How to buy your best bed
Whether you’ve been looking for a new bed for awhile or you’re planning to see if there are any Black Friday deals worth taking advantage of, you’ll want to ensure you make a good investment. That’s what a quality bed is – it’s an investment in your health and wellbeing.
A good bed should give you support, comfort and a good night’s sleep. And a good night’s rest will help you be your best self.
When should you buy a new bed?
Beds don’t last forever, unfortunately. And even if your bed looks okay at first glance, if it’s past its best, you won’t be getting the best sleep you could be.
It might be time to change beds if:
- You’ve had a lifestyle change (e.g. marriage, divorce, moving homes, having a baby, etc.)
- Your mattress is visibly worn (it’s lumpy, it sags, it has tears, etc.)
- You’ve experienced better sleep in a different bed
- Your mattress is more than seven years old
- You wake up feeling stiff or sore
- Your body has changed (losing or gaining weight, or ageing)
How to decide on a new bed
Before you can buy a bed, you need to know what you’re looking for. The easiest place to start is with size. If you’re sharing a bed with someone else, the general rule of thumb is that bigger is better. That said; you also need to take into account how big your bedroom is. Taller people may also want to consider an extra-length bed.
If sharing a bed, you need to look for something that will meet both of your needs. This can be tricky, especially given that the correct support differs from individual to individual. It depends on height, weight, build and how you feel most comfortable sleeping (find out what your sleeping position says about you). It’s easiest to reach a happy compromise if you both go bed shopping together.
Make sure you give yourself enough time. Buying a bed in a rush can literally give you sleepless nights! And, just as you would test drive a car before purchasing it, it’s best to try out the bed you’re considering too. There’s no need to feel awkward about it – bed shop salespeople are very used it. It’s best to lie on the bed for at least 10 minutes to get a proper feel for it. And don’t go bed shopping when you’re exhausted. Everything will feel like a good fit.
Figure out what sort of “feel” you like. Do like a soft bed that you can sink into, or do you prefer a firm bed that you can lie on top of?
Here are a few tips to bear in mind:
- When you lie on your side, your spine should be horizontal and turning should be quite comfortable.
- Generally, heavier people require firmer beds. People who sleep on their backs may also prefer a firmer bed to those who sleep on their sides.
- Different manufacturers will have different definitions of soft, medium and hard. This is why it’s important to try out each bed under consideration before making a final decision.
- If you and your partner have a weight difference of more than about 20kg between you, you may want to consider separate mattresses.
- To check the “fit” of the bed, lie on your back and slide your hand into the hollow at the bottom of it. If it slides in too easily, the bed might be too hard. If you struggle to fit your hand in, the bed may be too soft. You’re looking for just a slight resistance.
- If you have any health issues that affect your sleep, it’s worth speaking to your doctor or physiotherapist to get their input before selecting a bed.
- Do some online research. Read reviews about the mattresses you’re considering to see how they are rated by people who have already purchased them.
- Set a budget. Decide how much you are willing and able to spend, and focus your research within your budget category.
- Shop around. Once you’ve found the bed you like the best, look for the best deal you can find on it.
- Don’t forget to consider the warranty and aftersales service. Understand what the retailer and manufacturer warrants in the mattress. Workmanship and materials should be guaranteed, but comfort is a personal perspective and often not covered. Read the fine print on your warranty so there are no surprises if something goes wrong.
Once you’ve purchased a bed
Remember to register your warranty with the manufacturer, and to protect your mattress to avoid voiding the warranty. Invest in a waterproof mattress protector, which will not only keep your mattress stain-free, but also improves hygiene.
For more expert sleep advice, visit our Sleep Blog.