Simba Hybrid Essential Mattress

Simba Hybrid Essential Mattress Review UK (2022)

Written by Nicky

Last updated: 05.08.2022

The Simba Hybrid Essential 1500 Pocket Mattress is the new budget option by Simba Sleep. 🤑

But, even as a low-height option, this mattress isn’t much cheaper than the original Simba Hybrid.

Is it worth the purchase?

Or should you save up for the original hybrid instead? 🤔

We share all you need to know in this Simba Essential mattress review!

Let’s get started. 👇

Top features of the Simba Hybrid Essential 1500 Pocket Mattress

Free delivery & returns
Free Delivery & Returns
365-day trial period
1-Year Trial Period
Money-back guarantee
Money-Back Guarantee
10-year guarantee
10-Year Warranty


  • High-quality materials.

  • Comfortable and supportive.

  • Medium-firm feel, making it suitable for a range of sleepers.

  • Good temperature regulation.

  • Free delivery & returns.

  • 1-year trial period.

  • 10-year guarantee.


  • Still quite expensive, especially for a budget mattress.

  • Mattress cover isn’t removable or washable.

  • No side handles.

What makes the Simba Essential special?

  • Low-height Simba mattress that's available at a cheaper price.

  • Same Simba quality.

  • Budget mattress with a full trial period.

Simba Hybrid vs Simba Hybrid Essential

The Simba Hybrid and the Simba Essential are largely the same, with a few small differences.

Here’s a quick overview of the most notable differences:

Simba Hybrid Simba Essential
Mattress height: 25 cm (10 inches) 20 cm (7.8 inches)
Mattress layers:

4 layers:

Open-cell, graphite-infused Simbatex foam

Up to 2500 Aerocoil mini conical pocket springs

Simba-Pure support foam with Edge Lift technology

Zoned cold foam base layer

3 layers:

Open-cell, graphite-infused Simbatex foam

Up to 1500 Aerocoil mini conical pocket springs

Multi-zoned foam base layer

Available sizes: Kids, UK Single, UK Small Double, UK Double, UK King, UK Super King, EU Single, EU Double, EU Queen UK Single, UK Small Double, UK Double, UK King
Price: From £749 From £699

Other features, like general firmness, comfort, mattress cover, delivery conditions, and trial period are all the same.

Also check out our Simba Hybrid Pro and Simba Hybrid Luxe mattress reviews.

Nonetheless, let’s take a closer look at the Simba Hybrid Essential mattress. 🕵️‍♀️

Simba Hybrid Essential mattress composition

The Simba Hybrid Essential is a pocket sprung foam mattress with a total of 3 layers. 3️⃣

The three mattress layers are:

  • Open-cell graphite-infused Simbatex foam layer
  • Up to 1500 Aerecoil mini pocket springs
  • Five-zoned foam base layer

Simba Sleep advertises the Essential as a four-layer mattress, which includes the mattress cover.

Simba essential mattress materials

We’ll look at the cover in more detail further down.

But, for now, let’s take a closer look at these mattress layers.


Simba Hybrid Essential 1500 Pocket Mattress Foam Layers
The Simba Essential has three layers.

Simba Essential mattress layers

1. Top comfort layer of graphite-infused Simbatex open-cell polyfoam

Like the Simba Hybrid, the Simba Hybrid Essential 1500 Pocket mattress has a top comfort layer made from soft, open-cell polyfoam called Simbatex.

The foam accounts for much of the comfort of the mattress. 😴

It has an open-cell structure and is thus much more breathable than closed-cell memory foam.

This allows for greater airflow and enhances the foam’s cooling properties. ❄️

The Simbatex layer is also infused with graphite, which draws heat away from the body.

2. An Aerocoil spring-comfort layer

The second layer of up to 1500 Aerocoil mini pocket springs creates much of the feel, support, and comfort of the Simba Essential.

This is also why the mattress is often called the Simba Hybrid Essential 1500 Pocket Mattress.

