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Best Budget "Cheap" Mattress 2021

Last Updated: October 13, 2021

Reviewed by:
Claire Roach
MSC Founder

Looking for the best cheap mattress amidst a myriad of mattresses sold throughout the UK can be a bit of a pain. Especially when you are looking for the best mattress on a budget for its value. There is a misconception that all budget-friendly mattresses use cheap materials but these mattresses sometimes offer the same high-quality materials and performances as the more expensive options.

A great example to put this into context comes from a professor from Glasgow Caledonian University, who was part of a study that found that mattresses costing the NHS £1,000 were only marginally better at preventing pressure ulcers than cheaper foam beds.

A study conducted by the Better Sleep Council reveals that consumers for the first time expect a mattress to last below 10 years and in addition they expected their new mattress to cost significantly higher than in past surveys.

There are multiple factors that play into the price of a mattress. What materials are used, the number of materials, the added features and even the business model. Mattresses in a box sold online typically offer more competitive prices as compared to their brick and mortar counterparts.

Finding great mattresses for around £200 was no easy task but we have come to what we think are some good options to take into consideration if you have a limited budget.

(Important Facts, Studies, Advice, Considerations & FAQ's In Conclusion).

BRANDMATTRESSTYPETRIAL & WARRANTYPRICE
VesganttiVesgantti Pro HybridHybrid100 Nights
10 Years
£196.99
InofiaInofia mattressHybrid100 Nights
10 Years
£145.99
SimbaComfort Foam mattressFoam Combination100 Nights
3 Years
£250
EmmaEssential mattressFoam CombinationNA
5 Years
£152.15
Happy BedsSignature Crystal mattressPocket SprungNA
5 Years
£214.99
Silentnight3 Zone Memory mattressMemory Foam60 Nights
3 Years
£189
John LewisEssentials Collection mattressPocket SprungNA
7 Years
£179
Prices are referring to the single size. Information may be subject to change, please check with the brand/manufacturer before purchasing. Generally, brands run sales that make the mattresses cheaper than displayed.

1. Vesgantti Mattress

Up to 66% OFF
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(Image credit: Vesgantti)
HIGHLIGHTSSUITABILITY
• CertiPur-US certified foam
• Reduced motion transfer
• Spring layer includes 7 pressure-point zones
• Back, side and front sleepers
• Sleepers prone to allergy
• Couples

This classic, pocket sprung mattress from Vesgantti is a medium-firm feel mattress. Standing at 26cm deep, this budget mattress is designed for all sleepers. The Vesgantti Pocket Sprung Mattress is a hybrid design, making use of a spring layer and a top breathable foam layer. The foams used are CertiPur-US certified, ensuring that they are safe for use. The Vesgantti comfort system consists of breathable foams that are non-toxic, baby-friendly and hypoallergenic.

The added benefit of this multi-layer is that it lets go of body sweat and moisture, keeping you dry as you sleep. The spring layer is made from individually wrapped springs. This layer is the support of the mattress and will support you in any sleeping position. Being individually wrapped, this layer also promotes individual response. 

The spring layer includes 7 pressure-point zones for pressure relief,as well as shock-absorption designed to absorb noise and vibrations which could make it a great mattress for couples. The springs sit all the way across your mattress, this provides edge support  that allows you to sit or sleep near or on the edge.

Apart from this, the Vesgantti Mattress comes with free delivery to mainland UK, a 100-night trial and a 10-year warranty.

(Video credit: Vesgantti)

2. Inofia Mattress

Up to £20 OFF
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(Image credit: Inofia)
HIGHLIGHTSSUITABILITY
• 3D breathable knitted top cover
• Scientifically tested spring layer against back pain
• 10-year warranty
• People enjoying a firmer feel
• Most sleeping positions
• Sleepers suffering from back pain

The Inofia mattress is designed with various sleep positions in mind. This budget-friendly 7 layered hybrid is wrapped in a 3D knitted, breathable top cover. This allows air to escape from the mattress and moves the heat away from your body.

The first few layers are foam layers designed for comfort and soft sinking support. Firstly, a high-elasticity comfort foam layer that allows for movement and shifting, providing pressure relief. The second high-density foam layer provides sturdy support, allowing for deeper sinking while keeping the pressure off your joints and bones.

