If you crave a good night’s sleep, then it’s essential you find the right mattress for your bed. After all, we spend roughly a third of our entire lives sleeping, and our health, happiness and wellbeing largely depend on it.
A lumpy, unsupportive mattress can play havoc with your back, leading to restless nights, aching joints and daytime fatigue. This is why It’s so imperative to research the different types of mattress before you purchase such an important item.
Here at Bedznextday, we know all there is to know about mattresses. We stock a wide range of mattress sizes and types – whether you need a memory foam single mattress, an orthopaedic double mattress, a gel-encapsulated small double mattress, or a pocket sprung king size mattress, we have a huge selection to choose from.
How to choose a mattress?
When choosing a mattress, the first thing you need to consider is the size. If you already have a bed base, and you don’t want to change it, then you will already know whether you need a single bed mattress, a double bed mattress, a three-quarter bed mattress, or a king size mattress.
However, if you are purchasing an entire bed base with mattress from scratch, then you will want to make sure you choose the right size for your needs. For example, you may be single right now, but what happens when you meet your potential life partner? A single bed might be a bit too cosy for comfort.
Even if you’re sure you’re never going to want to share your bed, there may be other reasons to consider a larger bed than a single. For example, people with disabilities often need bigger beds, as can people who move about a lot in their sleep due to back pain or other health issues.
Another factor you will need to consider is the space you have available. For example, if you would really like a double bed, but only have a very small bedroom, then a three-quarter size bed may be just the answer for you.
Finally, and very importantly, you will need to work out the budget you have available before searching for your perfect mattress. As mattresses can cost anything from a few hundred pounds to thousands of pounds, it’s best to have a price range in mind beforehand, so that you can quickly weed out any that aren’t affordable and avoid wasting precious time.
OK, so once you have set your budget, considered the space you have available, decided on the size of bed you need, and chosen a bed base, the next thing to consider is the type of mattress you need. Read on to find out about the main types of mattresses available to you.
What are the different types of mattress?
There’s a huge range of mattresses on the market these days, and the number of potential options and combinations can seem overwhelming. To help you decide, here is a brief summary of the most popular mattress types currently available.
Open spring mattress (also known as open coil or continuous coil mattresses)
This type of mattress basically contains one very long piece of metal wire, coiled into multiple springs. A border rod provides structure and maintains the shape. Open spring mattresses tend to be lighter than other mattresses, making them easier to move and turn. The sides of the mattress are usually machine stitched.
This is the least supportive type of mattress, which means that many people choose them for guest bedrooms or other occasional use scenarios, rather than for everyday use adult beds. If you’re on a very tight budget, then the open spring mattress tends to be the least expensive option.
Pocket spring mattress
The pocket spring mattress offers a step up from the open spring mattress. These mattresses are made from individual small springs, each of which is contained within its own pocket of fabric.
Each spring moves independently of all the others, which makes it more supportive than the open coil type. This also means that it is ideal for couples who sleep in the same bed, since the separate springs are more able to cater for different weights and sleeping positions, and can also prevent sleepers from rolling towards each other.
Pocket sprung mattresses are more breathable than memory foam or latex mattresses. However, they can sometimes contain natural materials that tend to trigger existing allergies, such as lambswool. They are also heavy to move and turn, so you’ll need to bear this in mind if you live alone and have trouble lifting heavy objects.
Memory foam mattress
A more modern type of mattress, the memory foam mattress offers hypo-allergenic properties, whilst also responding to temperature and weight. These mattresses mould themselves to the shape of your body, to absorb your weight and take pressure off your joints.
This makes them a good option for people who suffer with back pain or arthritis, as they can align the spine and help sleepers to maintain their posture more easily.
The materials memory foam mattresses are made from are not so breathable, however. This means that they tend to retain heat, which is perhaps not so good during very hot summer weather.
Similar to the memory foam mattress, but made from latex foam which is a more breathable material, latex mattresses are a good option for allergy sufferers, as well as those who tend to overheat in bed. People who prefer firm mattresses should get on well with most latex mattresses too, as they are dense and offer solid support.
