Nectar Mattress review 2023: sink-in comfort that won’t sink your wallet
Tech Reviews

Nectar Mattress review 2023: sink-in comfort that won’t sink your wallet

Nectar Mattress: Two-minute review

The Nectar Mattress is a supremely popular all-foam mattress. But does it live up to the hype? To answer that, I slept on a twin size memory foam mattress for three weeks, rating it on a range of comfort and performance criteria, as well as asking a panel of testers, of different shapes, sizes and sleep styles, to share their opinions. 

I was impressed – not to spoil the full review for you, but the Nectar memory foam mattress now holds a coveted spot in TechRadar's best mattress ranking, as well as sitting right at the top of its best memory foam mattress guide. 

The Nectar is a durable and comfortable full-foam mattress that offers a balance of pressure relief and proper support. The medium-firm feel with gentle sink-in cradling will suit most people, but is especially well suited to side-sleepers. If you're lighter or heavier in weight and/or prefer to rest on your stomach or back, then this might not be the right fit for you. 

For sleepers who occasionally overheat, the woven cooling cover of the Nectar Mattress should help regulate temperature, but chronic overheaters may not find it effective enough. I was more impressed with how well the Nectar mattress absorbed movement – couples who share a bed with a restless partner are unlikely to be jolted awake when sleeping on this. 

Where the Nectar really shines is in value for money. Although it's not the cheapest mattress on the market, it hits the sweet spot between quality and affordability with its lower mid-range price tag. A year-long trial and forever warranty (very generous for a bed in this price bracket), give peace of mind when purchasing. 

Still undecided? I've summed up all the key points in the table below, or alternatively read on for my full Nectar Mattress review…

Note: Nectar sells in both the UK and the US. This guide focuses on the Nectar Memory Foam mattress in the US – for the UK review, toggle the flag drop-down menu in the main navigation bar. 

Nectar Mattress review: Design & materials

  • A 12-inch all-foam mattress, also available as a hybrid with springs
  • Three different foam layers, including memory foam
  • Cooling cover is technically removable but spot-clean only

The Nectar Memory Foam is constructed from three different foams, plus an upper and lower cover. It's made in the US using materials sourced from Malaysia, Vietnam, Mexico, and the United States.

At the top, you'll find a soft, quilted, cooling poly-blend cover with heat-wicking properties. Despite being zippered, Nectar strongly advises against removing it as doing so could damage the foam layers and void your warranty. It's also spot clean-only – we recommend adding a mattress protector to safeguard it from spills and stains.

Image shows inside the Nectar Mattress so that you can see each of the five different layers

(Image credit: Nectar)

Beneath the cover sits two inches of high-density, pressure-relieving gel memory foam. That's followed by three inches of 'dynamic' foam, which provide a little sink. Finally, there's a seven-inch layer of sturdy base foam, to provide a sturdy base. All the foams used in the Nectar mattress are CertiPUR-US certified, which ensures they meet certain minimum health and environmental standards (almost all most memory foam mattresses have this certification, but it's well worth checking for).

The Nectar also features a shift-resistant lower cover to ensure it stays put as you sleep along, and if you do go rogue and unzip the cover (again, not advised) you'll find a thin layer of fabric to help keep the foam layers together.

Diagram showing layers inside the Nectar Hybrid mattress (left) and all-foam mattress

(Image credit: Nectar)

If you prefer a little more bounce to your bed, the Nectar mattress is also available as a hybrid, with a layer of 8-inch, individually wrapped coils. It's available in all the main mattress sizes, and sits amongst TechRadar's best king size mattress and best queen size mattress picks. 

The Nectar is the cheapest and simplest of the brand's mattress lineup. If you want to upgrade, the next model up is the Nectar Premier, followed by the Premier Copper. The mattresses get taller and firmer as you move up the range, as well as add cooling features. Each model is available as an all-foam version or a hybrid, with springs. You can see exactly how the models compare on this page of the brand website.

Note: The design of the Nectar Mattress has evolved since its 2017 launch. The original Nectar had a Tencel cover and a six-inch foam base layer. In late 2021, a product refresh introduced a cooling cover and boosted the base layer an extra inch. This review focuses on the current, updated design.

