Review of the Leesa Mattress

Disclaimer: This is my personal honest review of my Leesa Mattress. Please note that the links back to the Leesa website giving you a discount (best offer available on the day) are affiliate links. This means I get a commission if you buy via my link. This is no way affects my objectivity and you still get a discount. Just making this clear!

The Company

Leesa Sleep started as an American based company who began selling mattresses in the USA in 2014. They began selling a UK manufactured version in the UK in 2016. The company was founded by David Wolfe and Jamie Diamonstein (both British). Jamie is part of the family that own Paramount Mattress Inc which has been in the mattress business since 1974.

The Headlines:

Avena Foam, Mattress in a box, 100 night trial (30 night minimum). Free pickup if you don’t want to keep it. 10 year warranty. One in ten mattresses donated to needy causes.

Regional Differences

Some companies can have very different mattresses in different countries, especially comparing Europe to USA and Canada. The Eve mattress for example is very different between continents. Leesa however appears to have the same specifications wherever it is sold. The size of the layers is the same. However the actual foams are sourced differently, the UK ones do not carry the CertiPUR certification for low VOCs (volatile organic compounds or the smells that they give off) that the USA version has. The UK mattress uses Reach approved fire retardant chemicals. Reach is the European Union regulation concerning the Registration, Evaluation, Authorisation and restriction of Chemicals

Stores

You can try and buy Leesa in selected West Elm stores.

More mattresses from Leesa

Leesa also do a high end mattress called the Leesa Luxury Hybrid Mattress, you can read about it here

Leesa Mattress

Leesa Mattress: Thoughts

How it all works:

Leesa make a big play of their ethical credentials and Leesa in the USA donates one mattress for every ten it sells to a family, shelter or individual in need, and plants a tree for every mattress it sells. In the UK they donate one mattress to a shelter for every ten they sell.

Arrival:

Being a bed-in-a-box means the Leesa mattress comes in a big oblong box. The mattress is flattened and then vacuum packed at point of manufacture. Once taken out of the box you must carefully cut the plastic wrapper to allow it to expand. It will reach full height after a few hours but owing to the high VOC emissions in these foam mattresses it is best to allow the mattress to air for 48 hours before sleeping on it.

The Mattress:

Uk version is manufactured in UK (Derbyshire), USA version is produced in the USA. Leesa is the classic modern foam configuration. Three layers starting with the top polyurethane foam (aka polyfoam) layer, the middle memory foam layer and the bottom firmer base layer. So what is the unique selling point for the Leesa? First off they call their polyfoam layer Avena foam. Avena foam is indeed a patented version of polyfoam. I cannot find exactly what the patent covers but the nature of producing a polyurethane foam leaves a lot of room to alter the pouring method and/or the many additives used to arrive at a proprietary version of polyfoam. The middle open cell memory foam layer is the standard moderate density and again a standard base firmer base layer of lower density. The use of mixed type foams is called hybrid by some people however for me hybrid is the mix of foam and springs or a mix of very different materials rather than different types of foam.

The Layers:

It should be noted here that Leesa Sleep are very forthcoming and open about their specifications. This is not the norm in this industry where the actual foam specs are often closely guarded.

Cover:

The cover is 100% polyester and is a one piece cover using material sourced in the Netherlands. My personal preference is for a removable top section for easier cleaning and removal. The light blue/grey colour is a step-up from the grey/white combinations that are so common. Leesa also add their own branding with four stripes at one end. This allows you to identify which end you have been using when rotating the mattress to increase longevity. I also find the strips simple but aesthetically pleasing in an understated way as oppose to the in-your-face-yellow of the Eve mattress.
Note that while I see some reviews still refer to a polyester/lycra blend my own mattress was 100% polyester according to the label.

