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Simplified Choice Mattresses aka Disruptors, Bed In A Box, One Choice Fits All, Universal Comfort, Millennial Mattresses

Phoenix created the topic: Simplified Choice Mattresses aka Disruptors, Bed In A Box, One Choice Fits All,

14 Jun 2015 12:08

Hello to all the members of The Mattress Underground,

This is the first of three posts that are all about the new "breed" or "category" of mattresses that has emerged in the last few years and has grown substantially in the last 6 months.

Part 1 of 3 (this post): includes some of the history of this new "category" of mattresses and some general comments about the category itself.

Part 2 has a brief description and comments about each of the individual mattresses in this category and a table with the highlights of each mattress for comparison.

Part 3 will include some of my thoughts about where this new category of mattresses (and to some degree the industry) may be headed.

PART 1:

There has been a whole new group or "breed" of mattress companies that have appeared online in the last few years with many of them appearing in the last few months because of the success of companies such as Saatva, Casper, and Tuft & Needle and who together are likely to have close to to 200 million in sales this year.

Companies that specialize in online sales in the mattress industry are nothing new of course and online mattresses have been fairly widely available for over 15 years, but they are still only about 10 - 15% of the industry (depending on who you talk with because nobody knows for certain). As a subgroup of online sales ... this new group is still less than 1% of the industry sales totals but they are growing quickly and are beginning to catch the attention of the industry and consumers in a way that belies their relatively small size.

This new group of companies have been called by many different names including "Disruptors", "One Choice Fits All" mattresses, "Universal Comfort" mattresses, Millennial mattresses, "Bed In A Box" mattresses, and "Simplified Choice" mattresses (which is what I have been calling them most recently) and there are others as well (including one of my favorites which is "Counterculture" mattresses). They are also becoming more and more diverse but as a group they share a number of things in common ...

- They are generally sold for between $600 and $1000 which is a "sweet spot" in the industry and are designed to attract consumers that are in a median budget range and may not have the budget for more premium mattresses.

- They are targeted towards consumers that are comfortable ordering online and the segment is being driven by Millenials who have grown up online and are more comfortable ordering a mattress online than "older" generations.

- They are heavily focused on good customer service and on managing their online presence and reviews (for better or for worse).

- They are heavily focused on marketing and on marketing strategies such as ads that look like news articles or interviews, social media, google adwords, review sites, referral systems, and other newer forms of marketing and advertising and in some cases have invested heavily in their marketing budget.

- They usually have "free" shipping although free shipping is built in to the cost of a mattress.

- They all have a generous trial period and a return/refund policy that is usually free (including return shipping) or in some cases involves a nominal cost (under $100) that lowers the risk of an online purchase so consumers can test a mattress in their bedroom instead of a showroom.

- They all sell a single mattress that have between 1 and 3 firmness choices (most have only one firmness choice) that has made the process of choosing and ordering a mattress much simpler for those that don't have the time or the inclination to test mattresses locally and find the "best mattress" for their own specific needs and preferences.

- They generally claim that they are "factory direct" and that they are cutting out the middle man in the industry which they say is why they have such great value. In reality though ... most of them (with a few notable exceptions) are actually resellers and don't own their own factory and their mattresses are made by foam fabricators or manufacturers that make their mattresses with the resellers name on the mattress. While to their credit many of them have certainly streamlined the supply chain so there are cost savings involved ... most of them are not truly "factory direct" and some of them make claims about industry or retailer profits in the range of 500% - 1000% as part of their story to validate their "value" which is nonsensical. The average profit margin in the industry averages less than 50% (which means that the selling price is about double the price that is paid by a retailer). This "story" is a significant part of what is driving their sales because consumers are so dissatisfied with the industry in general that they are predisposed to believe that these numbers and other claims that are made on some of their websites are more accurate than they really are.

- Many of these companies also claim that their mattresses are "universally comfortable" but these claims are also exaggerated because if there was such a thing as a single mattress that was universally comfortable then there would only be a few mattresses needed in the industry. The reality is that they are targeted to the part of the bell curve that is attractive or suitable for the largest percentage of people (which is in the medium to medium firm range) Those companies with multiple firmness choices will also cover a larger part of the bell curve than single firmness choices. You will generally find that any one of these mattresses mattresses will be the "best" match (in their budget range) for a relatively small percentage of the population, a "good" match for a larger percentage, and an "OK" match for a larger percentage yet. While the only reliable way to know which group you fit in will be based on your actual sleeping experience when you receive the mattress ... for those where the mattress isn't a "good enough" match (either too firm, too soft, or where you experience "symptoms" when you sleep on the mattress) then they all have a great return policy that lets you start all over again with choosing another mattress with little risk outside of the time you spent trying the mattress or returning it.

- Most of them are foam mattresses of various types (latex foam, memory foam, polyfoam) although there are a few that are innerspring mattresses as well.

- Most of them are shipped compressed to save shipping costs but a few of them (mostly the innerspring versions) are also shipped through common carrier and aren't compressed for shipping.

At first there was only a few online companies that sold mattresses in this category (Saatva was first in October 2011, Tuft & Needle was next in December 2013, Casper was next in April 2014, and the rest have followed this year (2015).

Since there were were only a few companies at first (when there was only Saatva, Tuft & Needle, and Casper) and since Saatva was an innerspring mattress with 3 firmness choices which was easy to differentiate from the other two "foam" mattresses in the group (which were Tuft & Needle and Casper) and since both of the foam mattresses had a single firmness choice the group at that time really did represent "simplified choices".

In 2015 though ... primarily because of the success of the original three companies ... many new startups began to appear and the category began to rapidly diversify until there is now over a dozen different companies in the category and from representing a "simplified choice" things are beginning to become less simple and more confusing. What was once a very simplified choice between only a few mattresses is now a choice between over a dozen competing manufacturers that all offer a single mattress. From the consumer perspective it has reached a point where there is no longer much difference in choosing between a dozen different mattresses made by a single company and single mattresses offered by over a dozen different companies.

This growing confusion and questions about the relative firmness/softness or "feel" of each of the many new startups and consumer efforts to differentiate them from each other has led to a proliferation of many private or "expert" online review sites that are trying to cash in on this growing group of new startups. Each of them is generally given a mattress to review by each new launch that is hungry for the publicity and then they "rate it" based on how firm or soft or how comfortable it feels to the reviewer or based on various other subjective criteria that each of them use to compare mattresses and give them a "rating" based on their opinions, on their subjective experiences, and who then provide a referral link for every mattress that they review which becomes their source of income. These sites tend to simply repeat the claims of the manufacturers they promote and it’s one of the ways that many of the newer online brands are currently marketing their products.

While I certainly don't object to efforts to earn an income (this is necessary for everyone of course) ... there are several significant issues with this approach to "rating" mattresses that can end up contributing more to some of the issues in the industry than provide a solution. In effect ... they are giving a new face to some very old problems in the industry.

The first of these is that their ratings are generally based on short term sleeping experiences that are very subjective and can vary widely from person to person. No matter what consumers may "want" to believe ... the reality is that other people's experiences or reviews on a mattress (either positive or negative) aren't a reliable source of information or guidance about how you will feel on the same mattress or how suitable or how durable it may be for you and in many cases they can be more misleading than helpful because a mattress that would be a perfect choice for one person may be completely unsuitable for someone else to sleep on (see post #13 here ).

The second is that there are no "standard" definitions or consensus of opinions for firmness ratings and different manufacturers can rate their mattresses very differently than others so a mattress that one manufacturer rates as being a specific firmness could be rated very differently by another manufacturer. Different people can also have very different perceptions of firmness and softness compared to others as well and a mattress that is firm for one can feel like "medium" for someone else or even "soft" for someone else (or vice versa) depending on their body type, sleeping style, physiology, their frame of reference based on what they are used to, and their individual sensitivity and perceptions. There are also different types of firmness and softness that different people may be sensitive to that can affect how they "rate" a mattress as well (see post #15 here ) so even mattress comparisons done by a single person can be very misleading since different people can also have very different opinions on how two mattresses compare in terms of firmness as well and some people may rate one mattress as being firmer than another and someone else may rate them the other way around. In other words ... this is all relative and very subjective and is as much an art as a science.

The third is that for the most part the mattresses that are being reviewed by most of these private or "expert" review sites are rated very close together so that there is very little to differentiate one mattress from another. In most cases this is based on a desire to maximize their revenue and affiliate income and referral fees because by rating each mattress close together they can earn income from the sales of all of them (or leave "room" for new startups that they may want to promote) rather than having people go to a different review site for the referral link for a mattress that they don't review highly. In other words they aren't providing any objective, "fact based" or quantifiable way to differentiate the mattresses (particularly about the quality and durability of the materials and components inside them) and by being "nice" about all of them for the most part they aren't doing any favors to consumers that are looking for a more legitimate or meaningful way to differentiate them.

Just as a point of reference ... the only companies that would currently quality to become a member of The Mattress Underground out of the group so far have already been invited and become members and the rest have either been turned down or wouldn't qualify yet because they are too new and don't have a long enough track record or don't yet meet all the criteria for membership in the site.

