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    • california_born

      I wake up with lower back pain every morning. It's time to bite the bullet and purchase a new bed.

      How do I find a good mattress? Mattress shopping isn't my thing. I want to find something highly rated online and get it delivered, but I don't know where to start. There are so many options. Many brands have great marketing, but I have no idea how to assess if their mattresses will actually improve my quality of sleep.

    • wx

      Gosh, I have to say that buying a bed blind might not be a great idea. Finding the right level of firmness for you is something best done in person, in my opinion. They vary a lot.

      Of course, in-person shopping doesn't always work either. I, too, had a sore back and bought the firmest mattress I could. Before long I had to put a layer of foam rubber between the mattress cover and the mattress, it was too firm!

      Also, FWIW, sleeping on your side (sometimes with a pillow between your legs) can help a tender back.

      Anyway, I think a mattress is the kind of thing you really might want to bestir yourself for.

    • RussP

      When staying in hotels if you find something that has given you a great nights sleep strip the bed in the morning to see the brand.

      We have been through 2 expensive mattresses in recent years one had a pillow top and was way to hot in summer although reasonably comfortable.

      The other was a two cell air adjustable one, and that was terrible you would set it for a comfort level then during a hot or cold night the air in the chamber would either expand or contract due to temp and end up either too hard or too soft.

      We are now on a new cheaper one and turn it and flip it weekly with the idea that we will change it every 2 years rather than every 5 or more that we would hope to get out of an expensive one.

      But as stated above it's a very personal thing and best to try it first.

      Some companies in Australia will do a 100 day exchange if not satisfied, I'm not sure what they do with the returns  😱

    • yaypie

      For mattresses and anything else related to sleeping, Sleep Like the Dead is an incredible resource. I've bought mattresses, pillows, and sleep masks based on their reviews and so far I haven't been disappointed.

      One thing I'd recommend: stay away from mattress stores. They're full of slimy salespeople and questionable products and incomprehensible pricing.

      I know it seems scary buying a big thing like a mattress online without trying it first, but if you buy from Casper, Purple, Costco, or other big online brands that sell mattresses, they all offer trial periods with free returns (they'll come pick up the mattress and haul it away if you decide you hate it).

      I've bought mattresses online from Costco and Casper, and in both cases I liked them and didn't need to return them, but I liked knowing that I could.

    • california_born

      How did you like your Casper? Their marketing is wonderful with their assurance through their 100-night guarantee and their great user reviews. But looking at actual reviews across the web, people's feelings are mixed. There's an abundance of people that claim they wake up with lower back pain months after getting the Casper.

      Sleep Like the Dead is very useful. Thanks for the pointer. Previously I was looking at Sleepopolis, but I was concerned their affiliation with mattress companies leads to a positive bias towards those companies:

      We have an affiliate relationship with some companies where we get percentage of sales if you click over from our site. Also, Casper provided financial support to allow JAKK Media (our company) to acquire Sleepopolis. See our full disclosures here.

    • yaypie

      The Casper is actually in our second bedroom. @Felicity sleeps on it sometimes when I'm snoring or having trouble getting to sleep (I'm a super light sleeper and sometimes I just can't get to sleep with someone else next to me) but I haven't slept on it.

      She has mentioned that it's softer than our main mattress, which is a nice memory foam mattress we bought online from Costco many years ago (a Sleep Science Ara 13" King, though they don't seem to sell the same model anymore so I don't have a link for you).

    • california_born

      When staying in hotels if you find something that has given you a great nights sleep strip the bed in the morning to see the brand.

      Ah, good idea!

      we will change it every 2 years rather than every 5 or more that we would hope to get out of an expensive one.

      I currently have a sleep Sleep Number bed. It was more expensive than most of the memory foam mattresses. I doubt it's better than the cheaper mattresses. It's a glorified airbed with a thin layer of foam between the air baffles and the surface. That foam has lost its stiffness after only five years, and they won't replace it, even with their 25-year warranty. So I think I'll operate under the same philosophy which is to buy more affordable beds more often.

