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Nectar Essential Hybrid Mattress review: A great value medium-firm mattress

Our Rating :
Price when reviewed : £1299
king size, inc VAT

With pressure-relieving foam and encapsulated springs, the Nectar Essential Hybrid Mattress delivers a peaceful night’s sleep


  • Great value
  • An excellent medium-firm option
  • Good support in every position


  • Slow to fully form
  • Cover isn’t removable
  • Some off-gassing at first

Deal of the week

If you’re quick, you can snap up a massive saving on the Nectar Essential Hybrid Mattress. For example, the king-size version is now £520 (was £650).

View deal at Nectar

A well-known name in the bed-in-a-box market, Nectar has five mattresses in its line-up, including the Nectar Hybrid Mattress and the Premier Hybrid Mattress, as well as a couple of all-foam models.

The Essential Hybrid is Nectar’s entry-level hybrid mattress, combining the comfort of memory foam with supportive pocket springs.  It’s made up of six layers (25cm in total), including a layer of encapsulated pocket springs, designed to create a breathable mattress that supports you in all sleeping positions.

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Nectar Essential Hybrid Mattress review: What you need to know

Nectar’s mattresses are made in the UK, with the brand claiming that the manufacturing process is carbon neutral, while all foam materials used are non-toxic and free from ‘heavy metals, ozone-depleting chemicals and harmful dyes’. Of course, eco-friendly claims from mattress brands need to be taken with a pinch of salt, and Nectar’s mattresses still arrived boxed and vacuum packed in plastic, so you will still be left with a fair bit of recycling to contend with.

nectar essential hybrid mattress review

When you place your order online, you can choose the specific day to have your mattress delivered to ensure that the set-up process is straightforward and convenient for you. For a small fee, Nectar can also have your old mattress taken away and recycled once they have delivered your new one.

nectar essential hybrid mattress review

And, for added peace of mind, the company offers a 365-night home trial, which means you can return the mattress any time within that first year if it’s not quite right for you. This is a particularly generous trial-period as many rivals, such as Simba, offer up to 200 nights.

READ NEXT: The best mattresses to buy

Nectar Essential Hybrid Mattress review: Price and competition

The recommended retail price for the Nectar Essential Hybrid runs from £949 for a single. However, as with most bed-in-a-box brands, the mattresses are regularly on offer and it’s not often that you’ll have to pay full price. I reviewed a king size which would have cost £1,299 at the RRP, but, at the time of writing, was down to £520.

By comparison, the 20cm-deep Simba Hybrid Essential starts at £749 for a single, with a 200-night trial period and 10-year guarantee. As I’ve touched on, Nectar and Simba also offer regular discounts on their mattresses, so it’s worth keeping an eye out for deals at peak sale times. But, with this in mind, the Nectar Essential Hybrid Mattress is very reasonably priced between its direct competitors.

To complement its selection of mattresses, Nectar also sells a range of bedding, mattress protectors and pillows. When you click to buy a mattress, you’ll find that these extra items are offered as a bundle, which can be tempting if you’re keen for a complete bedroom refresh and may save you even more compared with buying them separately. For example, at the time of writing, the Nectar Essential Hybrid Starter Bundle, with double mattress, mattress protector, bedding set, duvet and two pillows, is on sale for £683.

READ NEXT: The best hybrid mattresses to buy

Nectar Essential Hybrid Mattress review: Design and key features

The outer surface of the Nectar Essential Hybrid is a polyester ‘quilted cooling cover’ that feels soft to touch. It’s designed to draw heat away from the body while you sleep and circulate fresh air when you move in the night. It can also be removed for cleaning.

nectar essential hybrid mattress review

Below this is a layer of ‘pressure-relieving memory foam’, designed to give your body support and comfort in the places you need it most, such as the hips and lumbar area. To optimise the breathability of the mattress, a ‘dynamic support layer’ is included to enhance the air flow and ensure that you remain at a comfortable temperature throughout the night. The individually wrapped 15cm pocket springs further enhance this air flow, while also giving the mattress a nice bit of squish, which I didn’t think felt too firm or too soft.

This is a mattress that is designed to be paired with either a divan or a slatted base and the positioning material on the base of the mattress ensures it sits securely on the frame.

nectar essential hybrid mattress review

Setting up the mattress was straightforward as it was simply a matter of carting it upstairs, onto my wooden slatted bed frame, and slicing off the plastic vacuum wrap. Nectar suggests that you wait four hours before sleeping on the mattress, but I waited 72 hours to ensure it really had reached its full final shape and that any off-gassing – the factory smell that all new mattresses come with – had dispersed.

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Nectar Essential Hybrid Mattress review: Performance and comfort

To thoroughly test the Nectar Essential Hybrid Mattress and give it a fair try, my partner (who is much taller and more slender in frame than I am) and I slept on it over the course of two months. We had previously been sleeping on the Nectar Premier Hybrid Mattres and we were keen to see if there were any real differences, aside from price.

Just like Nectar Premier Hybrid Mattress, the Essential Hybrid looks and feels premium in its finish and design. However, one of the main differences is in its structure, specifically the depth and the number of layers of foam and springs included. The 25cm-thick Essential Hybrid has a total of six layers, slightly short of the 28cm-thick Premier Hybrid, which has eight layers. There’s also far more springs in the Premier Hybrid, which may just give it the edge on support and breathability.

nectar essential hybrid mattress review

However, these differences do not mean the Essential Hybrid provides an inferior sleep. Although Nectar gives both mattresses a 6-6.5 rating on its firmness scale, I found the Essential Hybrid to be slightly softer and more comfortable to sleep on, while I had found the Premier Hybrid to be firmer than most other medium-firm mattresses I’ve tested.

The combination of memory foam and springs inside the Essential Hybrid was enough to gently adapt to my body shape as I moved around. While I felt more comfortable lying on my back (with a pillow under my knees) than I did on my side and front, that’s not to say I didn’t feel equally supported in all positions.

nectar essential hybrid mattress review

The overall structure of the Essential Hybrid mattress is quite solid from edge to edge, and although the sides do squish down a little when sitting on them – and much more on the corners – I generally found it easy to get in and out of bed in the morning.

Just like the Premier Hybrid, the Essential Hybrid does well to limit motion transfer, which meant both my partner and I could get a good night’s sleep without being disturbed by the other moving in the night. In fact, according to my Oura sleep-tracking ring, while sleeping on this mattress I was waking up a lot less, at least compared to previous months, and my ‘sleep score’ improved.

READ NEXT: The best king size mattresses to buy

Nectar Essential Hybrid Mattress review: Verdict

If you’re after a reliable and supportive mattress that feels comfortable and is built with mindfully sourced materials, the Nectar Essential Hybrid Mattress is a good option to consider.

It combines a good mix of foam and springs to provide a medium-firm base with a nice hint of bounce. Its structure is breathable and crafted to keep you at a comfortable temperature as you sleep.

nectar essential hybrid mattress review

Overall, I found the Essential Hybrid a tad softer and therefore more comfortable than the Premier Hybrid. Its edge support isn’t the most solid you can find, but it does hold together nicely when getting in and out of bed, and it has good motion isolation. With a 365-night trial period, the Forever Warranty, and a very reasonable price tag – particularly when it’s on sale – you really can’t go wrong.

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