When you think about an innerspring mattress, you’re probably picturing an old bed with rusty coils that would eventually poke your ribs and leave you feeling sore in the morning. Back in the day, innerspring mattress were pretty much our only choice, but they have come a very long way from being those super uncomfortable beds that we covered in blankets so we wouldn’t feel how lumpy they’d become.
Today, innerspring mattresses come with a lot of comfortable layers and cushioning, constructions which have boosted them to the top favorite types of mattresses that people buy nowadays. But what exactly are the different types of innerspring mattresses and what brands are worthy of your attention this year?
Innerspring Mattresses & Their Coils
If this is your first time inquiring about innerspring mattresses, you probably think that they all have the same types of coils. Guess again! When you hear about innerspring beds, you shouldn’t assume that they are made entirely out of coils, as the term refers to the support core of the mattress and not the overall construction.
However, I feel there’s a little bit of extra explaining required at this point. Innerspring mattresses usually have one layer on top/below the core of the bed, just to provide durability to the bed or extra cushioning for the sleeper. However, an innerspring mattress should never be confused with a hybrid, which is a mattress that can be made from innerspring and an abundance of other materials, like foam or latex.
It’s also important for you to know that innerspring mattresses can have coils that are connected to one other, or coils that are completely separated from one another. Naturally, the latter option is found in more expensive models, but it’s also the latest in bed coil “technology”, so you’ll find that the latest models on the market now come with individually wrapped coils.
Those that do bring one huge advantage to the table: better support. When a mattress has coils that are connected to each other and you apply pressure on a certain part of the mattress, the domino effect will cause all the surrounding coils to collapse, basically making a hole in bed that’s larger than what your body needs.
With individually wrapped coils, the support of the mattress will only compress under the direct pressure applied by your body. This means that you will receive contouring and support where you need it. Also, this brings forth one more advantage: better motion isolation. When you move, you will cause coils that are connected to those beneath you to move as well. These movements can disrupt the sleep of your partner, but with individually wrapped coils, that’s no longer the case.
Types of Coils
Now that you know the basics of what makes and innerspring mattress and how coils can be connected and separated from one another, let’s talk about the actual types of coils that you’ll find in a bed:
- Bonnell coils are the classic type that you are probably familiar with by now. They are the oldest type of coil used and are still quite common in today’s mattresses as well. They have a specific hourglass shape and are made from tempered steel. This type of coil usually comes reinforced with low-gauge wire and are joined together using wires in the shape of spirals. Bonnell coils are popular because they can resist powerful compression and still maintain their durability. Mattresses that use this type of coils are usually found in hotels or hospitals.
- Continuous wire coils are typically resilient and stable, which is a consequence of their design. They are characterized by rows made from long and singular wires that are used to create circular shapes. Another characteristic is the use of helicals on both sides. While it’s true that continuous wire coils create a durable mattress, they aren’t all that great in providing the sleeper with the right amount of spinal support.
- Offset coils are hourglass-shaped and are made from tempered steel and joined with helicals. Offset coils come in two different types. The first type of the double offset coil, which is straightened at the top and bottom (which makes it provide more support), and the second is the free-arm offset coil (which isn’t connected to the coils next to it). All these three types of coils are usually found in more expensive mattresses.
- Marshall coils are what the market now referred to as the pocketed coils. These coils are individually wrapped in a piece of fabric, which is why they are sometimes known as encased coils. The fabric is attached to each coil using hot glue. The mattresses that now used pocketed coils are extremely sought after as they can offer a higher level of support, while also improving motion isolation features. These are the most expensive mattresses on the market, but because the coil itself used in the construction is thin and not made of tempered steel, these are also the less durable out of all innerspring mattresses.
Top 5 Innerspring Mattress Reviews
In the following paragraphs we’re going to show you the best innerspring and innerspring hybrid mattresses that money can currently buy. Stick around, as we’ve added something for those on a tight budget, something for side sleepers, a bed for organic bedding fans, but also what we consider to be the best innerspring mattress at the time.
You know that we like to be honest about the product we review, which is why we’re going to be completely blunt about our opinion of the Linenspa mattress: it is not the most comfortable product out there. It is, however, a good choice for an occasional mattress, perhaps one for the guest bedroom.
It is a bed made with tempered steel coils and measures 6 inches in height. It is a good mattress to sleep for a few nights, but not one for year-round use. Why? Because the only comfort layers that you get on top of the coil support is a quilted fabric cover combines with a really this layer made from memory foam. The transition between the foam and the coils is done by a thin felt pad which is mostly there to protect the foam from coming in contact with the coils.
The biggest assets of the Linenspa mattress are the durability and the price point. It is a product that comes with a decent warranty period, and is available in all standard bed sized. Oh, did we mention that this is quite a hit with customers?
Who Should Purchase This?
This mattress is about as inexpensive as they get, so if you’re really on a tight budget and don’t need all those fancy comfort layers (which we totally love, by the way) and you just need a cheaper mattress for the guest bedroom, this is your best investment.
- Extremely affordable.
- Made with tempered steel coils.
- Very durable.
- Soft cover.
- Good for guest bedrooms.
- Lacks support.
- Not intended for year-round use.
The Avocado Green mattress is the kind of bed that made such a huge impression since it was first launch, that every time a new and potentially better mattress surfaces, people will always compare it to the Avocado. It is not the cheapest bed out there, but it one of the market’s best organic mattress, no doubt.