The conical springs distribute weight evenly, decreasing pressure points and minimising motion transfer.

simba essential mattress composition
The Simba Essential has three layers.

Made from super-strong titanium, these 25 mm (0.9 inches) micro-springs are smaller and slimmer than standard pocket springs (with a thickness gauge of 0.9 mm) but give you all the support you need. 💪

Micro-springs also adapt better to the shape of your body, offering more controlled support and pressure relief.

The titanium alloy springs are manufactured in Leeds and enclosed in a 100% polypropylene pocket.

3. Multi-zoned foam support base layer

The base layer of the Simba Hybrid Essential 1500 Pocket mattress features five separate support zones. 👌

These ensure that the mattress adjusts to your body perfectly, allowing for more sinkage where needed and more support where necessary.


All Simba Essential mattress foams are CertiPUR-certified. We’ll expand on the mattress certifications and environmental impact in the FAQ section of this article.

Simba Essential firmness

With a similar composition to the Simba Hybrid, it’s no wonder that the Essential ranks similarly in terms of firmness level.

Having tried other low-height mattresses before, we were rather surprised at just how firm the Simba Essential is. 😳

We’d rate it at 7.5 out of 10 on the Sleep Hero firmness scale, where 1 is the softest and 10 is the firmest.

Simba essential mattress firmness

This firmer feel may seem a bit unusual but makes sense if you’re considering that low-height mattresses provide less playroom in terms of sinkage.

Standard mattresses can sink in a bit and still offer good support. 👍

Low-height mattress, in contrast, lose support very quickly with sinkage.

There is simply “less mattress” to play with.


Simba Hybrid Essential 1500 Pocket Mattress Firmness
The Simba Essential is quite a firm mattress.

Measuring sinkage depths

To make sure we weren’t too biased - the level of firmness you feel does depend on your weight and build, after all - we relied on some measurements for this Simba Essential review. 🧮

For this, we measured how deeply we sank into the foams in different sleeping positions.

This allows us to gauge how the mattress responds to body weight and how much support it gives.

Simba Hybrid Essential 1500 Pocket Mattress Sinkage
We measure different sinkage depths to see how much support the Essential gives.

When testing, we always take readings at the same place:

  • Sleeping on the stomach: We measure at the stomach.
  • Sleeping on the side: We measure at the shoulders and hips.
  • Sleeping on the back: We measure at the shoulders and hips.

We’ve also included measurements of standing on the mattress, which give a good indication of maximum sinkage.

Here are our results:

Test sleeper 1 (1.80 m / 72 kg) Test sleeper 2 (1.63 m / 57 kg)
Lying on the back: Shoulder: 1.5 cm (0.5 inches)
Hips: 2.5 cm (0.7 inches)
Shoulder: No sinkage evident
Hips: 0.5 cm (0.1 inches)
Lying on the side: Shoulder: 3 cm (1.1 inches)
Hips: 4 cm (1.6 inches)
Shoulder: 0.5 cm (0.1 inches)
Hips: 1 cm (1.1 inches)
Lying on the stomach: No sinkage evident No sinkage evident
Standing in the middle: 12 cm (4.7 inches) 7.5 cm (2.9 inches)

Even though both test sleepers immediately perceived the Simba Hybrid Essential 1500 Pocket mattress as firm, we were quite surprised to see just how firm it was when taking the measurements. 📏

These very low sinkage depths are indicative of a firm mattress, and make the Essential a tad firmer than the Hybrid.

But, sinkage is still optimal to support every sleeping position.

  • The mattress gives fantastic support to stomach sleepers and back sleepers, ensuring optimal spinal alignment.
  • It also gives good support to side sleepers, allowing both shoulders and hips to sink in a little bit to enjoy optimal spinal alignment.

That said, lower-weight individuals or those of a smaller build may find the mattress a bit too firm in the side position.


person kneeling on simba hybrid essential mattress
The Simba mattress is quite firm but with average edge support.

Because there’s not much sinkage, shoulders and hips may be pushed up a little too much, causing spinal misalignment. 🤔

This would need to be assessed on a case-by-case basis though.

