How to Buy a Mattress

Mattress quality is difficult to judge in the showroom, so do your product research before you visit one. Here are some basic guidelines. As a general rule, it’s best to buy the highest-quality set you can afford.

Foam Cushioning

High quality latex foam cushioning is longer lasting (loses resiliency slower) than polyurethane foam cushioning.

Springs and Thickness

Extra-thick mattresses require extra-long coil springs–not simply short springs that have been stretched. Otherwise your mattress will lose resiliency quickly. Compare spring samples before you buy. Often the number of springs in a mattress is an indication of quality, but not always. Nor is thick mattress padding an indicator of durability.

Mattress Size

If you sleep with a partner, opt for a king- or queen-size set to allow each sleeper extra space and so weight is not concentrated in the center of the mattress, where it can cause wear to the coil springs.

Tip: Never use a new mattress with an old box-spring. Mattress-and-box-spring sets are designed to work in unison (the springs align), which adds life to your mattress and ensures maximum comfort. In fact, experts claim that using a mattress with a mismatched box spring can reduce its life by 50 percent. It may also void the mattress warranty.

Plus: 4 Secrets to Make Your Mattress Last Longer

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