How to buy sleep
To give you some idea of what aspects are most important, consider how these criteria affect your health and well-being:
- Support and Spinal Alignment
- Minimal Surface Pressure
- Temperature & Humidity Balance
- Healthy Breathing
- Personalized Design and Construction
- Consistent Performance
Support and Spinal Alignment
Your mattress should provide targeted lower back support no matter how soft or firm the mattress, A mattress that does not support your spine sufficiently can lead to backache. The ideal position of your spine while lying is the same as while standing. A mattress that is too hard will tend to push on your shoulder and hip while not supporting your lower back or side. Soft mattresses often sag, causing your spine to follow the curve of the mattress. Only a mattress that can conform to your body without sagging will give adequate support.
This support should be felt evenly along the length of your body, especially at your waist and lower back.
A neutral sleep posture is the basis for deeper breathing and more restful sleep.
Minimal Surface Pressure
Typically a sleeper will change their position 40 to 50 times per night. This is necessary to stretch and relax the spine and muscles. If the mattress is too soft or not responsive enough, changing your position will cause your muscles to exert more energy, thus affecting your sleep cycle and the quality of sleep. But: tossing and turning could be increased and lead to poor sleep with your body constantly trying to find a comfortable position if your bed does not allow even weight distribution. The pressure on your skin should be as low as possible. High surface pressure can result in capillary shut-off when the pressure is too high. The body attempts to re-position itself to counteract the discomfort leading to increased tossing and turning.
A mattress that conforms to the shape of your body will distribute your weight evenly and eliminate high-pressure areas, typically shoulders and hip. This allows you to relax into the deeper levels of sleep, which provide the greatest recovery for your body. This pressure can be measured scientifically to assure proper circulation. You can also test for yourself by lying on your side and feeling the pressure on your shoulder and hip. Many types of cushioning will perform fairly well when they are new; therefore most mattresses feel good in a mattress showroom. The real test is how they perform over time.
Temperature & Humidity Balance
During the night, as your body rests, perspiration is released as water vapor. Synthetic bedding and poly-fill in mattresses trap and hold the moisture so air cannot circulate.
Humidity affects your heart rate - when body temperatures rise and moisture is produced, your heart rate increases. This, in turn, elevates blood pressure and causes shallower sleep. You may awake in a sweat, unable to return to sleep or just wake up in the morning feeling like you didn't get enough sleep. At a time when you should be resting, your heart isn't.
Humidity affects breathing - Synthetics produce moisture and thick cotton battings take a long time to dry out. Thus, they provide the perfect humid climate for molds, mildew, and dust mites to thrive- affecting breathing and causing allergies.
Our components reduce humidity - The mattress padding we use is pure wool. Our Plein Air Wool® conducts moisture away from the body absorbing up to one third of its weight without feeling damp, allows air to circulate, and dissipates moisture much faster than down, cotton, or polyester.
Our mattress covers are made from 100% organic cotton knit, a highly breathable, quick drying material that works with the mattress core to perfectly conform to and support your body. The latex foam in our mattresses has interconnected cells to resist moisture build-up and accelerate drying. Our coils and micro-coils provide constant airflow. Together, these components make for a hygienic, dry and healthy sleeping climate.
Mattresses need to be hypoallergenic and objectively tested for chemical safety. There is no other piece of furniture in your life you spend more time with in close proximity. Our beds provide a safe healthy breathing environment reducing the bodies intake of unsafe chemicals and allergens. They are free of pbde's and other harmful toxins. All our components are certified to be chemically safe by Oekotex Standard 100.
Personalized Design and Construction
There is no single mattress design that is good for everyone. Indeed, why should there be? Among most couples there is a significant difference in the weight and build between the partners.
Mattresses best tailored to the sleepers' needs are those which have two sleep zones; one for each partner. No longer do you have to compromise to find the mattress that is right for you. Different firmnesses within one mattress cover are available in all our zippered styles. Over the last 25 years 30% of the mattresses we have made are what we call a "split". This is when one person wants their side firm while the other wants theirs soft. We believe that close to 30% of the time a shared mattress with the same firmness on both sides will not work for a couple.
Your mattress should feel stable and balanced. You should not feel every move your partner makes. Our individual design ensures that motion transfer is limited to an absolute minimum. In addition, our flexible slatbase allows individual support and comfort adjustments. Our design is easy and effective, just lift the mattress and move the sliders to firm or soften areas wherever needed.
Generally, conventional bedding fails in two areas:
Firstly, the padding, which consists primarily of polyurethane foam, will soften and show body impressions. Polyurethane foam will lose 20 to 40 % of its resiliency in ten years, causing a proportionate increase in surface pressure.
Secondly, as low coil count springs inevitably weaken, the mattress sags in the middle, distorting the natural curve of the spine.
We have found no other material that can match the resiliency and performance of natural latex and pocketed coils. Our 100% natural latex is consistent in its support and longlasting with minimal height and firmness loss.