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mattress guides

How To Soften A Memory Foam Mattress? 5 Effective Methods

woman breaking memory foam mattress

Is memory foam mattress too firm? In this case, you have two options: buy a new mattress or try to soften your old mattress. If you are reading this guide, you are probably not so happy with the first option, and that’s easy to understand—no one wants to spend a lot of money on something that can be fixed and improved. And that’s absolutely possible with a memory foam mattress.

Below, we’ll describe the most effective ways to make your foam mattress a bit or much softer. Some of them will cost you a few hundred dollars, and some are free. Just choose the option that works best for you.

solutions to how soften memory foam mattress

Breaking in memory foam mattress: Way to the comfortable sleep

Here are the possible solutions to the too-firm-mattress problem:

  1. Choose a new foundation. Cost—$100-300. A foam mattress may feel too firm if you place it on a solid base or on the floor. In this case, a foundation with slats (ideally, slats should be about 2” apart) may help you solve the problem.
  2. Be patient and use your mattress for a longer time. Cost—free. Nearly all memory foam beds soften over time. Sleep on it at least for a month to find out how it will really feel in the next 5 years. Yes, it’s not that comfortable to sleep this long on a firm mattress, but at least you won’t soften a bed that shouldn’t be softened.
  3. Apply some pressure. Cost—free. Give your mattress a massage. That sounds weird, but it actually works. Apply some pressure using your hands and knees, but don’t stand in one place for a long time—you need to soften it, not make it sink in some places.
  4. Buy a new topper. Cost—$60-300. If you’ve been using a mattress for a few months and it doesn’t get soft enough, you can just choose the right topper and solve this problem easily. There are plenty of great options on the market—the demand for them is steadily high mostly because it is an easy, fast, and more importantly, really effective solution for those who want to make their mattresses softer, firmer, cooler, or bouncier.
  5. Keep the room a bit warmer. Cost—free. Yes, this may work, too. We’ll tell you how temperature impacts a foam mattress in more detail below.

You can try the free methods first and buy a topper or change the foundation if they don’t work as well as you expected. 

pressing memory foam mattress

Is memory foam hard when cold? Koala discusses temperature impact

Memory foam is a unique material. As you probably know, it adapts to your body, takes its form, and this process is directly related not only to the pressure but also to the temperature. If the temperature in your room is lower than 68 °F or 20 °C, this may be the reason why your mattress feels too firm. Try to raise the temperature, but don’t apply any heat sources like a hairdryer, electric blanket, or hot-water bottle—that can damage your mattress and will definitely void your warranty. Note that this works both ways: you can make a soft mattress firmer by lowering the temperature in your room.

Koala’s advice: Choose the right memory foam mattress firmness

If you look through the reviews of the most popular mattresses like Casper or Saatva, you’ll find some negative feedback that in 90% of cases is somehow related to the wrong firmness of the bed. What to consider to avoid such a scenario and buy a comfortable memory mattress without spending extra time and money on efforts to make it feel softer or firmer? Here are the most important criteria: 

  • Your sleeping position—find what level of firmness will work the best for you in this guide
  • Your weight—the more you weigh, the firmer should be the mattress, and vice versa
  • Density—denser mattresses feel firmer

And don’t forget about the discounts—there are certain time periods when you can save a lot of money on a mattress

right memory foam mattress firmness


Will memory foam mattress get softer over time? Yes, and it may take a few months. Is memory foam soft when warm? Yes, it is, and adjusting the temperature in your room is one of the easiest ways to make it softer. If that doesn’t work, try any of the effective ways to soften it that we described above.


Why does my memory foam mattress hurt my back?

Basically, it happens because your mattress doesn’t work well for you. It may be too soft or too firm, too dense or too thin, too old which causes sagging, place on a wrong foundation (with a too small or too large distance between slats), it’s too new (it may take up to 2 months for it to fully expand and adapt to your body), or it may not fit your sleeping positions.

How to break in a memory foam mattress within the shortest time?

Apply gentle pressure, try to increase the temperature in your room, and wait for a month (at least) to let it fully adjust to your body.

Do memory foam mattresses get softer with time?

Is your memory foam mattress uncomfortable? Remember that such mattresses get softer over time, and it may take up to 1-2 months for them to become more comfortable, so don’t return your mattress right after you buy it and understand that it’s a bit firmer than you expected.

How long does it take to break in a memory foam mattress?

It can last up to 2 months. Just be patient and take measures to soften it (adjust room temperature, change your foundation, buy a topper, apply pressure) only after you make sure that it won’t get softer over time just by itself.