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Last Updated May 29, 2023
A hybrid mattress is a fusion of a traditional spring mattress and multiple layers of foam, latex, and gel with an innerspring system in it. It gives you the sturdy feel of a spring mattress while offering the comfort of a foam mattress.
Why is it called a hybrid? Well, it sounds like more of a marketing term by mattress firms. But if you look closely, it does offer you the best from both worlds of mattresses - spring and foam ones. Still, a hybrid mattress might not be just a combination of spring and foams. It can have cotton, wool, and cashmere as its components too.
Let's look into the world of hybrid mattresses, how they differ from traditional ones, and what benefits they bring to you for a good night’s sleep.
Before memory foam and hybrid mattresses became popular, the regular innerspring mattress was the one that used to cater to a generation's sleep needs. Hybrid beds focus on modern sleep problems like motion transfer and care for the sleeping positions to suit the spinal curvature of a person. Regular innerspring beds are on the more firm side and are made to have more bounce and last long.
On average, an innerspring model would last for 7-8 years if properly cared for. Besides, they are light and suitable for plus-size sleepers seeking value and comfort in a mattress. While all points might give the regular bed a head start, let's understand what makes a hybrid mattress different from a regular one. And we will also know how it captured the fancy of modern consumers:
|HYBRID MATTRESS||INNERSPRING MATTRESS|
|A hybrid mattress comes with a comfort layer of at least 2 inches thick with memory foam or latex. And that makes it deeper, thicker, and comfortable for the side sleepers.||An innerspring mattress has less than 2 inches of comfort support of foam. Usually, the comfort layer of a regular mattress has cotton or polyurethane foam. The firmness makes it good for stomach sleepers.|
|Hybrid mattresses are heavy and designed in such a way that you can't flip them and use another side. It has a top-to-bottom structure.
A sewn-in pillow top (for extra cushioning), comfort layer, support core, and a base layer make one side more responsive than the other. Also, that's why you can't flip them.
Light and flippable. Since they have no such top-to-bottom structure, they are not going to offer you, the sleeper, any body-conforming-responsive bounce.
Good for the ones who move their homes a lot.
|Most hybrid mattresses come with pocketed coils which means they are good at isolating motion transfer. Their thick foams and comfort layers, hybrid mattresses ensure that the activity doesn't disturb your sleeping partner when you move in your sleep.||Coils in a regular mattress can be of different natures, but most of the time, they are structured in connected fashion. And with little or firm cushion on top, a regular spring mattress can transfer motion a lot during your sleep, making it troubling for the side sleepers and your sleeping partner.|
If, at all, you are looking to buy a regular mattress, look for the ones with more coils in them. There are also spring mattresses with pocket springs, but they are on the costlier side as they offer reduced motion transfer than their counterparts. Finally, an innerspring mattress can be good for the plus-size, hot sleepers or the ones who sleep on their stomach, for they need proper spine support and airflow when sleeping.
But a hybrid mattress offers you a variety of options that go from medium soft to medium-firm cushioning. Not to mention, they isolate motion transfer and sagging, giving your body only much bounce that it needs.
If you remember the TV commercials for a number of memory foam mattresses from yesteryears, few things were consistent - one, slowly vanishing handprints and two, the multiple mentions of its 'cloud-like feeling.' Memory foam has many qualities that make it worth buying, but how good is a memory foam mattress compared to a hybrid one? Let's check out the similarities and differences and the qualities that would help you make a decision:
While a hybrid and a memory foam mattress are both thick in their comfort layers and good at limiting motion and relieving pressure off your body, you have to choose wisely. A mattress can make or break your sleep and resting schedule.
The memory foam mattress is made of poly-foam that can stretch and conform to pressure applied and heat conditions. It can have an open-cell structure mixed with copper, graphite, or gel to capture and release heat. It can have durable support sore or layers of foam, but it comes with no spring. The sole reason behind that sinking, cloud-like feeling. What else do you need to know? Have a glance over these differences.
|HYBRID MATTRESS||MEMORY FOAM MATTRESS|
|A hybrid mattress is well-structured from top to bottom and around edges with a support core made out of a 'pocket coil' system. This alone gives a hybrid mattress a better bounce and less sinkage along the sides.