I also don't accept free products in exchange for a review (although it's been offered by most of these companies and many others) because I realize that my experience on a mattress won't reflect the experience of other people and would be meaningless and that that the "weight" and "influence" of any reviews I did would cause too many of the members here to "follow my lead" instead of choosing the mattress that would be best for them based on their own unique criteria. This would go against all the reasons I started the site to educate people about "how" to choose a mattress that is the best choice for each individual person.

Finally ... and perhaps most importantly ... they don't provide reliable "fact based" information about the quality and durability of the materials or the mattress "as a whole" in any meaningful way for any of the mattresses they are reviewing which is one of the most important parts of the "value" of a mattress purchase. Instead they end up implying that they are all good quality/value or promote the myth that the length of a warranty is an indication of the durability and useful life of a mattress before you will need to replace it which of course isn't the case at all (see post #174 here ).

Worse yet in an effort to cash in on this new group of rapidly growing startups they are promoting they are repeating many of the exaggerated stories on many of their websites so the stories "feed" each other and start to take on a life of their own. They also perpetuate and strengthen the myth that there are standardized firmness ratings that can be used to meaningfully compare mattresses, or that other people's experiences or reviews on a mattress will be similar or meaningful enough to others to make them a significant part of a buying decision when the type of "research" that is mostly limited to reading reviews can lead to some very poor mattress choices. There is a good video here about these type of "review sites" that is well worth watching

There are much better ways to make comparisons between mattresses or to decide on which mattress is the best "match" for any particular person based on more "fact based" research into the type and quality of the materials in a mattress and all the other criteria that are important to each person. There is more about the most important parts of the "value" of a mattress purchase in post #13 here that can help anyone make more meaningful quality/value comparisons between mattresses and in most cases the "missing link" that most so called "professional" review sites or "expert" sites either can't or won't tell you is that there really is a meaningful difference in the quality, durability, and "value" of the mattresses that are being sold in this category.

From a personal perspective ... I am grateful for the emergence of this new category of mattresses because most of them are reasonable to good (or in some cases great) quality/value mattresses compared to most of the mainstream alternatives (although some of them have do have some "weak links" in their design in terms of durability or for certain weight ranges) and they are shining some light on some of the worst practices in the industry so overall they are a positive influence in "cleaning up" an industry that is in great need of "cleaning up". Unfortunately in in the process in some cases the exaggerated claims they are promoting along with some overzealous marketing practices and "stories" to some degree makes many of them part of the very problems they are saying they are trying to solve instead of being part of a real solution that is more "fact based". Since they are so new, many consumers that haven't read the information on this or other "fact based" sites that includes a focus on the quality and durability of the materials inside a mattress haven't yet come to recognize this because with the amount of consumer frustration with the mainstream industry it is very easy to believe (or be predisposed to believe) a "counterculture" story that the whole industry is "corrupt" and that a new startup company is offering a "perfect" solution ... even if the solution isn't quite what it's being made out to be.

Having said all that ... in the next post there are some brief descriptions about each of the mattresses in the category where the materials are known and/or disclosed (and I would never purchase any mattress where you don't know the type and quality of the materials inside it) and it also includes a table that will provide the highlights of the materials in each of the current mattresses in this category.

As you will see ... there really are some objective differences that are "better or worse" in the quality and value of the mattresses that are being sold in this category.

Phoenix


Researching for a mattress?... Be sure to read this post first.
Last Edit: 11 Apr 2016 09:08 by Phoenix.

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Phoenix replied the topic: Simplified Choice Mattresses aka Disruptors, Bed In A Box, One Choice Fits All,

14 Jun 2015 12:08

Part 2 of 3:

NOTE: This list includes many of the "simplified choice" mattresses that are sold online but they are not the only good source of mattresses that are available online. For those of you that are considering online choices the optional online step in the mattress shopping tutorial also includes several other links to lists of online manufacturers or retailers that sell more than one mattress (which means that they aren't in this category) that would also be well worth considering.

There are many people that have asked questions on the forum about which of these mattresses is firmer or softer but firmness and softness isn't as simple as just measuring the amount a fixed weight sinks into a mattress and because they use different combinations of materials that have a different "feel" and respond differently to different weight ranges this can also translate into a different perception of softness and firmness as well.

As I mentioned in the previous post most of these mattresses that have a single firmness choice will be in a medium firmness range or slightly firmer (which is the single widest part of the bell curve that is suitable for the largest percentage of people) and the default choice for the ones that have more than one firmness choice will also be in the medium to medium/firm range and then the other firmness choices will be a little firmer or a little softer. While they are all offer a mattress in the middle of the firmness range that would be fairly similar in terms of actual firmness, different combinations of materials and components in the mattress can also interact with different body types and sleeping positions and perceptions in different ways and the specific properties of the materials and components in each of them can also affect the perception of firmness and softness in each of them in different ways for different people and will affect the more subjective "feel" and performance of each mattress as well in terms of PPP (Posture and alignment, Pressure relief, and Personal preferences)

I would also keep in mind that the only reliable way to know which mattress would feel softer or firmer for you (regardless of whether it would feel softer or firmer for someone else) compared to some of the others will be based on your personal experience or side by side testing but when you can't test a mattress in person then the most reliable source of guidance is always a more detailed phone conversation (either with a phone call or with their online chat system) 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 to different body types, sleeping positions, and preferences (or to other mattresses that they are familiar with) than anyone else.

Just to help you compare them based on the properties of the materials ... latex is a more resilient material that has more "bounce" and resilience ... memory foam is a slower response material that has very low resilience or "bounce" ... and the newer high performance polyfoam layers that are used in many of these mattresses can be formulated to have some of the properties of latex or some of the properties of memory foam depending on the specific formulation of the high performance polyfoam itself (they will tell you the properties of their specific materials when you talk or chat with them). If the materials are a high quality and durable version of the foam that they are using and are suitable for your weight range (see the foam quality guidelines here ) then the choice between them will be based more on your personal preferences rather than being a better/worse choice. The comments about each mattress also include some information about the weight ranges that each one would be suitable for which can give you some idea of the overall durability of each of them relative to the others.

There is also more about the most important parts of the "value" of a mattress purchase in post #13 here that can help you ask (and hopefully answer) the most important questions when you are purchasing a mattress and make more meaningful comparisons between mattresses.

SIMPLIFIED CHOICE MATTRESS COMPARISON TABLE
(aka Disruptors, Universal Comfort Mattresses, Once Choice Fits All mattresses, Bed in a Box mattresses, Millenial Mattresses)

Best Mattress Ever ~ Brooklyn Bedding
Materials & Construction:
Cover: Cotton
Comfort Layers: 2" Blended Talalay latex (ILDs 19/28/32 for S/M/F), 2" Synthetic Dunlop latex (ILDs 30/32/34 for S/M/F)
Support Layers: 6" 2.0 lb polyfoam with convolute on top.
Fire Retardant: Non chemical, inherent woven silica fire retardant sock
Firmness Choices:
Soft, Medium, Firm
Trial Period & Refund:
120 days free return and refund
Queen Price:
$750.00
The Mattress Underground Member?
Yes. 5% discount code for forum members here is “underground”.
Comments:
Factory direct manufacturer. Suitable for all weight ranges.
Brooklyn Bedding is the first actual manufacturer that owns their own factory in this category. They have three firmness choices (soft, medium, and firm) rather than one so their mattresses cover a wider range of the bell curve that would meet the needs and preferences of a larger percentage of consumers than a single firmness choice. The cotton cover is quilted with a thin (less than an inch) layer of polyfoam to provide a softer "surface" feel so the mattress finishes at about 11". Their 2.0 lb polyfoam base layer is a higher density than the norm in this category and with the quality of the comfort materials and the support core this mattress would be suitable for any weight range.



Kiss Mattress ~ SleepEZ
Materials & Construction:
Cover: Rayon/Polyester fabric zip cover
Comfort Layers: 1.5” Blended Talalay latex, 1.5” 4 lb “Float” High Performance polyfoam
Support Layers: 7" 2.0 lb polyfoam
Fire Retardant: Non chemical, inherent woven silica fire retardant sock
Firmness Choices:
Plush, Firm
Trial Period & Refund:
100 days free return and refund
Queen Price:
$795.00
The Mattress Underground Member?
Yes. 5% discount. Pillow bonus for forum members.
Comments:
Factory direct manufacturer. Suitable for all weight ranges.
The Kiss mattress is made by SleepEZ and is another true factory direct manufacturer with its own factory. They have two firmness choices to cover a broader range of the bell curve that will fit more people than a single firmness choice with one choice on the plush side of medium and the other on the firmer side of medium. The 4 lb “float” high performance polyfoam has the conforming properties of memory foam without the slow response and very low resilience of memory foam which can lead to the "stuck" feeling that is common to many memory foams. The 7" base layer of 2 lb polyfoam is a higher quality material than you would normally find in this category. The cover is a high performance rayon/polyester blend. These are all very high quality materials and this is also a mattress that has no weak links in the design and would be suitable for any weight range without any qualifications.



