Mattress Size Breakdown: Cost per Square Inch

July 21, 2015

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In writing about and recommending mattresses, I have noticed a pattern that is fairly consistent among all makes and models. The usual cost by mattress size comparison is as follows: Queen < King < California King < Full < Full XL < Twin < Twin XL. Like many other products, the value of what you pay for versus the amount you get follows an exponential formula. That is, the amount of mattress you get for the price of a King is more than twice as much as you get from a Twin, but the King usually only costs around 150% as much as the Twin. This concept is much the same as buying in bulk at the grocery store: the more you buy, the more you save. You have to consider the process of creating a King probably doesn’t take twice as long as creating a Twin, and since time is money, that brings the total cost of the two nearer to each other than just considering the cost of materials alone. Overhead costs like shipping the mattresses also don’t work on a linear model, so those costs close the gap as well. It is these factors that seem to support the pattern of larger mattresses being a better value (merely in regards to size), HOWEVER, something strange happens in the mattress market where the mid-size Queen actually tends to be the best value overall.

You can see from the math below that in 3 out of 4 cases, the Queen is actually a better value than the King or California King (and I can tell you from looking at these numbers all day that the Queen size is almost always the best value, more than 75% of the time as represented here). Now from an economics/business standpoint that seems odd. That would be like buying milk at the grocery store, with a quart costing $0.99, a half-gallon costing $1.89, and a gallon costing $3.99. That doesn’t make sense. It would be cheaper to buy two half-gallons than a single gallon. In reality, the gallon would probably cost closer to $2.49 or $2.99, so the more you buy the more you save. So why then are Queen size mattresses usually more cost-effective than the larger King and Cal King sizes?

The reason why is that the Queen is the most popular and most advertised price. Companies can essentially compete for the lowest price on their new model by lowering the cost of the Queen to beat out their competitors, without actually lowering the price of the entire line. And since Queens are the most popular, that means most customers actually benefit from this more aggressive Queen size competition. But if you think about it, the Queen makes sense. No one really needs a King. Couples should have plenty of room in a Queen, and in fact, the Full (also known as the Double) was standard for couples until less than a century ago. So if you care enough to spend extra on the luxurious size of a King, you probably aren’t overly concerned with buying in bulk to save a little value.

On the flip side, companies can charge a little more for specialty mattresses like the California King, Extra-Length Full, and Extra-Length Twin. These more specialized mattresses are less common, and therefore those who need them are willing to pay a little more for them. In fact, many models charge the same for the Queen size and Full XL size, when the only difference is the Queen is 6-inches wider! Unless you physically cannot fit the Queen into your room by a matter of 6-inches, why not upgrade for little to no more cost to you? Again, these occurrences are not without exception. Companies like Stearns & Foster who use different manufacturing processes have a price system that is tiered differently. But look at the numbers when shopping for your next mattress and consider the price of upgrading and the potential benefits of having a larger mattress.

This isn’t meant to say that everyone should be sleeping in a Queen because you get more square inches of mattress for your money–that would likely be wasted money for most single sleepers–but especially if you are shopping as a couple and thinking you will save money by going with a Full or Full XL instead of a Queen, you might actually be saving only $50 or less on something you will likely be using for the next 10+ years. Don’t cheat yourself!

In conclusion, the general order of price per square inch for the standard mattress sizes is as follows: Queen < King < California King < Full < Full XL < Twin < Twin XL

You can find the math and measurements below.


Twin: 39″ x 75″ = 2925 sq. inches

Twin XL: 39″ x 80″ = 3120 sq. inches

Full: 54″ x 75″ = 4050 sq. inches

Full XL: 54″ x 80″ = 4320 sq. inches

Queen: 60″ x 80″ = 4800 sq. inches

King: 76″ x 80″ = 6080 sq. inches

California King: 72″ x 84″ = 6048 sq. inches

Sealy Posturepedic Hybrid Silver Plush

TX: $1,349 / 3120 = $0.4324 per sq. inch
F: $1,399 / 4050 = $0.3454 per sq. inch
Q: $1,574 / 4800 = $0.3279 per sq. inch
K: $1,999 / 6080 = $0.3288 per sq. inch
CK: $1,999 / 6048 = $0.3305 per sq. inch

Q < K < CK < F < TX

Serta Perfect Sleeper Elite Mendelson Plush

T: $797 / 2925 = $0.2725 per sq. inch
F: $846 / 4050 = $0.2089 per sq. inch
Q: $895 / 4800 = $0.1865 per sq. inch
K: $1,196 / 6080 = $0.1967 per sq. inch
CK: $1,196 / 6048 = $0.1978 per sq. inch

