The Truth About How to Buy and Clean a Mattress

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This is a Sponsored post written by me on behalf of Better Sleep Council for SocialSpark. All opinions are 100% mine. Affiliate links are used.

When my husband and I got married five and a half years ago there was one thing that we knew we were going to buy for ourselves, and buy brand new – a mattress. After years of sleeping on college apartment, used mattresses, and growing up sleeping on used mattresses, I wanted something that would be great for sleep and great for my back.

Back problems tend to run in my family. My dad had back surgery more than a decade ago and still has lingering back issues to this day. Pretty much everyone in my family has frequented the chiropractor, especially as Scoliosis runs in our family.

As a mother now of three children, the sleep I do get is very, very important. I don’t want to be tossing and turning to fall back asleep; that’s wasted minutes of sleep! And the less sleep the less patient I am with my children the next day. The less sleep the more snappy I am with my husband. The less sleep the less focused I am at writing blogs, driving well, paying attention to my children’s cues, and more.

Sleep is mega important in my book, despite my secret wish that we didn’t have to sleep so we could squeeze more into our days. The better sleep helped me do better when I was in college and then when I was raising twins! I even attribute our new-mattress buying decision to the awesome sleep I got even when I was pregnant! Yes, I am one of those obnoxious women who could still sleep at the end of her pregnancies, even with twins floating around in there. I really think great mattresses are important!

And The Better Sleep Council would tend to agree with me.

Better Sleep Month – Get on Top!

May is Better Sleep Month and this year, the Better Sleep Council is telling everyone to Get on Top… of a new mattress that is! The campaign encourages consumers to stop making excuses for their old, non-supportive mattress and to get on top of a new one to experience the positive difference a new quality mattress can make in getting a better night’s sleep, and thus improving quality of life, because faking it negatively impacts sleep and health.

The Lowdown on Mattress and Your Sleep

In order to confidently make an investment in yourself and your health by purchasing the mattress of your dreams, it’s helpful to know more about those mattresses and your sleep.

Poor Sleep = Poor Health

50% of all Americans say they would feel somewhat or extremely frustrated if they lost an hour of sleep at night and it wasn’t by choice. Clinical educator and sleep expert, Terry Cralle, explains that poor sleep results in irritability and exhaustion, and sleep deprivation can negatively affect your immune system and led to unhappy things like weight gain, high blood pressure, and diabetes. Just to name a few.

Even infants and children need high quality sleep. Maybe the above mentioned irritability or crabbiness of those teenagers and tots is a result of their mattress! If a mattress isn’t comfortable for you to sleep on, it’s not good enough for your child either.

However, it’s also a fact that a good mattress can improve your quality of life.

Sleeping with a Spouse

If you sleep with a partner (I hope it’s your spouse!), then consider a mattress that allows each of you enough space to move easily. Couples sleeping on a “double” may think they have enough room, but each person has only as much sleeping space as a baby’s crib. We currently sleep on a queen-sized mattress but would love a King – it would make family snuggle time in our bed much easier and much more comfortable.

However, 60% of women say their sleep environment keeps them awake more than their sleep partner. You can check out this infographic for even more facts about sleep and your health.

Aging Mattresses

A mattress that has been used for five to seven years may no longer provide the comfort and support your body needs. A scientific study conducted at Oklahoma State University echoes this in its findings that participants with mattresses 5 years old – or older – reported significant improvements in sleep quality and comfort when sleeping on a new mattress. This research linked a new mattress to better sleep quality and a reduction in back pain, stiffness, and shoulder pain due to sleeping when compared to mattresses five years or older. Be sure to check out a guide for how to get better sleep.

However, I have learned a few tricks on how to make a mattress last longer.

How to care for your mattress

How to Properly Care for Your Mattress

Thanks to my month-long stint as a Kirby vacuum saleswoman, I learned a lot about mattresses, because as part of our sales-pitch, we showed potential buyers how to vacuum their mattresses and educated them on why they should vacuum their mattress.

Many people admitted that they had never, ever, vacuumed their mattress. Most didn’t even think about why they should. Some had been sleeping on their mattresses for 20 years. But, you should vacuum it in order to keep your mattress clean, just like you vacuum other pieces of furniture in your home.Did you know you should be vacuuming your mattress? Because I didn't! Totally going to now.
I am so thankful that when we bought our mattress we also bought a bedding cover. This zip and block anti-allergen breathable waterproof mattress encasing would be even better than the one we have because it also covers the bottom of your mattress, and your pillows. Mattress protectors help you prevent stains and take care of your mattress easier (mattresses don’t exactly fit in your washing machine). You should regularly wash these mattress and pillow encasings with hot water as often as you wash and change your sheets. And your pillows should either be washed in hot water or just generally replaced every few months or so.