Materials & Construction:
Cover: Cotton stretch-knit with phase change material
Comfort Layers: Medium – 3” 2.8 lb. Energex polyfoam, 1” 2.0 lb convoluted polyfoam. Luxury Firm – 2” 2.8 lb Energex polyfoam.
Support Layers: Medium – 6” 1.8 lb polyfoam. Luxury Firm – 8” 1.8 lb. polyfoam.
Fire Retardant: Non chemical. Inherent rayon/silica fire barrier
Firmness Choices:
Medium, Luxury Firm
Trial Period & Refund:
100 days free return and refund
Queen Price:
$599.00
The Mattress Underground Member?
Yes. The 5% TMU discount for the forum members here is "UNDERGROUND5”.
Comments:
Factory direct manufacturer. Caution for higher weight ranges.
The Love & Sleep mattress is made by Brooklyn Bedding, a part owner of Nest Bedding. They have two firmness choices (medium, and luxury firm) so they will cover a wider range of the bell curve that would be suitable for different people than a single firmness choice. The Energex is hole-punched for breathability, and is a high quality and high performance polyfoam that has some of the properties of memory foam without the temperature sensitivity and slow response. There are no lower quality materials or weak links in this mattress for those that are in more average weight ranges although I would add a caution for those that are in higher weight ranges (200s or higher because of the 1.8 lb polyfoam core).



Sedona Sleep ~ Arizona Premium
Materials & Construction:
Cover: Bamboo/polyester/Lycra stretch knit
Comfort Layers: 3" blended Talalay latex
Support Layers: 7" 1.9 lb Polyfoam
Fire Retardant: Non chemical. Inherent fire barrier
Firmness Choices:
4 firmness levels from soft to firm 19 - 36 ILD
Trial Period & Refund:
100 days exchange/return (customer pays UPS shipping at their commercial rate).
Queen Price:
Base - $470.00. Topper - $400.00.
The Mattress Underground Member?
Yes. The 5% TMU discount for the forum members here is "MUDISCOUNT”.
Comments:
Factory direct manufacturer. Suitable for all weight ranges.
Sedona Sleep is a sister company to Arizona Premium Mattress, who is also a member of this site. Their mattress is a two piece component system that is somewhat unique because it includes a separate finished "base mattress" that is made from 7" of 1.9 lb polyfoam which can be used by itself as a low cost medium firm mattress. It can also be used underneath an existing topper if you already have a topper and the mattress underneath it has developed soft spots or is sagging and needs to be replaced. The complete two-piece system also includes a 3" blended Talalay latex topper in your choice of 4 different firmness levels on top of the base mattress and they also provide the option for a split firmness topper so each side of the complete system can have its own firmness level (in queen and king sizes). The topper can also be exchanged for a different firmness level during the 100 day trial period for the UPS shipping cost (using their commercial UPS rate). The base mattress and the topper are both high quality materials and there are no lower quality materials or weak links in the sleeping system.



Materials & Construction:
Cover: Removable, washable knit cover
Comfort Layers: 2" of 3.7-5 lb airflow or gel memory foam (varies by firmness), 2" of 4-5 lb memory foam (varies by firmness).
Support Layers: 7" 1.8 lb Polyfoam
Fire Retardant: Non chemical. Inherent fire barrier
Firmness Choices:
Soft, Medium, Firm. Optional comfort+ attachment.
Trial Period & Refund:
120 days Free Return & Refund
Queen Price:
$1099.00
The Mattress Underground Member?
Yes. The discount code for the $100 TMU discount for the forum members here is "MU100".
Comments:
Reseller. Caution for higher weight ranges for soft and firm. Slight caution for higher weight ranges for medium
Novosbed introduced their new "simplified choice" memory foam mattress in Jan. 2016, which replaces their previous lineup. They use good quality/density materials and their mattress comes in your choice of three different firmness levels that each have different memory foam densities and firmness levels (two 4 and/or 5 lb memory foam layers and a 1.8 lb polyfoam base layer). They also have an optional "comfort +" attachment in different firmness levels as well which uses 2 lb polyfoam which is also a high quality material and is an additional zip attachment to the mattress for those that need to soften up or firm up their original choice after their purchase. They provide good guidance about firmness options on the phone. For most people there are no lower quality materials or weak links in the mattress but I would add a caution for their soft and firm options for higher weight ranges (more than the lower 200's or so) and a "slight caution" for their medium mattress for higher weight ranges.



Addable ~ Spindle
Materials & Construction:
Cover: 4 way stretch polyester
Comfort Layers: 2" 4 lb gel memory foam. 2" 1.8 lb polyfoam.
Support Layers: 6" 2 lb Highly Resilient Polyfoam
Fire Retardant: Non chemical. Inherent fire barrier
Firmness Choices:
Single firmness
Trial Period & Refund:
181 days. Donation & Refund.
Queen Price:
$499.99
The Mattress Underground Member?
Yes. The discount code for the 5% TMU discount for forum members is "UNDERGROUND".
Comments:
Manufacturer. Caution for higher weight ranges.
Addable is from Spindle who also members of the site. Their final design was based on the results of a focus group that tested many iterations of the mattress. They are also taking transparency and "truth in marketing" to a higher level with their matchmaker questionnaire which asks a series of questions to help their customers to assess whether the mattress may be a suitable choice (rather than saying that it will be suitable for everyone) and they have also listed all their material and manufacturing costs on their site and made their lower margins very obvious (which is one of the reasons for their low cost compared to most other simplified choice mattresses as well). There are no lower quality materials or weak links in the mattress although I would be cautious with higher weight ranges (more than the lower 200's or so).



Materials & Construction:
Cover: Stretch knit
Comfort Layers: 1,5" blended Talalay latex. 1.5" 2.0 lb polyfoam.
Support Layers: 6" 2.0 lb Polyfoam. 3" Dreamcell 70% natural/30% synthetic blended Dunlop cylinders in a cutout in the polyfoam under the shoulders/upper torso or hips.
Fire Retardant: Non chemical. Inherent fire retardant sock.
Firmness Choices:
Two firmness zones
Trial Period & Refund:
101 days. Free return & Refund.
Queen Price:
$925.00
The Mattress Underground Member?
Yes. The code for the $50 discount offered to the members of the forum is "Underground".
Comments:
Manufacturer. Suitable for all weight ranges.
The OSO mattress has a somewhat unusual design, as the base layer has a cutout under the shoulders and upper torso that contains 3" Reverie dreamcell cylinders which are made from 70% natural/30% synthetic latex which creates a softer zone under the shoulders and upper torso which can be beneficial for side sleepers especially because the shoulders are generally wider and lighter than the hips and having a softer layer under the shoulders allows the shoulders to sink in more deeply which can improve pressure relief under the shoulders and also can also improve spinal alignment in the upper body. For those that either need or prefer more firmness under the shoulders and upper body then you can also rotate the mattress 180 degrees and then the softer zone would fall underneath the lower legs and calf where it will have no effect on the shoulders or upper body alignment and would be similar to a single zone mattress. These are all good quality and durable materials and there are no weak links in the mattress relative to any weight range



Materials & Construction:
Cover: 95% Rayon surface content. 50% rayon, 50% polyester overall.
Comfort Layers: 3" 2.8 lb High performance polyfoam
Support Layers: 7" 1.8 lb Polyfoam
Fire Retardant: Non chemical. Inherent rayon/cellulose/polyester/silica.
Firmness Choices:
Single firmness
Trial Period & Refund:
100 days. Free return & Refund.
Queen Price:
$600.00
The Mattress Underground Member?
No.
Comments:
Reseller. Slight caution for higher weight ranges.
One of the earliest companies in this category. They have a mindset of constant improvement and iteration in their mattress. The 2.8 lb high performance polyfoam has good contouring and some localized bounce. on top of a 7" 1.8 lb polyfoam support core. For most people there would be no weak links in terms of the quality/durability of the materials in the comfort layers of the mattress, although with the 1.8 lb support core I would add a slight caution for those who are in the mid 200's or higher because the durability of the base layer will play a more important role with higher weight ranges and could reduce the useful life of the mattress.



Materials & Construction:
Cover: Knit and woven zip cover, polyester/polypropylene.
Comfort Layers: 1.5" 3.5 lb ventilated polyfoam, 1.5" 4 lb 10 ILD Memory foam, 1.5" 2.5 lb polyfoam
Support Layers: 5" 1.5 lb 36 ILD Polyfoam
Fire Retardant: Non chemical, Inherent woven silica fire retardant sock.
Firmness Choices:
Single firmness
Trial Period & Refund:
100 days. Free return & Refund.
Queen Price:
$950.00
The Mattress Underground Member?
No.
Comments:
Reseller. Caution for higher weight ranges.
Casper’s high performance polyfoam top comfort layer provides some surface resiliency and freedom of movement while the memory foam underneath it provides some additional softness and contouring and motion isolation. For most people there would be no obvious weak links in the quality or durability of the comfort materials as long as you aren't in a higher weight range (more than the low 200's or so) with the 4 lb memory foam, but the 1.5 lb polyfoam base layer is a little on the low side in terms of density/durability in this price range so I would be cautious with this mattress for those that are in higher weight ranges (more than the low 200's or so) or perhaps a little lower.



