When we’re looking for a new mattress, this is certainly a question that’s going to spring to your mind. However, a problem with this particular question is what one person might find comfortable, another may find the opposite. In other words, what we find comfortable is completely subjective.

This blog is going to delve into the different factors that determine what you may consider ‘comfortable’, and how best to find the mattress that’s designed for the way you sleep.

Mattress composition

When it comes to what your mattress is made from, it can be a bit of a minefield. From pocket springs, open coil, memory foam, latex to hybrid, there are so many options that make it hard to determine what’s comfortable or not. Here, we’ll give our own views:

  • Open coil. We believe that open coil mattresses have the most potential to be the least comfortable. This is because of its high probability to create ‘roll-together’, and due to being a continuous wire comprising the spring, it means you would be able to feel your partner moving around in the night. Whilst they’re great budget options and perfect for those who sleep alone, we think there are more aspects that constitute an uncomfortable night’s sleep by comparison to the other types of mattresses.
  • Memory foam. Whilst we love the body-moulding properties that memory foam provides, it comes hand in hand with its heat retention qualities. Because air seeps out of millions of little holes in memory foam, it makes it hard for heat to escape. So if you tend to be a hot sleeper, memory foam could cause you to have uncomfortable nights of sleep, that’s for sure.
  • Latex. Similar to memory foam but slightly more bouncy, natural latex mattresses combat the heat retention issue of their synthetic counterpart. Breathable, anti-allergy and anti-microbial, you definitely wouldn’t overheat on a latex mattress. However, one downside to these extremely durable sleeping solutions is that their bouncy nature could mean you feel your partner moving around in the night.
  • Pocket sprung. Independently moving springs allow for a pocket sprung sleeping surface to mould to the contours of your body whilst you sleep, which we’d certainly attribute to both comfortable and supportive qualities. When paired with a natural or synthetic filling, there are many other qualities you can benefit from such as breathability, insulation and anti-allergy.
  • Hybrid. Usually consisting of pocket springs and an additional comfort layer of either memory foam, latex or Geltex, combining two types of mattress forms means you can benefit from both of their properties. Choosing the right comfort layer for the way you sleep would be essential for determining what is comfortable for you.

Mattress tension or support

Mattress tension and what you think is comfortable really comes down to your preferred sleeping position and body weight. Both of these are determining factors to what mattress will work best for the way you sleep.

  • Softer. Best designed for side sleepers and lighter statures. The soft tension provides cushioning to the shoulders and hips when you sleep on your side, in turn promoting healthy spine alignment and a comfortable night’s sleep.
  • Medium. The medium tension is also designed for the same kind of sleepers as the softer tension, including average statures and those who have a preference for a sleeping surface that is a little bit more firm.
  • Medium firm. If you don’t have a preference for a sleeping position and find yourself waking up in a variety of ways, a medium tension may be most comfortable for you. This means it’s neither too firm for sleeping on your side or too soft for sleeping on your back or front. 
  • Firmer. If you prefer to sleep on your back or front, a firmer sleeping surface will be most comfortable for you. This is because the firmer tension can adequately support your spine in these sleeping positions, including a variety of body weights too.
  • Extra firm. Similarly, the extra firm tension should be used for front and back sleepers, heavier statures and those who suffer from back and/or joint pain. An extra firm sleeping surface ensures the spine is strongly and persistently supported in order to combat aches and pains.

Mattress fillings

Although there’s a huge variety of fillings that can be incorporated into a mattress, they can generally be placed in two categories: natural and synthetic. What you will find the most comfortable comes down to whether you suffer from hay fever or not.

  • Natural. If you are affected by hay fever, a mattress that incorporates any natural fillings may not be a comfortable option for you. This is because dust mites inevitably live in our mattresses after usage due to the fact they feed off dead skin cells. Natural fillings have large pore sizes, which make it easier for dust mites and allergens to pass through them. Overall, this encourages more of a build-up of these allergens which can trigger hay fever symptoms, which certainly doesn’t make for a comfortable night’s sleep. Natural fillings include cotton, wool, cashmere, silk, mohair, horsehair and lambswool.
  • Synthetic. On the other side of the spectrum, polyester or synthetic fillings have very small pore sizes, which make it difficult for dust mites to pass through and build up. Therefore, this option tends to be better for hay fever sufferers and can provide a much more comfortable sleeping environment. If you want to completely combat the possibility of dust mites, latex and memory or reflex foam options are fantastic for this due to their tight cell structure.

Innovative materials

Lastly, one of the last factors that can determine a comfortable night’s sleep is whether you can be too hot or cold at night. Here are some innovative materials that can help combat these issues.

  • Geltex. This intelligent material is essentially a comfort layer that’s infused with air capsules, foam crystals and gel molecules. These combined create an extremely breathable sleeping surface that is able to wick away excess moisture and keep you cool. Ideal for those who get too hot in the night, there are other options such as Tencel mattress covers that also help combat this issue.
  • Memory foam. Despite also being under our composition heading, memory foam can also be used as a comfort layer. As described above too, memory foam is fantastic for retaining heat as you sleep. For anyone who feels too cold at night, perhaps a memory foam mattress or hybrid option can help you feel more comfortable at night.

And there you have it, our top tips to finding a mattress that will be most comfortable for you. If you follow each category and decide upon what meets your needs best, we’re sure you’ll be on your way to many years of comfortable night’s sleep.