A few times a week last fall my preschooler, Annika, would wake us up at some ungodly hour complaining that her mattress was “pushing on my body!” (in the way only very dramatic 4-year olds can). When pressed to describe what, exactly, was wrong with it, she said “it’s too pokey!” We had the same one on the guest bed that seemed fine so I shrugged it off as one of many creative excuses to stall bedtime – until one night when I stretched out on her bed for story time. Guess what? That mattress was pokey. So much so that I could feel individual springs in some places <insert mom guilt here>. It was one of those inexpensive big box store spring mattresses that we bought in a panic when we needed to transition her from the crib in time for the baby; I figured it would last at least a year. Turns out it didn’t stand up to nightly use even by a 25 lb kid.
So I started looking around online for a new mattress with a few criteria in mind – breathable because my kid’s a sweaty sleeper, firmer since she missed that from the crib mattress and reasonably priced. Googling led me to a bunch of reviews for the foam type of “mattress in a box” and I was definitely intrigued. A lot of the marketing for these mattresses are aimed at adults but they checked off all the boxes on my list. At first it seemed kind of fancy for a kid’s bed, but if you’re replacing cheaper mattresses every few years – assuming the kid’s sleeping under your roof for at least 18 – math favors a better quality mattress. I landed on Leesa because it claims better airflow and had great reviews for firm support (also I’m more than in love with the soft gray & white striped cover). Want to see what happened when we opened the box?
Full disclosure: This is not a sponsored post, all opinions are mine (& Annika’s). Leesa provided product in exchange for an honest review.
Mattress day was a big event at our house if you couldn’t tell. We were amazed it how quickly it went from flat to jump-worthy!
I noticed a faint foam odor when we first opened the mattress but it’s not toxic, see point below on foam safety; letting it air out for a few hours before putting sheets on definitely helped. The first night she was actually excited for bedtime. (But did she stay there? Nope – turns out that’s not part of Leesa’s 10 yr warranty. The middle of the night visits definitely dropped off quickly, which is more important!) When I did the rounds that night Annika was pretty warm and I worried about the airflow claims – luckily(?) she just had a minor fever. I asked her what she would tell other kids about the Leesa mattress and she immediately yelled “IT FEELS LIKE A MARSHMALLOW!” And it totally does – but more like the homemade Pinterest-y kind – thicker, loftier, more substance and less give than the easily squished standard ones. I finally got to test drive it when she had a sleepover at grandma’s and found it pretty firm but still cozy as it molds to fit your body. In the morning I woke up on my side and did have a little stiffness in my hip but I’m used to sleeping on our softer foam/spring hybrid mattress. Side note: My husband also spent a day recuperating from vasectomy, the sequel (anyone in Boston need a Dr. non-recommendation?) while Anni was at school and gave it two Vicodin-fueled thumbs up.
Things to know about buying a foam mattress for kids:
- The lighter the person, the firmer the mattress will feel. In the case of kids that liked the firm feel of a crib mattress, they’ll love this one.
- It’s taller than the previous budget mattress we had – at least 1.5x higher (for a quick measure, see pic below – I have average-sized hands and very scientifically calculated the mattress to be just under 3 lady-hands tall. Actual measurements on Leesa’s site if you’re the numbers type.)
- It’s great for platform and slat-style beds (what we’re using) since box springs aren’t recommended with the foam mattress.
- The foam should be CertiPUR-US certified, which means low-VOC and free from dangerous fire retardants, heavy metals, formaldehyde and other yucky stuff. Before buying, check here for a list of certified brands – all the major foam ‘mattress-in-a-box’ makers are on it.
I’d recommend Leesa as a good quality mattress for kids that will last at least a decade. We’re planning to get another next year when baby sister is done with the crib – fingers crossed the little daredevil stays contained that long!
If you want to try one out, you can use The Mom Edit’s link for $75 off (also 10% military discount with a Troop Card).
It’s been a while since we talked about cool kid’s sheets, so long in fact that some of my faves are on sale! Lots of good stuff in the Winter White Sales this time of year.
Cool Kid’s Sheets on Sale