is a big deal but it might be a dealbreaker for some.

Davinci makes sure that their cribs are Greenguard Gold Certified, and they are manufactured out of New Zealand wood using non-toxic coating.

As a 3-in-1 convertible bed, the Jenny Lind is able to transform from crib to toddler bed to day bed. The only problem with this is that you’ll need to purchase the toddler bed conversion kit separately.

Kids

The best mattresses for kids are:

  1. Bear Mattress
  2. Modway Aveline
  3. Nest Bedding BKB Big Kid’s Bed

#1. Bear Mattress

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The Bear is a medium-firm mattress that provides enough support for young, growing bodies. The multi-layered memory foam construction supports the natural curvature of your back and provides spinal support.

The mattress provides a cooling effect because of the graphite gel and open cell response foam construction. This is extremely important because maintaining a cool body temperature is one of the most important aspects of sleep hygiene. It’s extremely common for kids that overheat to wake up in the middle of the night. If you know how important sleep is to your child’s development, then you know that this is an important feature.

When you buy the Bear Mattress you get a 100-night free trial period and a 10-year warranty. You can finance your purchase using Affirm, which makes this more affordable when compared to paying the full price up front.

#2. Modway Aveline

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The Aveline by Modway is a much more affordable option that is great for mattress buyers on a budget.

It’s constructed with an open cell memory foam comfort layer that does an excellent job of contouring to the shape of your body, according to our review team. We rate this mattress as being medium-firm, a level of firmness that should meet the needs of most kids.

This bed’s level of comfort is a little bit lower than more expensive premium name brands, but that’s more than offset by the low cost. Your kid is going to be growing at a rapid rate and may outgrow their old mattress. If you’re on a budget this is definitely a great mattress that won’t break the bank.

#3. Nest Bedding BKB Big Kid’s Bed

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The BKB is one of the first direct-to-consumer beds that is designed specifically for kids. It’s made out of CertiPUR-US certified foams and has no chemical fire barrier or other toxic materials.

Most other mattresses are designed for the needs of adult sleepers but can also be used for children. The Big Kid’s Bed was designed to meet the needs of children. In our opinion, there is no need to buy a mattress that is marketed specifically to parents who are shopping for their kid. There’s nothing wrong with using a regular adult mattress. But if this bed looks like it would be great for your son or daughter, then it’s definitely a great option. If the other beds on this list seem like they’re better for your needs then go ahead and buy one of those. Don’t let the kid-specific marketing sway you.

Bunk Beds

The best bunk beds are:

  1. Dorel Living Triple Bunk Bed
  2. DHP Twin-Over-Twin Bunk Bed
  3. Max and Lily Solid Wood Twin Over Full Bunk Bed

#1. Dorel Living Sierra Triple Bunk Bed

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If you have a large household with multiple children sharing the same bedroom, then you should definitely consider a triple bunk bed. Many parents may think that the height of this bed can pose a safety hazard, but we’re happy to report that the Sierra has extremely sturdy construction.

The Dorel Living Sierra is made out of high quality rubber wood with solid connections. When this bed is completely assembled, nothing rattles or shakes. It’s extremely solid and can support the weight of almost any child.

The Sierra has two ladders leading to the middle and top beds. Both the middle and top sections feature sturdy guardrails for safety. If necessary, you can disassemble the bunk bed and set it up as three separate free-standing beds.

#2. DHP Twin-Over-Twin Bunk Bed

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Twin-over-twin style beds like the DHP are considered to be the standard type of bunk bed. One thing we love about the DHP is that it’s made out of lightweight steel. It’s easy to assemble and it’s low weight makes it easy to move around when necessary.

The DHP has sturdy guardrails for safety. It also features a slanted ladder – which is considered safer than straight ladders – to get to the top bunk. There is a 200-pound weight limit for the top bed and a 225-pound weight limit for the lower bunk. Both sections have narrow slats that can accommodate almost any twin-sized mattress.

#3. Max and Lily Solid Wood Twin Over Full Bunk Bed

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Twin-over-full bunk beds are a good choice if you have kids who are different ages or sizes. The bottom bunk can accommodate a full mattress, while the top bunk is designed for a twin.

The Max and Lily bunk bed is constructed from knot-free New Zealand pine wood. The top bunk features 14″ guardrails for safety and there is a sanded ladder providing access to it. If you don’t want to use it as a bunk, the Max and Lily can be disassembled and arranged as two separate regular beds.

The Max and Lily is backed by a one-year warranty. The company also sells a twin-over-twin and a full-over-full model as well.

Teens

The best mattresses for teens are:

  1. Layla
  2. DreamCloud
  3. Puffy

#1. Layla

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Flippable mattresses – beds that have a soft side and a firm side – are becoming extremely popular. The Layla is one of the leading brands in the flippable mattress category. One side is “firm” and the other is “medium soft”. We recommend the firm side for back and side sleepers and the medium soft side for stomach sleepers. If you don’t know which side you prefer, you can try each one out for a week before you make your decision!