Materials & Construction:
Cover: Zip cover, Unknown fabric.
Comfort Layers: 1” 5.0 lb High performance polyfoam, 2” 4.0 lb Gel memory foam.
Support Layers: 5" 1.8 lb Polyfoam, 2" 1.8 lb Polyfoam.
Fire Retardant: Unspecified
Firmness Choices:
Single firmness
Trial Period & Refund:
365 days. Free return & Refund.
Queen Price:
$874.00
The Mattress Underground Member?
No.
Comments:
Reseller. Caution for higher weight ranges.
There is some information about Yogabed including their replies to some questions about their mattress in this topic that you may wish to read . Their foam layerings have changed since their inception and this chart is using their previous foam densities. Unfortunately, it’s been difficult to get any density information from them, so I advise caution with companies when this is the case until you can confirm things for yourself. They do use a little less of the more premium (and more costly) specialty foams in their 3" comfort layers than some of the other "one choice fits all" mattresses which use between 3" and 4" of specialty foams in their comfort layers. For most weight ranges there would be no obvious weak links in this mattress either although once again in higher weight ranges (over the low 200's or so) I would be cautious with the 4 lb gel memory foam and the 1.8 lb polyfoam base layer which are a little on the low side for higher weight ranges in terms of density/durability.



Materials & Construction:
Cover: Zip cover, Unknown fabric.
Comfort Layers: 1.5" 3.5 lb Gel memory foam, 1" 3 lb high performance polyfoam, 1.5" 3 lb high performance polyfoam
Support Layers: 7" 1.8 lb polyfoam with firmer edge support
Fire Retardant: Non chemical, Inherent fire retardant sock
Firmness Choices:
Single firmness
Trial Period & Refund:
100 days. Coordinates donation to charity. Return costs not specified.
Queen Price:
$899.00
The Mattress Underground Member?
No.
Comments:
Reseller. Caution for higher weight ranges.
There is a little more information about 4Sleep in posts #4 and onwards in this topic . I have talked with Lori who is one of the owners and she and her husband are committed to being transparent about the materials they use and providing good service and a good quality/value mattress to consumers. Like many in this category of mattresses they are working directly with a manufacturer in the design and construction of their mattress but they are not a manufacturer themselves. Kevin has years of experience in foam manufacturing and Lori has many years of experience in brand building and marketing. With the 3.5 lb memory foam and the 1.8 lb polyfoam I would be a little cautious if you are in a higher weight range (more than the lower 200's or so) where I would look for higher density and more durable materials to reduce the risk of foam softening and break down over the longer term.



Materials & Construction:
Cover: Celliant high performance fabric
Comfort Layers: 1.0" 4.0 lb Graphite memory foam, 1.5" 3 lb high performance polyfoam, 1.0" 3 lb (slightly firmer) high performance polyfoam
Support Layers: 5.5" 1.8 lb polyfoam
Fire Retardant: Non chemical, Inherent fire retardant sock
Firmness Choices:
Single firmness
Trial Period & Refund:
100 days. Free return & Refund.
Queen Price:
$850.00
The Mattress Underground Member?
No.
Comments:
Reseller. Slight caution for higher weight ranges.
I have talked with the owner Scott Paladini who has years or experience in the retail end of the industry and wanted to build his own mattress design. They use a Celliant cover which is a high performance and more costly fabric that has some testing behind it that indicates that it can help with rest and recovery for those that have more active or athletic lifestyles (or even not so active). There are no lower quality materials or weak links in the mattress but with the foam density of the base layer I would also add a "slight" caution for those that are in higher weight ranges.



Materials & Construction:
Cover: Polyester stretch fabric
Comfort Layers: 2" Helix Dynamic Foam (HD polyfoam) in one of three different firmness levels (2.5 – 3.0 lb.), 2.4" microcoil, 2.0" 1.8 lb polyfoam in one of three different firmness levels. The firmness of the polyfoam and the order of the comfort layers is customized for each person
Support Layers: 4.0" 1.8 lb polyfoam
Fire Retardant: Non chemical, Inherent fire retardant sock
Firmness Choices:
Customizable for each person
Trial Period & Refund:
100 days. Free return & Refund.
Queen Price:
$995.00
The Mattress Underground Member?
No.
Comments:
Reseller. Slight caution for higher weight ranges.
I have talked with the 3 founders of Helix Sleep and they consulted with a well known group of PHD's and researchers in sleep ergonomics and have designed a rather unique mattress that uses a customizable combination of 3 different comfort/transition layers. They use a questionnaire with their customers that takes information such as BMI, body measurements, and sleeping positions into account and use an algorithm to choose the both the order and the firmness of each of the comfort layers that are most suitable for each of their customers. The 3 comfort layers are on top of 4" of 1.8 lb polyfoam with two different firmness levels. They can also build a side to side split with different combinations and firmness levels on each side of the mattress for couples with different needs and preferences. They use good quality materials that would be suitable for most weight ranges in terms of durability but I would add a slight caution for higher weight ranges (more than about the lower 200's or so).



Materials & Construction:
Cover: Zippered stretch knit polyester top cover and polyester/polypropylene side panels.
Comfort Layers: 1.5" Continuous pour synthetic Dunlop latex, 2" 4 lb density gel memory foam.
Support Layers: 7.5"2.0 lb polyfoam
Fire Retardant: Unspecified
Firmness Choices:
Single firmness
Trial Period & Refund:
101 days. Cost to return for a refund is unspecified.
Queen Price:
$795.00
The Mattress Underground Member?
No.
Comments:
Reseller. Caution for higher weight ranges.
Ghostbed is made by Nature's Sleep (.com, not .ca which is a very different company). Nature's Sleep has been making mattresses in their Chinese factory and importing them into the US for many years but this mattress is made in the US with American materials. There are also some additional comments about them in this topic . These are all good quality materials and there are no lower quality materials or weak links in the mattress relative to more average weight ranges but I would be cautious if you are in a higher weight range (more than the lower 200's or so) where I would minimize the use of 4 lb memory foam in the comfort layers of a mattress.



Materials & Construction:
Cover: Stretch knit. Not removable.
Comfort Layers: 1” 1.5 lb polyfoam in quilted to cover, 2” blended Talalay latex (Talalay Global), 1” 4 lb gel memory foam.
Support Layers: pocketed coil zoned spring unit with coil edge reinforcement, 1” 1.8 lb polyfoam base.
Fire Retardant: Non chemical. Inherent rayon/cellulose/polyester/silica.
Firmness Choices:
Plush or Medium Firm (latex layer ILD varies based upon choice)
Trial Period & Refund:
100 days. Free return & Refund.
Queen Price:
$925.00
The Mattress Underground Member?
No.
Comments:
Reseller. Slight caution for higher weight ranges.
Choosing Plush or Medium Firm will result in a variation of the ILD of the latex layer. These are all good quality materials and there are no lower quality materials or weak links in the mattress relative to more average weight ranges but I would provide a slight caution if you are in a higher weight range (more than the lower 200's or so) because of the 4 lb memory foam and the 1.5 lb quilt polyfoam.



Materials & Construction:
Cover: Removable stretch polyester/rayon blend
Comfort Layers: 2" Phase change gel memory foam (4.5 lb density), 2" Memory foam (4 lb density), 2" Energex high performance polyfoam (3.1 lb density).
Support Layers: 4" Polyfoam (1.8 lb density)
Fire Retardant: Non chemical, Inherent fire retardant sock
Firmness Choices:
Single Firmness
Trial Period & Refund:
100 days. Free return & Refund.
Queen Price:
$875.00
The Mattress Underground Member?
No.
Comments:
Reseller. Caution for higher weight ranges.
Began as a successful crowd funding campaign to fund their new company in Sept, 2015 and began to deliver their mattresses in Oct, 2015. There are some comments about them in this topic . They are somewhat unusual in that they use 6" of specialty foam in their mattresses. They are all good quality materials and there are no lower quality materials or weak links in their mattress relative to more average weight ranges but I would be cautious if you are in a higher weight range (more than the lower 200's or so) where I would minimize the use of 4 lb memory foam in the upper layers of a mattress.



Materials & Construction:
Cover: Polyester/Lycra blend zip cover
Comfort Layers: 2" 3.65 lb Avena polyfoam (20-26 IFD), 2" 3lb Memory foam (9 IFD)
Support Layers: 6" Polyfoam 1.8 lb density (32-38 IFD)
Fire Retardant: Non chemical, Inherent fire retardant sock
Firmness Choices:
Single Firmness
Trial Period & Refund:
100 days. Free return & Refund.
Queen Price:
$940.00
The Mattress Underground Member?
No.
Comments:
Reseller. CAUTION: 2" of 3 lb memory foam is a potential weak link in this mattress.
You can read more about Leesa in post #2 here . The 2" of 3.75 lb high performance "latex like" Avena polyfoam is good quality, but I would be cautious because of the 2" of 3 lb memory foam in the comfort layers which could be a weak link in the mattress in terms of durability.



