14 Best Firm Mattress UK – Expert Buyers Guide (2021)

Last Updated on 26 Aug. 2020 comments (8)

So you’re after the best firm mattress?

Well you’re in the right place!

I’ve rounded up and reviewed the 5 best firm mattresses available. Whether you’re looking to sort out a bad back or you just can’t sleep on the soft bed you’ve got now we’ve got you covered.

Just click on the name in the table below to go to the website where you can order yours, or read on to the mattress reviews and click the Price & Reviews button to do the same thing there.

Top 5 Best Firm Mattresses Reviewed

1. Top Choice – Relyon Pocket Memory Classic 1500 Mattress

Relyon Pocket Memory Classic 1500 Mattress
  • 8 -Year Guarantee
  • 1500 Spring Count
  • 27 Cm Deep
  • Which Recommended

Firmness: Firm

PRICE & REVIEWS

The Relyon Hybrid is an excellent choice of firm mattress, the memory foam layer is only 5cm thick so it is more like a mattress topper keeping the whole thing firm and comfortable.

This memory foam layer also means you don’t have to flip the mattress instead you just have to turn it maybe once a year to stop it sagging.

The 27 cm depth is quite deep but it’s what’s necessary to keep the mattress firm. It’s not the deepest mattress I’ve seen so your bed sheets should still fit!

Lastly, it comes with a whopping 8-year guarantee! That is a long time to have your sleep guaranteed, and it takes you close to the 10-year mattress life expectancy.

Overall, A great mattress for a bad back with the extra support the memory foam will provide.

2. Best Medium-Firm Mattress – Nectar Sleep Memory Foam Mattress

FIRMNESS: Medium-Firm

  • Bed-in-a-box
  • 10-year guarantee
  • Supportive Memory Foam
  • Edge-to-edge support
  • 365-night sleep trial period

Sizes: Single, small double, double, king size and super king size

Huge Discount up to £450

NECTAR’S READER OFFER

  • £125 off Mattresses
  • Two Free Pillows.
  • Up to £450 off Bundles and
  • Up to 30% off Bedding

This is a really incredible mattress, made up of several layers of foam to give you maximum support and comfort for any sleep position while working perfectly on any bed frame.

It starts with a top layer of smart memory foam that’s under a cooling cover that works together to keep you cool and your body temperature regulated so you don’t overheat.

Next, you’ve got regular memory foam for comfort and support and comfort and that sits on a base layer of high-density foam that has 7 zoned support areas that give you more support in your hips back and shoulders with less in your head, stomach knees, and feet.

And you have the whole mattress to use because of its edge-to-edge support which allows you to sleep right up to the side of the bed and still be comfortable.

It’s also easily one of the best value mattresses with a 10-year guarantee and a 365-night trial so you can take it home and really test it out. If you don’t like it you can just send it back free of charge.

All-round one of the Best Medium-Firm Mattresses best medium firm mattress you can buy.

My full review of the Nectar can be found here.

3. Best for back Pain – Sleepeezee Backcare Ultimate 2000 Pocket Mattress

 Sleepeezee Backcare Ultimate 2000 Pocket Mattress

Brand: Sleepeezee

Filling: Pocket Spring

Firmness: Firm

  • 2000 Pocket Springs
  • 5-Year Guarantee
  • Orthopaedic Support
  • 26cm Depth

PRICE & REVIEW

This is a great mattress is you have lower back pain, the 2000 pocket springs make it ideal for giving your back the support it needs in every sleeping position. Specially designed to support the spine and lower back it’ll have you waking up comfortably every morning.

It being all pocket sprung makes it very firm and the 5-year guarantee will have you sleeping for many nights to come.

Again this is a no-flip mattress you just have to turn it periodically. Which is just what you want if you have a bad back!

Overall, this is a great mattress if you have back problems and are looking for the best firm mattress to sort it out.

4. Best Extra Firm Mattress – Happy Beds Supreme Ortho Spring Reflex Foam Orthopaedic Extra Firm Mattress

Supreme Ortho Spring Reflex Foam Orthopaedic Extra Firm Mattress
  • Excellent price
  • Orthopaedic support
  • Made in the UK
  • Hand tufted for durability
  • Free shipping

Price & Reviews

This is the firmest mattress you can buy, it’s got the traditional open spring technology inside to keep you in place and it’s 25cm deep so you certainly don’t feel the bed frame underneath.

The handtufts are in place to improve durability of the mattress, providing you with plenty of support night after night for years to come which is reflected in the 5-year guarantee you get from the mattress.

If you click the above Price & Reviews link you can also order direct from happy beds for the cheapest price and you get free delivery!

An ideal choice for back and front sleepers because of the extra firmness, but if you want an extra firm mattress and you’re a side sleeper then by all means go ahead. Whatever makes you comfortable.

