How to Choose a Mattress

We spend about third of our lives in bed, but how much time did you spend picking your last mattress? These tips from Domestic CEO will help you find the right mattress for your needs, and make sure you get the best quality sleep.

Amanda Thomas
5-minute read
Episode #143

Look For Return Policies

Before you set foot in a mattress store, do a little research to find out about its return policy. Some stores let you sleep on a bed for up to 30 days before returning it, while others have a no-returns policy.

A no-returns policy doesn’t need to be a deal breaker in your decision to shop at a specific store, but it does mean you need to put more time into your decision before buying from that place. Mattresses aren’t cheap, so you want to make sure that you really love one - especially if you can’t return it.

Take a Nap in the Store

Even if you aren't able to travel and try out different beds, spend a decent amount of time in the mattress store trying out the products. You don’t need to literally take a nap in the shop, but no one would judge you if you did!

Professionals at mattress stores actually encourage you to spend at least 15-20 minutes in your sleeping position on any mattress you think you want to buy - and if you fall asleep for a few minutes, that’s totally ok. Mattress stores want to make sure that you get the right style for you, so most sales people are trained to guide you to some good options, then leave you alone to spend some quality time lying down.

A Little Trick: “That’s Too Much!”

Have you watched the show "The Price Is Right?" There’s a game on that where players are shown an item, then a series of increasing prices. When the price they see is higher than they think the item is worth, they are supposed to yell out, “That’s too much!” If it is the first price higher than the actual price of the item, they win.

Why am I telling you this? Because it is very similar to a little trick I learned when shopping for a coil mattress years ago. You are going to do this in reverse though, starting with the most expensive mattress, then going down in price until you say, “That’s too much!” Only this time, you are going to be judging the “too much” based on the difference in comfort.

The first step is to determine what level of firmness you need. Mattresses will be labeled by firmness, so start on some of the fancier (ie, more expensive) options. Once you have determined how firm you like it, ask the sales person to show you the next price point down in that firmness level. Continue to go down in price until you notice a difference in firmness that you don’t think you can live with.

When I did this, I went from thinking I needed a $2500 mattress to finding a great $450 one. By using this method, I was able to figure out where my personal comfort level breaking point was, and I got an economical mattress that continues to get rave reviews from people who stay in our guest room.

There are enough things in life to keep us awake at night, but the wrong mattress shouldn’t be one of them. Research has shown that a lack of sleep can slow your thinking, kill your sex drive, lead to serious diseases, make you forgetful, and more. Since having the right mattress plays a serious role in getting a good night’s sleep, when buying a mattress, think of it as an investment in yourself, rather than just getting another piece of furniture. It may cost a little more up front, but that’s better than paying the price night after night for years.

Until next time, I’m the Domestic CEO, helping you love your home. Connect with me on Twitter, Facebook, or Pinterest!

Image of stack of mattresses courtesy of Shutterstock.