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Mattress Buying Guide

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How Firm Should My Mattress Be?

Replacing your mattress can be exhausting. Navigating the stores and websites, debating between foam and springs, and determining the best mattress size and how much to spend can leave you feeling like you need a good nap.

One constant we can share is that firmness and support are not the same thing in a mattress! When we talk about support with our customers, we are referring to the feeling you have in a bed when your entire body feels comfortable, aligned and in harmony. You can have a soft bed and still be completely supported, allowing your body to relax and drift off to sleep.

“Firmness” is highly subjective based on personal preference and dictates how hard or soft a mattress feels. What’s firm for you may not be firm for others, and what’s soft for others may not be soft for you.


How can I tell if my mattress is too soft or too firm?

How you sleep affects how the mattress feels to you. If a side sleeper wakes up with sore hips, shoulders and knees, the mattress may be too firm. On the other hand, if a side sleeper wakes up with a sore back, then the mattress could be too soft.

To help alleviate these aches and pains, Sleepy’s and SleepMaker work closely with the Australian Chiropractors Assocation (ACA), to ensure our Chiropractic Collection of mattresses are made with quality materials for the ultimate spine support and care. Your sleeping position acts as a guideline for choosing the right mattress support for you.

We have put together mattress support guidelines based on your sleeping position.


  • Back Sleepers

The ACA agree that sleeping on your back is the best position for your spinal health. Sleeping on your back evenly distributes weight across the surface of your body, allowing your head, neck and spine to rest in a neutral position. It can also help minimise pressure and ensure proper alignment of your internal organs. You may choose to place a pillow under your knees to keep to the natural curve of your spine. If you are a back sleeper a medium to firm mattress is a comfortable option and will support your spine. A soft or plush mattress may also suit your sleeping preferences if you are a back sleeper, it’s entirely subjective. You could consider investing in an adjustable base which will allow you to elevate your feet and or head to your preferred position.


  • Side Sleepers

When positioned correctly, side sleeping has several benefits such as, reduced joint and lower back pain. To ensure you are positioned correctly, try lying on your preferred side with your lower leg straight and upper leg bent. Place a pillow between your knees and bend both your knees and hips slightly, to position your pillow. This will reduce pressure placed on your back and throughout your body. A mattress with medium firmness is able to mould and hug your body, to provide support on your hips. If you are a side sleeper, a soft or plush mattress may suit your sleeping preferences.


  • Stomach Sleepers

According to the ACA, stomach sleeping will eventually create problems with your spine and it is not a recommended sleeping position. It puts unnecessary pressure on your neck due to twisting your head and the straining of your lower back. Most of your weight is in the middle of your body, which makes it difficult to maintain a neutral spine position. If you do sleep on your front, a firm mattress is best suited for stomach sleepers in order to push back against your body for spinal support.


Trying a new sleep position comes with many benefits, check out our guide to The Best Sleep Positions for Your Health.


We have compiled the key information into the Mattress Comfort Scale below as a guideline:


What Size Mattress Should I Get?

A deep, restorative night’s sleep is becoming more and more necessary for our busy lives. For those who like a lot of space in bed or who share a bed with another, how do you find a bed that is big enough?There are a myriad of reasons and lifestyle changes, that create the need for a new mattress. For example, you might be starting a family, moving houses, downsizing, or expanding your bedroom space or children are outgrowing their first beds. The rule of thumb is the length of your mattress should be at least 10-15cm longer than the tallest sleeper and you may consider going up a size if you are sleeping next to a sprawler, or have kids and pets climbing into bed. Other consideration in size selection include:

  • If you share a mattress with a partner and struggle as a ‘hot sleeper’, increasing the size of your mattress can create some breathing space, so you can both maintain your individual sleeping temperature.
  • For those who are constantly woken up by a partner tossing and turning in the night, a larger mattress can help reduce partner disturbance as it isolates the movement.

Our mattress size indicator below will help you find the best mattress size for your lifestyle. Manufacturers advise there is a 2cm tolerance of which the mattress can be shorter in width or length.



What are the Different Mattress ‘Feels’ or Comfort Levels?

There are several different comfort levels that a mattress can offer. The “firmness” in your mattress from Sleepy’s is categorised into three main “feels.”

The best way to explain mattress feels is to think about the experience you have when you first lay on a mattress. The feeling you have in a bed when your entire body feels comfortable, aligned and in harmony. You can have a soft bed and still be completely supported, allowing your body to relax and drift off to sleep.