Latex mattresses are very hardwearing and should last for many years, but they are also very heavy, and can be difficult to turn. They can be prone to developing dents and lumps over time, too.
As the name suggests, this type of mattress combines materials such as memory foam, latex and pocket springs, for a perfectly balanced sleep. Hybrid mattresses offer both comfort and support with the combination of a pocket sprung base and a memory foam or latex top layer.
With all the benefits of the memory foam mattress, the ice-gel-encapsulated mattress goes a step further by solving the problem of overheating. The open channels around the cooling gel top allows the mattress to breathe, whilst the mattress still gently conforms to your body shape.
The orthopaedic mattress refers to the firmness of the mattress, rather than being a particular type of mattress (see next section). Orthopaedic mattresses can contain open coils, pocket springs, memory foam, latex or gel.
Which mattress firmness should I choose?
The very best mattresses offer the perfect combination of comfort, support and firmness for your specific needs and preferences. When it comes to firmness in particular, there is a lot of confusion out there. Generally, how firm your mattress needs to be will depend on your sleeping position, weight and height, as well as any specific health issues you may have. Here are a few pointers.
best for side-sleepers and people who change position in their sleep.
best for people who change position in their sleep, but who need a little more support.
best for people who sleep on their back, particularly those who require extra lower-back support.
best for people who sleep on their front, those who weigh more than 15 stone, and/or people with back pain. If you’re specifically looking for a mattress for back pain, it is generally acknowledged that a firmer mattress is better. However, the type of mattress you need will also depend on your weight. As a rule of thumb, the heavier you are, the firmer your mattress should be. It is also best to look for a mattress that will keep your spine aligned as you sleep, and prevent rolling. Don’t forget that your pillow also has a large part to play, as this will also greatly affect your sleeping position.
How do I buy a mattress online?
Buying your next mattress online couldn’t be easier. Simply read our guide above to work out the size and type of mattress you require, then use the filtering options and browse the range on our website for suitable mattresses in your price range.
How to clean a mattress
Our mattress will harbour dead skin cells, sweat, dust mites and hair, so it is important to clean it regularly, particularly if you have allergies or allow pets to sleep on the bed.
It is best to clean your mattress while your bed sheets are being washed (washing cotton sheets on a high temperature will kill dust mites and any unfriendly bacteria) so that you’re not placing them back on top of your freshly cleaned mattress.
Once your sheets are in the washing machine, you should attach the brush attachment to your vacuum cleaner, and clean the surface of your mattress. Be sure to pay close attention to the seams around the edges and any crevices around sunken buttons.
After hoovering, spot clean any stains with an enzyme-based cleaner or the foam from equal parts washing-up liquid and water. This works particularly well for stains caused by bodily fluids. Take care not to get the mattress too wet though – dabbing and blotting repeatedly with a clean cloth should suffice.
Then sprinkle a little baking soda all over the surface of the mattress, and leave for several hours if possible before vacuuming once again. The baking soda will absorb any excess moisture and odours, whilst also neutralising any acids.
Finally, flip your mattress over and repeat the cleaning process above for a thorough deep clean.
How often should I change my mattress?
The general view is that you should change your mattress every 8-10 years. This is because over time your mattress may begin to sag, and it may also develop lumps and dents, resulting in an unbalanced sleep. Not to mention that mattresses accumulate an enormous amount of debris over the years, which can become a health hazard in time.
How to dispose of a mattress
There are a few potential ways to dispose of a mattress. If you own a van or a trailer (or you have a friend who does), then the easiest and least expensive way is to take it to your nearest tip or recycling centre yourself. If this isn’t possible, then you could hire somebody to do this for you, for a small fee.
Alternatively, you can arrange for your local council’s bulk waste department to collect the mattress – this usually costs around £50 (although the price will vary depending on your local authority). This is probably only worth the cost if you also have other bulky items to dispose of at the same time.
If your mattress is still in good condition, you could consider donating it to a local charity shop. Some of them are willing to collect large or heavy items. Or, you could list your mattress on a site such as Freecycle, and give it away for free to anyone who is willing to come and collect it.
Finally, if you are decluttering on a larger scale and you intend to hire a skip, you can toss out your old mattress this way.