By Brent Fairbanks
Starting your mattress shopping experience can be intimidating, frustrating, and overwhelming. Walking into your neighborhood mattress retailer would have you believe that a quality mattress will cost you two, three, or four thousand plus dollars. So what’s the good news? That’s simply not true!
As our team at Sleep Researcher started to dig into the world of sleep, we set out to understand why mattresses are so darn expensive. We’ve visited dozens of mattress stores, tried hundreds of mattresses, and even cut up beds to understand what was inside of them. After speaking to salespeople, manufacturers, and suppliers we uncovered a secret - there was nothing special about these more expensive mattresses that justified their sky high price tags.
“Retailers just dictate to their suppliers what price they want to charge, which results in mattresses that are absurdly expensive and made with materials that sound fancy, but serve no physical purpose.”
Jerry Lin, CoFounder at Helix
The quality of the materials used in the mattress is critical for your comfort, and also for the longevity of the mattress. More budget priced mattresses often skimp on quality, which can lead to a bed that feels comfortable initially, but wears and sinks over time. The key things to look for are indicators that the materials are high quality.
After substantial research, our team has found that there is typically a fairly direct increase in quality as price increases, but only up to roughly the $1,000 price point for a queen size mattress.
Up to around $1,000, brands use higher quality materials that improve the durability and comfort of your mattress, but typically beyond that point they are just charging you more for the same materials. Often, they claim to be adding on extra features that sound nice, but in practice aren't adding much to your sleep quality.
Ultimately, mattress price will be a function of your budget, what types of materials you are interested in, and how long you would like your mattress to last. But before you pay big bucks for big brand mattress at retail, it’s worth taking another look to make sure you’re getting your money’s worth.
At Sleep Researcher, we've tested out several of the top mattress brands at retail and online, and our favorite pick is Helix. We love them because they offer a Sleep Quiz that matches you to your ideal mattress match, their mattresses use hybrid foam and spring technology, and they offer free shipping and 100 night returns. A queen size starts at $995, and they are currently running a promotion for $75 off of any mattress size.