Best Soft Mattress in the UK 2022 – 5 Winning Models

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A soft mattress is generally best for lighter people.

The general theory is that a mattress should keep your spine straight. A lighter person’s hips and shoulders won’t sink enough on a firm mattress. An elephant would not get sufficient support from a soft mattress. Even a baby elephant would struggle.

Unfortunately, each manufacturer means something slightly different when they offer their ‘soft mattress’.

John Lewis & Partners provide a useful rule of thumb. They says that their soft mattresses are suitable for people who weigh under 8 stone. Their medium mattresses are for people who weigh 8 – 16 stone.

It’s also a question of comfort, although the two tend to go together. If you are sufficiently supported then you will feel comfortable in the long run. If you are uncomfortable you will climb out of bed and start walking like the Hunchback of Notre Dame.

The importance of the position you sleep in

Another thing to consider is your sleeping position. People who sleep on their sides tend to need softer mattresses so that there isn’t too much pressure on their hips and shoulders.

Leilnahari, Fatouraee et al summarised this in a 2011 academic paper

‘If the shoulders can’t sag into the mattress, then the support of neck and back won’t be satisfactory and the shoulder joint will suffer in contact surface from high stresses leading to pain and joint stiffness’

Spine alignment in men during lateral sleep position: experimental study and modeling

Conversely though their research also warned that ‘measurements show that a too soft or too firm mattress is no good choice’. They added that ‘soft surfaces cause the increase in low back pain due to incorrect support of vertebral column’.

Please note, I’m not qualified in back care, I’m just quoting useful advice to point you in the right direction.

Is a soft mattress right for you?

If you combine the factors of sleeping position and your weight/build then you’ll have an idea of whether a soft mattress is right for you. 

We’ve picked out five soft mattresses from 2021 which are worth considering. We looked at a combination of industry awards, customer reviews, specifications and value for money.

Prices are for double mattresses. Review scores and prices are correct at the time of writing.


1. Brook + Wilde Lux Mattress (soft version) – £899

Brook + Wilde probably isn’t a name you’re familiar with, unless you follow the mattress world as enthusiastically as me. However, the soft version of their Lux mattress is worth a look as it was been given the thumbs up by expert testers in 2019 (although they actually tested the firm version of the same mattress). Good Housekeeping also gave their approval.

It uses springs and foam and is one of those ‘bed in a box’ mattresses which expand in your bedroom. There are 2000 mini springs along with 1000 larger pocket springs to give plenty of support. Pocket springs are far superior to the old fashioned ‘open coil’ springs that you get on a cheap mattress.

There’s also a layer of memory foam, which offers consistent support and is less bouncy. Some people find memory foam a bit warm. However, mattresses like this one use ‘breathable’ and ‘cooling’ memory foam to try and overcome this.

​The Lux Mattress also has a long warranty (10 years) and the option to swap it for a different firmness or ask for a refund if it’s not right for you within 100 days. Read the FAQ for more on how this works.

As with most of these ‘bed in a box’ mattresses, you can’t turn it over so you just rotate it round.

The Brook + Wilde brand is scoring a very impressive 4.7/5 on TrustPilot.

Pros and cons: how does it rate?

“The main risk with a Brook + Wilde mattress is buying a brand that you might not have heard of. The company lacks the history of Sealy or Hypnos. However, the 100 night trial period is very appealing and removes a lot of that risk. Plus, it is currently outperforming those more established brands on TrustPilot reviews.”

“The choice of firmness levels is a big plus point. Most of these so-called ‘bed in a box’ brands offer a one-firmness-fits-all mattress but that won’t be right for everyone. If you find that the soft version of the Lux mattress is too soft then you can try the medium version.”

“The spec is also good, and it compares well on spring count and overall depth”

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Brook + Wilde’s Lux Mattress comes with a trial period so you can return it if you don’t like it
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52% off the Lux Mattress + 100 night trial + choice of firmness levels
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2. Sealy Teramo 1400/Sealy Nostromo 1400 – £599

Expert testers went wild for the Sealy Teramo 1400, which is a pocket sprung mattress with a topper to add a bit of extra softness. 

