Though a plush, cloud-like mattress might sound nice to many people in theory, there are definitely certain individuals that love a truly soft mattress more than others. Maybe an extra plush bed is just your preference, or maybe you need one because of the way you like to sleep.
If you're not sleeping well and you think your mattress is the culprit, you might be considering if you need to upgrade to something more plush. Let’s dig into what constitutes a “soft” mattress, and who might get better sleep from switching to one.
A soft mattress is one that has that “sink” factor, or one that hugs you and conforms to your shape when you lie down. To achieve this, a soft mattress will typically have multiple layers of padding in the form of microfiber or memory foam. A well-made soft mattress will contour to your body’s natural curves and adapt to them as you change positions. It may leave a temporary impression of your body when you get up.
There are a few types of sleepers that may benefit from a plush bed.
Done properly, side sleeping can be one of the most beneficial ways to snooze. But without the right mattress, it can cause you to wake up sore. When lying on your side, your hips and shoulders in particular protrude and experience extra pressure from the mattress surface. To counteract this, you’ll need a bed with enough give that can gently mold to those curvatures so they’re not under additional strain. And when those areas are allowed to rest tension-free, your spine and hips can align properly, meaning you’ll wake with less soreness. Therefore, the best mattress for a side sleeper will be soft and supportive – like our Cloud Memory Foam Mattress.
Since mattress firmness is all relative to the individual sleeper, adults weighing less than 130 pounds may feel differently on top of a mattress than an average-weight individual. If you’re on the lighter side, you will sink less into your mattress. This means that a softer bed doesn't actually feel overly plush, but often just right. Similarly, a petite person might liken the feel of a firm mattress to sleeping on the floor.
If you often wake up with aches and pains, it could be that your mattress isn’t supporting you properly. Pain in the hips, knees, or shoulders could mean that your bed is putting too much pressure on those areas as you rest. A softer mattress will give you enough cushion beneath those sensitive areas without the excess strain that can throw them out of alignment.
If you’re really committed to making your mattress feel soft without purchasing anything new, it’s best to first see if flipping or rotating it will do the trick. Some mattresses are flippable, meaning you can turn it over (like a pancake!) and sleep on either side. It’s possible that the other side feels softer to you, so this is worth a try.
If your mattress is made to instead be rotated 180 degrees (like a Zinus), by doing this you may find that one side of the bed feels a bit different than the other. For some, this could be all it takes to achieve a softer feel.
Toppers are a cost-saving and often very effective way to soften a mattress. Typically made with memory foam, this layer sits right on top of your mattress’s surface (and beneath your fitted sheet) to give the bed a more enveloping feel. Toppers come in a variety of profile heights, but generally a topper will feel softer the thicker it is.
If your mattress is resting on a foundation or base that’s completely solid, you may want to consider switching to something with a bit more give. Avoid foundations that have a solid mattress platform without slats, and definitely steer clear of putting your mattress directly on the floor. Believe it or not, these kinds of bases can make a mattress feel firmer. If this is what you’re currently resting on, consider trying a slatted base or box spring that will allow the mattress a little more flexibility and potentially softness.
If you're still not getting the results you’d like after trying these tips, it could be time to consider buying something new. Generally, you can use the following guidelines to determine if it’s time to move on from your current mattress:
If you feel like a soft bed won’t be your cup of tea, our How to Choose the Right Mattress blog can help you decide what mattress type will fit your sleep position and preferences.
Find out if your mattress could use a firmness upgrade.
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