Materials & Construction:
Cover: Tencel stretch fabric
Comfort Layers: 1" 1.5 lb Hypersoft gel infused polyfoam (17 ILD) in quilt, 1" 1.5 lb gel polyfoam (17 ILD),
1353 (queen size) microcoil foam encased (1.5 lb density for encasement), densified cotton lumbar pad.
Support Layers: Pocket coil (858 coils/queen foam encased with 4.5" of 1.5 lb polyfoam), 2” 1.5 lb polyfoam base (28 ILD).
Fire Retardant: Cotton/Boron/Polyester/Rayon
Firmness Choices:
Single Firmness (can customize with phone consultation)
Trial Period & Refund:
101 days. Free return & Refund.
Queen Price:
$1299.00
The Mattress Underground Member?
No.
Comments:
Reseller. Slight caution because of the top 2" of 1.5 lb polyfoam which is "not bad" but is more than the guidelines I would normally suggest
Winkbeds is one of the few innerspring or "coil on coil" mattresses in this category. My only caution here is that they use 2" of 1.5 lb polyfoam in the top layers of the mattress and while this is "not bad" and is better than most of the mainstream mattresses in the industry which tend to use thicker layers of the same or even lower quality/density polyfoam ... it is also "on the edge" of the guidelines that I would normally suggest which is "no more than about an inch or so of lower quality and less durable materials in the upper layers of the mattress" so I would add a "slight" caution here relative to durability. There is also more about them in this topic . They also offer a unique coolControl base that may be used with their mattress that circulates air into the mattress and can adjust the temperature in a 12 degree range, and can be adjusted differently on the left and right side of the mattress.



Materials & Construction:
Cover: 40% organic cotton circular knit top panel and 40% oganic cotton border.
Comfort Layers: 1.25" 1.5 lb Polyfoam + 1 oz. Dacron + .75" Fiber in quilt, 4" 884 Pocket Coil 14.5 Gauge (1.5 lb polyfoam encased), .375" Memory foam lumbar pad (5 lb), .625" Polyfoam (1.8 lb density)
Support Layers: 1/2" Loft pad, 7" 416 Bonnell 13 Gauge (1.5 lb polyfoam encased), Dual torsion steel edge guards, .875" Fiber pad bottom
Fire Retardant: Non chemical, inherent rayon (from thistle)/polyester fire retardant fabric.
Firmness Choices:
Plush soft, Luxury firm, Firm
Trial Period & Refund:
120 days, Free return & Refund - less original shipping costs.
Queen Price:
$1299.00
The Mattress Underground Member?
No.
Comments:
Reseller. CAUTION: These are better specs than most mainstream innerspring mattresses in this budget range but foam and fiber in the quilting is a potential weak link in this mattress.
Saatva was the first mattress in the "simplified choice" category and are one of the few innerspring mattresses in the category as well. While in general they use good quality materials and components and they would be a better quality/value choice than most innerspring mattresses or many coil on coil mattresses in this category, they also use some lower density or less durable polyfoam and fiber materials in the quilting layers which could be a potential weak link in their mattress so I would add a caution here because of the potential durability issues. They are also zoned in several ways (the quilting, a lumbar pad, and the Bonnell coil) to provide additional support under the heavier parts of the body. There is a more detailed analysis of their mattress in post #1 here .



Loom & Leaf ~ Saatva
Materials & Construction:
Cover: Organic cotton/polyester blend quilted with .625" polyfoam.
Comfort Layers: Soft solid gel lumbar layer, 2" Convoluted gel memory foam (4 lb density), 2.5" memory foam (5 lb density).
Support Layers: 2" Transition layer (1.5 lb or higher polyfoam material), 5.5" Polyfoam (1.5 lb or higher polyfoam).
Fire Retardant: Non chemical, inherent rayon (from thistle)/polyester fire retardant fabric.
Firmness Choices:
Relaxed firm, Firm
Trial Period & Refund:
120 days, Free return & Refund - less original shipping costs.
Queen Price:
$1099.00
The Mattress Underground Member?
No.
Comments:
Reseller. Caution for higher weight ranges. They told me that the foam density for the bottom two layers were 1.5 - 1.8 lbs, so I would treat them as 1.5 lbs.
Saatva wouldn’t disclose to me the density of the bottom two layers (see post #2 here ) so I would treat them both as 1.5 lb density. They also use a thin lumbar layer of soft solid gel (not gel foam) on top of the gel memory foam for additional temperature regulation and to add additional zoning support under the heavier parts of the body that for some people can help with alignment. I would be cautious for those that are in higher weight ranges (more than the low 200's or so) or perhaps even a little lower than this because of the lower density polyfoam layers and the 4 lb convoluted gel memory foam in the top layers.



Zenhaven ~ Saatva
Materials & Construction:
Cover: Organic cotton circular knit top panel
Comfort Layers: Gentle Firm Side - 1.5” 5-Zone Natural Talalay (N2 – 20-25 ILD), Luxury Plush Side – 1.5” 5-Zone Natural Talalay (N1 – 14-20 ILD).
Support Layers: Gentle Firm Side – 3” Natural Talalay (N4 – 30-35 ILD), Luxury Plush Side – 3” Natural Talalay (N3 – 25-30 ILD).
Fire Retardant: 1” layer of natural 100% organic New Zealand wool.
Firmness Choices:
Flippable with Gentle Firm and Luxury Plush side.
Trial Period & Refund:
120 days, Free return & Refund - less original shipping costs.
Queen Price:
$1899.00
The Mattress Underground Member?
No.
Comments:
Reseller. All latex is from Talalay Global, 100% NR line. No "weak links" in mattress componentry.



Materials & Construction:
Cover: Polyester, top portion removable.
Comfort Layers: 2” 3 lb gel memory foam, 3” 1.8 lb polyfoam.
Support Layers: 5” 1.8 lb polyfoam
Fire Retardant: Non chemical, Inherent fire retardant sock
Firmness Choices:
Single firmness
Trial Period & Refund:
100 days, Free return & Refund
Queen Price:
$700.00
The Mattress Underground Member?
No.
Comments:
Reseller. AVOID. The 2" of 3 lb memory foam is lower density memory foam than I would suggest and is a potential weak link in this mattress and I would avoid it.



Materials & Construction:
Cover: Removable, Knit fabric. 29% Viscose, 67% Polyester, 4% Lycra. Machine wash/dry not recommended.
Comfort Layers: 2” Buckling column gel (Hyper-Elastic Polymer), 3.25 or 3.5” (they list two thicknesses on their web site) 1.8 lb polyfoam.
Support Layers: 4” 2.0 lb polyfoam
Fire Retardant: Non-Toxic Knit Barrier
Firmness Choices:
Single firmness
Trial Period & Refund:
100 nights, Free return (they arrange local donation center pick-up) & Refund
Queen Price:
$999.00
The Mattress Underground Member?
No.
Comments:
Reseller. Slight caution for higher weight ranges with the 1.8 lb polyfoam.
Uses a unique bucking column gel they call Hyper-Elastic Polymer. There is more about buckling column gel in this article and in post #2 here and the posts it links to and a forum search on " buckling column gel " will also bring up more comments and feedback about it as well.



Materials & Construction:
Cover: Zipperable, 73% polyester, 23% viscose, 4% elastane, quilted to .5” memory foam, polyester and FR fiber barrier. Spot clean only.
Comfort Layers: 3.5” 4.0 lb SBT (Support Balancing Technology) polyfoam layer, 1” 4 lb memory foam, 1.5” 4 lb. 80/20 SBR/NR Dunlop latex. All three layers wrapped in fabric to form flippable element. Ability to split sides.
Support Layers: 3.5” 2.0 lb polyfoam
Fire Retardant: Non chemical, Inherent fire retardant fiber barrier
Firmness Choices:
Plush, Medium, Firm (by rearranging layers)
Trial Period & Refund:
1000 nights, Free return (they attempt to donate to AmVets) & Refund
Queen Price:
$1099.00
The Mattress Underground Member?
No.
Comments:
Reseller. “Slight” caution for higher weight ranges.
Innovative design with three different top layers laminated together and wrapped in fabric, allowing for three different comfort configurations within the same mattress by rearranging layers. Unique engineered SBT foam layer has “pods’ that act like combination of buckling column gel and springs. Longer return period and they work with consumer to get configuration correct. You can read more about them here .



Materials & Construction:
Cover: Removable, dry clean only. Material unspecified.
Comfort Layers: Soft Side – 3” 3 lb. copper infused memory foam. Firm Side – 1” 3 lb. copper infused memory foam.
Support Layers: 6" Center polyfoam core – 1.8 lb. with convoluted pointing up toward plush side.
Fire Retardant: Type not specified.
Firmness Choices:
Soft or Firm (flippable).
Trial Period & Refund:
120 days, Free return & Refund
Queen Price:
$899.00
The Mattress Underground Member?
No.
Comments:
Reseller. AVOID. The ttoal of 4" of 3 lb memory foam is lower density memory foam than I would suggest and is a potential weak link in this mattress and I would avoid it.



