10 Things You Need To Know Before You Buy A Mattress
You don’t buy a new bed every day. So you want to get it right. Especially when you can easily spend $1,000, $2,000, and even $5,000 or more at a department or specialty bedding store (that is, if you don’t know better).
With so many different brands, different prices, and so-called discounts, it can be very confusing to know which mattress to choose. Here are 10 things you need to know before you buy a new mattress.
Same Mattress, Different Name.
Have you wondered why no two store sells the same mattress? Although they look similar, the name at one department store is different to another, which is different to the chain speciality bedding stores.
The truth is, most mattresses in Australia are made by 3 companies. But, to make it diffi cult for you to compare mattresses (and prices) from one store to another, the manufacturer puts a different label on the mattress depending on which store is selling it.
So, the only difference between the $1,000 mattress you are looking at in one store, and the $1,500 mattress in another store, may be the label.
Apart from straight foam and straight latex mattresses (which are not very common), all mattresses contain springs. Some have Bonnell Springs (hour glass shaped springs held between a wire hoop at the top and bottom) or Pocket Springs (individual springs that are independently wrapped in a thin layer of fabric).
No matter what fancy names manufacturers give their springs, or what quantity of springs or zones their mattresses have, they are essentially the same. In fact, most springs are made by one manufacturer in China and shipped in compressed form to mattress companies all around the world including Australia.
Pocket Spring mattresses tend to cost a little more than Bonnell Spring mattresses but offer a genuine advantage in terms of less partner disturbance.
In order to maintain support right to the edges, an extra piece of wire can be connected to the top and bottom hoops of a Bonnell Spring mattresses and a strong foam box can be added to a Pocket Spring Mattress.
Edge supports add genuine benefit because they allow you to sleep or sit right on the edge of the bed without the side collapsing.
Edge supports should add around $100 to the price of a Bonnell Spring mattress and around $200 to the price of a Pocket Spring mattress depending if the support goes all the way around or if it is just added to the sides.
The type of foam used in a mattress will not only affect its feel, it will significantly affect the longevity of the mattress. Foams are measured in two ways. Firstly there is the feel – hard or soft. Then there is the density – high or low. The feel is what makes one mattress plush and another fi rm. The density is what makes one foam last longer than another.
You can get a soft mattress in low or high density. Density does not affect the feel. But it will make a big difference to how long your mattress will last. Density is what costs money. So before you buy a mattress, be sure to ask about the density of the foams inside.
The first layer (on top of the springs) is usually the lowest density (20-25kg/m2 is usually fi ne for this layer). But many manufacturers continue to use low density (20kg/m2 or lower) for the top comfort layers. While you won’t notice this when you first feel your new mattress, it will become obvious as the foam breaks down and you end up sleeping in a hollow (sometimes as quickly as just a few months).
Memory foam is a term used to describe foams that have a slow ‘bounce’. In other words, once de-pressed, they take a few seconds to regain their original shape. Gel foam is a term used to describe foam that is infused with a special gel substance. Both memory and gel foams feel similar to touch. But because some people fi nd memory foams hot to sleep on (due to the fact you tend to sink into the foam more), the addition of gel particles encourages air fl ow and a cooler sleeping surface. Although used as a marketing gimmick by many manufacturers, we do see some benefi t in using gel infused memory foam if you tend to feel hot when you sleep.
Like foam, not all latex is the same. Genuine latex is highly elastic and will last for many years. Synthetic and hybrid latex becomes brittle over time.
7. Pillow Top
The term pillow top refers to the extra comfort layers usually only on one side of the mattress. This provides an extra soft sleeping surface for those who like a plush feel. Once again, the most important thing is what is inside the pillow top – namely, the density of foam. A low density foam may feel luxurious at first, but as it breaks down you may feel like you are sleeping in a hollow.
8. Non Flip Mattresses
In some ways, this is another industry gimmick. The fact that most people don’t like to flip their mattress each month has lead manufacturers to say things like ‘non-flip technology’.
What this really means is that the mattress only has comfort layers on one side. So in a way, this has enabled manufacturers to save money on manufacturing while charging more. A mattress that can be flipped will generally last twice as long as a single side mattress (provided you do actually flip it).
9. Plush Top
Some people like the look and feel of the ‘cloud-like’ comfort layers incorporated into the quilting of some mattresses. The problem is, this layer usually flattens quickly. Some salespeople say, “Your mattress will settle and mould to your body shape over time.” The truth is, the fluffy quilting is simply getting fl at. We advise against plush quilting because if you like the plush feel, you will soon be disappointed as the quilting flattens. If you do like a particularly soft surface layer, we recommend inserting a thin layer of high density memory foam in the quilting. It feels amazing and will not flatten.
10. Are Expensive Mattresses worth It?
As you now know, the internal components of most mattresses are pretty much the same. And the most important part is the comfort layers (i.e. the density / quality of the foam). But no matter what fancy names are given to a mattress or it’s components – including terms relating to the type or number or springs – if you’re paying $5,000 for a mattress, we think you are being ripped off.
We’ll be thrilled to guide you on your quest for a new mattress on any of our 4 locations or directly on our online store here at https://www.dialabed.com.au. Our team of experts is ready to help you finding your ideal mattress for the best sleep quality you can get.