Everyone is always talking about soft mattresses. “This mattress is the softest. That mattress is like a big, comfy cloud.”
But what if you don’t like soft mattresses? What if you want a firm mattress? What should you be looking for?
If you just love the feel of a firm mattress, I have five mattresses that are right up your alley. Out of all the mattresses I have reviewed, these are my five favorite firm mattresses.
Which firm mattress is the one for you?
With the Helix, the company will customize a mattress to meet your specific needs. You should find the exact firmness you are looking for.
The Plank is the firmest mattress I have ever tried. It is flippable, so you get two firmness options in one mattress.
The GhostBed is a firm (but not too firm), all-foam mattress. It is a value mattress for back sleepers, stomach sleepers, and some side sleepers.
The Awara is an all-natural mattress that features Dunlop latex and supportive coils. It is a great match for those who want to avoid potentially harmful chemicals in their mattress.
Best For Lightweight Sleepers
The Lull is the least firm mattress on this list. It is both supportive and comfortable and a great match for lightweight people.
Top Picks Explained
If you are in the market for a firm mattress, check out these five fantastic options. While they are all firm mattresses, they have different designs, feels, and features. Read on to find the right match for you.
The Helix mattresses are very unique in that the company will customize a mattress to meet your specific needs. You take a sleep quiz and then Helix sends a mattress that will be just as comfortable or supportive as you like.
If you are a fan of firm mattresses, you can choose from their firm collection. This includes the Twilight and Dawn mattresses, which are both firmer hybrid mattresses. You can also choose the Helix Nightfall, which is made specifically for larger people.
If you want some luxury flourishes, you can opt for a Luxe model. You can select a Luxe version of any model, and it will include more premium materials.
Whichever Helix mattress you choose, it should be a good match for couples. The Helix mattresses feature memory foam, a material that is known for cutting down on motion transfer. If you or your partner move around at night, you shouldn’t be disturbing each other.
In the end, the Helix is a great, customizable option. You should be able to find the perfect firmness for you if you go with a Helix.
What Makes The Helix Stand Out?
- Helix will customize a mattress just for you.
- It offers multiple firm mattress options so you can find that perfect firmness.
- The coils allow for airflow, so the Helix mattresses shouldn’t sleep too hot.
- You can choose a Luxe version of your mattress.
Check out the full Helix mattress review.
Okay, these are all firm mattresses. But if you want the firmest mattress possible, the Plank could be right for you.
The Plank comes from Brooklyn Bedding, producer of fantastic mattresses including the Spartan, Bowery, and Bloom Hybrid. It is an all-foam mattress with a flippable design. One side is firm while the other is ultra-firm.
The firm side felt like an 8/10 for me in terms of firmness. The ultra-firm side felt like a 9/10. This makes the Plank the firmest mattress I have tried.
The ultra-firm side should be a great match for stomach sleepers of many sizes. Even much heavier people should get the support they need on this side of the Plank. Back sleepers should try the firm side, though it might still be too firm.
All in all, if you want to find the firmest mattress possible, the Plank should work for you.
What Makes The Plank Stand Out?
- It is the perhaps the firmest mattress I have tried.
- The Plank is flippable, so you get two firmnesses in one mattress.
- The mattress is a good fit for stomach sleepers.
- The Plank should be supportive enough for heavier people.
Read the full Plank mattress review.
If you want a firm mattress but don’t want something extremely firm, the GhostBed could be a good choice. In my experience, the GhostBed felt like a 7.5/10 in terms of firmness. This is firm, but less firm than most of the other mattresses on this list.
Because of this, the GhostBed could be a good match for side sleepers who still want a firm mattress. Soft mattresses are usually the better choice for side sleepers, but the GhostBed should still provide some decent pressure relief. There is a layer of memory foam in the top layers, which should relieve some pressure on your shoulders and hips.
At the same time, the mattress is firm enough for back sleeping and stomach sleeping. When you are on your back, your hips should sink in while you feel good overall support. When you are on your stomach, you shouldn’t feel your hips sinking in too far.
Finally, the GhostBed is a very good value. Considering the quality, durable components found in the GhostBed, I would expect it to cost more.
What Makes The GhostBed Stand Out?
- It is a great mattress for those who want a firm mattress but not something extremely firm.
- The GhostBed should be a good option for back sleepers and stomach sleepers of many sizes.
- The mattress should offer better pressure relief than most of these other mattresses.
- The GhostBed is a good value mattress.
Read the full GhostBed mattress review.
If you want a firm mattress, but you want to avoid potentially harmful chemicals, the Awara could be right for you. The Awara features all-natural Dunlop latex over supportive coils. The Dunlop latex is sustainably sourced and does not contain harmful chemicals.
The Awara felt like an 8/10 in terms of firmness. The mattress should be a good match for both back and stomach sleeping. If you sleep on your back, your hips should sink in just a bit. If you sleep on your stomach, your hips shouldn’t sink in at all. This should help your spine stay in neutral alignment.
Heavier people should also feel properly supported on the Awara mattress. The Dunlop latex and coils should be able to handle a good amount of weight. Even heavier stomach sleepers should feel right at home on the Awara.
Those who want a firm mattress that is all-natural, eco-friendly, and free of harmful chemicals should definitely take a look at the Awara mattress.