Leesa Mattress Layers
Leesa Layers

Top Layer:

UK: 5 cm (2 inches) Avena® Foam. Density: 3.1 PCF or 50 kg/m3

IFD (same as ILD) is the indentation force deflection measurement 20 is the higher end of the medium soft range.
This top layer is one of the big selling points of the Leesa mattress, that Avena® foam top layer. This is actually a trademark for a company called Carpenter Co. although Leesa appear to be the only company using this foam in a mattress. It is actually a patented form of polyurethane foam. How their product differs from a standard polyfoam is not clear though i endeavor to find out. The important point to take is that its main difference to other mattresses I have tried is that it includes a series of holes and end to end cut outs to enhance air circulation and thus cooling. This also has the effect of making the foam slightly softer as removing some of the foam to enable this reduces the overall density and thus some longevity. However note that the density figures quoted are said to be after the holes have been created (according to Leesa support) so are still accurate, just that without those holes density would be higher. This type of removing sections of the foam is known as convoluted foam and can have several reasons for use in the manufacturing and design process. Some things are clear however, less foam is used and results in reduced costs, air circulation is improved resulting better cooling, the feel of the foam is altered (softer) and density/longevity is reduced compared to using a solid slab of the same foam. The specs are very similar to the top layer of the Casper but Leesa has a 5 cm (2 inch) layer as oppose to the 3.8 cm (1.5 inch) of the Casper. The feel is very similar but Leesa ultimately feels a tad softer but slightly worse spot relief (area of affect). This is good for side sleepers however with more give on the shoulder area.

Second Layer:

UK: 5 cm (2 inches) Memory Foam. Density: 3.1 PCF or 50 kg/m3

This is a standard memory foam density for that second layer. Placing the memory foam below the Avena polyfoam gives the leesa mattress more bounce/spring than if the memory foam was on top. Preference will be a personal thing but this configuration will be cooler and better for sex than a top memory foam layer. The downside is memory foam has better pressure relieving properties which is preferable if you have particular aches and pains issues. However the density of this layer is indeed more suited to a middle layer, top layers would normally be 75 kg/m3 for a quality memory foam.

Base Layer:

UK: 15 cm (6 inches) polyurethane foam. Density: 2.1 PCF or 33 kg/m3

This is the firm base layer. According to the given specs this would be the biggest difference between the UK and USA Leesa versions. If this is right it could be explained by the general consensus that the USA prefers a softer mattress than in the UK. The density could difference could result in a softer feel but without knowing the full specs I can only guess. Having the base layer in this spec of course means you have a large choice of where to place the mattress with only slats with a wide gap being a no go. Of course placing a mattress on a floor is also never a good idea because of the lack of air circulation and hygiene issues. Leesa themselves say this:
Our mattresses are designed to deliver their signature feel sitting on a firm, flat, and sturdy surface. Below are the best options to support your mattress:
The Leesa Foundation ( a flat box like base)
A solid platform
A solid box spring/foundation
A Bunkie board on a traditional box spring
A slatted base

Total Height:

official height 25 cm ( 10 inches)
This is an interesting one, my Leesa is actually 24 cm (9.5 inches) high. The layers are as spec’d at 5 cm, 5 cm and 10 cm. However because of the way the top convoluted layer is glued to the memory foam you lose 1cm, it becomes in affect depressed by 1 cm.

Average Density: 40 kg/m3

Weights of the mattresses as provided by Leesa Sleep:
The containing box will weigh 3 kg.

Mattress weights:

Single 20 kg
EU Single 21 kg
Double 31 kg
EU Double 33 kg
King 34 kg
EU King 37 kg
Super king 40 kg
I wonder if those weights above provided by Leesa include the box? My Euro Single Leesa weighs in at 18kg plus 1.5 kg for the cover. So that is a total of 19.5 kg. Using that weight the average density comes out at  around 41 kg/m3 and the other weights would be:
single 18.5 kg
eu single 19.5 kg
double 28 kg
eu double 30 kg
king 32.5 kg
eu king 35 kg
super king 39 kg

Mattress Thoughts

The overall specification holds up well in this sector, budget online mattresses and bed-in-a-box. While the main two layers offer an average density the size of the layers is deeper than some nearest competitors. This means the total amount of foam and total weight is a little more than some others offering greater longevity. The use of aerated Avena foam is also a standout offering better cooling over the nearest competitors. I make this conclusion by working out what the weights should be according to the specs (density times the size), I have found published weights generally to be unreliable.

Tests and Analysis:

Edge support:

You cant expect too much from a foam mattress in terms of edge support. Leesa is average for edge support, very similar to Emma Original, Casper and Simba. Behind the firmer mattresses such as Bruno, Eve and Otty.

