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How To Go Mattress Shopping

Mattress Shopping Tip #: Look At The Warranties

Beducation® – Mattress shopping tips and 2013 Consumer Reports® mattress guide review

Its a good idea in general to look over warranties before you make any large purchases. Mattresses are no exception. Most of the brands out there offer a 10-year limited warranty under which theyll replace, repair, or re-cover your mattresses if any manufacturing defects or issues related to workmanship appear. Typically, these issues are defined as a 1 sag in the mattress with no weight applied, or cracks in the foams. The warranties usually only cover the original purchaser and do not extend outside of the United States.

Weve seen a few brands, such as WinkBed and Layla Sleep, offer lifetime or Forever warranties. These usually have tiers. For example, the first 10 years have better coverage than years 11+. After the 10-year mark, the warranty is a lot less favorable. We just want to point out that lifetime warranties are great, but they generally have extra stipulations.See All Mattress Deals

How Much Should You Spend On Your Mattress

While its very important not to exceed your budget and put stress on your finances by buying a bed, you do need to consider a mattress as a significant investment in your physical and mental health. Expensive does not always mean better, so you may look for brands who endeavor to keep costs low by cutting costs in the supply chain or by selling exclusively online.

Interested in reading more? View our guide for best budget mattresses here.

How Much To Spend On A Mattress

Many people who I talk to have no idea what a mattress is supposed to cost. They hear specials on the TV along the lines of pillowtop mattresses, queen size sets for only $299! and they assume that its for a good quality every night use bed, and there are options even less than that.

The mattress industry does itself a disservice by advertising like this because thats usually the absolute rock bottom as far as price and quality go.

So how much should I spend on a mattress? You can find a mattress and boxspring set for as low as $200 all the way up to as high as you want to spend. For example, a Tempurpedic Grand Bed with a motorized base can run you almost 10,000 dollars, and that isnt even the most expensive mattress. So how much should you spend?

Ill give a breakdown of what you can expect at each price range. This will vary by retailer and by region. If you live in the northeast, the prices will be towards the higher end, if you are in the middle of nowhere, the prices might be a little less. Additionally, these prices are for a queen sized mattress and box spring sets. Subtract ~100-300 for the boxspring, or multiply by ~50% for a king.

$0-200: This is probably a used mattress from Craigslist. Eww.

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How To Choose The Right Mattress Size

If youre on the fence about which mattress size to get, it makes sense to go big, if it fits within your budget and space constraints. Though a queen or king isnt crucial when you have the whole bed to yourself, most people find its worth the upgrade if you feel more comfortable sprawling out. And if you sleep with someone else, a bigger bed could greatly improve your quality of sleep. With more room, youll be less likely to notice the other person moving around. Youll also be less scrunched up, which means that if youre prone to muscle and joint pain, your back, neck, and shoulders will probably feel better in the morning. This is particularly true if your kids or pets join you in bed.

As you can see in the chart below, for couples, a king-size mattress provides each person the same amount of space as a twin. In contrast, if they opt for a full, each will end up with as much elbow room as they would have in a crib, as The Better Sleep Council reminds us.

California king 72 by 84

When To Change Your Mattress

Mattress Shopping During the Pandemic

Aside from tracking the number of years left for your mattress type, one way to know its time to change is if youve been getting constant body aches not related to external factors like long hours at work or a recent workout attempt.

Also, do regular checks to see if your mattress has lost its springiness and elasticity if youve got indented craters where your bum or upper back tend to go, thats another indicator that its time to go mattress shopping.

Pro-tip: To make your mattress last longer, flip or rotate it 3 times a year to avoid compressing only specific parts of the mattress.

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Comfort And Support: Whats The Best Ratio

Every body requires a different recipe of comfort and support, and the amount you require depends on how many curves you have, where they are, and how much you weigh. Though our reviews tend to address feel based on average sized people, each item in this category may be experienced differently by differently shaped individuals.


All mattresses should contain a blend of comfort or softness and support Beds with enhanced support systems may feel firmer than beds with enhanced comfort. Folks who are considerably heavier will often experience a brand as softer than sleepers who are much lighter because of the ability of their body to press through layers.

Need more details? Check out our complete mattress firmness guide.

Pressure Relief

Often referred to as comfort, pressure relief is typically delivered by softer materials at the top of the mattress that conform to your curves. When your bed molds to the line of your body, excess pressure is less likely to build up, which can cause discomfort and restless sleeping. Those who are extra curvy or who have sore joints often prefer mattresses that have enhanced comfort systems.


