Mattress 101

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Do your Homework:

The average mattress shopper visits only 2 or less places before he buys. (Most people just assume that these are the prices). That is why these high priced retail stores are able to exist. Most people visit 1 or 2 of these high priced national chains and soon think that they must pay $1,500 to $4,500 for a great mattress. Of course some pay these exorbitant prices because they want the very best. At the very least they settle on a mattress for $1,000-$1,500 and the big store just made $500-$1,000 profit.  (It doesn’t take long to understand how they afford $10,000 per month in rent)

The more you’re educated the better chance you have to get the very best investment possible for your personal  budget.  All I ask is that you include my warehouse in your search.  I don’t believe that you will be disappointed and know that I will likely make a new friend and a customer.

What To Look For When Buying A Mattress:

The number one rule when shopping for a mattress is lay on it. It’s just like buying clothes, shoes or a car. You have to try it just like you would when you sleep on it. The mattress should be supportive enough so that you don’t have the “hammock effect”. If your butt is lower than your head then at around 2:00 A.M. your back will start to hurt. You should be horizontal with no curves. Once you get the support then it’s completely personal preference from there with regard to softness. Come in and try ours out. Some people come in and lay on it for an hour to be sure which one fits best. Anyone is welcome to do that. We look forward to hearing from you. Happy Shopping Comfort Gone are the days when a mattress had to be hard-as-a-board to be good for you. A too-hard mattress may only succeed in putting your shoulders and hips to sleep. You’ll sleep best when your bed helps you feel cradled in comfort, cozy and secure.


Today’s top quality mattress/foundation ensembles are built for superior comfort. Luxurious new cushioning materials and extra-soft surface treatments create a plusher, more comfortable feel. Support Correct support is the essential ingredient for a healthy body. A good mattress and foundation will gently support your body at all points and keep your spine in the same shape as a person with good standing posture. Pay special attention to your shoulders, hips, and lower back—the heaviest parts. If there’s too little support, you can develop back pain. But if the mattress is too hard for you, you can experience uncomfortable pressure. A word about “firm.” Don’t rely on product labels to tell you which mattress will give you the right support. One manufacturer’s “firm” may feel harder than another’s “extra firm.” The only way to find out if the support is right is to lie down and try. Durability It’s the quality of the materials used and how they’re put together that determine how long a mattress and foundation will provide the comfort and support you bought them for. The best assurance of good performance over a good many years is to buy the highest quality sleep set you can afford.


A word about the warranty. Don’t look to the warranty to tell you how long to keep your mattress and foundation. It’s there to protect you against product defects, not against the gradual loss of comfort and support. A sleep set may still be usable after 15 or 20 years, but it’s not giving you the good night’s sleep you deserve. Space Cramped quarters can turn sleeping into a nightly wrestling match. A healthy sleeper moves anywhere from 40-60 times a night, including some dozen full body turns. You need freedom of motion while you sleep and to help you relax while getting to sleep. If you sleep with a partner, be sure to select queen or king size. Both are not only wider, but several inches longer than the standard “double” (full size), which offers each sleeper only as much space as a baby in a crib. (Below are details that you may be of interest)

Mattress 101: 

Who made the Mattress you see at the big furniture store? Was it made in a factory they own? Probably not. Several years ago the big mattress companies moved their operations to southern states to lower labor costs. With the cost of diesel fuel today it’s not cost effective to ship mattresses all over the country so what’s their solution? They contract other factories to make their product, apply their brand label and then ship them to stores. As an example, all King Coil mattresses sold at Haynes and Sleepys over the last several years were not made at a King Coil facility. They were ALL made by Paramount Mattress Factory in Norfolk, VA. Most consumers have no idea where their mattress was assembled. They use the same springs, padding, foam, and ticking materials in these “Factory” mattresses that are in the “Brand Name” mattresses. What does this mean to you as a buyer? Same mattress, less money. It really is that simple! In fact they make two-sided mattresses that you can buy for a lot less than the famous name single sided models. 2-Sided Mattresses The NO-FLIP mattress fad has proven to be a success for manufacturers, and an outright failure in the eyes of the consumer. Simmons first introduced the one sided No-Flip Design in 2000. Simmons claimed that their new mattress was not only an improvement, but was also a more maintenance free mattress compared to its two-sided predecessors. Not to be out done Spring Air introduced The Never-turn™ Mattress. Many other mattress manufacturers followed their lead with single sided beds and maintenance free ad campaigns such as Serta.


