Hybrid mattresses are popular among the choices available in the bedding industry these days. As the name suggests, these are made by designing hybrids of other well-known types of mattresses. This maximizes the overall sleeping benefits for the user while cutting down on their negatives as much as possible.
After all, you require about a good seven to nine hours of sleep each day as per the studies of National Sleep Foundation. And a mattress with good build ensures the time you spent sleeping isn’t troublesome.
In addition to the Hybrid make, memory foam is something that’s widely available in the market when it comes to the mattress options. But what actually makes hybrid mattress what it claims to be, why you have to consider going for it and how is it different from the memory foam mattress – if these are the questions you have in your mind, keep reading along.
Because we are going to talk about everything there is that you have to know about hybrid mattresses – right from their pros and cons, to the durability and the amount you can pay to buy one.
What is a hybrid mattress?
Once again, like the word ‘Hybrid’ suggests, these mattresses are made from a combination of two things. Usually, these mattresses refer to the ones made with foam and innerspring, which is a blend of both traditional and much modern mattresses.
Hybrid mattresses’ core generally comprises of inner springs that are pocketed for the foundation, while the upper layer is more of a comfort layer, and is made with memory foam. This could be about 1.5 inches deep, or maybe even more. Some hybrid mattress might use latex foams instead of memory foam for the comfort layers.
One must also make a note that ‘hybrid’ mattress is used more like a marketing term these days. But for a mattress to be genuinely a hybrid one, there must be a combination of both coil support, and memory/latex foam as core and comfort layers respectively. If there’s the only usage of memory and latex foam, without the innerspring, it cannot be perceived as a real hybrid, even though it is a combination of two different materials.
What are the components of a hybrid mattress bed?
An average hybrid mattress bed comprises of these layers:
- A base layer: This layer is usually made of foam and is placed beneath the core layer to provide extra support, stability, and padding to the mattress. The layer is about 1 inch in height and is likely to be made of polyurethane.
- A coil support core: A layer of about 6 to 7 inches tall, which makes up for the bulk of the mattress’s height. As mentioned above, this core layer is usually made of pocketed coil springs to provide better comfort and minimize the motion transfer.
- A comfort layer: Now, this layer is made of either memory or latex foam, or maybe even both. This decision, along with the ratio and height of the layer is made by the manufacturer of the mattress. But ideally, the comfort layer should be about 3 to 4 inches. It may also have an additional gel content or copper elements to increase breathability and cooling aspect of the mattress.
- An optional pillow-top or Euro-top layer: Although not a compulsory layer, some manufacturers like to have an additional layer sewn with a gap between the space for the pillow and the comfort layer. This makes it look as if there’s a mattress latched onto the pillow. They can be about 1 to 2 inches in height and are usually made from any of the materials like memory foam, latex foam, cotton, wool, polyfoam, or fiberfill.
In addition to the usual layers that make for the height of the mattress and particular layers that stand individually, the density and ILD can be two other things that people should make a note of while shopping for a mattress. Additionally, the coil count, as well as the gauge of the core, can help you assess if you’re making a right choice.
Density: It is simply calculated as a measure of the amount of compression that a mattress can hold while still supporting the sleeper the way it should. The density of a mattress is measured in pounds per cubic foot. Exceptional contouring and motion isolation can be provided by density foam of higher grade but tends to take a while to recover its shape. Using a lower quality foam gives you quick shape recovery, however, has lesser motion isolation and contouring. Whereas a medium quality foam is somewhere amidst the both.
These density levels vary from foam to foam. While the memory foam provides a density of around 2.5 to 3.9 pounds per each cubic foot on a lower end, and up to 5.5 for a higher grade foam, Poly foam’s density ranges anything between 1.9 to 2.5 pounds per cubic foot, based on the quality.
ILD: ILD means Indentation Load Deflection. This is used to measure the mattress’ firmness. The more the ILD count, the firmer the bed, which means you will experience minor contouring. And similar to density levels, even the ILD count depends on the kind of foam. On the ILD scale, a memory foam layer scores anywhere between 8 to 20, while the latex is between 15 and 40. If you’re an overweight sleeper or a stomach sleeper, then a mattress with higher ILD score can be ideal for you, as it gives the least contouring. On the other hand, lower ILD score mattresses are best for the side sleepers and users with lighter weight.
Coil Count: Unlike the density and ILD scores, coil count is something that helps you determine the lifespan of a mattress. The higher the coil count, the longer a mattress is durable. And if you get a mattress with a lower coil count, you might have to replace the one sooner than you expected.
Gauge: It is nothing but the measure of the thickness of the coils that are pocketed into the core of the mattress. The higher the level of the gauge, the thinner the coils of your mattress are. The gauge of the core can range anything between 12 to 18 on thicker and thinner ends respectively.
How is the sleeping experience on a hybrid mattress?
