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Best Firm Mattresses in Canada

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Written by: Alex Savy
Last updated on

The Canadian mattress market has got very diverse in recent years, which makes the choice of a good model a pretty daunting task.

Especially if you want something specific, like a firm mattress.

Thankfully, I’ve got you covered here!

Check my reviews of the best firm mattresses in Canada right below! I’ve selected some of the well-known players on the market and thoroughly tested their mattresses, so it should be easy for you to pick the right one!

A Quick Preview

IMAGE PRODUCT
Douglas Mattress Check Current Price
Puffy Mattress Check Current Price
Novosbed Mattress Check Current Price
GhostBed Luxe Mattress Check Current Price
Emma Hybrid Comfort Check Current Price
The Summerhill Mattress Check Current Price

Our Reviews of 6 Best Firm Mattresses in Canada (July 2024)

Best Overall - Editor’s Choice — Douglas Mattress

Douglas Mattress

Highlights

  • decent support in any sleeping position;
  • Reinforced foam edges point towards extra sleep space, and durability;
  • It is adept at sinking motion, making it a good pick for large weight differences in partnered sleepers.

The Douglas is my editor’s choice due to its excellent price point, good edge support, and great responsiveness. Being a close substitute to the Novosbed, means it performed impressively in my reviews. While it is cheaper than the Novosbed, it lacks the adjustability of the Novosbed. The Douglas Original is $460 less expensive than the Novosbed and $799 less expensive than the GhostBed Luxe. However, its affordability doesn’t compromise its ability to keep you feeling supported and comfortable. Asides that, the Douglas is my go-to recommendation for couples because of its edge support. 

I like that I was able to move around freely on this mattress, and that it had more bounce than the Novosbed. Bounce-back speed also affects ease of movement, and the Douglas Original did great in this regard. From my tests, the Douglas Original recovered from compressions after about 0.8 seconds. I could feel a slight delay as my body was cradled, but I could still easily change sleeping positions. The Douglas Original is 0.9 seconds faster at recovering from impressions than the Puffy, which means the Douglas is better suited to sleepers who shift around a lot in bed and need ease of movement. In addition, being an all-foam mattress option, it was cool to touch and duly thermoregulated as the need arose. The targeted support was also good, making it easy to see why it is good for back pain discomfort.

Not only that, but the Douglas Original also has great edge support. From my review, the Douglas Original had 3.54 inches of compression at the edge, and I could sit without fear of falling out. The Douglas Original has 0.36 inches firmer edge support than the GhostBed Luxe, making the Douglas Original the better option for a firmer, more stable edge.

Testing the edge support
Testing the edge support

The Douglas bed is a decent budget-friendly pick for almost every user. It will ensure a cool and comfortable sleep in any position and seems pretty durable and long-lasting.

Based on Our Tests

During my review, I felt that the Douglas mattress provided a comfortable medium-firm cushion for my body. Moreover, I also liked the cool feel and other sleep-inducing features, such as edge support and thermoregulation. In my opinion, the Douglas mattress offers the best bang for the buck.

Douglas mattress construction

Back sleeping on the Douglas mattress

Best for Couples — Puffy Mattress

Puffy Mattress

Highlights

  • has an easy-to-remove cover that’s machine-washable and comes off in seconds, helping you keep your sleeping area clean;
  • the CoolingCloud foam is cushioning, redistributing your weight and keeping your spine straight;
  • the soft upper layers absorb most motion, helping to keep you from being jostled at night.

The Puffy is my best option for couples due to its firmness, excellent motion isolation, and slow-adaptive comfort. The Puffy offers an outstanding balance between comfort and support. From my tests, I measured its firmness at around 7, which is soft enough to cushion my pressure points, yet firm enough to keep my spine visibly straight and tension-free. The Puffy is 1 point firmer than the GhostBed Luxe, which means it can offer a firmer feel, yet you can still enjoy nearly as much sinkage.

Response speed is also helpful regarding firmness, as a slower recovery means the mattress conforms more slowly to your body and can more easily support you. From my tests, the Puffy took 1.7 seconds to recover from compressions, which is slow enough that I could enjoy a slight delay as I sank into the cradling foam, yet my hips remained level. The Puffy was 0.6 seconds slower than the GhostBed Flex, which means the Puffy can offer a more pressure-relieving feel.

“The Puffy ‘hugs’ a sleeper, leaving an imprint that remains for a short time. Some sleepers enjoy the delayed response and don’t mind less ease of movement for the slow-adaptive body hug,” said Jackson Lindeke, Executive Director of Sleep Foundation.

