Mattress buying guide


Purchasing a mattress is a large investment. You're not just buying the support you need for a good night's sleep; you're buying the support you need for2,500 nights worth of good sleep. This is why it's best to be prepared and informed as you approach the purchase of your newest and most important addition to your bedroom. What do you need to look for if this is your first time buying a mattress? How do you know if the mattress you have needs replacing?

How do you feel as you sleep on your current mattress?

  • Do you wake up with aches and pains?
  • Do you feel more tired than when you went to sleep?
  • Do you prefer to sleep on the couch?

How long have you had your mattress?

  • The average lifespan of a mattress is 5-7 years

Is your mattress a comfortable size?

  • Can you stretch out and fully relax?
  • If you have a sleeping partner are you often disrupting each other's sleep because you don't have enough room?

Is your mattress showing signs of wear?

  • Does your mattress have rips or tears?
  • Is the interior exposed?
  • Are there noticeable dips, sags, or lumps in your mattress?

Memory Foam Mattresses

Memory foam products have become very popular recently, but what makes the best memory foam mattress?

Memory foam is not firm enough to adequately support the body on its own. A 14 in. memory foam mattress made entirely of memory foam may seem like the most ideal type of mattress, but layers of other materials are crucial for the most comfortable night's sleep.

A 12 in. memory foam mattress, for example, might only have about two to three inches of memory foam in it. The other layers may consist of other types of foam or innersprings.

The top layer (known as the comfort layer) of memory foam conforms to your body, while the layers that make up the core of the mattress provide support. These layers together produce the type of amazing sleep that memory foam mattresses are known for.


Gel Memory Foam Mattresses

Through your research you may have found memory foam mattress reviews that complain about how hot memory foam products become. Memory foam is known for its ability to retain heat, which is the quality that allows it to sink and adjust to your body. If you are concerned about being too warm on your 6 in. memory foam mattress, you might want to look further into memory foam mattresses that include an extra gel layer. The gel material will keep you from feeling too overheated so you can rest comfortably and get the rest you need.


Innerspring Mattresses

Innerspring mattresses are the most common and popular type of mattress on the market, and have been since the early 1900s. Innerspring mattresses are a series of metal coils strung onto a metal wire and held in place by a wooden frame. They are about 12" thick, and feature a substantial cushioning layer of foam that softens the firm consistency of the innerspring mattresses' support. The biggest benefit of a support core made up of innersprings is the versatility they can add to a mattress. Springs can be used in mattresses on either end of the firmness spectrum, and often offer more affordable mattress options. Although many innerspring mattresses advertise the amount of coils inside the mattress don't immediately be impressed by a 10 in. memory foam mattresswith a large amount of coils inside. Take a closer look at the coil gauge to see if the mattress will offer the support you need. The coil gauge tells you how thick the coils are. A low gauge means a thick and heavy wire, and a more supportive mattress.


Pocket Spring Mattresses

Pocketed springs are designed to give that extra solid sense of support with reliable motion transfer. Standard coil systems contain springs that are usually wired together, but the springs in a pocket spring mattress are individually wrapped (or encased) in fabric, which creates separate springs. This gives each pocketed spring the autonomy to move around independently, respond quickly to any movement, and mold itself to the contours of your body. Pocket spring mattresses are the most ideal spring mattresses for couples; the individually wrapped coils will keep your partner from waking you up if they toss and turn at night. You may also hear pocket springs referred to as wrapped coils, encased coils, encased springs, or Marshall coils.


Finding the Right Size

Finding the best mattress for you can take a lot of research. There are many factors to consider like the materials your mattress is made of, and how firm your mattress is. Many people don't put much thought into the mattress size they're buying, but that is still a very important factor.


A Twin mattress should be called a single, since it's not made for two of anything. It's the smallest bedding size, other than a crib-sized mattress. The standard measurements of a twin memory foam mattress are around 38 inches wide by 75 inches tall. Because of their length, they usually aren't the best size for some adults, especially men. If you have a studio, a Twin XL could possibly be a nice fit, since it's both space saving and extended by a few more inches. This bed alternative is popular because it's an affordable college dorm mattress.


The Full (sometimes called Double), size mattress is 53 inches wide, which will leave couples only 27 inches of personal space. Both twin and full sizes are approximately 75 inches long, which still might not be tall enough for some adults.

A full size memory foam mattress is only ideal for a single sleeper, and only if the person is under 5 feet tall. This bedding option is usually a good mattress for teenagers to sleep on and more affordable. Parents have even started purchasing full size mattresses for their younger children, too.


Queen size mattress measurements are typically around 60 inches wide by 80 inches long. The queen size is one of the most popular and requested mattress sizes because it's affordable and it has more space for couples (around 30 inches per partner). Queen size memory foam mattresses can also be used for single sleepers who like to roam around at night. They also fit any guest room nicely.


King size mattresses tend to be close to 76 inches wide by 80 inches long, which is 18 inches wider than a queen size mattress. This bed size gives couples as much personal space as they need and is like having two twin beds pushed together.

There are many advantages to owning a king-sized memory foam mattress, like the freedom to wiggle around and stretch as you please. Before you go off and decide to add one to your cart, keep in mind that its larger size can be (occasionally) tricky to manage. King-sized beds are known for being a challenge to move around bedrooms and sometimes are too bulky to maneuver through angled corridors, doors and stairwells. It's best to check and see what the dimensions of your bedroom (and doorways) are first before you click on "purchase."

Product NameComfort LayerSupport LayerMattress HeightFirmness 10 very firm, 1 is least firmTemperature Control Rating 10 is high, 1 is low
Classic Memory Foam Mattresses Memory Foam 1.5" and quilted cotton blend cover Foam Base6.5 inches 8 inches 6 6
Luxury Memory Foam Mattresses Memory Foam 2" Foam Base6 inches 8 inches 8 6
Zen Bedrooms Dorm Mattress Memory Foam 1" Foam Base5 inches 6 inches 8 6
Cool Gel Memory Foam Mattress Gel Memory Foam 2" Foam Base6 inches 8 inches 8 9
Classic Inner Spring Mattress Foam Layer Springs 12 inches 7 7
Comfort Inner Spring Mattress Memory Foam Springs 12 inches 8 7
Kalli Plush Spine Mattress 1" gel visco, 2" convoluted foam layer and quilted polyester fiber cover Pocket Springs 15 inches 5 7
Kalli Pillow Spine Top Mattress Kalli Pillow Spine Top Mattress Pocket Springs 15 inches 6 8