But, even with a mattress encasing protecting your bed, it’s still a great idea to vacuum your mattress every few months as part of a proper care routine for your mattress. I haven’t done it before prepping for this post, but that is in part because we didn’t own a Kirby vacuum until July of 2013. (I know… still had plenty of months between July and now!)

But, now you are wondering why does a Kirby vacuum make a difference? First of all Kirby’s have the best suction power. No, really they do. And this makes Kirby vacuums perfect for vacuuming mattresses because they can clean all the way to the bottom of your mattress (about 14″ deep). You don’t need to flip over your mattress (although you still may want to; it’s also not a bad idea to vacuum the box spring and sides of your mattress).

So, if you don’t have a Kirby, borrow one, or buy a used one. We scored our old G6 Model off Craiglist for $100 complete with all the accessories (like the awesome carpet shampooer). And then vacuum your mattress, especially if you have never done it, or if you have never used a dust mite mattress protector. It’ll help your health, as well as help the health of your mattress. Even without a Kirby vacuum, vacuum it!

And don’t forget to flip or rotate your mattress every few months too.

It's Better Sleep Month - So is it time for you to stop faking it with your mattress and get on top of a new one? Here's info to determine if it is. #ad

So, is it time to stop “Faking It” in the bedroom?

But, ultimately, it just might be time; it might be time to stop faking it in the bedroom, with your mattress of course.

Are you taking medication to help you sleep at night? Do you drink a cup of coffee in the morning or have to drink caffeine throughout the day in order to function? Do you settle for an old, unsupportive mattress and blame other things for not sleeping well at night? If this is you, it may be time for you to stop faking it once and for all.

If you need to know if is indeed time to stop faking it in the bedroom, then be sure to check out the Better Sleep Council’s Replacing a Mattress Guide.

Get on Top this Memorial Day Weekend

So, if you’ve decided that investing in a new quality mattress is the right thing to do, now what?

Everything a consumer needs to know about mattresses, including mattress buying guides, comparison shopping, caring for a mattress and mattress disposal should check out how to buy a mattress. It even includes the SLEEP test and the EASE test. I know many are raving lately about the mattress by Purple

Now get on top of some mattresses this Memorial Day weekend when the sales are hot!

I know that when my husband and I bought our mattress before our marriage, we were unprepared shoppers. We didn’t know what to look for. We only knew everything felt amazing compared to our college apartment mattresses. And we certainly didn’t know how much mattresses should cost. Since having children and looking for other furniture pieces we’ve realized we definitely overpaid for our mattress.

We found that many warehouse furniture stores, as well as dedicated mattress stores, carry top name-brand mattresses and at amazing prices. Plus, many run sales during holidays like Memorial Day weekend.

Also, haggle the price. Through even simple hesitation we received bed sheets and the mattress protector for free. Prices can be always be lowered on mattresses!

$50 VISA Gift Card Giveaway for My Readers! {ENDED}

In addition, The Better Sleep Council is giving away a $50 VISA gift card to one of you, my readers! To enter comment below with your sleeping troubles. How would a new mattress help? This giveaway is only open to US residents who are 18+. The contest ended 5/30/2014. IZEA will select a winner. Read the official rules for more details (and more giveaways).

Good luck and Happy Mattress Shopping!

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  1. Lisa Brown says

    My husband bought a very firm mattress without me there and the thing is too hard for me, he loves it. I did put a topper on it to help make it more comfortable. A new mattress would be great 🙂

  2. says

    Our mattress is horrible – our 4 year old has a better mattress than ours. If I fall asleep on my side which is how I like to sleep I will usually wake up with my arm asleep since the mattress is so firm. We definitely need a new mattress that is a little on the softer side.

  3. Mami2jcn says

    My mattress is so lumpy I can never get comfortable. A new mattress would definitely help my back.

  4. Kelly D says

    I toss and turn too much at night and a new mattress would help because I would stay comfortable when I am sleeping, so I wouldn’t wake up as much.

  5. Rebecca says

    My husband is very tall and doesn’t fit well in our bed just him, let alone with me in it with him! We spend a lot of time tossing and turning… These cleaning tips are great. Especially since we have a hand-me-down mattress. It’s pretty old and I’m sure gross!

  6. Jessie C. says

    I have trouble sleeping due to back pain and our old mattress makes it worse. A good night sleep and a nice mattress are very much needed.

  7. says

    Great article!! I do vacuum my mattress several times a year but didn’t realize I should be doing it monthly. Since I sleep alone, (read – no sweaty guy in the bed!) would my king-size mattress last longer?

  8. Neiddy says

    My mattress is a little bit old and needs more cushion, this sometimes causes me discomfort when I sleep, I really believe that with a new mattress I would sleep better.

  9. Amber Conaway says

    I toss and turn all night long from back/hip aches, I’ve even tried the pillow between the legs and doesn’t help lol totally putting a fund together to save up for a new mattress! I think having a new and better mattress would support my body better!

