Welcome to our ultimate mattress buying guide!
Buying a new mattress can be an intimate, yet intimidating experience. This article will explain everything you need to think about in the process of how to choose a mattress.
After all, you are going to spend a thousand dollars or more on a brand-new mattress, that you’ll be using for every day in six-seven years. Maybe you’ll share it with a significant other, too!
Save your nervousness and confusion, without further hubbub, we will get you to the right product.
Let’s dig into finding out the ultimate mattress that fits your every need!
First of all, let’s ask ourselves…
- 1 Do you need a new mattress?
- 2 Types of mattresses on the market
- 3 Conclusion
Do you need a new mattress?
Let’s start by reexamine whether or not you need to buy a new mattress.
Did you know that a lot of people make the mistake of spending a grand on a brand-new bed that they don’t even need?
For some, buying a mattress topper may be the most economical thing to do.
Actually, there are three indicators that maybe you need a new mattress.
1. The age of your mattress
Most mattresses are constructed and tested for 10 years of use. It’s best that you think about how to choose a mattress around the time period of its suggested useful life.
Typically, people get a new mattress between year 7 and year 12. A few use their mattress for up to 15 years. The number depends a lot on their personal pain tolerance and budget. So, if you’re in that range, you probably should be looking for a new bed.
2. Sagging or Body Impressions
People need to rotate their beds between 2 – 4 times per year.
However, a lot doesn’t know that they need to do that. Which results in either a huge crater in the center of the mattress (because that’s where they’re sleeping); or they get one side that wears out much more quickly than the other.
If your mattress is:
- Having a body impression when no weight is on it, of about a half an inch, or maybe an inch or a quarter.
Then you’re basically sleeping on a compromised mattress, and it’s high time we chose a new one.
On a side note, an improper foundation can result in sagging in your mattress. You need a foundation that is solid and doesn’t have any give to it.
Some users have a mattress that was just fine, and they put it on a foundation that doesn’t meet the criteria for their warranty. Over 1 year or so, the mattress starts sagging, but now they can’t access the warranty and get a new bed.
Therefore, make sure you read through the warranty criteria and store your new mattress properly.
3. Aches and Pains
If you are experiencing:
- Low back pain;
- Upper back pain;
- Pain in your hips;
Then you must think about choosing a new mattress, definitely. Your mattress might be making things worse for you. Remember to always consult your physician and your chiropractor so that you can figure out the best mattress for your situations.
We are by no means your physicians or chiropractors, but we do have some good mattress recommendations for low back pain, upper back pain, and sciatica.
Now, when you know that you do need to know how to choose a mattress, let’s hop on to the categories of mattress there are on the market.
Types of mattresses on the market
Categorize Mattresses by Materials
There are two common types of mattresses that you’ll see, categorizing by the materials.
1. All-foam mattresses
As the name indicates, these mattresses are entirely made of foam. The manufacturers make them at a fairly lower cost, and they are typically lighter.
These all-foam beds are the most viable options online because as they are light and sellers can ship them in a box via FedEx or UPS. The sellers even offer free returns sometimes because of the lightness!
That is the reason the number of brands selling all-foam mattresses is steadily increasing.
Even in all-foam mattresses, there is also a variety of material foams:
- Polyurethane Foam
- Memory Foam
- Latex Foam
- Proprietary Foam
2. Hybrid mattresses
Manufacturer of hybrid mattresses combines two types of material that are dissimilar. You may see coils and foam, or coils and gel, or gel and foam or air and foam.
The material of which the mattress is made, be it all-foam or hybrid, doesn’t really say anything about the Firmness Profile of that mattress. It really just says something about its construction.
So, what is the Firmness Profile of a mattress? Read on to see.
We categorize firmness into five different categories:
While petite and light individuals don’t need a lot of firmness, people on the heavier side put a lot of weight on the mattress. Therefore, they need firmer beds to feel supported.
