In this article I’m going to talk about one of the most important factors in determining if it’s a quality mattress and that is less is more!
When you’re looking for a new mattress, mattress shopping can be tough because you don’t know if it’s a quality mattress.
What makes it a good mattress?
You see some mattresses that are $4000, some mattresses are $2000 dollars and some are $500.
So why is it a good mattress?
What I found is there are two main factors that will determine if it’s a quality mattress.
The first one is the materials that are being used.
Are they good quality materials that are going to hold up? That’s a very important part in determining if it’s a quality mattress.
But also just as important is the way it’s constructed.
This is what I’m going to talk about.
Why less is more when it comes to mattress construction.
If you’ve done any mattress shopping, especially if you go into the one of the mainstream stores, you’re gonna see mattresses that are very expensive, the so called luxury mattresses.
Usually the more expensive mattresses are going to be the thicker mattresses.
The reason why you’re going to see these thicker mattresses is a lot of it is marketing.
We as humans a lot of times buy with our eyes.
So if you see a 15 or 17 inch mattress next to 8 or 10 inch mattress, side by side, you automatically assume that thicker mattress is a better mattress.
However that’s not always the case!
Especially when the sales person starts describing the mattress or you see on the website the ingredients of the mattress, you see all these layers with fancy names on it, so you think it’s a better mattress.
But I’m going to say that most of the time, stay away from those.
There are three parts to a mattress:
- the support layer
- the comfort layer
- the cover
Usually the cover can be either quilted or not quilted, but all those three part are going to affect the feel and the support and the comfort of the mattress.
These thicker mattresses usually have a lot of layers. There’s a lot of comfort layers.
The support layer is where most of the mattress support is going to come from. This could be springs, this could be foam, this could be latex.
This can be different, but mostly it’s gonna be springs.
Most springs are gonna be about eight inches thick or eight inches tall. Some are six inches, but usually they’re around eight inches.
When you see these mattresses that are 15 or 17 inch thick, that means you have a lot of cushion onto that mattress, onto the top of the support layer.
The problem with that is that most of the support is supposed to come from the support layer, but when you have so many layers on the mattress, the support layer is not supporting you.
You’re so far away from the support layer that the comfort layer is supporting you. I see this all the time.
I saw a mattress that was about 17 inches thick and it was only a few years old and already had a big dip in it and it was a very expensive mattress.
So there are two main reasons why a really thick mattress is not a good idea.
The first one is because of the support. When you have a super thick mattress with a lot of layers on it, you’re not going to get the benefit of the support layer, at least not as much.
A lot of these thicker mattresses might have an amazing feel, they might feel great initially, but over time the comfort layer tends to break down.
If you’re getting most of your support from the comfort layer, over time it is going to start breaking down and then you start getting that dip.
These expensive mattresses, after about a year or two, don’t feel exactly like they did on the showroom floor and then the customer ends up with a very expensive but mediocre comfort level mattress.
The second part on why you don’t want to go too thick or have too many layers on a mattress is because a mattress is only as good as the weakest link.
We can have the best layers in there, the best material, the best latex in there, but with a lot of different comfort layers, it just opens yourself up for the mattress to break down quicker, because all it takes is one of these layers to start being affected and start to break down.
Then it all trickles up, it affects everything else, which eventually affects your back.
So when there are more layers in the bed, there’s just more that could go wrong in the mattress.
That is why I say less is more when it comes to mattress construction.
One or two good quality layers are recommended, rather than a bunch of little layers.
I see this type of construction happen quite a bit, especially on some of these more expensive mattresses. You’ll have different levels of convoluted foam or memory foam, poly foam, different densities.
But like I said, all it takes is one of these layers to start going bad and then the whole mattress is affected and then you get the dip a lot quicker.
What I recommend when looking for a new mattress, in regards to constructing a mattress, is going to be more minimal.
What some companies are doing when making mattress that will last?
When it comes to looking for mattress construction, determining if it’s a good mattress, find one with a good quality layer, such as natural latex.
Two main reasons why people choose latex are: it is more durable, it does last about two to four times longer than polyurethane, but also it’s natural, it doesn’t have any of the chemicals that are going to off gas.
Because of the durability, latex hold up quite a bit longer. Also you’re close to the support layer, you’re still getting the benefit of the support layer, it supports you. But you’re also getting the comfort and the pressure relief on the top layer.
The advantage of going with this is there’s just not a lot that could go wrong with the mattress, because a better quality material is used and there’s just one layer in there.
There’s not a whole lot to go wrong. You’re still going to get the comfort, you still could get the pressure relief, without having all these sorts of different layers and risking it dipping a lot quicker.
That’s why latex mattresses have 20 year warranties on them.
So I do recommend going with something that’s more minimal.
Alex P. Davis has a BA in Interior Design from The New York School of Interior Design and 10 years of experience expertly designing sophisticated interiors.