The Puffy also absorbs a great deal of motion thanks to its CoolingCloud layer. This is helpful for couples who want a firm mattress yet need enough softness to cradle and absorb motion from a restless partner. According to my review, the Puffy absorbed nearly all motion up to 2.5 inches between my compression and the glass of water. This is enough isolation that my partner wasn’t disturbed when I tossed and turned during the night. The Puffy was 2.5 inches more isolating than the GhostBed Flex, which means the Puffy is the better option for sleepers who struggle with restless partners.

Testing the motion transfer
Testing the motion transfer

Based on Our Tests

As indicated by my tests, the Puffy is soft and cradling yet offers balanced support. I was cushioned yet kept straight on my side and back, and my spine was free of tension.

Stomach sleeping on the Puffy mattress

Edge support of the Puffy mattress

Best Option for Spinal Alignment — Novosbed Mattress

Novosbed Mattress

Highlights

  • it has a very competitive price, ensuring you get value for money spent;
  • highly supportive mattress. Provides the required upthrust to keep the body in the right posture;
  • the breathable cover aids thermoregulation, ensuring sleepers are comfy through their stay in bed.

The Novosbed is my best option for spinal alignment due to its firm support, motion isolation, and excellent edge support. The Novosbed is 0.5 inches firmer than the Ghostbed Flex, thanks to its medium firmness. It is perfect for people who enjoy on their backs or stomachs because the layers offer the right amount of firm support to maintain a neutral spine position. From my tests, the Novosbed edges out the Douglas and Ghostbed Flex mattresses in value. The cost of the Novosbed is simply too competitive. 

Being a firm mattress, I got premium motion isolation and support. The Novosbed performed better than the GhostBed Flex in the motion isolation test because it was able to reduce motion transfer by 2 inches more than the Ghostbed Flex—ensuring fewer disturbances for people who share their bed with a restless partner. I was also impressed with the edges that held firm even when consistently occupied that space on the bed. The Novosbed’s edge support is 0.4 inches lower than the GhostBed’s—making it slightly softer than the GhostBed Flex but still having enough edge support to ensure limited edge-roll off when sleeping.

“Firm edges are often helpful for couples as it increases how much surface space can be used. Weak edges mean you may not feel secure near the edge and use more of the centre, making the bed cramped,” commented Heather Wright, a Pathologist at Sleep Foundation.

Testing the edge support
Testing the edge support

Cooling was top notch although the breathability is enhanced by the tencel cover. Considering firm mattresses are usually more dense, this mattress wasn’t very challenging to unpack and maneuver. Finally, I like that you can order up the Novosbed Comfort + accessory to alter the mattress firmness if you are unsatisfied.

Based on Our Tests

I found the Novosbed to be firm and would give you great support no matter how you sleep. I love how it aligns with my body giving me a relaxed sleep. It was during the test that I noticed that my allergies aren't flaring up as the breathable foam keeps the moisture that causes the build-up of molds out, you can also order the comfort+ kit for an extra feel of comfort.

Cover

Sleeping on the back on the Novosbed mattress

Best Firm Memory Foam Mattress — GhostBed Luxe Mattress

GhostBed Luxe Mattress

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Highlights

  • the cool-to-the-touch cover is soft, moisture-wicking, and helps to keep you feeling cool.
  • the Ghost Bounce layer helps keep you feeling buoyant and unrestrained while lying down;
  • the soft comfort foam layers compress deeply, conforming and molding to your body for excellent pressure relief.

The GhostBed Luxe is my best option that’s all memory foam due to its responsive and supportive foam, cradling sinkage, and high bounce level. Quick recovery speeds help ensure you don’t feel ‘stuck’ while sleeping and can keep your spine more free and supported. From my tests, the GhostBed Luxe recovered from impressions after only 0.4 seconds, which is impressive considering its deep sinkage. I could enjoy deep contouring and cradling and still have ease of movement and minimal restriction when moving from my side to my back. The GhostBed Luxe was faster to respond than the GhostBed Flex by 0.7 inches, making the GhostBed Luxe the better choice for firmness and ease of movement.

Not only does the GhostBed Luxe have excellent responsiveness, but it also boasts deep sinkage. This allows you to feel cradled and enjoy a supported, neutral spine. From my tests, the GhostBed Luxe had 2.7 inches of sinkage, enough for me to feel well-cradled yet evenly balanced. The GhostBed Luxe has 0.2 inches more sinkage than the Puffy, making it the better option for sleepers who enjoy as much cradling sinkage as possible.

Side sleeping
Side sleeping

Another useful thing for the GhostBed Luxe’s firmness is its ability to keep you buoyant and unrestricted. This bounciness is mainly due to the Ghost Bounce layer, which keeps you free while changing positions. From my tests, the GhostBed Luxe had 8.01 inches for bounce, which provided an even surface and slight spring-back so I could move more easily. The GhostBed Luxe had 1.22 inches more bounce than the Novosbed, making the GhostBed Luxe the better choice for a springy, buoyant, and firm feel.

