A common misconception in the mattress world is that a firmer mattress is inherently better. But the idea that a firmer mattress offers more support is untrue. For example, try sleeping on your floor. The key to finding the most comfortable bed for you is searching for something that offers an even balance of comfort and support; so if you’re looking for the best soft mattress, you have options.Best Soft Mattress: 30-Second SummaryOur Recommendation: The Amerisleep AS4 is our recommendation for the best soft mattress you can buy. We like Amerisleep in general because they’ve been around for almost a decade. In their beds, they use Bio-Pur®, a plant-based memory foam to provide comfort and support. In this bed, they use 4 inches of cushioning Bio-Pur® to create a cloud-like sleep experience. Plus, they offer a 100-night sleep trial and a 20-year warranty with each of their beds, allowing you to shop with confidence.Best Soft Mattresses of 2021BrandMattressTypeSleep Trial & WarrantyPrice (Queen)Amerisleep AS4Memory Foam100 Nights & 20 Years$1259Amerisleep AS5Memory Foam100 Nights & 20 Years$1539Amerisleep AS5 HybridHybrid100 Nights & 20 Years$1679ZomaMemory Foam100 Nights & 10 Years$699Zoma HybridHybrid100 Nights & 10 Years$999VayaAll-Foam100 Nights & 10 Years$599Finding the Best Soft MattressBecause of advances in foam technology in the past decade, many of the best soft mattresses are available from online retailers. Foam mattresses can be easily compressed and shipped, and many major online retailers offer lengthy trials and help with shipping if you want to return the item. By reading bed-in-a-box reviews you can see online retailers can offer high-quality products at a fraction of the price.Here are the top six soft mattresses.1. Amerisleep AS4Our Editors’ recommended soft mattress is Amerisleep’s AS4. We like Amerisleep because they make only five mattresses and each model ranges in firmness, so it’s pretty easy to choose which one of their mattresses you’re best suited for. Plus, they state on their website who each of their models is good for— whether it be back, side, or combination sleepers. Additionally, they use state-of-the-art materials in their beds to deliver healthy, restful sleep.Their AS4 contains 4 inches of Bio-Pur®, so it should be perfect for people looking for a soft, but supportive bed.Let’s break down the layers of this mattress.For starters, Amerisleep uses a soft, breathable fabric to cover their beds. This airy fabric helps to keep air flowing throughout the mattress and prevents body heat from building up.The top layer is 4 inches of Bio-Pur®, Amerisleep’s plant-based memory foam. They design this foam to be more breathable than traditional memory foam, so it works in conjunction with the breathable cover to keep you cool and comfortable while you sleep.Most memory foam mattress brands hesitate to use more than 2 or 3 inches of memory foam in their bed due to the risk of heat retention. However, because Amerisleep uses plant-based foams, they’re able to offer more memory foam without the risk of trapping heat. The layer of Bio-Pur® offers a cushioning, cradling feel when you lay down on this bed.Below those two layers lies a layer of their HIVE® technology, a zoned support layer. HIVE® technology promotes your spine’s natural curvature and reduces pressure points, so it contributes to pain-free sleep. The last layer of the AS4 is their sturdy core foam, in place to offer shape and support to the layers and sleeper above.When you shop with Amerisleep, they offer a 100-night risk-free sleep trial to test their beds out. If you’re unhappy with it, you have the option to exchange for a different model, so you could try another one of their soft beds, or you can return it for a full refund; but we’re confident you’re bound to find a good match with this brand.2. Amerisleep AS5Amerisleep’s AS5 is our Editors recommended soft mattress for heavy sleepers. Though the AS5 is advertised as Amerisleep’s softest mattress, it contains a responsive layer none of their other beds do, which can actually make it feel more firm than the AS4 for petite sleepers.If you weigh over 250 pounds and want a soft mattress, choose their AS5. However, if you’re between 130-250 pounds, you’re better suited to their AS4.Let’s talk about the construction of the AS5.The AS5 contains all of the same great layers the AS4 did, but with the addition of Active Flex, a latex-like layer.The first layer is 3 inches of Bio-Pur® to offer cushioning comfort and relieve aches and pains. Below the layer of Bio-Pur® is the layer of Active Flex, a poly-foam they designed to be