What type of mattress is right for an adjustable bed?

An adjustable bed helps you to find your perfect sleeping position with ease. Should you want to elevate your night’s sleep further, the type of mattress you choose for your adjustable bed can make a big difference. This guide will take you through the types of mattresses for adjustable beds, and their features, to help you find the one that’s right for you.

What is an adjustable mattress?

An adjustable bed can accommodate multiple sleeping positions to aid overall comfort — whatever that looks like to you. Adjustable mattresses are specially designed to complement the functionality of an adjustable bed, with key features to promote a great night’s sleep now, and in the future.


Because your bed adjusts to different positions, your adjustable mattress needs to be flexible enough to move with the bed base. When buying from a supplier or retailer, it’s important to know what’s inside the mattress. For example, some use springs which can reduce flexibility.


An adjustable bed can be adjusted to hundreds of positions at the touch of a button, so adjustable mattresses must be built to withstand the wear and tear of daily use. When buying a mattress, look for one that bends with the bed but also returns easily to the normal flat position – these are perfect for an adjustable bed.

Comfort and support

It may seem obvious, but comfort and support are key features of a good mattress. A comfortable adjustable mattress, such as the AirFlow® Orthopaedic Mattress, will help provide a good night’s sleep while offering additional support to your body weight and reduced pressure from pain points.

Twin adjustable mattresses being used on the Elite Adjustable Twin Bed.

What types of mattresses are compatible with an adjustable bed?

Knowing what the best mattress for an adjustable bed is depends on which bed you pair it with. You can choose from the following mattresses:

  • Memory foam mattress
  • Latex foam mattress
  • Coil spring mattress

All three types of mattresses are compatible with an adjustable bed — but which is best for you?

1. Memory foam mattress

Our AirFlow® and Sleep ID® Adjustable Mattresses are topped with a layer of Visco Elastic foam. Your body heat softens the Visco Elastic foam, moulding to your body shape. This eliminates the common pressure points providing comfort and support. As its name suggests, memory foam returns to its normal position once the pressure is released.

Although memory foam contours easily with the base of an adjustable bed, it might not be the best choice for everyone.

Memory foam mattresses retain body heat which can be uncomfortable in warm weather. When they’re new, memory foam mattresses can produce an odd smell. This is called off-gassing. Although the effect is only temporary, this is one of the biggest complaints from memory foam mattress owners.

Close up of AirFlow® orthopaedic mattress
Our AirFlow® orthopaedic mattress

2. Latex mattress

Latex mattresses are flexible but in contrast to memory foam, latex can return to its original position much quicker and instead of using body heat to soften, Latex uses body weight to mould to your body shape and relieve pressure points.

If used with an adjustable bed, latex mattresses are flexible enough to contour to the base of the bed but as latex mattresses are more rigid, a thinner mattress is more appropriate for adjustable beds.

Can you use a regular mattress on an adjustable bed?

A regular mattress can function with an adjustable bed so long as it’s a compatible type. However, we always advise against using a coil spring mattress with an adjustable bed.

Developed in the 1900s, coil spring mattresses use steel springs in their support system. Because of their construction, the springs in the mattress can create pressure points which make them unsuitable for adjustable beds. They are also less flexible and need replacing more frequently.

Generally, we recommend using a specialist mattress, such as the SleepID or AirFlow® mattresses we provide with our adjustable beds.

What is the best mattress for an adjustable bed?

The best mattress for an adjustable bed shouldn’t be too thick as this can affect its flexibility and durability. While some companies recommend a thickness of 10 to 12 inches for an adjustable bed, there are no industry standards. The user’s weight is an important factor too. For example, an 18-stone person would need a thicker mattress than a 13-stone person.

Because of its flexibility and durability, a memory foam adjustable mattress is arguably the best solution for an adjustable bed. However, traditional memory foam can retain body heat, making it uncomfortable in the summer.

To solve this problem, our specialist AirFlow® Adjustable Mattress has a unique construction that circulates air. This allows you to enjoy the same luxury and comfort as memory foam, without overheating.

Plus, with Visco Elastic foam (Reflexion®) – originally developed by the US space programme – the AirFlow® Adjustable Mattress absorbs energy, without creating an upward force. 

This, combined with a layer of insulation between the pocket spring and supporting foam, means the AirFlow® Mattress relieves pressure on joints — cushioning the shoulders, pelvis, hips, ankles and heels.

How to buy a mattress for an adjustable bed

A good-quality adjustable mattress is a long-term investment, but cheaper options often only last a couple of years and can provide less value for money. This means it’s important to look for a reputable seller whether you’re purchasing directly from the manufacturer, a high street retailer or online.

Good suppliers are easy to identify via approval schemes, such as National Bed Federation (NBF) and BackCare. These ensure that companies comply with a code of practice and meet stringent standards.

Look out for these logos to identify reputable companies:

Logos for the National Bed Federation, Back Care, British Furniture Manufacturers and Made in Britain

Should you buy an adjustable mattress in a high street shop?

Buying from a high street retailer means you can try out your adjustable mattress first! This will allow you to see if the mattress is suitable for your adjustable bed and ensure it has all the key features you need. 

At Adjustamatic, we can provide a home visit to test your mattress. Alternatively, visit us at our store in Southampton, or our factory store in Denbigh, North Wales. Alternatively, you find us at an event near you!

Why you should buy your adjustable mattress from a specialist manufacturer?

Buying a mattress for an adjustable bed from a specialist manufacturer will give you the confidence of knowing your mattress has all the features and comfort you expect.

At Adjustamatic, all our mattresses meet National Bed Federation standards and are made to order, offering you a custom fit and features to complement your adjustable bed. Our AirFlow® orthopaedic mattress combines the benefits of memory foam with next-generation pump technology that helps air to circulate while you sleep – eliminating overheating and disrupted sleep.

The AirFlow® mattress also has an insulating layer between the pocket spring and the supporting foam to provide extra flexibility. Compact pocket springs in a barrel shaped profile also help the mattress flex while offering additional support. The density of springs enhances these body moulding properties and further reduces pressure on the joints, cushioning vulnerable shoulders, pelvis, hips, ankles and heels. 

Financial considerations when buying an adjustable mattress

Although not as costly as an adjustable bed, buying a mattress is still a big investment. However, there are finance options available to help make the cost more manageable. Depending on your circumstances, you could be eligible for VAT exemption on your adjustable bed or mattress.

More advice on the best adjustable mattress

If you’re buying a new mattress and would like more information from Adjustamatic, don’t hesitate to get in touch with our friendly and professional team. Simply give us a call on 0800 689 9823 (9am-5pm Mon-Fri), or drop us a message. We can organise a home visit for you to trial any mattress, as well as give you professional and reliable advice.