Extra Plush

The cloud-like comfort experienced when sleeping on a plush mattress comes from the luxurious materials used, and its greater ability to conform to the shape of your body. For a touch of indulgence and a higher price point, an extra plush mattress is suitable for those who like a soft feel mattress. An extra plush feel will have you wrapped in a plush, cloud-like hug. The extra layers of soft foams add height and comfort to the mattress.



Mattresses that are a plush feel are a particularly good choice for those who prefer hugging support, as the conformable materials will cradle the hips and shoulders, dispersing body weight and minimising spinal stress. This mattress is suitable for those seeking a soft, cloud-like sleep surface. The ‘hugging’ sensation occurs when every part of your body that is touching the bed feels like you are snuggling into a big, fluffy, soothing cloud. The top panel has ‘cushiony’ look and the surface is flexible under your body as it contours and moulds to your shape.



When you lay on a mattress and have a balanced level of contouring and push back, this is a medium feel. A cloud like experience, the top panel is neither too lofty nor is it too inflexible under your body. The mattress moulds and conforms to your body but it is not claustrophobic, nor do your hips and shoulders feel like they are being pushed upwards. The feel of medium mattresses suits a wide range of people and is a popular choice.



A firm mattress will immediately push back against your body, it has an inflexible surface and very little puffiness and “bounce” in the top panel. These mattresses can assist in facilitating a neutral spinal position, keeping the body straight to regulate correct posture. They can also help to reduce pressure on the circulation for better blood flow.


Extra Firm

Our Extra Firm Mattresses offer whole-body support. With an inflexible surface that is neither plush nor bouncy, the extra firm foams offer the benefit of minimised partner disturbance. Designed to relieve back stress by cradling the hip and shoulder regions.


How do you know what feel is right for you?

The feel of a mattress is highly subjective because it depends entirely on your personal experience. The subjectivity comes from your own personal needs, preferences, experience, body shape, age, health and aches. We recommend using our Find Your Mattress tool to help narrow down your options, before visiting your closest store and trying the mattress! Aim to lay on the bed for at least 15-20 minutes, to really gauge what is right for you.

What Type of Mattress is Best?

Why is it Important to Try a Mattress First?

Did you know we spend around a third of our lifetime in bed? It is important that we are comfortable and supported whilst sleeping. The feels listed on each of our products online and in-store have been rated by a team of dedicated sleep enthusiasts who love beds, love sleep and live, breathe and dream sleep health. However, because feels are subjective, we still strongly suggest trying the mattress in store. You may think you want a firm bed, however you may change your mind to a medium feel after laying on it!


How Much Should I Spend on a Mattress?

Mattress prices tend to vary depending on size, materials and structure. While some are under $500, the majority of mattresses are $500-$2,000, which is what the average person pays for their mattresses. Premium mattresses may exceed $2,000.

Think of your mattress as an investment – purchasing a high-quality mattress will save you from prematurely having to buy a replacement due to discomfort or loss of structural support. For example, you may find a spring mattress supports your spine while a foam finish feels a bit too solid. The amount of money that you spend on a new mattress will depend on your life situation, health considerations, firmness preference and budget.

We explain the pros and cons, and price range, for the different types of mattresses below.


Chiropractic Collection

For over 15 years Sleepy’s and SleepMaker have partnered with the Australian Chiropractors Association (ACA) to provide customers with a sleep solution for spinal support. With ACA endorsement we provide everyday Australians with a credible product to guide them to a healthier way of sleeping.

As mattress technologies continue to progress, SleepMaker work closely with the ACA to ensure Sleepy’s exclusive Chiropractic Collection incorporates the latest innovations and designs for postural alignment and relaxation of the spinal muscles. Such innovations include SleepMaker’s Miracoil spring system, where the coil supports the natural curves of the spine, creating a cradling effect. Additionally, the Australian Made SleepMaker Pocket Springs independently adjust to the weight and contour of the body whilst minimising partner disturbance. Each mattress is uniquely constructed with generously layered Australian Made foams, to provide support and relieve pressure on the spine.


Chiropractic Collection Queen size mattress price range: $1,999 – $6,399


Affordable Collection


Sleepy’s endeavour to promote the power of sleep by providing mattresses to support every customer to enjoy a great night’s sleep. Each mattress in the affordable collection includes a solid support system with technologies such as, Australian Made Pocket Springs, which are individual springs that reduce the motion transfer that can be felt if your partner is moving beside you. Dunlop Foams provide cushioning comfort when you first lie on the mattress and support your spine during slumber. The top panel includes Climatex Quilt a high loft fibre that gives bounce back between two layers of superior dream foam for a breathable and cooling mattress.

If you need a new mattress on a budget, the mattresses in this collection offers cost-effective comfort. With a number of affordable options to choose from, you can preserve your sleep health and experience a good night’s sleep, every night.