Score: 7.5/10

Firmness (sinkage):

I test the firmness using 20kg, 30kg and 40kg weights. At all weights Leesa has more give (softness) than Otty, Bruno, Eve and Emma Original. The top Avena foam layer is noticeably softer than other polyurethane foam top layer mattresses due to the holes this layer across its surface. Leesa probably strikes more of a center ground in terms of mattress feel than most, not too soft not to firm, occupying the Goldilocks zone in may ways for firmness. Leesa is firmer than Emma Hybrid, Casper and Simba. It should be noted that you will need to lay on a mattress for some time to truly compare firmness. Many mattresses continue to sink and give as you lay on it for up to several hours. The difference can be significant from the first few minutes. I mention this because Leesa changes very little after the first few minutes compared to most mattresses I have tried. This means for example if you was to lay on the Leesa mattress and then switch to say a Simba mattress, they would appear closer in firmness than they would after a nights sleep. Something to bear in mind when trying to compare firmness in a showroom.

Firmness 7.5/10

Leesa Mattress Firmness test

Cooling:

This will be a win for the Leesa against other top layer polyurethane foam mattresses. The Avena foam used has a series of holes in grid like pattern through the top/bottom. Along the end to end the Avena layer has channels running the whole length. This all adds up to improved air flow and thus better cooling. While polyurethane foam can never be as good as latex for cooling the design certainly makes it a winner for a polyfoam mattress.

8/10 for cooling

Spot Relief (point elasticity):

This is a measure of how well the foam can cradle the body. Or how well it conforms to those areas exerting greater pressure. For example giving way around your hips but not giving way outside of that high pressure area. I had to mark Leesa down a little in this area. While the spot relief is good, it isn’t quite as good as many of its contemporaries with more foam being depressed outside of the area actually being pushed down on. This could be a side affect of the holes and channels in the top layer and the flip side of the improved cooling. Similar to Casper and better than Emma Hybrid but behind most others I have tried.

7/10 for spot relief

Mattress for Sex/Bounce:

As far as foam goes there is a clear order as to what is preferable for a mattress that is good for sex. Latex, Polyfoam then Memory Foam. In truth memory foam is awful for sex assuming your qualities in a mattress for this are good bounce with some comfort. Not a trampoline nor a concrete floor. Leesa is on the softer side for a polyfoam top layer due to the convoluted nature of the Avena foam layer. Because this polyfoam is softer than average and is directly on a memory foam layer the mattress a whole is less bouncy than what would appear to be similar specified mattresses such as the Casper or Emma. Indeed it was a surprise to me than Leesa is less bouncy than the memory foam top layer Eve mattress.
I should say at this point while naming Latex as better than polyfoam for sex, a mattress like Simba has little bounce despite a latex top layer. However the latex Bruno mattress is exceptionally bouncy and the best for sex that I have so far tried but may be too bouncy for some and it might feel a little too firm on the comfort side. For this reason I have Otty as equally good as Bruno for sex because although its a little less springy it has a little more comfort.
I have to mark Leesa slightly down in this category of best mattress for sex though with the qualification it is not bad but just below average.

7/10 for sex/bounce

Weight Capacity:

18 stone (114 kg). This is just a guide. This about the weight they think the mattress loses its supportive properties.

Motion Transference:

This is the amount of movement across the mattress when someone turns or falls down onto it, in other words how much movement your partner can expect to feel as you move around. Bounce and foam density are factors here as is the type of foam used. Memory foam will be best for motion transference as it has a dead feel with little bounce. Leesa with its top Avena foam layer has some bounce but a little less so than say the similar Casper mattress, though there isn’t much in it. Leesa kills much of the motion you will feel but not totally. It is better than Casper and Bruno and on a par with Emma Hybrid and Otty. Not as good as the likes of Simba, Emma Original and Eve.

7.5/10 for motion transfer

Type of Sleepers this mattress suits:

Leesa is perhaps one of the better all round mattresses I have tried. That is not to say its the best no matter what type of sleeper you are but that it isn’t poor in any sleeping position. For example Emma Original, Bruno and Eve are a little firm on the shoulder area for my liking and Leesa is better if you spend more time on your side. It is also fine on your back or stomach sleeping as it does not sag too much which would be bad for front sleepers and is great for back sleepers with the right amount of support. However note that being a medium firm mattress heavier individuals will find stomach sleeping might not be ideal on Leesa. Also lighter individuals side sleeping might find the give at shoulders not quite enough. It will come down to your size and shape.

