Full size mattresses, also called double mattresses, are a popular pick for guest rooms and smaller master bedrooms. Shorter and narrower than a queen mattress but with more sleeping space than a twin mattress, a standard full size mattress is about 54 inches wide and 75 inches long. However, the size of a mattress isn’t the only important factor when selecting the best full size mattress.
There are a number of other features to consider and a huge selection of products on the market, which can make finding the ideal full size mattress for your specific needs and preferences a challenge. This guide can help you learn more about the key features to consider as you shop for a full size mattress, and it highlights some of the top products on the market.
- BEST OVERALL: Saatva Classic Luxury Firm Mattress
- BEST BANG FOR THE BUCK: Linenspa Essentials Always Cool Hybrid Mattress
- BEST MEMORY FOAM: Nectar Memory Foam Mattress
- BEST HYBRID: Avocado Green Mattress
- BEST PILLOW TOP: The WinkBed
- BEST COOLING: GhostBed Luxe Mattress
- BEST FIRM: HELIX Dawn Luxe Mattress
What to Consider When Choosing the Best Full Size Mattress
Taking some time to determine preferences and priorities can help ensure satisfaction with the full size mattress you ultimately purchase. The key considerations below can help you identify and prioritize which full size mattress features are most important to you.
One of the biggest decisions to make before purchasing a mattress is the type of mattress you’d prefer. Some types are better suited to different sleeping positions and needs. There are five main types of mattresses to consider, and each offers its own pros and cons.
- Innerspring: Innerspring mattresses feature a core designed with steel coils. The coils are covered with foam, such as memory foam or polyfoam, to provide cushioning and comfort. Innerspring mattresses are typically a firmer option preferred by many back and stomach sleepers. They are springier, more responsive, and less contouring than most other mattress types. Innerspring mattresses with individually wrapped coils can limit motion transfer from one side of the bed to the other, which can be a nice benefit for couples sharing a bed.
- Foam: Foam mattresses are designed with layers of memory foam or polyfoam. Additional layers for support made from a denser foam are typically included with these mattresses. A foam mattress is highly contouring and can offer relief from pressure for all individuals but especially those who sleep on their side. Foam mattresses can be effective at limiting motion transfer.
- Hybrid: Hybrid mattresses combine features from different mattress types. They typically have a pocketed-coil support core along with other layers made from materials such as memory foam, polyfoam, and latex. A hybrid mattress is supportive but also offers pressure relief and body-conforming properties. The coil design of these mattresses allows for sufficient airflow to regulate the temperature. Since hybrid mattresses often feature individually wrapped coils and often have a layer of memory foam, they can be a good option if you’re looking for a mattress to limit motion transfer.
- Latex: Made from rubber tree sap and chemical fillers, latex is responsive and offers some contouring properties. Unlike memory foam that sinks in too much for some users, latex prevents individuals from sinking too deep into the mattress. Latex is also more breathable than memory foam and other foam types, so it allows for a cooler sleep space. The elasticity of a latex mattress that allows it to conform to an individual’s body also allows the mattress to reduce the transfer of motion from one side to the other.
- Pillow top: Pillow-top mattresses typically feature an innerspring base with an additional top layer of padding. This padded top layer is typically between 2 and 4 inches thick and may be made from memory foam, latex, wool, gel, fiberfill, or other plush materials. Pillow-top mattresses are popular with side sleepers since their plush top can be very conforming and take pressure off the joints. The design of the mattress beneath the pillow-top layer will affect how effective this mattress type is at limiting motion transfer.
Pressure points are the areas of our bodies where we feel the greatest amount of pressure when lying down. An individual’s sleeping position can affect which areas experience the greatest pressure. For example, side sleepers feel the greatest pressure on their hips and shoulders, while back sleepers feel the greatest pressure on their backs.
Look for mattresses that are designed to provide more even support to the body, as this can reduce the amount of pressure placed on any one area of the body. A hybrid mattress may be the optimal choice for a guest room since it offers more balanced pressure relief and is less likely to be too firm or too soft for individuals with different sleep preferences. A mattress with higher contouring properties typically offers more pressure relief than one that does not contour to a body.