  • Design score: 3.5 out of 5

Nectar Mattress review: Price & value for money

  • Sits in the lower mid-range price bracket, and is great value for money
  • Never sold at MSRP – evergreen deal knocks 33% off
  • Best time to buy is during a 40% off flash sale – look out in early November

The Nectar Mattress is a lower mid-range model that's never sold at full price – you can ignore the MSRPs here thanks to permanent Nectar mattress sales that knock off hundreds of dollars off the ticket price. The current evergreen deal knocks 33% off MSRP. This offer has been running for several months and I'm not expecting it to finish any time soon.

Here is the 'official' pricing for the Nectar Mattress, as well as the evergreen discount price you can expect to actually pay:

  • Twin: MSRP $599 (normally priced $359)
  • Twin XL: MSRP $849 (normally priced $569)
  • Full: MSRP $899 (normally priced $599)
  • Queen: MSRP $1,049 (normally priced $699)
  • King: MSRP $1,349 (normally priced $899)
  • Cal king: MSRP $1,349 (normally priced $899)
  • Split king: MSRP $1,698 (normally priced $1,138)

Although the pricing at Nectar is generally pretty stable, the brand will occasionally run a 40% off 'flash sale' for a few days, taking the price of a queen size down to $629. The timings of these are unpredictable, and they tend not to coincide with regular shopping events, when all the other brands are dropping their prices. 

There is usually one or two in November, during the run-up to the Black Friday mattress sales (note: not on Black Friday itself). There was also one in early May 2023. If you spot one of these sales, it's well worth taking advantage of. 

Previous Nectar offers have included a freebie bedding bundle, but the brand seems to have done away with that in favor of lower outright prices and the option to add an accessory bundle at a heavily discounted price if you need those extras.

Nectar amps up its value for money by offering exceptional extras: a 365-night sleep trial and a forever warranty. Though these perks aren't as rare as they used to be, it's still uncommon to find them paired with a mattress at this price point. Returns are free, as well, if you don't get on with your Nectar Mattress within the 1-year trial.

All-foam mattresses can be very low-priced, and the Nectar isn't the cheapest mattress around. However, I think it hits that sweet spot between quality and affordability, and delivers excellent value for money – it's a far better model than any of the options in TechRadar's best cheap mattress guide.

  • Value score: 4 out of 5

Nectar Mattress review: Comfort & support

  • A medium firm mattress rated 6.5-7 out of 10 on the firmness scale
  • Loads of pressure relief, especially for side sleeping
  • Heavier bodies may need a firmer, more supportive bed 

The Nectar Mattress has just one firmness, which the brand rates a 6.5 (medium firm). I personally found it skewed closer to a 7, although other testers felt Nectar's assessment of 6.5 is on the money. In any case, it's quite rare to find a true medium-firm memory foam model, but my fellow testers and I think Nectar has achieved this.

That said, firmness is subjective, and one person’s firm may be another person’s medium-firm. This is evident when reading user reviews — and a reason why Nectar offers such a generous trial period. 

A twin Nectar Mattress on a platform bed frame

(Image credit: Future / Alison Barretta)

For three weeks, I slept on a twin Nectar Mattress. As a dominant side sleeper, the Nectar hit all the right beats: ample cushioning with plenty of support for my spine. After sleeping on a firm all-foam mattress, the Nectar was a welcome change of pace, and I can confidently call it one of the best mattresses for side sleepers I've ever tried. The Nectar mattress delivers a comforting, body-hug feel that nicely cradles the shoulders, hips, and knees during side sleeping.

As a combination sleeper who flops from her side to her stomach, I found the Nectar comfortable when I shifted positions. Sleeping prone provided me with sufficient support along my pelvis so my stomach didn't dip below the rest of my body. However, back sleeping resulted in my lower back sinking too much for my comfort. (For context, I'm 5ft 4in, around 150lbs, with most of my weight concentrated in my midsection and thighs.) Another tester who slept on a queen Nectar Mattress had a similar experience, which made rolling over when changing sleep position a bit of an effort for them.

