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Comfort is key when choosing a new mattress, and that means finding the right level of firmness.

The firmness of a mattress doesn’t refer to its level of support. Instead, mattress firmness refers to the top layer of the mattress — it’s what you feel when you lie down.

If you want a mattress that strikes a good balance between cushioning comfort and the support you need for a good night’s sleep, a medium-firm mattress may be a good choice. We rounded up 11 of the best options to help you get started.

We chose mattresses rated medium-firm by each brand. To narrow down the list, we considered:

  • Safety and brand reputation: All the medium-firm mattresses on our list comply with federal flammability standards and are made by reputable companies who stand by their products.
  • Materials certifications: We prioritized mattresses with third-party material certifications like CertiPUR-US, Global Organic Latex Standard (GOLS), and Global Organic Textile Standard (GOTS).
  • Free trials and warranties: Each mattress on our list comes with a free in-home trial and competitive warranty.
  • Customer reviews: We read through reviews for each mattress to see what customers are saying about them.

What does reputable mean, exactly?

When we describe a mattress company as reputable, we mean the brand:

  • displays a commitment to quality, safety, and customer service
  • hasn’t been involved in recent lawsuits
  • has transparent business practices

It can make a difference to know a company is doing things the right way, especially for a big-ticket purchase like a mattress.

Pricing guide

Prices are based on a queen-size mattress.

  • $ = under $1,000
  • $$ = $1,000–$1,600
  • $$$ = over $1,600

Firmness ratings

Most companies use a firmness scale from 1 to 10. One is the softest, and 10 is the firmest. A medium-firm mattress typically falls between 5 and 7.

Keep in mind this scale isn’t a universal definition. In other words, one brand’s 5 may feel a little different from another brand’s 5, and so on.

Best medium-firm mattress for back pain

Saatva Classic Mattress

  • Price: $$$
  • Type: hybrid
  • Height: 11.5 or 14.5 inches
  • Best for: back pain relief
  • Materials: memory foam, pocketed coils

The Saatva Classic mattress is available in three firmness levels, but Saatva says 82% of customers prefer the luxury firm mattress. Rated between a 5 and 7, it’s designed to offer a balance between cushioning and uplifting support. You can also add an optional adjustable base.

The Saatva mattress is recommended by leading chiropractors in the United States, and earned the Congress of Chiropractic State Association’s seal of approval. It comes with a 365-night home trial and free white glove delivery. It also has a limited lifetime warranty.


  • choice of three firmness levels and two heights
  • generous home trial and warranty


  • high price point
  • some customers complain about delivery issues

Buy the Saatva Classic Mattress online.

Best medium-firm mattress for an adjustable bed

Saatva Solaire Mattress

  • Price: $$$
  • Type: adjustable hybrid
  • Height: 13 in.
  • Best for: couples who can’t agree on a firmness level
  • Materials: latex, memory foam, air chambers

With 50 firmness options and six layers of comfort, the Saatva Solaire lets you choose the firmness level that suits you on any given night. An internal air chamber adjusts firmness gradually, while an organic cotton pillow top and memory foam layers provide cooling.

The mattress comes with a limited lifetime warranty, a 365-night in-home trial, and free white glove delivery and setup so you know how to use the remote properly. They’ll also haul away your old mattress upon request.


  • firmness is entirely customizable
  • generous home trial and warranty period
  • great choice for couples who have different firmness preferences


  • very high price point
  • some customers find it lacking in edge support

Buy the Saatva Solaire Mattress online.

Best medium-firm hybrid mattress

DreamCloud Luxury Hybrid Mattress

  • Price: $$
  • Type: hybrid
  • Height: 14 in.
  • Best for: couples trying to strike a compromise on firmness
  • Materials: memory foam, innerspring coils

The DreamCloud is a luxury hybrid mattress with a firmness of 6.5.

