How to choose the best air mattress for everyday use

Blow up air mattresses have come a long way since they were simply a thin layer of air that barely hovered off the ground. Air mattresses are traditionally known to not even be full of air the following morning. Too many people have woken up laying on the ground after a night on air mattresses and luckily, the narrative for air mattresses has changed in recent years. 

The primary use of air mattresses is that they’re easy to store, easy to set up, and simple to pack up on the go. If you have an air mattress stashed away in the closet, all of a sudden when family come over to sleep, you have an extra bed. 

There are various types of air mattresses to choose from and they depend on the owner’s style and comfort levels. While it’s rare that somebody would sleep on an air mattress on the regular, they’ve become comfortable enough in the past decade that it wouldn’t be insane to blow up a mattress and sleep on it for a lengthy period of time. Raised mattresses are a type of air beds that are easy to set up and they sit low to the ground. Raised mattresses look very similar to traditional beds once inflated and tend to be very comfortable. Other options include the convertible air bed, which can inflate into the same shape of a couch or a large chair. These are ideal for if you have a lot of people over and maybe not so much furniture. They’re also very popular with kids to set up during movie night as a perfect option to doze off on with a movie playing (not to mention, they’re great to build forts with!) Other air mattresses to consider are self-inflatable mattresses that have a pump built in, which makes it a clear advantage when needing to inflate them. The self-inflatables have a tiny pump and motor and can be blown up with the simple flick of a switch.

Generally, the comfort level of an air mattress will be related to how thick the beds are and it’s something you need to consider when choosing. You’ll want some thickness when sleeping on an air mattress, specifically because they can deflate a bit while you’re sleeping on them, especially during cold nights. Nobody wants to wake up on a cold floor, those days should be over. Because it’s inevitable that air mattresses deflate, you’re going to want to start off your sleep with a mattress that is as thick as possible. While being a touch more expensive, memory foam air mattresses have become more popular throughout the industry. You still blow it up with air but the make-up is with foam and helps to contour your body which helps to alleviate aches and pains. Obviously, a memory foam air mattress won’t be as effective as its traditional counterpart, but they tend to be a lot more comfy than old-school plastic air beds. 

Just like regular beds, inflatable beds come in a variety of different sizes which range from twin to king. When choosing an air mattress, you’ll need to decide what its primary use will be. If you’re just looking to choose an air mattress for when you go camping, a twin or full size bed might come in handy. But, if you’re looking for an air mattress to be able to pull out when you have guests sleeping over, a queen or king size might be best. If you can’t offer your guest prime comfort like regular beds, you might as well offer them size. 

Air Mattress Full Size - Best Choice Raised Inflatable Bed with Fitted Sheet and Bed Skirt - Built-in High Capacity Airbed Pump
  • NO-HASSLE WARRANTY - Your purchase includes a 1-year WARRANTY and a 60-day RISK-FREE SATISFACTION GUARANTEE. If you're not completely thrilled with your air mattress, send it back for a full refund, no questions asked. We'll even pay for return shipping for the FULL air mattress.
  • NO MORE BACK PAIN - Read the reviews of the Best Choice Air Mattress. You'll find that people are thrilled with the firmness of this air bed. Other inflatable beds will collapse or stretch, which offers no support for your joints. With the laminated material of the Best Choice, we have solved that problem. It not only offers a firm sleeping surface, but it also makes for a very sturdy air mattress on the edges as well.
Noble Queen Size Luxury Upgraded Double HIGH Raised Air Mattress, Inflatable Airbed with Built-in Pump Elevated Raised Air Mattress Quilt Top, Coil Beam Technology
  • Noble COIL BEAM AIRBED TECHNOLOGY - Pillow like Cloud Flocking Layer for added comfort - We Back UP & Stand Behind Our Quality!
  • QUEEN SIZED with Air Beam Structure and a BUILT-IN 120V AC Pump - FULLY Inflated Dimensions: 80" x 58" x 18" for maximum size & comfort
Serta Raised Air Mattress Twin with NeverFLAT Pump
  • STANDARD TWIN AIR MATTRESS: PVC Construction with Flocked top and 21 circular coils on this twin-size air mattress create a strong, supportive, and level sleep surface no matter how you move throughout the night. 18" raised height makes getting into and out of bed easier.
  • BUILT-IN PUMPS: Two built in pumps in one bed. The patented NeverFLAT pump system silently keeps your airbed inflated all night. Guaranteed! The PRIMARY PUMP automatically inflates and deflates your airbed in less than 4 minutes. The SECONDARY NeverFLAT PUMP monitors and silently maintains the air pressure to your desired comfort level while you sleep. Convenient auto-shutoff feature on primary pump automatically turns the pump system off when the airbed is fully inflated/ deflated.
Active Era Queen Air Mattress with Built in Pump & Raised Pillow – Puncture Resistant with Waterproof Flocked Top, Elevated Inflatable Air Bed for Guests
  • COMFORTABLE & SUPPORTIVE: Raised 17 inches from the floor this queen air mattress is fitted with 35 structured air-coils which provide head to toe support for a relaxing and comfortable night’s sleep. This advanced support system prevents the dips and bulges which are common on other air beds and allows for a weight capacity of up to 550 pounds.
  • BUILT-IN PILLOW: This blow up bed features a unique 3-inch built-in raised pillow for improved head and neck support and improved spinal alignment for bed like comfort throughout the night.
Intex Comfort Plush Elevated Dura-Beam Airbed with Internal Electric Pump, Bed Height 22", Queen
  • Approximate inflation time 4 3/4 minutes
  • The sleeping surface is covered in soft flocking for extra comfort, and the indented sides keep your fitted sheets from slipping

The most common air mattress size is the queen. It’s big enough to comfortably sleep two adults and it won’t take up as much space as the king size. 

When it comes to choosing an air mattress, it’s most difficult chore is the actual pumping up of the mattress. After a few glasses of wine near bed time, you don’t exactly feel like preparing your bed for sleep. With that said, while choosing an air mattress, you’ll want to get a pump that makes inflation convenient. Most models will require a foot or hand pump and if you don’t feel like putting in sweat to go to sleep, you can consider choosing models that have electric or built-in pumps. Some use batteries and some need to be plugged in to pump in the air. Automatic pumps are great choices because some provide the ability to pump air back into the mattress during the night which is optimal for people who don’t want to wake up on the floor. 

When choosing an air mattress, you’ll also want to consider your pets. Figure that sharp claws and air mattresses don’t really go together and a hole in your mattress will effectively make it useless. There are always patches that you can buy and heavy-duty adhesives but once you start putting chemicals onto your mattress, you might want to just ditch it altogether. 

You’ll also want to consider mattresses that have good air holding ability because getting as much air between you and the ground is the number one priority for comfort when it comes to sleeping on air beds. 

In the end, be sure you’re choosing an air mattress that can provide enough comfort, comes in a size that fits your needs, and can hold a lot of air. It’s always a bonus to get a mattress that comes with a warranty or some time of protection, especially considering if it gets a hole, it’s done for. 

To make air mattresses feel like regular ones, a topper is a great way to add more comfort on the top layer.

Just remember to never overfill your mattress and put it in a spot that is free for sharp angles. Again, your goal is to always sleep comfortably and a popped mattress won’t do anyone any good.