On Mattresses

I consider a comfortable mattress, in most cases, to be necessary but not sufficient for good sleep.  The definition of comfortable clearly varies by person and, over time, within-person.

I went to purchase a new mattress recently.  I worked with Melissa at Jordan Furniture.  I received a small discount for discussing Jordan’s mattress selection process in my blog.  As best I can, though, I will provide a balanced assessment of Jordan’s process, sprinkled with my own opinions.

Jordan’s has a “sleep lab” with salespeople dressed in white coats playing “sleep technicians.”  Having some experience in sleep labs,  I found such clinical emulation entertaining.  Also, I tried a memory foam mattress.  Frankly, I am impressed by people accustomed to spring mattresses who have the courage to transition to memory foam mattresses.   Lying down on foam is unique, and I’d recommend spending a night on the foam before buying.  Coincidentally, we have foam mattresses in our sleep labs.  

Melissa Mullen, District Bedding Manager at Jordan’s, and I first assessed my “pressure points” on a pressure-sensitive mattress.  I apparently distribute most but not all of my weight on my shoulders and hips.  Based on my “pressure profile” I required a small to moderate amount of coil density but a firm mattress.  We tried several mattresses, but I preferred the very first mattress that Melissa selected for me, a firm coil mattress with a slight pillow top.

The process of buying a mattress was surprisingly pleasant.  I lay down and bounced on several mattresses.  Melissa did not tell me the price of the mattresses initially.  My preferred mattress turned out to be quite inexpensive.  Had I known prices, I likely would have been biased toward a pricier model.   So, I appreciated not knowing prices.  Given that I preferred the first model, I believe that Jordan’s sleep folks have developed some wisdom matching customers to mattresses over time.  However, I agree with Jordan’s claim that the qualities that initially attract customers to mattresses in the showroom may not match those qualities that make a mattress appropriate in the long-term.  So, I will update this blog once I have used my mattress for a month or so.  As another caveat, Jordan’s emphasizes “spinal alignment,” an intuitively appealing principle endorsed by chiropractors and osteopathic physicians for which there is minimal scientific data.   

And now I present the adult portion of this blog.  Like sleep, sex is a different experience when indulged upon a foam mattress.  If sex is a priority for you, you might want to demo your moves on a foam mattress before buying, but not in our sleep lab please.  Get a (hotel) room!