Based on Our Tests

According to my review, the GhostBed Luxe made me feel even pressure relief and released muscle tension while on my back. It also kept my spine straight.

GhostBed Luxe Firmness

Stomach sleeping on the GhostBed Luxe Mattress

Best Hybrid Option — The Summerhill

The Summerhill Mattress Review

Highlights

  • The Summerhill uses a reinforced foam layer in the centre third of the mattress to lift the hips up, making the mattress feel firmer.
  • The open-cell foam of The Summerhill is responsive, creating a fast-adaptive surface for easy movement.
  • The high-density fam edge is robust, ensuring you don’t accidentally slip off while sitting at the edge.

The Summerhill is my best hybrid option due to its excellent sinkage and reinforced centre, motion isolation, and edge support.

The Summerhill offers a well-balanced sinkage for fans of a firm mattress. In light of my hand compression tests, The Summerhill had a sinkage of about 1.85 inches. I could enjoy a balanced pushback that would help give a feeling of pressure relief and support when doing my hand compression tests on this mattress.

The Summerhill had 0.07 inches less compression than the Douglas. Of the two, I would recommend The Summerhill for sleepers who want more support for a firm-feel bed.

Sinkage of The Summerhill Mattress

Motion isolation is another essential feature of firm mattresses. Oftentimes, firm mattresses struggle with making the layers firmer and able to isolate motion due to the increased bounce. The Summerhill does well in this regard due to its coils and foam mix. 

From my hand compression tests, I observed as little as 3 inches worth of movement traveling across the bed. This is low enough that you can toss and turn beside your partner, and they won’t get disturbed.

The Summerhill had a similar motion as the GhostBed Luxe at around 3 inches. However, The Summerhill was slightly outperformed by the Novosbed by 1 inch. Regarding the best motion isolation, I would recommend the Novosbed for extremely restless sleepers.

Edge support is a part of firm mattresses, and this fact includes The Summerhill. Derived from my compression tests along the edge, I measured a sinkage of about 3.5 inches. This is firm enough that I felt sleepers could sit without worrying about accidentally falling out.

The Summerhill slightly outperformed the GhostBed Luxe in edge support by 0.4 inches. I would recommend The Summerhill for sleepers who prefer more stability and peace of mind while hugging the edge.

Based on Our Tests

From my compression tests, The Summerhill had a softer feel in its top section, which is ideal for the shoulders of side sleepers. I found it had a firmer feel along its centre, which can help improve spinal alignment if you sleep on your back or side.

The Summerhill Mattress Cover
The Summerhill Mattress Firmness

Why You Should Trust Me

Each mattress that we test and review when determining the best firm mattress in Canada goes through a variety of real-world circumstances. We weigh the benefits and drawbacks of each firm mattress to identify the qualities that will work best for different people and their sleeping positions, including side, back, stomach, and combination positions. 

During testing, we meticulously examine the mattress's composition and thermoregulation, as well as its responsiveness, firmness, sinkage, motion transfer, and edge support. Our tests are broken down into nine relevant usage categories, and the same information is obtained for each mattress to ensure accuracy and reliability in the results. Because we use each of these firm mattresses for an extended amount of time while doing our testing, we are able to give our readers an objective opinion and thoroughly describe our experience with each mattress we review.

Is a Firm Mattress Right for You?

Firm mattresses are not absolute, so they are not inherently right or wrong for you. A suitably firm mattress depends on the amount of pressure (weight) a sleeper can exert on the mattress, and the quality of support they need as per their favorite sleeping position.  

Considering these two factors, you can deduce that  a firm mattress to one person can be too soft to another. However, there are some categories of people that may need to invest in firm mattresses to take advantage of the benefits(1). Here is how it applies:

  • Heavy sleepers. Firmer beds are great for larger users. They can distribute the weight around the mattress surface without feeling like a hammock and creating awkward curves in their lower back.
  • Individuals with joint pain. If you suffer from arthritis or another joint disease, you know that sometimes it can limit your ability to move freely. A firm mattress doesn’t let you sink too deep, so it can help you move around the mattress surface and shift between different positions more easily.
  • Scoliosis sufferers. People with scoliosis or other spine misalignments can opt for a firmer mattress that prevents their back issues from getting worse while still offering support and pressure relief. “To relieve pressure, the ideal mattresses to look for are memory foam and hybrid. This is because there are several comfort layers that aim to relieve pressure,” explained Alexandra Garrett, the staff at Forbes.
  • Hot sleepers. Most firmer beds don’t offer too much give, so the area of contact between your body and the mattress is smaller, which prevents you from overheating.
  • Back sleepers. The supine position is considered the healthiest for your spine, and you can make the most of it with a firmer mattress. It will easily support proper spine alignment and ensure even distribution of your weight. Novosbed-3407
  • Stomach sleepers. Most health specialists advise strongly against stomach sleeping because it can mess with your spinal health really bad. However, if you find yourself comfortable only in this position — just like my wife — then a firm mattress can work for you. It supports the lower abdomen, preventing your lumbar spine from straining.

