We all know that beds can make or break a good night’s rest. Though you might automatically think that the mattress is the only thing to consider, the base and environment also play a part in helping with quality sleep. Head to any bed store and the rows of options can be overwhelming, so just how do you know what to look for? We’re here to help you.
From hard to soft mattresses, sprung to memory foam, and natural to synthetic materials, the choice is extensive. Though comfort and the support it provides your body are key factors to think about, the material it’s made from can also help regulate your temperature through the night.
Sprung mattresses are the most common and economic option, consisting of a grid of springs that help to spread body weight evenly, particularly if there are people of different weights sleeping on the same mattress. The tension of the springs are usually variable, with more springs meaning greater support. Meanwhile, memory foam responds to body heat and effectively moulds around the shape of your body for maximum support. It also benefits from hypoallergenic properties which can be important for those who suffer from asthma.
Outer layers of mattresses made from natural materials such as cotton, flax, bamboo and wool are an important consideration as these can help to absorb moisture, increase ventilation and regulate body temperature - especially important on warm summer nights. The finishing is also something to be aware of as quilted tops just have a thin layer of stitching that could become worn with use, whereas buttoned mattresses have threading running the entire depth of the filling, which can help pull the strings tighter and increase tension further.
It goes without saying that the more space you have to move in the night, the less likely you are to be disturbed by another person or nearby surroundings. It is recommended that the bed should be a minimum of 10cm longer than your height and wide enough to fit your elbows if you were to lie on your back with your hands on your hips.
Mattress toppers are another way to add comfort to your bed and increase its longevity with goose feather and down, quilted cotton, wool and hollow fibre polyester alternatives. They can also often be washed to increase cleanliness, but they can be expensive and do not substitute a quality mattress.
Simply the hard frame that your soft mattress rests on, bedsteads comprise a base and often a headboard, footboards generally being optional. Solid or fixed slats on the base are sturdier but can be less comfortable than sprung options which will bow with the mattress. The cushioning of a headboard can also provide additional support for pillows whilst you sleep. Besides comfort, bedsteads can make a statement in your room, from upholstered options to intricate metalwork designs, which is a vital component when matching your mattress up to bedstead size.
If maximising storage space is a concern, then divans can be a useful option, with pull-out draws or liftable mattresses. Alike bedstead bases, they can vary from cheaper and inexpensive hardboard through to sprung versions that can increase comfort. Furthermore, zip-and-link divans come as two single units which can be linked together and enables both easier movement during installation, as well as for single mattresses to be used together according to the individual preferences of each sleeper.
Add to this some holistic changes such as switching off technology an hour or so before sleep and creating a relaxing atmosphere in your sleeping space will all contribute to a well-earned and restful night’s sleep.