Contouring refers to how much a mattress conforms to the body of the individual sleeping on it. A mattress with a lot of contouring properties will create more of a cradle around the body while still offering even support for the hips and torso. Latex, foam, and hybrid mattresses are known for their contouring abilities. A hybrid mattress might be the best option for a guest room since this mattress type can often provide the right level of contouring to keep many back, side, or stomach sleepers comfortable.
Conversely, a mattress that doesn’t have high contouring properties will be stiffer and won’t create that cradle-like shape around a body. Innerspring mattresses are typically less contouring than other mattress types.
Density and Firmness
Mattresses come in a range of firmness options. Manufacturers typically indicate how firm a mattress is using a scale from 1 to 10, with 1 being a very soft mattress and 10 being a very firm mattress. Mattresses on the softer end of the range (with a firmness level between about 1 and 3) will be plusher and allow the body to sink relatively deep into the mattress for a more cradled or contoured feeling.
Mattresses on the firm end of the scale (with firmness levels between 7 and 10) will be quite the opposite; they will offer more support and less contouring around the body. If you are looking for something in between these two levels or share a bed with a partner who may have a different ideal firmness than you, consider a mattress with a medium level of firmness (firmness level between 4 and 6). A medium-firm mattress may also be a good option for a guest bedroom since different guests may have different firmness preferences.
The density of the foam used on a mattress is another factor to consider. Mattresses with high-density foam can offer more support and contouring than mattresses made with low-density foam. For this reason, a high-density mattress is a better option for back sleepers since a low-density mattress won’t offer the support they need. High-density foam can have more of a cradling feel that many sleepers enjoy. However, some individuals don’t enjoy the feeling of sinking into the mattress with it surrounding their body and may opt for a mattress made with low-density foam. High-density mattresses trap heat and may make some sleepers too warm overnight. On the other hand, low-density mattresses allow more air to flow and can help keep individuals cooler.
Some mattresses are constructed with materials that are better at regulating temperature and creating a cooler environment for sleep. Cooling mattresses often feature breathable materials that allow for more air circulation and prevent the mattress from retaining heat.
If you are a hot sleeper and prefer a cooling mattress, consider mattresses with coils that promote airflow or those with gel or graphite infused into the foam layers to deliver cooling benefits. Gel or activated charcoal are sometimes infused into the foam of a mattress to regulate the temperate and keep individuals cool as they sleep. Gel absorbs heat and keeps the mattress’s temperature from getting too warm, and charcoal is a naturally cool substance that helps ensure the foam layer stays at a cool and comfortable temperature all night long.
Cooling materials may also be integrated into the cover of a mattress to make it more breathable. Tencel is one of these materials. It is a very breathable fabric that is able to wick away moisture to make sure individuals don’t get too warm as they sleep. You may also see mattresses that have a phase change molecule (PCM) fabric integrated into the material for the cover. PCM fabrics absorb heat when a body gets too hot. They can then release the heat back if the body cools down too much.
A preferred sleeping position can greatly affect which mattress is best. Some sleeping positions require greater support from a firmer mattress than others.
- Side sleepers. A softer mattress offers relief from pressure on the shoulders and hips. Side sleepers are often most comfortable on a mattress with a firmness rating between 3 and 5 out of 10. A mattress with a firmness rating in this range offers enough give to let the hips and shoulders sink in and prevent pressure points. Side sleepers often prefer memory foam or hybrid mattresses with a memory foam layer that allows for their weight to be more evenly distributed to reduce pressure on the joints.
- Back and stomach sleepers. A firmer mattress is generally recommended for both. This allows the spine to stay more aligned and offers the necessary support for the shoulders, hips, and head to keep individuals comfortable. When a mattress is too soft, the heavier parts of the body may sink more deeply into the mattress, which can place the spine out of alignment and cause pain the next day. Back sleepers often do well on a mattress with a firmness rating of around 6 or 7 out of 10, while stomach sleepers may be more comfortable on a mattress with a firmness rating of between 8 and 10 out of 10.
