zenhaven flippable mattress

Mattress flipping used to be a thing—the idea was that if you flipped your mattress once or twice a year, you could extend the lifespan of your bed because it would wear down equally on both sides. In fact, virtually all mattresses used to be flippable. Most of them had innerspring construction throughout, which provided an identical feel on both sides.

However, in the 2000s, one-sided mattresses started to gain popularity. These mattresses feature support layers on the bottom and comfort layers (like quilted pillow tops) on the top. At this point, shoppers started looking at materials like memory foam and latex for their additional comfort—and flippable beds became a rarity. 

Now, flippable mattresses are making a comeback, though they're different in key ways from those of the past. If you're replacing an old flippable mattress or considering one of these for the first time, here's what you need to know.

What exactly is a flippable mattress?

The difference between the new double-sided mattresses and the ones from back in the day is that you don't flip them just to get more use out of them. These new models typically have different comfort levels on each side, so if you want to try the firm side, or the cushier one, you simply flip the mattress over.

Advanced materials and production processes allow for foams or latex with different densities on each side of the mattress, which accounts for their versatility. Some are constructed with coils in the center as well. Our Zenhaven natural latex mattress, for example, is among this new breed of flippable options. One side has a Luxury Plush feel; the other side is Gentle Firm, which is 18% firmer.

The reason why we're able to offer a different firmness level on each side of the mattress is that we vary the size and distribution of the "pinholes" formed in the production process, creating areas of different densities. This is also how we create zones of lumbar support. 

Benefits of sleeping on a flippable mattress

It's important to find a mattress that suits your sleep preferences. You want to choose a mattress that offers the right amount of support for your sleeping position as well as the right mattress type, firmness level, and size to complement all of your sleep habits. 

If you're in the market for a new mattress, then you may want to consider a double-sided mattress. Before purchasing, consider the following benefits of a flippable mattress. 

  • Versatile firmness levels: Flippable mattresses are great because they offer two different firmness levels in one bed. This is especially helpful if you sleep with a partner who has completely different sleeping preferences to you. You can choose to customize your bed with a variety of firmness options, including medium-firm, extra firm, or soft. 
  • Extended lifespan: Because you can use both sides of the mattress, your bed may wind up lasting you longer. Since these beds are designed to be used on both sides, you'll likely be able to increase the lifespan of your bed
  • Improved weight distribution: If you consistently sleep in the same spot every night, your mattress may develop body impressions on the sleep surface. However, flippable mattresses will have improved weight distribution so you can lessen the impact of the body impressions on your bed.
  • Cost-effective and eco-friendly: The extended lifespan of a flippable mattress means you'll be reducing your own personal waste and saving money by purchasing mattresses less frequently. You may also be able to secure a 10- or 20-year warranty on your flippable mattress to extend the lifespan even further. Some brands even offer a lifetime warranty. (Learn how to fix a squeaky bed by flipping your mattress.)

Potential drawbacks

While flippable beds have many benefits, there are also some drawbacks as well. Take the following drawbacks into consideration before purchasing a double-sided mattress. 

  • They need more maintenance: The one thing you have to do with a flippable mattress is actually flip it. Mattresses can be incredibly heavy, but you'll need to flip your double-sided bed if you want to experience the different firmness level on the other side. 
  • Limited support: Some double-sided mattresses, such as flippable memory foam mattresses, may have less support than you'd find in a single-sided mattress. If you're prone to back pain or need extra edge support, a single-sided mattress may be best for you. While you can get firm mattresses that are double-sided, you'll be limited on the type of mattress you can choose.
  • Less innovative designs: With a traditional one-sided bed, you can find new innovations, like pillow tops with soft cushioning, adjustable bed frames, split mattresses, and more. If you're looking for a double-sided mattress, you may not be able to find as many compatible innovative designs in this category.

You should carefully consider these drawbacks before purchasing a reversible mattress. Most mattress brands offer a sleep trial to allow you to try out the bed at home for anywhere from three to six months. That way, you can ensure you're getting the best sleep experience possible before making a final decision. 

What kind of mattresses are flippable?

Not all mattresses are made to be flippable. Before the 2000s, the only double-sided beds you could find were innerspring mattresses. Previously, foam mattresses weren't constructed in such a way that they could be considered flippable. However, in recent years, mattress technology has advanced. You can usually find the following types of flippable mattresses: 

  • Memory foam mattress: Firmness levels range from soft to medium. Great for side sleepers and back sleepers.
  • Hybrid mattress: Firmness levels range from medium to firm. Great for side sleepers, back sleepers, and stomach sleepers.
  • Latex mattress: Firmness levels range from medium-soft to firm. Great for back sleepers, side sleepers, and stomach sleepers.
  • Innerspring mattress: Firmness levels range from medium to extra firm. Great for stomach sleepers and back sleepers.

The flippable mattress market has expanded over the last few years. That means you're likely to find one that meets your needs. Whether you're looking for added lumbar support for proper spinal alignment, a breathable bed with good airflow, contouring support for your pressure points, or cushioning foam layers, you should be able to find something that suits you.

Before buying a flippable mattress, make sure it is, indeed, designed to be flipped. You should also ensure it works well with your sleeping preferences and is available at your ideal price point. 

Flippable mattresses for children

Flippable mattresses also come in crib and youth sizes, which extends their lifespan and also provides growing children with more customized surfaces as their bodies and comfort needs change. With a crib mattress, for example, the side geared toward an infant would be firm and designed to provide extra support, while the side for a toddler would offer a more cushioned feel.

Flippable twin- and full-size youth mattresses, designed for children age 3 and up, are also becoming more common. They typically feature a firmer side to provide optimal comfort and support to younger children and a slightly softer side to promote healthy sleep posture in older children.

How to flip your mattress

The decision to flip or not to flip is strictly based on your whims and sleep preferences. The mattress configuration should only be changed if you and/or your sleep partner are looking for a different experience for a specific reason.

Should you choose to flip, it's important to keep in mind this is a two-person job. Fish offers step-by-step instructions:

  1. Remove the sheets and the mattress protector until just the mattress is sitting on top of the platform or foundation.
  2. Position one person on each side of the bed. The stronger of the two should tilt their side of the mattress up in the air and toward the other person.
  3. Once the person on the other side has control of the mattress, the first person moves to the foot of the bed and slides the portion of the mattress touching the foundation to the opposite side, thus flipping the mattress.

Finally, flippable mattresses are compatible with traditional foundations as well as platform beds. If you're using a platform with slats, make sure the slats don't shift while you're in the process of flipping the mattress.

Shop the best flippable mattresses with Saatva

Buying a flippable mattress can be a great investment because it will last you a long time, it's cost-effective, and it's extremely versatile. Saatva offers a variety of flippable mattresses in sizes ranging from a crib size mattress all the way up to a California king. 

Our Zenhaven Latex Mattress and Saatva Youth Mattress are two flippable beds in our collection. All of our mattresses are made with high-quality materials, like natural latex, organic cotton, and eco-friendly foams. They also all come with a 180-night trial period and industry-leading warranty.

Take our mattress quiz to find out which mattress type is right for you. 

you may also like