Q < K < CK < F < T

Simmons Beautyrest Recharge Ultra Melany Luxury Firm

T: $596 / 2925 = $0.2038 per sq. inch
TX: $648 / 3120 = $0.2077 per sq. inch
F: $648 / 4050 = $0.1600 per sq. inch
FX: $697 / 4320 = $0.1613 per sq. inch
Q: $697 / 4800 = $0.1452 per sq. inch
K: $948 / 6080 = $0.1559 per sq. inch
CK: $948 / 6048 = $0.1567 per sq. inch

Q < K < CK < F < FX < T < TX

Stearns & Foster Lux Estate Point Montara Plush Euro Pillowtop

TX: $2,677 / 3120 = $0.8580 per sq. inch
F: $2,744 / 4050 = $0.6775 per sq. inch
Q: $2,767 / 4800 = $0.5765 per sq. inch
K: $3,149 / 6080 = $0.5179 per sq. inch
CK: $3,149 / 6048 = $0.5207 per sq. inch

K < CK < Q < F < TX


Brand Feature: Stearns & Foster

June 23, 2015

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Since 1846, Stearns & Foster has been a leading manufacturer of luxury mattresses. Every one of their mattresses is built by certified craftsmen, and every piece of material that goes into a Stearns & Foster is rigorously tested to ensure the best durability. By constructing their mattresses out of only the best materials in the industry, Stearns & Foster is able to offer a high level of comfort and quality, earning them recognition as a luxury mattress brand.

[Stearns & Foster Estate East Cape Luxury Plush Euro Pillowtop Mattress]

Since their inception, Stearns & Foster has been committed to focusing their efforts on creating the perfect balance of comfort and support using the most cutting edge and innovative technologies available. Their twice tempered, individually wrapped, titanium alloy coil systems conform to the curves of each sleeper’s body while significantly reducing motion transfer and providing individualized support. This type of coil is the perfect answer for couples who struggle with motion transfer during the night.

Stearns & Foster Golden Elegance and Silver Dream mattresses are the epitome of the luxury brand. They feature the revolutionary Intellicoil Wrapped Titanium Innerspring, which has a dual stage coil-within-a-coil design that provides initial contouring followed by deep, sturdy support. The Intellicoil system expands on the properties of Stearns & Foster’s single stage coil and is far more durable, meaning that sleepers can enjoy enhanced motion separation and support for a longer comfort life. By committing to innovative technologies such as these, Stearns & Foster maintains its coveted position as America’s premier luxury mattress brand.

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[Intellicoil]

If you’re a luxury-minded sleeper, then Stearns & Foster is the mattress brand for you. Search through our wide selection to find the perfect model for your sleeping position and comfort preference; And with a variety of comfort and support options available, every type of sleeper can enjoy deep, healthy sleep on a Stearns & Foster mattress.

US-Mattress offers Stearns & Foster mattresses at the lowest prices on the web, giving even more value to this premier brand. Shop today, and change your sleep-life for the better!


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Brand Feature: Sealy

June 16, 2015

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In 1881, in the town of Sealy, Texas, a cotton gin builder named Daniel Haynes filled a request for a cotton-filled mattress. And then another. And then another. His business grew exponentially from there, leading to many innovations and several patents in the mattress industry. Fifteen years later, Haynes sold his patents to a company that retained the Sealy handle. Soon after, advertising executive Earl Edwards penned the slogan “Sleeping on a Sealy is like sleeping on a cloud,” and with that Sealy mattresses were a national phenomenon.

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Even during the Great Depression, Sealy managed to not only stay afloat, but to introduce a new product–the Button-Free Innerspring. And their innovations didn’t end there: Sealy continued to improve the world’s sleep for decades to come. Milestones include the introduction of the Sealy Posturepedic line, being the first mattress company to display and advertise a king-sized bed, creating an Orthopedic Advisory Board, reinventing the innerspring coil and the box spring, patenting Posture Channels and Pressure Relief Inlays, and the list continues to grow to this day.

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In late 1983, Sealy purchased the Stearns & Foster Company. True to the Sealy heritage, these mattresses redefined luxury and expressed a dedication to craftsmanship and intricate detail, making it a perfect addition to the Sealy family of beds.

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Today, the company owns and operates 25 bedding plants in the U.S. Sealy is the second leading mattress brand in America, and when you lie on a Sealy mattress, you can feel a century and a quarter of mattress innovation working with your body. With popular lines like Sealy Posturepedic, Sealy Comfort Series, and Sealy Optimum, the company offers consumers healthy, supportive sleep at every price point.