Materials & Construction:
Cover: Cover using organic cotton. Bamboo/Rayon fabric with copper optional.
Comfort Layers: 1” graphite infused 19 ILD Talalay latex. 4” 1.8 lb polyfoam (Soft – 22 ILD, Medium – 28 ILD, Firm – 35 ILD).
Support Layers: 4” pocketed coil spring unit with 1.8 lb polyfoam edge system 40 ILD. Base polyfoam 2” 1.8 lb 40 ILD.
Fire Retardant: Non chemical, Inherent rayon/silica fire retardant sock.
Firmness Choices:
Soft, Medium, Plush. Split layering offered.
Trial Period & Refund:
100 nights, Free return & Refund
Queen Price:
$775.00
The Mattress Underground Member?
No.
Comments:
Reseller. Slight caution for higher weight ranges with the 4" of 1.8 lb polyfoam in upper layers.



Materials & Construction:
Cover: Organic cotton cover.
Comfort Layers: 2.5” 100% natural Dunlop latex. 24-26 ILD for Medium (D75), 29-31 ILD for Medium-Firm (D80).
Support Layers: Quantum Edge pocketed spring unit, 16 gauge steel with 15 gauge on outer edge.
Fire Retardant: Non chemical, Inherent fire retardant fiber barrier
Firmness Choices:
Medium, Medium-Firm
Trial Period & Refund:
90 nights, Free return & Refund
Queen Price:
$999.00
The Mattress Underground Member?
No.
Comments:
Reseller. Suitable for all weight ranges.




AVOID UNTIL COMPLETE SPECS ARE KNOWN
I would avoid all the others that are listed in the table until their complete specs are known (see this article ) so you can confirm there are no lower quality materials or "weak links" in their mattresses.

Hopefully you will also have read the mattress shopping tutorial so you will realize that there is no such thing as a mattress that is "universally comfortable" or the best match for a majority of people because each person's needs and preferences and the mattress that is best for each person in terms of PPP can be very different from someone else.

If you are considering one of these mattresses then it's important to set aside some of the marketing information that you will find on many of their websites and make your choices based on more factual information and on the type and quality/durability of the materials in the mattresses and on the properties of the materials and the "feel" that you believe you would prefer so you have a better chance of choosing a mattress that is the best match for you in terms of PPP, durability, and on all the the other objective, subjective, and intangible parts of your personal value equation that are most important to you.

A forum search on the name of any of these mattresses (or on the company that makes them for the ones that are newer or if the mattress has a different name than the company) will also bring up more comments and feedback about them as well. Make sure that you set the "find posts from" setting to "any date" so you can read as far back as you would like to.

Noomi ~ (Formerly Nimbus)
Materials & Construction:
Cover: Organic cotton
Comfort Layers: 3" Gel memory foam (? Density)
Support Layers: 8" Polyfoam (? Density), Recycled foams?
Fire Retardant: Unspecified
Firmness Choices:
Single firmness
Trial Period & Refund:
101 days, Free return & Refund
Queen Price:
$875.00
The Mattress Underground Member?
No.
Comments:
Reseller. AVOID until complete specs are known.
Little meaningful technical information listed on their web site.



Materials & Construction:
Cover: Removable, Unknown fabric
Comfort Layers: 2.5” memory foam (? Density), 1” gel memory foam (? Density).
Support Layers: 8.5" Polyfoam (? Density)
Fire Retardant: Unspecified
Firmness Choices:
Single firmness
Trial Period & Refund:
100 days, Free return & Refund
Queen Price:
$799.00
The Mattress Underground Member?
No.
Comments:
Reseller. AVOID until complete specs are known.
Little meaningful technical information listed on their web site.



Materials & Construction:
Cover: Removable, Rayon/polyester blend.
Comfort Layers: 1.5"" Gel memory foam (? density), 1.5" Polyfoam (? density)
Support Layers: 7" Polyfoam (? density)
Fire Retardant: Non chemical, Inherent rayon/silica fire retardant sock.
Firmness Choices:
Single firmness
Trial Period & Refund:
100 days, Free return & Refund
Queen Price:
$850.00
The Mattress Underground Member?
No.
Comments:
Reseller. AVOID until complete specs are known.
Little meaningful technical information listed on their web site, and they may not provide it if asked. See this topic .



Materials & Construction:
Cover: Unspecified
Comfort Layers: 1.5” Mountain Top Dunlop latex (? blend), 2.5” Gel memory foam (? density).
Support Layers: 8" Polyfoam (? density). Base is “Medium Soft” or “Medium Firm” with comfort preference ordered.
Fire Retardant: Unspecified
Firmness Choices:
Medium Soft or Medium Firm (polyfoam core is changed based upon order).
Trial Period & Refund:
200 days, Free return & Refund
Queen Price:
$849.00
The Mattress Underground Member?
No.
Comments:
Reseller. AVOID until complete specs are known.
Little meaningful technical information listed on their web site.




NOTE ADDED January 17, 2017: In addition to the simplified choice mattresses that are already included in this list ... there are currently many more (over 100 in total) that I'm aware of that have been more recently launched that aren't included in the list yet which I will add to the list over the coming weeks. Some of these have been discussed in the forum in separate topics and some of them will also be included in the "avoid until complete specs are known" section of the list so if you have any questions about a "simplified choice" mattress that hasn't been included in the list yet feel free to ask about it on the forum and I'd be happy to link you to a post that discusses it or to share some comments about it.


Researching for a mattress?... Be sure to read this post first.
Last Edit: 20 Mar 2017 10:18 by Phoenix.

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Phoenix replied the topic: Simplified Choice Mattresses aka Disruptors, Bed In A Box, One Choice Fits All,

14 Jun 2015 12:09

Placeholder for Part #3 yet to come


Researching for a mattress?... Be sure to read this post first.
Last Edit: 14 Jun 2015 12:12 by Phoenix.

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drm870 replied the topic: Simplified Choice Mattresses aka Disruptors, Bed In A Box, One Choice Fits All,

14 Jun 2015 15:35

Great stuff so far! :)

Phoenix wrote: The third is that for the most part the mattresses that are being reviewed by most of these private or "expert" review sites are rated very close together so that there is very little to differentiate one mattress from another.


Yep, I've noticed this on a couple of those type of sites now. The rest of your thoughts and observations are pretty new to me, though.

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dodo replied the topic: Simplified Choice Mattresses aka Disruptors, Bed In A Box, One Choice Fits All,

14 Jun 2015 22:29

Hi Phoenix

Very informative article, as usual. I simply wanted to a address an issue you may deal with in Part III (or may have dealt with in one of your thousands of posts which no, I have not all read): the use of discount codes ("you get 50$ off, I get 50 off') as an Internet marketing tool. This, frankly, I find dishonest. If you were to give me 50 bucks every time I reviewed a product glowingly, or amusingly enough to convince somebody else to order it using the code posted with my review, I would not be posting many negative, acrimonious rants about said product. What is great, from the marketer's point of view, is that he does not have to get his hands dirty : he merely tempts the reviewer to err on the side of overenthusiasm.
This is particularly obvious on Yourube. Now... the viewership of Yourube is presumably relatively young, and this also would be the demographic most likely to find a one-size-fits-all mattress OK. But no matter how you spin it, it just ain't right. I realize consumers are not all naive or inattentive, but the proliferation of reviews that this marketing ploy generates attests to its success.

Last point: I also bought a mattress online because I could not stand shopping locally anymore. ("An ILD??? I swear, I have never ever heard anyone else use that term. Pffff! Get out of here"!) So in a way, I was looking for simplification. But I was very happy, when I had a problem with my mattress, to be able to talk to an experienced tradesman rather than a marketing person. Cuz I prefer fixing it to returning it.
That way I get to sleep on something, eh.

Dodo

Last Edit: 15 Jun 2015 02:07 by dodo. Reason: Punctuation punctiliousness

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PapaMike replied the topic: Simplified Choice Mattresses aka Disruptors, Bed In A Box, One Choice Fits All,

15 Jun 2015 05:20

Very informative and some of the statements by manufacturers concern me.

Will latex bedding manufacturers be replacing the 100% latex mattress by these one size fits most models?

For a manufacturer to say their new mattress sells for one third the price of their latex but feels the same leads me to believe I shouldn't buy their more expensive latex mattress unless I want to change layers.

Example:

The Kiss mattress is 1/3 the price but gives you the feel of a $2500 all latex mattress when combined with our unique Float memory foam.

Is the above statement just marketing hype or does the manufacturer believe it to be true?

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Phoenix replied the topic: Simplified Choice Mattresses aka Disruptors, Bed In A Box, One Choice Fits All,

15 Jun 2015 05:49

Hi dodo,

I simply wanted to a address an issue you may deal with in Part III (or may have dealt with in one of your thousands of posts which no, I have not all read): the use of paid-through-refund referral codes as a marketing ploy. This, frankly, I find dishonest. If you were to give me 50 bucks every time I reviewed a product glowingly, or amusingly enough to convince somebody else to order it using the code posted with my review, I would not be posting many negative, acrimonious rants about said product. What is great, from the marketer's point of view, is that he does not have to get his hands dirty : he merely tempts the reviewer to err on the side of overenthusiasm.
This is particularly obvious on Yourube. Now,,. the viewership of Yourube is presumably relatively young, and this also would be the demographic most likely to find a one-size-fits-all mattress OK. But no matter how you spin it (and some actually boast about their referral exploits), it just ain't right.