Individually wrapped coils and two layers of pressure-relieving gel memory foam adapt to your body to give support as you sleep. The quilted foam and cashmere top works to help regulate body temperature to minimize overheating. Plus, the mattresses use foams certified by CertiPUR-US standards.

Reviewers rave about the great blend of firmness and softness in the DreamCloud, which comes with a 365-night home trial, a lifetime warranty, and free shipping and returns.


  • good price point
  • very generous home trial and lifetime warranty
  • excellent reviews from thousands of happy customers


  • only one option for firmness
  • a small number of reviewers found the mattress too firm

Buy the DreamCloud Luxury Hybrid Mattress online.

Best organic medium-firm mattress for the money

Naturepedic Chorus Organic Mattress

  • Price: $$
  • Type: hybrid
  • Height: 10 in.
  • Best for: people who want organic materials at a reasonable price
  • Materials: foam, micro coils

The Naturepedic Chorus is an organic mattress made with a universal medium firmness level — think of it as the Goldilocks option. It’s designed to be just right for almost everyone.

Organic cotton and wool batting are combined with a layer of plant-based fiber made of non-GMO sugarcane. The Chorus mattress also features glueless support coils and micro coils for a supportive sleep surface.

The mattress ships free and has a 100-night sleep trial. Naturepedic also offers free returns and a 25-year limited warranty.


  • organic materials
  • free shipping and free returns


  • only one option for firmness
  • some reviewers find the mattress too firm

Buy the Naturepedic Chorus Organic Mattress online.

Best medium-firm mattress under $1,000

Tuft & Needle Original Mattress

  • Price: $
  • Type: foam
  • Height: 10 in.
  • Best for: sleepers on a budget
  • Materials: adaptive foam

The Tuft & Needle Original mattress is a medium-firm, all-foam option priced under $1,000. But you might pay even less if you purchase during one of the company’s frequent sales. The proprietary adaptive foam is CertiPUR-US-certified for pressure relief and support, and it features both graphite and gel for cooling. The mattress is designed to be universally comfortable, no matter how you sleep.

T&N mattresses come with a 100-night sleep trial, so you can test the firmness at home for yourself. You’ll also get free shipping and a 10-year warranty.


  • designed for universal comfort in all sleep positions
  • thousands of great reviews


  • all-foam design may not accommodate everyone
  • some reviewers report longevity and durability issues

Buy the Tuft & Needle Original Mattress online.

Best medium-firm foam mattress

Nest Bedding Quail Responsive Foam Mattress

  • Price: $$
  • Type: foam
  • Height: 10 in.
  • Best for: motion isolation
  • Materials: foam

Formerly known as the Love & Sleep mattress, the Quail is made with high-density, Greenguard Gold-certified foam and a cooling comfort layer. This combination gives this all-foam mattress a nice balance of bounce and support.

The nontoxic mattress is available in two firmness levels. Medium is listed at 5, with a blend of adaptive and supportive foam layers. Firm falls between 7 and 8, offering more support. Both options are made with cooling fabrics.

Try it at home for 365 nights with free shipping, free exchanges, and free returns. You’ll also get a limited lifetime warranty that covers manufacturing flaws and indentations of greater than 1 in.


  • cooling comfort layer adds bounce and minimizes the “stuck” sensation common with memory foam
  • very generous home trial


  • all-foam design may not accommodate all sleepers

Buy the Nest Bedding Quail Responsive Foam Mattress here.

Best medium-firm mattress for multi-position sleepers

Leesa Original Hybrid Mattress

  • Price: $$$
  • Type: hybrid
  • Height: 11 in.
  • Best for: multi-position sleepers
  • Materials: memory foam, pocketed coils

Rated as a 6 to 8 on the firmness scale, the Leesa Original Hybrid mattress should offer support no matter how you prefer to sleep — back, side, or stomach.

Body-contouring premium foams and more than 789 pocket springs work to offer pressure relief.

The Leesa Hybrid comes with a 100-night trial, free delivery, and a 10-year warranty.


