Don't Judge A Mattress By Its Cover...
Avoid These Two Common Mattress-Shopping Mistakes
“You can’t tell anything by trying out a mattress for 20 seconds.”
The job of a good comfort consultant (you’ll notice I didn’t say “salesperson”) in any mattress store is to be a little nosey and ask quite a few questions about your sleeping styles, personal preferences, pre-existing conditions, durability needs and any other considerations/curiosities that you may have, and then take that information and in effect “pre-qualify” and funnel down the options they have on the floor to a select few that should suit your specific demands. Then you get to do all of the hard work and test out these items, and based upon your feedback the comfort consultant can then refine their suggestions.
This should quickly become a comparison of only two items at a time (just like the eye doctor), where the loser is eliminated from consideration and the new champion is compared to the next item. Spend a few minutes (or more) on each item, and if the mattress uses memory foam, be sure to spend enough time on it that your body heat activates the viscous nature of the memory foam so that you have a better feel of the comfort of the mattress when it’s in use.
Taking the time to first speak with an educated comfort consultant and then testing out a narrowed-scope of items in a logical fashion will tell more than not testing out an item at all, and it will certainly tell you more than bouncing around on 30 different mattresses 20-seconds at a time.
I’m a car guy, so the analogy I like to use is that you wouldn’t purchase a new car without knowing about the engine it has, the type of transmission, the features, the type of interior, and so on. You shouldn’t buy a mattress without knowing about everything that is one the inside, especially since this product can have a dramatic impact upon your health and restoration.
With polyurethane and memory foams, durability and polymer density are almost directly correlated. The higher the density, the more durable and the more consistent the resulting comfort life of any mattress. With polyurethane foam, density and hardness aren’t necessarily related (it’s the same for memory foam, but most memory foam is soft). So just because a mattress feels hard in a showroom doesn’t mean that the foam is a higher quality, higher density foam.
An example I like to use is comparing a firm piece of low density foam to a stale piece of bread. The stale piece of bread will feel quite stiff at first, but then when you press on it a bit you’ll quickly break through that thin hard surface into the softer center. The same holds true with firm lower density foam, as it will begin to take a set quickly and lose its surface firmness. So the rule is not to solely judge a mattress by the initial comfort of a product.
In the end, you’ll want to combine your impressions of comfort along with finding something using good quality materials, and then you can be best assured of a product that will provide you a consistent comfort life.
The Beducator™, Jeff Scheuer