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10 Inch vs 12 Inch Mattresses: Pros and Cons of Each


When it comes to selecting a new mattress, thickness plays a crucial role in providing the right balance of comfort and support. This guide will help you understand the differences between 10-inch and 12-inch mattresses and provide insights on how to decide which thickness is best for your unique needs and preferences.

Quick comparison of our tester’s favorite 10 inch and 12 inch mattresses…

Editor's Pick (Best 10-Inch Mattress)
The Puffy Original
by Puffy Mattress
What we love:
  • Medium-firm feel fits all sleep types
  • Multiple awards for best all around mattress
  • 100% made in the USA!
  • Breathable and cooling
  • Firm supportive base foam
  • Stain-resistant cover
  • Donates beds to children in need
Buy Now

A look inside the 10 inch:


This 10 inch mattress has a foam core with comfort layers on top. This is typical of most 10 inch mattresses and will be very supportive but will be slightly firmer than the 12 inch and won’t offer as high quality or luxurious pressure relief & spinal alignment.

Editor's Pick (Best 12-Inch Mattress)
The Puffy Lux Hybrid
by Puffy
What we love:
  • Unbeatable value
  • Heavy duty support from wrapped coil system
  • Luxury pressure relief
  • Removable and washable cover
  • Made in the USA
Buy Here

A Look inside the 12 inch:


The 12 inch mattress uses a coil innerspring unit at its base, rather than a foam base. It then has comfort layers on top. This is going to offer a slightly more plush feel than the 10 inch with more luxurious comfort and with additional support and pressure relief.


10 Inch Mattresses:
A 10-inch mattress is ideal for back and stomach sleepers, lighter individuals, and those seeking a firmer feel. It also suits people with limited budgets or mobility concerns, as it tends to be more cost-effective and easier to move on compared to thicker mattresses.

See our favorite 10 inch mattress picks here

12 Inch Mattresses:
A 12-inch mattress is ideal for side sleepers and heavier individuals who require additional cushioning and support. Its thicker construction offers a plush feel and better pressure relief, making it a suitable choice for those seeking enhanced comfort.

See our favorite 12 inch mattress picks here

Pros and Cons of 10-Inch vs 12-Inch Mattresses

10 Inch Mattress


  1. Firmer support: Ideal for back and stomach sleepers who require a firmer surface for proper spinal alignment.
  2. Budget-friendly: Generally less expensive than thicker mattresses due to fewer materials used in construction.
  3. Easier to move: Lighter and easier to transport, making it suitable for those with limited mobility or who frequently move.
  4. Aesthetics: Offers a sleek, minimalist look that appeals to some individuals.


  1. Limited pressure relief: May not provide enough cushioning for side sleepers or heavier individuals.
  2. Shorter lifespan: Thinner construction could lead to faster wear and tear compared to thicker mattresses.
  3. Less luxurious feel: Fewer layers may result in a less plush, luxurious sleeping experience.

12 Inch Mattress


  1. Enhanced comfort: Thicker layers provide better cushioning and pressure relief, making it ideal for side sleepers and heavier individuals.
  2. Increased durability: More layers and thicker construction can result in a longer lifespan, especially with proper care.
  3. Luxurious feel: Offers a more plush, luxurious sleeping experience compared to thinner mattresses.
  4. Better motion isolation: Thicker mattresses often provide better motion isolation, reducing disturbances from a partner’s movements.


  1. Higher cost: Generally more expensive due to the additional materials and layers involved in construction.
  2. Heavier and more challenging to move: Bulkier and heavier, which could pose difficulties for those with limited mobility or who need to move the mattress frequently.
  3. Potential compatibility issues: May require deeper-pocketed sheets or specific bed frames designed to accommodate the added thickness.
  4. Can be too soft for some sleepers: The additional cushioning might not provide enough firmness for back or stomach sleepers who require more support.

Understanding the Differences Between 10-Inch and 12-Inch Mattresses


Both 10-inch and 12-inch mattresses can have different layers and materials, such as memory foam, latex, or innerspring. Generally, 12-inch mattresses have more layers or thicker layers compared to 10-inch mattresses, resulting in a more luxurious feel.


The thickness of a mattress can impact its overall firmness. 10-inch mattresses tend to be firmer, while 12-inch mattresses usually offer a softer, more plush feel due to the additional layers.


Thicker mattresses can provide better support and pressure relief, especially for heavier individuals or side sleepers who require extra cushioning for their shoulders and hips.


Generally, 12-inch mattresses have a longer lifespan compared to 10-inch mattresses, as the additional layers can better withstand wear and tear over time.


Thicker mattresses are typically more expensive than thinner ones due to the additional materials and construction. Consider your budget when deciding between a 10-inch and 12-inch mattress.

Factors to Consider When Choosing Between a 10-Inch and 12-Inch Mattress

Sleep position:

Your preferred sleep position plays a significant role in determining the right mattress thickness. Side sleepers often benefit from thicker mattresses (12-inch) for better pressure relief, while back and stomach sleepers may prefer a firmer, thinner mattress (10-inch).