Testing pressure relief using a 50lb kettlebell during our Nectar Mattress review

(Image credit: Future / Alison Barretta)

Although the Nectar offers some of that classic memory foam contouring, it doesn't have that very slow-response, 'quicksand' feel. To further assess pressure relief, I placed a 50lb kettlebell in the center of my Nectar Mattress. The weight sunk about three inches, somewhat deep for a medium firm bed. However, the surface quickly snapped back into shape upon removing the weight, a testament to the responsiveness of the top cover and the foam layer directly beneath it.

There's ample pressure relief with the Nectar Mattress, but it does depend on your sleeping position and body type. Even though it's made with foam, which typically has a different feel to innerspring or hybrids, the Nectar Mattress is surprisingly firm for what it is. Lighter side sleepers (under 130lbs) may find it too firm around the hips and shoulders; on the flip side, heavier back and stomach sleepers (over 230lbs) might sink too much and fall out of alignment.

Nectar Mattress review: Performance

  • Decent cooling, but chronic overheaters should look elsewhere
  • Good motion isolation, fine for couples
  • Okay but not amazing edge support

As well as assessing how comfortable and supportive the Nectar mattress is, I also tested for a range of other key performance factors. Namely: temperature regulation (important if you struggle with overheating at night), motion isolation (relevant for light sleepers and bed-sharers) and edge support (important if you want to be able to use the full sleep surface). Here's how I got on…

Temperature regulation

The original Nectar Mattress featured a breathable Tencel cover, but in 2021 it was replaced with a specialized cooling cover woven with heat-wicking polyethylene fibers. Despite not feeling cool to the touch – which isn't always a reliable indicator of how well a mattress will regulate temperature overall anyway – the Nectar did an excellent job of keeping me comfortably dry, which is a remarkable feat for a standard all-foam mattress.

When I tested my Nectar Mattress in May 2023, temperatures in my part of the Mid-Atlantic region averaged around 50 degrees Fahrenheit, though there were brief spurts of unseasonably warm weather. I dressed my mattress in cotton sheets and a mid-weight polyester comforter, and kept the temperature in my room around 71 degrees Fahrenheit.

A close-up of the cooling cover of the Nectar Mattress

A closer look at the cooling cover of the Nectar Mattress. (Image credit: Future / Alison Barretta)

Now, I tend to overheat yet I can't sleep soundly unless I'm wrapped in covers. Throughout my testing period, I didn't wake up hot and bothered once. A couple of other testers on my panel, who also sleep warm, had no complaints about overheating when sleeping on their queen Nectar Mattress. It isn't noticeably cooler than room temperature, but the quilted polyblend cover does a good job of keeping the mattress at a neutral to slightly cool temperature.

That said, if you deal with hot flashes every night, you'd be better off with a dedicated cooling mattress like the Nectar Premier Copper. (Learn more about this model in our article: Should I buy the Nectar Premier Copper Mattress?) Alternatively, the Cocoon by Sealy Chill is similar in cost and construction to the original Nectar but features more specialty materials to help regulate temperature.

  • Temperature score: 4 out of 5

Motion isolation

Motion transfer is about whether you feel your co-sleeper (or pet) shifting around on the other side of the bed. Really well-designed foam mattresses will have good motion isolation ratings as the foam will be solidly held in a surrounding core for stability. Flimsy foam models, however, tend to have more motion transfer because they aren’t as solid, thick, or deep.

For this review I slept on a twin bed, which can only capably support one person at a time. To test the motion transfer of my Nectar Mattress, I placed an empty wine glass at the center of the bed, then dropped a 10lb weight from six inches high at three distances away from the glass to simulate the effects of a co-sleeper shifting positions and getting in or out of bed.

Nectar Mattress review motion isolation test

(Image credit: Future / Alison Barretta)

I noticed a slight wobble when the weight was dropped four inches away from the empty wine glass, indicating that you might notice when your partner moves close to you. However, the movement diminished the farther away we dropped the weight. At 12 inches, the glass briefly shook but quickly stabilized; at 25 inches away, it remained steady. 

