Sleep is essential for a healthy and happy pregnancy. Unfortunately, during pregnancy your body goes through a lot of changes that can make getting quality sleep difficult.
Heartburn, waking up to pee 10+ times a night, sleep apnea, pregnancy-induced insomnia, restless leg syndrome, leg cramps, and a general aching sensation are just a few reasons that pregnant women struggle to sleep at night. Poor sleep during pregnancy can lead to maternal complications like hypertension and gestational diabetes, so it’s important to make quality sleep a priority.
Sleeping on a sub-par mattress can make all these problems seem so much worse. The best mattress for pregnancy (and after) is one that relieves pressure points and will adapt to your changing needs during pregnancy (and beyond).
Top 5 Mattresses for Pregnancy Reviews of 2021
1. Best Overall: Leesa Mattress
The Leesa mattress is a multi-layer foam mattress that uses premium foams for cooling, contouring, and pressure relieving support. Like many online mattress companies, they offer free shipping and returns. Financing options and in-home delivery/setup are also available. Customers love that these mattresses are made in the USA and the company even has a referral program!
The mattress itself has three layers: 1) Comfort 2-inch LSA200™ Foam, 2) Recovery 2-inch memory foam, and 3) Support 6-inch dense core foam. The Leesa supports all body types and sleeping positions, with an enhanced cooling top layer for those who sleep hot (like pregnant ladies, am I right?). Another positive of this mattress is minimal motion transfer, meaning couples won’t wake each other up at night.
If you want a mattress that makes you feel like you’re floating on air but is supportive for people with back pain, this is a good pick. You won’t get that dead arm feeling you get when you sleep on your side, and if you’re pregnant you know you’re going to have to sleep on your side eventually whether you like it or not. Prices start from $595 for a Twin and $1195 for a Cal King. The company’s unique microcell structure ensures great airflow, bounce, and neutral firmness.
Pros: 100-night risk free trial, free memory foam pillow, certified B corporation, company donates 1 mattress for every 10 sold
Cons: average edge support
2. Top Selling: Layla Sleep Mattress
Best For: Pregnant women who need more support for now but prefer a softer mattress.
The Layla Sleep mattress is a uniquely versatile mattress that can literally CHANGE with you as you evolve from pregnancy to motherhood. What makes this mattress so different is that it has two sides: one softer and one more firm. This way, you get to decide just how much support you need, and you can change your mind later without having to get a whole new mattress!
With this mattress you know you’re getting the coolest, cleanest, most comfortable sleep you can imagine. The company uses memory foam infused with copper, because of it’s cooling and anti-microbial properties. The materials used in this mattress are CertiPUR-US Certified, so you know that they are safe for pregnancy. Prices range from $599 for a twin to $1099 for a Cal King.
Customers note that this mattress is good at isolating movement, so it’s good for couples who don’t want to disturb each other’s sleep at night. The edge support is best on the firm side, and the mattress bounces back quickly after pressure is removed. This is a bed-in-a-box type mattress, so while they offer free shipping and returns the company suggests trying the mattress for at least two weeks to break it in.
Pros: 120-night trial period, free pillow, lifetime warranty, soft cover with geometric gray pattern
Cons: not for heavier individuals (250+ pounds), if you want a truly firm bed, this probably won’t be firm enough
3. Lowest Priced: Tuft & Needle
Best for: A universally comfortable mattress that’s safe, cool, supportive, and great for couples.
Tuft & Needle is a well-known bed in a box company. Their mattresses are made with T&N adaptive foam which uses gel and graphite for optimum temperature regulation. These mattresses sleep cooler with better pressure relieving support than regular memory foam. They are CertiPUR-US and OEKO-TEK 100 certified, so you know the materials in these mattresses are safe for pregnancy.
