Welcome to the wild, wild world of mattress shopping – For the uninitiated, looking for a comfortable mattress can be stressful, tiring, and downright overwhelming.
Over the last number of years, I have reviewed foam mattresses of all different shapes and sizes, and two of the most popular bed-in-a-box brands are Zinus and Casper – Zinus offers a number of different models, and I personally reviewed the 12″ Cooling Gel Memory Foam mattress.
While I have tried all of the different Casper models, I want to see how this Zinus model compares to the original Casper mattress, the company’s best seller.
So, don’t stress out about buying that new mattress, because in my Zinus vs Casper comparison, I have the information that mattress buyers need in order to choose.
- The Zinus and Casper are both all-foam mattresses.
- Both mattresses contain memory foam somewhere in their construction.
- These mattresses feature very similar base layers that consist of pretty standard polyfoam.
- The Zinus and Casper are both close to a 6/10, a bit softer-than-average of the mattresses I’ve reviewed.
- The Zinus 12” is significantly more affordable than the Casper mattress.
- The Zinus has a classic memory foam feel, but the Casper has more of a balanced foam feel that mixes latex and memory foam-like qualities.
- The Zinus and Casper feature some very different materials and their constructions are quite different as well.
- The Casper features a zoned construction that will vary the firmness of the mattress, but the Zinus features no such construction.
- The Zinus mattress is 12” tall and consists of 4 layers in total.
- The Zinus’ cover is thin and smooth and shouldn’t affect the feel of the mattress.
- The top layer is 3” of gel memory foam.
- Next, there is a foam transition layer.
- Below that lies 3.5” of high-density foam.
- The base layer is 3.5” of high-density support foam.
Read the full Zinus mattress review
- The Casper is 12” tall.
- The Casper mattress’ cover is also thin and soft.
- On top, there are 1.5” of a latex-like foam.
- Below that is 1.5″ of memory foam.
- Under that, there is a 1.5” layer of zoned transition foam.
- Finally, there are 7” of durable support foam.
Read the full Casper mattress review
Zinus Vs Casper – Construction Notes
- The Casper’s transition layer is zoned, meaning the center of that layer is firmer than the areas under the shoulders, knees, and legs, and this makes the mattress feel firmer when one is lying on the back or stomach and softer while lying on the side.
- The Zinus actually features two base layers and there are some air channels between the two, which allows for air to flow through the mattress. The memory foam layer is also infused with cooling gel and, combining this with the good airflow, the Zinus should not be sleeping too hot.
- That being said, the Casper should sleep cooler than the Zinus because it features foams that are, for the most part, breathable and open-celled. Even though the Zinus features cooling gel, the Casper should sleep less hot.
- In general, the Casper features some higher density foam which should be more durable than the foam found in the Zinus, and this means the Casper should be longer-lasting and could be a better longterm investment.
- The construction of these two mattresses is going to give them different feels. The Casper is more responsive and, with its zoning, will feel firmer or softer in different areas of the mattress, and the Zinus will have more of soft memory foam feel across the entire mattress and will not vary in firmness.
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For me, both the Zinus and Casper have a firmness of 6/10 because they both have some very soft top layers and then some more supportive layers beneath those. Lying on both mattresses, they feel softer-than-average, but it is worth noting again that the Casper mattress will feel firmer or softer depending on one’s sleeping position.
While I thought both mattresses were supportive enough for back sleeping, I did feel better on the Casper mattress. The zoning provides extra lumbar support, and my hips are allowed to sink in just the right amount, so I believe most back sleepers will prefer sleeping on the Casper.
I am feeling great pressure relief when I side sleep on both the Zinus and Casper mattress because both mattresses are quite soft, and I am feeling little pressure on my shoulders and hips. Also, the Casper’s shoulder area is softer than the center of the mattress, so I am getting some extra pressure relief there.
Stomach sleeping, the Zinus mattress is too soft for me. I don’t feel like I am getting enough support under my hips, so the center of my body is bowing into the mattress. Lying on the Casper, however, the zoning is giving me plenty of support.
As I mentioned above, the Zinus and Casper are slightly different in regard to feel. The Zinus has a uniform, classic memory foam feel that lets me slowing sink into the mattress. The Casper is more responsive and has more of a balanced foam feel. Most people will be sleeping on top of the Casper and sink into the Zinus.