Spine Alignment

Then Test It Againat Home

Be sure theres a generous return/exchange policy on your new purchase, because “ultimately, youll be making the decision at home, not the showroom, says Bils. A mattress needs to be slept on to access the firmness and support you want. The trial period can take up to two weeks. If by this time your body doesnt adjust, its not you. The mattress isnt a match, says Steyskal.

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Compare The Top Brands

Below is a brief summary of the top six brands that we carry. When you see the brand that fits your needs, you are done with this section and ready to select the model that’s right for you. Just click over and start shopping. You can complete your selections online, or you can call one of our mattress experts who will help you select the right mattress.

Innerspring / Hybrid Mattresses

7 Most Common Mattress Shopping Mistakes

Most mattresses youre likely to run into are the innerspring type. They have metal coils inside of the mattress with foams and fibers on the top.

The lower priced mattresses tend to use the older style coil in which theyre all tied together. The hourglass-shaped ones are called Bonnell coils, but other manufacturers have stronger variations on that type . These are generally a little less expensive than the individually wrapped coil, but dont contour as well and transfer more motion.

On the left are Sealy classic coils that are all tied together. On the right are the higher end individually wrapped coils.

The better innerspring mattresses will use individually wrapped coils. This type of coil allows the mattress to contour to your body from the coil level, which gives better support and causes less pressure. Additionally, wrapped coils are better at separating motion from side to side on the bed. So if one person bounces around or changes positions, the partner will not feel it as much. The downside? Theyre usually more expensive.

The foams above the coils will have varying densities. You can get a mattress with firmer foams on the top or softer foams on the top. Some will be in the style of a pillowtop .

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Sealy Response Performance Elm Avenue Firm

This ultra-firm foam mattress comes with both cool gel foam and air foam for added support. Ranked a 7 out of 10 on the firmness scale, Sealy uses its proprietary Posturepedic Technology to target the heaviest parts of your body with reinforced support. Youll also get a 120-night trial with the mattress.

The Mattress Has Been In Use For More Than Seven Years

The lifespan of a mattress depends on a lot of factors like wear& tear, the material used, sleeping habits and much more. For instance, if your mattress is used every night , it is more likely to undergo deterioration than the one that is not used as often.

Similarly, if your current mattress is made of latex, it is more likely to have a longer lifespan. However, irrespective of all these factors, time is crucial and if you have been using your mattress for more than seven years, it is time to switch it up.

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How We Test Mattresses

We test queen-size mattresses because theyre the most common size purchased.

We subject each mattress to a battery of lab tests and use human subjects of small and large stature to gauge how well the mattress supports a range of body sizes who sleep on either their side or back. We also have a machine push and pull a 310-pound wood roller across the mattress 30,000 times to simulate someone tossing and turning for eight to 10 years.And though our scientific ratings for support are a good proxy for how well you might sleep on a mattress, we also provide ratings for comfort and satisfaction that come from people who’ve actually lived with these mattressesfor up to 10 years in some cases.

Our comfort and owner satisfaction ratings are based on data from recent surveys on CR members’ experiences with almost 70,000 mattresses purchased within the last decade. We asked members to rate the comfort of their mattress, and we used the data to generate ratings by brand and type of mattress. Note that a brand’s comfort score for its innerspring mattresses can be different from that for its foam mattresses. Owner satisfaction is based on a member’s overall judgment of factors such as firmness/softness, value, quality of sleep, and more.

Helix Dawn Firm Mattress

Why Is It Confusing To Buy Mattress Online

This mattress is Helixs firmest model, ideal for back and stomach sleepers the dawn combines both memory plus foam and the companys own foam layers to create pressure relief on the body. It offers added support through multiple layers of high-density foam, but is still breathable, according to the brand. It comes with a 100-night trial, and its firmness is rated 8.5 out of 10 on the firmness scale.

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Pricing X Factor Frames & Bases

Since modern mattresses arent all made to be flipped like traditional innerspring, few will work on your leftover frame and boxspring. Factor in the price of a new base. Nearly all mattresses these days work on flat surfaceslike the floor or a platform without a box spring. Adjustable bases work, too. Adjustable bases can prop you up for easy phone, computer and tablet use or lay you flat for sleeping. Adjustables are great for people who need to elevate their heads to ease sleep apnea or their feet for circulation. Most modern mattresses will work with an adjustable base, but they can add $800 or more to your total.

How To Choose The Right Mattress For Your Sleep Position

If your body isnt properly supported while you sleep, you can start experiencing weird aches and pains. As we mentioned above, neck and shoulder pain could indicate that your pillows arent doing their job. But back pain or other types of discomfort might mean that you need a more supportive mattress. Regardless of your preferred sleep position, the goal is to get to a place where spinal support and pressure-point relief intersect.