Each side of the Layla includes copper-infused memory foam comfort layers that did an excellent job of providing support without too much pressure according to our reviewers.

The soft side includes a layer of convoluted polyfoam which gives it that “sinking in” feeling. The support core is made out of high-density polyfoam to help reinforce the comfort layer and prevent sagging.

If you’re located in the continental US, you’ll get free shipping on your order. You also get a standard 120-night sleep trial and a lifetime warranty.

#2. DreamCloud

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The DreamCloud is a medium-firm mattress. Like the Nectar and other medium-firm mattresses, DreamCloud is great for providing support without being too stiff and uncomfortable.

Since it’s a hybrid mattress, the DreamCloud has an innerspring core that is surrounded by a layer of gel for a cooling effect. Believe it or not, there are actually eight different layers to this bed!

Since most teens aren’t suffering from aches and pains (youth is definitely wasted on the young!), they don’t necessarily need a really firm mattress that’s going to relieve pressure. Rather what most teens need is something comfortable that will help them get high quality sleep so they aren’t tired when going to school in the morning.

Through our testing process we determined that the DreamCloud did a great job of helping teens fall asleep and stay asleep throughout the night. This is critical since adolescence is a time when sleeping patterns shift and many kids have a hard time adjusting.

You can buy the DreamCloud with 0% financing and you’ll also get free shipping and a lifetime warranty. The company also offers a standard 365-night sleep trial so you can return the bed if it isn’t meeting the needs of your child.

#3. Puffy

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We rate Puffy mattresses as being a medium level of firmness. If the medium-firm mattresses above aren’t soft enough for you, a medium mattress like the Puffy will most likely meet your needs. It provides the right balance between support and comfort. You won’t sink in too much but it won’t feel like you’re sleeping on a board.

Teens normally don’t have medical issues that would necessitate using a firm mattress for pain relief, so the Puffy mattress is perfect for them. It’s constructed out of memory foam that conforms to your body, helping you fall asleep faster and ensuring that you wake up feeling refreshed.

Most teens have a hard time falling asleep at bedtime, so a comfortable bed like the Puffy is great for them. A less comfortable mattress may prevent them from getting quality sleep, which could cause their academic performance to suffer.

Puffy offers a standard 101-night sleep trial so you can return it if it isn’t meeting the needs of your teen. They also have a 10-year limited warranty to protect you from manufacturer defects.

Seniors

The best mattresses for senior citizens are:

  1. Saatva
  2. ZenHaven
  3. Nectar

#1. Saatva

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The Saatva is a memory foam innerspring mattress that is great for seniors who suffer from back pain. It has great pressure relief when compared to other coil-based mattress brands. The comfort layers are made out of thick memory foam, polyfoam, and pocketed minicoils to help reduce motion transfer and noise.

Our favorite thing about the Saatva is the price. It’s available on the Saatva website at an extremely affordable price point with included white glove delivery service. If you live within the contiguous United States the company will deliver the mattress and assemble it in your home. They’ll also dispose of your old mattress so you don’t have to worry about getting rid of it. This in-home assembly service is great for senior citizens who may have health issues that prevent them from assembling the bed themselves.

Saatva comes in three different firmness options: medium soft, medium firm, and firm. These options are designed to accommodate different sleeping styles and personal preferences. If you’re an older individual who is suffering from pain, we recommend that you try the medium firm mattress to start with. If it doesn’t work for you, you can send it back with no questions asked during the 120-night sleep trial.

#2. ZenHaven

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ZenHaven is a dual-sided mattress – made by the same company that manufactures the Saatva – that has a different level of firmness on each side: Luxury Plush and Gentle Firm. The Luxury Plush side is designed for seniors who want a softer, more comfortable sleeping experience. If you decide that you need more support then just flip it over to the Gentle Firm side.

This two-side construction is great because elderly people’s needs frequently change. You might prefer the feel of a soft mattress now but may develop chronic pain later that will necessitate using a firm mattress. The ZenHaven gives you both options in one mattress. The only downside is that the mattress may be too heavy for the frailest elderly people to flip on their own.

One unique feature of the ZenHaven is that the comfort layer is made out of American-made Talalay latex. The company decided to use Talalay rather than standard Dunlop latex due to the former’s mold-resistant and hypoallergenic properties. If you’re a senior who suffers from allergies or breathing difficulties then you’ll definitely appreciate this mattresses ability to resist microbes, dust mites, and mold.

The ZenHaven comes with a 120-day home trial and a 20-year warranty against manufacturer defects.