Perfect for all sleeping positions, T&N mattresses are both bouncy and supportive. They may fit into a small box and ship quickly, but they’re made with advanced materials that don’t give you that ‘stuck’ feeling that you get with latex and memory foam mattresses. It’s an all-around comfortable mattress that bounces back well and doesn’t leave an impression like most memory foam.
When you’re carrying extra weight and need to get up several times a night, you don’t want to sink in too much or sleep hot. This mattress is great if you’re sore and need pressure relief. It also has great localized bounce meaning that your partner won’t feel you getting in and out of bed all night. The mattress itself is 10 inches thick with two layers, the second layer being a denser foam for support. Prices range from $350 for a twin to $750 for a California King.
Pros: affordable, 10-year limited warranty, no risk full refund 100-night sleep trial, 95%+ customer satisfaction, great customer service
Cons: takes up to 72 hours for mattress to expand and off-gassing odor to dissipate, not ideal for heavier individuals (over 250 pounds)
4. Luxury Buy: DreamCloud Hybrid
Best for: A safe, comfortable pillow-top mattress that’s great for pregnant women who need to relieve back or leg pressure.
DreamCloud urges potential customers to, “bring luxury inside your bedroom” with their luxury hybrid mattress. They stand out because of their 365-night trial and lifetime warranty. They also offer free shipping and returns, with financing options available to those who need it. The company uses the best materials, including latex and memory foam, to create a mattress with superior softness and bounce.
This mattress is 15 inches thick and is comprised of eight different layers of premium materials, each serving their own unique purpose. From a tufted cashmere and polyester Euro top cover for maximum breathability and softness to patented coil technology and a foam system designed to relieve pressure, this mattress is scientifically optimized to enhance sleep in all positions.
Prices range from $1099 for a twin XL to $1599 for a Cal King. One of the things that customers love about this mattress is that the flexible foam is CertiPUR-US Certified, meaning that all the materials used are safe and non-toxic. Less than 1% of mattresses on the market have this certification. Pregnant women should always consider the safety of materials before buying a mattress, but this is something that we can easily forget or assume that all mattresses are safe.
Pros: stays supportive and soft, temperature dispersing so sleeps cool, great edge support, durable and luxury materials (latex and cashmere)
Cons: may off-gas a little, but smell dissipates after about a day
5. Hotel Quality: Loom & Leaf
Best for: Moms-to-be who want a supportive mattress to use with an adjustable base.
Loom & Leaf’s handcrafted luxury mattress sells for thousands less than comparable mattresses, and even comes with a 120-day home trial. With this company you also get free delivery, setup, and mattress removal. L&L believes that luxury doesn’t come in a box, nor should it cost a fortune. Their mattresses are made in the USA and Canada, with the highest standards for quality and safety.
Now, let’s talk about the mattress. This mattress is 12 inches thick with four layers: 1) a quilted, organic cotton covering that’s breathable and flame retardant, 2) a cool and supportive layer of proprietary Spinal Zone Gel, 3) five pounds of eco-friendly premium foam, and lastly, 4) support foam with breathable airflow channels. It’s designed to pair with an adjustable base that adapts to your needs.
These four layers work together to comfort, cool, and support. Prices range from $749 for a twin to $1699 for a Cal King mattress. This mattress is ideal for couples and pregnant women because it offers excellent edge support. Cooling technology ensures that this mattress doesn’t sleep hot, another factor that can impact sleep during pregnancy. L&L offers this mattress in either relaxed firm or firm to ensure that customers get the support and comfort they need.
Pros: 15-year warranty, friendly customer service, maintains quality and firmness over time, no off-gassing ( no funny smells)
Cons: not ideal if you prefer a softer mattress with bounce, some customers find it still sleeps hot, foam not the best option for heavier individuals (over 250 pounds)
How to Choose the Best Mattress for Pregnancy
According to the 1998 Women and Sleep poll conducted by the National Sleep Foundation, “78% of women report more disturbed sleep during pregnancy than at other times. Many women also report feeling extremely fatigued during pregnancy, especially during the first and third trimesters.” If pregnancy changes your sleep so much, shouldn’t changing your mattress just make sense?