responsive and bouncy like latex. They put this layer in their AS5 to keep you suspended in the mattress and prevent your spine from sinking too far in the bed, this promotes healthy sleep positions and creates a comfortable sleep surface.Then, is a thin layer of Affinity with HIVE® technology to offer zoned support and promote healthy sleep styles. Last but not least is their Bio-Core® support foam.3. Amerisleep AS5 HybridThe last Amerisleep mattress on our list is the AS5 Hybrid. Amerisleep offers hybrid counterparts for their AS2, AS3, and AS5 models, so if you’re looking for a soft but bouncy bed, the AS5 Hybrid is perfect for you.The AS5 Hybrid contains many of the same sleep-promoting layers as the memory foam AS5; however, this bed has pocketed coils instead of Bio-Core®. The AS5 Hybrid does not contain Affinity foam with HIVE®, either, but sleepers receive targeted support from the pocketed coil layer, instead.The pocketed coils in this mattress are fashioned to offer full-body support. Under your hips and shoulders, these coils have more give to allow for better pressure relief. These coils offer firmer support under your torso to keep your spine lifted in neutral alignment.Like the all-foam AS5, the AS5 Hybrid contains 3 inches of Bio-Pur® and 2 inches of Active Flex. Below the coil layer, is a thin layer of foam for added base support. Amerisleep also includes a firm perimeter of foam around the pocketed coil layer to improve this bed’s edge support.Amerisleep’s AS5 Hybrid comes with a 100-night sleep trial and a 20-year warranty, like their memory foam mattresses.4. Zoma MattressThe Zoma Mattress is the only gel memory foam mattress on our list, and at $699 for a queen, it’s an incredible value. We’re fans of the Zoma brand because they designed their bed with recovery in mind, so it helps you get the most out of your time spent sleeping. It incorporates cooling gels and zoned support technologies to help you wake up feeling refreshed every morning.The Zoma Mattress is medium in firmness, but it’s on the softer side of medium, and reviews of the bed state it feels notably cushioning and soft. This bed has three layers all designed to promote your sleep in a different way. Let’s talk about its construction.The first layer of the Zoma Mattress is 2 inches of gel memory foam with Triangulex™ technology. The cooling gels in this layer wick away body heat to prevent night sweats, this is especially useful if you’re a hot sleeper or you wake up with night sweats.The Triangulex™ technology within this layer offers dynamic full-body support to prevent any discomfort when you’re climbing out of bed in the morning. Triangulex™ contains hundreds of triangle-shaped cutouts to support different parts of your body in different ways.For example, these cutouts are placed under your hips and shoulders to allow for deeper compression and better pressure relief. Under your torso, though, Triangulex™ is firmer to prevent your spine from sinking into the bed.Triangulex’s™ design encourages healthy spinal alignment and is a great feature for anybody seeking a top-rated mattress for back pain relief.The second layer of the mattress is responsive Reactiv™ foam. Reactiv™ gives the bed a bit of bounce, so it prevents you from sinking through the memory foam layer and bottoming out on the firm core of the bed. Reactiv™ also offers some pressure relief to further prevent pain points.The base layer of the Zoma Mattress is 7 inches of Support+, a durable poly-foam. Support+ prevents sagging and wear and tear so you can get comfortable sleep for years to come. This layer also contributes to even weight distribution, so it helps you feel weightless as you sleep.The Zoma Mattress comes with a 100-night sleep trial, a 10-year warranty, free shipping, and free returns.5. Zoma HybridThe design of a Zoma Hybrid balances softness with support. The bed features two top foam layers that provide plush cushioning, targeted back support, motion isolation, and pressure relief. The coil support core underneath maintains a cool sleep surface with its airy bounce, while promoting neutral spine alignment.Because of its coil support, a Zoma Hybrid can feel a touch firmer than the classic Zoma Mattress, but it still has a medium feel overall. It’s an excellent bed for side, combination, and back sleepers.The first layer is 2 inches of gel memory foam, a material that can mold to you for full-body support and cushion. The gels disperse heat, preventing you from waking early in a sweat.The top layer also contains hundreds of segmented cutouts to increase cushioning in the mattress’s head and