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The 8 Best Pillow Top Mattresses That Prioritize Comfort

They add extra cushioning for a luxurious sleep experience.
By Jillian Mueller
December 10, 2020
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You don’t need to go to a luxury hotel to drift off to sleep in a plush, decadent bed. Pillow top mattresses feature a layer of soft padding designed to cradle your curves, take stress off your joints, and cushion your spine so that you can get the support you need for a restful night’s sleep. 

While most sleepers can benefit from the cozy comfort of a pillow top mattress, it’s important to choose the right one for you. The amount of mattress brands out there can make the process seem daunting, so the team at Mattress Advisor used their expert testing to round up 8 excellent picks to help streamline your search.

These are the 8 best pillow top mattresses to buy online:

What is a pillow top mattress?

A pillow top mattress can be made out of a variety of materials, but is defined by its ultra-cushioning top layer. The soft surface of pillow top beds provides superior pressure relief and keeps your spine in its natural alignment by contouring around the hips, shoulders, knees, and other high-stress areas. The pillow top layer allows these tender points to gently sink into the bed, reducing strain.

The benefits of a pillow top mattress

Plush feel

Pillow top beds are known for their incredibly plush comfort level. They provide a cushioning surface that makes you feel like you’re floating on a cloud as you sleep. 

Support

The plush layer of a pillow top mattress supports proper spine alignment by helping to distribute your weight evenly along the length of the bed. This prevents certain areas of your body from bearing most of the stress. 

Pain relief

The added comfort layer on a pillow top mattress cradles your pressure points by allowing them to gently sink into the mattress, reducing your chances of waking up with morning aches and pains. It’s a great choice for sleepers with orthopedic issues who need a bed with extra padding.

Motion isolation

If you sleep with a pet or partner, you will appreciate the motion isolation a pillow top mattress provides. The top layer absorbs movement so you won’t be disturbed by your companion’s tossing and turning throughout the night. 

Types of pillow top mattresses

Innerspring

An innerspring mattress, like the Saatva, is made with a core of spring coils that responds to your movements, gives the bed a bouncy feel, and provides firm support. They’re the most breathable mattresses thanks to the ample space between coils, which allows for more airflow. Adding a pillow top comfort layer to an innerspring bed helps to soften up the feel of a firm mattress without compromising the support or cooling features that this type of bed offers. 

Hybrid

A hybrid mattress, like the DreamCloud Premier, combines two or more mattress materials into a single bed (most pillow top mattresses fall into this category). They tend to come with a higher price tag because of their complex construction, but hybrids are also highly durable and typically offer a nice balance of support and contouring comfort. 

Latex

A latex bed, like the Awara, has a buoyant feel to it but still offers firm support like an innerspring bed, and provides light contouring around your body similar to a memory foam mattress. Latex is motion isolating and pressure relieving, but instead of feeling like you’re sinking into the mattress, it’s like you’re floating on top of it.

Pillow top vs. euro top 

A pillow top is an extra layer of padding that’s sewn into the surface of the mattress. A euro top is essentially the same thing with one key difference: it’s sewn flush, which means it has a more polished look and feel. Euro top mattresses are considered to be “top of the line” due to their excellent edge support that helps prevent sagging. 

Choosing the best pillow top mattress

While there are many great pillow top mattresses available, some beds will be a better fit for you than others. Here are some of the most important factors to consider.

Firmness

The firmness level of your mattress is subjective—what feels soft to you may be too firm for another sleeper. Back and stomach sleepers benefit from a medium-firm to firm mattress that balances sturdy support and comfort. Stomach sleepers, especially, need firm support to keep their midsection from drooping too far into the mattress. Side sleepers, on the other hand, often require a softer mattress to provide necessary pressure relief to sensitive areas like the hips and shoulders. 

Temperature

Pillow top mattresses can be made from a variety of materials, but most end up being a hybrid construction composed of foam and innerspring coils. This type of mattress sleeps fairly cool because of the inclusion of coils, which offer greater airflow and breathability. However, if you’re a perpetually hot sleeper you may want to look for an option that actively promotes cooling. 

Price

The high-grade construction of pillow top mattresses make them a more expensive option—a queen size usually costs around $1,000 or more—but it’s important to note that these materials hold up over time, making each mattress an investment that’ll last for decades. 

The 8 best pillow top mattresses

Mattress Lifestyle Photos
Credit: Saatva

Best Luxury: Saatva

The Saatva mattress will make you feel like you’re checking into a 5-star hotel every night. The quilted euro top comfort layer provides superior contouring and excellent edge support, plus this hybrid mattress is also available in multiple levels of firmness to suit your preferences. Given that white glove delivery and setup are provided free of charge, you won’t have to lift a finger. 

