Do Not Disturb: 6 Secrets to Finding the Perfect Mattress and Pillow
- Oct 24, 2023
Ever wake up feeling like you’ve been body-slammed by a MMA fighter? Or perhaps you spend your nights tossing and turning like some kind of washing machine. Well, don’t hit the snooze button just yet—we’re about to reveal 6 secrets to finding the perfect mattress and pillow so you can sleep like a baby. #nogatekeeping
1. No need to feel paiseh when trying out your mattress and pillow
Design: The Local Inn.terior
We've all been there—buying a mattress and being too paiseh to lie down and try it out. So instead, we do the silly thing and sit and test it with our butts. But that isn't how we sleep, folks! So don't be shy, build up your thick skin and lie down for at least 5 whole minutes to try out your mattress and preferably in the way you sleep every night. If you are getting the mattress with your partner, test it out with him or her.
Now that you’ve mustered the courage to lie down, what should you look out for? The sleep gurus at King Koil Singapore suggest making sure your body feels aligned and balanced. There should not be any stress on your spine or other parts of your body.
Pro tip: Choose your mattress before selecting your pillow. Also, try out the pillow on the mattress you're planning to buy if you can. This way, you can get a true sense of how they both feel together.
2. Determine your sleeping style when choosing your mattress and pillow
Design: The Interior Lab
Side sleeper: This sleeping position elongates your spine and helps to reduce snoring. You need more pressure relief at your shoulder and hips. Choose a softer mattress that will help relief the pressure and opt for a higher pillow that is able to fill the gap between your neck and shoulder e.g. a contour pillow. Pair with a bolster or knee pillow to support the gap between both legs.
Back sleeper: Possibly the best sleeping position to help reduce or prevent back pain. Pick a mattress firmness level that doesn’t feel like the lower part of your body is sinking down. Pair it with a mid-high pillow that fills the gap at your neck, preferably ones that elevates your upper body just so slightly.
For those with back issues who sleep on their backs, King Koil Singapore recommends using a thin pillow under the knees to elevate them slightly.
Stomach sleeper: Not the ideal sleeping position as it will put strain on your neck muscles, arm and shoulder joints, so try to change if you can. If not, pick a firmer mattress that will help support your spine and prevent you from sinking down, and pair it with a thinner, softer pillow that will help keep your neck and head in alignment.
King Koil Singapore's mattresses follow a comprehensive firmness scale to help you find your perfect level of mattress firmness:
The restless sleeper: A larger bed can give you more room to toss and turn and change positions throughout the night. It also minimises disturbing your partner. Find a mattress firmness level that isn't too firm or too soft (think like Goldilocks!) since both extremes aren't ideal for changing positions—medium-firm is a good choice. Try to steer clear of full memory foam mattresses as they can make you feel like you're sinking in, making it harder for you to switch positions. In terms of pillow choice, get one that can support both sleeping on the back and the sides, something like this from DPM (Dr Pillow and Mattress):
3. Your weight matters
We fully embrace body positivity, but when it comes to selecting the perfect mattress and pillow, weight does play a role. Heveya, a local latex mattress provider, suggests starting with a "soft" firmness level if you're on the smaller side, while a firmer mattress is recommended for those on the heavier side. To help you make the best choice, here are their recommendations based on your weight:
|Weight||Mattress Firmness Level||Reasoning|
|Less than 55 kg||Soft||Soft density sinks and conforms considerably in order to cradle and provide comfort for petite-weighted sleepers|
|55 to 85 kg||Medium||Medium mattresses sink less to provide an enjoyable balance of comfort and support for average-weighted sleepers|
|More than 85 kg||Hard||Firm mattresses have virtually no sinkage and minimal conforming which translates to exceptional support for heavier-weighted sleepers|
Height also matters. For instance, the weight distribution and pressure points for shorter and heavier sleepers will be very different from taller and heavier sleepers.
If you need a more tailored solution, DPM (Dr Pillow and Mattress) offers fully customisable mattresses and pillows. Their mattresses for instance can be made with different levels of softness and firmness throughout, depending on your height, weight, and where the pressure points of your body are when you lie on the bed. Their pillows can similarly be custom-fit to the measurements of your shoulder width and neck curvature.
4. Choosing the perfect mattress and pillow to enhance both you and your partner's sleep
If you're a light sleeper and your partner tends to move a lot during the night, there are mattresses that can help reduce motion transfer. One option is memory foam, although it can sometimes retain heat (more on that at point 6). Another good alternative is a pocket spring mattress. These mattresses have individually wrapped metal springs near the top, with foam for support and comfort. Since the springs aren't connected to each other, they reduce motion transfer.
For couples with very different firmness preferences when it comes to mattresses, there are brands like Heveya and DPM (Dr Pillow and Mattress) that offer a solution. They can customise the firmness on each side of the mattress, so you can have a bed that is tailored to both of your preferences.
Heveya even has a bed base with adjustable slats, allowing you to change the firmness level of your mattress whenever you need to. This is not just for long-term customisation, but also for temporary adjustments. For instance, your partner may be experiencing back pain temporarily, but you feel fine. You can keep your side of the bed as it is, while your partner can adjust their side of the bed base to a firmer level of firmness to alleviate their discomfort. After recovery, the bed base can be adjusted back to a previous level of firmness.
Another option, if you're looking for something more affordable, would be to use two separate single size mattresses side by side and then cover them with one bedsheet. This way, each person can have their own mattress while still sharing the same bed.
5. Wake up feeling back pain? Time to treat yourself to a new mattress!
Design: Starry Homestead
One of the key things to watch out for to determine if it’s time to replace your mattress and pillow is when you wake up feeling tired and achy (or even in pain!) and it’s not because of exercising or an existing injury.
King Koil Singapore shares that a good quality mattresses can typically last between 10 to 15 years, while it's a good idea to change pillows every 3 years.
Some other signs that indicate your mattress and pillow are due for change include:
- When they start turning yellow or have worn out or frayed edges.
- When they become lumpy, saggy or feel noticeably different from when you first bought them.
- When it takes you longer than usual to fall asleep every night.
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6. Hot sleepers: Pick a mattress that will help bring down your body temperature
Design: Ovon Design
In a Straits Times piece, Dr Shirish Johari, a Principal Resident Physician at Tan Tock Seng Hospital, suggests that the best temperature for sleep is around 20 to 22 deg C, although it will differ from individual to individual. If you don’t sleep with the AC, make sure you choose a mattress and pillow that allow for breathability and can wick away heat.
For folks with higher body temperatures, invest in a cooling mattress and pillow, usually ones infused with gel. This Marquis King Koil mattress from The Royal Collection has a micro-gel layer that helps to regulate temperature on the sleep surface.
Mattress made from memory foam are notorious for trapping heat, but if you like how it contours the body, opt for ones that have an open-cell structure which increases the material's breathability and helps to dissipate heat.
To further optimise heat dissipation, choose the right bedding. Pick ones made from natural materials like cotton and linen or even semi-synthetic fibres derived from natural sources such as bamboo or tencel (which is made from eucalyptus fibre). Not only do these options provide breathability, but they also offer a comforting softness and a smooth touch.
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