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Would you spend a lot of money on a mattress?

A good night's sleep

Did you know that in your lifetime you spend 200,000 hours in bed? It’s important to find the right mattress for you, but how much would you be willing to spend on a good night’s sleep?

To me, knowing that you’re going to spend so much of your life lying on your mattress means it’s worth spending more to get the best for you.

When it comes to bedroom buys, whether a mattress or pillow, I know that a lot of my friends have simply gone for the best bargain, rather than what will suit their body.

But to me, price isn’t such a strong consideration. A good night’s sleep is what really matters most to me, and getting the best mattress for you can make such a difference.

The mattress minefield

Mattresses are a bit of a minefield, however. Do you go for pocket sprung, memory foam, open sprung, latex or foam? Plus, some mattresses combine more than one type, such as pocket sprung with a memory foam topping. So what do all of the types mean for you and getting a good night’s sleep?

Even though my dad used to own a bed linen company, I wasn’t fully clued up on mattresses until I filmed our how to buy a mattress video.

So now I know what type would suit me best, and I’m armed with the right information to head to the shops and try some mattresses out. Don’t forget that actually lying and turning on some mattresses is key to choosing the right one. But the next question is, how much should I spend? Seeing as so much time will be spent snuggled on my mattress, it’s surely well worth forking out to get the best.

Best doesn’t have to mean pricey

However, looking at our latest mattress reviews from our lab, it seems the best ones don’t always come at a high price. But your chosen ideal mattress type could impact on this – the price for a Best Buy pocket sprung and Best Buy memory foam do differ by about £300, for example.

Generally speaking, pocket sprung and memory foam are more expensive than open sprung mattresses. But with open sprung you’re more likely to feel your partner turn in the night and are also more likely to wear out faster than other types. So I guess it’s a balance between what you know is best for you and what makes a great mattress at a great price.

But would you like to spend a lot on a mattress? Or are you happy to get the one that’s the cheapest, no matter the type?

What type of mattress do you sleep on?

Pocket sprung (54%, 234 Votes)

Memory foam (28%, 124 Votes)

Continuous coil/open coil (7%, 30 Votes)

Latex (6%, 27 Votes)

Other (let us know in the comments) (3%, 13 Votes)

Foam (2%, 9 Votes)

Total Voters: 436

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Jeff G says:
28 June 2013

I have a motionless water bed

Jax says:
3 July 2013

We have a semi waveless one. We’ve had it for 25 years, and I wouldn’t want to sleep on anything else. Shame Which? doesn’t include waterbeds in any of their reviews.

We had to decide on new beds recently and, living within reach of the Hypnos factory and showroom, had the opportunity to try out all their mattresses and get some advice. We were told that decent mattresses take a few weeks to adjust the topping to your body shape (important to turn them regularly), so trying them out in the shop is of limited benefit; it really just helps you decide on how firm you want it. After that it’s a bit of an act of faith – we felt quality of materials and construction, number of pocket springs (in our case), would be more likely to give a mattress that would last and retain it’s comfort. And, since it’s going to last say 10 – 15 years, worth paying for. Only time will tell! Don’t forget to shop around though – substantial discounts available.

Sean Milner says:
29 June 2013

We bought a Hypnos mattress when we got married in 1995 and have only recently changed it. We were recommended to try Benson’s for Beds after a friend of ours had a really good experience, so we did. We tried various mattresses and finely settled on a pocket sprung mattress much deeper than the Hypnos mattress we were replacing. We had a concern about me being 14 st and my wife being 8 st that we would role into the middle. We were assured that this would not happen so we spent a substanital amount of money on the mattress. After a few weeks of allowing it to settle in and turning it round as recommended we were still finding that we rolled in together. We tried to return the mattress for an alternative but were left very dissappointed with the aftercare service from Bensons for Beds, they refused to do anything quoting the small print of not accepting any returns. We are now stuck with this mattress and we will replace it sooner than we would need to and we will never go back to Bensons for Beds.

morris says:
7 August 2013

We, too, had problems with Bensons for Beds. The mattress was much firmer than the one we tried out in the shop, which was labelled a medium. Online research showed that it was classed as a firm mattress. We claimed unfit for purpose, but Bensons refused to help. Eventually, after contacting the credit card company, Benson’s came and collected it and refunded the money. We were very relieved to see it go.
We, too, would never return there, but are delighted with our Ikea mattress.

Mattresses are things that are often found dumped as they are difficult to dispose of.

It’s sad that people should take so much care in trying to find a good one and then not care for it well. Is there more that we could do about this?

If you have a very heavy mattress then it is not very easy to turn. I also wonder why mattresses are not sold with protective covers like sofas are. It probably wouldn’t change the number bought as if you failed to cover it well on buying it you are still quite likely to cover it (but too late and to hide its condition).

