This affordable hybrid mattress from Dusk is the perfect option for anyone who prefers a softer base – and for those who are on a budget. It arrives in a box and offers zero motion transfer and impressive edge-to-edge support. Moreover, it's breathable and wrapped in a removable and washable cover. Avoid if you are a front sleeper...
Arrives in a box for your convenience
Next to no motion transfer
Removable cover that's washable
Not the most supportive for front sleepers
Can’t be flipped, only rotated
Not available in single size
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The DUSK Cool Gel Foam Hybrid Mattress is just one of 6 mattresses this popular bedding brand now sells. With a total of 2,000 pocket springs and 3 layers of cool foam, this mattress measures your standard 25cm deep. It arrives rolled and inside a compact box for delivery convenience. Plus, Dusk offers a 100 Night Sleep Trial to ensure you won't get stuck with a mattress that doesn't suit your sleep position.
Whilst remembering that the Dusk Cool Gel Foam Hybrid Mattress (opens in new tab) is one of the brand's most expensive offerings, with prices starting from £499 for a double, we thought this would be a great product to test. This hybrid mattress is essentially a pocket spring sandwich. It offers 4 layers, the top being cool gel foam, then comes 2,000 individually wrapped heat tempered pocket springs and lastly, two more layers of foam for pressure relief. This mattress follows a similar design to the DUSK Cool Gel Foam mattress but with the addition of pocket springs and even more foam added to the mix. There is also a Dusk Cool Gel Foam Hybrid mattress with 1,000 springs, which is half the amount of springs this one has, just to avoid confusion. This mattress is the most luxurious option in the Dusk Cool Gel Foam trio, with more layers and even more springs on offer. All of these mattresses, however, are nice and breathable to keep you cool whilst you sleep, and they're all wrapped in a cushioned cover that's both removable and washable. The best part? This mattress is crafted using a mixture of foam, one type being recyclable foam so as to be kinder to the environment.
We had two types of sleepers test this mattress for us, one of whom being me, and I sleep on my front. The other is my fiancé and he sleeps on his side. Find out how it fared when we tested it, and whether it deserves a slot alongside the other brilliant mattresses on our best mattress list.
Ideal Home's rating: 4 out of 5 stars
The Dusk Cool Gel Foam Hybrid mattress is a super soft mattress that's best suited for side sleepers. Its 3 layers of foam made this mattress quite uncomfortable for our front sleeper, but rest assured that after moving onto their side to snooze, they found this mattress nice and comfortable. The softness of this mattress helps to contour to the curves of your body as you lay on your side, keeping your spine straight and aligned with your neck at all times when on your side. We found this mattress to be pleasantly breathable. The healthy balance of springs and foam did mean we noticed little to no motion transfer when sleeping on this mattress, so neither of us were ever disturbed when it came to early wake up calls or midnight toilet trips.
Dusk Cool Gel Foam Hybrid specifications
- Type: Hybrid
- Sizes: Double, King, Super King
- Comfort level: Medium-Firm (we think it's more medium)
- Construction Materials: Knitted cover, cool gel foam, high density foam, recycled foam, pocket springs
- Height: 25cm
- MSRP: From £499.99 for a double size
Who will the Dusk Cool Gel Foam Hybrid suit?
This Dusk mattress in a box is definitely best suited to those who are searching for a soft mattress but who might be on a budget. It's also a super convenient option since it arrives inside a box and it comes with a 100-night sleep trial, similar to that of other mattresses. For most people, a try at home period is better than being able to sit on a mattress in the store. This way, you can truly experience the mattress and see if you like it, whilst in the comfort of your own home - and paired with your own pillows, your duvet and your favourite bedding set.
When it comes to considering sleep positions, we think that this mattress is best for side sleepers. Whilst testing it, both of us found that it was comfortable whilst they slept on their side. I was initially a front sleeper when I first started testing this mattress, and sleeping on my front led to me waking up with a stiff back and neck. So, I swiftly switched to sleeping on my side. When it comes to motion transfer there is essentially none, so if you are searching for a mattress and you or your partner tend to move around during the night, then this is a great budget-friendly bet.
Unboxing: how easy is it to set up the Dusk Cool Gel Foam Hybrid?
This mattress arrived at our front door rolled, and inside a box for convenience. It easily fit through our front door and through another interior door, as well as down a narrow hallway. It was surprisingly easy to move around the bedroom whilst trying to work out the best way to get it out of the box. It arrives with a piece of paper with instructions on, just 6 steps in total that are quite self-explanatory.
All in all, it was fairly simple to open and put on the bed. Just remember to cut it open whilst it's facing the right side up.
Upon cutting open the plastic wrap that the mattress came in, we positioned the mattress on our bed and then left it for around 4 hours before sleeping that evening. It says that it will take about 72 hours to reach its optimum comfort level. It did expand quite a lot straight away, but the cover remained to look saggy for quite a while. This mattress can't be flipped and there wasn't anything on the instructions to signify that you need to rotate it, though we probably will do this in a month's time, after using the mattress for 3 months.