Luckily, the Simba Essential comes with a risk-free trial period, so you can try out the mattress to see if you like it. 🥳

Average edge support

Even though the Essential is quite firm, it does lack in terms of edge support.

This is also the one notable difference between the Simba Essential and the Simba Hybrid - the Essential lacks the EdgeLift technology layer. ⛰

This layer is meant to provide edge-to-edge support in the original hybrid mattress.

Naturally, then, you can assume that the Simba Hybrid Essential 1500 Pocket mattress offers less edge support than the Simba Hybrid. 🤷‍♀️

simba hybrid essential edge support
Edge support on the Simba Essential isn't great.

It’s still not terrible though.

If sitting or kneeling at the edge of the mattress, the lack of edge support is quite pronounced.

This is because a lot of weight is concentrated in one location. 🏖

But if you’re lying on the mattress, edge support is actually quite decent and the mattress remains incredibly comfy.

This may change slightly according to your weight and build, but you still shouldn’t ever feel as if you’re falling off the sides of the bed while sleeping.


Simba Hybrid Essential support
Further in, the Essential offers good support.

That said, we’d have a few recommendations here:

  • If you like sitting at the edge of your bed, perhaps to read, paint your nails, or put on your shoes, then you should get a mattress with better edge support.
  • If you’re sharing your bed with a partner, we’d suggest opting for a king-size mattress, just to make sure you have enough space to move comfortably without falling off.
  • If you’re of larger build or slightly heavier, you should also look into a mattress with better edge support.

If you’re using the bed by yourself, though, you’ll have an excellent night’s sleep on the Essential.

What does sleeping on the Simba Essential feel like?

The Simba Hybrid Essential mattress was surprisingly comfortable to sleep on. 😴

Here are a few things that surprised us:

  • It was much firmer than we thought it would be.
  • It was much more supportive than we thought it would be.
  • It was more comfortable to move around on than we thought it would be.

Why is this?


Simba essential mattress
We found the Simba Essential super comfortable.

Even though this is a low-height mattress, it’s worth remembering that it has almost the same composition as the Simba Hybrid.

The Simba Hybrid is one of our favourite mattresses - and one of the best mattresses in the UK. 🇬🇧

So, it makes sense that the Simba Hybrid Essential 1500 Pocket Mattress would also far surpass our expectations.


spinal alignment of side sleeper on simba essential mattress
The Simba Essential may be too firm for lighter-weight side sleepers.

Comfortable for all sleeping positions

We’re not tossers and turners, but we tried the Simba Essential in a range of sleeping positions. 🕺

It managed to support us well in all.

We could even say it was slightly too firm for lighter-weight sleepers in the side position.

This was primarily because we’d just moved over from a pillow top pocket sprung mattress, which offered a tad more softness.

But, from the image above, you can also see that there's slight spinal misalignment if side sleepers can't sink in deeply enough.

Simba Hybrid Essential back support
The Essential mattress is very supportive for back sleepers.

But, taking the sinkage tests from our review into account, you may have a similar experience.

The Simba Essential felt a little too firm for the first night or two, and then became more and more comfortable. 🌓

This is why you should also try out your mattress for a few nights - or a few weeks - to give your body the chance to get used to it.

This is especially important if the mattress you’re changing over from is vastly different. 👍


Comfortable for most body types

In our Simba Essential review, we found the mattress to be comfortable for average-weight and lighter-weight sleepers.

While we didn’t have the chance to test it with a larger-than-average person, our experience tells us that the mattress would be less comfortable for larger builds.

Simba Hybrid Essential support for side sleepers
Average-weight side sleepers will find the mattress quite comfortable.

Why is this?

Since the Simba Essential is a low-height mattress, there is only a limited depth the mattress can sink down before it starts losing support. 🏔

Even though this is a firm mattress, larger individuals are likely to sink into the foams too much, decreasing support and making the mattress less comfortable to sleep on.


Works well with a sturdy base

Thinner mattress models tend to work best with sturdy bed frames, like divan beds.


