The Best Mattress for the Way You Live
One of the biggest factors to consider when purchasing a mattress is your lifestyle. Do you live by yourself, perhaps in a tiny apartment? Do you have a partner whose sleep preferences are way different from yours? Do you hit the gym every day? Your answer to these questions can help determine which mattress is right for you.
Here are some tips that will help you find the best mattress for the way you live.
The best mattress for single adults
If you live alone, a full size mattress can be a great option. It offers ample space for one person but can also accommodate a second (if you don't mind getting cozy). When you're part of a couple, you have to consider both of your sleep preferences—but solo sleepers don't have to make any compromises.
Start narrowing down your choices by thinking about the way you sleep. Are you a side, back, or stomach sleeper, or do you move around between positions? That will determine your optimal firmness level. Side sleepers sleep best on a softer mattress, back sleepers are better suited to a medium firm surface, stomach sleepers should choose a firmer mattress, and "combination sleepers," as they're called, will like the feel of a medium-firm mattress.
Next, think about how you want your mattress to feel. Do you want it to have some bounce, or would you rather sink in? Perhaps you prefer something in the middle. That will determine the type of mattress you might like best. Innerspring is, well, "springy"; body-contouring memory foam is "huggy"; and the feeling of sleeping on latex is often described as "floaty."
Our Best Mattress for Solo Sleepers
The best mattress for couples
The first decision couples face is settling on the right size. Twosomes with limited space and money generally opt for a queen size, whereas those with more space—and a bigger budget—should spring for a king size (so you don't have to worry about kicking or elbowing each other).
One thing to keep in mind if you're shacked up: Innerspring, hybrid, and latex are the best mattresses for sex because they allow you to move around easily. These mattresses all sleep cool as well, so you can snuggle up without getting too toasty overnight. Couples should also look for a mattress with good edge support, such as foam-encased rails around the perimeter, so you can comfortably sleep or sit on the edge (and so you don't fall on the floor while you're getting busy).
If you and your partner have very different sleep preferences—say, one of you sleeps on your side and one of you sleeps on your stomach—consider putting two twin XL mattresses side-by-side so you can each choose your desired comfort level. An adjustable air mattress, which gives you the ability to adjust the firmness on both sides of the bed, will allow you and your S.O. to keep the peace in bed.
Our Best Mattress for Couples
The best mattress for parents
For those whose kids like to cuddle in bed with them, a king-size mattress is ideal, as it will give everyone ample room to pile in. The same advice goes for pet parents: The more space you have, the less likely your sleep will be disturbed by your animal companion.
If children or pups tend to end up in your bed, consider a memory foam mattress, which is great at isolating motion. If someone moves around a lot or gets in and out of bed frequently during the night, you won't be bothered.
Pregnant women need extra cushioning when they sleep to ease the aches and pains caused by hormone fluctuations and the strain of carrying more weight in the front of the body. A memory foam mattress can help alleviate pressure points and will conform to your changing body—but if you don't want to shell out for a brand-new mattress while you're expecting, a memory foam mattress topper is a nice temporary solution.
It's not just your mattress you have to think about as a parent: There's also your kids' as well. A basic firm or medium-firm mattress is the best choice for youngsters. For growing teens, you may want to opt for a twin XL, which is five inches longer than a standard twin.
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The best mattress for highly active people
Whether you're an athlete or just really like hitting the gym, the right mattress can go a long way toward helping you maintain your active lifestyle. The top feature you should look for in a mattress is the right comfort level so that your spine stays in proper alignment while you sleep. That means selecting a softer mattress if you sleep on your side, a medium-firm mattress if you sleep on your back, or a firmer mattress if you sleep on your stomach.
In addition to finding the right comfort level, look for added lumbar support in a mattress. This is crucial to avoiding pain that can throw you off your fitness game. You can find lumbar support in the form of reinforced foams in the center third of the mattress or other methods of strengthening the area from your shoulders to hips.
Finally, you may want to choose a mattress with cooling features. Since exercising gets you all hot and sweaty—and heat can interfere with your sleep—it's important to keep your bed cool. Hybrid and latex mattresses sleep cool, but if you like the feel of memory foam, look for one that incorporates cooling gel or heat-dissipating graphite layers.
Our Best Mattress for Highly Active People
Your body type should also play a role in the mattress you choose. Here's how to find the best mattress for your body type.