Good motion isolation overall.
|Memory foam has no supporting core or coils; hence, they give the best soft, hugging feeling in the world of mattresses. But if you choose one with a high-density poly-foam core, then you change its firmness or softness. They give you excellent motion isolation but no edge support.|
|Most of the hybrid mattresses are heavy and noisy (due to coils).
But the coils also make a hybrid mattress more supportive and durable compared to a memory foam one.
|Contours your body like it's giving you a hug. A good choice for a side sleeper as it relieves more pressure points of the body.
Good for couples as movement on a memory foam mattress is really quiet but keep checking for sagging.
|Costly. A good hybrid mattress can go up to 2,000 USD.||Value buy. You can choose the firmness or softness levels and basis that it can go from 800 to 1200 USD.|
|It offers reasonable temperature control for people who sleep hot.||A memory foam mattress can overheat and tends to off-gas.|
|Heavy and difficult to clean.||Easy to clean and suitable for people with allergies.|
Clearly, the hybrid comes out as the winner for those looking out for durability and better sleep, but memory foam is still a favorite of many. For lack of explanation, the feel-good vibe a memory foam mattress provides is - simply unique (You would stay in bed and won't feel like going out). And for the ones who still wanna get up and go to work, leaving their personal cloud (mattress), hybrid is the way to go. But how are we going to find the one suitable for our needs? Time for quick pros and cons that might help you with your indecisive mind.
As hybrid becomes more of a marketing term and less of a category, it can be confusing to choose amongst a wide variety of mattresses. In our opinion, it isn't easy to pin down what defines a hybrid mattress. Is it bounce? Is it the material? A good hybrid mattress should have more comfort foam layers, less fibers, and better coil management within it.
Still, a hybrid mattress can’t fulfill all your wishes. So it is always better to look at what it can and what it can’t (unless you spend a fortune and customize it to your whims).
After all the comparisons and considerations, we have come to the conclusion that a hybrid mattress might not be suitable for everyone as a piece of bedding. So to buy one, you first need to understand how a hybrid can address your sleeping and resting concerns. It is essential to know as the market is filled with sub-standard products sold in the name of a hybrid.
1. If you sleep hot, that is, if your body needs more airflow while you sleep, you might need a hybrid mattress with a high-density latex foam comfort layer and spacious pocketed coils. Such mattresses can give more breathability to sleepers while keeping them comfortable.
2. Hybrid mattresses are also suitable for plus-size sleepers as these mattresses offer better coil depth and count while giving increased surface area and firmness compared to memory foam ones.
3. And people who are looking for a combination of qualities in their mattress. The best part about hybrid mattresses, apart from being popular now, is that they have a wide range. You can customize it as per your wish (although that would be a bit costly). They come with different coil gauges, count, patterns, and foam layers. You can even find ones made with certified organic materials and fibers or any other combination you want.
Clearly, a hybrid mattress can cater to your needs, but you must stay clear of the cheap, knock-off ones. But how do you find the one that’s made for you? Let’s find out together.
As mattress companies intensify their marketing and promotions, a buyer must be more aware of her choices. This can be a little difficult as we look at the vast world of mattresses and beddings because many things like foam, coils, and layers make a mattress what it is.
We start with layers. The most crucial aspect of a mattress, in this case, is a hybrid one. How thick should it be? What material should you choose?
A hybrid mattress has many layers - comfort, transition, and support. The Comfort layer is the topmost and very important as it decides the firmness or softness of the mattress. If you choose it to be too thin, you will have a firm surface good only for ascetics and people with backbone problems. On the other hand, if you make it too thick, you will get a softer feel, and you might miss your office for a day or two (Yes, it's that difficult to get out of it). Also not good for the old and physically challenged. The sweet spot is at least 2 inches of foam (of your choice, obviously) and pocketed coil support.
