Brooklyn Bedding Essential Mattress Review: The New Best Affordable Hybrid? – CNET

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Brooklyn Bedding Essential


  • Hybrid mattress for stomach, back or combo sleepers

  • Accommodating neutral feel

  • Affordable price

Don’t like

  • Only comes in one firmness option

  • Nicer options for only slightly more money

Brooklyn Bedding is one of the biggest names in online mattresses. It offers a wide variety of beds at competitive prices. The Brooklyn Bedding Signature mattress is one of our all-time favorite beds because of its value, comfort and versatility, and the brand-new Brooklyn Essential is even more affordable than the Signature with a similar design.

First impressions of the Brooklyn Essential

Brooklyn Bedding Essential Mattress

Jonathan Gomez/CNET

Upon first unboxing the Brooklyn Essential, I immediately noticed the design of the cover, which looks nothing like any of the current mattresses available from Brooklyn Bedding — and they generally look similar across its beds. The cover is unimportant, but it’s something I always notice after testing hundreds of beds.

Thanks to the Essential’s hybrid design, it firmed up quickly out of the box, and it felt comfortable and supportive when I lay down on it for the first time. That isn’t always the case: Beds often need 24 to 48 hours to reach their intended firmness level. 

On Brooklyn Bedding’s website, it describes the Essential as a mattress without “bells and whistles” and “just comfort,” and that seems to be exactly the case. When we first learned the price of this mattress, I was even more impressed with the bed.

Video: Brooklyn Bedding Essential mattress review

Watch me review the Brooklyn Bedding Essential mattress.

Brooklyn Bedding Essential policies

Free shipping

The Brooklyn Bedding essential mattress ships in a box to your door. It comes at no extra cost in the contiguous United States. Unboxing a mattress is a quick and easy process; CNET reviewers have done it hundreds of times, and it’s actually fun.

I do recommend unboxing it with two people because it can be challenging solo, especially for larger sizes like queen and king.

120-night trial 

Brooklyn Bedding offers a slightly longer than standard in-home sleep trial of 120 nights. So you get roughly four months to really test out the bed and see if it’s comfortable and supportive enough for you. 

Keep in mind that it can take a month or longer for your body to adjust to a new mattress, no matter how well-suited it is to your sleeping preferences. 

Return Policy

If, during the 120-night trial period, you decide the Brooklyn Essential isn’t for you, you can return it for free and get a refund for any reason. Like most brands, Brooklyn Bedding will ask you to sleep on the bed for at least 30 nights before initiating a return.

Returning a mattress is easy. You don’t have to ship the mattress back yourself, so don’t worry about keeping the box (there’s no way you could actually put it back in the box). All you need to do is contact the company, and it will coordinate a pickup of the mattress.


All Brooklyn Bedding mattresses, including the Brooklyn Essential, are backed by a standard 10-year warranty. If you buy a mattress online, a 10-year warranty is the minimum you should expect.

Construction and feel

Brooklyn Bedding Essential Mattress testing

Jonathan Gomez/CNET

The Brooklyn Bedding Essential mattress is roughly 10 inches thick, and the support layer is an 8-inch layer of pocketed coils. All Brooklyn Bedding mattresses have coils. If you’re looking for a foam mattress from Brooklyn Bedding, it has a sub-brand called Dreamfoam with multiple foam mattress options.

Having coils is generally a positive for a mattress, because it provides more durability and support over the course of several years and has improved airflow. But plenty of sleepers prefer foam beds as they have less bounce and improved motion isolation, so it really comes down to your personal preference.

Above the coils, the Brooklyn Essential has two foam layers: a 3.25-inch thick layer of high-density, responsive foam to help make sure you only feel the bounce and support from the coil layer, not the actual coils and a 1.5-inch layer of quilted comfort foam. 

The entire construction adds up to give the Brooklyn Bedding Essential a flat, neutral-hybrid feel that is generally accommodating for most people. You’ll get some nice bounce and responsiveness thanks to the coil layer and plenty of pressure relief from the foams. 

This type of feel is meant to be not distinctive like  memory foam or  responsive latex foam, and most people who try beds like this either enjoy them or at least find them decently comfortable.

Brooklyn Bedding Essential firmness and sleeper types

The Brooklyn Bedding Essential is a medium on our firmness scale, or roughly a 4 to 6 out of 10. This means it should be able to accommodate any sleeping position (back, stomach, side and combination) effectively. 

A medium firmness like this isn’t necessarily ideal for everyone, but it usually allows you to sleep in any position pain-free and works especially well for combination sleepers and couples who can’t quite agree on a soft or firm mattress.

The Brooklyn Bedding Essential only comes in one firmness option, unlike the Brooklyn Bedding Signature mattress, which is available in three for more specialized soft and firm beds.

Brooklyn Bedding Essential performance

Testing edge support of Brooklyn Bedding Essential Mattress

Testing the edge support on the Brooklyn Bedding Essential. 

Jonathan Gomez/CNET

Edge support

There is no additional edge support reinforcement in the coils like certain higher-end hybrid mattresses, but I observed in testing that the edge support on the Brooklyn Bedding Essential is solid. 

I didn’t feel any roll-off while putting my weight on the edges of the bed, which is great for couples sharing a mattress. 

Motion isolation

The Brooklyn Bedding Essential is average in terms of its ability to isolate cross-mattress motion. Since it’s a hybrid bed that doesn’t have dense memory foam, this makes a lot of sense. 

It does use pocketed coils, though, which have almost entirely replaced traditional innersprings in mattress design. These coils do a much better job at isolating motion, so I don’t see this being a deal-breaker for the vast majority of sleepers. If you’re a light sleeper who wakes up easily when your partner tosses and turns, however, it could happen more on this bed than others. 

