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How To Know What Mattress To Buy



Experts agree that getting good sleep is one of the single best ways to maintain and improve our health. A mattress is a huge factor in our ability to sleep well, yet many people overlook its importance and keep using a mattress that fails to provide enough support and comfort.




how to know what mattress to buy



Finding the right mattress can feel overwhelming. Start your search by using our mattress quiz below, which will help determine your best bed based on sleep position, body weight, and other key factors.


There are myriad potential causes of back pain, but an unsupportive mattress is one factor that should not be underestimated. In people without back problems, proper support may prevent pain from arising, and in people who already have back issues, the right mattress may help with cushioning and comfort.


Choosing the best mattress for back pain means considering the nature of that pain alongside other mattress needs and preferences. Some back pain is short-term and comes on suddenly. This is known as acute back pain. Other times, the pain persists over a long period of time and is known as chronic back pain. Back problems can start out as acute, such as from an injury, and become chronic.


A person with acute back pain may need only temporary relief from their mattress. This may mean using extra pillows or adjusting their sleeping position. For chronic back pain, more significant steps may be needed, such as choosing a mattress that is firmer or softer. Finding the right levels of comfort as well as pressure relief can help keep the spine properly oriented during sleep.


In general, side sleepers should look for Medium Soft to Medium Firm mattresses that can cushion their impact points. Back and stomach sleepers should look for Medium Firm to Firm beds that have only light conforming.


In some cases, poor posture can create undue tension in the middle or upper back. A pressure-relieving mattress that contributes to spinal alignment can reduce the risk of this kind of pain. Having a quality pillow with the right amount of loft can also ensure that the neck and upper spine have adequate support.


The answers to these questions can provide key insight to help choose a mattress. The parts of your body that need more support in order to maintain spinal alignment vary based on your sleeping posture. For that reason, choosing a mattress to suit your sleeping position can boost comfort and help avoid aches and pains.


Side sleepers have sharp pressure points where the body is the widest, most notably at the shoulders and hips. On a too-soft mattress, those points will dip out of line with the rest of the spine. On a too-firm mattress, they will feel the impact at those points and be prone to misalignment. Consequently, side sleepers do best with Medium Soft to Medium Firm mattresses.


People between 130 and 230 pounds can generally follow our suggestions for mattress firmness based on sleeping position in the previous section. Foam, hybrid, and latex mattresses are all solid options and can be selected based on their specific features and designs.


People over 230 pounds will sink further into a mattress, especially near heavier parts of the body, which can risk throwing off spinal alignment. These sleepers usually have better results with mattresses that are a bit firmer to help avoid that risk.


A responsive mattress is easier to move on top of, and this can be valuable to people over 230 pounds because it reduces the chances of feeling stuck in the bed. Latex and hybrid options tend to be the most responsive.


Durability is important to sleepers of any weight, but people over 230 pounds can cause more wear in the top layers of a mattress. For this reason, sleepers with a higher body weight often opt for a mattress with a thicker comfort system that uses high-density materials.


The price range for mattresses stretches from extremely low-cost, low-quality models all the way up to six-figure designer beds. Looking past these outliers, most mattresses cost between $600 and $2,000.


Good sleep is vital for children. Kids need more hours of sleep than adults, and sleeping well is important during all stages of childhood development. Outfitting their bed with a quality mattress is a central part of making sure that children get the sleep that they need.


One key difference is that safety is a greater concern when shopping for beds for children, especially infants who sleep in cribs. Assuring that the mattress meets safety guidelines is of the utmost importance.


Depending on how old a child is, they may be able to use a smaller size (Twin or Twin XL) of a bed designed for adults. In other cases, parents may prefer a mattress built specifically for children. Choosing from the pool of beds available to adults means a wider selection of mattress types, models, and brands.


The cost of a mattress for kids can be another point of divergence. Many beds for kids are smaller and thinner, and the reduced amount of materials can make them less expensive. However, there are some beds for children that are designed with lots of extra features and can carry a price tag similar to that of an adult mattress.