Then we might find fewer dumped mattresses decorating our streets and green spaces.

(And how are they getting on with progressing mattress recycling – and who will collect a mattress when you buy from them.)

How about an article on all the different types of mattress covers and how comfortable they are to sleep on; how good they are at protecting the mattress; how easy they are to wash; if they make turning the mattress any easier – or a method other than a diary of remembering how often you turn your mattress?

Unfortunately for me I have to spend more time in my bed as my Essential Tremors mean that it is less of a problem coping with the shaking as relaxing reduces the shaking, so it makes tasks like using this laptop easier to manage. The downside with my mattress is that there are various outsprung springs which are very uncomfortable and as always as it goes it has to be on my side, ‘the conspiracy theory’!

Every night on TV there seems to be an advert for a budget hotel chain showing Lenny Henry flopping out on the bed. He is no lightweight. I should be interested to know what make and type of mattress can withstand this continuous punishment [several times some nights].

MarieBod says:
9 August 2013

I read recently that Premier Inn are supplied with Hypnos, along with a number of other hotels. We regularly stay in Premier Inns and Marriott and both are extremely comfortable.

I agree – see Figgerty’s comments in several places below; she did some useful e-mailing to various hotel groups to discover the origin of their mattresses.

N8tive says:
13 May 2014

You can now buy a Hypnos 1,000 pocket spring bed through Premier Inns website at what appears to be a trade price!

Elaine Maguire says:
25 October 2015

Hypnos – I researched these as I have stayed at P.Inn many times and now looking for a new mattress; however these mattresses are over 1000 notes! 🙁

Yes but you get 1000 springs – that is less than the going rate for such a good mattress.

Unless you have the build of Sir Lenny Henry you probably would not benefit from such a heavy duty mattress.

Alison says:
26 January 2016
"Daval" says:
30 June 2013

As a ‘Bad Back Sufferer’ we took the advice of my cousin, (who is also a ‘BBS’) who had purchased a ‘Tempur’ mattress and had dramatic improvement in pain free sleeping, we went ahead with the, for us, very expensive investment of the same type.
I have to report that, after the first week of getting used to the very different sleeping experience that comes with this type of mattress, the same dramatic improvement!
No longer do I have to roll out of bed in agony but arise from my slumbers pain free and refreshed!
A complete evangelical convert!
The slight inconvenience of a warmer nights sleep is overcome by having a lesser Tog duvet, in any case it is nothing compared to being pain free!
When sleeping on any different type of mattress i.e. on holiday or visiting friends, the old pains reoccur and steadily get get worse in ratio to the length of stay!
In conclusion, I can barely believe the difference that getting a new appropriate mattress has made to my whole well-being, so maybe for some people it would be worth taking up the firms offer of 60 day ‘try out’, if they can afford the extra expense of this type of mattress.

Me says:
7 July 2013

We needed a new mattress and fancied trying a memory foam but were worried about splashing out on a Tempur in case it turned out to be a very expensive mistake.

As I was searching for one, I found one for under £200 (supposedly usually around £800) on a website called Living Social (they seem to appear on similar sites occasionally). We were very dubious about it but took the plunge on the basis that if we didn’t like that type of mattress, we wouldn’t have wasted quite as much money.

As it happens, we really like it and other half’s bad back doesn’t suffer like it used to.

Helena says:
25 July 2013

I was most interested in your very positive comments regarding the Tempur mattress you purchased recently. As a back suffer myself, I find it very difficult to find a comfortable sleeping position in the mattress I currently have, I would welcome your advice on the manufacture you used to purchase your mattress from, I am aware there are some cheaper copies out in the market place. Also do you find it reasonably easy to turn, with regards to the weight of the mattress

Me says:
25 July 2013

Hi Helena,
Just reread my post, sorry if it sounded like we got a cheap Tempur.

If you look on the Living Social website, they are selling memory foam mattresses at the moment by a company called Zen bedrooms – £189 for a double. This was the one we bought. It is described as a luxury memory foam mattress, although once paid for, we were offered a super luxury upgrade for I think another £100 which we didn’t take up.

It is still ok after 10 months, quite light and we don’t regret buying it. We went for this rather than a Tempur as we weren’t sure whether we would like sleeping on memory foam and didn’t want to waste £1000ish on something we might not like. It was a bit of a gamble but turned out ok. It also turned up in good time.

If you do decide to get one of these, it turns up in a box all rolled up and by some miracle expands to normal size when unrolled. I would advise unrolling it on the bed you want it to be on and sleep in another bed for a few days. It takes about a day to completely expand and does have a slight smell to start with which soon disappears. We made the mistake of leaving it in a spare room and having to move it afterwards.

I do not suffer from back problems except sometimes when staying in hotels, even expensive ones. I guess that they don’t all use decent mattresses. I buy reasonably firm mattresses and replace them after about ten years. I buy well decent quality mid-priced mattresses. If I did have back problems I would be prepared to spend more. This Conversation is well timed because it’s about time for a new mattress.