What do pocketed coils do to your hybrid? They stay in their 'pockets' or area and move independently. That reduces motion transfer and makes the core more responsive to your body weight while keeping the airflow nice and cool.
Also, when you are looking for foam layers. Try finding one with an open cell or gel memory foam - they further help cool down the mattress's temperature while you sleep on it. Open-cell has thousands of pockets, and gel-induced foam can diffuse and spread body heat, ultimately improving your resting experience.
We know that from their decades of advertising, memory foam mattresses still have imprints in your mind (pun intended), but soft mattresses are not suitable for everyone. They are categorically bad for plus-size and stomach sleepers as they offer little or no lumbar support for the back. Add 'that sinking feeling' too. Look for a medium to medium-firm mattress as such a construct would be good for everyone - from back sleepers to side and plus-size.
Pocketed coils are individually wrapped coils that are independent of each other. These coils are usually covered in fabric casing and cylindrical. A good hybrid mattress often has a closed coil system, allowing for better motion isolation, pressure point relief, flexibility, good spinal support, and less noise. However, such coils can increase the cost of your mattress unless you are cautious about the count and thickness of coils.
Usually, a coil count of 400-1000 is good enough. However, for a King size mattress, it can go beyond that. Also, remember that adding more coils can give you more support and motion control, but doing that can increase your budget by 300 to 1500 USD.
Most hybrid mattress firms develop products that are good for both worlds - The world of the firm as well as soft mattresses. Coil gauge or thickness is another measure to help you pick a better mattress. For example, a coil gauge of 14 would be good for a firm mattress.
What else do you need to know? Pocketed coils are good for back pain, and they offer good support to stomach sleepers as well. One thing you need to take care of is uneven sagging or soft spots, as they might appear after prolonged usage. Apart from that, pocketed coils have been the USP of most hybrid mattresses out there.
1. Bonnell Coils
Bonnell or Open coils are primarily found in a traditional innerspring mattress. However, hybrid mattresses are available with Bonnell coils beneath their comfort layers. But most hybrid mattresses promote pocketed coils because they offer better motion isolation than Bonnell coils and add to the final cost of a mattress.
2. Continuous Wire Coils
Another open type that is often deployed in innerspring mattresses is the system of Continuous Wire Coils. They are cheaper and durable. And since they are made from one continuous long wire (hence the name), they have reasonably regular coil density and offer consistent support. But they don’t contour a body shape like Bonnell coils or Pocketed coils would. Plus no motion isolation here, so needless to say that good hybrid mattresses avoid using these types of coils.
3. Offset Coils
You can call them a better version of Bonnel coils as they offer a better, hourglass-shaped structure along with a flat top and bottom spring. Both of these improvements help support different body types. In addition, they are somewhat better at motion isolation than their other open-coil-type mattresses. But still, you will find them mainly in the traditional mattresses, i.e., Innerspring ones.
Many hybrid mattresses use latex as a preferred material for constructing their comfort layer. Latex can be suitable for active and hot sleepers. If your mattress manufacturer is using good organic latex, then it can be bouncier, breathable, and durable compared to a memory foam one.
But yes, a latex mattress can add up to cost especially if you are looking for a bigger-sized mattress. For example, the cost of a queen-size mattress can go to almost 2000 USD. Add more if you are using good-quality natural latex.
But at the same time, the durability of such quality material evens out the investment. Good latex mattresses have lasted more than 20 years. If a latex mattress doesn’t appeal to you, you can always get a hybrid mattress that combines both comfort and durability while making it affordable. Ensure that the comfort layer of your hybrid mattress stays at least 1-2 inches thick.
Memory foam, just like latex foam, helps form the comfort layer of a hybrid mattress. Here, the point to be noted is unlike the whole memory foam mattress, a hybrid takes the best quality of it and merges the same with the best quality of an innerspring mattress.
How? You see, the comfort layer is only to contour the body properly and give the sleeper desired support. Multiple polyurethane layers of memory foam reduce motion transfer and outline the natural curvature of the human body. At the same time, pocketed springs below the comfort layer along with the transition layer keep the bed firm.