Overall: A superb choice, free delivery and bargain price make this the best value, as well as it being incredibly firm.

5. Best Firm Memory Foam Mattress – Dormeo Octaspring 5500 Mattress

 Dormeo Octaspring 5500 Mattress
  • Foam octasprings inside
  • Orthopaedic support
  • washable cover
  • Hypoallergenic
  • 20-year warranty

Firmness: Firm

Price & Reviews

So, what are Octasprings? Well, they are honeycomb-shaped springs made of foam that provide the support of memory foam while having far superior breathability because as you move air gets sucked and blown through the mattress.

The result is a memory foam mattress that’s much cooler than most others, and while foam tends to have a lot of different firmnesses this one is a nice firm feel keeping you supported and your back happy. Especially because of the regular foam comfort layer you get at the top of this mattress.

A great choice for couples because memory foam gives you motion isolation that stops you feeling your partners movements allowing you to sleep deeper for longer and wake up more rested.

And you can sleep soundly for many nights to come thanks to the 15-year warranty, not many companies offer that level of longevity so it’s a great value purchase even with the higher price tag.

Dormeo Octaspring mattress review

Sleeping Positions and Firmer Mattresses

Firm mattresses are good for most type of sleepers, but let’s break it down by which side you sleep on so you can find out what will be best for you.

Stomach Sleepers – If you’re a front sleeper you will absolutely be better off with a firmer mattress, it will prevent your hips sinking down too deep putting pressure on your neck and ruining your spinal alignment so you wake up with a bad back. I’ve got more mattress recommendations for stomach sleepers here but in general, you’ll get on great with a firmer mattress.

Back Sleepers – Good news is you’ll also do absolutely great on a firmer mattress, your back gets kept nice and straight while sinking in just enough to be really comfortable. With the right mattress you get great pressure relief to your pressure points in your back that can start to suffer no an old mattress. More back sleeper mattresses here.

Side Sleepers – Now side sleepers are a little more tricky, a firm mattress can be too much for side sleepers and cause some pain in the shoulder, you’d be better off with a medium-firm mattress for that little bit more sink for your shoulders. But if you’re a side sleeper and love a firm mattress don’t let me stop you, whatever’s comfortable! More on side sleeper mattresses.

BEST FIRM MATTRESS MATERIAL

Getting the right material in your mattress is a great place to start, it’s the foundation of the mattress and the base of your sleep. But there are a few different types to choose from and it can get a bit confusing so let’s take a look at the differences between the materials.

MEMORY FOAM

Normally I’m a huge fan of memory foam, it’s super comfortable and offers great back support. But the problem is, memory foam isn’t firm! It’s naturally designed to soften and mould around you so will never give you the truly firm feel you’ve been looking for.

The only time you might find memory foam in a firm mattress is if it’s in a hybrid mattress. This is a combination of both memory foam and springs, so if a small layer of memory foam is layered on top it can add some back support while staying firm. Similar to putting a memory foam mattress topper on top.

SPRING

Now spring mattresses are much better suited for what we need. But within the world of spring mattresses, we have two types.

POCKET SPRUNG

Pocket sprung mattresses are the most comfortable, each spring is sewn into its own pocket so they can move independent of each other, that way it sinks where it needs to giving you maximum support and a superbly comfortable bed.

The main difference between one pocket sprung mattress and another is the spring count. That’s how many springs are in a king size of the mattress. More springs is generally better because it means your weight is more evenly distributed and the bed can form to your shape better. The ideal number of springs is usually from 1000-2000, Less than that and you’ll be uncomfortable while more won’t cause a problem, it’s just a lot more money for how much comfier the bed will actually feel.

OPEN-COIL SPRINGS

Open-coil springs are a big grid of springs, they aren’t as comfortable as their pocket spring counterparts but they have the advantage of being much cheaper. So a great budget alternative but be aware it’s not luxury comfort. Just because the mattress is firm doesn’t mean it can’t be comfortable!

Of the two, pocket sprung is definitely the way to go.

LATEX

Last but not least, you have latex mattresses! Latex mattresses have a similar feel to memory foam but they have a lot more bounce in them. This resistance gives them a great firm feel.

Latex is an excellent choice if you’re looking for a firm mattress to help with back problems, plus it’s eco-friendly because the latex is harvested from rubber trees which get replanted after.

So for most people the best material will either be latex or pocket sprung.

F.A.Q

Is a firm mattress good for a bad back?

Yes and no, there is no scientific studies that have shown a firm mattress is better for your back. But a lot of orthopaedic mattresses, which are designed to help a bad back, are also firm. It will be very rare to find a softer mattress that’s got orthopaedic support of any kind so this suggests a firm mattress is better for your back. But it might be that you need orthopaedic support rather than just a firm mattress.