Sleepy’s Bed Fit Specialists can help you find the best affordable mattress for your needs.


Affordable Collection Queen size mattress price range: $499– $2,599


Premium Collection

The Premium Collection features a complete range of luxurious mattresses, designed with stylish patterns, amazing colours and high-end fabrics, such as Tencel, Cashmere, Wool and Damask. These amazing mattresses are crafted with ground-breaking technology such as KulKote and Gel-Infused memory foam, for the benefits of cooling comfort. The Sensorzone spring system has a highly supportive core, that combines the benefits of spring and foam technologies to provide targeted pressure relief from head to toe. Other spring technologies such as Pocket Springs and the Miracoil advance spring system have superior support to provide luxury comfort. Each mattress in the collection combines spinal support and sheer luxury to deliver a truly blissful night’s sleep. Sleeping on any of these beautiful mattresses will ensure that you look forward to bedtime each evening.

Premium Collection Queen size mattress price range: $3,999 – 11,999


Types of Mattress Materials

The price of a mattress is reflective of the different types of technologies and foams that create a supportive and comfortable sleeping surface. You can refer our icons we have created for each one of our mattresses, which demonstrate exactly what technology is in the mattress.

We have compiled a list of pros and cons of the most common mattress materials used to create Sleepy’s mattresses to help you reclaim your amazing!


Active Sense Pocket Springs

Detects and deflects pressure, cradling your head, neck and hips.


  • Australian Made.
  • Suitable for adjustable bases.
  • Minimises partner disturbance (ideal for couples).
  • Good support by distributing your body weight evenly.


  • Due to the number of springs used, they can be heavier than a ‘normal’ mattress and you may need help rotating it quarterly.


Miracoil Advance

Continuous coil mattresses are made from a single piece of wire looped into springs. A z-shaped continuous coil with 5 zone support system designed to reduce back stress.


  • The wire used is thicker and has more surface coverage than most springs in the market providing a higher level of support.
  • For those who like a traditional mattress with ‘bounce’, this spring combines that movement with great support.
  • Good option for people who are hot sleepers.


  • Because the springs move as one unit, there is some motion transfer that will be experienced as one partner moves in bed.



Conforms to the contours of the body to relieve pressure and assist with spinal alignment during sleep.


  • Sourced from natural latex plantations.
  • Outstanding durability and rebound qualities.
  • A natural deterrent for dust mites and bed bugs.
  • Healthier sleep environment which is great for asthma and hay fever sufferers.


  • Very little movement in the mattress which can take some time to adapt.
  • A dense feel which is not likely to please someone wanting a softer, more cushioned night’s sleep.


Memory Foam

Conforms to the body delivering outstanding pressure relief for the sleeper and assists in supporting the natural curvature of the spine, to deliver a feeling of weightlessness.


  • Provides pressure relief to help reduce tossing and turning.
  • Contours to the individual body shape.
  • Memory foam we use is an open cell structure to provide air flow and reduce heat build-up.


  • The use of memory foam in a mattress can be heavy to rotate.
  • Can make you feel “encased” as the foam contours to your body shape.

How Often Should You Replace a Mattress?

The longevity of a mattress depends on several factors, including how well it is made and how much you use it. If you are waking up with back pain your mattress might be contributing to your discomfort. When you are looking for a new mattress and want to try to alleviate back pain or find a mattress that will support your whole body, you should look at the support structure of a mattress.

Next time you are washing your sheets, have a good look at your mattress and look for signs of overuse such as sagging, stains or rips. If any of these signs are present, it is time for a mattress upgrade!

Most high-end mattresses have a lifespan of around 10 years. Taking good care of your mattress will help extend the lifespan. Clean it regularly, use a mattress protector to protect against spills, and rotate your mattress end-to-end every three months to minimise the chance of deep body indentations. Sleepy’s has a range of mattresses that offer a 5-year manufacturer’s warranty while most of our collections offer a 10-year manufacturer’s warranty.

When we deliver your amazing new mattress, we remove your old one free of charge with Sleepy’s free old mattress removal and stress-free service!


What if I am Not Happy with my Selection?

Although we recommend spending at least 15-20 minutes laying on a bed before you buy, this still does not necessarily represent an accurate depiction of how you’ll be sleeping overnight. The good news is, if you have chosen a Sleepy’s mattress, taken it home, slept on it and find you may need a different feel, we can help you reselect with our 60 Night Comfort Exchange Guarantee! For peace of mind Sleepy’s 60 Night Comfort Exchange Guarantee provides customers with the opportunity to exchange a mattress they are not 100% happy with their purchase.