Separating the springs and top foam layers is a non-woven fabric layer that provides a break in between the springs and the foams above. Surrounding the spring layers we find 2 sterile layers, top and bottom. These layers ensure a clean and contained spring layer, keeping the air flowing through without collecting dirt and dust.

Finally, the spring layer consists of individually wrapped pocket springs that are designed to aid in pressure relief while allowing for airflow. This spring layer is also scientifically tested to align your spine correctly and combat backaches or pains, thanks to the 7-zone spring system targeting pressure points. On top of this, the mattress also comes with a 100-night trial and a 10-year warranty.

3. Simba Comfort Foam Mattress

40% OFF
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40% Off On Orders Over £300 T&Cs apply.
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(Image credit: Simba)
HIGHLIGHTSSUITABILITY
• CertiPUR & Oeko-Tex 100 certified
• 100-night trial
• Hypoallergenic
• Sleepers prone to allergies
• Couples
• People who like medium firmness

The Simba Comfort Foam Mattress has a 2 layer foam design wrapped in a stylish cover. The cover is a knitted finish weighing 500g that is designed to be plush and breathable. The cover features temperature regulation properties, it is hypoallergenic and certified to Oeko-Tex 100 standard, ensuring it has been tested for harmful components.

Simbatex is Simba's very own foam that is designed with open-pores. These open-pores allow the air to flow deeper into the mattress, transferring the heat away from your body. This layer is not only breathable, but it also has body-moulding properties. This layer was specially engineered to produce a cloud-like comfort as you lay down, whilst being cradled and supported from all sides.

The base of this mattress is made out of high-definition foam that is meant to provide a solid and supportive base for the mattress. This layer also features castellated zones, which are cut-outs in the foam. There are 4 zones in this layer that are designed to support your pressure points, while gently aligning your spine correctly. These zones also aid in breathability, allowing the hot air to flow further and further away from your body.

This medium-firm mattress is designed to fit all sleeping positions. Included in your purchase is a 100-night trial, a 3-year cover and free delivery.

4. Emma Essential Mattress

emma essential cheap mattress
(Image credit: Emma)
HIGHLIGHTSSUITABILITY
• Removable and washable top cover
• Medium soft firmness
• 5-year warranty and free delivery
• Most sleeping positions
• Those needing a supportive sleeping surface
• Sleepers on a tight budget

This soft-medium firmness rated Emma Mattress is a 2 layered all-foam design, featuring both breathable and supportive foams. The foam layers are wrapped up in a dual cover, top and bottom. The top half of the cover is temperature regulating and made from 100% polyester. The polyester fibres help prevent overheating, thus keeping your sleep surface cool and refreshing. The lower half consists of the sidewalls and the base. Made from 89% polyester and 11% polypropylene, the base features a non-slip coating, which is meant to secure your mattress to your bed frame. The top cover is also machine washable at 40 degrees.

The first of the foam layers of this cheap mattress option is the top breathable foam. It is designed with an open-pore structure that is designed to actively wick moisture away, providing a sweat-free sleep experience night after night. 

The base of the mattress features supportive and durable foam which Emma calls their HRX foam. This layer provides support for the mattress while also aligning your spine correctly. It features innovative zoning which is cut-outs in the foam specially designed with 7 unique zones that target different areas of your body. This layer is made to align your spine correctly by dispersing the pressure from your body across the mattress all while supporting your hips and shoulders.

This budget option from Emma does not come with a trial period, but offers a 5-year warranty.

5. Happy Beds Signature Crystal Mattress

Latest Sale
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Happy Beds Discount Voucher Code
Latest sales on selected mattresses! | T&Cs apply.
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(Image credit: Happy Beds)
HIGHLIGHTSSUITABILITY
• Breathable air vents
• Natural fillings
• Hand-tufted to prolong its durability
• Sleepers prone to overheating
• People who want a spring core
• Couples

The Happybeds Signature Crystal Mattress is a double-sided mattress design, this means that you can, and are encouraged to, flip the mattress approximately every 6 weeks. To help with manoeuvrability, the mattress comes with handles. Made by an approved National Bed Federation member, this locally built mattress comes with a 5-year warranty.

The top of the mattress cover is made from wool enriched, hand-tufted top. The sides of the mattress include breathable air vents. This better promotes air circulation and keeps your mattress cleaner. The fabrics used are cotton with added linen woven in, which prevents moisture build-up by absorbing any moisture and provides a soft feel to the touch.

