Mattress Shopping 101

Stuart Simpson

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Is it time for a new bed? Is your mattress flat? Do you lie in a wallowed out pit in the middle? I know, because I did and I needed a new mattress. I went shopping and want to give you the scoop on what I found at various mattress stores.

Have you seen the ads about foam beds? They pretty much tout the fact that you are sleeping on metal springs your whole life. Which that is true, and what an innovation it was at the time. The foam beds are neat. I looked at one at the mattress store. It does just like they say on TV. The first thing that scared me off was the price. Then my friend told me they tried one. Remember; get a mattress from someone who will let you return it after you sleep on it. Anyway, they got a foam mattress. He said after you lay on it, it conforms to your body. Then, he couldn’t get out of the “mold" to roll over. He sent it back and got a regular bed.

I started looking at the sleep number beds. They are air beds with individual number settings for each person. Appears that people would get deeper sleep on these beds by allowing their own firmness setting. Your side could be softer than your spouse’s side. This looked like a great potential for a bed. In fact, my in-laws bought one and threw away their mattress. They love it. They said it reduced their back pain and they got better sleep. Did I buy one? No, and the main reason was price. I’m a cheapo.

So I went to a regular mattress store. The one with the foam bed. I started with those and looked my way down. They have inner spring mattresses for the same price as a foam bed. Still too much. So as I stepped down in price, I noticed that basically, the mattresses were the same, they just reduced the amount and quality of layering components on the top surface. Some had fewer springs, so I had to watch and make sure the spring count was still as high as possible.

So what did I finally decide on? A Simmon’s Beautyrest® World Class® Exceptionale™ Two Story® Coil on Coil Beauty Rest. It was cheaper than my original 10 year old Serta and I didn’t have to flip it. And it’s enormously thick. I had to rebuild the bed to accommodate the thick mattress. The thickness came into play with all the layers of foam. In fact, it had a layer of the memory foam that the solid foam beds are made of.

You’ll have to decide which bed is right for you. I needed a high quality bed for way under $1000 and I found it. Be sure you get the entire set, as the box springs are made to fit and support the newer, heavier mattresses.

Stuart Simpson


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