The edge support on a mattress can affect how easy or challenging it is to get in or out of bed. Mattresses with weaker edge support are softer around the edges and may sink down when individuals sit on the edge of the bed. A mattress with firmer edge support, on the other hand, won’t sink down as much to simplify the task of getting in or out of bed.
Edge support can also affect the usable sleeping space on the top of the mattress. It is possible to sleep right up to the edge of a mattress with firm edge support but not as easy to do so on a mattress with weaker edge support. Since full size beds are already on the smaller side for two individuals sleeping together, this may be an important item to consider if you’re shopping for a mattress that will be used by two people.
Our Top Picks
The following mattresses are from some of the top manufacturers and feature many of the materials and design features mentioned above. One of them is sure to be a worthy choice for your bedroom or guest room.
The Saatva Classic Full Mattress features a layered design to provide comfort and support for all types of sleepers. The top layer of the mattress is a 3-inch Euro pillow top covered with hypoallergenic organic cotton that is treated with an antimicrobial to keep the mattress cleaner. The high-density foam rails that surround the mattress provide better edge support than standard pillow-top mattresses offer, but users can still enjoy the plush, comforting, and cradling feel of a pillow-top mattress.
Beneath the Euro pillow top is a layer of individually wrapped comfort coils formed from 14.5-gauge recycled steel. These coils allow the mattress to contour to the shape of each body and minimize the transfer of motion from one side of the mattress to the other. The mattress also offers a CertiPUR-US certified high-density memory foam layer and active wire layer that help reduce pressure on the lower back by keeping the spine in alignment. The base layer offers 13-gauge, tempered-steel support coils to create a stable foundation, prevent sagging, and offer lasting durability. Choose from three firmness levels: plush soft (3), luxury firm (5 to 7), and firm (8) to select the ideal mattress for a bedroom or guest room.
This full size hybrid mattress from Linenspa is an ideal choice for individuals who are hot sleepers. A value for the money, it boasts numerous design features designed to provide a cool night’s sleep. The mattress has a layer of gel-infused memory foam, which dissipates heat to prevent it from getting trapped in the foam. Additionally, the various layers are designed to be breathable and allow for airflow for additional cooling properties.
While this may be an inexpensive mattress, it offers additional features found in more expensive products. For example, the mattress has active-relief memory foam designed to cradle the body with a medium-firm feel for all-night comfort and support. This mattress is suitable for side, stomach, and back sleepers because of its medium-firm feel. It is also hypoallergenic and offers low motion transfer to minimize disturbances to the other side of the bed. This budget-friendly full mattress may make an ideal addition to a guest room by offering guests a comfortable space to sleep and without spending too much money.
The full size Nectar Memory Foam Mattress is designed with a layer of gel memory foam that evenly distributes the weight of each individual to prevent a lumpy feel. The memory foam also offers relief from pressure points on the hips, shoulders, and legs to keep the spine in alignment. A cooling Tencel mattress cover sits atop the memory foam layer. This quilted layer is plush and allows for airflow for a cooler night’s sleep.
The third layer of the mattress is an adaptive response transition layer. This layer helps prevent individuals from sinking too deeply into the mattress while still allowing them to enjoy the cradling benefits of memory foam. The base layer provides stability and durability, and the mattress cover provides a textured finish to prevent the mattress from slipping around on a bed frame. This is a medium-firm mattress with a 6.5 out of 10 firmness rating.
This hybrid mattress from Avocado is a medium-firm (7 out of 10) mattress topped with a 3-inch layer of organic certified latex rubber foam. The design features individually wrapped tempered-steel coils arranged in five ergonomic zones to provide optimal support, evenly distribute weight, contour to each individual body, and alleviate pressure points.
No toxic fire retardants, polyurethane foams, or polyester are used to manufacture this mattress. It features GOTS (Global Organic Textile Standard) organic certified wool and cotton, GOLS (Global Organic Latex Standard) organic certified latex, and is a vegan choice. The organic latex foam is not only an eco-friendly material, but it also provides optimal temperature control and durability to enhance each user’s experience with the mattress. The organic wool creates a natural fire barrier around the mattress and wicks away moisture for cooling benefits. An organic cotton material that is comfortable, breathable, and cooling covers the mattress.