  10. Dawn Sweeps says

    A new mattress would really help us. I have something neurological happening now (yet to be diagnosed) and am in horrible pain, especially at night. Anything that would help us would be great!!!

  11. Diana Kang says

    A new mattress that would stay cooler would definitely help me get some rest since my boyfriend gets so hot at night!

  12. Alyssa says

    A bigger mattress would be wonderful. My 2 year old ends up in bed with us every morning but that usually means my hubby ends up on the couch!

  13. Jennifer N says

    My husband has not slept in bed with me for over 9 months and he has been on the couch downstairs! Mostly because he is the best husband ever knowing that my daughter and I sleep better in our bed without him in it. We have more room to move around especially since I am still nursing. Would love to buy a bigger mattress so hubby can come back to bed!

  14. Sandi says

    My husband has a bad back which leads to rough night sleeping. And he snores… So I hope that a new mattress would alleviate that and then I could sleep too!

  15. Carolsue says

    I new mattress would help me because I seem to have a lot more back pain and general aches and pains after I get up in the morning.

  16. Laura m says

    My mattress is very uncomfortable. It’s so stiff and it’s very disappointing to wake up on a hard mattress. A new mattress would be amazing.

  17. susie king says

    A new mattress would help back problems so I would feel rested in the morning. Thanks for the opportunity.

  18. Susan Christy says

    My mattress is old and sags in spots and it’s hard for me to get comfortable enough to fall asleep, so I am always tired, it seems.

  19. Emily Detterer says

    I would love to win this contest so I can afford to get my boys new mattresses. They have had the same beds for about 10 years; my oldest still uses his original mattress (almost 18 years old bed :\ )

  20. says

    We bought a new mattress maybe 3-4 years ago, after having a hand-me-down mattress that was EMBARRASSINGLY old. We opted for a memory foam-type, and we were talked into a more firm mattress that we now regret. My mother-in-law gifted us with a very comfy topper and now we sleep without back problems! It’s so tough buying a new mattress. How can you ever really know if it will work until you’ve slept in it at least a month?! And p.s. it never occurred to me to vacuum my mattress until I read your post, so thanks!

  21. Linda says

    My husband gets up numerous times every night (and wakes me up often doing so) and constantly complains about needing a new mattress because it’s not cushioned enough and very uneven. Our mattress is easily over 15 years old and a new mattress would let him (and me) get a better sleep!

  22. Elle says

    I have scoliosis which causes a lot of back pain daily in my lower back as well as the middle/center where your spine is and also between my shoulders where your neck meets your back – it’s awful. This is why I rarely sleep on my back. I am always forced to sleep on my side or my stomach because my mattress is just not cushioned enough for my back – it’s painful and uncomfortable. I really do need a new mattress, one that is very soft and has a lot of cushion.

  23. Chavonne H says

    I wake up multiple times during the night and a good mattress would help me sleep through the night.

  24. Tabathia B says

    I have insomnia and bad back due to a difficult pregnancy, sleeping on a hard lumpy mattress makes it hard to sleep and a new mattress would ensure a good night sleep

    tbarrettno1 at gmail dot com

  25. says

    I bet a new mattress would help my back and hip pain! And this has reminded me I need to vacuum my mattress again, the last time I did was over a year ago, I remember because I was hugely pregnant and in my nesting phase! I’m sure it was quite the site! 🙂

  26. janetfaye says

    A new mattress would be a big help in letting be feel more comfortable when I go to sleep. I toss and turn, and sometimes get up a lot trying to get comfortable on my mattress.

    janetfaye (at) gmail (dot) com

  27. unknown says

    Was reading it until I got to “If you sleep with a partner (I hope it’s your spouse!)”
    And I will not finish.
    It’s none of your business who anyone is sleeping with.
    Some people like me don’t believe in marriage and can be in a great and very long term relationship without it.

    • says

      And I do believe in marriage. And sex after marriage. So, I will continue to promote it on MY blog. It IS my hope that it’s your spouse sharing your bed with you. It’s your business if it is not, you’re right. But, as a Christian, it is my job to spread the truth that marriage is important, as well as sex after marriage. Sorry, if you don’t like that. God doesn’t either.

  28. Michelle Pishotta says

    You got an amazing deal on your Kirby! Mine is one year older than yours and I paid 800.00 for it. I have had it for 18.5 yrs and only had to do maybe a 100.00 worth of maintenance. I have had to replace the stick things for the bare floor coil thing. But other than that one of the best purchases we ever made! We just bought a new mattress 12/23/15 and we bought the best mattress cover/pad they had. It is water proof stain proof and dust mite and dead skin cell proof, !

    • says

      I know! The guy who sold it to me was a young guy living in an apartment and his mom had given it to him, and he must not have realized how awesome it truly was. 🙂 I’m still loving it. Use the various attachments often. And I hope your new bed lasts a long time.


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