I stayed in a Marriott hotel a couple of years ago and it was the most comfortable bed I ever slept in. I should contact them to get the details and see if the beds are for sale in tthe UK.

Tempur and other foam mattresses turn me off because I would be too hot for six months of the year and I prefer to feel on the cool side of warm when I’m in bed. Now if they introduced a cool side and a normal side I may well be interested.

People are still talking about turning matresses, I thought ‘no turn’ matresses replaced the ones you had to turn every few months. Some of the deep matresses weigh so much that it takes two people to turn them and as we get older that can be a problem.

Figgerty, it depends on the construction of your mattress. Some are upholstered with fillings on both sides and require a seasonal turn. Turning the mattress end to end, and over, periodically will allow even settlement across the whole surface on both sides of the mattress. It is recomended a new mattress is turned and rotated once a week for the first 3 months. (Hypnos care instructions). This allows the filling to gradually adjust to your body shape. No-turn mattresses only have filling on one side, but should still be rotated.
You’ll need help with a double mattress or larger. Zip and link singles makes a super king size manageable.

MarieBod says:
9 August 2013

Marriott beds are supplied by Hypnos. I agree with you on the comfort – I’ve never had such a good nights sleep and am now investigating buying a Hypnos bed.

David Harrington says:
28 July 2014

You can buy a Premier Inn Hypnos bed from the. Premier Inn website. Ordered one today 🙂

Tony N says:
2 July 2013

My Wife and I change our mattress every 10-12 years because we have read from various sources that this is the recommended life of any ‘good’ mattresses. We spend about £800 which I do not consider cheap and make a big hole in the budget as a single payment but at around 75pence per week its something we accept. We first started using the coil sprung mattresses as pocket sprung were to expensive at the time but the last two mattresses we purchased were pocket sprung. We have also gone from a very firm to a medium firm mattress partly because we are now 50 and feel the need for something a little softer and partly because we have heard that a very firm mattress is not as good for your back as we were first led to believe. Our latest mattress, although pocket sprung has a latex layer which gives it a softer and warmer feel that my wife likes but I am less keen on the warm aspect, especially on warm summer nights when I end up sleeping on top of the quilt to avoid sweating.
My wife suffers from asthma and hay fever so we always put on a dust mite proof cover sheet between the mattress and the normal sheet. They are a ‘heavy’ linen woven sheet and not cheap but it seems to help.

About The Marriott Bed: it costs £1,582 for a king size and $85 shipping. costs.

“Who makes the bed?
The bed options are manufactured by Hypnos (United Kingdom properties) and Crown Bedding (European properties) exclusively for Marriott International. Each bed is sold as a mattress and box spring unit paired with a mattress topper of your choice (synthetic or natural).”

I don’t think I’ll be buying the Marroitt bed though it was like sleeping on a cloud. I have also asked Whitbread for the details of the Premier Inn bed for John Ward, I’m still waiting.

I agree that Marriott Hotels provide supremely comfortable beds and so do Sheraton. They pride themselves on that in their literature and I seem to recall that the manufacturer was Sealy.

We bought a new bed three years ago with a Relyon Revolution mattress. It has pocket springs and a 50mm layer of memory foam and has proved to be very comfortable. It needs to be rotated from time to time and we do it clockwise at the solstices and equinoxes.There was a promotion on kingsize mattresses and we got one for just over £400.

If you want to admire some fabulous mattresses take a trip to Selfridges. The ones we liked were outside our price range unfortunately.

We were having lunch at a Premier Inn the other day; I should have asked to check the mattresses. Lenny Henry doesn’t seem to be doing a backward drop-flop onto the bed several times every night nowadays [or perhaps we’ve been watching the wrong channel]. At around 90 kilos I don’t think I test the mattress beyond endurance.

I contacted Whitbread re Premier Inn beds and a am still awaiting their reply. Marriott was very quick in sending me details of the Marriott store, which is why I could provide the prices above.

There was a very comfortable Relyon bed In the last flat I rented in the early eighties, but it was very expensive when I checked it out when I was buying my first bed a couple of years later. When you rotate your mattress, do you perform any cermonies relating to the solstices and equinoxes?

Is it ok to place a new mattress on an old base?
Can your Relyon Revolution mattress be turned over so you have the non foam side up for the summer?

The usual ceremony is Back Massage.
There may be no significant padding on the reverse of the mattress as it presumably is designed to be used on the memory foam side. Have you tried it? Still worth rotating to prolongue active life.

Hi Figgerty

It’s OK to put a new mattress on an existing base [size for size of course]. We did it some time ago changing from a pocket-spring one that was becoming uncomfortable to a latex one. We then decided to go up a size and got the new Relyon mattress. We decided not to have latex again because it got rather too profiled for our liking. I a not sure whether the Relyon can be turned over – we have never tried that.

