There are so many things where you can get away with going cheap but a mattress isn’t one of them. Aside from maybe an office chair, your mattress is the most used furniture you have in your house. It’s where you sleep in order to refuel and regain the energy you need to get things done the following day.
For those who want to just get straight to the recommendations, here are some of the best ones on Amazon.
Popular Memory Foam Mattresses
1. Zinus Memory Foam
2. Nectar – Currently $125 off plus 2 free memory foam pillows (expiring soon)
3. Tuft & Needle Adaptive Foam
4. Resort Sleep
Browse other popular memory foam mattresses
Popular Spring Mattresses
1. Signature Sleep Contour
2. Zinus Sleep Master Classic
Browse other popular spring mattresses
1. Olee Sleep 13 Inch Box Top Hybrid
1. Zinus Smartbase Foundation
2. Zinus Deluxe Faux Leather Upholstered Platform
3. Modern Studio Bed Frame
Browse all bed frames here.
Types of Mattresses
Although most people are only familiar with two types of mattresses, there are actually several more options than that. The outside of mattresses are quite similar; it’s what’s on the inside that makes the difference. There are mattresses that are filled with straw or cotton or feathers or water, all with the purpose of improving comfort and reducing body aches. Here are some of the more common ones used today.
The two types of mattresses that have stood the test of time due to their level of comfort are the spring mattresses and the foam mattresses.
Let’s dig deeper into each one.
Spring Mattresses (Innerspring)
Innerspring or spring coil is the most common type of mattress you’ll find. You most likely own one. These types of mattresses were invented toward the end of the 19th century. The springs are typically made of steel to help support your body. Due to the coils, you get the bouncy effect that everyone is familiar with when it comes to mattresses.
- Helps keep you cooler than most foam mattresses.
- Low cost.
- Larger selection and availability.
- It’s familiar. Chances are, you’ve used one for most of your life so you’re used to it.
- Due to being one piece and non-foldable, it has to be delivered by a truck/van or even while balanced on top of a regular car.
- Doesn’t provide as much relief to the body’s vital pressure points as foam mattresses do.
- More of a one size fits all since it doesn’t rely on body contours to produce comfort.
- The spring coils can put more pressure on certain body parts, exacerbating aches and pain rather than reduce them.
- Loses 16% of its support within the first year and can start to sag within 2-3 years.
- Needs to be flipped and rotated every now and then to help maintain the mattress.
Roughly 20% of people in the US use a memory foam mattress. This is likely due to the popularity of brands like Tempurpedic and their commercials of people jumping on the bed without spilling the glass of wine.
Foam mattresses began selling in 1996, right after NASA created a material called “Memory Foam” which was made of polyurethane, a durable plastic substance that responds to the heat and pressure to your body. With the introduction of this new material into the mattress world, it changed the sleeping experience of millions of people.
- Able to distribute the weight of your body evenly, giving you better comfort.
- since no springs are involved, when one person moves, it won’t shake the entire bed like spring mattresses do.
- Tends to last longer than spring mattresses in terms of quality level.
- Can be rolled up, sealed, and delivered in a compact box for easy transportation.
- Usually more expensive than spring mattresses of the same size and quality.
- Since there aren’t any springs, you get more of a slightly sinking feeling which makes it harder to turn from side to side. Spring mattresses help you bounce, making easier to switch sides.
- Depending on the quality of the foam mattress, there might be a smell to it. It’s recommended to let that foam mattress air out for a few days but some can still smell for a while.
- Since it relies partly on your body temperature to create the comfortable shape to support your body, it can get somewhat hot. Some may find it too uncomfortable. There are cooling gel foam mattresses that reduce this problem.
Here’s a picture that shows you why lots of people prefer a foam mattress when it comes to support.
Spring mattresses push back on however much weight is pushed down on it. This means the heavier parts of your body such as your bottom, tends to get more of the pressure. This creates pressure points and can lead to aches and pain.
Memory foam mattresses are better at conforming to your body’s curves and therefore will give you better overall support.
In terms of firmness, spring mattresses are great at shock absorption. There are 4 types of coils used: bonnell coils, continuous coils, marshall coils, and offset coils. The gauge of the coils determines its firmness.
Foam mattresses are also firm but can become supple once you lie on it.
Inner spring mattresses give you that bouncy feel while foam mattresses produce more of a cushiony feel. Then there are spring mattresses with foam toppers which gives an extra feel of comfortable along with some bounce.
As mentioned earlier, foam mattresses can become a bit warm. With low quality ones, some people end up waking up all sweaty. They are temperature sensitive so if your room is really cold, the mattress can become harder. With spring mattresses, the temperature doesn’t affect them.
As mentioned earlier though, there are cooling gel mattresses that can reduce the heating problem of memory foam mattresses or even eliminate it. There are also higher quality foam mattresses that do a much better job at preventing this problem. The ones recommended at the top of the page are great choices.
Buying the Right Mattress
Hopefully, the pros and cons will help you better decide which type of mattress is for you. There are even hybrids and all natural mattresses and so on. You also have different thicknesses to choose from.
The best thing to do when looking for the right mattress is checking out the reviews on specific mattresses to see what others have to say.
Even if you decide to choose a foam mattress, there are good ones and bad ones. The same goes for spring mattresses. Some brands are better than others. Certain brands are not worth the money.
Searching and buying online might be the way to go. Many people feel it’s best to visit a mattress store so they can test out the bed. The problem with this is one, it’s hard to really know how the bed will perform unless you sleep on it for a few days. Five or ten minutes at the store won’t really tell you too much.
The second problem is having to deal with the salespeople and back and forth bargaining. Then there are the shady practices such as a mattress company selling the same mattress to different stores and having the different stores name the mattress a different name. This way, they could say their store is the cheapest price for a particular mattress since they’re the only one who sell that brand or model name even though other stores sell the same mattress but under a different name.
I’d just skip all of that hassle and buy online. You get the benefit of reading other people’s reviews, quickly narrowing down the best choices of mattresses, whether a spring or foam mattress, and you don’t have to deal with pushy salespeople and can quickly compare prices from different websites to find the lowest prices.
The ones listed at the top of this page are some of the best rated ones.