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Your guide to mattress types


The most common types of mattresses explained

The science of sleep has come a long way since our ancestors first made their beds from piles of reeds and rushes.

Today we can choose from a wide selection of different mattress types, each of which has unique advantages.

At the Sleep Republic we have decades of experience in designing and making mattresses, and we’ve learned how to  bring all the best types together into one perfect hybrid mattress, providing the very best sleep experience possible.

Types of mattresses

Coil Mattresses

coil mattress

Coil mattresses have been around for over 100 years, and they are still widely used today because they’re cheap and weigh less than other mattress types.

While coil mattresses may be fine for smaller children, they tend to sag under adults and are not very comfortable or supportive.

The coil springs all move together inside the mattress, so any tossing and turning on one side of the bed is sure to disturb a sleeping partner on the other.

Pocket spring mattresses

Pocket spring mattresses contain lots of separate springs that can move independently, adjusting to your sleeping position and and minimising partner disturbance.

Pocket springs can also be tailored to provide different levels of support in different parts of the bed for maximum comfort.

A good general rule of thumb is to choose a pocket spring mattress that contains 1000 springs or more – anything below that is considered low quality.

Polyfoam mattresses

Polyurethane foam mattresses (also known as polyfoam) are the most common type of foam mattress.

They are cheap and light but they provide poor support, are not very comfortable and are not well ventilated, allowing little airflow around the body.

Polyurethane foam also breaks down quickly, so polyfoam mattresses don’t last very long.

Natural latex foam mattresses

Natural latex comes from the sap of a rubber tree.

Latex foam’s potential for bedding was discovered in the 1930s, when latex mattresses offered new levels of comfort and pressure relief.

Natural and renewable, latex provides very good support and ample air flow and cooling, because it contains thousands of tiny ventilation holes.

Memory foam mattresses

Memory foam mattress

Memory foam is an innovative product developed by NASA. It softens in response to body heat, absorbing your weight as you sink in but then recovering its original shape afterwards.

Memory foam mattresses are great for people suffering back pain and postural problems because they are so supportive and because they become warm, which can help to relieve sore joints.

However too much memory foam can feel very solid and dense, leaving a sleeper feeling “encased”.

Gel-infused memory foam mattresses

Memory foam’s heat-retaining properties can also be a disadvantage, causing some sleepers to overheat.

Gel-infused memory foam eliminates this problem thanks to special gel particles that disperse trapped heat.

This enables gel-infused memory foam mattresses to stabilise temperatures within the bed while also speeding up spring-back time, making the mattress feel softer.

Hybrid mattresses

Hybrid mattresses are designed to combine the advantages of all the best mattress types in one bed.

For example, at the Sleep Republic our hybrid mattresses consist of:

  • A base layer of thousands of high-density pocket springs (2250 springs in our king size mattress). This provides tailored levels of support in five different body zones – head and shoulders, back, hips, legs and feet – while eliminating partner disturbance.
  • A layer of natural latex, providing outstanding support and recovery as well as great air flow and cooling thanks to latex’s thousands of ventilation holes.
  • A top layer of gel-infused memory foam for the ultimate in pressure relief, body contouring and temperature stability.
  • A covering created from cashmere knitted fabric, which we selected because it is a natural fabric that is soft to the touch yet extremely durable.

NB: Some mattress foams may include unpleasant chemicals such as formaldehyde, mercury, lead and ozone depleters, but at the Sleep Republic all our mattresses are CertiPUR-US® certified to contain only foams that feel good and you can feel good about.

Try a hybrid mattress for free

Woman sleeping on mattress

At the Sleep Republic we’re confident our specially designed hybrid mattresses provide the perfect sleep experience.

But don’t just take our word for it. Read the hundreds of independently verified reviews from our customers on our website, and then try a Sleep Republic mattress free for 100 nights and find out for yourself how comfortable a hybrid mattress can be.

We offer free same-day delivery for orders received before midday in most major metropolitan areas, and we’ll deliver your mattress anywhere in Australia provided we can reach you.

And you can buy now from Sleep Republic and pay later with Zip Pay and Afterpay.

Need help, or have a question about mattress types? Call us on 1800 270 871, email us on, chat with us online or see our FAQs