Well, a thicker mattress is generally a bit more supportive and has more weight to hold itself up.

A thinner mattress is influenced by your body weight a bit more. 🏋️‍♀️

box spring bed
Sturdy bed frames are particularly important for low-height mattresses.

If you have a thin mattress on a flimsy bed base - such as a slatted base where the slats are too far apart - you’re likely to experience a less-than-sturdy feel.

This can be very uncomfortable, especially if you’re a restless sleeper.

If you’re opting for a thinner mattress, like the Simba Essential, it’s imperative to have a good bed base that will act as a firm and sturdy support for the mattress. 🛏

Only then will you be able to experience the full comfort of the Simba Hybrid Essential 1500 Pocket mattress.

Does the Simba Hybrid Essential sleep hot?

The Simba Hybrid Essential mattress is quite temperature-neutral. ❄️

There are a few elements that play a role in this:

  • Simbatex is an open-cell foam that’s 30% more breathable than standard memory foam mattresses, allowing for more airflow.
  • The top layer is infused with cooling graphite.
  • The 1500 pocket springs increase overall breathability.
  • The side mesh cover allows heat to escape.

For our Simba Essential review, we found that the mattress regulated temperature well throughout the night. 🙌


Simba Hybrid Essential mesh side cover
The mesh side cover enhances breathability.

We tested in spring conditions, with some nights warmer and some nights cooler. 🧊

Overall, the mattress slept cooler than the pillow top mattress we’d switched over from.

Is the Simba Essential mattress good for couples?

The Simba Essential has 1500 pocket springs, which offer individually-tailored support and decrease overall motion transfer.

This makes the mattress a great choice for couples. 👩‍❤️‍👨

You’re unlikely to be disturbed by your partner at night.


Simba Hybrid Essential mattress foams with hand.
The Simba Hybrid Essential has low motion transfer.

That said, we wouldn’t recommend a low-height mattress to slightly larger-than-average builds - especially couples - as you may find overall support dwindling.

The largest mattress size for this model is also the king mattress.

Given the average edge support, couples may find a super king mattress more comfortable. 👑

For that, you’d have to go one price level up and invest in the Simba Hybrid.

Simba Hybrid Essential mattress cover

The Simba Essential features a 500 g hand-knitted top cover.

This top cover is super soft and smooth, and feels absolutely dreamy to lie on.

It’s also hypoallergenic, making it a great choice for people prone to allergies. 🤧

Simba Hybrid Essential mattress cover.
The Simba Hybrid Essential mattress has a white-and-grey cover with blue striping.

The cover also features:

  • Elegant blue stitching on the side to separate the white top cover from the grey mesh sides.
  • Grey mesh sides for enhanced breathability.
  • A bottom non-slip layer to keep your mattress firmly on its base.

There are no side handles on this mattress cover. 🙅


simba hybrid mattress cover

simba essential base layer

But, since it’s a low-height mattress that’s not very heavy, you shouldn’t struggle to rotate the mattress without.

Do not wash the cover

Unfortunately, the mattress cover is not removable or washable. 🛀

If you’ve looked through our photos, you’ll see that we did actually remove part of the cover to reveal the foams.

This is easy to do since there is a zipper.

Simba Hybrid Essential cover with zipper
The zipper is for manufacturing purposes only.

But, this zipper is for production purposes only and doesn’t stretch across the entire mattress.

If you were to take the cover off entirely, you’d have some trouble putting it on again. ⛔️

How to clean your Simba Essential

If the cover isn’t removable or washable, then how do you clean your mattress cover?

Simba Hybrid Essential mattress cover is not removable.
You cannot wash the Simba Essential mattress cover.

You can use a damp cloth to clean individual stains on the grey fabric. 🧽

To protect the top cover, we’d highly recommend investing in a waterproof mattress protector.

Mattress protectors elongate the lifespan of your mattress by safeguarding it from moisture, dirt, and bacteria. 💦

We wouldn’t dare sleep on a mattress without a protector!