In general terms I completely agree with you. I have seen some online forums with dozens of posts about a particular mattress each with glowing "reviews" that in some cases are reviewing a mattress even before they've ever received it or slept on it just for the sake of adding their referral link to the list to get their discount. As you mentioned ... the financial incentive encourages people to write whatever they believe will provide them with a discount so the legitimacy of these types of reviews are certainly questionable at best.

The other issue that I have with this is that the people who are more comfortable "selling" a mattress to anyone they can convince to click on their link will pay lower prices than those who just purchase the mattress on its own merits and I personally prefer an approach that everyone pays the same price regardless of their ability to sell a mattress. In the end these types of referral fees are built into the cost of the mattress and with this type of referral system there are too many people who overpay for the mattress just because they aren't comfortable "selling" it.

A big part of the underlying problem with these types of marketing systems though is that consumers as a whole put too much trust in mattress reviews in the first place (either positive or negative) in the mistaken belief that they are a good way to assess whether a mattress would be a suitable or a durable choice for them so they end up choosing a mattress for all the wrong reasons based on other people's experiences and reviews or on the "deal" they think they are getting instead of legitimate "fact based" research that would be relevant to their own unique needs, preferences, and criteria. This is more of an issue with consumers in general that can really only be solved with education about how to buy a mattress but because reviews have become so important in today's online market they have gained a false aura of legitimacy and while they may not be the cause of the problem ... many mattress companies are well aware of their ability to influence people and change buying habits and certainly take full advantage of the mindset and target market that pays significant attention to them so they are really just taking advantage of a "reality" that they know will sell mattresses for them.

While most reviewers are certainly well meaning ... because most reviews aren't relevant to anyone but the reviewer and can be "influenced" so easily and in so many ways ... for the most part (with only few exceptions) mattress reviews are a classic example of garbage in / garbage out even though the "garbage" may be well meaning and true to the experience of the person writing the review. In many ways it reminds me of MLM companies which turn customers into salespeople where people will say whatever they need to say in their "testimonials" in order to sell their products and their business to others.

The real solution to the problem IMO would be to change the consumer mindset that places undue importance on online reviews in the first place which is the engine that drives these types of marketing systems along with the paid review services that will write online reviews for you for a fee as well so you can claim to have the "best reviewed mattress" which too many people believe translates into "the best mattress" when it doesn't ... but this is unlikely to change anytime soon.

Having said that ... from a different perspective I do understand the desire of a company to grow their sales in any way that they can (within reason) or to take advantage of marketing systems that clearly affects people's buying choices and there is no doubt that the click through referral links are effective and that they "work". This makes the manufacturer's choice to use them or not to use them a difficult one and I know from my conversations with them that many manufacturers struggle with this. Some of them believe that if they don't have the type of significant funds to spend on the type of advertising that is available to some of the better financed or better "connected" startups that it has almost reached a point where if they don't use these types of practices that they won't be able to compete with the companies that do. There have been many good manufacturers in the industry that have made great mattresses that are no longer in business because they just didn't have the marketing skills to compete with inferior manufacturers or large advertising budgets and companies that were better at marketing than they were.

In those cases where they have asked for my thoughts I have told them that if they do decide to go in this direction to gain some initial launch momentum then I would be very cautious about using them in a way that the type of reviews that are financially motivated are highly visible. If I owned a mattress company and I wanted some of the benefits of a referral system I would send customers a private link with instructions that it couldn't be posted online so that it would be possible to gain some initial launch momentum with a referral system without all the disadvantages of creating "fake reviews" where the longer term harm to credibility can offset the value of the reviews.

Once you start with this type of marketing scheme it's even more difficult to end it if there are thousands of online comments that include referral links that will remain visible for years and this can trap them into continuing them to prevent consumers that may otherwise purchase the mattress from feeling like they have "lost" or "missed" something or that they aren't getting a "good deal" any longer and buy from another company that does offer them regardless of the actual "value" of the mattress. I would also clearly indicate that this is a temporary launch bonus only that will have a fixed end date so that they aren't "locked in" to providing them on an ongoing basis and have a clear "exit plan".

Unfortunately in many people's eyes, this type of "creative" marketing has become a necessity in today's market as other more traditional forms of online marketing such as adwords lose their impact or effect or are becoming too competitive and too costly.

Some of the current group of "simplified choice" mattresses also appear to me to be more concerned with building "brand value" or "investor value" as quickly as possible as their primary goal rather than building great mattresses and a great company that will stand the test of time. If you can spend enough on marketing to build a brand that is worth tens of millions of dollars (and possibly more) in a relatively short period of time then it doesn't really matter if this type of marketing is sustainable or credible in the longer term because with the value of the brand as an exit strategy ... by the time this type of marketing may come back to bite (once consumers realize that if they don't also "sell" the mattress they purchase then they are probably overpaying for it) then they can just sell the company and have someone else deal with the fallout.

Phoenix


Researching for a mattress?... Be sure to read this post first.
Last Edit: 15 Jun 2015 05:55 by Phoenix.

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dodo replied the topic: Simplified Choice Mattresses aka Disruptors, Bed In A Box, One Choice Fits All,

15 Jun 2015 08:53

Hey Phoenix

Excellent analysis, excellent take on the 'bigger picture'. Kinda sad, actually, especially for small manufacturers.

Anyhoo, keep up the good work,

Dodo

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sindfw replied the topic: Simplified Choice Mattresses aka Disruptors, Bed In A Box, One Choice Fits All,

18 Jul 2015 14:58

This series of posts was straight-up the most helpful summary I've read anywhere.
I've been waffling btw T&N and Brooklyn, having dispensed with Casper and Saatva, but that's just me.
Loving the table, mainly for laying out the layers/structure of each brand.

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Phoenix replied the topic: Simplified Choice Mattresses aka Disruptors, Bed In A Box, One Choice Fits All,

18 Jul 2015 16:08

Hi sindfw,

I'm glad the information in this topic was helpful and thanks for the kind comments ... I appreciate them :)

I'm looking forward to finding out what you end up deciding.

Phoenix


Researching for a mattress?... Be sure to read this post first.

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Heyali replied the topic: Simplified Choice Mattresses aka Disruptors, Bed In A Box, One Choice Fits All,

24 Aug 2015 17:51

Dear Phoenix,

I have spent the last couple of days getting what seems like an advanced degree in mattress technology and I want to be sure I have been a good student. I am most likely going to purchase a king-sized mattress from a disruptor and I have examined all of the specifications that you provided. above with my PPP in mind,

PPP: I would like a mattress that will accommodate a 300-lb and a 180lb person (and two small dogs). We are getting to the point in our lives--late, late 40s--where we wake up achy, sleep poorly due to a combination of snoring, tossing and turning, menopause (sorry, if TMI!), and lifelong chronic insomnia. We are back, side and stomach sleepers and probably like medium support, though this is something that I cannot determine with certainty, since I've never really been sure what that means. We don't like the "dead feeling" of memory foam you describe, but some hugging is nice. Oh, and I think a hybrid/coil mattress is out of the question due to the anatomy of our staircase which has a hairpin turn, though if these types of mattresses are.flexible, coils might not be a deal-breaker. Having read the detailed information you've provided, it seems that the only two remotely plausible mattress choices for us are the Brooklyn Bedding and Kiss mattresses.

Comfort layer: Since you say latex is basically superior in all ways to polyfoam, I don't know why we would even consider any of the others which lack latex in the comfort layer. Using the guidelines you've provided on your site, the Brooklyn Bedding mattress looks better because of the additional 2.5" of latex in the comfort layer which will accommodate a heavier person and be more durable in the long-term. The blended Talalay is also a plus, but I don't know whether the synthetic Dunlop layer comes with disadvantages. The 4lb density of the Kiss also gives me some pause given our weight. The ILD is not listed (in your blog or on Brooklyn's site), so I'm not sure how to evaluate that. In fact, I'm not entirely sure how to determine what ILD is best for us. You suggest a lower ILD for the comfort layer and a higher for the core, but I'm not sure what that means in terms of specifications. The Nest looked promising at first, but their site has no specifications listed nor is there any info about shipping and returns.

Core: That brings us to the core of each mattress. The Kiss has an extra inch of polyfoam, though they both appear to use the same grade and density. You state that the first 5-6" are the most important in a mattress, so the additional inch in the Kiss seems outweighed by the extra 2.5" of latex in the Brooklyn's comfort layer.

Cover: Finally, the cotton cover of the Brooklyn would seem to make the mattress more breathable than the rayon/polyester of the Kiss.

The main point: So my questions for you, Phoenix, are have I sufficiently considered all of the factors you deem important in a mattress purchase given our PPP? Does the Brooklyn seem like the best choice for us? And is there anything I have overlooked or not sufficiently explored? If you could also give me some information about what ILDs I should be looking at in a mattress with differential construction given our situation, that would be much appreciated as well.

Thanks for this great site!

