When it comes to buying new furniture for your home, it’s easy to be a little too flippant. Especially with items that are usually out of sight and out of mind. Mattresses certainly fall under this, as typically your mattress tends not to make itself visible in the ways that other household items might.
In general, many people tend to not give much thought to mattresses as an investment. So as long as it doesn’t feel as though you’re sleeping on a hardwood slab, just how much effort are you supposed to put into buying a mattress?
Unfortunately, this soon leads to people buying mattresses that, after the first few nights, wind up being uncomfortable and stodgy. This in turn will lead to having restless sleep and a very ratty attitude in the morning to show for it.
Buying a Mattress – An Art or a Science?
To a great degree, the act of buying a mattress relies a great deal on personal taste. There is no such thing as a “perfect” mattress, as everyone’s ideal mattress is different from the other. Some want firm, other's soft. Some want springs, other's foam. Some like king size, while others prefer singles. In this regard, buying a mattress is something of an art. It’s about carefully weighing up your own preferences and ideals in finding a mattress that best suits you.
On the other hand, there’s also a flavour of science to it. Even when taking into account the matter of individualism, there are certain mattresses that will be objectively better for you than others. This largely depends on things such as the position you naturally fall to sleep in, any back or joint problems, and the matter of personal budget. In keeping with the scientific spirit, there’s also a degree of experimentation. In order to get the most out of your mattress shopping venture, you’ll want to try out a wide variety of mattresses.
Putting a Bounce in Your Step Through the Bounce in Your Bed
One thing you’ll need to consider is the support your bed offers. The core of your bed with how bouncy, and subsequently how soft or firm, a mattress is. Subsequently, the choice of mattress interior is a very important first step towards the rest of your shopping.
Innerspring mattresses are the bounciest variety of bed, and generally have the most give when sat upon. The amount of support that the mattress gives depends on the thickness of the springs used. The thinner the spring, the deeper the mattress will sink. Consider this truth if you want a spring mattress that has more support. There are a wide variety of spring types, and innerspring mattresses are highly versatile in the comfort they offer.
Softer varieties of spring mattress are useful for those who sleep on their sides or have sensitive joints. As they give more readily, they conform better to the contours of your body. If you do suffer from sensitive joints, consider thin springs. You can make the mattress softer by buying a quilted-top mattress or by placing down a replaceable mattress pad.
Memory foam mattress have more resistance to them, and you’ll find that you won’t really sink too far beyond the topmost layer when laying across it. This firmness makes it great for those who prefer to sleep on their backs, as it lends to better support for the spine. Softer varieties of foam mattresses are also great for those who sleep on their sides or have sore joints.
As memory foam moulds itself more readily to your natural sleeping position, many people swear by it if they have trouble getting comfortable at night. It also makes it great if you suffer from a sore back.
Be aware that memory foam mattresses vary in their quality. If you’re looking at taking a foam mattress home with you, be sure to ask how thick the foam is and its density. The thicker it is, the more you’ll sink while a good quality density is five pounds of foam per cubic foot. Anything at three pounds or less is probably not worth considering. Lull memory foam mattresses have satisfied reviews and are sold for a fair price. Try various options to see what is best for you.
Finally, latex mattresses are still firm, yet offer a little more bounce than memory foam does. Further, latex is antimicrobial and therefore more resistant to mould and mildew than other types. Another advantage is found during warmer seasons – latex disperses heat more effectively than foam or spring mattresses, making them cooler to sleep upon.
The Economy of Mattresses
You may find that there is quite a wide range of prices for mattresses, and you may be tempted to follow the conventional wisdom that the more expensive something is the better it must be. This is not necessarily true. When shopping, avoid the temptation to buy the first mattress you see.
Shop around, compare prices, and test each bed you come across. What you’ll actually find is that many perfectly comfortable mattresses can be found much cheaper than you may expect and that high-mark mattresses may come with unforeseen problems that’ll make you regret your purchase further down the line. For example, a quilted innerspring mattress may feel great when you first buy it, but eventually the quilted cover will deflate and offer less comfort. You’ve essentially paid extra for a mattress that feels more or less the same as one without the quilting.
You must also consider the lifespan of your mattress. A good mattress may last as few as four to as many as ten years with good care. Many mattresses may come with warranties; however, you’ll find claiming on them a difficult task. Most contain fine print that can void a repayment, replacement, or repair for the slightest of excuse. In addition, you’ll be hard pressed to find one that covers general wear and tear. In short, warranties are a way to squeeze a few extra dollars from you. Don’t fall for this; instead, try to buy a mattress you know is durable and long-lasting to get the most from your money.
Also, be sure to ask the salesperson how long you can expect a mattress to last and whether the warranty that may come with it will cover things such as busted springs, torn fabric, mildew, or stains. Make sure you also ask them to see the warranty before you sign anything, and read through it carefully. Otherwise, do not make the purchase.
Testing the Waters
Test your mattress in store before you buy it. Most shoppers will only do preliminary trials at best. Things such as pressing down on it with their hand, maybe sitting on the side and bouncing slightly, or just purchasing based on how it looks at first glance.
It’s important to be more thorough. Ask any retail assistants what the mattress is made of and whether it has any variations (such as thickness for foam, or different spring types for innersprings). Physically get up and lay across the mattress in a sleeping or lounging position. Keep it up for ten to twenty minutes, so you can see whether the comfort lasts for long periods. Some mattress may feel comfy at first, only to grow steadily worse as time goes on. If the mattress is foam or latex, move around occasionally – how hard is it to move? How quickly did you become comfortable again?
Do not feel intimidated at the thought of lounging on a display bed. Any store that knows what they’re doing will be perfectly fine with this, just make sure you take your shoes off first so as not to muddy the sheets!
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