On the inside of the mattress, both above and below the spring layer, we find a natural filling. These layers include wool, cotton, silk and cashmere. These natural elements are compacted to ensure comfort.

Budget mattresses are often foam only as it is cheaper to produce but a spring layer of 3000 individually wrapped pocket springs is the core of this mattress. Each spring is wrapped in a fabric pocket and moves independently from the other springs. This means there will be no motion transfer which can make this a good mattress for couples. This support layer is also designed to relieve pressure from joints and your spine while providing all-around support.

6. Silentnight 3 Zone Memory Mattress

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(Image credit: Silentnight)
HIGHLIGHTSSUITABILITY
• Purotex treated top-layer
• Handcrafted medium feel mattress
• 3-year guarantee
• Sleepers prone to allergies
• Sleepers looking for pressure relief
• People who enjoy feeling cradled while sleeping

The Silentnight 3 Zone Memory Foam Mattress is a medium feel mattress with a foam design, standing at 18cm deep. The top layer of this mattress is soft and treated with Purotex which is meant to reduce moisture and dust-mite allergens while creating a cleaner, healthier mattress. As you sleep, your body temperature activates the bacteria and multiplies it, the bacteria then replaces and kills off any harmful bacteria that may be present. 

The second layer is the memory foam layer that cradles and hugs your body as you sleep. This layer relieves pressure and keeps the weight off your bones and joints, allowing you to sink into the supportive layer below.

The support layer is a zoned Miratex foam layer. This provides soft support for your shoulders and firmer support for your lower back and hips. This support layer works with the above-mentioned memory foam layer to cradle and relieve pressure. Finally, the bottom of the mattress is the containment for the layers. The soft and durable base encases the mattress and keeps things in place.

The Silentnight 3 Zone Memory Foam Mattress is one of the cheapest and most affordable mattresses from Silentnight comes with free delivery to the UK, a 60-night trial and a 3-year guarantee.

(Video credit: Silentnight)

7. John Lewis Essentials Collection Mattress

Up to 20% OFF
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John Lewis Discount Voucher Code
Visit John Lewis and Partners for the latest sales!! | T&Cs apply.
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john lewis essentials collection budget mattress
(Image credit: John Lewis & Partners)
HIGHLIGHTSSUITABILITY
• High breathability
• No need for flipping
• Spring core for a supportive sleeping surface
• Most sleeping positions
• Sleepers who dislike foam mattresses
• Single sleepers

Another Best Budget and “cheap” Mattress favourite is the John Lewis & Partners Pocket Spring Mattress. This 20cm deep comes with free delivery and a 7-year guarantee. The mattress does not need to be flipped but should be rotated every now and then to ensure longevity and durability. 

The John Lewis Pocket Spring Mattress has a spring layer, polyester fillings and is finished with a flat micro-quilted soft stretch knit fabric as the cover. The side panels have been vertically quilted as well. This makes the cover durable with an added softness to the touch.

The fillings for the mattress are a polyester blend, with an added deep layer of vertically placed polyester. This is here to increase the comfort of the mattress and provide more softness for your body to sink into. 

The spring layer consists of 1,000 springs in the king size. This supportive spring layer is designed to offer sturdy support for your body, allowing you to sink into the softness of the polyester fillings and land on a supportive base spring system. This spring layer creates a medium feel mattress, for everyday use. The design of the springs, being individually wrapped, allows for a better response as you sleep. This allows you to move about and remain supported as the springs move with you.

Experts Advice

A decent mattress can set you back a lot of money, and with the average person spending up to one-third of their life in bed, it’s not something that most people want to compromise on quality, which is why getting a good balance between affordable and quality is key.

Cheap mattresses aren’t what they used to be back in the 90s, where you could feel every spring. On the contrary, you can actually get some pretty comfortable mattresses at budget prices these days, so there’s really no need to splash out too much cash unless you really do need a top-of-the-range mattress for medical purposes.

The best way to save money on your purchases is to shop savvy online. You should hold out (if possible) for a sale on your chosen mattress so that the one you have picked is already reduced. Then before purchasing, check out a cashback website such as top cashback or Quidco to see if the retailer offers cashback on purchases. Then finally, have a search around for a voucher code online, or where applicable use a student discount. You can also try signing up to the retailer's emails, as new customers usually get a voucher code for subscribing.