The box the mattress came inside can be recycled, whilst the plastic wrap will have to go into your landfill bin.
Is the Dusk Cool Gel Foam Hybrid comfortable?
Now, after sleeping on this mattress for a couple of months and letting our bodies get used to its soft base, we find this mattress comfortable and supportive. However, we will admit that it took some getting used to initially. It's quite common for this to be the case when switching mattresses, especially if you are switching types of mattresses (springs to memory foam or vice versa). We always say to give it a good few days of being a tad uncomfortable, to allow your body to get used to a new mattress. It was also a lot softer than the previous mattress that we tested, so that definitely took some getting used to.
We had two different types of sleepers test this mattress, one of whom was me, and I slept on my front initially. My fiancé sleeps on his side, occasionally turning on his back. I was trying to change my default sleeping position to my side, so this mattress definitely gave me a push to do so as it was uncomfortable when positioned on my front but super comfortable when I moved over to my side. We tested this mattress for 2 months in total, and on initial sleeping, as previously mentioned, it was super soft, however, we can confidently say that now we are used to its support and we find ourselves actually loving it.
Both of us immediately noticed this mattress' breathability which is quite impressive considering its cheaper price tag. We tested this mattress during cold and hot temperatures, thanks to the unreliable British weather, so we can say that it kept us at the optimum temperature whether it was 26C outside or 2C. We were both also super impressed with how there is no motion transfer with this mattress. This is really important to me since my fiancé often wakes earlier than me, and I am a light sleeper. So, it felt more than refreshing to realise that I no longer bounce up and down as he wakes in the morning.
How I found this mattress
As a front sleeper who was determined to start sleeping on their side, I very much found this mattress uncomfortable from the get-go when positioned on my front. This is because I was sinking too deep into the mattress, making my neck and spine unaligned. I was waking with a sore neck and back each morning, no matter how many different pillows I tried out. So, I moved on to my side. It took a while for me to get used to the softness of the base, but I will say that when sleeping on my side it's very comfortable and paired with my favourite pillow, it offers hours of uninterrupted sleep (and zero back pain in the morning!). All in all, in my default sleep position (on my front), I cannot get on with this mattress. But after becoming a side sleeper I am confident that this is a comfortable base.
How my fiancé found this mattress
The other sleeper we had test this mattress was my fiancé and he loved it too as a side sleeper who sometimes rolls onto their back. Though it's worth us noting he always would usually opt for foam bedding. He initially struggled to get used to the mattress and says it was originally softer than expected. Though rest assured that 2 months down the line, he is happy with the support and comfort it offers. He sleeps on the edge of the bed and feels well supported by the mattress, not to mention that even when he has rolled onto his back in the middle of the night, he never wakes feeling sore or achy. The only thing he will say is that he found that he sunk into this mattress more than expected. This is likely because he is the heavier one out of the two of us.
Another selling point, besides its comfort, is this mattress' breathability. Since we both went from one super breathable mattress to this one, we did notice a slight decline in the change of breathability however it wasn't anything super drastic. My fiancé is a hot sleeper and reported no issues when switching from one base to the other. Considering this mattress is on the cheaper side, we were surprised to note how breathable it really is.
How is it breathable? This mattress is created using cool gel foam which is designed to allow airflow through the entire mattress. This cool gel foam sits on the top layer of the mattress so that you don't find it heavy or stuffy. The entire mattress is also wrapped with a breathable, allergy-friendly 350GSM cover to reduce overheating and aid temperature regulation. This is also super soft and it's textured with raised circles, to keep your bed sheet in its place all night long.
It's worth us noting that we are yet to remove and wash the cover, but will update this once review once we have done this, to report back on how it washes.
What is the edge support like?
We tested this mattress in a king-size, with two people sleeping on it at all times. My fiancé always sleeps on the very edge of the bed, whilst I position myself to be closer to the middle of the bed.
My fiancé has assured me that this mattress keeps them well-balanced at all times when they are snoozing on the edge of the bed. They always feel safe, no matter how close they are to the edge, mostly because the mattress is soft and cuddles their body to keep them secure.
We tested this ourselves using a 3kg dumbbell (the heaviest we had at the time), and you can see the comparison photos below.
Though the dumbbell isn’t heavy enough to offer any indication as to how soft the mattress is, you can compare how deep each of these matching weights sits when they are side by side, but in different places on the mattress.
You can see from this photo that the mattress is slightly more firm in its middle, and softer on its side, to ensure impressive edge-to-edge support, and to prevent you from falling out of bed.
What is the Dusk Cool Gel Foam Hybrid made from?