Despite some motion transfer at closer distances, the glass never fell. The weight didn't bounce significantly, either, which shows just how well the Nectar absorbs movement. Based on these results, I'd recommend the Nectar Mattress for couples who share a bed with a squirmy partner or operate on different sleep schedules.

  • Motion isolation score: 4.5 out of 5

Edge support

Edge support is an important factor to consider if you like taking up as much space as possible on your bed, or if you need to use your mattress to help you push off when getting up in the morning. How the edge of the bed acts under compression is a good indicator of a quality mattress, and weaker, sloping edges are a common problem among memory foam models. 

To test the Nectar's edge support, I placed a 50lb weight on the middle perimeter and bottom corner of my twin mattress. It compressed about 2.5 inches, either way, with a bulge in the top cover. Once I removed the weight, the mattress snapped back into form. Another TechRadar reviewer conducted the same test with a queen Nectar Mattress and had the same result.

Testing edge support for a Nectar memory foam mattress

(Image credit: Future / Alison Barretta)

Likewise, sitting on the edge of the Nectar was comfortable, with only a little give. You can certainly sit on the edge of this one without discomfort or risk of slipping off, although I personally would have liked a little more support in this area since I sit at the edge of my bed for a moment before getting up for the day.

For exceptional edge support, you'll want to consider a hybrid mattress with reinforced springs. (The Nectar is available in a hybrid.) If you prefer memory foam, the Cocoon by Sealy Chill offers above-average edge support, as does the Siena memory foam mattress, which is Nectar's budget-friendly sibling.

  • Edge support score: 3.5 out of 5

Nectar Mattress review: Customer service

  • Free delivery, option to upgrade to Premium In-Home Setup
  • Delivered rolled and boxed, can take 72hrs to fully expand
  • Very generous extras – full year’s trial and lifetime warranty

The Nectar is a bed in a box mattress, which means it ships in a sturdy cardboard carton, which allows you to easily maneuver the mattress through your home before unwrapping it. The brand supplies a small plastic cutting tool to help open the tough, vacuum-sealed plastic. 

Nectar Mattress in its box

(Image credit: Future / Alison Barretta)

A twin Nectar memory foam mattress weighs 39lbs, and I was able to manage it on my own. However, a queen weighs 66lbs while a king is 84lbs. For those sizes, you'll want additional help with setup, especially if you live alone and/or have mobility issues. Nectar offers a Premium In-Home Setup service for $199, which includes delivery to a room of your choice plus optional removal of your current mattress, a notable perk for a lower mid-range mattress like Nectar.

According to the brand, Nectar mattresses take between 24 and 72 hours to fully expand which is longer than average compared to other foam beds on the market. Although I found my Nectar comfortable to sleep on 12 hours post-unboxing, I recommended waiting at least five hours for the desired medium-firm feel to develop. Unboxing immediately before bedtime will result in a much plusher feel.

Nectar mattress rolled up in plastic on a platform bed

(Image credit: Future / Alison Barretta)

New foam mattresses are often prone to off-gassing as a chemical or plastic smell is released when you unpack them, signaling VOCs (volatile organic compounds) being let out. I detected an obvious odor upon unfurling my mattress, although it disappeared about two hours after I cracked open a window. This was in contrast to another tester who didn't experience any noticeable smell when setting up her Nectar mattress, although she was in a much larger room than mine. When it comes to off-gassing, your mileage will vary.

Once your mattress has been delivered, you'll have a full year to test it out and make sure it's the right fit for you. This trial matches the longest on the market, and is extremely generous for a mattress in this price bracket. The Nectar also comes with a forever warranty – again matching the best you'll find anywhere. 

  • Customer service score: 4.5 out of 5

Nectar Mattress review: Specs

Nectar Mattress review: Other reviews

  • Nectar’s full range has a 4.7/5 average over ~59K reviews (Nov 2023)
  • No way to filter by product on Nectar site 
  • Positive reviews praise soothing memory foam feel

Beyond my experience and that of my fellow expert testers, what do customers think of the Nectar Mattress? As of November 2023, there are more than 59,000 user reviews on the Nectar website, with an average star rating of 4.7 out of 5. Annoyingly, these reviews cover the full mattress range, and I can't be confident which product any given review is talking about. However, it does speak highly of customers' opinions of Nectar's products as a whole. 