The last thing you want to do is spend nine months of pregnancy sleeping on an uncomfortable mattress. You might be thinking, “But who can afford to buy a new mattress to use when they’re pregnant?” The good news is that there are affordable options that are supportive and comfortable during pregnancy for you (and a partner). Adaptive ones will stay comfortable for years post-pregnancy.
Types of Mattresses
As your baby grows, your center of gravity shifts which can put pressure on your back. If your bed is not supportive, your back may be in pain 24/7, which can be very draining during pregnancy ̶ especially if you’re still working. Finding a mattress that’s comfortable yet supportive is key. Your mattress should help you maintain proper alignment even if you’re carrying more weight than usual.
Some of the best types of mattresses for pregnancy are:
- Hybrid: Hybrid mattresses often consist of layers of different materials. They could include coils, gel memory foam, and memory foam combined to get the best of support, comfort, and coolness all in one.
- Encased Coil: Encased coil mattresses are nice because they’re more comfortable, supportive, and isolate movement better than traditional innerspring mattresses.
- Gel Memory Foam: Gel memory foam mattresses are better than regular memory foam during pregnancy because they sleep much cooler and the materials are more durable.
- Pillow Top: Pillow top mattresses are nice because they offer an additional comfort layer without compromising support.
- Latex: Latex is often used on its own or as a layer in hybrid mattress design because it’s comfortable, supportive, quiet, and durable.
Some mattress types you may want to avoid include:
- Innerspring: Regular innerspring mattresses are popular, but they’re not ideal during pregnancy and probably won’t provide the support or comfort you need. They don’t isolate movement well and are better for back and stomach sleepers.
- Memory foam: Memory foam mattresses are typically not the best for pregnancy because they may not support the extra weight you’re carrying, although they can be firm. Regular memory foam also tends to sleep hot and give you that ‘I sunk in and can’t get up’ feeling.
Personal preference plays a big role in the type of mattress you will buy. The thing is, if you love soft memory foam it’s important to be aware that you may not love it so much a few months from now. Knowing that there are hybrids that use memory foam and other layers for support and breathability ensures that you get the best sleep possible.
What To Look for in a Mattress When You’re Pregnant?
The type of mattress is just the beginning when it comes to choosing the best mattress for pregnancy. You also must look at the smaller details if you want to purchase a mattress that will help you sleep, not keep you up all night. A few important things to consider before buying a mattress are:
Edge support: A mattress with good edge support is a must when you’re pregnant. Getting in and out of bed several times a night (to pee or get a snack) can be tiring. Good edge support will make it easier on your body. Better edge support also means you and your partner have more space to sleep on.
Temperature: Many women report sleeping warm during pregnancy or waking up during the night in a sweat. You want to make sure that the materials in your mattress will not make you extra hot at night. Since you tend to sink into memory foam those mattresses are usually a little hotter.
Support: A supportive mattress is a must during pregnancy, otherwise you’ll find yourself waking up sore and unrested. Since you’ll be laying on your side to sleep for most of your pregnancy, it’s a good idea to find a mattress that supports proper hip, spine, and neck alignment.
Firm or Soft Mattress: Remember to find a balance. You want a mattress that’s supportive but not too firm, something that will be comfortable during a time in your life that can involve a lot of discomfort. Personal preference comes into play here a lot.
Smell: You’re probably thinking, what does smell have to do with buying a mattress? As you already know, your sense of smell is sensitive during pregnancy. Some mattresses, like memory foam, have an off-gassing smell when they come out of the packaging which could be off-putting. The smell usually dissipates after a while but it’s something to keep in mind.
Movement Isolation: Another thing you want to consider when buying a mattress to use when you’re pregnant is movement isolation. This is so that: 1) Your partner doesn’t feel you getting up and/or tossing and turning all night, and 2) You aren’t woken up by your partner shifting or getting in and out of bed. Memory foam and hybrid mattresses tend to have superior movement isolation.
