Mattress Buying Basics

Mattress Buying Basics-

Some of you have had experience out there mattress buying, you have done it before, you know what you like and are comfortable with the whole process.  For those of you who are not well versed at retail mattress buying and shopping, We want to provide you with some basic tips.

The ‘Feel’-

Most importantly, mattress buying is pretty personal, only you know what you like in the way that it ‘feels’, so the best way to shop for a mattress in in person.  This doesn’t mean you might not end up buying online, but when shopping for a mattress, you need to do it in person.  It is very rare that you can get the feeling of a mattress simply by reading what someone else has written.

You need to touch it, feel it and lay down on it to truly make your decision.  If you are a couple, then you should both lie down on any mattress you are considering.  Is there enough room, are you both comfortable with the amount of support it gives, is it long enough?  Mattress buying can be made very difficult in determining thees things if you are not there in person.

Mattress Type-

Mattress buying also means you should have a basic idea of the types available.  The two most common are:

  • Innerspring mattresses
  • Foam mattresses

Innerspring systems:

pocketed innerspring coil mattress sample

example of a pocketed Innerspring System

The most common type, they give their support with metal coils.  There are different types of coils and different gauges.  The gauge designates the thickness of the wire, and the thickness of the wire will influence the firmness of the mattress.  What is odd is that thicker gauges have lower numbers.  Wire with a gauge of 12 will be more firm than 14 gauge wire.  Heavier gauge equals a firmer mattress, a lighter gauge will yield a springier one.

Foam mattresses:

memory foam mattress density

Memory Foam Offers Density Comfort

Filled with a combination of natural fibers and synthetics. As with innersprings, you need to lay on the foam mattresses to determine the best one for you.  Foam mattresses have ‘Density’, which is generally expressed in pounds per cubic foot (pcf).  Density is an important property of foam and affects durability and support.  A higher density, better quality foam will retain it’s support and durability properties longer and more effectively.

Mattress Size-

Our last bit of advice while mattress buying is to buy the correct mattress size.  A common mistake made is getting one that is too small.  Once again, a very valid reason why you need to do your shopping in person.  Some criteria to follow are:

  • Your new mattress should be at least 6 inches longer than the tallest sleeper, when possible.
  • As to width, you and your partner should be able to lie on your backs, hands behind your heads, elbows out and not be touching each other.
  • Additionally, a rule of thumb to go by when placing a bed and mattress in a room is to have at least 22 inches of clearance on the sides of the mattress and nearby furniture.

Other Mattress Buying Considerations-

  • ‘Green’ and Eco-Friendly manufacturing practices
  • Whether to buy online- say at or a similar site
  • ‘Discount’ Mattress warehouses- Sleep Country, Sleep Train, etc.

We hope this will give you some mattress buying basics to think about and understand when you go out there shopping for a new mattress.  You will find more comprehensive information about mattress traits and qualities as we grow our site, please keep checking back!  Have fun and Sweet Dreams-