A good hybrid mattress can provide the sleeper with contouring like that of a memory foam bed, but only a degree lesser. Unlike the memory foams which gives you a feeling of hug-the-mattress, hybrid mattresses don’t make you feel like you’re trapped inside the mattress. Perhaps, this is why a lot of people turn to the hybrid mattress as opposed to its counterpart.
The mattress gives you an ideal amount of contouring, while the pocketed coils don’t let the heat retain within. These pocketed coils also give you a bouncier feeling and at the same time, provides you with an excellent isolation of the motion. This doesn’t bother you even when the people you share with the bed shift their positions or get out of the bed.
Different hybrid mattresses feel different, owing to the difference in the ratio levels of latex and memory foam layers. But fortunately, you can choose what works best for you by trying them out in the stores.
Pros & Cons of Hybrid Mattress
The features and experience of sleeping on a hybrid mattress might be enticing. But let me tell you, not everything is perfect. And like other mattresses, even a hybrid bed comes with its own set of pros and cons.
|Gives better contouring than innerspring and latex mattresses||Expensive|
|Cooler sleeping surface||Off-gassing order in initially|
|Bouncy||Shorter life span if there’s more polyfoam|
|Better motion isolation||Heavy and difficult to move|
|Availability of various firmness levels|
Now, let’s talk about them in detail.
Pros of a Hybrid Mattress
When compared to the mattresses made of innerspring and latex, they have remarkable contouring. This enables a better alignment of the spine, especially if you’re a side sleeper. And at the same time, it retains the goodness of these mattresses, like bounciness.
Cooler sleeping surface
All thanks to the pocketed coils in the core, which comes with enhanced cooling aspects, you don’t feel hot while sleeping on the hybrid mattress. These coils ensure breathability and air-circulation throughout.
As I mentioned earlier, the mattress offers perfect bounce, and with least noise and motion transfer issues. This proves the mattress ideal for people sharing the bed, especially couples.
Better motion isolation
The usage of more than one foam layer gives the mattress better isolation of motion than many other variants available in the market. So, don’t worry about being disturbed by your partner or your pet while you’re taking that nap or having a good night’s sleep after a tiresome day.
Availability of various firmness levels
Owing to the usage of both latex and memory foams, that too in different aspects of ratio, you get to have a multitude of firmness levels to choose from when it comes to hybrid mattresses. Since various manufacturers make different decisions about the ratio and height of the layers, you can decide what works for you, after doing a mattress test at the store.
Cons of a hybrid mattress
An expensive option
Compared to the other contenders in the bedding industry, hybrid mattresses can be on the expensive side. But again, this is because the mattresses tend to offer the best of both innerspring and memory foam mattresses. And this goodness comes at a price.
Initial off-gassing odor
You might experience an off-gas odor when you unwrap a hybrid mattress because of the whole manufacturing process and the foam layers involved. But the good thing is that not all hybrid mattresses give off this smell and that it doesn’t last. Also, it has nothing to do with affecting your health, as its totally harmless. And the odor fades away within a few hours or to the most, a few days.
Shorter lifespan if there’s more poly foam
If your mattress happens to have an unideal ratio of poly and latex foam, especially more poly foam, then it might not last as long. So, make sure to be informed about the ratio and the foam layers before you choose your mattress.
Heavier and difficult to move
Due to a multitude of components, the hybrid mattress is much heavier than a simple memory foam mattress and can be difficult to move around. But on the other hand, this heaviness of the mattress can make up for its durability, and who wouldn’t like that?
How much should you spend on a hybrid mattress?
A queen-sized hybrid mattress of high quality can cost you around $1000 on an average. This price is about $400 more than what you would have to shell out for an innerspring mattress and about $100 higher than a bed made out of memory foam. On the other hand, high-end hybrid mattress models can even be priced up to $4000.
What is the durability of a hybrid mattress?
A good hybrid bed can last up to ten years or more, but the average lifespan is around six years. And this average is much better than what you can find for most of the innerspring beds.
The lifespan of the mattress also depends on the amount of poly foam and the thickness of the coils used in the core layer. If there’s more poly foam in the mattress, then it might not last that long.
To know better, it’s recommended to review the warranty periods of various hybrid mattresses available in the market. These warranty clauses may range between anything from premature sagging of the coils to excursiveness of indentation and more. Just go through them carefully and see what’s covered by the manufacturer and what is not.
What kind of sleepers do hybrid mattresses suit the most?
Since hybrid mattresses offer the best from all the other kinds of mattresses available in the market, minimizing their negativities, it becomes ideal for most kinds of sleepers. The excellent motion isolation, lesser contouring, and the buoyancy make it ideal for people sharing the bed, especially couples.
For the sleepers who are on the heavier side, sleep on their stomach or prefer less contouring, a hybrid mattress is a right choice.
However, if you’re someone who is into plushness of the mattresses and wants more of an embracing feel, then you should probably stay away from the hybrid mattress.
How is a hybrid mattress different from a memory foam mattress?
Memory foam mattresses are top contenders for hybrid mattresses in the market. They are the ones that are widely opted as an alternative to the hybrid bed. How is a hybrid mattress different from a memory foam one? What are the fundamental differences and how can you differentiate one from the other?
