6 tips for buying the best mattress

Getting a good night’s sleep is often easier said than done, but a good mattress will help you get six to eight hours of quality snooze time. Stop daydreaming about that elusive shut-eye, and heed the advice of our highly rated service providers as to why buying the best mattress matters.

1. Don’t fret the price

More costly doesn’t necessarily mean a better night’s sleep. “If the least expensive [mattress] is the most comfortable, then that’s the best bed for you,” says David Phillips, marketing manager of highly rated The Original Mattress Factory in Cleveland. Their popular orthopedic queen-size mattress and box spring sells for $699. May says his most popular queen-sized set, the Heavenly Comfort with memory foam, costs just under $2,000.

2. Listen to your body

Replace a mattress when it starts impeding your sleep, experts say. “A lot of places are going to give you a specific deadline, but the fact is your body will tell you when it needs something different,” says Bobby Cleveland, sales executive at highly rated Verlo Mattress Factory in Greenfield, Wis. “Most people keep a mattress between six and 15 years.”

3. Lay down

“It’s all about your personal preferences, in order to determine what’s right,” says Larry May, owner of highly rated May & Company, a family-owned mattress business in Indianapolis. “It’s whatever feels good.” May suggests lying down for at least 10 minutes to gauge your comfort level. Also, ask if they have a return or exchange policy.

4. Maintain quality zzz’s

Regardless of the type of mattress, upkeep is important. Invest in a decent mattress protector and don’t forget to rotate it every 60 days. If you have a two-sided mattress, give it a flip at the same time to increase its longevity.

5. Frame it right

A sturdy frame is necessary to hold up the bed, which includes a center support. “It prevents the dip in the middle,” says Phillips. “Make sure there’s a rail going across the middle and a leg going down to the floor — not just slats across the frame.”

6. Soften up a bit

The biggest mistake is buying a mattress that’s too hard, Cleveland says. “A lot of people think a firmer mattress is more supportive, but nothing is further from the truth,” he says. “A softer mattress is going to be better — it cushions and supports your hips, shoulders and back.”


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Fox Mattress customer Tammy Garrow tests a mattress. Highly rated providers suggest trying mattresses in the position you sleep. (Photo by David Massey)
Fox Mattress customer Tammy Garrow tests a mattress. Highly rated providers suggest trying mattresses in the position you sleep. (Photo by David Massey)

Bed shoppers rave about personal service, first-hand knowledge and increased value when they shop at companies that manufacture their own mattresses

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