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10 Mistakes to Avoid When Buying a Mattress

Tuesday, 22 November 2011 09:23 Published in Beyond Team Blog

This article was contributed by Christopher Fitch, the Site Editor for QMattresses, a leading Mattress Reviews, ratings and sleep-information website.

When people decide to purchase a new mattress, they often undervalue the importance of their decision and end up with a product that not only leaves them dissatisfied, but potentially in pain for several years. When you consider that most people spend more time on their mattress than they do at work, it makes sense that the mattress buying process should take time, even a lot of time.

This short piece outlines the ten mistakes to avoid when buying a mattress. Simply knowing about these mistakes can help when scouting your next mattress purchase, whether it ends up being one of the models here at Natural Mattress, or a cookie-cutter innerspring mattress on sale at one of the national chains. Pay attention to these mistakes when shopping for your next mattress and chances are good that you will not only make a better-informed buying decision, but your overall satisfaction level will be higher than someone who ignores these common mistakes altogether.

1. Not Knowing Your Sleep Type - We all sleep differently, and the odds are good that you sleep differently from your partner as well. This means you must speak your piece and not settle with the all-too-common “I’m happy with whatever you like, honey,” response. By letting your salesperson know what your individual sleep style is, he can better recommend a product that will keep both you and your partner happy. The most important part is that weight difference usually requires different mattress firmness to feel comfortable. The Dorsal mattress and Dynamic Slats systems recognize just how individualized your sleep style can be, and they can help provide different mattress core within a mattress for people who share their mattress with a partner.

2. Not Testing the Mattress… Properly - Too often in the retail world, we see people lean on the mattress with their hand, then lay down… on their back! Statistically, most people sleep on their side, so it is amazing to see so many people testing mattresses on their back. Regardless, you will not be one these sudden-back-sleepers in the showroom after reading this. Make sure to take the few minutes to test the mattress in the position you sleep in while on your mattress at home. (Need a pillow? Ask for one, even a semi-qualified salesperson will gladly offer one to help make your testing experience more realistic).

3. Not Learning More About The Mattress (detailed mattress materials, reviews, ratings, complaints, warranty) - Buying a mattress “blindly” is the leading cause of dissatisfaction among mattress owners. But too often consumers allow themselves to get “bullied” into the product of the day without getting a second opinion from others. Checking detailed mattress materials, reviews, ratings and complaints is a good idea before shelling out your money – you would be surprised at what you will learn. Also, ask for written details as some salespeople will tell you everything good you like to hear; some people may claim 100% natural latex mattress while it actually has synthetic latex in it. It’s best to know about this fickle piece of documentation before finding out the hard way that it is not what you thought it was.

4. Making Assumptions About Price and Comfort - Although the more you pay for a mattress, the higher the likelihood that you are getting better quality materials, it does not necessarily mean it will be a more-comfortable mattress for you. Some of the most expensive mattresses come with the highest dissatisfaction ratings among owners – memory foam and innerspring products alike. In many cases, price works along the same lines as expectations. That is to say, many consumers feel that if they pay more money for a mattress, they should get more comfort from a mattress. But spending a lot has nothing to do with whether that product is right for you. Don’t mistake price for comfort and take the time to get to know what the mattress is all about before you spend your money.

5. Believing that the Foundation Plays a Secondary Role To the Mattress. -A full mattress set consists of the mattress itself as well as the foundation (also known as box spring). While most consumers focus on what goes into the mattress, it is worth looking at the foundation as the invaluable second part of a full mattress set. No matter how comfortable a mattress may seem, if you do not use an appropriate, high quality foundation, the comfort characteristics could be lost on a poor foundation. In many ways, the foundation itself actually contributes more to the sleep experience.

6. Failure To Consider Alternatives - Many shoppers have a price point or product type in mind and refuse to consider alternative recommendations by the salesperson. If the salesperson fully understands your needs and preferences, chances are quite good that he or she can offer a couple of alternatives to let you see what other brands can offer. In some cases, they will cost a little more, but refusing to consider those alternatives could make for a big mistake down the road. Ask many questions, keeping your options open to suggestions and alternatives may result in improved sleep quality, so don’t rule out products or brands you never considered before.

7. Making Impulsive Decisions - It is easy to fall in love with a mattress based on price or how it feels in the showroom. Unless your mattress has burnt down and you have nowhere to sleep that night (or if a sale ends that specific day), there is no need to make a rushed decision about a mattress. Taking notes about what you liked about the mattress in question and going home to “sleep on it” before making the purchase is a good thing. You may realize the next morning that there are other deals or options you have not considered yet or that the mattress in question might not accommodate your sleep style the way your existing mattress does. Try to never buy a new mattress on the same day that you start your search.

8. Not Knowing Who You Are Buying From - The proliferation of mattress retailers has resulted in healthy competition in the industry. However, some retailers are not quite as reputable as others. Buying a bad mattress is one thing; buying it from a bad retailer is another. Before spending your money at a retailer you know little about, try researching the outfit to make sure they stand by their service promise and have been in business long enough to truly understand the industry. No matter how good a mattress might be dealing with a terrible retailer can ruin your entire mattress buying experience.