  • Mattress Type: Hybrid (coils and foam)
  • Customer Rating: 4.9 out of 5
  • Firmness: Plush soft, luxury firm, firm
  • Trial Period for Returns: 180 nights

To buy: Saatva Mattress, $1,399, saatva.com (Click to see exclusive offer)

Mattress Lifestyle Photos
Credit: Helix

Best for Side Sleepers: Helix Midnight Luxe

Helix Midnight Luxe’s premium pillow top is plush enough to cradle your curves, and features four layers of dense foam with a support core composed of 1,000 individually wrapped pocket coils. It earned a near-perfect cooling score from Mattress Advisor thanks to its use of phase change fabric, which keeps heat away from the surface of the bed. What’s more, the Helix Midnight Luxe comes with a 100-night sleep trial, so you can fully test out its capabilities before committing. 

  • Mattress Type: Hybrid (coils and foam) 
  • Customer Rating: 4.7 out of 5
  • Firmness: Medium-firm
  • Trial Period for Returns: 100 nights

To buy: Helix Midnight Luxe Mattress, $1,849, helixsleep.com (Click to see exclusive offer)

Best for Back Pain: WinkBed

If you’re dealing with an aching back but crave a plush pillow top mattress, the WinkBed is for you. Two coil systems and a lumbar support layer keep the spine boosted, while the foam pillow top helps absorb extra body heat. The WinkBed responds well to movement, so sleepers who like to switch up sleeping positions will stay supported at all times.

  • Mattress Type: Hybrid (foam and coils)
  • Customer Rating: 4.5 out of 5
  • Firmness: Softer, luxury-firm, firmer, plus
  • Trial Period for Returns: 120 nights

To buy: WinkBed Mattress, $1,599, winkbeds.com (Click to see exclusive offer)

Mattress Lifestyle Photos
Credit: Bear

Best Hybrid: Bear Hybrid

The Bear Hybrid offers a unique mix of plush softness, expert cooling, and muscle recovery with its hand-quilted top layer. While most hybrid beds incorporate innerspring coils into their construction, the Bear Hybrid goes above and beyond with its layer of over 1,300 individually encased coils to provide superb responsiveness and durability. These coils are covered with a layer of gel foam that relieves pressure and keeps you cool.

  • Mattress Type: Hybrid (coils and foam)
  • Customer Rating: 4.7 out of 5
  • Firmness: Medium-firm
  • Trial Period for Returns: 100 nights

To buy: Bear Hybrid Mattress, $1,356, bearmattress.com (Click to see exclusive offer)

Mattress Lifestyle Photos
Credit: Awara

Best Latex: Awara

The Awara is a medium-firm pillow top mattress that combines layers of organic latex foam, pocket coils, and a luxe pillow topper for the perfect blend of stability and comfort. The bed’s latex foam layers provide contouring while the pocket coil layer offers zoned lumbar support to help keep your spine aligned throughout the night. 

  • Mattress Type: Hybrid (latex and coils)
  • Customer Rating: 4.8 out of 5
  • Firmness: Medium-firm
  • Trial Period for Returns: 365 nights

To buy: Awara Mattress, $1,499, awarasleep.com (Click to see exclusive offer)

Mattress Lifestyle Photos
Credit: Avocado

Best Organic: Avocado Green

Add an eco-friendly, European-style pillow top to your Avocado Green mattress for a luxuriously plush feel. This pillow top uses organic certified latex foam and provides expert pressure relief with two additional inches of thickness. The materials are nontoxic, naturally breathable, and wick away moisture to keep you cool and comfortable throughout the night. Plus, its high marks in alignment and responsiveness make this a great pick for back and combination sleepers.

  • Mattress Type: Hybrid (natural latex and coils)
  • Customer Rating: 4.7 out of 5
  • Firmness: Medium-firm
  • Trial Period for Returns: 365 nights

To buy: Avocado Green Mattress, $1,399, avocadogreenmattress.com (Click to see exclusive offer)

Mattress Lifestyle Photos
Credit: Nest

Best Innerspring: Nest Alexander Signature Hybrid

With the Alexander Signature Hybrid from Nest Bedding, you can enjoy the benefits of a pillow top bed even if you prefer the feel of a traditional innerspring mattress. It combines cushioning layers of memory foam and an ultra-responsive row of innerspring coils, providing both bounce and breathability. Plus, this bed is offered in three firmness levels—plush, medium, and luxury firm—to suit virtually any sleep position. 

  • Mattress Type: Hybrid (coils and foam)
  • Customer Rating: 4.8 out of 5
  • Firmness: Plush, medium, firm
  • Trial Period for Returns: 100 nights

To buy: Alexander Signature Hybrid Mattress, $1,499, nestbedding.com (Click to see exclusive offer)

Mattress Lifestyle Photos
Credit: Brentwood

Best Cooling: Brentwood Home Oceano

Every inch of the Brentwood Home Oceano is designed to beat the heat. Made with a combination of innerspring coils, which facilitate airflow throughout the mattress, and open cell gel memory foam that’s both breathable and heat-dissipating, this bed delivers on its promise to cool you down

  • Mattress Type: Hybrid (coils and foam)
  • Customer Rating: 4.7 out of 5
  • Firmness: Medium-soft
  • Trial Period for Returns: 365 nights

To buy: Brentwood Home Oceano Mattress, $1,499, brentwoodhome.com (Click to see exclusive offer)

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