Back sleepers 8/10 Side sleepers 8/10 Front sleepers 8/10

Leesa Sleep Positions

Price:

This is a hard category to score because advertised retail prices and actual prices after discounts vary widely. Also quality differs too and for this reason I just give the average retail price for the range and rank for price of mattresses I have reviewed. Leesa isn’t the cheapest or the most expensive for this type of online bed in a box mattress. Well priced for what you get.

Average price: £659

Materials/Design:

While the foam densities are pretty standard the use of Avena foam with design elements for better cooling are a definite plus over say the Casper with a standard polyurethane foam top layer. Strictly speaking good latex is still preferable but certainly Leesa offers better cooling than a standard polyfoam top layer. There is no zoning here which can help even more in the shoulder area. For the price level though Leesa offers a good middle ground with decent sized top layers. 10 cm of comfort layers is what I consider the right amount. Simba for example have 9 cm of comfort layer, Eve just 6 cm and Emma Original even less at 5 cm.

7.5/10

Off-gassing/Smell:

Off gassing or the smell of a foam mattress is the result of the leeching of chemicals used in the production process. Often referred to as VOCs or volatile organic compounds. All mattresses will have some chemicals added whether as part of the production or for government regulation for fire safety etc. Of course the use of chemicals is highest in all synthetic products such as these polyurethane foam mattresses. Not quite as bad as it sounds since most chemicals leech out over the first 48 hours and the most harmful chemicals are of course government regulated. Some companies reduce the VOC content by using foams certified low in VOCs such as the certipur certification. I mark this score by how much smell lasted past the first 48 hours and whether certified low VOC foam was used or natural latex etc. To be honest I personally haven’t had any real issues with this from the vast majority of mattresses I have purchased in the UK. Leesa was much like most polyfoam mattresses for me and no noticeable smells after the first 48 hours.

7/10 for smells

Comfort:

This must be viewed as highly subjective. We all prefer a different feel from a mattress, have our individual sleeping habits, our personal aches and pains which we want to ease pressure on. As long as you maintain a healthy spinal alignment there is no good or bad in a mattress if you find the right one for your body. That is to say depending on your height, shape and weight the same mattress will feel different to each individual. Personally I am 13 stone, 82kg or 182lbs. For me as a back and side sleeper I found the Leesa mattress very comfortable in any position. The only reason I switched from Leesa to Casper was because Casper is slightly softer which I find more comfortable. The softer ones such as Simba and Emma Hybrid are just too soft to give enough support to hold my hips up when on my back. However I would add that I found Leesa the best all round mattress I have tried so far (as I write this) and I am not saying Casper is better, just that they suit me personally more. So was my Leesa comfortable? One of the more comfortable mattresses I have tried? Yes it was. Also note that while softer mattresses don’t have enough support for my lower back the closest I have come to a soft mattress with decent support is the Nectar.

Zoning:

There is no zoning on the Leesa. However it has decent all round attributes so I didn’t miss having more give in any particular area.

Summary:

Itemout of 10
Edge Support7.5
Firmness7.5 (medium)
Cooling 8
Spot Relief 7
Sex/Bounce 7
Motion Transference7.5
Back Sleepers 8
Side Sleepers 8
Stomach Sleepers 8
PriceAverage price: £659
Materials/Design7.5
Smell/off-gassing7
Zoning:none
Average Density:40 kg/m3

Prices:

TypePrice
Single£450
EU Single£470
Double£650
EU Double£670
King£750
EU King£770
Super King£850

General Mattress Notes:

Overall I have to give Leesa a thumbs up recommendation. Perhaps more confidently than any other mattress I have tried to date, I think it strikes the Goldilocks ground of just right for most people. However that is not to say its the perfect mattress and everyone will be happy with it. Indeed you only have to read the reviews on their website to see plenty of people are still unhappy with the mattress. This really tells the true story of the mattress world, everyone is different and has different expectations. You wont find a single mattress that someone isn’t happy with. Plenty of people complain that Leesa sleeps hot, but it is relative. Memory foam sleeps very hot, polyfoam less so and latex less so again. The Leesa has some design methods that reduce heat retention making it cooler than many other polyfoams but heat retention is near unavoidable in a foam mattress. Personally I found it fine for cooling but then I sleep in a cool room, it is all relative. Even your body type will lend itself to giving off more heat so some people have this heat retention issue more than others. In some ways Leesa may be a good starting ground for an online mattress to gauge just what will suit you best as it is in the middle ground for most qualities. Once you have tried it out you know if you are looking for something firmer, softer, cooler, more give via zoning etc. One thing to remember is that top cover is not removable on its own, this is a shame since it makes cleaning much easier, and of course the removal itself easier since these mattresses are not light to maneuver. I ended up sending my Leesa back and I have to say this was a straightforward process with everything handled by Leesa. I also found it refreshing how Leesa Sleep are upfront on all aspects of the mattress and happy to give out technical information. I can tell you some companies will tell you none of these details and some don’t actually seem to know the details, at least the support staff don’t anyway.