So using memory foam smartly helps a hybrid mattress manufacturer keep the product firm and breathable.
Polyfoam usually goes in the transition layer of a hybrid mattress. Therefore, it is good to know if your mattress has such a transition layer. Poly-Foam comes in two types - Low density and High Density.
If your mattress has high-density poly foam in its transitional sections, that can be helpful in many ways. Number one, it increases your bed’s durability without increasing your budget significantly. And number two, it takes the load off (literally) from the support layer. So there you go. Get the best foam to enhance the overall performance of your hybrid mattress.
A good hybrid mattress, or any mattress for that matter, is not just for sleeping. It can also be used for sitting, watching TV, and cuddling with your partner. The idea of strong edge support here is that you should be able to do all these activities and be able to plop in or head out whenever you feel so.
A memory foam mattress makes it challenging for sleepers to get out of the bed once they have become comfortable. An innerspring makes it more awkward by transferring the movement of one person getting out to another person just trying to sleep. Finally, a hybrid chooses the middle and better path with its strong edge support.
It also helps plus-size sleepers, couples, older people, or people with mobility problems. You can get edge support in many ways - by putting a foam encasement around the mattress's perimeter, a single row of pocket springs on all sides, or simply encasing the mattress with steel rod pipes.
Every option comes with its advantages and disadvantages. Steel pipes provide proper support, and they are the least expensive of every edge support construction listed above. But they can bend over time and might not be as durable as you think. Foam encasement can be good, but they mainly work as markers and are not that supportive on their own. It is always good to have a stabilizing perimeter with a combination of pocketed spring and foam encasement.
Firm edge support in a mattress ensures the sleepers' safety, keeps the bed in shape, and prevents the mattress from sagging.
Motion transfer happens in a mattress when the movement is shared among its partners. But you shouldn't feel disturbed when your partner gets up at night, hence motion isolation. Although it is not a perfected technique, mattresses with latex or memory foam give good motion isolation.
The case of a hybrid mattress is peculiar here because a hybrid mattress can combine the good qualities of memory foam, latex foam, and innerspring mattress. While memory foam is excellent at giving you your own space in your bed, it can be difficult for elderly or heavyweight people to get out or to move out from memory foam. Innerspring is firm, but they will let your partner know about your movement.
What a hybrid mattress does is that it keeps memory foam or latex foam at the comfort layer, which helps them absorb surface-level motion. And the poly-foam support core balances it with its high-density material. Pocketed springs give firmness to the mattress, making it comfortable for a sleeper to move without disturbing her partner.
The ability to regulate temperature is how hybrid mattresses captured the fancy of a whole generation. While one can feel hot in memory foam or too cold while sleeping on an innerspring mattress, a hybrid mattress can be good for heavy and hot sleepers.
But be cautious of the material too. A hybrid mattress with its comfort layer made out of foam or polyurethane, or viscoelastic memory foam might not be that good for hot sleepers. Instead, opt for plant-based material like natural latex for the comfort layer. Choose mattresses with cooling gels and breathable fabric like wool or cotton as the transition layer.
If the mattress comes with a pocketed spring or comes in box springs, or fits on a platform with open slats, you can be sure about the airflow and breathability. Remember, a good cooling mattress will always have lighter upper layers, better fabric padding, and spaced-out coil springs giving you the most out of your sleep.
A hybrid mattress, if carefully designed, can help out as excellent pressure relief to our body’s pain points. The comfort layer of a hybrid contours spinal column and pocketed springs with their spaced-out design provide enough airflow.
However, hybrid mattress manufacturers often use cheap foam for their comfort layers. And look for a transition layer and the base if you are looking for a mattress that should support your body. Look if it offers support for your head and if it has a core layer for supporting the rest of your body. A combination of foam, gel, and enough air pockets can help you relax on the bed without worrying about your back.
Body weight and sleeping position can be crucial factors in your mattress buying journey.
