Consumer Reports tests comfort of mattresses

March 5, 2013 8:24:28 PM PST
We all love a good night's sleep, and a good mattress can help. But a new survey by Consumer Reports found about one-in-five people wished they'd bought a different mattress.

A mattress can be one of the hardest things to buy. So Consumer Reports tested a dozen queen-size foam and innerspring mattresses, ranging in price from less than $500 to nearly $2,000.

"Body support is our most important test. We map the natural curve of the spine for a range of people," Consumer Reports' Chris Regan said.

Then testers record how well each mattress maintains that curve when sleeping on your back. Testers also check how well your body is supported when sleeping on your side.

In another test, an increasing amount of weight is applied to the mattress to check for firmness. Many of the mattresses tested aren't as firm as they claim.

And another test checks for durability by rolling a heavy weight over each mattress 30,000 times.

Consumer Reports also cut open the mattresses to inspect the construction. It turns out you don't have to spend a fortune to get a good mattress.

"Higher-priced frills, like additional coils or fancier fabrics, really don't guarantee a better mattressm," Regan said.

Consumer Reports named the following three queen-size mattresses that cost under a $1,000 "Best Buys:"

For innersprings, the pick went to Simmons Glover Park from Sears for $780, and a Serta Perfect Sleeper Elite from Macy's for $835.

For foam mattresses, the Novaform Serafina from Costco. It comes in this box. You just roll it out, and it's ready for you to get a good night's sleep. The cost is $900.

Consumer Reports says its ratings are a place to start, but it's best to try out a mattress in the store. If you can't do that, check the return policy carefully and make sure there are no restocking fees. While you can't try out the Costco mattress, you can return it for free if you don't like it, and there is no charge for pickup.

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