It goes under several different names including the Sealy Nostromo 1400. There’s no difference in specifications between them, as far as I can tell.

Sealy claims to be the ‘biggest bed brand in the world’.

One downside is that you can’t turn it over, because of the topper. Some people suggest that mattresses which can’t be turned over aren’t as durable. However, that wasn’t a criticism offered by expert testers who looked at this one. 

Customer reviews are just under 9/10 on Mattress Online.

The 1400 number refers to the number of pocket springs. That will provide plenty of support, unless you happen to be a very large individual. If that’s the case, you might actually be better getting a firmer mattress.

There’s some inconsistency about how firm this mattress is, but the official Sealy website says it is soft. Most sites I’ve found say that it is soft/medium firmness.

Why is this soft mattress describes as being Posturepedic?

The Sealy Teramo 1400 is described as being ‘Posturepedic’. I’ll offer some guidance for those sifting through the jargon with a befuddled look.

This is a design feature of some Sealy mattresses. It means that the middle bit of the mattress has been ‘reinforced…to support your back and core’.

The science behind this is compelling and was explored by Leilnahari, Fatouraee et al in Iran in 2011. Researchers concluded that there are benefits to having different levels of support in different places. Their research looked generally at mattresses with ‘different zonal elasticity’ rather than this mattress specifically. However, the principle is an interesting one.

Another piece of research looked at different mattress materials, including latex which is used in the top layer on the Sealy Teramo 1400. Hou and Zhang (2020) found that latex gained a ‘high evaluation’ from ‘younger and middle aged’ people in their studies.

Pros and cons: how does it rate?

“The Sealy brand is huge and this model is one of their biggest sellers.”

“In the pros column is the use of latex, which is a natural material. Oz, Merav et al studied the ‘volatile organic compound emissions’ on foam mattresses and found that ‘Under sleeping conditions VOC emissions increased significantly’ (2019). Meanwhile, natural latex will ‘produce lower levels of gases’ according to WebMD. Of course, this mattress isn’t 100% latex, but it is the part of the mattress that you will be closest to when sleeping”.

“A negative with this mattress is that there’s no trial period. Thankfully it is popular enough that you might find it in a showroom.”

Sealy nostromo pillowtop mattress
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The Sealy Teramo scores 9/10 from reviewers on Mattress Online
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3. Hypnos Premier Luxury Pillowtop Pocket Sprung Mattress – £1035

I was always a big fan of that old Ferrero Rocher advert where they said ‘with these chocolates, the ambassador is really spoiling us’. Well, the ambassador probably provides his guests with Hypnos mattresses too. 

They’re at the posh end of the market and have a Royal Warrant. Despite that, some models aren’t as expensive as you might assume.

Hypnos was named as National Bed Federation’s best manufacturer 2014 and 2017 and runner up in 2018.
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The Premier is available as a soft feel mattresses and it has a number of signs of quality. These include ‘hand side stitching’ which gives it strength right to the edges. That is one of the key features that tends to increase the price of a mattress. 

This mattress has a built in topper, so you can’t turn it over. That’s generally not my preferred option for a mattress as turning over can help reduce dips and sags over time.

However, turning a king size or super king size mattress is a bit like wrestling an ox so lots of people don’t tend to bother anyway. Watch the video guide here.

Pros and cons: how does it rate?

“Let’s start with the positives. A 10 year warranty on a pocket spring mattress is very good. You’ll find that only Vispring offer longer warranties. It’s a different story with bed in a box foam mattresses where 10 years is now the norm.”