This way you’re getting a triple whammy of savings, which is always helpful on large purchases.

Online Shopping Expert & Money Saving Central Founder Claire Roach

Cheap And Budget Mattress Expectations

Finding a fair-quality mattress around the £200 mark can be pretty limiting. What you can expect is generally memory foam mattresses as some hybrid mattresses are normally more expensive. These mattresses may not have the same quality as other mattresses that go for around £500, however, you can find some mattresses with a 100-night trial and 10-year warranty which is often attached to pricier mattresses.

According to an NBF Annual Report around 46% of mattress purchases are made between the £100 and £399 mark and only 5% less than £100.

There are some instances where cheaper and budget mattresses are probably your best option. If you are looking for a short-term bed solution, looking to buy a mattress for a kid, or if it's for a guest room, college/ teenagers room or even if you are just a very budget-conscious buyer. Our guide to finding the best cheap mattress can be of great help in situations like these.

Which? is a 100% independent consumer testing organisation and are known for their mattress Best Buy approvals. Which? found that from around 200 mattresses being tested, 4 mattresses for less than £300 received a Best Buy award as compared to 8 in the price range of £301-£500. This may give some indication that mattresses above £301 could be of better quality.

Which? is the UK’s consumer champion. As an organisation, we’re not for profit and all for protecting consumers – a powerful force for good, here to make life simpler, fairer and safer for everyone.

How To Find The Best Budget Mattress

More often than not, a higher price equals higher quality but that does not mean that all cheap mattresses will lack quality. However, buying a cheap mattress with no reliable information may lead to health issues in addition to wasting your money so make sure to do your research in advance.

Studies show✓ that 50% to 80% of adults have experienced at least one episode of back pain during a lifetime. Besides providing comfort, high-quality mattresses are often marketed as being able to lower the risk of developing spinal pain, which is a fundamental aspect to consider for one's physical health and well-being.

The first question you should ask yourself is if the cheap purchase will come at a higher cost in the long run. Some factors should affect your final decision, such as:

  • Firmness rating and materials
  • Capacity and size
  • Added features
  • Safety

Best Cheap Mattress Firmness And Materials

Foam, hybrid, or latex? Memory foam mattresses provide notable durability as well as pressure relief. This type of mattress is designed to evenly adapt to your body's shape, whilst latex mattresses are known to be very supportive and more breathable than foam mattresses. A study from NCBI✓ indicates that a mattress made of latex can distribute the body pressure more evenly as opposed to foam mattresses. Therefore, latex could be considered to be more suitable for back sleepers and side sleepers.

Some people struggle with overheating during the night and need a more breathable mattress to keep their cool. A pocket sprung or a hybrid mattress is usually a good option as the springs allow for more airflow than several dense foam layers do. The downside to these in comparison to foam and latex mattresses is that the springs provide less motion isolation. If you are sleeping next to a partner who tosses at night, the vibrations could potentially disturb your sleep.

Foam mattresses are good for couples

Another important factor to consider when looking for the best budget mattress for you is your desired firmness. Some people don't pay too much attention to this and are happy with something in between, such as a medium mattress. But to some people the firmness is fundamental. It can be due to the sleeper being overweight and needing a firm mattress for heavy people, or because of an injury or back pain that needs extra support. Make sure to check that the budget mattress you have in mind suits your firmness preferences.

Bed Measurements And Mattress Capacity

Before opting for a low-cost option, make sure the mattress' measurements and weight capacity match the bed and the sleeper. Mattresses usually have a maximum weight that they can support and cheap mattresses can sometimes have a slightly lower capacity. Check the product description to evaluate its maximum supported weight, and whether it is ideal for a single person or as a couple's mattress.

Check the size and weight capacity on your cheap mattress

It goes without saying, but the smaller the mattress the lower the price. Double-check that the budget mattress you have your eyes on is not cheap because it is a single while you are actually looking for a king size. If you are unclear about the UK mattress and bed sizes, make sure to check out our guide.

Added Features In Budget Mattresses

Even the most affordable brands can come with innovative technologies in terms of microorganism control and orthopaedic action. Allergy UK is a British label that certifies products for the benefit of people affected by allergies. Brands like Silentinight and Sealy mattresses are Allergy UK approved.

The presence of antimicrobial agents in mattresses prevents fungi and bacteria from penetrating the material, which works in favour of your respiratory health, as well as your sleep quality. 