Motion Transfer Differences
It is a good idea for couples to find a mattress that features great motion isolation. They want to make sure that their mattress isolates each partner’s movements to their respective side of the mattress.
When it comes to motion transfer, memory foam is one of the best materials. While the Casper contains memory foam, the Zinus has this material on top.
On the Zinus, I am seeing very little motion transfer. When I place a glass of water on one side of the mattress and press into the other side, I see almost no disturbance. Also, when I lie down and Marten gets in and out of bed on the other side, I don’t really feel his movements.
Edge Support Differences
Edge support is also very important for couples to consider. A mattress with good edge support will let both partners sleep all the way toward the edge. This means the couple won’t be stuck together at the center of the mattress.
Between these two mattresses, the Casper features better edge support. Sitting down near the edge of the Casper, I feel much more secure and, lying down near the edge, I feel less like I am going to roll off the mattress.
My thoughts on the Zinus and Casper are very much affected by my size and weight. I am 5’9” and weigh 160 lbs. To get another perspective on these two mattresses, I asked Marten, who is 6’7” and weighs 250 lbs, to come in and try out the Zinus and Casper. Here is what he had to say:
First off, speaking of firmness, I thought the Zinus and Casper were firmer than Joe thought. He thought they were close to a 6/10 in terms of firmness, and I thought they were more like a 7/10, a bit firmer-than-average. This is mainly due to my added weight, which is causing me to sink further into the mattress than Joe did.
Back sleeping on the Zinus, the mattress is a tad too soft for me. I could use some more support, especially under my lumbar area.
Moving to my side, I am getting some decent pressure relief from that soft memory foam. When I am stomach sleeping, however, the mattress is not supportive enough.
When I am back sleeping on the Casper, the mattress is a very good match for me. I feel the zoning under my lumbar area, and the mattress supports me overall.
While I am feeling a bit of pressure on my shoulders and hips when I move to my side, I still feel quite comfortable.
Moving to my stomach, the zoning is giving me a bit of support under my hips. However, those heavier people who just sleep on their stomachs should probably look for a firmer mattress.
In the end, heavier back sleepers should consider the Zinus, and both mattresses should work for heavier side sleepers. Heavier stomach sleepers should look for something firmer overall.
The Zinus Should Be A Better Fit For …
- Fans of memory foam. The Zinus features more of that classic memory foam feel that lets sleepers really sink into the mattress. Those who prefer to sleep more “in” their mattress while feeling the soft contouring of memory foam should like the Zinus.
- People looking to save money. The Zinus is more affordable than the Casper, so people who want to spend less upfront should consider the Zinus. It is a comfortable mattress sold for a value price.
- Couples. The Zinus exhibits better motion isolation and should be a better option for couples. Sleeping partners should not disturb one another on the Zinus because the memory foam cuts down on most motion transfer.
The Casper Should Be A Better Fit For …
- Combination sleepers. The Casper’s unique zoned construction makes it an ideal choice for combination sleepers of many sizes. Those who switch positions at night will feel enough support when they are on their back and stomach and the right amount of pressure relief when they are on their side.
- Those who are looking for a longterm investment. While the Casper costs more than the Zinus, it is still a very good deal when we consider durability. The Casper features higher-density foams and should stand up to more years of use when compared to the Zinus.
- Fans of a balanced foam feel. The Casper has a latex-like foam layer on top and then a memory foam layer beneath that. These layers give the mattress a balanced foam feel that is both soft and responsive. Fans of foam mattresses who want to move around easily should think about the Casper.
In the end, it shouldn’t be hard to pick between the Zinus and Casper mattresses. They both have a lot to offer, but the Zinus should work for couples who want to save some money, and the Casper should be better for combination sleepers who want something more durable.
Are Zinus and Casper memory foam mattresses?
Both the Zinus and Casper mattresses contain memory foam in their construction. The Zinus 12″ Gel Memory Foam Mattress has memory foam on top, and the Casper original mattress has it in the second layer.
Is the Zinus or Casper more affordable?
The Zinus mattresses are, in general, more affordable than the Casper mattresses. For instance, the Zinus 12″ Gel Memory Foam Mattress costs under $350 for a Queen-size, and the Casper currently costs just under $1000.
Is the Zinus or Casper more comfortable?
The Zinus and Casper are both comfortable mattresses that contain soft memory foam. They are both softer-than-average and should offer nice pressure relief for side sleepers.
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.