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Sealy excels in producing mattresses that employ current and cutting edge technology, spending more than twice as much time and money on research and development than their closest competitor, and more than all other manufacturers combined. They also hold more patents on mattress and foundation technologies than any other manufacturer. Sealy has factories spread out all over the country that specialize in a variety of mattress constructions, including innerspring, latex, memory foam, and gel memory foam, with three dedicated to innerspring and foundation component parts, and one dedicated to producing its very own latex–another first in the mattress industry.

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You can rest assured that with Sealy, you are getting quality products of every type from a trusted and well-established leader in the mattress industry.

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Brand Feature: Serta

June 2, 2015

For the last seven weeks I have researched and written on some of the many technologies Serta has invented and implemented into their mattresses. I was impressed at the level of innovation and determination Serta has given to sleep technology and learned much about the company along the way. This week I will wrap up my Serta mattress technology series with a brand feature on Serta as a whole.

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To start off, Serta is America’s #1 mattress brand. Closing in on a century since its conception, Serta has garnered the trust of millions of customers worldwide. But it is important to note that Serta is not the oldest mattress company out there; In fact, Serta is the youngest of the big three S-brand mattresses. This proves that it is quality, not seniority, that has made Serta #1.

For over 80 years Serta has provided the highest levels of quality, comfort, and safety by consistently investing in revolutionary technologies that meet the widest range of consumer needs. Whatever you are looking for in a good night’s sleep, Serta has the perfect mattress for you.

iComfort is a household name and just one of Serta’s many successful lines. The Perfect Sleeper continually ranks as Serta’s #1 selling brand and remains the only mattress brand backed by the National Sleep Foundation.

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Serta is also the nation’s #1 hotel mattress supplier, so if you’ve recently spent a night in a hotel, it’s likely that you slept on one of Serta’s renowned hotel mattresses. Serta supplies mattresses to several notable hotel chains, including:

  • Best Western International
  • Crowne Plaza Hotels
  • Doubletree Hotels
  • Embassy Suites
  • Hampton Hotels
  • Hilton Hotels
  • Marriott Hotels
  • Omni Hotels
  • Waldorf Hotels

If you’ve recently spent the night at a hotel and envied the mattress quality compared to what you are sleeping on at home, it’s likely you can find that exact mattress among Serta’s Hotel Series of mattresses. It is not unusual for hotel guests to realize the faults in their own mattress after comparing them to one supplied by Serta.

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Beyond their award winning mattresses, Serta is well known for their popular “Counting Sheep” ads. These sheep are arguably one of the most beloved company mascots, especially in the mattress industry. The Counting Sheep only support Serta’s standing as a clever and modern company that keeps ahead of the game on all fronts. When you look at many of Serta’s competitors, you see them taking an approach that encourages an old-fashioned style and ideals that have survived for a century or more, but Serta has pulled away from that and embraced new technologies like memory foam and gel infusion while still offering traditional innerspring mattresses.

Simply put, Serta is the best. They exemplify good business practice, quality products, and an eye towards safety and environmental friendliness. The only question that remains is, are you sleeping on a Serta?

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Cool Action™ Dual Effects® Gel Memory Foam by Serta

April 14, 2015

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As the #1 mattress brand in America, you should expect revolutionary ideas and technologies to come from Serta. Cool Action™ Dual Effects® Gel Memory Foam is just one of many revolutionary technologies brought to you by Serta to help achieve a perfect night’s sleep. Combining memory foam and cooling gel technology, Serta has created something with the benefits of both, and virtually no drawbacks or compromises. I think Serta said it best, so below are informative blurbs from Serta itself from a digital catalog information kit about the ever popular iComfort line:

“Cool Action™ Dual Effects® Gel Memory Foam

Serta’s latest breakthrough in gel memory foam technology is the world’s first dual-action gel memory foam infused with both Serta’s original MicroSupport® gel and our latest MicroCool+® gel. Millions of gel beads gather under the areas of your body that need extra support while also helping the mattress dissipate heat away from the sleep surface.”

“Cool Action™ Dual Effects®

Millions of Serta’s original MicroSupport® gel beads gather under the areas of your body that need extra push back support. Meanwhile, our MicroCool+™ gel features advanced phase change material encapsulated in a proprietary gel designed to efficiently capture, store and ultimately dissipate away heat from the mattress layers above. This unique and exclusive design works to provide more support where your body needs it and gives the material an enhanced ability to transport heat away from the mattress layers above it.”