The WinkBed is a hybrid mattress with a luxurious Euro pillow top. The pillow top is crafted from a gel-infused foam to relieve pressure on the hips, shoulders, and joints by creating a plush, yet supportive, top. The Euro pillow-top design also allows this bed to offer more edge support than a standard pillow-top mattress to make it easier to get in or out of bed. A Tencel cover made from a eucalyptus-based performance fabric encases the mattress. This material absorbs moisture and leaves the mattress feeling cool for a refreshing night’s sleep.
The base of the mattress is constructed using individually pocketed coils. These coils promote airflow and breathability while also offering support. The coils are covered with a gel foam that minimizes motion transfer. The mattress also features a lumbar layer designed to offer support to the lumbar area for comfort and pain relief.
This full size mattress from GhostBed offers multiple layers with special cooling technology to prevent individuals from getting too hot when they sleep. The top layer of the bed is a special Ghost Ice Fabric that is very plush and feels cool to the touch. Beneath this layer is a 1-inch layer that offers an immediate burst of cool air for individuals lying on the bed. Next, a gel memory foam layer allows the mattress to conform to each person’s body for pressure relief and comfort.
The fourth layer of the mattress is the Ghost Ice Layer. This layer is designed with a thermo-sensitivity technology that detects heat and adjusts to keep the temperature cool. The Ghost Memory Foam Layer, the fifth layer, helps keep the spine in alignment to provide relief from pain. A responsive Ghost Bounce Layer is next to provide more contouring capabilities for a restful night’s sleep. Finally, the base layer is made of 7.5 inches of high-density foam to provide optimal support and durability to ensure this mattress lasts for many years to come. This mattress has a medium firmness rating of 5 to 6 out of 10.
Individuals looking for a firmer mattress may want to consider the Helix Dawn Luxe Mattress with an 8 to 9 out of 10 firmness rating. The mattress features a breathable pillow-top layer and gel visco layer that are firmer than what is found on many similar products. The pillow top is designed with a breathable Tencel fabric to allow more air to flow to keep individuals cool as they sleep, and the gel visco layer offers support and cushioning. The next layer on the mattress is a Helix Dynamic Foam layer that contours and reacts to the body to keep individuals comfortable. A transition layer is next to offer ergonomic support and ensure each user’s weight is evenly distributed.
This firm mattress also has an innerspring layer of more than 1,000 individually wrapped coils. The coils offer zoning technology to provide the right amount of support under each section of the body for optimal comfort; they give the mattress a softer feel beneath the shoulders and a firmer feel beneath the hips to keep the spine in alignment and alleviate pain and pressure. The final layer of this mattress is a DuraDense Foam layer that ensures the mattress is properly supported and makes it more durable.
FAQs About Full Size Mattresses
The frequently asked questions below and their corresponding answers offer additional information about selecting and using the best full size mattresses. Keep reading to gain more knowledge about full size mattresses.
Q. How big is a full size mattress?
A full size mattress is 54 inches wide and 75 inches long.
Q. Is a full and double mattress the same size?
Yes, a full size mattress is the same size as a double mattress. Both are 54 inches wide and 75 inches long.
Q. How do I choose a mattress?
There are a number of factors to consider when choosing a mattress. These include preferred sleeping position, the firmness of the mattress, the amount of edge support you’d like, and whether you’re looking for a cooling mattress.
Q. Can two adults sleep comfortably in a full size bed?
Two adults can fit on a full size bed, but many may find that a full size mattress does not offer enough space to sleep comfortably. Since a full size bed is 54 inches wide, that means each adult would have only 27 inches of space and would need to sleep close to their partner.
Q. Do you need a box spring with a mattress?
The type of bed frame you have can affect whether you need a box spring for a mattress or not. Platform beds or other beds with a solid foundation don’t require a box spring. Traditional bed frames may require a box spring, but you can confirm with the specific directions from the manufacturer.