Memory Foam Mattress – Pros and Cons (Should you buy it?)

Photo of author
ReviewsWorthy Team is reader-supported. As an Amazon affiliate, we earn from qualifying purchases.

Memory foam is also known as viscoelastic foam is a product of polyurethane foam. Memory foam mattress helps in conforming to body contours to provide support and restful sleep. Density and firmness of a memory foam mattress are factors that distinguish one product or brand from another.

Pros of a Memory Foam Mattresses

Memory foam mattresses have been around for many years and are the most purchased for the following reasons.

Memory foam adapts to the body and relieves pressure points

The chief reason memory foam mattresses are so popular is due to their ability to mold to different body shapes and release any pressure during rest. This gives memory foam the ability to align the spine and promote rest and subsequent good health.

In response to heat and body weight, memory foam will make changes necessary to promote good posture and prevent back problems. Many people who switch to a good quality memory foam mattress, report complete relief from back problems.

Memory foam rightly known as viscoelastic, not only nestles the sleeper but also has the ability to push back effectively from being pressured. This is how memory foam can provide for support and prevent the body from sinking in too much.

Memory foam can provide for both comfort and support

The topmost layer of a memory foam mattress will react to body heat provide a pillow top comfort feel. However, the lower levels of the mattress that are away from pressure will remain firm and provide support.

The dual action of memory foam is great for people who need the support of the mattress for health reasons but also prefer soft plush comfort. Memory foam provides for comfort along with support more than any other type of material. This could also prevent the need for a mattress topper and reduce overall costs.

Memory foam is the best for couples as it lessens motion transfer

Memory foam has a conforming cellular structure and lower bounce level in comparison to latex, innerspring, airbeds, waterbeds, and other materials. This in addition to its ability to absorb energy, contributes to motion isolation and uninterrupted sleep.

This is especially helpful for couples when one partner tosses and turns memory foam will ensure the other doesn’t feel movement or disturbance. This is valuable for heavier people and couples with different sleep patterns and timetables.

Memory foam provides for a healthy sleep surface

Most memory foam mattresses are known to be hypoallergenic and germ resistant. The open cell structure of memory foam makes it more breathable and protective against trapping moisture or attracting dust mites and other insects. This makes memory foam a hygienic option in comparison to other alternatives.

Memory foam mattresses are known to be long lasting

People who own memory foam mattresses acknowledge it as being a worthwhile investment, with many using them beyond 10 years. While innerspring mattresses need to be replaced more often, the ones that last longer can be more expensive than a durable memory foam mattress.

Most manufacturers provide a 10-year warranty on these mattresses, building confidence in their durability. The polyurethane content of memory foam contributes to its longer lifespan. Besides, better quality and denser memory foam mattresses are known to last longer.

Memory foam thus meets needs of comfort and support and offers longevity while being affordable and long-term cost saving.

Cons of a Memory Foam Mattresses

While memory foam has many advantages as stated, it could have some flaws as follows.

Memory foam is sometimes unable to provide adequate support

When memory foam reacts to heat and softens, it causes more pressure dents. People who weigh more may not get the right amount of support if the memory foam is too soft. It is therefore also not advisable to have softer memory foam mattresses for children.

While the lower layers of the mattress may prevent heavier body parts from caving and although it may provide support in the first few hours of sleep, it could disturb alignment, as it gets softer. It is for this reason that especially less dense memory foam as a base layer may not be ideal for support.

Memory foam responds to temperature changes

Memory foam has a bad reputation due to its heat absorbent properties. It is for this reason that memory foam can be uncomfortable and cause sleep disturbances. As it changes in relation to heat through the night, it seems to be less breathable than other kinds of mattress material.

While it relies on temperature to soften and provide comfort, it could remain too firm if the room is too cold. This could alter its comfort levels based on temperature.

Memory foam is slow acting to changes in sleep positions

While memory foam has less buoyancy, molds to the body and reacts to heat, it could make changing sleep positions difficult due to it slow reaction time. This could force the sleeper to remain in one position, making it uncomfortable.

Memory foam could be unhealthy due to chemical off-gassing

While the main component of memory foam is polyurethane, a number of chemicals are used to make the finished product. Depending on the manufacturer, these chemicals could cause allergic reactions and possible health problems.

To make it affordable, manufacturers cost cut, causing quality to suffer. Besides, memory foam is highly inflammable and further chemical treatments to prevent fires.

Besides having a strong odor, these chemicals could be detrimental to health especially for kids and people with immune problems. Most manufacturers, however, suggest airing out the mattress for a few days before usage while others guarantee no strong odors from chemicals.

Memory foam mattress can be expensive

Memory foam is meant to be more affordable however many varieties and types have caused prices to rise. Most brands combine memory foam with other materials and this causes an increase in prices.

New technologies such as gel memory foam, air cool foam and memory foam combined with natural fibers are priced higher than traditional memory foam. Memory foam mattresses with more layers generally are higher priced than the mattress that is 6 inches and under.


Like all other mattresses, memory foam has its pros and cons. When making a purchase, it helps to be acquainted with the different available options and study your own needs to make the right choice. Reading up on reviews and the company will ensure you make a safe long-term investment.

About ReviewsWorthy Team

Our team consists of enthusiastic and passionate people from different fields and experience. Some are geeks and spend most of their time among gadgets while others love nature and are always on the move! We spend 10s of hours researching and writing on each topic. The articles are then quality checked by our editors. View our "About us" section for more details about process and team.