  • supportive for all sleep styles
  • pressure-relieving design


  • higher price point
  • limited reviews

Buy the Leesa Original Hybrid Mattress online.

Best medium-firm mattress with a pillow top

Avocado Green Mattress

  • Price: $$$
  • Type: hybrid
  • Height: 13 in. (with pillow top)
  • Best for: sleepers who prioritize organic materials
  • Materials: latex, wool, cotton, steel coils

Avocado’s natural mattress is made with GOLS-certified latex and GOTS-certified wool and cotton, plus over 1,400 tempered steel coils arranged in five ergonomic zones.

The pillow top is an extra expense, but it adds two permanently attached additional layers of organic latex. The pillow top is rated as gentle-firm — a 6 on the firmness scale.

Avocado’s organic mattress comes with a 1-year trial and free shipping. It’s handmade in the U.S. and comes with a 25-year warranty.


  • GOLS- and GOTS-certified
  • generous trial period
  • choice of standard or pillow top


  • high price point
  • latex adds weight, so this mattress might be challenging for one person to move
  • pillow top is an extra expense

Buy the Avocado Green Mattress online.

Best medium-firm latex mattress

Nolah Natural 11″ Mattress

  • Price: $$$
  • Type: hybrid
  • Height: 11 in.
  • Best for: sleepers looking for temperature-regulating materials
  • Materials: Talalay latex, support coils

The Nolah Natural is made with environmentally friendly, hypoallergenic Talalay latex material and a supportive, zoned coil system. Latex is naturally temperature regulating, and Nolah added strategic hole punctures to the latex layers for increased cooling and breathability.

The latex layers in this mattress give it a medium-firm feel. The company rates it as 5 to 6, or what it calls a luxury-firm mattress. Talalay latex material is used to provide responsiveness and pressure relief.

Nolah offers a 120-night home trial with free shipping and a lifetime warranty.


  • cooling pressure relief
  • lifetime warranty
  • hypoallergenic and made with eco-friendly materials


  • higher price point
  • latex adds weight, potentially making it challenging for just one person to carry

Buy the Nolah Natural 11″ Mattress online.

Best cooling medium-firm mattress

Nolah Evolution 15″ Mattress

  • Price: $$$
  • Type: hybrid
  • Height: 15 in.
  • Best for: hot sleepers
  • Materials: foam, support coils

With the Evolution mattress, Nolah made our list again. This hybrid mattress is designed for cool, comfortable sleep, thanks to a cooling Euro top, cooling foams, and a breathable border gusset.

Customers have a choice of three firmness levels. Luxury firm is a 6 to 7 on the firmness scale, which makes it a good choice for the widest range of sleepers.

Hundreds of reviewers praise the Evolution mattress for its comfort. Nolah’s customer service gets high praise, too.


  • cooling technology
  • choice of firmness levels


  • high price point
  • seven layers make this a heavy mattress to move

Buy the Nolah Evolution 15″ Mattress online.

Most eco-friendly medium-firm mattress

Birch Luxe Natural Mattress

  • Price: $$$
  • Type: hybrid
  • Height: 11.5 in.
  • Best for: all sleeping positions
  • Materials: cashmere, wool, latex, pocketed coils

The Birch Luxe Natural mattress is made with nontoxic materials, including naturally cooling cotton, cashmere, wool, and latex. It has a zoned lumbar support layer for deeper contouring and full support along the edges of the mattress.

The mattress was designed to accommodate all sleeping positions and just about every kind of sleeper. Plus, it comes with certifications from GOTS and Greenguard Gold.

Birch offers a 100-night sleep trial and a 25-year warranty.


  • eco-friendly and nontoxic
  • generous warranty


  • high price point
  • reviews aren’t available for feedback from real customers

Buy the Birch Luxe Natural Mattress online.


