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Help paring down mattress options 20 Nov 2015 14:02 #1

  • Panda
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Broad-shouldered side-sleeper here, ~150 lbs, checking in from the DC area (on the Maryland side).. I'm currently using an ancient mattress atop an equally ancient box spring and Harvard frame. I've read through some of the comprehensive information available here, but admit it has washed over me rather than sunk in. What I've gleaned so far is that the DC area is underserved by quality mattress purveyors, and that all-in-one options might not be best for me.

I have some joint pain, but don't like a mattress that's too soft.. I've slept on Tempurpedic a few times, and recall enjoying it. The mattress buying guide is very thorough, but I'd greatly appreciate any help narrowing things down. Thank you!

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Help paring down mattress options 20 Nov 2015 14:17 #2

Phoenix will be able to give you a lot more details and point you to great quality past info!

I have started trying bed-in-a-box solutions and have really found them to be a great value, but the downside is you don't get to try a large variety of brands all at once. There is a list of great ones, but my top picks so far have been Tuft & Needle, Nest Love Bed, and Brooklyn Bedding Best Mattress Ever.

Which bed will work best for you is (unfortunately) completely your pick! Believe me, I have spent hours and hours reading endless marketing copy on so many brands, but it all comes down to how well you enjoy a mattress after a good number of weeks of real life use. Near all of the bed-in-a-box companies offer a really generous trial period that can help, as long as you don't mind being in "mattress limbo" for a while.

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Help paring down mattress options 20 Nov 2015 14:59 #3

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Take a look at the Helix Sleep mattress. There is a personal questionnaire to help you build a mattress fit for your body.
That may be helpful.

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Help paring down mattress options 20 Nov 2015 16:14 #4

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Hi Panda,

Welcome to the Mattress Forum! :)

Broad-shouldered side-sleeper here, ~150 lbs, checking in from the DC area (on the Maryland side).. I'm currently using an ancient mattress atop an equally ancient box spring and Harvard frame. I've read through some of the comprehensive information available here, but admit it has washed over me rather than sunk in. What I've gleaned so far is that the DC area is underserved by quality mattress purveyors, and that all-in-one options might not be best for me.

I have some joint pain, but don't like a mattress that's too soft.. I've slept on Tempurpedic a few times, and recall enjoying it. The mattress buying guide is very thorough, but I'd greatly appreciate any help narrowing things down. Thank you!


It sounds like you may have already read it but just in case ... the first place I would start your research is the mattress shopping tutorial here which includes all the basic information, steps, and guidelines you will need to make the best possible choice ... and perhaps more importantly know how and why to avoid the worst ones.

Two of the most important links in the tutorial that I would especially make sure you've read are post #2 here which has more about the different ways to choose a suitable mattress (either locally or online) that is the best "match" for you in terms of "comfort" and PPP (Posture and alignment, Pressure relief, and Personal preferences) that can help you assess and minimize the risks of making a choice that doesn't turn out as well as you hoped for and post #13 here which has more about the most important parts of the "value" of a mattress purchase which can help you make more meaningful quality/value comparisons between mattresses in terms of suitability (how well you will sleep), durability (how long you will sleep well), and the overall value of a mattress compared to your other finalists (based on all the parts of your personal value equation that are most important to you).

You may also have seen this already based on your comments but the better options or possibilities I'm aware of in and around the Washington, DC/Northern Virginia areas (subject to making sure that any mattress you are considering meets the quality/value guidelines I linked) are listed in post #2 here .

If you are also considering online options then the tutorial also includes a link to several lists of the better online options I'm aware of (in the optional online step) that include many different types of mattress in a wide range of budgets.

One of the online links is to a list of the simplified choice mattresses you were mentioning and any of these may turn out to be a "great" match, a "good" match, or an "OK" match for you in terms of PPP and some may turn out to be unsuitable for you to sleep on but for those that aren't a "good enough" match they generally have a great return/refund policy as well so that you can test them in your bedroom instead of a showroom with little risk. Of course as Tetril mentioned with online choices you won't be able to test a number of mattresses side by side to see which of them work best for you or that you prefer so it's generally a good idea to spend some time testing mattresses locally to get a better sense of which types of materials or which types of mattresses you tend to prefer in general.

There is also more about the pros and cons of an online purchase vs a local purchase in post #2 here and this topic . This is something that each person will need to decide for themselves because there are pros and cons to both of them that will depend on the person, their circumstances, and on the area that they live.

Unfortunately t's not possible to make specific suggestions or recommendations for either a mattress, manufacturers/retailers, or combinations of materials or components because the first "rule" of mattress shopping is to always remember that you are the only one that can feel what you feel on a mattress and there are too many unknowns, variables, and personal preferences involved that are unique to each person to use a formula or for anyone to be able to predict or make a specific suggestion or recommendation about which mattress or combination of materials and components or which type of mattress would be the best "match" for you in terms of "comfort" or PPP or how a mattress will "feel" to you or compare to another mattress based on specs (either yours or a mattress) or "theory at a distance" that can possibly be more accurate than your own careful testing (hopefully using the testing guidelines in step 4 of the tutorial)or your own personal sleeping experience (see mattress firmness/comfort levels in post #2 here ).

While your own careful testing or personal experience is the most reliable way to know whether any mattress is a good "match" for you in terms of comfort and PPP or how closely it "matches" or "approximates" another mattress ... when you can't test a mattress in person then the most reliable source of guidance is always a more detailed phone conversation with a knowledgeable and experienced retailer or manufacturer that has your best interests at heart and who can help "talk you through" the specifics of their mattresses and the properties and "feel" of the materials they are using (fast or slow response, resilience, firmness etc) and the options they have available that may be the best "match" for you based on the information you provide them, any local testing you have done or mattresses you have slept on and liked or other mattresses you are considering that they are familiar with, and the "averages" of other customers that are similar to you. They will know more about "matching" their specific mattress designs and firmness levels to different body types, sleeping positions, and preferences (or to other mattresses that they are familiar with) than anyone else.

I or some of the more knowledgeable members of the site can certainly help you to narrow down your options, help you focus on better quality/value choices that are available to you either locally or online, help you identify any lower quality materials or weak links in a mattress relative to your weight that you may be considering, act as a fact check, answer many of the specific questions you may have along the way that don't involve what you will "feel" on a mattress, and help with "how" to choose but only you can decide which specific mattress, manufacturer, or combination of materials is "best for you" regardless of the name of the manufacturer on the label or whether anyone else would have the same criteria or circumstances or would make the same choice.

Phoenix
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Help paring down mattress options 20 Nov 2015 16:37 #5

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Thanks, everyone! I'll definitely take a look through those links, Phoenix, and I appreciate you taking the time.

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