#3. Nectar

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The Nectar is a memory foam and gel foam hybrid medium-firm mattress. We recommend the Nectar (and other medium-firm mattresses) for people who suffer from chronic pain. Medium-firm mattresses like the Nectar do a great job of maintaining spinal alignment and preventing pressure points, both of which are important for the needs of seniors.

The support core consists of two layers of polyfoam, which is designed to prevent sagging. We found that the lyocell and cotton cover did a great job of dissipating heat and keeping us cool while sleeping.

The mattress features comfort levels of gel foam and standard memory foam, similar to the construction of their pillows. Gel and memory foam contour and conform to the shape of your body, providing pressure relief for sore areas.

You’ll get free shipping on the Nectar if you live within the contiguous United States. White glove delivery service (which includes in-home setup) is available for an additional fee. Nectar comes with a 365-night sleep trial and a lifetime “forever warranty”.

How to choose a mattress and crib for the baby?

Size and fit

How big do you want the crib to be? Do you want the standard 28”x52” or a mini crib measuring 24”x38”? Consider that a bigger crib can last longer and be a better investment. Your child could sleep in it until he or she is almost four before transitioning into a bigger bed. 

Make sure that the mattress fits the crib – no space between the mattress and the frame and no bending which would indicate that the mattress is too big. Any mattress that doesn’t fit perfectly poses a danger as it increases the risk of SIDS (Sudden Infant Death Syndrome). Although mattress sizes are standardized, bear in mind that not every mattress fits every crib perfectly.

The best option is to buy the mattress together with the matching crib, but if for some reason you need to buy a new mattress try to get one from the same manufacturer that produced the crib. 

Firmness and density

Cribs for babies should be really firm. When you press the mattress with your hand, it shouldn’t conform to your hand nor should it return to the original shape slowly. The right mattress should snap back as soon as you release pressure and it’s good if it feels a bit too firm. Soft and uneven surfaces are dangerous for babies because if they roll on their tummy, it can be hard or impossible to roll back to breathe properly.

If you’re not sure whether a mattress is firm enough or not, look for mattresses with 135 or more coils and a gauge of 15.5 or lower (for innerspring mattresses) and higher weight (about 8 pounds) for foam mattresses. 

Types of mattresses for babies

The most common mattresses for babies are foam mattresses, innerspring mattresses, and organic mattresses. 

Foam mattresses are light which is great when you have to lift the whole thing when changing sheets. Foam mattresses also tend to be the least expensive. They are usually made of polyurethane, a derivative of crude oil. Be careful with the firmness and resiliency of foam mattresses because they can be too soft. Also bear in mind that foam can trap heat easier than other mattresses.

Innerspring mattresses contain coils that are covered with foam and padding. They are usually heavier and more expensive than foam mattresses but they also tend to have better firmness and durability. 

Organic mattresses can be either foam or innerspring and they are completely made of natural materials such as cotton, wool, foam (plant-based), or other materials. They are expensive but if you are worried that chemicals contained in standard mattresses can emit poisonous gasses or cause allergies these are the right choice for you. 

How long can the baby use the same crib and how long does a crib last?

The Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) recommends avoiding cribs older than 10 years (even if they look good) and modified cribs. No crib components should be loose or broken. 

Your child can use the same crib from being an infant until the age of three or even up to four. Don’t worry about the mattress if you’ve been maintaining it properly.

Things to avoid when using a crib

Avoid having a mattress that doesn’t fit snugly into the crib – the CPSC states that the maximum gap between the mattress and the crib frame can be up to two fingers.

Make sure the crib is sturdy. Try to avoid cribs with removable sides, especially if they are used. Those could pose danger if not functioning well. 

If something breaks don’t fix the crib yourself and don’t use a crib that has been changed or fixed.

Avoid having anything in the crib apart from the blanket (this refers to infants) and don’t use anti-roll pillows.

Remember that safety is the absolute number one for your baby’s sleep. Inform yourself of all the rules on safe sleep for babies.

Used crib – yes or no?

A used crib and a used mattress are safe to use as long as they are in excellent condition and not older than 10 years. As we mentioned above the crib shouldn’t be broken, modified or anything on it be loose. As for the mattress, make sure it’s not too old and worn – if the fabric is torn and the inside of the mattress is exposed you should simply avoid it. Check that the mattress is firm enough. 

How to choose the right mattress for a child?

It’s easy to find a mattress with great reviews online, but here are the actual things to consider when choosing a mattress for your kid or teen.