As you can see, this technology single-handedly solves two of the most prevalent issues when it comes to a good night’s sleep: support and sleeping temperature. Finding the right mattress that uses this technology, with the core and complementing comfort layers right for your Comfort Scale rating preferences and sleep style, and the bedding to go with it, is all that stands in the way of you getting a a great night’s sleep every night for years to come. Did you expect anything less from #1?

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The New Jefferys Bay Mattress

April 9, 2015

Simmons Beautyrest Recharge Hybrid Liberty Point Luxury Firm Mattress

Every now and then, mattress companies make changes to their collections or even to specific mattresses. While it’s not always very noticeable, sometimes these changes can be confusing, especially if not every consumer is aware of the change.

One recent, subtle change from Simmons is the name change for the Jefferys Bay Luxury Firm Mattress. It’s not an earth-shattering change by any means, but it can be confusing to customers who receive a word-of-mouth recommendation for this specific model, and then can’t find it when they search for it. The Jefferys Bay has been renamed as the Liberty Point Luxury Firm Mattress.

Just as it did when it was still the Jefferys Bay, the Liberty Point contains three different kinds of comfort padding layers: AirCool Memory Foam, AirCool Memory Foam with Micro Gel Touch, and Dynamic Response Memory Foam. These all help relieve pressure so that you sleep more restfully. Its individually wrapped coil system gives it better contouring ability, and even allows you to use it on an adjustable base.

Plus, it has a Comfort Scale of 3, which makes it a firm mattress. So you get good pressure relief and a solid, supportive feel, which is an excellent combination for anyone who needs something that feels a little harder than your average plush mattress.

It may not seem like a big deal if you weren’t looking for the Jefferys Bay mattress, but even so, the knowledge could come in handy. You never know.

Sleep Well,

The Snooze Guru


Box Springs vs. Platform Beds

April 7, 2015

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The box spring was so universally used up until recently that the term “box spring” won’t die, even though the technology virtually has. Like “hanging up” the phone, the term has survived even though it is no longer relevant in the literal sense. Although a small minority of companies still produce or refurbish legitimate box springs, mattress and bed technology has largely evolved past the need for them. Most foam, latex, and no-flip innerspring mattresses are now designed with an all-inclusive design that requires only a stable, flat surface beneath it. This can be a foundation, a platform bed, or even the floor! Box springs were designed as part of a team, to work with two-sided inner spring mattress to provide a firm, bottom layer of springs that would work and move with the softer, more responsive springs of the mattress. But modern mattress combine a firm, supportive core with a softer, conforming top layer to achieve the same effect in a single, contained unit. This has made mattresses thicker, and also eliminated the need to flip them since they are built differently from the bottom up than the top down. It has also eliminated the purpose of a separate box spring unit, being replaced by a foundation or platform bed design which usually uses wooden slats directly beneath the mattress. The primary function of a foundation, which is essentially a solid box of wood with metal supports, is to mimic the size and shape of a box spring without the actual springs. The purpose of this it to retain the height of a bed-box spring-mattress setup instead of just using a bed-mattress setup that will likely be significantly lower to the floor. Replace the old mattress and box spring with a new mattress and foundation for a comparable height.

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Platform beds, on the other hand, are designed to need nothing but the mattress on top. This makes for a more sleek, minimalistic, and Contemporary look, while also being cheaper, requiring one less component. Another benefit of platform beds is that they usually provide storage space underneath, as they often have comparable height to a traditional style bed, but without a box spring or foundation taking up space. This is usually replaced by drawers or simply open space. Platform beds also have the advantage of more diverse design options. They can sit an inch off the ground, at traditional height, or higher, with virtually no change in comfort and support. The frames can be plain and simple, opulent and complex, or constructed to look just like traditional style beds. This allows for platform beds to achieve virtually any style, cost less, and be more reliable with less parts to wear out and fail.

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If you are purchasing a memory foam, latex, or no-flip/pillowtop mattress, 99% of the time you do not want a box spring. If you planned to use the box spring from your old mattress, or the seller wants you to buy a box spring to go with the new mattress, do some research and make sure, because chances are the mattress is not designed for use with a box spring. Modern all-in-one mattresses are designed to sit on a solid flat surface, and the springs in a box spring will actually take away from the support and comfort, as well as adding more moving parts to wear out and fail. If a seller is suggesting you buy a box spring with a new mattress, you should A) make sure its actually a box spring, with springs, not just a foundation that is designed to give your mattress the height of a box spring, B) double check that your mattress is designed to be used with a box spring, because chances are it is not, and C) make sure the seller isn’t trying to unload unneeded box springs on you. Very, very few new mattresses are designed to use box springs! Because, why would they? Platform beds get the job done better in most cases, are cheaper for the customer, and provide much more versatility and practicality in the modern bedroom.

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