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Heyali replied the topic: Simplified Choice Mattresses aka Disruptors, Bed In A Box, One Choice Fits All,

25 Aug 2015 09:43

Hi again, Phoenix,

I just heard back from Brooklyn Bedding about the blend of their Talalay latex and this is the reply I received from Mario:
"Our talalay latex is blended with other organic materials to make up the other 60% synthetic materials for instance sand, ground seashells, etc."
To me, that sounds like there is only 40% (synthetic) latex in the top comfort layer which causes me significant concern. What are your thoughts about this?

Here are some additional specifications to add to your table above:
Soft (19ILD Talalay Layer, 30-32ILD Dunlop Layer)
Medium (28ILD Talalay Layer, 30-32ILD Dunlop Layer)
Firm (32ILD Talalay Layer, 32-34ILD Dunlop Layer)
Polyfoam core 2lb HD of about 36IFD
Does the IFD of the polyfoam core look high enough to support two large people?

Thanks again for any help.

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Phoenix replied the topic: Simplified Choice Mattresses aka Disruptors, Bed In A Box, One Choice Fits All,

25 Aug 2015 14:02

Hi Heyali,

PPP: I would like a mattress that will accommodate a 300-lb and a 180lb person (and two small dogs). We are getting to the point in our lives--late, late 40s--where we wake up achy, sleep poorly due to a combination of snoring, tossing and turning, menopause (sorry, if TMI!), and lifelong chronic insomnia. We are back, side and stomach sleepers and probably like medium support, though this is something that I cannot determine with certainty, since I've never really been sure what that means. We don't like the "dead feeling" of memory foam you describe, but some hugging is nice. Oh, and I think a hybrid/coil mattress is out of the question due to the anatomy of our staircase which has a hairpin turn, though if these types of mattresses are.flexible, coils might not be a deal-breaker. Having read the detailed information you've provided, it seems that the only two remotely plausible mattress choices for us are the Brooklyn Bedding and Kiss mattresses.


If you are in the 300 lb range then there is some information in post #3 here that would be helpful for those that are in higher weight ranges and I would agree that higher density and more durable materials would be a more important part of your choice.

Outside of durability issues ... the only way to know with any certainty whether any mattress will be a good match for you in term of PPP would be based on your own careful testing or personal experience but with a mattress that has a great trial and regurn policy then you can test the mattress in your bedroom instead of a showroom.

Pocket coil mattresses are generally flexible enough to bend around corners (and can be used on adjustable beds as well) although bending a mattress can be a bigger issue with mattresses that use linked coils.

Comfort layer: Since you say latex is basically superior in all ways to polyfoam, I don't know why we would even consider any of the others which lack latex in the comfort layer. Using the guidelines you've provided on your site, the Brooklyn Bedding mattress looks better because of the additional 2.5" of latex in the comfort layer which will accommodate a heavier person and be more durable in the long-term. The blended Talalay is also a plus, but I don't know whether the synthetic Dunlop layer comes with disadvantages. The 4lb density of the Kiss also gives me some pause given our weight. The ILD is not listed (in your blog or on Brooklyn's site), so I'm not sure how to evaluate that. In fact, I'm not entirely sure how to determine what ILD is best for us. You suggest a lower ILD for the comfort layer and a higher for the core, but I'm not sure what that means in terms of specifications. The Nest looked promising at first, but their site has no specifications listed nor is there any info about shipping and returns.


The choice between different materials is a preference and/or a budget choice and not a "better worse" choice. There are higher quality and more durable and lower quality and less durable versions of every foam material and as long as there are no weak links in a mattress relative to your body weight then any material or type of mattress that you prefer can make a good choice (see this article ). Different people can have very different preferences in the type and combinations of different materials or mattresses that they prefer and there is no better or worse or right or wrong when it comes to preferences.

There is more about the different types and blends of latex in post #6 here and there is also more about some of the differences between Dunlop and Talalay in post #7 here .

The 4 lb high performance hybrid polyfoam in the Kiss Mattress is a very high quality and durable material that would be suitable for your weight range (unlike 4 lb memory foam where I would be more cautious) although any mattress regardless of the type of material will have a shorter lifespan for those that are in your weight range.

ILD by itself is one of several specs that can affect the firmness of a single layer in a mattress and by itself has little meaning (see post #4 here ). Unless you have a great deal of knowledge and experience with different types of mattress materials and specs and different layering combinations and how they combine together and can translate them into your own "real life" experience that can be unique to you (which would only be a very small percentage of people) ... I would tend to avoid using individual specs such as layer thicknesses or ILD numbers or other complex combinations of specifications to try and predict how a mattress will feel or perform for you and focus more on your own actual testing and/or personal experience. When you try and choose a mattress based on complex combinations of specs that you don't fully understand or can't "translate" into your own personal experience then the most common outcome is information overload and "paralysis by analysis". While knowing the general properties of different materials and components or types of mattresses can be helpful ... choosing a mattress based on "comfort specs" specs (as opposed to durability specs) would be much too complex for most people.

Nest Bedding is completely transparent about the materials in their mattresses and lists all the specs that are important on their site (see this article ).

When you can't test a mattress in person then the most reliable source of guidance is always a more detailed conversation with a knowledgeable and experienced retailer or manufacturer that has your best interests at heart who can help "talk you through" the specifics of their mattresses 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 well on and liked that they are familiar with, any special considerations you may have, and the "averages" of other customers that are similar to you. They will know more about helping you to "match" their specific mattress designs or firmness options to different body types, sleeping positions, and preferences or even to other mattresses that they are familiar with than anyone else so that in combination with your own personal testing you can make the "best possible" choice with the highest chance of success.

Core: That brings us to the core of each mattress. The Kiss has an extra inch of polyfoam, though they both appear to use the same grade and density. You state that the first 5-6" are the most important in a mattress, so the additional inch in the Kiss seems outweighed by the extra 2.5" of latex in the Brooklyn's comfort layer.


The thickness of a mattress or of individual layers is really just a side effect of the design and by itself isn't particularly meaningful either (see post #2 here ) although higher weight ranges will sometimes do better with a mattress that is a little thicker than lower weight ranges but even this depends more on the specific design and combination of materials in the mattress than anything else.

The main point: So my questions for you, Phoenix, are have I sufficiently considered all of the factors you deem important in a mattress purchase given our PPP? Does the Brooklyn seem like the best choice for us? And is there anything I have overlooked or not sufficiently explored? If you could also give me some information about what ILDs I should be looking at in a mattress with differential construction given our situation, that would be much appreciated as well.


I think if anything you may be making this much more complex than it needs to be.

I don't make specific suggestions or recommendations 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 (Posture and alignment, Pressure relief, and Personal preferences) 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 if you can't test a mattress in person then your own personal sleeping experience (see post #2 here ).

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 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 or combination of materials is the best match for you based on all the parts of your personal value equation that are most important to you. I would be very skeptical of anyone who claims that they have some kind of crystal ball that can predict which specific mattress you will sleep best on with any certainty. It just doesn't exist.

I just heard back from Brooklyn Bedding about the blend of their Talalay latex and this is the reply I received from Mario:
"Our talalay latex is blended with other organic materials to make up the other 60% synthetic materials for instance sand, ground seashells, etc."
To me, that sounds like there is only 40% (synthetic) latex in the top comfort layer which causes me significant concern. What are your thoughts about this?



Again this may be much more complex than you need to know and certainly wouldn't help most people with their choices. Blended talalay latex made by Talalay Global (formerly Latex International) is a high quality material that is made with a combination of natural and synthetic rubber along with the compounding formula they use to foam and manufacture the latex itself into a product that you can sleep on. This includes foaming agents, curing agents, antidegradants, and other substances that are used to manufacture the latex and in the case of Talalay Global they also add some filler material as well (see post #16 here and post #4 here .). Unless you have a degree in materials sciene most of this type of information would also have little meaning as well.

Here are some additional specifications to add to your table above:
Soft (19ILD Talalay Layer, 30-32ILD Dunlop Layer)
Medium (28ILD Talalay Layer, 30-32ILD Dunlop Layer)
Firm (32ILD Talalay Layer, 32-34ILD Dunlop Layer)
Polyfoam core 2lb HD of about 36IFD
Does the IFD of the polyfoam core look high enough to support two large people?


I don't list "comfort specs" in the descriptions because they would be meaningless for most people and can end up being more misleading than helpful.

Again ... when you can't test a mattress in person then the most reliable source of guidance will be a conversation with a knowledgeable retailer or manufacturer but the only way to know for certain will be based on your own personal experience which is why having a good exchange/return policy can be more important with an online purchase.

Phoenix


Researching for a mattress?... Be sure to read this post first.
Last Edit: 26 Aug 2015 14:00 by Phoenix.

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getoffamycloud replied the topic: Simplified Choice Mattresses aka Disruptors, Bed In A Box, One Choice Fits All,

06 Sep 2015 16:29

Just ordered a Tuft&Needle, really hoping it will work out!

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Phoenix replied the topic: Simplified Choice Mattresses aka Disruptors, Bed In A Box, One Choice Fits All,

06 Sep 2015 16:37

Hi getoffamycloud,

Congratulations on your new mattress :)

I'm looking forward to finding out how you like it once you've received it and have had the chance to try it out for a bit.

Phoenix


Researching for a mattress?... Be sure to read this post first.

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