If that’s something you’ve struggled with in the past, then a bed made of foam layers or uses a lot of memory foam is ideal.

Temperature Regulation

Thanks to the breathable nature of the pocketed coils and the foams used by Brooklyn Bedding, the Essential should sleep temperature neutral. We didn’t find any red flags for this mattress retaining lots of body heat, so if you do sleep hot, it will have way more to do with your sleep environment and your bedding than the mattress.

If you want a mattress that will actively cool you down, you can check out the Brooklyn Bedding Aurora Luxe mattress, which is one of our favorite cooling beds.

Brooklyn Bedding Essential mattress pricing

Size Measurements (inches) Price
Twin 38×75 inches $532
Twin XL 38×80 inches $732
Full 54×75 inches $799
Queen 60×80 inches $932
King 76×80 inches $1,132
Cal king 72×84 inches $1,132

The price of the Brooklyn Bedding Essential is appealing. We watch mattress pricing constantly at CNET, and this is one of the most affordable hybrid beds that we’ve tested to this point, coming in below most other hybrids and even some foam beds (hybrids are generally more expensive). 

And on top of already being affordable, Brooklyn Bedding will run discounts pretty much year round, usually anywhere between 20% off to 30% off any mattress in any size. 

Brooklyn Bedding also offers veterans and members of the military a 30% discount year round on all of its products.

Make sure you check out our mattress deals page for the most up-to-date pricing and discounts on the Brooklyn Bedding Essential or any other bed you’re interested in.

Who is the Brooklyn Bedding Essential mattress best for?

Brooklyn Bedding Essential Mattress testing

Jonathan Gomez/CNET

Final verdict

I think Brooklyn Bedding nailed it with the Essential mattress. It describes it on its website as a bed with no “bells and whistles” and “just comfort,” and I agree with that completely. It’s comfortable, supportive and affordable.

Other beds from Brooklyn Bedding, like the Signature and the Aurora Luxe, are nicer and have more features like firmness options and cooling covers, but they’re also more expensive. 

If you’re looking for a no-frills, affordable hybrid mattress, you’ll be hard-pressed to find a better option than the Brooklyn Bedding Essential

The only real issue I might have with this mattress is that there are nicer options out there if you’re willing to spend a little more money, like the Signature. But having a variety of beds at different prices just means there are more choices for you no matter your budget, so the Essential Mattress is a welcome addition to the Brooklyn Bedding lineup of beds.

You might like the Brooklyn Bedding Essential mattress if:

  • You want a mattress with a medium firmness profile
  • You are shopping for a mattress on a strict budget
  • You are not seeking a specialized mattress feel
  • You are seeking a hybrid mattress

You might not like the Brooklyn Bedding Essential mattress if:

  • You want a noticeably luxurious mattress
  • You want a firm or soft mattress
  • You love the feel of memory foam

Other mattresses from Brooklyn Bedding

Brooklyn Bedding Signature: The Brooklyn Bedding Essential can be thought of as a simplified version of the Signature mattress. The Signature has more layers of foam, three firmness options to choose from and you can spend a little extra to add a “cloud pillow top” that makes the bed a bit more luxurious. 

Brooklyn Aurora Luxe: This mattress is basically a nicer version of the Brooklyn Bedding Signature, featuring additional foam layers and an active cooling cover that should help you sleep a few degrees cooler at night. The addition of the Essential mattress to the lineup gives Brooklyn Bedding a “good, better, best” trio of beds, which is what we see with several brands.

Dreamfoam Hybrid: This bed comes from the Dreamfoam sub-brand of Brooklyn Bedding, and it’s similar to the Essential by being an affordable hybrid. The Dreamfoam Hybrid is a bit more affordable than the Essential, and features a cool to the touch cover. However, the coil layer on the Brooklyn Essential is thicker and should provide more bounce, and it will also likely be more durable over a longer period of time.

How does the Brooklyn Bedding Essential compare to similar mattresses?

Brooklyn Bedding Essential vs. Allswell Luxe

The Allswell Luxe is one of our favorite affordable hybrid beds. It has a similar feel and firmness profile to the Brooklyn Essential, the only difference being it uses a memory foam in its construction, but you won’t feel it all that much. The Allswell Luxe is also more affordable by a few hundred dollars. 

The other big difference is that you have to order The Allswell Luxe through Wal-Mart as opposed to the manufacturer like the Essential, and it doesn’t have quite as generous of a trial period. 

Brooklyn Bedding Essential vs. The DreamCloud Hybrid

Another one of our favorite affordable hybrid beds, the DreamCloud Hybrid, is noticeably more luxurious than the Brooklyn Bedding Essential. It is quite a bit thicker, and features a tufted cover with a cashmere blend that gives it a more premium look. The firmness and feel between these beds are also very similar, with a medium firmness and a neutral hybrid feel, despite the DreamCloud using memory foam.

Before discount, the Brooklyn Bedding Essential is much more affordable than the DreamCloud Hybrid, but after discount, the prices are very comparable.

Brooklyn Bedding Essential FAQs

Are Brooklyn Bedding mattresses made in the USA?

Brooklyn Bedding manufactures its beds out of its production facility in Phoenix, Arizona. However, they may be made with some imported materials.

Is the Brooklyn Bedding Essential mattress supportive?

Yes, this mattress has an 8-inch layer of coils for support, so you shouldn’t experience sagging with this bed.

Are Brooklyn Bedding mattresses safe?

Yes, all of its beds are Certa-PUR US certified, which means they’re free of ozone-depleting chemicals and other chemicals, like formaldehyde, so it’s perfectly safe.

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