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Coming from a waterbed 21 May 2018 12:59 #1

For about the past 20 years I have been sleeping on a fiber filled motionless waterbed. The seam sprung a leak and I have decided it is time to go for a more normal matress. After so long on water everything feels different to me. When visiting local stores I tend toward the hybrids but they get pricey fast.

Any suggestions as to what would be a good replacement for the waterbed? I normally sleep on my side an have shoulders, back, hip, and knee issues (all on the right so I lay on my left).

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Coming from a waterbed 22 May 2018 11:18 #2

Hi Crash55,

Thanks for posting this question on The Mattress Underground site.
You have a challenge ahead, because your body is definitely conditioned for sleep on that malleable waterbed surface. I have to assume that during the past 20 years you slept on other beds while on vacation or visiting family; so you know you are going to be able to get healthy sleep on a new mattress. You just need to find what will work for you!

I normally sleep on my side and have shoulders, back, hip, and knee issues (all on the right so I lay on my left).

Based on your sleep style, I recommend you start your search with a Pocketed Coil mattress.
These are the mattresses that have individually wrapped coils that move independently of each other, and are meant for side sleepers.
Please read this article to help you understand the different choices and why each is so important.
When you visit a mattress showroom, the Retail Sales Associate will be able to see what type of spring is the correct support for you. You will also find mattresses made using Offset springs. These are connected springs that provide, what I call predictable support, and can be great for people with back issues. Based on you being a side sleeper, chances are this spring may not provide enough movement for your shoulder and hip. The RSA can definitely help you with this. The final category would be springless mattresses, and include beds like Temperpedic and Latex mattresses. You will also run into mattresses people are calling hybrids, but this is just combining springs and latex and memory foams together into one mattress read this example for a comparison using an innerspring and Latex.

Coming from a waterbed, which has a different feel than any conventional mattresses, you need to understand your body needs and preferences and take a little more time adjusting to any new mattress you may chose. Then as time moves on you’ll lose more of your previous “learned alignment”. You will also want to select a product that has a good return policy in case it doesn’t meet your comfort needs.

I hope you have looked over these very important articles: #1 #2 #3 as these are a great place to start your research.

You have a big job ahead of you, and please see this article for points you may not have considered.

I wish you great success in your search for a wonderful mattress that will provide years of healthy sleep.

Debbie Lewis
Parklane Mattresses
parklanemattresses.com and Parklane Expert Profile
Researching for a mattress?... read The Mattress Shopping Tutorial.
TMU Discount Codes if purchasing from Trusted Members

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Coming from a waterbed 22 May 2018 20:23 #3

I tried a sleep mapper at a local store and they said I needed a two (1 firmest, 4 softest). They had me try Tempur-Pedic hybrid (med-firm), Sealy Hybrid (Kelburn), and Sterns & Foster Oak Terrace (cushion firm or luxury plush). At a different store I tried an Aireloom Oakmont (plush).

They all felt good though I think the Tempurpedic and Airelooom were in the lead. They were also hideously expensive. The Sterns luxury plush and Sealy were close and much cheaper.

I was wondering about the online beds like Nectar or similar.

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Coming from a waterbed 22 May 2018 20:29 #4

When visiting my parents I sleep on an extremely firm mattress or a pillow top. I prefer the pillow top. I am currently at Hyatt on travel and find the bed rather firm.

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Coming from a waterbed 25 May 2018 14:56 #5

Hi Crash55,

I am not surprised that you have had better experiences on the softer beds you have slept on, as that would be more what your body is comfortable with.
Phoenix had a very good POST here talking about National Brands that you should look over.

I tried a sleep mapper at a local store and they said I needed a two (1 firmest, 4 softest).


One of the TMU posts says this about a Sleep Mapper:
I wouldn't use or trust any kind of "automated" firmness selector or "theory" as anything more than a general guideline that is subject to change based on your own unique preferences and circumstances. There are only two ways to make effective initial choices for the design of a mattress that is the best match for you. One is with your own careful and objective testing and the other would be through more detailed conversations on the phone where you can provide them with more information that can help them use "averages" and your own past experiences as a way to help you make the best choice.

They all felt good though I think the Tempurpedic and Airelooom were in the lead. They were also hideously expensive. The Sterns luxury plush and Sealy were close and much cheaper.



The major brands such as Sealy/Stearns & Foster, Simmons, and Serta all tend to use lower quality and less durable materials in their mattresses than most of their smaller competitors that will tend to soften or break down prematurely relative to the price you pay which is why I would generally suggest avoiding all of them completely (along with the major retailers that focus on them as well) regardless of how they may feel in a showroom along with any mattress where you aren't able to find out the type and quality/durability of the materials inside it (see the guidelines here along with post #3 here and post #12 here and post #404 here ).

They all felt good though I think the Tempurpedic and Airelooom were in the lead. They were also hideously expensive. The Sterns luxury plush and Sealy were close and much cheaper.


An Aireloom can look great on the outside ... and can feel good in a showroom for those who tend to choose a mattress based on the "showroom feel" instead of more careful and objective testing using the testing guidelines in the tutorial post ... but they may not be as good a choice based on the quality of the materials inside the mattress.
If you’re able to find out the complete specifications and post those specifications here, I’ll be happy to comment upon them for you. The Aireloom web site does not provide specific meaningful information regarding this mattress.

I was wondering about the online beds like Nectar or similar.


The Nectar uses a 1” of 4 lb gel memory foam, a 3-inch 3.5 lb memory foam layer, and finally a 2.2 lb polyfoam core. They don’t list the thickness of the polyfoam core, or the thickness of the quilted gel memory foam panel or the density of that material. The polyfoam core uses a good density foam, but I would use caution with the 3” of 3.5 lb. memory foam on top of the core, as that is lower than I would recommend Durability Guidelines . They are a product assembled in the USA of components sourced from China and the US. They do not specify what is from where. I would caution against purchasing this item before knowing the complete specifications and component origins. I would read post #6 here about mattresses and materials imported from Asia or China and which may have been compressed for long periods of time in either shipping or storage before being purchased and being sourced in China would make this somewhat of a risky purchase IMO. Additionally, I’ve heard from people within the industry of some fulfillment issues with Nectar, but this may be addressed by now.

Mattress shopping has to be approached as a project with the end result being you have the bed of your dreams, because you are dreaming through the night.

I wish you much success in your journey, it is worth the time you are investing.

Debbie Lewis
Parklane Mattresses
parklanemattresses.com and Parklane Expert Profile
Researching for a mattress?... read The Mattress Shopping Tutorial.
TMU Discount Codes if purchasing from Trusted Members

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