Choosing the right mattress can be confusing at first, which is why I have put together this mattress buying guide 2016. There are lots of different types on the market, and the sales blurb about pocket springs, foam destiny, and tufting doesn’t always explain what you want to know. You want to know – how can I choose the best mattress for the perfect night’s sleep?
The good news is, this article is a complete guide to choosing the best mattress. I cover all the different types and fillings on the market. As well as how to test a mattress, what size you need, care tips and more.
What Are the Different Types of Mattress?
There are a number of different types of fillings and constructions when it comes to mattresses. They all offer a different feel, and these can be grouped into five main categories that are the most popular. These are as follows:
Mattress Buying Guide 2016: Types of Mattress
Open Spring Mattresses
Open spring mattresses, or open coil as they are called, are constructed with springs held together by a piece of wire. This type of mattress was more popular in years gone by due to being inexpensive and easy to mass produce.
The real downside is that movement transfers across the bed easily. Whenever you move your partner will feel the movement. They often have a lawyer of foam or memory foam on the top. This counteracts some of the motion issues, but is largely dependent on the quality of the mattress.
Pocket Spring Mattresses
Pocket spring mattresses were designed to deal with the movement issues highlighted with the open spring mattresses. Each spring in the mattress is individually wrapped to absorb the movement independently and not transfer a lot of the motion.
This type of mattress is typically better quality than open sprung. They range in the amount of pocket springs and can vary in feel a lot. There is a layer of memory foam on top to add additional support and provide a more comfortable surface.
Foam and Memory Foam Mattresses
Most mattresses have a layer of foam on the top. This covers all the metal springs, so you don’t have a painful piece of metal sticking through. As well as providing a more comfortable top layer of support.
Some mattresses are made of just foam. The best quality material for this is memory foam. Memory foam offers a lot of support and works to adjust to your body’s contours.
Memory foam also adjusts to your temperature and is great at keeping you cool in the summer and warm in the winter. This type of feel is not for everyone, I recommend trying a mattress with this composition before buying one.
Other Common Mattress Fillings
There are some other fillings that can all be grouped under one heading. These are man-made fillings such as tufts, polymers and synthetics. Or natural fillings will wool, cashmere and even horse hair.
With the man-made filling you have to be careful if you have allergies or a sensitive to certain chemicals. All these fillings provide a different feel and offer different support properties. You should test them carefully and research their longevity, and health benefits before making a decision.
Which Mattress Type Should You Choose?
This is something you will have to decide on yourself. I can help you understand what the different filling types are, and how different mattresses feel and what support they offer. But you will need to decide what feel gives you the best type of support, and more importantly, the best night’s sleep.
For example, if you suffer from back problems you will need a firmer mattress. Or if you sleep on your side you will need a softer mattress to allow it to work with the contours of your body.A mattress is a very important investment that is going to last you years. It’s not a decision to make lightly. Hopefully this mattress buying guide 2016 will help you find the right mattress.
What Type of Mattress Should You Use an a Divan Base?
You don’t need to treat a divan much differently than other types of bed frame. If you have a sprung base divan there is already some give, so a medium to firm mattress will be most ideal. While a standard hard top divan has no comfort at all, a firm mattress on this type of base will give a very firm feel.
This is preferred by some, especially if they have back or joint issues. But always look at the base as well as the mattress when making a decision. You may be surprised by how much impact the base makes to the overall feel.
What Type of Mattress Is Best for Children?
Having a comfortable mattress is incredibly important for a growing child. Their minds are developing and having a good night’s sleep is important for concentration and quality of memory.
This also applies to their growing bodies too. Good support helps minimize those growing pains and makes sure the child gets out of bed feeling full of energy and without any aches and pains.
Which Mattresses Are Good for Temperature Control?
Being too cold or too hot is one of the main complaints that cause interrupted sleep. Memory foam is the best type of mattress that naturally reacts to temperature and helps regulate body temperate. Although there are some other designs and technologies on some mattresses that also help.
Certain materials are more breathable. Ventilated borders and different compositions all contribute to the temperature of a mattress. Check the labels and specifications of mattresses to see how they perform.
How Thick Should a Memory Foam Mattress Be?
Memory foam mattresses are available in a wide range of thickness. The thickness is not an indication of the quality. You need to look at the density, this is a more accurate indication of the quality of the mattress.
Density is typically measured by lbs per cubic foot. The more dense the mattress is, the better support it will offer. Chose a mattress with a density rating of three and above. These are great at working to support the contours of your body, and will last a long time.
Types of Mattress and Their Support Ratings
Mattresses come in a wide range of feels. It can be argued that every mattress offers a different feel. But the three basic categories are as follows:
Soft mattresses are ideal for side sleepers. They mould around your body and take pressure off your joints and pressure points.
Medium mattresses are the all-round performers. If you are unsure what you want, a medium mattress supports any sleeping position.
Firm mattresses offer the best support if you sleep on your back or front. They also support people with back problems and other painful areas on their body.
UK Standard Mattress Sizes and Dimensions
There are six standard mattress sizes in the UK. These are as follows:
Small single – 75cm x 190cm
Single – 90cm x 190cm
Small double – 120cm x 190cm
Double – 135cm x 190cm
King-size – 150cm x 200cm
Super king-size – 180cm x 200cm
How Often Should a Mattress Be Replaced
Typically, mattresses last between 8-10 years. There are some exceptions, and most mattresses come with a life expectancy and care guide to ensure you get the most out of them.
There is no hard rule for when you should replace a mattress. You will start to notice when it’s degrading and is no longer as comfortable though. This is usually the first sign that it will need replacing.
Care and Cleaning Tips to Help Your Mattress Last Longer
Looking after your mattress will ensure you get the maximum life from it. I recommend investing in a waterproof protector sheet. This goes underneath the bed sheet and a good quality one is unnoticeable. This will keep your mattress stain free, smelling fresher, and will help keep the surface is good condition.
Some mattresses should not be turned, while others need to be turned every few weeks. This depends on the type of mattress and its filings. Always read the label carefully and turn as per the manufacturers recommendations.
This is important for keeping the feel consistent and will extend the life of the mattress. With the proper care and attention there is no reason why a mattress will not stay in top shape for years.
It’s worth paying attention to the care requirement as your health and quality of sleep depends on your mattress staying in good shape. With all the information in this mattress buying guide 2016, and a little time and patience, you will find the perfect mattress for you.
It makes a world of difference than just settling on one or making a poor decision. Good luck!