The firmness also affects your comfort level, depending on your sleeping position. We will go into that now.
Your mattress should have the support you need to lie comfortably on your preferred sleeping side.
Strict Side Sleepers
You’ll generally want between soft and medium soft mattresses if you are a strict side sleeper. Softer mattresses allow nice pressure relief for your shoulders and your hips, in particular.
This, however, is more of an art than a science because everybody’s different.
Firmness is a little bit subjective. Someone petite can choose any bed she wants, but if she sleeps strictly on her side and she needs good pressure relief, she probably has to buy a little bit softer of a mattress.
On the other side, someone who has a sore body, or someone who’s on the heavier side, puts a lot more stress on a mattress, so that person can get away with mattresses that are little bit firmer.
Back or Stomach Sleepers
These people need similar mattresses in terms of firmness. You’ll want to look for a bit firmer of mattresses to keep your hips and your spine in proper alignment. If it’s too soft, your hips are going to sag down. Young ladies sleeping on their stomachs probably want a little bit softer than what a guy wants, for some obvious reasons.
Again, this varies by person and by your weight; but in general, think firm.
Now, for combination sleepers, you rotate positions at night. I think a lot of people do this, and it might be the most popular category of sleeping positions.
You need a high-quality mattress. One that’s soft but not too soft. One that provides pressure relief, but not too much. You also need to play to your dominant sleeping position.
Somebody who sleeps mostly on their side would need a bit more pressure relief. But that person still needs the mattress to be supportive, so he can rotate on his stomach or his back. Make sure you pay attention to the guide on the seller’s site. They always point out if the mattress is good for a combination sleeper or not.
This one is a bit harder to please, because you are trying to match two people up right. You have to worry about weight, size, sleeping preferences, and what sleeping positions you guys sleep in, so it can be a little bit harder to figure out.
For example, my girlfriend is petite, and I’m not. She sleeps hot, I sleep cool. And that’s not even counting the fact that we sleep in different sleeping positions. So, you really have three options here:
1. Get a split king size, or a queen king bed where each side is different and customized to each partner.
(2. Let your girlfriend/wife chooses, because she’s always right.
2. Get a custom mattress.
3. Make some compromise, and each of you gets some of what you want.
Choose a mattress based on Weight and Size
This is really key when you learn how to choose a mattress.
Lighter individuals – the majority of which are youngsters, college students or people in their 30s – can get away with almost anything. These people can pretty much sleep on any mattress they want, as long as they’re under 250 pounds.
Nevertheless, if you’re over 250 pounds or in that range, you need to be a little bit more selective with your mattress. The list of beds you can choose from is narrowed, but lucky for you, we will also do a list of favorite mattresses for heavier individuals.
Those who fall on the heavier side don’t really need to spend a ton of money on a new mattress. However, just know that as you are bigger, you are putting more stress on the bed, so something with coils and extra support will do better. There are also a lot of affordable mattress options out there for you to pick from.
Now let’s get to know the last thing, but obviously the most important for some people.
Price and Budget
I would like to emphasize that you don’t need to concentrate so much on the price. The cost of the mattress is indeed important, but it’s not the biggest factor in choosing the best mattress.
The most suitable mattress is not necessarily the costliest.
For the average consumer, with an average weight and use, he can choose a $600 mattress and it’ll last him some 10 years.
A $2000 mattress will definitely feel more luxurious and may come with better warranty policy, but it will still last him that same life span.
Even if he chooses a $3000 one, he will still have to make sure he makes the best out of it in 10 years, or less.
So, instead of the cost, you should probably focus on more your sleeping habits, the firmness you want, and the material preferences.
With those criteria in mind, try being more flexible with your budget, both up and down. There are always hot coupons on the dealer site, so make sure you hunt for that if you want to satisfy a hungry wallet.
So that’s it for our guide on how to choose a mattress. We hope you find it helpful. If you did, make sure that you tell us in the comments. Any questions or inquiries are welcomed, too!