Iterations

Leesa appear to have not changed their specs since they started in 2014 so all reviews are still relevant. This is something to watch with some mattresses that change configuration frequently making past reviews not relevant. For example Casper and Eve today are quite different from their original versions.

Website

They Say:

The Leesa Mattress is simply the best premium foam mattress you can buy for under £1,000 I think one must take this tongue in cheek, much like the Eve claim to be the worlds most comfortable mattress.

They Say:

Leesa is built-to-order in 2 – 5 business days This is about the standard delivery and lead in time for an online mattress.

They Say:

The Leesa mattress is a completely redesigned mattress from the inside out This is a claim I see on a lot of mattress websites. I think its safe to say it is not a redesign from inside out, but its a proprietary combination of foams. Tempur for example have been using memory foam since 1991, polyfoam has been used since the 1950s.

Remember,

Leesa has a top polyfoam layer. This means it will feel springier than memory foam but less springy than a typical latex foam.

Warranty Highlights

  • 10 Year Limited Warranty
  • only valid if you are the original purchaser
  • should be set-up on a solid base or foundation substantial enough to support the mattress and anyone sleeping on it
  • Warranty covers visible indentation greater than one (1) inch that is not associated with an indentation or sag as a result of an improper or unsupportive foundation or base.
  • Warranty covers permanent damage to the foam from a physical flaw in the mattress.
  • Warranty does not apply to a normal increase in softness of the foam and does not affect the pressure-relieving quality of the Product.

Leesa vs Bruno

Leesa has a lot less bounce and spring than Bruno. Bruno has that cool sleeping latex, Leesa has a slightly warmer sleeping polyfoam top layer but has holes across the surface closing the gap on latex in terms of sleeping cool. Leesa is a softer feeling mattress.

Leesa vs Casper

Both very similar feel but Leesa is slightly firmer and  cooler. Casper a tiny bit better for side sleepers and similar spot relief. Leesa slightly better overall materials, possible better longevity (based on Avena foam tests). Casper top cover removable. Casper advertised prices cheaper.

Leesa vs Emma Hybrid

Emma Hybrid is softer than Leesa and has a little more bounce. Leesa has slightly better spot relief. Airgocell vs Avena foam. Emmas airgocell is said to have larger pores in the cells which means more air and so better cooling while Avena foam has holes throughout also to aid cooling. Emma has zoning.

Leesa vs Emma Original

Emma Original is firmer than Leesa. Emma has Airgocell which is a polyfoam said to have good cooling properties. Leesa has Avena foam with holes in so has good airflow for cooling. Emma is slightly more bouncy with better spot relief.

Leesa vs Eve

Both have a middle memory foam layer and polyfoam layer on top. Leesa has holes on its top layer to aid cooling. Eve is firmer than Leesa. Eve is better for motion transference and spot relief. Both have similar bounce. Eve is CertiPur certified while Leesa has a higher average density.

Leesa vs Nectar

Leesa is firmer, uses Avena foam (polyfoam) for the top layer but adds holes so is better for cooling. Leesa is bouncier but Nectar has better pressure relief and point elasticity. Nectar is of course a memory foam mattress. Nectar is softer than Leesa.

Leesa vs Otty

Leesa has the high resilience avena polyfoam on top, Otty has the gel memory foam top layer. Both top layers have holes so Leesa offers better cooling overall. Otty is firmer than Leesa and has more bounce. Leesa has more give and is better suited to side sleepers than Otty for shoulders. Leesa is all foam, Otty has pocket springs.

Leesa vs Simba

Leesa is all foam, polyurethane and memory foam. Simba is a true hybrid combining mini pocket springs, memory foam and latex. Leesa has a firmer feel. Simba is not suitable for most stomach sleepers due to its softness. Latex and springs makes Simba potentially better for cooling. Simba advertised prices are higher. Leesa has more bounce than Simba.