“Hypnos’ company reputation is certainly another positive. They’ve won genuinely impressive awards. Some mattresses proudly display prizes which are handed out like sweets at a children’s birthday party”

“The inclusion of a topper creates that soft feel, but it does mean that the mattress is single sided unfortunately. And of course, you’re spending £1000 on something which you can’t return if you don’t find it comfortable. The Brook + Wilde Lux is a better choice if that’s your priority”

Hypnos Premier Mattress
Hypnos make mattresses for the Queen and have won industry awards
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Softer mattress + good spring count + very deep design
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4. Vispring Devonshire Pocket Sprung Mattress – £1645

Unfortunately, there’s no industry agreement on what weight you should be to use a soft mattress. Only a few mattress companies give specific guidance. Vispring is one of them.

Vispring suggest that their ‘soft’ mattresses are ideal for people who weigh under 11 stone. I’d be wary of applying the same rule to other mattress brands. One company’s soft mattress may not be the same firmness as another’s.

Vispring also happen to be one of the poshest, most luxurious and expensive mattresses on the market. They invented the pocket spring mattress many years ago and have built up a lot of heritage and a solid reputation. They won mattress brand of the year in 2015, 2016 and 2017.

We’ve picked out Vispring’s Devonshire mattress which is available in soft, medium and firm. It’s not their most expensive but it’s a traditional style and uses good quality, natural materials. These include as wool and coir which comes from coconuts.

It’s not got as many spring as their top end mattresses, but it will provide enough support for lighter people. There are about 1300 springs on the king size version. Most guides reckon somewhere between 1000 and 2000 is fine for most people.

There’s a limit to how many springs you can fit onto a mattress, so mattresses which say they have thousands of springs usually have more than one layer of small springs. Watch the video guide to the Devonshire here.

Pros and cons: how does it rate?

“Yes, it’s expensive but you’re paying for quality and it’s certainly more affordable than some Vispring mattresses. A plus point is the inclusion of natural materials. These are thought to have lower VOC emissions than foam based mattresses (according to WebMD).”

“I like the fact it’s double sided as that can help prolong the life of a mattress. The warranty length is staggering at 30 years” 

“There are enough springs for most people. Very heavy people might benefit from a higher number which could double the price”

“Of course, the high price compared to its rivals will put off a lot of people as well”

Vispring Devonshire soft mattress
Vispring mattresses are about as posh and prestigious as they come
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Prestigious brand + long warranty + pocket spring design
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5. Tempur Cloud Soft Mattress – £2249

If you can afford it, take a look at the Tempur Cloud range which is available in three different thicknesses (the price above is for the cheapest one as a double mattress). It’s the softest mattress they offer and comes in 21cm, 25cm and 30cm. For a lighter-than-average person, one of the thinner options would probably be perfectly good enough.

Tempur is a prestigious name and was a pioneer in the memory foam market, after developing materials used by NASA. Interestingly, the official blurb says that their product is now different to ‘standard’ memory foam as it ‘absorbs and distributes pressure’ and has ‘minimal motion transfer’.

Some people don’t like the slight sinking feeling that you get with memory foam and similar products, but others find that it offers much more consistent support than springs. It’s also better for allergies as it doesn’t collect dust as easily as a ‘natural’ material.

If you buy from Tempur then their mattresses come with a 100 night trial, although do check the terms and conditions first as there is some important small print.

Pros and cons: how does this soft mattress rate?

“A big positive with Tempur is that they have been developing their foam mattresses for decades. They’ve been selling mattresses in the UK since the 1990s whereas most memory foam brands have appeared in the last 10 years – and a small number have disappeared as well.”

“They’ve also got a big range of three depths and four firmness levels, whereas many cheaper rivals have a like-it-or-return it approach to firmness”

“Of course, a big negative is the price tag which is triple or quadruple what other foam mattresses cost” 

Tempur cloud elite mattress
Tempur is a pioneering mattress brand but they aren’t cheap
Tempur Cloud mattress
If you buy direct from Tempur, you get a trial period with your mattress
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The top of the Tempur Cloud mattress is flat, unlike most pocket spring mattresses which have a tufted finish
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100 Night Trial + Original Memory Foam Brand
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