About Our 3-Star Scale
Let’s start with the fundamentals. You might’ve noticed how each of our attributes, besides firmness, are on a 3-point scale. One star or one dollar sign indicates a below average rating, two stars or dollar signs indicate an average rating, and three or more symbols indicate an above average rating.
There are so many mattresses in the online industry with similar characteristics, like 3-layer all-foam mattresses, for example, and a large portion of them seem to uphold the same standards. With that said, there are outliers who either perform better or a little worse than average, and we made sure to illustrate our team’s thoughts on the mattress’ performances through our scales.
Explanation Of Body Types
Every mattress attribute is rated based on body type, because your body weight plays a large role in how you’re going to perceive a particular mattress. When it comes to how pressure relieving, supportive, and durable a bed is, performance will be heavily influenced by the amount of pressure you exert on the surface of a mattress. Here is a breakdown of how body types are categorized:
- Petite Body Types – Around 150 lbs or less
- Medium Body Types – about 150 to 230 lbs
- Heavy Body Types – about 230 lbs or more
The heavier a person is, typically, the softer and more pressure relieving a mattress will feel. And on the flip side, if you’re a petite individual, mattresses tend to feel more firm and supportive.
Jumping into our first mattress characteristic, this is how well a mattress relieves tension around the hips, shoulders, and other pressure points along the body. In general, softer mattresses offer increased pressure relief, while beds with firmer profiles typically don’t perform as well in this category.
We gave beds a higher than average rating in pressure relief if they felt softer than a medium firmness level for a particular body type, and a lower rating for the ones that feel firmer.
Back, stomach, and combo sleepers, along with heavier body types all benefit from a mattress that offers ample support. To judge how supportive a bed is, we typically look at two features of the mattress; how firm is it, and what’s the construction like?
Beds with an all-foam construction like Casper or Leesa will be supportive enough for petite to medium-sized sleepers, but performs better than average under heavier body types. Hybrid mattresses with innersprings, on the other hand, offer plenty of support for all three body type categories. In addition, beds with firmer profiles tend to offer more support than soft mattresses, so firmness level was also taken into consideration when we assigned our Slumber Scales.
As such, if a mattress had an all-foam construction and a medium firmness level, we gave it an average score for petite/average body types and a below average score for heavy individuals. This is because a bed with a “5” rating will feel more like a soft “3-4” for a person over 250 lbs and the all-foam construction isn’t quite supportive enough.
Though, with that said, we did give all-foam beds like Casper, who has a special zoned support design, a slight one-up when it comes to this rating. Reason being, the middle layer is firmer under the back where the body needs more support, and this is the only all-foam mattress we made a slight exception for.
We judged a bed’s durability off how well it was constructed. If it has a 2-layer all-foam construction, it’s rated below average because it simply won’t hold up in the same way a thicker mattress will. For hybrid beds like Avocado or ones with back-to-back coil designs like Avocado were given above average ratings. Beds with 10” all-foam constructions, on the other hand, were given an average rating because most foam beds in the industry will last about 8 years.
Nobody likes a squeaky, creaking mattress. This tends to be a problem with older mattresses containing broken innersprings, and sometimes your bed frame can be the culprit behind annoying sounds. But we did our best to rate how noisy we thought each mattress was, assuming you have the proper mattress frame to support it. Many modern mattresses, especially ones with complete foam constructions, don’t make a ton of noise and shouldn’t contribute to poor quality sleep.
Mattresses come in a range of prices and we typically separate them into three categories. Using the queen size mattress price as standard:
- Budget or Below Average -We gave a bed a below average rating if it was under $800, whether it was slightly cheaper than average or a budget mattress like Allswell.
- Average – We’ve found the average online mattress tends to be between about $800 to $1,250.
- Luxury – Whether it be luxury or affordable luxury, we gave beds above $1,250 a rating of above average.
Again, please note these are based on queen mattress prices since it’s the most popular bed size in North America.
Our firmness rating is based on a 1-10 scale, with 1 being ultra soft and 10 being very firm. Keep in mind, we did our best to designate firmness rating figures based on each body type, but each weight range is wide enough that your interpretation might be slightly different from ours (so please don’t send us angry emails if you think we are .5 off). With that said, we have over 10 different members on our Slumber Yard team who test these mattresses, and offer insights so we can have accurate perspectives of firmness levels from each body type.
We appreciate you giving us the chance to help you find your perfect mattress, and we hope you have a better understanding of how/why we rated these mattresses the way we did. Unlike some of the other sleep review sites, we actually have 150+ mattresses on hand at all times to test at our leisure, and base our reviews/ratings on our own personal experiences. Thank you for coming to the Slumber Yard, and feel free to check out our Deals Page where we can save you a good chunk of change on your next mattress.