Child sleeping in bed

(© Konstantin Yuganov -

Shopping for the best children’s mattress might seem simple, but there’s actually quite a bit to it. Factors such as firmness, materials, trial periods, delivery options, ratings, comfortability, warranty, etc. Deep breath. That’s not to mention, your child’s preferences. Does Sally sleep on her back or her side? Does she toss and turn, or sleep stick straight? There’s a lot that goes into choosing the place we spend a third of our lives: a bed. And then there are external factors that affect sleep quality.  

A study examined how light affects kids’ sleep. For preschool-aged children, exposure to light before bedtime, even at low intensities, results in robust and sustained melatonin suppression. Turns out, exposure to light — even dim ones — delays melatonin production for 50 minutes after. So, if your child’s room has a nightlight, they may be jumping on the bed, rather than sleeping on it. 

Why does it matter? Besides kids being grumpy the next day, there’s implications that lost sleep in childhood may impact long-term mental health. Researchers at the Norwegian University of Science and Technology found children who don’t get enough sleep at night have a greater risk of developing mental health problems like depression and anxiety when they’re older. This study focused on sleep time, not quality, but quality is important, too.

Researchers found children who snore regularly don’t just suffer from interrupted sleep — the problem may affect their brains as well. A team from the University of Maryland say they have discovered structural changes in the brains of children who snore. These changes show a connection to behavioral problems such as lack of focus, hyperactivity and learning difficulties at school.  

To help give your child a good night’s sleep, we found the consensus best children’s mattresses after researching 11 expert reviews. Just like every kid is different, so is every mattress. The sleep trials should come in handy if you’re unsure about your child’s sleep preferences. Read on for the experts’ recommendations!

The List: Top 5 Children’s Mattresses, According To Experts

1. Saatva Youth Mattress recommends this mattress for kids older than three, writing, “The best part about this innerspring mattress is that it supports kids between the ages of 3 and 12 years old thanks to its dual-sided design. Both sides feature an organic cotton cover (with a waterproof finish!) and a supportive coil system. On the side for ages 3 to 7 years old, there is a five-zone foam layer that promotes spinal alignment. The side for 8- to 12-year-olds contains a high-density foam to help keep your child cool and comfortable throughout the night.” 

In addition to these features, the price and service is nice: “Although Saatva is often thought of as a luxury brand, the Saatva Youth model is affordably priced (starting at $749 for a twin size). The mattress comes with free white-glove delivery, meaning not only is the mattress delivered to your door, but a representative will set it up for you and remove your child’s old mattress,” Mattress Advisor says.

Gizmodo also likes the service, as well as the sleep trial and hypoallergenic qualities: “The dual-sided Saatva Youth mattress is designed to grow with your child, from toddlers to pre-teens. Plus, this mattress is made with a 100 percent cotton cover, so you can rest easy knowing your children are enveloped in hypoallergenic comfort. Just like Saatva’s other luxury mattresses, the Youth mattress comes with complimentary white-glove delivery and a 120-night sleep trial.” 

2. Helix Kids

The runner-up for best children’s mattress is from Helix. 

Sleep Foundation likes the versatility, saying, “The Helix Kids Mattress has several features that cater specifically to children. We recommend this mattress for its dual-sided design and water-repellent finish. The mattress earned high marks in our temperature neutrality tests, partly thanks to the enhanced airflow through the coil support core. So it should feel cool and comfortable even if your child tends to sleep hot. The support core features 5-inch pocketed coils that provide targeted support to your child’s hips and shoulders. The gel in this layer is engineered to absorb and dissipate excess body heat. Helix ships free to all 50 states and offers families 100 nights to try out the mattress. The Helix Kids mattress also comes with a 10-year warranty.” 

“Balancing standout features and a reasonable price tag, this mattress is two-sided yet costs less than comparable models,” Good Housekeeping writes. “The hybrid model combines coils in the center with foam at the surfaces. Its firmer foam side is for 3-7-year-olds, while the softer side is for 8-12-year-olds. Other standout features include a TENCEL cover that’s both soft and breathable, plus a waterproof finish to protect against stains. Like other memory foam options included in this article, it’s CertiPUR-US certified. This model ships compressed in a box for DIY setup.”

3. Nest Bedding Puffin

According to CNET, “This two-layer Puffin Mattress from Nest Bedding has a 5-inch base layer that offers the ideal amount of support for a child’s body weight, plus two inches of a highly responsive memory foam that reacts quickly to movement and makes it easier for your child to adjust positions during the night. The foams are all CertiPUR-US certified, which means that they contain very low amounts of potentially harmful chemicals, and all mattresses are aired out in Nest Bedding’s factories prior to delivery to help reduce off-gassing. Prices start at $499.” 

The Sleep Doctor put it to the test: “While the mattress is designed for children under 110 pounds, our testers between 130 and 230 pounds found it comfortable for all sleep positions. Our back and stomach sleepers under 130 pounds also felt the mattress’ sturdier support helped keep their spines aligned. To avoid heat retention, the cover contains phase change material designed to maintain temperature neutrality by adapting in response to body heat. As a result, our evaluations showed that the mattress slept much cooler than most all-foam beds. The Puffin comes with a 30-night sleep trial and is protected by a limited lifetime warranty.” 

4. Nectar

“The Nectar is a nice option for kids because it has a firmer-than-average feel that should offer most growing bodies adequate support. It also sleeps pretty cool, thanks to a gel infusion in its foam layer. There’s also a comfort layer of gel memory foam to help prevent the formation of pressure points,” Sleepopolis says.

Forbes also likes this choice, writing, “Nectar is known for delivering quality mattresses to your doorstep at low prices. It features several inches of memory foam to cushion your child as they snooze, along with a sturdy base layer (crucial with kiddos) and a shift-resistant lower cover to round everything out. But this mattress has some impressive perks, like a 365-day home trial and the brand’s Forever Warranty, which ensures your mattress will either be repaired or replaced if something happens to it. Another great feature? This mattress includes a mattress protector, sheets and pillows, all for $399.”

5. Brooklyn Bedding Bowery Hybrid 

This is a clear winner for Mattress Clarity: “The Brooklyn Bedding Bowery is an affordable mattress that a lot of people will like because of its value and the pressure relief it provides. The Bowery only features three foam layers. It’s a simple design for kids who shouldn’t be sleeping on a thick, over-designed mattress. It’s only 10″ thick, which is a proper thickness for a kid’s bed. The comfort layer contains a responsive foam called Energex, making it easier for kids to switch between their back, side, and stomach during the night.” 

InsiderLiving also recommends this versatile choice: “The Brooklyn Bowery Hybrid mattress isn’t specifically made for kids. But don’t fret! This mattress still has plenty of important and cool features. This hybrid mattress’ memory foam and cushioned coils ensure that your child sleeps comfortably while still being supported. This is important for a growing child that needs a mattress that keeps their spine aligned while offering ease of movement. If your child tosses and turns a lot or is a combo sleeper, he/she will greatly appreciate this mattress! The Brooklyn Bowery Hybrid mattress comes with a 10-year warranty and a 120-night sleep trial.” 

Let us know if you have any other recommendations for childrens mattresses in the comments below!


Note: This article was not paid for nor sponsored. Study Finds is not connected to nor partnered with any of the brands mentioned and receives no compensation for its recommendations. This post may contain affiliate links.

About Stephanie Vallette

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