foot, enabling the bed to contour closer for more pressure relief. Since the middle of this layer is solid, it supports the lower back by preventing excess sinking.Underneath the gel foam is a 2-inch layer of Reactiv™ foam, a material that limits the sinkage that can cause entrapment or spinal misalignment. Thanks to Reactiv™ foam, you’re more likely to wake up feeling refreshed and ready to face the day.Seven inches of bouncy pocketed coils hold you and the mattress’s top layers up as you sleep. The fabric casing around each coil limits motion transfer, so you won’t disturb a partner’s rest when you toss and turn (or vice versa). The coils rest on an inch-thick, sturdy foam base to prevent sagging.Stiff foams run around the bed’s perimeter for edge support. Edge support is an excellent feature to have if you have a condition that restricts movement, such as arthritis.Every Zoma Hybrid includes a 100-night sleep trial and a 10-year warranty.6. VayaThe last mattress on our list is the Vaya, a budget-friendly all-foam mattress fit for people of all sleep styles. We love this mattress because it’s not only soft, it’s responsive, too, so it keeps you lifted in the mattress and prevents uncomfortable sinkage. Whether you’re a stomach, back, or side sleeper, the Vaya can help you get a comfortable sleep. The Vaya is labeled as medium in firmness because it is responsive enough to keep you lifted, but its layers offer plenty of cushioning comfort. All in all, the bed has two layers and stands 12 inches tall.The first layer of the Vaya is 3 inches of Vaya Foam. Vaya Foam doesn’t contour to your body as closely as memory foam, so it doesn’t cause you to feel sinking or “stuck” in the bed, but it relieves pressure points and distributes your weight across the mattress. The thickness of this layer is perfect for side sleeping, too, as it allows the hips and shoulders to sink enough to prevent aches and pains.We also like this mattress because it’s made with breathable foams, so you won’t have to worry about heat retention or night sweats on the Vaya.The core layer of the Vaya is 9 inches of durable base foam designed to reinforce the sleeper above and prevent sagging. Vaya also backs their mattress with a 10-year warranty, helping you get the most for your money.Vaya is sold online only and comes with a 100-night sleep trial, free shipping, and free returns.Benefits of a Soft MattressWhen you don’t get enough of the right kind of sleep, you are more likely to spend your days feeling foggy and exhausted. You may have a hard time thinking clearly, reacting quickly, or making decisions; you’ll have a harder time remembering important things; you’ll be easily distracted, and you’re more likely to feel stressed and irritable. On a short-term basis, these problems can be uncomfortable; on a long-term basis, however, they can turn into more significant health issues.Some studies have linked long-term sleep deprivation to other chronic or life-threatening health conditions.CancerHeart diseaseStrokeBone lossDepressionHigh blood pressureAlthough many insist that firm mattresses are the best, this is far from accurate. The benefits you get from your mattress can vary greatly, depending on what your physical needs are and what position you sleep in. People who may benefit more from soft mattresses include the following:Do you sleep on your side? Sleeping on your side is the most common position, according to sleep science. Per a United Kingdom sleep study, about 70 percent of people sleep on their side for most of the night. While firm mattresses support the curve of the back in people who sleep on their backs or stomachs, a hard mattress can be rough on the spine’s natural curves when you sleep on your side. In contrast, soft mattresses let the hips and shoulders sink into more natural alignment, allowing the body to relax into proper support.Do you have a low body mass index (BMI)? People who have a BMI of 18.5 or lower, which is considered underweight, may require an extra cushion to support their frames. This is especially true for people who are underweight due to a medical issue, even if they have healed from it. Being underweight contributes to joint pain and feeling cold. Sleeping on a softer mattress allows for body heat to stay close to the body, greatly reducing the impact on joints and muscles.Do you experience sleep apnea? Sleep apnea is a serious medical condition, primarily impacting the quality of sleep, which in turn raises stress, blood pressure, and heart rate, and lowers cognition, learning, and memory abilities. As much as 20 percent of American adults suffer