Most people can recall at least one night of horrible sleep due to an air mattress that was flimsy, wobbly, and not at all supportive. That's why it's crucial to know what features to look for when seeking out the most comfortable air mattresses.
The two main factors to consider when purchasing an air mattress are 1) how quickly it inflates and deflates and 2) how well it prevents leaks. A quality air mattress should inflate and deflate in five minutes or less, and it should always feel comfortable, with a customizable firmness. You should be able to alter the amount of air in your mattress — even after inflating it — to achieve your desired firmness. The most effective option for this? One that comes with a built-in pump. However, you can work with something that uses an external pump if need-be.
While an air mattress will never provide the same level of comfort as a standard bed, ideally it won't deflate throughout the night. The highest quality air mattresses remain firmly inflated for several days, and some budget mattresses even come with a secure valve that prevents leakage.
So, whether you're hosting guests for a few days or you need the best air mattress for camping, here are four of the most comfortable inflatable beds to help you get a quality night's sleep.
1. The Overall Most Comfortable Air Mattress
SoundAsleep Products Dream Series Air Mattress
Why it's great: With nearly 15,000 reviews on Amazon, this comfortable air mattress features supportive air coils that provide extra firmness, making it feel just like you're sleeping in a regular bed. It also has a suction design on the bottom, which means it'll stay securely in place throughout the night.
The mattress is capable of holding up to 500 pounds, and setting it up is oh-so easy. It comes with a quiet, built-in air pump that'll have it fully inflated (or deflated) in under four minutes. Plus, thanks to the thick layers and tear-resistant material, it'll stay fully firm and inflated for days.
What fans say: "I purchased this air bed in the Queen size for guests who were visiting for 5 nights ... They commented on how comfortable it was and how well they slept after the first night. One of our guests commented that the raised sides of the mattress were 'genius' because she didn't feel as if she would roll over and off the mattress all together like other air beds."
- Available sizes: Twin, Queen
2. The Runner-Up: Another Super Comfortable Air Mattress With A Built-In Pillow
King Koil Luxury Raised Air Mattress
Why it's great: Like the SoundAsleep option, this elevated air mattress from King Koil features 40 coils (in the queen size) and a built-in pillow for an extra-supportive surface. It also has an enhanced-grip bottom that prevents sliding — even if you tend to toss and turn at night. While the durable mattress is designed to be resist rips and punctures, it does come with a kit for repairing the rare tear.
The built-in air pump provides seamless inflation in four minutes or less. (Pro tip: You can inflate or deflate the bed in increments to achieve your preferred firmness.) It also comes with an external valve for outdoor use, though the bed's size might make it too cumbersome for camping.
What fans say: "I didn't think it was possible to not be miserable on an air mattress until I got this. I got it for the height, which is much more comfortable than a traditional air mattress where you feel like you have to climb out of it. I'm really pleasantly surprised by the support and the fact that it doesn't slip and slide on tile. If you need an air mattress, this is the one."
- Available sizes: Twin, Queen, California King
3. The Best Budget-Friendly Air Mattress
Coleman Soft Plush Top Inflated Quickbed
Why it's great: Suited for both indoor and outdoor use, this affordable air mattress is a great choice if you want to stick to a smaller budget. The valve features a double-lock system to prevent leaks, and the mattress itself is easy to transport. Once you roll it up, just place the attached cover over it and secure the ends with the included strings. In addition to convenience, it's also comfortable — the sleeping surface features a soft fabric so that you don't have to bring sheets.
The trade-offs: With the lower height, it's not going to be as supportive as the SoundAsleep or the King Koil mattresses. And unlike both of those options, the Coleman mattress requires a separate pump for inflation. For an additional $30, you can get the air mattress and pump together.
What fans say: "Used this mattress for 10 nights near Big Bend National Part, and I've never slept better while in the desert. I bought two of these, fully prepared to use the spare when the first one went belly-up, but I never even had to open the box on the second one."
- Available sizes: Twin, Full, Queen
4. The Best Air Mattress For Outdoors
Etekcity Air Mattress (Twin)
Why it's great: Specifically designed for outdoor slumbers, this Etekcity air mattress is made from a thick, sturdy material that's more resistant to punctures and tears from tough terrain. It's elevated nearly a foot off the ground, and its seams are welded together for extra leak-proof protection. And most convenient of all, this mattress comes with a rechargeable pump that works with a car charger or an outlet.
The trade-offs: While the mattress is high enough to raise you comfortably off the ground, it doesn't feature the same elevation as the King Koil or the SoundAsleep, so it's not going to feel as much like a regular bed.
What fans say: "The portable pump charged quickly at home and easily held the charge for set-up and take-down at camp. The mattress remained firm throughout my camping outing and was amazingly comfortable!"
- Available sizes: Twin
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