Body weight:

Your body weight is another essential factor to consider. Heavier individuals may find a 12-inch mattress more comfortable and supportive, while lighter individuals may not require the additional cushioning and could be comfortable on a 10-inch mattress.


Thicker mattresses are generally more expensive. If you’re working with a limited budget, a 10-inch mattress may be a more cost-effective option. However, if you can invest in a thicker mattress, the potential benefits in comfort and durability could be worth the extra cost.

Mobility and ease of movement:

Thicker mattresses may be more challenging to move or adjust in bed, especially for elderly individuals or those with limited mobility. If ease of movement is a concern, a 10-inch mattress may be a better option.

Bed frame compatibility:

Ensure that your bed frame can accommodate the mattress thickness you choose. Some bed frames may have specific requirements or limitations regarding mattress thickness.

Aesthetic preferences:

Consider your aesthetic preferences when choosing a mattress thickness. A thicker mattress can give a more luxurious appearance, while a thinner mattress can create a sleek, minimalist look.

Trying Out and Purchasing Your Mattress

  1. Test mattresses in-store: If possible, visit a mattress store to try out both 10-inch and 12-inch mattresses to determine your comfort preference.
  2. Take advantage of sleep trials: Many online mattress companies offer sleep trials that allow you to test a mattress in your home for an extended period. This can be helpful in determining if a specific thickness is right for you.
  3. Read reviews: Look for reviews from people with similar sleep preferences and body types to gain insight into how a particular mattress thickness might work for you.


Q: Is a 10-inch mattress better for back sleepers, while a 12-inch mattress is better for side sleepers?

A: Generally, back sleepers may find a 10-inch mattress provides adequate support and firmness, while side sleepers often benefit from a thicker 12-inch mattress for better pressure relief. However, individual preferences and comfort levels vary, so it’s essential to try out different options before making a decision.

Q: Will a 12-inch mattress last longer than a 10-inch mattress?

A: While a 12-inch mattress tends to be more durable due to its thicker construction, other factors like materials, quality, and proper care also affect a mattress’s lifespan. A high-quality 10-inch mattress could last just as long as a lower-quality 12-inch mattress.

Q: Are 12-inch mattresses always more expensive than 10-inch mattresses?

A: Thicker mattresses typically have higher price points due to the additional materials and construction involved. However, factors like brand, materials, and sales or discounts can also affect pricing. It’s possible to find both affordable and luxury options in both 10-inch and 12-inch mattresses.

Q: Do I need a specific bed frame for a 10-inch or 12-inch mattress?

A: Most bed frames can accommodate various mattress thicknesses. However, it’s essential to check your bed frame’s specifications and requirements to ensure compatibility with the mattress thickness you choose.

Q: Can I use a mattress topper to increase the thickness of my 10-inch mattress?

A: Yes, a mattress topper can add extra cushioning and increase the overall thickness of your mattress. However, a topper won’t significantly alter the mattress’s support or overall construction, so it’s essential to choose the right mattress thickness from the start if possible.

Q: Is it more challenging to find sheets and bedding for a 10-inch or 12-inch mattress?

A: Most standard sheets and bedding can accommodate mattresses ranging from 10 to 12 inches in thickness. When shopping for sheets, check the pocket depth to ensure they will fit your mattress properly. Deep-pocket sheets may be necessary for mattresses thicker than 12 inches.

Q: Does mattress thickness affect motion isolation and noise reduction?

A: Thicker mattresses, especially those with more layers, can provide better motion isolation and noise reduction. However, other factors like materials and construction also play a significant role in motion isolation and noise reduction. Memory foam and hybrid mattresses tend to excel in these areas.

Q: Are there specific mattress materials recommended for 10-inch or 12-inch mattresses?

A: Both 10-inch and 12-inch mattresses can be made from various materials, such as memory foam, latex, innerspring, or hybrid designs. The choice of materials depends on your personal preferences and needs, including factors like support, pressure relief, temperature regulation, and motion isolation.

Q: Can a thicker mattress help with my back pain?

A: While a thicker mattress can provide additional support and pressure relief, it’s essential to choose a mattress based on your preferred sleep position and body type to ensure proper spinal alignment. Consult with a healthcare professional for specific recommendations related to back pain and mattress selection.

In conclusion, the choice between a 10-inch and 12-inch mattress largely depends on individual preferences, sleep positions, and body weight. A 10-inch mattress is typically firmer and more budget-friendly, making it suitable for back and stomach sleepers or those with limited mobility. On the other hand, a 12-inch mattress provides enhanced cushioning and support, ideal for side sleepers and heavier individuals seeking a more luxurious feel. Ultimately, it’s essential to carefully assess your unique needs and preferences and consider factors like budget, durability, and aesthetics to make the best decision for a comfortable and restful night’s sleep.

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