from sleep apnea but do not know it. One recommended way to avoid sleep apnea is by sleeping on your side, which may mean finding a soft mattress to support your body and to help you remain in that position for much of the night.Different Mattress TypesAs new types of materials are created and tested, mattresses seem to be made of dozens of special foams, lattice or comb structures, and fabrics. All of these mattress materials can impact the longevity, quality, and softness of your mattress.Innerspring MattressSteel coils create the spring-based support system inside this type of mattress. Coil or spring mattresses are associated with being firm or very firm mattresses since they give a little and do not have as much padding as foam mattresses. However, the number, gauge or size, and design of the coils can vary by the mattress, creating different sensations of firmness versus give.Between 600 and 1,000 coils will make a firmer mattress. However, fewer springs may lead to wearing out over time. While this leads to a mattress with more give and a sensation of more softness at first, you may end up being poked by springs as the top layers of upholstery lose their cushion.Pillow-top MattressRegardless of what the interior of the mattress consists of, this type of mattress will typically feel softer because of the additional layers of padding and upholstery on top. There are a variety of foam and fiber materials used to make this layer, and some may feel plusher or more pillow-like than others.Hybrid MattressThis may be a combination of coil supports and foam mattress – often polyurethane, memory foam, or latex. There may be a layer of gel or honeycombing to create more softness or a layer of thicker, firmer foam to add more structure. For people transitioning from a very hard or firm mattress in search of a soft mattress, the hybrid mattress may be a good in-between step while still providing enough give for the body’s curves.Specialty Foam MattressThis approach to mattresses is becoming increasingly popular with internet mattress retailers since they are easy to pack tight and ship to customers in smaller bags. There may be several different types of foam layered on top of one another for different levels of heat dissipation and comfort. Typically, these will conform to your body’s shape more easily, cradling your back, legs, shoulders, and head in a comfortable, hammock-like way.Gel Memory Foam MattressThis is a type of foam mattress, but gel foam is sprayed between other foam or upholstery layers to create levels of softness or firmness. The foam may contour to the sleeper’s body, creating a sensation of softness while still providing support. Gel foam mattresses tend to allow for better heat dissipation.Memory Foam MattressAlso called viscoelastic mattresses, memory foam mattresses are made from high-density polyurethane, contouring closely to the person’s body, ideally without too much give. Foam density can be adjusted for people who want firmer mattresses.Latex MattressLike other types of foam, these mattresses use latex-based foam to create the support structures in the mattress.Airbeds and WaterbedsWaterbeds aren’t as common as they used to be, and air mattresses are usually considered temporary sleep solutions for guests or camping. Both these types of mattresses can be firmer or softer, depending on how much they are filled and how thick the plastic part of the mattress is. The true benefit of both these beds is that they are easily adjustable for firmness compared to other mattresses that must be replaced.Soft mattresses tend to have a plush layer added on top with a stronger or firmer foam core and firm base – perhaps made from foam or using coils or springs in older mattresses. This arrangement of three primary layers allows for maximum compression, creating true softness.What Sleeping Positions are Best for Soft Mattresses?Soft mattresses are cushioning and comfortable, but they’re not ideal for all sleep styles. Side and back sleepers can get away with snoozing on a soft bed, but stomach sleepers likely cannot.Side sleepers are best suited for soft beds because they’re cushioning enough to alleviate pressure in the shoulders and hips, preventing pain points. Back sleepers can be comfortable on soft mattresses, as long as the bed offers adequate support to prevent you from sinking too far in the mattress.Stomach sleepers are almost never fit for soft beds because they cannot offer enough spinal support to prevent lower back pain. Commonly, stomach sleepers experience lower back pain because their beds are not supportive enough to hold their