The Nectar Original is also sold at Amazon, where it has accumulated over 6,000 reviews and a 4.3 out of 5-star average (Nov 2023). Again, though, the reviews cover several Nectar models, making it difficult to draw definite conclusions.

Given the Nectar original all-foam reviewed here is likely to be the biggest seller, and therefore the subject of most reviews, I still scoured the comments to see if I could pull out any themes. 

The Nectar Memory Foam shown at an angle so you can see the white cover and Nectar logo on the deep blue base

(Image credit: Nectar Sleep)

Reviews are overwhelmingly positive. A number of customers call out value for money, and say Nectar's sink-in memory foam has helped them sleep better. Some shoppers even claim that the Nectar relieved their back or hip pain (here's what to look for in a mattress if you have back pain). The majority of 5-star reviews come from self-proclaimed side sleepers, to give you an indication of who'll benefit most from this mattress.

While many people love the feeling of sinking into the Nectar's memory foam, it's worth flagging that if you're used to innersprings, this sensation can take a little getting used to. Among the negative comments, most focus on the mattress either feeling too soft or too firm. While some mattress brands offer different firmness choices, you only have one option here. But the 1-year mattress trial is there to take advantage of if it turns out you don't get on with the sleep feel. 

Another comment that crops up a few times is a lack of support for heavier people (over 230lb). Some reviewers also noticed an off-gassing smell, which lasted for several hours to several days, and a few found that their Nectar mattress slept a bit warm. 

Updated to reflect new version tests: June 2023
First reviewed: February 2022

Should you buy the Nectar Mattress?

Buy it if…

✅ You're a side sleeper: This mattress' testing panel all found the Nectar mattress most comfortable for side sleeping. The plush top layer, with light cradling, creates a comfortable yet supportive sleep surface in this position. 

You want a great value memory foam mattress: For me, the Nectar hits the sweet spot between quality and price, and is a great option if you're looking for an all-foam mattress that will last. The year-long trial and forever warranty amp up your value for money, and offer peace of mind when it comes to ordering, too. 

You share a bed: The cradling memory foams in the Nectar mattress absorb movements very effectively, and ensure motion doesn't reverberate across the sleep surface. That's great news for bed-sharers, and especially those who are also light sleepers or are operating on different schedules. 

Don't buy it if…

❌ You sleep warm: The Nectar offers decent temperature regulation, but if you really struggle with overheating then the Cocoon Chill is a better choice. It has a very similar design as the Nectar, but with the important difference of a phase-change cover, which the testers in our Cocoon by Sealy Chill review found did a very effective job of wicking away excess heat. That model basically the same price as the Nectar, and is the top budget option in TechRadar's best cooling mattress guide. See exactly how the two compare in our Nectar vs Cocoon Chill mattress face-off. 

You want the best of the best: If your budget allows, consider checking out the Saatva Classic mattress. This luxury innerspring hybrid-and-foam bed comes in three different firmness levels (plush soft, luxury firm, and firm) and two height profiles (11.5 inches or 14.5 inches) so you can tailor it to your preferences. It's considerably pricier than the Nectar, though. 

You need something cheaper: The Nectar is great value for money, but it's not the cheapest mattress on the market. Shoppers seeking a real bargain should check out the Siena Memory Foam mattress. This bed is from the same parent brand as the Nectar, and offers quality over and above what you'd expect for its low price tag. It sits right at the top of TechRadar's best cheap mattress ranking. 

You weigh over 230lb: The medium-firm, all-foam build of the Nectar won't be supportive enough for heavy bodies. If you weigh over 230lb, head to TechRadar's roundup of the best mattresses for heavy bodies for some sturdier alternative recommendations.

Nectar Mattress review: Also consider

 

Source: https://www.techradar.com/reviews/nectar-mattress

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