A topper sits on top of your current bed and goes underneath the fitted sheet. It can change the feel of your mattress and is most useful if your main focus is on adjusting the firmness level. Some toppers may be able to add contouring, motion isolation, or bounce in relation to your old bed as well.


When reviewing those factors in the context of mattress toppers, make sure to think about your existing mattress because it will work along with the topper to affect the overall feel of your bed. For example, if you have a bouncy innerspring, be aware that it will still transfer motion even with a memory foam topper.


Lexie Sachs (she/her) is the executive director of the Textiles, Paper and Apparel Lab at the Good Housekeeping Institute, where she researches, tests and reports on fabric-based products ranging from sheets, mattresses and towels to bras, fitness apparel and other clothing. She also evaluates luggage, rain gear, disposable paper goods and baby products. Lexie has more than 15 years of experience in the textiles industry and a degree in fiber science from Cornell University. Prior to joining GH in 2013, she worked in merchandising and product development in the fashion and home industries.


Many people approach mattress shopping in the wrong way, by focusing solely on measures of firmness level or sleep position, considering only the price, or choosing materials and technology touted in an ad. But that approach might land you a not-so-comfy mattress that you could regret buying.


As the name suggests, an innerspring mattress uses a system of connected metal springs, or coils, to support the weight of your body. A top layer of soft, fabric-encased padding (aka the comfort layer) provides cushioning and contouring without the sinking sensation of memory foam. In general, a quality innerspring mattress offers good edge support, is more breathable (and thus cooler) than its all-foam counterparts, and comes in a range of firmness levels to accommodate a variety of preferences.


Most online mattresses come with a free trial period of about 100 days or so, if you buy it directly from the company. You might be required to try a mattress for 30 days before you can initiate a return, though. Third-party retailers, such as Amazon, department stores, and mattress stores, might have their own rules, whether you purchased the mattress online or in a brick-and-mortar store.


One of the best things to happen to the mattress industry is access to online shopping. Buying online means that customers can purchase directly from the manufacturer rather than a third-party retailer. As a result, this cuts down on costs, and consumers have more access to top-tier mattresses at lower prices. Additionally, many brands offer holiday deals for extra savings on their beds.


Innerspring is the most traditional mattress form. These beds feature a coil unit and above it, a thin layer of cushioning. Hybrids, which contain coils and layers of foam on top, are also under the innerspring umbrella even though they vary from the traditional construction. The four types of coils found in innerspring beds are Bonnell, encased, offset, and continuous. Encased coils are usually found in hybrid models.


We suggest the DreamCloud Luxury Hybrid for a great innerspring mattress. The coils in the DreamCloud are individually wrapped, so you get the benefits of springs but reduced motion transfer, which is great for couples. Additionally, the DreamCloud comes with gel-infused memory foam for pressure relief and comfort.


Latex mattresses are known for their cooling, sustainability, responsiveness, and comfort. Authentic latex foam is made from the Hevea-Brasilenis tree, specifically from the white liquid extracted from it. Latex is harvested, and when the excess water is removed, you end up with raw material fantastic for various products, bedding systems being one of them.


We suggest The WinkBeds EcoCloud for a great Latex mattress. This mattress features a 4-inch thick Talalay latex layer designed to provide firmer support in the lower back and softer cushioning in the shoulders and hips.


Memory foam was first developed by NASA as a safety material for seat cushions to protect pilots and passengers during plane crashes. Since then, the material has blossomed into the burgeoning product employed by virtually every mattress maker.


We suggest the Nectar Original for a great memory foam mattress. The Nectar is rated exceptionally well for motion isolation and has a medium-firm feel that should complement most people well. Plus, they infuse gel in their memory foam to help keep the material cool.


We suggest the Leesa Original for a great memory foam mattress. The Leesa contains a layer of cooling Avena foam above the memory foam layer to help with temperature regulation and keep sleepers comfortable.


We also suggest the Aurora Luxe for a great adjustable mattress. With the Aurora Luxe, shoppers can purchase this mattress in one of three firmness options: Soft, Medium, and Firm. By allowing this customization option, shoppers have a better chance of finding a bed that meets their needs better. Sleepers can use the Aurora Luxe on an adjustable base to further customize their experience. 041b061a72