Mattress shopping is an object of dread for most — and rightfully so. The experience is generally characterized by great confusion, fruitless trips to retailer after retailer and salespeople who won’t take no for an answer.
To avoid all of this, some consumers are turning to the Internet. In the past couple of years, a slate of “bed-in-a-box” companies have cropped up to offer clickable alternatives to the slog of finding a mattress in storerooms. These mattresses are delivered straight to your door in a compact box, and you’re often given a trial period of a few months to decide whether you want to keep it.
Online mattress sales make up 5 to 10 percent of the current market, according to Kenny Kline, founder of mattress review site Mattress Clarity. “My projection is that they will reach 30 percent in the next five years,” he said.
Without the costs of renting a showroom and hiring salespeople, many of these websites also boast reduced price tags. Most mattresses online sell for less than $1,000, whereas in-store products can go for two or even three times that.
To help you with your next mattress — whether that’s for a first apartment or just as a replacement for an old, worn-out model — we checked out a handful of brands on the digital market today. (In all cases, these mattresses can be placed on a platform or a box spring.)
Cost of a queen: $850
The first online mattress retailer to get major attention, Casper is considered the industry standard. Its latex, memory and support foam mattress was developed through dozens of prototypes and sleep trials. “We were a catalyst in this shift because we took a really innovative approach from the beginning,” said Casper chief executive and co-founder Philip Krim. He noted that the company is loved for its quirks, such as the little gifts they send their customers after a sale or the bike couriers who deliver to Manhattan homes free.
Cost of a queen: $890
Derek Hales of mattress review site Sleepopolis calls Leesa a “breath of fresh air in the mattress industry.” The top layer of foam gives the mattress a cooling effect, to ensure that sleepers don’t overheat in the middle of the night. “When you initially lie down you can immediately feel a softness and subtle hug around your body,” he writes in his review.
Cost of a queen Love Bed: $799
Nest Bedding markets its “Love Bed” as the ideal mattress for amorous activity. “It’s specifically designed and optimized for great sex as well as great sleep,” Hales said. Made with natural and organic materials, the Love Bed’s top latex layer gives it a nice bounce, while the latex foam adapts quickly to your body’s contours for a restful slumber. The company’s other big seller is its Alexander Signature Select, which it says offers a balanced feel and a choice of three firmness levels.
Cost of a queen: $600
Kline recommends Tuft & Needle as one of the most affordable mattresses on the online market. A twin bed can be had for as little as $350, while the cost of a California King rings in at just $750. These prices are hard to beat, especially considering the polyurethane foam mattresses come with free shipping and a 100-day trial period.
And a newcomer worth checking out:
Cost of a queen: $390-$800
Launched this April, Safavieh’s “Dream” spring mattress series caught our eye because it’s one of the few shippable non-foam mattresses out there. Jonathan Yaraghi, Safavieh’s creative director, explained that the pocket springs eliminate motion transfer, so that you won’t wake up when your partner joins you in bed.