  • appropriate for a wide range of sleepers
  • good option for alleviating lower back pain
  • helps maintain proper spinal alignment in all sleep positions
  • distributes weight evenly for more comfortable sleep
  • good compromise if you share your bed with someone who prefers a softer or firmer sleep surface than you do


  • may feel too firm for petite sleepers who prefer a soft sleep surface
  • may not be supportive or contouring enough for those with more weight

MattressPriceTypeHeightBest forMaterialsWarranty and trial
Saatva Classic Mattress$$$hybrid11.5 in. or 14.5 in.back pain reliefmemory foam, coilslimited lifetime; 365-night trial
Saatva Solaire Mattress$$$adjustable hybrid13 in.couples who can’t agree on a firmness levellatex, memory foam, air chamberslimited lifetime; 365-night trial
DreamCloud Luxury Hybrid Mattress$$hybrid14 in.couples trying to compromise on firmnessmemory foam, innerspring coilslifetime; 365-night trial
Naturepedic Chorus Organic Mattress$$hybrid10 in.those who want organic materials at a reasonable pricefoam, micro coils25-year limited; 100-night trial
Tuft & Needle Original Mattress$foam10 in.sleepers on a budgetadaptive foam10 years; 100-night trial
Nest Bedding Quail Responsive Foam Mattress$$foam 10 in.motion isolationfoamlimited lifetime; 365-night trial
Leesa Original Hybrid Mattress$$$hybrid11 in.multi-position sleepersmemory foam, pocketed coils10 years; 100-night trial
Avocado Green Mattress$$$hybrid13 in. (with optional pillow top)sleepers who prioritize organic materialslatex, wool, cotton, pocketed support coils25 years; one year trial
Nolah Natural 11″ Mattress$$$latex hybrid11 in.sleepers looking for temperature-regulating materialsTalalay latex, support coilslifetime; 120-night trial
Nolah Evolution 15″ Mattress$$$hybrid15 sleepersfoam, support coilslifetime; 120-night trial
Birch Luxe Natural Mattress$$$hybrid11.5 in.all sleeping positionscashmere, wool, latex, pocketed coils25 years; 100-night trial

Many people prefer medium-firm mattresses because they offer a combination of comfort and support. But this firmness can have other benefits, too.

Some evidence suggests that medium-firm mattresses can improve sleep comfort and quality.

Other research suggests self-adjusted, medium-firm mattresses may help improve comfort and the quality of your sleep if you live with back pain.

Medium-firm mattresses can also be a good choice if your preferred sleep position varies. They’ll give you the support and cushion you need as you move from your side to your back to your belly.

Medium-firm mattresses work well for people with low to moderate body weights. They’re also a good compromise if you share your bed with someone who prefers a firmer sleeping surface than you do (or vice versa).

If you’re searching for a medium-firm option, it helps to keep a few things in mind:

  • Mattress ratings: Mattress ratings will vary from brand to brand, but they can offer a good starting point. Opt for a mattress in the range of 5 to 7 on the scale.
  • Mattress type and materials: You can find medium-firm mattresses in hybrid, memory foam, or innerspring options. Innerspring mattresses use coils for support, while hybrid mattresses feature a mix of coils and foam. There are a few types of foam mattresses, including memory and latex.
  • Material certifications: Make a point of shopping for mattresses with materials that have third-party certifications. That way, you’ll know the company has met stringent quality standards for safety.
  • Performance: Beyond firmness level, consider the importance of features like motion isolation, temperature regulation, edge support, and off-gassing. If you share your bed with a partner or tend to sleep hot, you’ll want to find a medium-firm option that suits your needs.
  • In-home trials and warranties: Whether you’re shopping in store or online, opt for a mattress with a generous in-home trial and easy returns or exchanges. Also, look for a brand that offers a warranty in case you run into issues.

If upgrading your mattress isn’t an option at the moment, you still have other ways to make your bed more comfortable. Think new pillows, sheets, and comforters, a supportive mattress topper, or even bedroom ambiance.

