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First time mattress/bed buyer. Currently sleeping on a bad mattress. Help? 16 May 2016 20:14 #1

  • Kreiger
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Hey all.

A little background if I may.

As the post stated, I'm coming from a history of horrible sleeping arrangements, starting from a period of homelessness (where concrete or steel was bed) and up through to my current "mattress" I bought in 2010 which is an innerspring futon mattress. (yeah, I know) On a self-built plywood base that closely resembles a very low table.

The point of that is that I don't KNOW what kind of mattress I like as far as soft or medium or firm. I read the tutorial and i've looked at the advice given here, but i'm literally coming from a blank slate as far as what I prefer in a mattress since I've never had the luxury of being able to choose before.

Some nights I'm fine with my horrid mattress, and other mornings I wake up and my back is sore, my hips are sore, and I just don't feel rested.

I'm a combination sleeper, I usually fall asleep easiest on my side and end up waking up in any position.

I'm 5'8 and 230lbs (and going down!)

I live in Arizona, so I went to visit the Tuft and Needle showroom, and while the beds were very nice, it felt too firm. Brooklyn Bedding (also in phoenix) felt much better on medium and soft, but, again, I don't know what "good" is.

I feel like a guy who's so used to eating hot dogs that I don't know a good steak when I eat one, if that makes any sense.

I THINK I like softer mattresses based on a couch I had at the time which I preferred to my bed, but, again. I don't really know.

Help?

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First time mattress/bed buyer. Currently sleeping on a bad mattress. Help? 16 May 2016 21:05 #2

  • phoenix
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Hi Kreiger,

The point of that is that I don't KNOW what kind of mattress I like as far as soft or medium or firm. I read the tutorial and i've looked at the advice given here, but i'm literally coming from a blank slate as far as what I prefer in a mattress since I've never had the luxury of being able to choose before.


While I can certainly help with "how" to choose ... It'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. There are just 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", firmness, or PPP (Posture and alignment, Pressure relief, and your own Personal preferences) or how a mattress will "feel" to you or compare to another mattress based on specs (either yours or a mattress), sleeping positions, health conditions, or "theory at a distance" that can possibly be more reliable 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 ).

It's good to see you've read the mattress shopping tutorial which includes all the basic information, steps, and guidelines that you will need to make the best possible choice but 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", firmness, and PPP 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.

Assuming that the materials in a mattress you are considering are durable enough for your body type and meet the quality/durability guidelines here relative to your weight range ... the choice between different types and combinations of materials and components or different types of mattresses are more of a preference and a budget choice than a "better/worse" choice (see this article ). The best way to know which type of materials or which type of mattresses you tend to prefer in general terms will be based on your own testing and personal experience because different people can have very different preferences.

I live in Arizona


The better options or possibilities I'm aware of in the Phoenix area (subject to making sure that any mattress you are considering meets the quality/value guidelines I linked earlier in this reply) are listed in post #4 here .

I or some of the more knowledgeable members of the site can 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, 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 (including me) would have the same criteria or circumstances or would make the same choice.

In its simplest form choosing the "best possible" mattress for any particular person really comes down to FIRST finding a few knowledgeable and transparent retailers and/or manufacturers (either locally or online) that sell the types of mattresses that you are most interested in that are in a budget range you are comfortable with and that you have confirmed will provide you with the all the information you need about the materials and components inside the mattresses they sell so you will be able to make informed choices and meaningful comparisons between mattresses and then ...

1. Careful testing (hopefully using the testing guidelines in the tutorial) to make sure that a mattress is a good match for you in terms of "comfort", firmness, and PPP ... and/or that you are comfortable with the options you have available to return, exchange, or "fine tune" the mattress and any costs involved if you can't test a mattress in person or aren't confident that your mattress is a suitable choice.

2. Checking to make sure that there are no lower quality materials or weak links in a mattress you are considering relative to your weight range that could compromise the durability and useful life of the mattress.

3. Comparing your finalists for "value" based on #1 and #2 and all the other parts of your personal value equation that are most important to you.

Phoenix
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First time mattress/bed buyer. Currently sleeping on a bad mattress. Help? 16 May 2016 21:21 #3

  • Kreiger
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Phoenix,


I really appreciate the prompt response.

I was not at all asking for you, or anybody else to pick a mattress for me, haha. I read the guide, and I know how down that road lies failure and discomfort. I was merely trying to highlight the fact that I don't know what I like now, and because i'm so unused to a proper mattress, that it is difficult for me to judge. A clarifying example: I had a computer chair for many years and it finally gave up the ghost. When I bought a new one after much research, I found that the new chair felt crooked. It turned out that my previous chair's padding had worn down unevenly over time, so a "real" chair felt like it was crooked since I had more support on one side than I was used to. It took a little while and a chiropractor to make me realize it was my back, haha.

I experience the same issue with beds. I lay down in a mattress to test it, and I feel out of alignment because I'm used to the lumps and worn down nature of the crap i'm sleeping on now, so every bed I lay on feels "off".

I think I'll likely end up getting the medium Brooklyn Bedding since it WAS comfy, I just feel bad getting it knowing I might return it for the soft one, but I worry about the soft one being too soft.. haha.

Again, i'm not asking you to pick a mattress for me, I understand the limitations there, I guess i'm just using this as a soundboard, and for other people who've been in similar situations to give insight, like you do for everybody on here.

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First time mattress/bed buyer. Currently sleeping on a bad mattress. Help? 16 May 2016 21:29 #4

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Hi Kreiger,

I experience the same issue with beds. I lay down in a mattress to test it, and I feel out of alignment because I'm used to the lumps and worn down nature of the crap i'm sleeping on now, so every bed I lay on feels "off".

I think I'll likely end up getting the medium Brooklyn Bedding since it WAS comfy, I just feel bad getting it knowing I might return it for the soft one, but I worry about the soft one being too soft.. haha.


A knowledgeable and experienced manufacturer or retailer will generally be able to give you some good guidance or suggestions about which of their mattresses are more likely to be a good "match" for you in terms of firmness and PPP but in your weight range I would lean towards a medium or firmer rather than the soft.

Phoenix
Researching for a mattress?... Be sure to read The Mattress Shopping Tutorial.
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First time mattress/bed buyer. Currently sleeping on a bad mattress. Help? 16 May 2016 21:46 #5

  • Kreiger
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Part of what you mentioned resonated very well with me.

You pointed out that a lot of manufacturers try to say there's a standard of firmness that mattresses can be fit into, when in reality everything is entirely subjective.

Example: Tuft and Needle's firm is more of sleeping on a slab-type firmness, and BB has the quilt top, so it feels softer even if the actual give and support of the underlying latex is the same.

I'll do some more research and reading.

I really appreciate your input and this site in general. Major kudos.

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First time mattress/bed buyer. Currently sleeping on a bad mattress. Help? 16 May 2016 22:24 #6

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Hi Kreiger,

You certainly have some great options available to you in your area and I'm looking forward to finding out what you end up deciding ... and of course to any other comments or questions you may have along the way.

Phoenix
Researching for a mattress?... Be sure to read The Mattress Shopping Tutorial.
Click here for TMU Discount Codes if purchasing from Our Trusted Members.
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