When Consumer Reports asked readers about their favorite brands of memory foam mattresses, Casper and Tuft & Needle, two bed-in-a-box startups, rose to the top. And when we recently tested their reconfigured beds, Casper (shown above) and Tuft & Needle (shown below) grabbed the first and third spots, respectively, in the memory foam mattresses category. After a short sabbatical while we performed the new tests, these memory foam mattresses are back in our ratings.

Both redesigned memory foam mattresses are an improvement over the earlier versions, which still did very well in our tests. A fourth layer of foam was added to the Casper; the overall thickness remains the same. The new Casper, $850, is slightly softer but even more durable, which means it is less likely to sag over the years.

Tuft & Needle also changed its foam layers but reduced the three layers to just two, including one with cooling gel. The new Tuft & Needle, $600, is just as firm as the old one, and it, too, proved to be more durable in our tests that simulate eight years of use.

Casper edged out Tuft & Needle in its consistent support scores for people who sleep on their side or on their back.

Casper was judged to be very good for petite, average, and large people who sleep on their side or on their back. Its stability score was also very good, meaning your sleeping partner is less likely to be disturbed when you turn over.

Tuft & Needle is very good for all sizes of side sleepers and for petite back sleepers but just middling for average and tall back sleepers. The stability score was very good.

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Tuft & Needle's memory foam mattresses
Photo: Tuft & Needle

More Choices

Sandwiched between the two newcomers is Costco’s Novaform 14-inch Serafina Pearl Gel, $800, which has similar scores to the Casper. All three mattress are CR Best Buys.

Not a fan of memory foam mattresses? We also test innerspring and adjustable air mattresses, three of which score slightly higher than the Casper. For innersprings, the Charles P. Rogers Powercore Estate 5000, $1,500, is very good for people who sleep on their side and excellent for back sleepers. It also aced the durability test and should retain its shape over time. Two innersprings from Sealy Posturepedic, the Hybrid Elite Kelburn, $1,350, and the Hybrid Trust Cushion, $1,275, tied with the Casper.

Two adjustable air beds from the same brand, the Sleep Number i8 Bed, $3,000, and the much cheaper Sleep Number c2 Bed, $700, were judged excellent overall. The i8 Bed is very good for side sleepers and excellent for back sleepers. The c2 Bed was almost the same, except it’s not quite as good for tall folks who sleep on their backs. Both are very durable, and the c2 Bed is firmer than the i8 Bed.