If you have back problems talk to your doctor but if you have and they recommended a firm mattress then I hope this guide helped. Or you can check out the other article I have on mattresses for a bad back

Is a firm mattress good for side sleepers?

It’s not the usual recommendation, generally, you’ll want a medium-firm mattress at most so your shoulders and hips can sink deep enough to keep your spine aligned and your pressure points relaxed.

Can a firm mattress cause hip pain?

It can indeed, in the same way, a soft mattress can, it can cause your body to become unaligned and discomfort and pain can start to arise. I’ve got hip pain mattresses specifically here.

Can a mattress be too firm?

Not really, some people swear by sleeping on the floor with just a thin mat underneath them and they get on fine. But for your needs, it might get too firm, but unless you have a pre-existing condition that will get agrevated you’ll likely get on fine.

Other Firm mattresses Reviewed

Extra Firm Mattresses

The highest firmness level you can get but sometimes hard to find, so here are a selection of the best extra firm mattresses here in the UK.

Hyder Backcare Ultimate 2000 Mattress

 Hyder Backcare Ultimate 2000 Mattress
  • Orthopaedic Support
  • Natural wool filling
  • made in the UK
  • 5-year guarantee

Firmness: Extra-Firm

Price & Reviews

One of the firmest mattresses available made from high-quality pocket springs and a deep layer of wool to keep your body temperature steady for a comfortable night’s sleep.

It’s also flippable so you can flip it over, with the seasons if it’s a slat bed or twice a year otherwise, to freshen it up and reveal a new firm side that you can sleep on. Which is made easier with the turning handles you have stitched into the sides of the mattress.

26 cm deep is nice and big so it’s great for any body type even if you’re heavier you can still get some great support and feel the firmness of the mattress.

A nice traditional feel of extra firm mattress made in the UK to the highest quality.

Sleepeezee Ultrafirm 1600 Pocket Mattress

 Sleepeezee Ultrafirm 1600 Pocket Mattress

  • 60-night sleep trial
  • Orthopaedic support
  • Cotton FIllings
  • Hypoallergenic
  • 5-year guarantee

Firmness: Extra Firm

Sizes: Single, double, king, super king size

Price & Reviews

1600 pocket springs combine with a blend of cotton and polyester fillings to make this a very firm mattress. The cotton also works with air vents in the side to provide greater airflow and allow your body temperature to stay steady preventing overheating or night sweats.

Apart from that, it ticks all the right boxes, a 60-night sleep trial so you can test it out and make sure it’s firm enough for you and it’s hypoallergenic for a fresher night’s sleep. Plus it’s made in the UK and had a 5-year guarantee.

Ruby Ortho Extra Firm Mattress

  • Standard Springs
  • Turnable
  • Free delivery
  • 26 cm deep
  • 5-year warranty

Firmness: Extra-firm

Price & Reviews

The standard springs you find in this mattress give it a very traditional feel, much more like an old fashioned firm mattress, bouncy yet comfortable.

And you get free 24-hour delivery to have you sleeping on your new mattress in no time at all. Why not treat yourself and dedicate tomorrow to getting a good night’s sleep.

Rest Assured Adleborough 1400 Pocket Ortho Mattress

  • Orthopaedic support
  • Cotton fillings
  • 26 cm deep
  • 5-year Guarantee

Firmness: Extra-firm

Price & Reviews

Rest Assured are actually a sub-brand of the mattress company we all know and love, Silentnight!

This mattress is packed full of organic cotton to give it the extra firm support you’re looking for. Plus the cotton works to give you orthopaedic support that your back will thank you for.

Mammoth Shine Essential Extra Firm Mattress

  • Medical grade foam
  • Cooling Tencel cover
  • Pressure Relieving
  • 10-year warranty

Firmness: Extra Firm

Price & Reviews

This is a superb choice if you’re dealing with a bad back, medical-grade foam works to give your back ample support relieving pressure and allowing you to really relax.

It’s hypoallergenic for a clean sleep experience and it comes with a 10-year warranty for peace of mind while you sleep. And while the foam is extra firm you still get a really comfy bed with a nice amount of cushioning.

Firm Mattresses

Dunlopillo Orchid Latex Mattress

Dunlopillo Orchid Latex Mattress

  • 8-year Guarantee
  • Hypoallergenic
  • Premium Latex Filling

Firmness: Firm

PRICE & REVIEWS

Latex is an excellent choice of filling for a mattress. It contours to the body giving you a great level of support and comfort while still being firm to lie on.

It is a premium product but well worth the price, the knitted cover is breathable keeping you cool at night while latex is naturally hypoallergenic so your kept dust mite and allergen-free every night.

The latex is then split into seven zones of varying firmness giving you more support in your shoulders and hips then less in your head and feet for a balanced feel across your whole body.

And it has an 8-year guarantee so a worthy investment that will easily last you a decade.