While side sleeping is good for pregnant ladies, it also helps back pain and strain. Avoid side sleeping if you’re a heart patient as it increases pressure on your heart.
Side sleepers should get a memory foam or pillow top mattress. They are slightly softer than hybrid or innerspring ones. However, a good hybrid mattress with memory foam as a comfort layer can be helpful too. But if you are looking for something more responsive along with a balance of body-contouring and springiness, you should go for an all-latex mattress or a latex-foam hybrid. A latex mattress also gives better edge support and lesser noise when you compare them to memory foam or innerspring ones respectively.
And whenever you are going to buy a latex one, ensure to check for GOLS (Global Organic Latex Standard). With latex, it is possible to get a mattress with less impact on the environment and more support and pressure relief for you.
Back sleeping is the best form of sleeping as it naturally complements your spine alignment. Although it might not be the best sleeping position for people with acid reflux, snoring problems, or pregnancy.
People who sleep on their backs tend to breathe at full capacity. Since back sleepers need proper support for their spine, a medium-firm mattress with a thin comfort layer would work fine. Hybrid mattresses with a combination of pocketed coils and firm, high-density foam should be good for back sleepers.
It is not the best sleeping position. Sleeping on your stomach can cause back pain if your spine is not aligned correctly. In addition, it can restrict airflow and make you hot while sleeping. And if you take a thick pillow, you might wake up with a pain in your neck.
The best mattress for a stomach sleeper would be a firm one: no memory foam mattress, no soft and squishy beds. Instead, a hybrid mattress with good coil strength and less foam on its comfort layer would keep those sleepers straight. Also, keep a thinner pillow (if possible, keep no pillow) for your head.
It is difficult to recommend a particular mattress type for combination sleepers. But if you are one and confused about which mattress to choose, always go for a medium firm hybrid one. Memory foam mattresses are only good for lightweight, back sleepers as they put less pressure on their bed. For everyone else, keeping the body comfortable is paramount, so choosing the right mattress is.
Those who don’t fall into the lightweight category need not worry, as even conventional mattresses can support up to 250 pounds. A queen or king-size mattress can take as much load as 500 pounds. Of course, you can always check for the weight limit a mattress offers. The weight limit offered by a mattress reveals many things about it - from longevity to safety.
Hybrid mattresses again walk with the cake in this category as they come with a combination unlike any other mattress out there. Not only can a hybrid mattress offer you firm support with its usage of latex and high-density foam in comfort and transition layers, but it can also keep your spines aligned with good, strong steel coils just like the traditional innerspring ones.
A good hybrid mattress gives you motion isolation so that even if one partner comes in plus-size, it won’t affect another sleeping partner much with their movements.
So now, as you know about the various features of a good hybrid mattress, what size do you begin with? Or how do you find a mattress size that’s good for your home? Let’s take a quick look.
This size is suitable for tall sleepers as it comes in the dimensions of 72 by 84 inches. Its width makes it the best option for couples and families sharing the bed with small children.
As the name suggests, this size truly signifies living life king size. At 76 by 80 inches, this is the widest size available in mattresses and gives enough room to couples and families.
Good for a single adult needing their own space. Good for couples who want to snuggle. And good to put in your master bedroom for its efficient space-saving size (60 by 80 Inches).
A full mattress size (54 by 75 Inches) might be good for a single adult, but it is not that efficient for couples. However, you can put a full mattress in your guest room.
Good for taller people or growing teens. At 38 by 80 Inches, a twin XL mattress can be good for your guests. It is also less expensive compared to the above options.
A twin mattress size is okay for smaller children who are growing up and teenagers. You can use it in bunk beds for your kids. It might be good for smaller rooms of 7 by 10 ft.
Now that you have planned to bring your chosen 'hybrid' home, you should also keep in mind one thing - they are heavy! A hybrid mattress is made of comfort layers, foam, gels, fibers, coils, and springs, so it is anything but natural to expect that you might need to do some heavy lifting.
And more than you, it will be the foundation on which you keep your mattress, which needs to do the heavy lifting, literally all the time.