What Makes The Awara Stand Out?
- It is all-natural and does not contain harmful chemicals.
- The Awara is firm and a good match for back and stomach sleepers.
- The mattress is supportive enough for heavier sleepers.
- The Awara should be a cooler sleeping mattress.
Read the full Awara mattress review.
Best For Lightweight Sleepers
The Lull mattress is the least firm mattress on this list. It is only a 7/10 on a firmness scale, so while it is still very supportive, it is softer than these other mattresses.
The Lull features memory foam, transition foam, and a base layer. Together, they make the mattress just firmer than average.
This mattress is a great match for lightweight sleepers who want something firmer. With the other mattresses on this list, you might not be heavy enough to really press in. Because of this, they could feel much firmer to you. On the Lull, you should feel the right amount of firmness.
If you are lightweight, the mattress should be a good match for all three sleeping positions. When you are on your back and stomach, you should feel nice support. When you are on your side, you should feel good pressure relief.
Whether you are lightweight or not, the Lull should be great for back sleeping. The mattress features a balance of comfort and support. Your hips sink in the right amount, and the top layers also contour to the curves of your body.
For lightweight people or those of don’t want something quite so firm, the Lull could be a great match.
What Makes The Lull Stand Out?
- It is a firm mattress but not too firm.
- The Lull should be supportive enough for lightweight sleepers.
- Lightweight sleepers should also find the mattress comfortable for side sleeping.
- Back sleepers of all weights will like the Lull’s balance of comfort and support.
Read the full Lull mattress review.
Marten is a staff writer for us. He has a much different body type than me: He is 6’7″ and weighs about 230 lb; I am 5’9″ and 160 lb. Here is what he thought about these mattresses:
As a larger person, I require a very firm mattress for back and stomach sleeping. I want to talk about how I felt on all five mattresses.
The Plank mattress is flippable, so you get a firm side and an ultra-firm side. Both sides felt too firm for back sleeping. For stomach sleeping, they were both properly supportive.
I am a big fan of the Awara for stomach sleeping. However, the mattress is too firm for back and side sleeping.
The GhostBed is a good match for me when I am back and stomach sleeping. It is supportive enough so that my hips don’t bow in when I am on my stomach. When I am on my back, my hips get to sink in just a bit.
The Lull is a little bit too soft for me when I am stomach sleeping and too firm when I am side sleeping. When I am back sleeping, the mattress is fantastic. My hips sink in the right amount, and I feel nice lumbar support.
The Helix mattresses are great because the company will customize the mattresses to meet your needs. If you are a larger person, you can choose the Helix PLUS, which is made specifically for larger people.
As Marten discovered, firmer mattresses are usually a good fit for larger people. If you are on the larger side, one of these mattresses could definitely give you the support you need.
Who Should Get A Firm Mattress?
Firmness is, of course, subjective. However, most will agree that these five mattresses are on the firmer side. Besides those who simply like the feel of a firm mattress, who should consider getting a firmer mattress?
- Stomach sleepers. If you sleep primarily on your stomach, a firm mattress is the way to go. You want to make sure you’re getting enough support on your hips. If not, they can bow into the mattress and cause your spine to get out of neutral alignment. When this happens, you could start to feel strain in your lower back.
- Back sleepers. Back sleepers will also want a firmer mattress, but not very firm. You want a mattress that will let your hips sink in just a bit. At the same time, you need that firmness and support to ensure that you don’t drop into the mattress.
- People who like to sleep on top of their mattress. If you don’t like to sink into your mattress, a firm mattress is a safe bet. Firmer mattresses usually don’t have the “give” that you find on softer mattresses. Because of this, you should be sleeping on top of your mattress as opposed to “in” it.
- Hot sleepers. When you sleep on top of your mattress, you have less of a chance of sleeping hot. In contrast, if you sink into a softer mattress (especially something with memory foam), you could feel yourself start to heat up. Memory foam can trap heat and direct it back at you. However, if you sleep on top of a firmer mattress, you have less chance of this happening.
Who Shouldn’t Get a Firm Mattress?
Firm mattresses are not for everyone. If you fit the following criteria, a firm mattress is probably not the best choice.
- Side sleepers. In general, firm mattresses are not the best match for side sleepers. Side sleepers usually require a mattress that will provide pressure relief for their shoulders and hips. Firm mattresses are not the best with pressure relief, so side sleepers should look for something softer.
- Those who like to sink into their mattress. If you like to sink into your mattress and feel enveloped by your mattress, a firm mattress is probably not the best choice for you. You will want to look for something softer, perhaps a mattress that contains memory foam.
In the end, a firm mattress can be a great fit for stomach sleepers, back sleepers, larger sleepers, and those who just want some extra support. If you’re in the market for a firmer mattress, definitely start with these five fantastic options.
Please leave any questions in the comments below!
Joe Auer is the editor of Mattress Clarity. He mainly focuses on mattress reviews and oversees the content across the site.
He likes things simple and take a straightforward, objective approach to his reviews. Joe has personally tested nearly 250 mattresses and always recommends people do their research before buying a new bed. He has been testing mattresses for over 5 years now, so he knows a thing or two when it comes to mattress selection. He has been cited as an authority in the industry by a number of large publications.
Joe has an undergraduate degree from Wake Forest University and an MBA from Columbia University.
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