  • Check the density and firmness. Press the mattress with your hands – it shouldn’t be too easy to press. Firmer mattresses last longer and are better for the child. Medium firmness is appropriate for children of all ages. 
  • Find the right size – is only one child sleeping in the bed or is it a shared bed? A shared one should be bigger and have better movement absorption. Look at the size section below for more information.
  • Decide on the material. Do you want foam, innerspring, latex, hybrid, or something else? Here’s a quick overview with the most important points on mattress types that can help you 
Type of mattressMaterialsProsCons
Memory foamMade of foam layers (mainly made of polyurethane, unless organic)Absorbs movement, anti-allergenic properties, organic ones are resistant to mold and dust mites, and are hypoallergenicA strong smell of the new mattress, traps heat
InnerspringContains coils (they can be either open coil or pocketed coil)Good airflow, not trapping heat, budget-friendlyDon’t absorb movement well
HybridContains coils and layers of memory foamBetter airflow than memory foam mattresses and better movement absorption than the innerspringCan be pricey, may need to rotate it to prolong its life span
LatexMade of latex (which can be made of petroleum, or organic, made of tree sap)Promotes natural spine alignment, good movement absorption, organic ones are resistant to mold and dust mites, and are hypoallergenicHeavy, can be costly

Consider the mattress size 

Mattress sizes depend on your needs and plans.

When your child outgrows the crib you need to decide whether you’re going to buy a twin or twin XL (or maybe a full XL if you’re generous). They outgrow regular twin beds pretty quickly which makes you buy another one when they hit the teens. 

A high-quality pricey mattress will be more durable and can be a good investment so you hopefully won’t have to worry until it’s time for your child to go to college.

What bed size should a teenager have?

It depends on the teen’s current height and how much they’ll grow.

If you’re absolutely sure your teen won’t outgrow a bed that’s 76” (6ft 3”) in length and that he or she will be able to fully stretch and sleep well you can get a twin-sized or short twin-sized bed. 

Are you and your spouse really tall? In that case get the XL twin and you probably won’t have to worry about outgrowing it (unless your teen grows “basketball player” tall).

Children and teens sweating a lot – could it be the mattress?

It could, especially if they are sleeping on a memory foam mattress because it conforms around the body and has poor airflow which traps a lot of heat. 

The first thing you should know is that for most kids and teens, it’s normal to sweat at night. If this happens only occasionally you really shouldn’t worry.

You could try to bring their body temperature down in a number of (much cheaper) ways before thinking about changing the mattress. 

Here are things you can try:

  • Drop the room temperature – make it cool (about 65-67F) 
  • Put on breathable pajamas (or no pajamas at all if that’s what your child is comfortable with)
  • Use a lighter blanket

If none of this works let your child sleep in another bed that’s not memory foam and see if he or she stops sweating. In the case that profuse sweating continues and is so bad that it worries you and disrupts your child’s sleep, you should consult a family doctor or pediatrician. 

Should seniors think about getting a new mattress?

If you are getting what you feel is enough sleep and don’t feel strong pain then you may not need a new mattress. However, many seniors simply accept some unpleasant things as a fact of aging – for example, that their sleep keeps getting worse and that they wake up too stiff and/or in pain. 

Many don’t even think that the problem could be in their existing mattress. Perhaps the support it offers no longer does the job. Perhaps the mattress is too old and has become uneven, which leads to poor spine alignment and joint pain. 

If you’re unsure whether you need a new mattress then answer these questions. How old is your mattress? Is it older than 10 years? How strong is your pain in the morning? Is it stronger than in the evening? Do you feel stiff and sore upon waking up? If yes, you could be thinking about a new mattress.

What if I don’t like the new mattress?

Some manufacturers offer mattress trial periods of up to three months. Ask in detail about their return policy before buying a new mattress. If you are eligible for a full refund then you have nothing to lose. Just don’t throw your old mattress away for at least a few weeks, just in case.

How to choose a mattress for seniors?

It would be a good idea to consult your physician about the best type of mattress for you personally. For example, if you need good joint support, a foam mattress could the right one for you unless you tend to get hot at night in which case you should probably avoid it.  

Latex mattresses offer the best back support and alignment plus they don’t trap heat.

Apart from mattress type it’s very important to get a mattress that’s firm just enough. Depending on how much you weigh and what side you sleep on, you may need a softer or firmer mattress. 

  • Those who weigh over 230lb generally need medium-firm to firm mattresses. Side sleepers in this category may need medium mattresses whereas stomach and back sleepers could be happy with medium firm or firm.
  • Those who weigh between 130 and 230lb may need anything from medium-soft to medium-firm. Side sleepers typically need mattresses on the softer end. 
  • Seniors with weight less than 130lb are recommended to use between soft and medium firmness. Again, side sleepers are likely to need soft ones while others should be better off with medium firmness. 

If you live with a partner try to negotiate the best mattress. Unless your weight is largely different, you could both benefit from the same mattress. A medium mattress should be the best compromise for all types.

How we rate mattresses

We rate mattresses using the following criteria:

  1. Comfort
  2. Structural integrity and durability
  3. Firmness and support

Learn more about our mattress rating process and methodology here.