Here are some of our favourite UK mattress protectors:

Simba Hybrid Essential 1500 Pocket mattress sizes

While Simba Sleep tends to offer tons of mattress sizes, the selection of Simba Essential sizes is limited.

It’s available in these dimensions:

  • Simba Essential single mattress: 90 x 190 cm (3’ x 6’3”)
  • Simba Essential small double mattress: 120 x 190 cm (4’ x 6’3”)
  • Simba Essential double mattress: 135 x 190 cm (4’6” x 6’3”)
  • Simba Essential king mattress: 150 x 200 cm (5’ x 6’6”)

This makes the Essential suitable for children, young adults, and young couples. 👩‍❤️‍👨

Standard UK mattress sizes

But, we wouldn’t recommend it to the elderly or slightly larger couples.

These groups may prefer thicker and bigger mattresses overall.


Simba Hybrid Essential depth

The Simba Hybrid Essential 1500 Pocket mattress comes at a standard height of 20 cm (7.8 inches).

Simba Hybrid Essential mattress height.
The Simba Essential measures 20 cm once fully expanded.

This is 5 cm (1.9 inches) below the bed-in-a-box industry standard. 📦

Low-height mattresses are generally much cheaper, so they’re a great option for children or guest rooms.

But higher mattresses tend to be more comfortable, look nicer in bedrooms, and make getting in and out of bed much easier. 🌟

Simba Essential mattress prices

Even though the Simba Hybrid Essential is the budget version of the Simba Hybrid, it’s surprisingly expensive - coming in at just over £50 cheaper than the actual Hybrid (for the smallest size). 💷

This makes the Essential considerably more expensive than other low-height budget mattresses.

It’s more than twice the price of the Emma Essential. 😱

It’s actually more on par with the standard mattresses from other brands, including the Nectar mattress and the Emma Original mattress.

(Note: prices listed below are standard prices excluding any current coupons & discounts)

£ 699
Small Double
£ 829
£ 829
£ 999

Simba Essential mattress discount codes

Despite these very obvious shortcomings, you’ll be pleased to find out that Simba Sleep offers frequent sales and promotions. 😅

You can get up to 55% off your Simba Essential mattress!

Don’t worry, you don’t have to spend hours searching for the best coupon codes. 🥰


Price-performance ratio
We love a good discount.

We collect all the best ones and display them on our discounts page.

If there are any sales currently running, we’ll display them throughout this page as well. 🤩

What else does Simba offer?

Simba Sleep UK offers numerous quality sleep accessories.

Some of our favourites include:

We’ve included links to these below. 👇

Our favourite Simba Sleep accessories:

Simba Essential mattress UK delivery conditions

The Simba Essential mattress is delivered within 3 business days. 🗓

Delivery is free.

Despite having a zero-contact delivery policy, your mattress can be delivered directly to a room of your choice. 🚛

Simba Hybrid Essential mattress box
Simba mattresses are delivered rolled up in cardboard boxes.

Our Simba Hybrid Essential arrived just two days after ordering.

The two-man delivery team was very kind and carried the box directly to the requested bedroom. 😁

Manoeuvring the box onto the bed frame was no problem, especially considering that the Essential is quite lightweight.


Simba Hybrid Essential mattress taking it out of the box

Simba Hybrid Essential mattress rolled up with box

Vacuum-packed and compressed

Like other Simba mattresses, the Essential is delivered rolled up and vacuum-packed in a cardboard box. 📦

And how do you get a full-size mattress from this?

It’s quite simple:

  • Place the box onto your bed frame.
  • Pull out the rolled-up mattress.
  • Cut open the plastic cover.
  • As soon as the plastic cover has been removed, the mattress will start to expand.
  • Roll it out across the frame, and remove the remaining plastic.
  • The mattress will inflate to its full size.

Inflation can take place in a matter of minutes, but it can also take a couple of hours for your mattress to be fully expanded. ⏰

imba Hybrid Essential mattress cutting plastic

Simba Hybrid Essential mattress folded up

What do you do with your old mattress?