Did you know?
We shed over 8 pounds (3.6 kg) of dead skin cells per year while sleeping.

The presence of some bacteria can build up to allergic reactions, and even infections. On that account, it is vital to choose your best cheap mattress wisely. Remember that sometimes cheap can come with a higher cost. At the end of the day, your health comes first.

Cheap Mattress Safety Certifications

Have you ever noticed that your new mattress smells a bit strange? Cheap mattresses are likely to carry volatile organic compounds (also known as VOCs✓) which can be noticed upon opening the mattress. These are however harmless in smaller doses and can be found in daily life products, such as foam mattresses but also frying pans, furniture and office materials like printers for example.

A non-toxic mattress could easily fit your budget, but make sure the mattress compositions meet the standards set out by transparent and reliable certifications.  

Choosing a certified brand will help you distinguish harmful chemicals from safer alternatives. Make sure the materials integrated into the budget mattress of your choice will pass the UK Fire regulations as this is a requirement in the UK. A study✓ shows strong evidence of increasing contamination of the environment, wildlife, and people caused by the widespread production and use of Brominated Fire Retardants(BFR). 

Cheap mattresses may include more chemicals

The Breast Cancer UK has conducted a study and listed the most common flame retardants used in the UK. According to a background briefing evaluation✓, some of these chemicals could potentially increase the risk of health problems. 

Other interesting certifications to look for when searching for the best cheap mattress are Certi-PUR and Oeko-Tex. These are two of the main labels that set out global and transparent standards for healthier foams. As for natural materials like cotton or latex, GOLS and GOTS are two organisations that identify and evaluate the use of chemical inputs. 

Looking for organic and natural mattresses could be an alternative if you are worried about harmful chemicals.

Online Shopping Vs In-Store Shopping

Opting for online shopping can be a practical move and save you a lot of money and time, as prices are generally lower than in-store products. But, here again, comes the question of mattress quality.

As we all know, online purchases cannot be tested. In some cases, the products lack detailed description. In this case, we recommend meticulous research through a reliable online platform. Check consumer reviews, official reports, online forums where products can be rated on a scale of 1 to 5 stars.

Another option is to go to a mattress store to try out some of the mattresses you have found interesting online and then purchase the mattress online if you like how it feels. A good mattress store should allow you to calmly lay down on the mattress and feel the firmness and how it adapts to your body for a few minutes. This should give you a somewhat better idea about if this is the best cheap mattress for you and your needs.

Alternatively, if you need more time to decide, you could look into mattresses with trials, as some of the brands within this industry offer trials from 30-nights up to even 356-nights. Just make sure to read the fine print to fully understand how the trial period works.

If you decide to go forward with online shopping though, make sure the total value of the mattress, adding up the purchase price and shipping cost is worth the risk. It may happen that despite applying discount codes or finding cheap deals, sometimes the brand charges higher shipping costs to make up for the low value of the mattress.

Online shopping is often cheaper

Timing And Researching

Purchasing a mattress during sale periods such as Black Friday and Cyber Monday will increase the chances of getting a high-quality bed on a low budget. However, sales advertisement can be a tricky strategy that will make you believe you are paying half of the price for an overpriced mattress when in the end, the original retail value of such product has always been the "now" price advertised.  

Compare the best value from different brands based on your personal needs. The researching stage is a vital step when choosing the best budget mattress, as it is possible to find a cheap mattress with similar high-quality features as a £1000 premium mattress.

Frequently Asked Questions

Where can I buy a cheap mattress?

You can buy cheap mattresses online from Happy Beds, Mattress Next Day, Mattressman among other retailers. There is a wide range of online websites that include budget-friendly mattresses in their catalogue. Remember to search on reliable pages where you can get transparent warranties and return policies.

Where can I find cheap mattress sets?

 You can find cheap mattress sets from Amazon, Panda or Evesleep. Make sure the mattress set comes with two essential parts: the mattress and the accompanying box spring set.

Where to buy a cheap memory foam mattress?

There is a myriad of cheap memory foam mattresses which you can find from Amazon, Inofia, Vesgantti etc. Make sure that the mattress not only suits your budget but also your sleeping needs.

How much is a cheap mattress?

A cheap mattress can generally range from £60 to £250. What is considered cheap for some might be considered expensive for others. The important thing this is to find a balance between the cost and your needs.

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