Sleep trial and Warranty: Buying a mattress can be a tricky process. When you’re pregnant it can be hard to anticipate what you’ll need in the later trimesters, for example. If you have a partner, you must consider their preferences too. A sleep trial and good warranty ensure that if the mattress you choose is not the right one for you, you aren’t stuck with it.
Shipping and Returns: It’s so easy to buy mattresses online these days, some of them even come compacted in a relatively little box! Most online mattress stores offer free shipping and returns, but it’s important to make sure before you commit. Make it a point to read the fine print on the company’s return policy in case you have any issues and need to send it back.
Hypoallergenic: Whether you have allergies or not, it’s usually a good idea to buy a mattress that’s hypoallergenic. Some mattresses are naturally hypoallergenic due to the materials that are used. These mattresses will naturally be anti-microbial and resistant to allergens like dust-mites, helping you breathe and sleep better. Latex and memory foam mattresses are usually hypoallergenic.
Durable: Let’s face it, unless you were in the market for a new mattress anyway, not everyone can afford to update their mattress just because they’re pregnant. If you do, you’re probably going to keep using it after the baby is born. A mattress made with durable materials should last throughout your pregnancy and adapt to the changes your body goes through instead of wearing out fast.
Pregnancy, Allergens, and Asthma
Allergies and respiratory problems are common these days. We spend a lot of time indoors surrounded by chemicals and inevitably, things like allergens and dust-mites gather if we don’t clean carefully and often. A study in the Journal of Allergy and Clinical Immunology showed that creating a low allergen environment is possible (and helpful) during pregnancy and the first year of life.
Reducing exposure to allergens in a baby’s early life may help prevent the development of allergies and asthma, another reason why a hypoallergenic mattress is a good choice. Hypoallergenic mattresses are easy to come by now and the materials used will naturally keep your mattress drier, therefore creating an environment that discourages allergens from hanging out.
If you do have asthma or allergies, a hypoallergenic mattress is a must if you don’t want to suffer with those symptoms more than you need to during your pregnancy. In addition, sleeping on a hypoallergenic pillow is equally as important for a new mom to be.
Other Solutions for Disrupted Sleep During Pregnancy
These are just some of the main things that you want to consider when buying a mattress to use during pregnancy. If your mattress arrives and it isn’t exactly what you expected, keep in mind that it takes time to break in a mattress. In the meantime, many companies offer mattress toppers to increase comfort if you’re finding the bed too firm. Some companies will even send you one for free!
A study in the Journal of Obstetrics and Gynaecology found that 87% of pregnant participants reported back-ache and/or back-ache related insomnia. The women recorded lower scores for back pain when they used a wedge-shaped pillow to support their stomachs as opposed to a regular hospital pillow. They also reported better sleep, although their sleep scores didn’t show a difference.
If you find you aren’t quite comfortable on your new mattress, because it hasn’t broken in yet or you’re still experiencing pain, don’t give up. Many pregnant women sleep with a pillow in between their knees to support with their hips. Some sleep with a pillow behind their back to help sleep comfortably on their side, or under their belly for support. You can use multiple pillows or even get a big ‘U’ shaped one!
The Bottom Line
Sleeping on an old, saggy mattress when you’re pregnant can be a nightmare. It’s hard to sleep when you’re pregnant to begin with, considering the nausea, back pain, bladder control problems, and other pregnancy-related things. Not to mention when the baby decides to stay awake all night doing gymnastics or martial arts. If this sounds familiar, investing in a new mattress is probably a good idea.
The good news is, you don’t need to get a ‘special’ pregnancy mattress (unless you want to)! There are a lot of great standard mattresses out there that can support you during and after your pregnancy, even on a budget. Knowing what materials are the most supportive, comfortable, and durable will help make choosing your new mattress a breeze!