Pillows and bedding

The right pillow can make a world of difference in the quality of your sleep. If you regularly wake up with pain in your neck and upper back, try swapping your pillow for one designed to accommodate your preferred sleep position.

If you tend to overheat during the night, consider a cooling pillowcase and comforter to stay comfortable.

Scratchy sheets or heavy comforters that keep you overly warm can also stand between you and a good night’s sleep. Consider new sheets in classic cotton, silky-soft bamboo, breathable linen, or luxurious silk — they might be worth the upgrade.

It can also help to switch your comforter to match the season instead of using the same one year-round. You may sleep better with a lightweight summer option in the warmer months and a sturdier one to stay warm and toasty when it’s cooler.

Mattress toppers

A mattress topper can be a smart and economical way to instantly refresh your bed. Depending on what you buy, you can:

  • add softness or support
  • make your bed cooler or more contouring
  • accommodate your preferred sleeping position
  • top your bed with different materials like memory foam and latex

Bedroom ambiance

It’s easy to fixate on the bed itself if you have trouble sleeping, but don’t forget to consider your sleep environment as a whole. A study from 2012 found that room temperature is one of the most important factors for high quality sleep.

Try setting the thermostat to roughly 65°F and using bed linens that will keep you warm in cooler months and cool in warmer months.

You can also make your room more snooze-friendly by:

  • blocking exterior lighting with room-darkening curtains or shades
  • replacing bright bulbs with dimmer lights
  • making your bedroom a device-free sanctuary

Finally, you might even consider painting your bedroom walls. Pale shades of blue, green, and even yellow can help calm and relax you. Opt for a matte finish to keep light from reflecting, which may be too stimulating when trying to wind down for sleep.

Get more tips to create the bedroom of your dreams.

While mattress companies have their own firmness scales, all mattresses have a firmness rating between 1 and 10, with 1 being the softest and 10 the firmest. Medium-firm mattresses usually fall somewhere between 5 and 7 on the scale.

Remember, these scales aren’t universal, so expect a little deviation in feel among different brands, even when mattresses have the same rating.

How do medium-firm mattresses compare with soft and firm mattresses?

Medium-firm mattresses are designed to have a softer, more cushiony feel than firm mattresses, which are usually around an 8 on the firmness scale. Soft mattresses, typically between 2 and 3 on the scale, tend to compress faster and more easily than medium-firm mattresses when you lie down. You’ll notice more of a “sinking in” sensation, too.

Are medium-firm mattresses good or bad for back pain?

Research from 2015 suggests that self-adjusted, medium-firm mattresses can help improve sleep quality in people with back pain.

Who are medium-firm mattresses best for?

Medium-firm mattresses can accommodate a wide range of sleepers. They’re supportive and cushioning enough for most sleeping positions, particularly for people who weigh between 130 and 230 pounds. People under 130 pounds generally tend to find softer mattresses more comfortable.

Sleepers with more body weight may want to consider mattresses specifically designed for long-term comfort and quality to get better rest.

They can also be a good choice if you need to compromise with a partner who has a different opinion of comfort. And if you’re dealing with back pain, a medium-firm mattress may help.

Does ‘medium-firm’ mean the same thing to everyone?

No. Remember, firmness refers to how a mattress feels when you lie down on it. Things like body weight and preferred sleeping position will affect how a mattress feels to you, and it could be quite different from what someone else is feeling, even if they’re right next to you!

Medium-firm mattresses are a popular choice for a reason. Designed to provide plenty of support and a comforting feel, they work well for people with low to moderate body weight, those who switch positions during the night, or people who share their bed with a partner.

Jessica Timmons has been working as a freelance writer since 2007, covering everything from pregnancy and parenting to cannabis, chiropractic, standup paddling, fitness, martial arts, home decor, and much more. Her work has appeared in mindbodygreen, Pregnancy & Newborn, Modern Parents Messy Kids, and Coffee + Crumbs. See what she’s up to now at