The Dusk Cool Gel Foam Hybrid mattress comprises 4 premium layers:
1. The first layer is breathable cool gel foam which gives the mattress its immediately soft feel.
2. Then comes 2,000 individually wrapped heat tempered pocket springs for good balance and to offer support where you need it the most. These springs are what help your body sink into the mattress.
3. Then there's one foam layer on one side of the mattress.
4. Plus another foam layer on the other side, to work together for pressure relief.
On top of that, as previously mentioned in this review, the mattress is wrapped with a breathable, allergy-friendly 350GSM cover that's super soft.
What is the difference between the 2 Dusk Cool Gel Foam mattresses?
The Dusk Cool Gel Foam mattress comes in three types, one of which features no springs and only comes in a single size. The other two types come in a 1,000 spring option or a 2,000 spring option, the difference between them being £50 and 1,000 springs.
If you really like foam and don't mind sinking into a mattress, then we would say to go for the cheaper option, the 1,000 spring mattress, as it's less of a healty balance of foam and springs. The one we tested, the 2,000 spring option, is a premium pick for just £50 more that can give a better balance of springs and foam if you can't choose between the two.
- Cool Gel Foam: from £249
- Cool Gel Foam 1,000 springs: from £449
- Cool Gel Foam 2,000 springs: from £499
- Cool Gel Foam: 3 layers of foam
- Cool Gel Foam 1,000 springs: 1,000 springs, cool gel foam
- Cool Gel Foam 2,000 springs: cool gel foam, 2,000 springs, 2 more layers of foam
Is the Dusk Cool Gel Foam Hybrid worth the money?
In our opinion, if you are searching for a soft mattress and you have a smaller budget, then this is a great option. Its RRP starts from £499 for a double, although it's worth noting that there's quite often a sale at Dusk. In terms of longevity, this mattress is showing zero signs of wear, although its cover is still looking slightly saggy which isn't an issue performance-wise, it's more of an issue when it comes to looks. We will be updating this review after more months of sleeping on the mattress, with more information on its comfort and how it looks after more months of use.
The temperature regulation and breathability of this mattress are both second-to-none, and its motion transfer is minimal, making it ideal for anyone who sleeps next to someone who is a little restless. Or if you often have the kids hop into your bed during the night or a heavy pet who sleeps on the end of your bed.
The only thing we can possibly complain about, apart from it being uncomfortable for me when sleeping on my front, is that we both found it a little soft to begin with, is that the mattress' cover looks a little saggy.
It’s worth us noting that as well as a 100-night trial, this mattress comes with a 3-year warranty and you will get free delivery.
How does it compare to other mattresses
As mentioned before, we were sleeping on the Otty Pure Plus Hybrid before this Dusk mattress. When switching from one to the other, we noticed that whilst the Dusk mattress is breathable, the Otty offers slightly more breathability which is understandable considering the drastic price difference.
As a side sleeper who sometimes rolls onto their back, my fiancé found that after switching from the Otty to the Dusk, he noticed that because the Dusk mattress is a softer base, as the heavier person on the bed, he sunk into this Dusk mattress more in comparison. He would find that he ended up being positioned lower down and deeper into this mattress whilst sleeping on it.
Other than that, there's not a huge difference in these two mattresses. The Dusk mattress is slightly softer and the Otty one offers eco-credentials this mattress cannot. Let your budget decide which one you think is your best bet.
How did we test this mattress?
For more context, it helps to know about me – the reviewer – and my sleep style. I am the Deputy Ecommerce Editor at Ideal Home and I spend my time reviewing a range of products, from exercise bikes to candles. This is my second mattress review, and before this, I was testing the Otty Pure Plus. I didn't find this mattress comfortable, as a front sleeper, at all. Though my husband-to-be who is a side sleeper loved it. So, we thought we would switch our base for another hybrid option that's just a fraction of the price, for good measure. When switching to this Dusk mattress, I found it uncomfortable again as a front sleeper so I decided to try sleeping on my side, it was then that I started to find this mattress comfortable to sleep on.
Our verdict together is that this mattress in a box is an affordable pick for anyone who likes a softer base. It doesn't compromise on quality even though it has a more affordable price tag than other hybrid mattresses, and it's perfect for anyone who is looking for a breathable mattress, too.
We have sent this mattress to 2 more testers, who will be trying it for us and reporting back their verdict in a few months' time when we will be updating this review once more.
This mattress was sent to us free of charge by Dusk. They let us keep the mattress for prolonged testing which we carried out between March 2022 and May 2022. We have been allowed to keep the mattress and will be able to update the review over time.
Annie is Ideal Home's Deputy Ecommerce Editor. With four years of eCommerce experience under her belt, you can find her shopping words of wisdom on Real Homes, Gardeningetc, Livingetc, Homes & Gardens and Woman & Home. When she's not planning ahead or curating deals for Amazon Prime Day or Black Friday, you can find Annie testing a range of products in her South London home, from reed diffusers to candles, BBQs, mattresses and even a few vacuum cleaners.