If you’re not sure whether a firm or extra firm mattress will work for you, start with trying these tips to make your current bed firmer and see how it goes.

Also read: Best Soft Mattresses

How to Choose a Good Firm Mattress in Canada?

To choose a suitably firm mattress, you need to consider the brand for trust, construction material for effectiveness, and special considerations in the mattress design for back health. 

These three are crucial to picking the right mattress firmness as long as the end goal is improved sleep and health(2). Here are some further explanations on those three factors.

Check the Brand’s History on the Market

Good mattress brands don’t just pop on the market out of nowhere. They gain a reputation by making quality products and being honest with their customers.

So, check the brand’s history on the market. You can find the main milestones in the ‘About Us’ section on the website and then google reviews. I recommend that you search for reviews on the Web instead of reading them from the website, where they might not be written by real users.

When checking the brand’s history, consider:

  • Longevity: How long has the brand been in the market?
  • Customer Feedback: What are customers saying about the brand on third-party review sites?
  • Awards and Recognition: Has the brand received any industry awards or certifications?

Research the Materials

Here’s the deal:

Foam firmness can be calculated by using the parameter called the Indentation Load (Force) Deflection (ILD or IFD). ILD shows how much weight (in pounds) you need to compress a memory foam sample by 25% of its volume. 

ILD of memory foam can range between 15 to 18 points for a comfort layer and more than 50 points for a base layer. Generally, the ILD of 15 points and higher is considered firm.

Polyfoam, in general, is less dense than memory foam, so the firm feel here will start at 12-15 points.

Latex, on the contrary, may feel more rigid than synthetic foam, so if you’re looking for a firm mattress, check for 15-20 points of ILD and higher.

For coils, the main parameter that specifies firmness is steel gauge (the thickness of the wire used for making coils). The gauge is marked in numerics and usually, the lower the number, the thicker the steel wires.

The information above might be specific and not always displayed on the manufacturer’s website. But you can contact customer support directly, via a chat or by phone.

Additionally, consider:

  • Hybrid Options: Some mattresses combine foam and coils for balanced support and firmness.
  • Eco-friendly Materials: Check if the mattress uses organic or environmentally friendly materials.
  • Certifications: Look for certifications like CertiPUR-US or OEKO-TEX for safety and quality assurance.

Also read: Best Luxury Mattresses in Canada

Don’t Forget About Back Health

Your mattress should be able to relieve your back problems and provide relaxation regardless of its firmness levels.

But certain brands go further and equip their beds with some features that can improve your back pain situation, such as:

  • lumbar pads for the increased lumbar spine support;
  • zoned comfort layers for precise cradling;
  • pocketed coils for more pronounced pressure relief.

So, if you’re in the market for a good firm mattress for back pain issues, these are the features you should look for.

Additionally, consider:

  • Adjustable Bases: Some mattresses are compatible with adjustable bases for personalized comfort.
  • Edge Support: A mattress with strong edge support can prevent sagging and provide better overall support.
  • Trial Periods and Warranties: Look for brands that offer long trial periods and robust warranties to ensure satisfaction with your purchase.

Also read: Best King Size Mattresses in Canada

Conclusion

As you can see, there are a lot of Canadian brands that can offer you a decent firm mattress. All the models I collected in my selection have great value for money and incredible supportive properties, but don’t feel uncomfortably rigid and won’t provoke any pain and stiffness.

In my opinion, the Douglas is my best option for a firm mattress as it offers an excellent price point, has good edge support, and excellent responsiveness. Sleepers who sleep hot can take advantage of its cool features in any sleep position.

What about you? Which of these mattresses can make a great purchase for your bedroom? Share your thoughts below!

Still have questions about finding the best firm mattress in Canada? Alex Savy, the Co-Founder and Chief Editor at Comfynorth has reviewed countless sleep products with over 4 years in the industry and can help you find what you’re looking for. Reach out through email at alex@thecomfynorth.ca. When emailing Alex, include your full name and phone number or email address.

References

  1. Monalisa P. (2020 July). The Amazing Benefits of Buying a Firm Mattress! Retrieved from https://gharpedia.com/blog/benefits-of-buying-a-firm-mattress/
  2. Marjorie H. et al. (2021 Feb). Does a Good Mattress Lead to Better Sleep? Retrieved from https://www.healthline.com/health/healthy-sleep/does-a-good-mattress-improve-sleep

Our research

35

Mattresses Considered

100

Hours of Research

2

Sleep Experts Consulted

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