Lots of shops sell mattresses separately for just that purpose and hotels and landlords of furnished flats do it all the time. A new mattress with a dense ratio of pocket-springs or a latex mattress, or a much deeper one, and even some memory foam ones, might be heavier than the old mattress so it’s as well to check that the frame will be strong enough if you’re thinking of getting just a new mattress.

I’m thinking we ought to do something ceremonial to celebrate the turning of the mattress. It’s quite a performance in itself, but maybe some appropriately operatic melodies would add a certain je ne sais quoi to the occasion – a bedding march, perhaps. A fresh bouquet, a tincture or twain of our favourite fizz, and some canapés and petit-fours, would probably enhance the event.

John Ward, I thought your ceremony would have a more primitive flavour, but a tinture of something sounds good. I found the information on the Lenny Henry bed, it was there on their website for all but me to see. Hypnos again! I must check them out somewhere.

At Premier Inn we pride ourselves on comfort and quality.
Rooms you can relax in:
* King-size Hypnos beds
* Cosy Fogarty duvets and pillows
* Powerful showers in all rooms and baths in most
* Freeview in most hotels
* WiFi and desk should you need to work in your room
* Imperial Leather shower gel gel, tea and coffee making facilities and a hair dryer
* Blackout curtains for a peaceful night’s sleep

I can’t stay there as I’m allergic to imperial leather shower gel foam.

It looks like Hypnos mattresses are highly favoured by the hotel trade where robust, construction overall quality, and endurance are essential features. Several other brands are also very good; we recently stayed at the Charing Cross Hotel in London and the mattress was exceptionally comfortable but I neglected to check the make. You might care to make a similar enquiry of the owners [Guoman Hotels].

If you can stay awake long enough to reach a branch of Mattressman [located mainly in the east of England] it’s worth taking a look. Even if the slick salesmanship and pestering [they keep popping up like a broken bed-spring] makes you feel a little uncomfortable they do let you lie on any of the beds for as long as you like – unlike some stores which take a dim view of customers actually getting on the beds and asking questions; and their price deals seem very good, with quick delivery and assembly, and disposal of the old mattress or whole bed.

Ads says:
7 August 2013

We stayed in a Premier Inn at Manchester Airport (about 2 years ago) and I had one of the worst nights sleep ever! The bed was so firm it felt, to me, like sleeping on a board. I complained and Premier Inn refunded our night’s cost in line with their guarantee – well done them. By the way the rest of the facilities were excellent, but the bed was the most important thing to me and such a let down.

So, if that is what a Hypnos bed is like I wouldn’t go near one. We’ve had a Tempur mattress for, probably, far too long, replacing the mattress on a base that itself must be 25 years old! Now looking to replace and interested that the latest Tempur mattresses are hot – ours seems very cold, but perhaps the technology in them is different now?

My mum bought a John Lewis bed for her spare room, which we find pretty comfortable when we visit. It seems to be pocket sprung with a memory foam, or similar, top. I would really like to be able to properly try different mattresses to ensure that money isn’t wasted, but apart from my mum’s spare bed, where is that possible?

Guoman Hotels also use Hypnos beds. You could have done a Lenny Henry impression if you had known.

Karen says:
12 July 2013


Karen says:
12 July 2013

Should add that the dog loves it too … Hmm!

Gerard Phelan says:
27 July 2013

Given all those hours I spend using it, I do not begrudge the cost of a good bed. I spend about £1 / spring on a pocket sprung mattress. The current one is a Sleepeezee.

However no-one seems to have mentioned the LENGTH of the mattress as a comfort factor. I find that trying to get to sleep with my legs bent is most uncomfortable. I also find that if my feet can feel or if they overhang the end of the bed, then that is just as uncomfortable. Thus although I am 2 inches short of 6 foot, I need a king sized bed, which at 6 foot 6 inches, is long enough to be comfortable.

Turning it regularly provides me with a strenuous if healthy (!) workout. I dream of finding a Harry Potter wand and the ability to point it at the mattress and say Wingardium Leviosa and watch it turn itself over.

Helen says:
8 August 2013

We are forty-somethings,one of whom often gets a sore back when not sleeping in own bed. We stayed at the Hilton Express in Belfast on two different nights this summer and the bed on the first night was terrible. Both of us could feel the springs and had to cling to the edge to stop rolling together – made more uncomfortable by the heat and poor air con. Eventaully husband had to give up and sleep on the sofa in the room. We told reception and they said they would put a board under the mattress for our second stay a few days later – they didn’t seem surprised we had a problem. However, there was no evidence of a board on the next occasion, but the bed was slightly better. This would put us off staying with this chain again. Premier Inns are usually much more comfortable.