    • california_born

      Yeah, I've been eying Tuft and Needle as well. How's it do cooling wise?

      I have to imagine that a lot of brands are getting their foam from the same factory. So it's hard to distinguish good marketing from actual facts of the material.

    • spongey

      I have the Casper Wave mattress and it's easily one of the most comfy beds I've ever owned. Since it's memory foam, the dogs moving around on the bottom of the bed doesn't shake the entire bed at night, which is great.

      Also, as @yaypie mentioned above, they have a great return policy after a trial period. Plus, you can get it white glove delivered and set up (not that it's too difficult to take it out of a box and wait).

      Anyway, highly recommend checking out Casper!

    • california_born

      For me, mattress shopping is harder than buying a house!

      Thanks for the link. I had no idea there's such a big affiliate market! Shame on both Casper and the review sites for biased reviews. Seems like sleeplikethedead.com is legit, but they also use affiliate marketing through Amazon links, which is still a financial incentive for bias.

    • Chris
      Chris MacAskill

      I'm with wxwax: we went to the mattress stores, chose one that was too firm because we didn't lie on it long enough, and then had to buy a foam layer for it. However, with the foam layer, we ended up liking it.

      What about Purple mattresses? They are killing it with their YouTube videos. 166 million views so far for this one, and it's pretty funny:

    • california_born

      So I did a ton more research guided by the information you all gave me. Thank you 🙏

      I just pulled the trigger. I'm getting a The Casper King from Casper through Costco Online. It was $800 on Costco as opposed to $1200 on Amazon/Casper direct. The best part: the return policy. Say it sags in a year, like some report, I'm still able to return it. And I can bring it down to Costco in person. No need to painfully compress it into a box. Casper's 100-night guarantee is limited to just that: 100 days.

      I was indifferent about the brand. It's almost a toss-up between Purple, Leesa, and Casper, but the Casper was the only one hundreds of dollars off through Costco. They all have nearly identical foams, so it's all about branding. I would have bought the Leesa if it were $800, because the WireCutter (which has never led me astray) claims that it's slightly more supportive for stomach sleepers like myself.

      I almost went for a Zinus memory foam 12" mattress because the credible reviews were better that more expensive mattresses, it's a fraction of the price at $352 (king), and Sleep Like the Dead had decent reviews. But I became skeptical because its 21k 4.2-star average Amazon reviews apply to all product variants: 4 thicknesses and 8 sizes. People could be reviewing a mattress that their kid sleeps on. And a lot of reviews are for the thin 6" mattresses that go in college dorms and vacation rentals.

    • california_born

      It's here, nine days later, which is okay by me because I saved $400 going through Costco online. I can tell beautiful packing matters to Casper's brand, but it looks like it's been through hell. Dragging it upstairs alone was a pain because the package is 113 lbs.

      I need to get a king bed frame now because I upgraded from a queen. Soon I will unpack and give my opinions on the quality of the mattress.

    • california_born

      After a few weeks of sleeping on the Casper, I'll give you my thoughts.

      I'm a side sleeper and sometimes a stomach sleeper. My biggest complaint is that my spine seems to sag in my lower back region because it's quite soft. The top layer of foam is very low in density so I sink in a couple inches. They advertise it as a "medium-firm" mattress, but it's not. I wake up with more severe back pain on the Casper than my old mattress.

      The second big complaint is that I overheat because of that sinkage into the first layer of memory foam. Half of my body is enclosed. It feels like I have a down comforter wrapped around me.

      I'm going to return the bed, and look for something else. The back pain alone is a dealbreaker. It's comfy though. There are no hotspots. Other than the back pain, I wake up feeling like I slept on a cloud.

    • bstrong

      Given your latest thoughts, I think you should try a mattress from Tuft and Needle. When I was in the market and did some research, the reviews all said T&N was firmer than Casper. I have one and it doesn't give me that sinked-in, clingy feeling that many foam mattresses do. To me it's the perfect balance. Firm and supportive, yet just soft enough to make it comfortable.

    You've been invited!