Simba offers an old mattress removal service. 🚚

Simply select this option upon checkout, and Simba will collect your old mattress when they deliver your new one.


Does the Simba Essential smell?

You may notice some off-gassing when you unpack your mattress.

This is an odd chemical smell associated with bed-in-a-box mattresses.

Off-gassing is not toxic or harmful, but it can be unpleasant. 🧪

You should always let your mattress breathe for a bit.

Simba Hybrid Essential mattress in plastic

Simba Hybrid Essential mattress taking off the plastic

It’s also best to unpack your new mattress in a well-ventilated room. 🏡

We experienced very minimal off-gassing with the Simba Essential.

There was some smell, but you had to stick your nose right up to the mattress to smell it - and even that disappeared within a few days. 👃

As a comparison: This was not the case with the Simba mattress topper, which had a very strong chemical smell for almost a week.

Simba Essential mattress trial period

The Simba Hybrid Essential is one of the very few budget mattresses that come with a trial period.

Trial periods are great, as they allow you to try the mattress in the comfort of your own home.

You can trial the Simba mattress for one full year. 😮

Risk-free trial period
The Simba Essential comes with a 1-year trial.

This gives you ample opportunity to try it out and see if you’re comfortable.

And if you don’t like it?

Simple - you can send it back (free of charge) and get a full refund. 💰

You don’t even have to keep the Simba box.

This makes the Simba Essential a completely risk-free purchase.


Should you buy the Simba Hybrid Essential 1500 Pocket mattress?

The Simba Essential is one of the best budget mattresses we’ve tried. 💪

But, even though this is Simba Sleep’s cheapest mattress, it can’t qualify as a real budget purchase.

It's more expensive than many other standard bed-in-a-box mattresses and it’s only a tad bit cheaper than the Simba Hybrid. 🤔

Our recommendation?

Save a little extra and go for the Simba Hybrid instead.

It’s much better value for money.

If you are set on the Essential, though, we’d recommend this mattress to:

  • Those looking for an exceptional low-height mattress.
  • Children.
  • Young adults.
  • Guest bedrooms.

Bonus: With a 1-year trial period, the purchase is completely risk-free. 🥳


Contact Simba Sleep UK

Customer service: To contact Simba Sleep directly for complaints, support, or queries, please e-mail them at or visit their live online chat. The customer services team is available Monday to Friday, from 9 am - 5 pm, and Saturdays from 9 am - 1 pm.

Registered office: Simba Sleep, The Stable Yard, 60 Petty France, Westminster, London SW1H 9EU

Frequently asked questions:

  • Does the Simba Essential come with a guarantee?

    All Simba mattresses, including the Essential, come with a 10-year guarantee.

  • Simba Hybrid Essential mattress certifications

    All foams used in Simba mattresses are CertiPUR-certified.

    This means that they’re certified to be free from harmful chemicals and toxins, including destructive agents of ozone, heavy metals, mercury, or lead. 

    Simba Sleep also aims to be environmentally friendly:

    • Simba mattresses are 100% recyclable.
    • Returned Simba mattresses are refurbished or recycled, so they don’t end up in landfills. 
    • Simba mattresses are made in the UK, reducing their carbon footprint.
    • Packaging is up to 60% recycled from approved FSC sources.
    • All deliveries are 100% carbon neutral.
    • Excess foam is repurposed (for things like carpet underlays or pet beds) and not wasted. 

    In these ways, Simba aims to offer the most environmentally-friendly sleep possible.

  • Can I buy the Simba Hybrid Essential 1500 Pocket Mattress at other retailers?

    Yes, you can buy the Simba Essential at other retailers, including:

    You can’t get the Essential at John Lewis. Only the Hybrid is available there.

    We’d always recommend buying directly from Simba Sleep though.

    This gives you the best deals, plus access to the trial preiod and 10-year guarantee. 


My mum calls me "bear" because I like to sleep so much. I never knew that, one day, that would be a very useful skill. Can you tell that I've found my calling? 

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