As is the case when youre standing, proper spinal alignment is important when youre lying down. Your spine should more or less be straight, except for that subtle curve inward toward the belly, in your lower back.

Pressure points are the bony or heavier parts of your bodysuch as the shoulders, hips, or kneesthat press against the surface of the bed. They vary depending on your sleep position. Pressure-point relief is helpful from a musculoskeletal standpoint if you have muscle or joint issues. For instance, if youre a side-sleeper with hip pain or rotator-cuff tendinitis , youll want a mattress that isnt too firm, so it doesnt put excessive pressure on these painful areas.

In general, here are the features you should look for based on your sleep position, as well as tips on how to check for good alignment:

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If You Cant Shop In Person

Because factors such as comfort, support, and firmness are so subjective, weve always recommended trying a mattress in person before you buy. Even though thats still the best way to tell whether a specific bed is right for you, we know thats not possible for everyone right now. But if you decide to roll the dice and shop entirely online, we suggest you opt for either a two-sided mattress with multiple firmness options or a mattress with a solid, lengthy return policy.

For instance, the flippable, all-latex Zenhaven, our favorite latex mattress, should appeal to sleepers of all positions. The mattress Luxury Plush side offers good pressure relief for side-sleepers, and its Gentle Firm side provides extra support for back- and stomach-sleepers. The company offers a 180-night trial period, during which you can return the mattress for a full refund, minus the $100 transportation cost. The Charles P. Rogers Estate SE, which consists of coils and latex, is also flippable . You can try it for 100 days and return it for free .

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Best Mattress Buying Guide

How to Buy a Mattress – The Mattress Buying Process

Which brand? What type? Where from? How much? What is the best mattress? These are the questions that are likely running through your mind when buying a new mattress. Well, youve come to the right place. In this guide, Ill help you answer all of those questions and youll be having sweet dreams in no time!

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Firm Mattresses For Back Support To Shop In 2021

Select is editorially independent. Our editors selected these deals and items because we think you will enjoy them at these prices. If you purchase something through our links, we may earn a commission. Pricing and availability are accurate as of publish time.

You spend a lot of your life in bed, and anyone whos had a poor-quality mattress knows how much it can affect your sleep. But if you feel like youre constantly sinking into your mattress or dont get enough support while you sleep, it may be time to consider a firmer mattress.

Finding a mattress that offers the right amount of cushion and support can absolutely help you to have a better night’s sleep, said Meghan Hunter, senior editor at Mattress Nerd. To help you narrow down the sheer amount of mattress options online, we spoke to experts about features to look for in a firm mattress and used their advice to round up highly rated options on top of their own recommendations.

How To Choose A Crib Mattress

There are several essential elements of choosing a crib mattress. Any crib mattress purchase should start first and foremost with safety. Key aspects of crib mattress safety include:

  • Choosing a firm crib mattress as this can reduce the risk of Sudden Infant Death Syndrome .
  • Keeping the mattress clear of soft objects, including toys, blankets, and pillows. Loose and soft items can pose a risk of suffocation and SIDS and should not be kept in an infants crib.

Beyond safety, there are other factors to review that relate to the convenience and usability of a crib mattress:

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Dont Go Broke Buying One

No matter who you are, mattress buying is an investment, but theres no reason to break your finances and gouge your savings to buy a new bed. There are fantastic sleep solutions out there that should match what you need, regardless of your budget, so sit down ahead of time and decide what money you are willing to spend before you begin looking.

What Are The Potential Risks For Body Impressions

How to Choose the Best Mattress When Shopping Online ...

All types of mattresses are prone to body impressions . For foam and hybrid mattresses, the cheaper and less dense the foam, and the heavier your weight, the higher the risk of depressions over time. For innerspring mattresses, the thicker the pillow or Euro top, the higher the imprint vulnerability. Its hard to completely avoid body indentations if you want a plush-feeling mattress, but you can minimize the effect by rotating the mattress at least every six months and varying where you sleep on it. Quilting on the top of the mattress does help make indentations less noticeable, and the steel coils found in innerspring mattresses also offer additional support to prevent sagging, even if body impressions are bound to happen over time. Mattress makers have told us its hard to quilt through dense polyfoams .

Compared with memory foam, all-latex mattresses or innersprings topped with latex are more resistant to sagging and body impressions, regardless of a persons weight. Even great components wont guarantee the mattress will last that long , but theyll decrease the risk of disappointment in the long run.

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