A mattress foundation with a metal or wooden frame with slats properly making room for fittings should be helpful.
Or else you can get a platform bed. It also has frames with slats. But with a platform bed, you always need to check the height from the ground. You keep it less than 24 inches, and it might not be that comfortable for the elderly or anyone with some physical issue in your home.
And do not, we repeat, do not get a box spring for your mattress. First and foremost, they are never a good base with their weak spring network unable to take a load of your hybrid. The second thing is that even many mattress companies caution against it. So unless you use a regular, innerspring mattress, it is better to avoid box spring foundation for a hybrid mattress.
On average, a hybrid mattress lasts around 7-8 years. However, some manufacturing companies claim that its longevity can touch almost ten years or more with good care and good quality investment in a hybrid mattress.
The longevity of a mattress depends on the quality of material used, how much weight limit it can support, and how people are sleeping on it. Not to mention how they are caring for it. A hybrid mattress has multiple layers like foam, fabric, and springs along with wooden and steel frames around it.
Say, it will be durable if you buy a hybrid with latex or high-density foam as its comfort layer. The same can’t be said about the cheap ones. Weight is another factor. A mattress might sag prematurely for a plus-size sleeper, and for a lightweight sleeper, it might not.
Many hybrids can be rotated but not flipped because they have a base layer and a pillow top layer designed specifically. Also, doing that might void your mattress warranty, so don’t do that.
Consider buying a mattress as an investment in your sleep and well-being. And if it lasts longer than you expected, that’s a bonus. Since we are moving into the budget and investment zone, let’s look at how much a hybrid mattress can impact your monthly(or yearly) run.
If you are lucky, you can find great ones at $1,000, depending on the sale seasons. Otherwise, a good hybrid mattress can go upwards of $1,500 again, depending on many factors like - materials used, how many layers there are, what size you are looking for, etc.
The sole reason for hybrid mattresses being on the pricey side is their combination of foam and springs. This puts them in a category where you can mix and match as per your likeability. You can think of buying one with more coils in it. More coils would mean more flexibility and durability for you, but it can also increase the overall cost. The same goes with layers of foam or fabric you choose. The kind of technology that goes into creating a hybrid along with added features can increase the cost of a mattress.
Hybrid mattresses fall right between a firm regular innerspring and a softer memory foam one. And it has all the right reasons to belong in the middle. First, it gives you variety - you can choose the kind of foam that goes into the number of layers it should have. Secondly, it also gives you a range to select the strength and quality of coils to the foundation you need to put this 'heavy' baby on.
So here we come, at this crossroad, where you have to decide what's best for you.
With a wide variety and the proper comfort quotients, it is a long-term investment for your resting and sleeping needs. But before heading to a supermarket to buy one mattress straight away, keep a few things in mind.
1. Get as close to buying the one with natural latex in it. A hybrid mattress with natural latex has more bounce than memory foam and is more durable than an innerspring mattress. Check if they are perforated. One with perforation provides more air circulation and keeps you cool during sleep.
2. Try to find out if the foam used in comfort layers has been treated with chemicals, toxic glue, or gels. Often it happens that when a mattress gets old, it releases toxins. And when you are sleeping on a mattress heavily processed and blended with chemicals or synthetic, petrochemical products, they might have chemical residues, which can be troubling for asthmatic or allergic patients.
3. If possible, try to get a mattress with natural wool and organic cotton. Good quality wool, if procured and processed naturally, can keep you warm during the winter and cool during the summers. They are also very good fire retardants. Organic cotton keeps your mattress comfortable and breathable in all seasons.
If you are looking for a particular kind of mattress that resonates with your sleeping style or body type, you can visit these blogs from our team.
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Disclaimer: What is said in this article has been referenced from multiple sources and is intended only for educational and informational purposes. Please note that no content in this article is a substitute for professional advice from a qualified doctor or healthcare provider. Always consult an experienced doctor with any concerns you may have regarding a health condition or treatment, and never disregard any medical suggestions or delay in seeking treatment because of something you read here.