9. Not Thinking a Supportive Mattress is as Important as a Comfortable One – Too hard or too soft doesn’t provide a good night’s sleep, a good balance is that you feel comfortable and your spine is aligned straight while you sleep on side. Although the National Sleep Foundation underlines the importance of having a comfortable mattress if you want to get the right hours of sleep every night, sleeping on a supportive mattress is probably even more important. The reason is that an unsupportive mattress will not only have you tossing and turning throughout the night due to the bad sleeping posture, but it will leave you waking up with aches and pains, robbing you of the necessary deep-sleep your body needs to recover. While comfort is certainly important, a supportive mattress that allows your body to rest the way it needs is even more valuable.

10. Not Taking Care of The Mattress - While it is true that the salesperson encouraging you to add a mattress protector to your purchase is indeed an “upsell,” these protectors are essential gear for your mattress. Not only will they keep your mattress isolated from unwanted spills or body fluids (most people sweat while they sleep), it will avoid staining and thereby keep the mattress warranty valid should you ever need to make a claim. Just make sure your mattress protector will have a similar property as your mattress, such as good air circulation. Taking care of your mattress is as important as maintaining your vehicle – not only good for the warranty, but for the general performance as well. Keep that in mind.

The Importance of a Good Bed Base

Thursday, 17 November 2011 08:40 Published in Beyond Team Blog

Having the perfect mattress isn’t entirely up to the mattress itself. When investing in a quality mattress, it is important to team it with a quality base in order to get the most out of it. Choosing the right bed base will make all the difference. Now, which one to choose? Here is a guide to help you navigate the bed base options on the market.

Ensemble vs. Slats
Ensemble bases are usually sold with inner spring mattresses. They are upholstered boxes with springs inside and are usually very low to the ground. This inhibits the mattresses ability to ventilate and is known for providing the perfect environment for breeding dustmites.

Slatted bases are made from a series of flexible timber slats, usually inside a metal frame. They can be adjustable or motorised and offer superior support and ventilation for a comfortable sleep. The adjustable slats can accommodate changing lifestyles whether you are a growing child or teenager, planning to get pregnant, or they can simply adapt with you as your bodies needs change through the life of the bed.


> Flexible

The flexibility of the timber slats allows them to absorb downward pressure and help the mattress contour around your shape for a personalised, supported sleep.

> Minimises Pressure Points
Flexible slatted bases are designed to alleviate back pressure and pain that is caused by sleep systems that are too firm or too soft.

> Air Flow
The gaps between each slat and the nature of it being elevated off the floor, allows for ventilation around the mattress. This is important in maintaining a comfortable sleeping temperature.

> Eliminates Dustmites
Choosing a slat base over an ensemble base means you are eliminating a large environment that dustmites and allergens inhabited, thereby reducing adverse reactions for those who suffer allergies.

> Minimal Partner Disturbance
Flexible slatted bases are designed with two sets of slats and a central support bar, the advantage of this is when two people share the bed, they are not sharing the same slats, they have their own set, and movements on one side will not carry through to the other side. This results in minimal partner disturbance through the night, and differs to many ensemble style bases where the springs or coils are connected and movements can reverberate through.


> Customisable

Adjustable slats have the added benefit of rigidity adjusters which allow you to vary the tension over your back area independently of your partner. This feature is great when each partner has different preferences for firm or soft, or different requirements due to varying body weights.

> Changing Lifestyles
The ability to adjust the tension of the slats makes these perfect for those with changing lifestyles. Whether it is for a woman who is planning to get pregnant, or there is simply the chance that through the course of owning the bed your weight may alter (if you plan on having the bed for 8-10 years this is a likely scenario for many) the slats can adjust to such changes in weight, height and required support.  Adjustable support is also idea for growing children or teens, a 12 year old will require very different support when they are 17, although it is often the case that they will have the same bed throughout this period.


> Head & Feet Elevation
Motorised slats allow you to raise and lower you head and feet using a remote control. These bases are great for people who like to relax in bed while reading and watching TV in a comfortable position. They are also a great option for people who have health concerns and need to be elevated when sleeping or have to spend extended periods of time in bed.  Motorised beds have largely been viewed as medical aids, the lifestyle and physical benefits they can bring to people of all ages means people are starting to view then in a new light.

Lifestyle Benefits: adjust the head or feet or both for comfortable reading in bed, working in bed, watching TV or movies and so on.

Health Benefits: sleeping with your head and feet raised is known to assist with circulation, reduce cramping (via improved circulation), and in some cases reduce snoring by opening up the nasal passage.  A motorised bed is also extremely ideal if you are planning parenthood, throughout the pregnancy phase you may adjust the bed to your comfort, and during the nursing stage you can raise and lower the bed with ease.


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