midsection in line with the rest of their body, resulting in an overextension of the spine.Mattress Material and LifespanThe lifespan of the material is also an important consideration. Although sleep specialists and mattress manufacturers tend to recommend changing your mattress every 7 to 10 years, the actual material your mattress is made of can determine how long you should wait. Different materials have different lifespans.Latex lasts about 12 years.Memory foam and hybrid mattresses both last about 10 years.Innerspring mattresses last around 8 years.Pillow top mattresses last around 6 years.The quality of these materials can also dramatically impact lifespan. However, too often, soft mattresses are considered to have shorter lifespans than firmer mattresses. This may be due to the sinking effect: soft mattresses start out cradling the body, allowing a lot of sink into the mattress, but, over time, sagging can become uncomfortable.However, it is important to note that older models of mattresses – both the innerspring and pillow top varieties – last less than a decade, while newer materials and certain types of foam tend to last longer. A more modern approach to a soft mattress, made from foam, could be a great solution to the problem of a perceived shorter lifespan.Frequently Asked QuestionsIs a soft mattress good?A soft mattress can be an excellent choice for some sleepers, but an uncomfortable bed for others. If you’re a petite sleeper or a side sleeper, a soft mattress can be just what you need for a good night’s sleep. However, if you’re a back sleeper, stomach sleeper, or a heavy sleeper, you might wake up with a bad back because your soft mattress doesn’t provide the support you need.That said, there are a few soft mattresses that have extra support features, such as responsive transition layers or targeted back support. These soft yet supportive mattresses are better suited for a wide range of sleepers.How do I know if my mattress is too soft?One way is to consider how you feel when you lie down on your mattress. Do you feel cushioned yet supported by a mattress that molds to your every curve? If so, your mattress might have the right mix of softness and support. However, if you feel like the heavier parts of your body are sinking into too deep, the mattress might not provide the lift needed for a healthy spine alignment.You can also see how you feel when you wake up. If you have aches and pains when you first get out of bed, it may signify that your mattress isn’t providing a restorative night of sleep.Is it better to sleep on a hard or soft mattress?Both of these firmnesses can suit different types of sleepers. And some sleepers benefit most when they sleep on a medium-feel mattress, such as combination sleepers or heavier side sleepers.If you’re a smaller person or a side sleeper, a softer mattress is a good choice. Back sleepers, stomach sleepers, and heavy people usually feel more comfortable on a firmer mattress.What can I do if my mattress is too soft?Your options depend on how old your mattress is. If you buy a new mattress and find that it’s too soft, you may be able to return it during your sleep trial.However, if your mattress has grown excessively soft with age, you will probably need to replace it with a new one. If you’re not ready to buy a new mattress, a firm mattress topper may help you stretch out your mattress’s use.Why are hotel mattresses so comfortable?A hotel mattress often feels luxurious because it’s more than just a mattress. Hotels may add toppers for an improved feel, breathable and clean bedding for you to wrap yourself up in, and plenty of supportive yet plush pillows.There may also be a psychological reason, as well. Many of us associate hotel beds with the joys of being on vacation, so we find them comfortable because we link them to rest and relaxation.Are You Ready to Buy Your Next Bed?If you’re in the market for a new bed and prefer a plush feel mattress, there are a wide variety of beds to consider. When pinpointing the best mattress for your sleep needs, consider your body type, preferred mattress type, sleep style, and budget. Remember, use sleep trials to your advantage during your search. These give you the chance to test the bed out at home and see how the mattress feels, allowing you to shop in confidence.We hope this guide has helped steer you towards your next mattress. If you’re still interested in learning about other brands or mattress types, check out our other online mattress guides.This article is for informational purposes and should not replace advice from your doctor or other medical professional.