Read Our Full Review: Our 2019 Avocado Green Mattress Review: Experience the Best
Made with organic cotton and wool, plus certified latex that’s harvested from sustainable sources, the Avocado Green is a bed focused on providing comfort and support without delivering questionable materials. The core of the mattress is a very generous layer of pocketed coils that are divided into 5 zones designed to offer different levels of support for key parts of your body that most need it.
One of the things that make the Avocado Green a champion in its category is the fact that, despite the rather thin layer of latex that stands between you and the coils, the only thing that really hints you’re sleeping on an innerspring mattress is the nice bounce you get from it.
Who Should Buy This?
If you are a fan of green bedding and want to know that the mattress you’re sleeping on is made with materials that support the environment, the Avocado Green is the right choice for you. It’s also a great bed for back sleepers, but also for those who love the bounce given by the latex and innerspring combo.
- Organic materials.
- Comfortable cotton and wool cover.
- Great for back sleepers.
- 5 zones of support.
- Nice bounce.
- Bad motion isolation.
Did you know that Saatva launched an amazing mattress designed for heavyweight sleepers? It’s called the Saatva HD, and it has an absolute fierce construction that will provide support for people who have a few extra pounds, but without compromising the durability that you want in a bed (especially in one with this spicy price).
Read Our Full Review: Our Saatva Mattress Review: What Makes It So Amazing?
While the HD is not an inexpensive bed, the construction perfectly justifies the price. It is made with an organic pillow top that provides extra cushioning and has received the toral antimicrobial fabric treatment. Then you have a generous layer of Talalay latex that provides excellent support and stops your body in its tracks, not allowing it to sink into the mattress. Then you have the comfort layers, which are a combination of different types of foam that will aid with pressure relief.
The core of the mattress is made with 12.5-gauge tempered steel coils that aren’t just durable, but also help the mattress breathe. However, because these are not individually wrapped, the mattress doesn’t do a very good job at motion isolation, which could pose a problem for couples where one is a light sleeper. But, other than that, the Saatva HD is probably the best innerspring mattress for heavyweight people at the current time.
Who Should Purchase This?
Do you weigh between 300 and 500 pounds? Mattress shopping doesn’t have to be difficult anymore, as the Saatva HD can support up to 500 pounds on each side in models that are larger than a Full.
- Keeps sleeper on top of the bed.
- Organic cotton cover.
- 5-zone support.
- White glove delivery.
- Poor motion isolation.
In our round-ups, we explore products provided by many different brands in order to choose the best one. As much as we hate repetition, Saatva is a brand that deserves one extra spot today, because they make what we believe to be the best innerspring mattress. Of course, this is not carved in stone (as advertised teaches you: the best can always be replaced by something better, unlike the first), but let me show you what makes this mattress truly awesome.
First off, we have to talk about how soft the cover feels. The Saatva debuts with an organic cotton cover that feels very cool to the touch, but the really cool thing is that it’s quilted with a small amount of foam. It’s just enough to give the bed a very soft feel from the moment you lie down. So, basically, you have a pillow top that combines organic cotton and foam, and then you move on straight to the coil system.
What makes the Saatva a unique mattress is the fact that it has not one, but two layers of coils, each with its own specific purpose, making this the true innerspring mattress of the day, instead of being just a hybrid. The first layer is made from individually wrapped coils that will prevent you from sinking into the mattress as you lie down.
The second layer is made of steel coils and foam edge support. these 13-gauge coils are extremely tough and will give the bed shape and support in the long run. That means that the Saatva mattress is very unlikely to sag in the near future. Plus, can you imagine how breathable a mattress with two coil layers is?
Who Should Purchase This?
The Saatva Classic is a mattress for innerspring lovers, for those who tend to sleep hot, for back sleepers who need spinal support, but also for people who appreciate a quality mattress.
- Highly breathable.
- Good for back sleepers.
- Durable construction.
- Good edge-to-edge support.
- Good for stomach sleepers.
- Too firm for side sleepers.
We’re quite subjective when it comes to Helix because it’s one of our favorite mattress brands. Why? Because they have a really generous product line that combines different fabrics and materials and densities in order to create mattresses for several types of sleepers. The Helix Midnight, for example, is designed to offer a medium firmness for people who like to sleep on the side.
There are plenty of things that make the Midnight one of the best innerspring beds for side sleepers: it isn’t too firm, so your body won’t feel sore because of pressure points, nor is it too soft to let your body sink in too deep into the mattress and cause the spine to rest in an unnatural position. It comes with plenty of memory foam on top of the spring core, which makes it comfortable enough to relieve pressure points.
It comes with a cover designed to prevent the bed from trapping heat onto its surface and causing you to make up with midnight sweats. Plus, the individually wrapped coils further increase airflow and prevent the mattress from transferring motion and waking your sleeping partner.
Who Should Purchase This?
Not only is the Helix mattress a really good bed for side sleepers, but its construction makes it perfect for couples who share a bed (and especially those who have at least one fussy sleepers).
- Good for side sleepers.
- Excellent for couples.
- Good motion isolation.
- Good edge support.
- Decent price.
- Comes with two free pillows.
- Not as breathable as expected.
Finding a good innerspring mattress is easier now that you are no longer limited in terms of options. However, there are so many good models out there, that’s what really makes the purchasing choice difficult. To be perfectly blunt, the best innerspring mattresses on the market are actually innerspring hybrids, because even the highest-quality coil system needs cushioning layers above it, so they can’t be full innerspring beds. They have to be combined with other materials.
The most important thing to keep in mind is that everyone has a need for a different mattress, and it’s how the manufacturer combines densities and materials that will actually make a mattress more or less suitable for a particular type of sleeper.