Overall, while not the normal type of mattress to be firm it’s a fantastic choice of firm mattress that will have you sleeping comfortably for many years to come.

Sealy Posturepedic Ruby Ortho Mattress

  • Damask Cover
  • PostureTech Zero Deflection Springs
  • Ideal for heavy people
  • Orthopaedic support
  • 5-year guarantee

Firmness: Firm

Price & Reviews

The Posture Tech Zero Deflection Springs are designed with a special hinge that takes weight and movement into consideration allowing for a balanced sleep surface that’s ideal for heavier people.

Plus 23 cm deep will fit nicely on any bed base making it an ideal firmer bed.

Rest Assured Boxgrove 1400 Pocket Natural Mattressbox

  • Silk and wool fillings
  • Air vents in side for cooling
  • 27 cm deep
  • 5-year guarantee

Firmness: Firm

Price & Reviews

Silk and wool work together nicely to provide a cushioned feel while retaining the firmer feel of the mattress. Pocket springs also make it a good choice for couples as there will be minimal motion transfer across the bed.

Wool also has great temperate regulating properties that work to keep you cool through the night so you get a great night’s sleep.

You need to rotate this mattress with the seasons but it’s got handles stitched into the side to make this easier.

A great firm innerspring mattress.

Bed Butler Pocket Royal Comfort 3000 Mattress

  • Silk, wool, and cashmere fillings
  • High spring count for added comfort
  • Made in the UK
  • 5-year Guarantee

Firmness: Firm

Price & Reviews

There are various firmness levels available for this mattress but you’ll obviously want to choose the Firm option.

Aside from that, you’ve got a really high 3000 spring count which provides a ton of good support to your back and joints while also being firm but comfortable. The higher the better is generally the rule when it comes to pocket springs.

A combination of natural fillings and white polyester fillings provide a durable mattress with plenty of longevity that will have you supported and comfortable for many years to come.

FINAL THOUGHTS ON THE BEST FIRM MATTRESS

And there we have it! I hope you found something useful in this article and more importantly I hope you found the product you were looking for! If you have any questions about a firm mattress then ask them below in the comments.

RELATED READING

Best Memory Foam Mattress

Best Medium Mattress

Best Soft Mattress

Best mattresses in the UK

Comments (8)

  • Vincent
    November 29, 2017 at 9:35 am

    Hi DozyOwl

    Would like your feedback between the 1500 spring hybrid vs the ultimate backcare in terms of firmness.

    I’m looking for a mattress that is very firm and the above two falls within my budget. I would assume the ultimate backcare is the better option as it has more pocket springs?
    Many Thanks

    • thedozyowl
      November 29, 2017 at 2:44 pm

      Hi Vincent,

      Great question! Glad you’ve got a couple you like. Yes you’re right the Ultimate backcare is the better option, more springs and it’s slightly thinner so it’ll be the more comfortable and firmer of the two.

  • Light sleeper
    March 10, 2018 at 2:36 pm

    Hi this is a great guide,

    Do you know if I can get any of these mattresses in the european bedside 160×200?

    Thanks!!

    • Kieran
      March 12, 2018 at 10:06 am

      Hi! Unfortunately, they don’t come in a European double. If you need the European sizes your best bet is likely Ikea. Good luck!

  • Lucy
    July 19, 2019 at 10:04 am

    I know I shouldn’t, but I read in bed quite a lot. I’m looking for a seriously firm mattress so my bum/back don’t sag when sitting reading. I’m happy to put a layer of egg-box foam on top for a bit of softness under hips etc when sleeping, this has worked well for me in the past. What can you suggest please. When I’ve visited various bed outlets they show me what they consider extra firm mattresses but they actually aren’t. Many thanks

    • Kieran
      July 29, 2019 at 3:52 pm

      Entirely the opposite! You should definitely read in bed! It’s my number 1 sleep tip that helps your eyes relax and helps you fall asleep.

      Anyway, I’m not sure if I can help with a mattress that firm, it’s very specialist so if you’ve gone into a bed outlet and they’ve shown you their firmest mattresses and they weren’t right I’m not sure I’d know of anything firmer. But, you could try get a firm chair in your bedroom and you could sit on it under a blanket in your pyjamas then get into bed when you’ve finished reading? Sorry I couldn’t be more help.

  • Colin smith
    April 14, 2021 at 10:55 am

    Hi
    Have recently bought a Nectar mattress 3 weeks ago and my back is getting sorer in the mornings
    Have always had some problems but not as bad as this in the mornings could you recommend a mattress to try defy on the firm side to help with my lower back pain and neck
    Cheers colin

    • Alexandru Ion
      April 15, 2021 at 7:42 pm

      Hi Colin,

      I sleep on a Simba at home. You may want to try that as well? It’s no the firmest of them all, but I like it. The other option is to go for our #1 option the Relyon.

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