Life expectancy of a mattress has dropped from between 12-15 years, down to 5-7 years. The era of disposable mattresses has to end. In a world that needs to focus more on renew ability, and recycling, it is imperative that we eliminate the wasteful practice of manufacturing “can’t flip” mattresses. In July of 2007 a new federal fire safety standard went into effect on all mattresses sold in the United States, and it was a costly test to pass. Each bed tested has to pass the fire regulations and it costs thousands of dollars per mattress. This drove many small mattress manufacturing companies out of business (much like small gas stations were driven out of business when tanks needed to be replaced; an unintended consequence).


Now if you are looking for alternatives, you have to know where to look. Furthermore, while you’re out there shopping they might even tell you no one makes two sided mattresses anymore, an untruth that our customers report having been told at competitors stores frequently. Through the years manufacturers and mattresses have changed; waterbeds have faded into a novelty, pillow-tops and ultra plush mattresses have arrived, memory foam, and adjustable air mattresses have advertised their way into the forefront, and “no flip mattresses” have taken over. When one sided beds entered the market place consumers looked on the concept with skepticism. When the manufacturers claimed that the beds would last just as long, the consumer asked “How can it?” The materials were the same; though manufacturers claimed they were better. The polyurethane foam in most mattresses breaks down, compressing roughly 20 % every 5 years. If one were to believe what they said, then some miracle had to be at work. Unfortunately for consumers, there are no mattress miracles, and saggy mattresses have ensued. Here is what differentiates a one sided bed from a two sided bed: when you sleep in a spot on the mattress you compress the foam only in that area; after a few weeks, or months you will be able to see a defined difference between where you sleep and the rest of the bed. If there are two people then you will develop a crest in the middle of the mattress over time. If you rotate your mattress head to foot, you will still be sleeping in mostly the same place, but you will vary it slightly. However, the crest in the middle will remain. After a couple of years it will get more and more defined, to the point that your mattress will look like two hammocks side by side (over 2” sags on each side have been reported on mattresses under 2 years old). It will often be uncomfortable, but not saggy enough to meet the warranty requirements. This could be avoided by flipping the mattress over. When you flip the bed, the weight of both you and your mattress will be distributed across the entire surface on which you had been sleeping. The majority of the pressure will be on the areas which you had not compressed, resulting in flattening of the mattress as you wear the other side. The durability of a two sided bed then becomes significantly greater; potentially 2-3 times as long. So why do most stores still carry only one sided mattresses? Brand name recognition and profit margins! Someone who has owned a Simmons for 15-20 years may want to get another one. Unfortunately for them Simmons today is not the same company of 20 years ago. They are making a completely different product, and are owned by completely different people.

Mattress Materials 

Did you know that there are only two innerspring manufacturers in the United States, and one of those companies has an overwhelming market share? Leggett & Platt is a four-billion dollar a year corporation that manufactures more innerspring than any other company in the US. Sealy, Simmons, Serta, Sterns & Foster don’t own steel plants nor do they “turn” their own springs. What they do, as well as any other mattress company you can think to name is use innerspring from Leggett & Platt. Our Factory uses the same innerspring units. What about foams and padding? Another company you may have heard about, as they have been based in Richmond since 1957, is Carpenter Company. They are an International Company and the largest manufacturer of cushioning products for the bedding and upholstery industries in the world. Once again, all the big name mattresses use their foam and cushioning products. We use them also. 


Foam encasement is not preferred over the more expensive reinforced metal edges.  It is a way for manufacturers to cut corners.  Generally when a mattress is foam encased the manufacturer has reduced the expensive steel by 1/8 percent.  It seems fine in the showroom but does not hold up in the long run.

© 2019 by Cape Fear Bedding.

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