Memory foam mattress: Unlike the hybrid mattress, a memory foam mattress combines a kind of viscoelastic foam along with a few other foam layers. The base material, i.e., memory foam, was originally intended to make seats in the airplanes. It then moved to the hospitals to provide support to the patients with spinal injuries and finally made its way to the bedding industry.
How do you differentiate between a hybrid mattress and a memory foam mattress?
The main difference between a hybrid and memory foam mattress is its build. The hybrid mattress is a blend of innerspring along with layers of latex and/or memory foam, while the other uses memory foam as a base layer while combining it with other layers for support, cooling, and other aspects.
The hybrid mattresses make use of the layers in such a way that the user gets to experience the best of them while cutting down on the disadvantages as much as possible, while the memory foam mattress aims at giving its user a plush and enveloped sleeping experience.
The differences compared to a memory foam mattress
Memory foam mattress is different from the hybrid mattress in a lot of ways. For starters, they are usually a lot more durable and come with extremely long warranty periods than that of the hybrid mattresses.
The mattresses also come with excellent spinal support, which makes it ideal for the users with problems in the backbone. Further, they are a lot less bouncy and are extremely easy to clean. You can just remove the dust with a simple wipe down as opposed to that of a hybrid bed, which is a hit among many of the users. In addition to this, most of the memory foam mattresses are hypoallergenic and keeps the sleepers away from mites, dust and other kinds of airborne allergens.
However, many users stay away from the memory foam due to its sinkage. Unlike the hybrid bed, memory foam mattresses give the sleeper an ‘embracing’ feel. You feel as if the mattress is enveloping you and that you’re trapped inside it. A hybrid mattress, on the other hand, is bouncier and keeps you on the surface. So, if you’re someone who likes to move a lot and like a jumpy feel, you might be disappointed with the memory foam.
These mattresses are also said to retain a lot of heat, so you might feel a little hot when you lay down. That’s why a lot of mattresses come with an additional cooling layer to negate this.
Additionally, memory foam mattress might also be prone to some initial off-gassing, which is not a difference, but a similarity to that of a hybrid mattress. But it might take a little longer than the hybrid bed to get rid of this odor.
How do you know if a hybrid mattress is the right one for you, as opposed to the memory foam mattress?
Even after reading about the hybrid mattress in detail, you might still be wondering as to which mattress could be the right one for you.
A hybrid mattress sure does offer a lot of benefits, but it is expensive on the other hand. And then there’s memory foam, a popular alternative, which could give you an almost equal amount of advantages, though at a much lower price. What do you do then? How to know if a hybrid mattress is a right choice for you? Be it your first buy, or an upgrade. Go through these factors, and you should be able to come to a conclusion.
If you are on the heavier side and looking for something comfortable, then you should give hybrid mattresses a try. They provide excellent contouring and less sinkage, which makes it an ideal choice.
Similarly, a stomach sleeper may have a good sleeping experience with these mattresses as opposed to innerspring or memory foam mattresses.
Hybrid also works for those who are looking for breathability and good air circulation during their sleep, as the pocketed springs in the inner layer provide excellent cooling compared to its counterparts.
Finally, hybrid mattresses come with a variety of choices, owing to manufacturer decisions about ratios and layers of memory and latex foams involved. This means every kind of sleeper out there has something to look out for. All you have to do is find a store where you can test out the mattresses, and pick the one that offers you best firmness, comfort, contouring and motion transfer.
Foam Mattress Recommendations
In case, you’re wondering if we have any recommendations, here are a few reviews you should check out:
Tuft & Needle vs. Purple [Tuft & Needle is foam; Purple is two kinds of foam and a polyelastic layer]
Ghostbed vs. Purple [Ghostbed is foam- latex and memory; Purple is two kinds of foam and a polyelastic layer]
Leesa vs. Casper [Leesa is foam; Casper is Hybrid foam without springs]
Nectar vs. Leesa [Nectar has multiple layers of memory foam; Leesa is foam]
Tuft& Needle vs. Leesa [Tuft & Needle is foam; Leesa is foam]
FAQ checklist you need to go through before mattress shopping
Now that you’ve been well informed about hybrid mattresses and everything they have to offer, you’re ready to get one of your own. But before you go, just go through this one last checklist you would want to know about. This will clear off any lingering thoughts in your head about getting the mattress that best suits your needs. So, here we go.
- How long do I expect this bed to last?
- What are the warranty terms?
- What is the trial period offered by the company?
- What is the return policy?
- Can this mattress support me, given my weight and sleeping position preferences?
- What is the density of the mattress?
- What is the ILD offered by the mattress?
- What are the layers involved?
- What is the ratio of the memory foam to the latex foam?
- What grade is the poly foam used in the mattress?
- What are the cooling elements involved, if any?
If you’ve gotten answers to these questions in addition to your preferences, you’re free to make a final decision about the mattress that works for you the best. Happy shopping!