Monday, October 21, 2013

The Future

This is more of an advertisement than a traditional blog, and we will get back to talking all things sleep in future posts.  Late last week, we were approached by our landlord.  The pharmacy next to us is looking to expand, and our space fits the bill best.  We will be moving our store.  Here's how we see the timeline.  Over the next 30 to 45 days, we will be reducing our inventory drastically.  We are intending to sell our display beds and pillows as well.  It only makes sense to start everything fresh.

With the sudden approach, we do not have a new store lined up.  That will take some time.   Since we have worked most all days in the last three years, first we need a vacation.  That does not mean we cannot meet the needs of our customers, existing and in to the future.  We also want to take time to evaluate what makes sense as our next move.  We have seen where our sales have come from, and that will help.

There is no real timeline on reopening, at this point.  We will continue to process orders on a timely basis, and we are able to accept new orders as well.  It also gives us a chance to reduce expenses in the short term improving the value we can offer our customers.  The economy is still ailing, and political turmoil has hindered economic growth, so lower expenses make sense.


We do appreciate our customers, and we will be there for you if you have questions or problems.  We will work with our vendors to ensure you have no issues.  We are a different type of mattress store, and that is why we usually call ourselves a bed store.

We intend to be back in our local market!  We appreciate our neighbors, and look forward to helping them sleep better, now and for years to come.  Interested in a great Comfortaire bed or Sleep Harmony bed?  Visit our web site for information on how to order.  We ship across the United States, and still offer the best value in sleep.  Perhaps you would like to help us as we help you?  That is possible as well by visiting our crowd funding promotion at Indiegogo.

Sunday, October 13, 2013

Gel Infused Foam

The history of bedding is replete with innovation and enhancements to make a great night's sleep attainable for the masses.  Consider that the earliest humans had no bedding stores, so they had to make do with things that were available to them.  Our early ancestors slept on the ground, and there are some today that as push back to the sales process still say they could do that.  Early sleepers slept on grass or moss.  Then came the elevated beds, to get some distance from some vermin that were getting in to the materials.  In the middle ages further enhancements included putting these materials in a sack, or using feathers instead of grass kept it more tidy.  In the late 1800s, not that long ago, innerspring replaced these materials to give a more consistent feel, and a longer lasting bed.

Then the improvements on springs, enhanced the sleep surface.  Cotton batting, and later foams softened the feel of this technology.  In the 1960s, experimentation began with other technologies, first to hit the market was water.  Water offered a pliable surface that would mold to the individual sleeper, and these alternatives had moderate success.  Latex foams were also coming in to their own with some beds becoming all foam.  In the late 1980s two new technologies were introduced, memory foam and air technology.

The technologies often overlapped, foam on top of springs, soft side water beds, waveless water beds are all hybrids of different technology.  Memory foam found success and the innovator, Tempurpedic has grown vastly in size.  Air also found acceptance, and firms like Sleep Number and Comfortaire were born.  Today there are four basic technologies, and they have all enhanced their products over the years.  As an example, Tempurpedic combined their foam with air, and Sleep Number and Comfortaire have found ways to add memory foam to their products.

A few years ago, Serta introduced the first gel foam bed to the market.  It was an almost instant success, and bred a number of copies.  The Serta bed was gel infused, offering a cooler sleep surface.  Cool sleep has become the new goal, in fact we had a customer in our store the other day with a thermometer in hand to see how the beds warmed, or didn't warm more specifically.  Our store recently added a gel latex bed to our mix.  Right now, we can only find it from one manufacturer, but with success, we are sure more will be coming.  Do they work?

All things made by man are in some ways imperfect.  However, these materials seem to be offering a cooler night sleep than previous beds.  Our customer, also found that some of our materials did very well in his test.  The thing is, if you think you can turn off the air conditioner and rely on the bed to keep you cool, it won't.  And many of the new fabrics are what are called temperature regulators.


These temperature regulators, like Outlast, are designed to regulate temperature, not always cool.  When Outlast first hit the market some sales people would encourage customers to feel the cool, which when you first lay on them they are.  Outlast pulls heat from the sleeper and stores it.  When the metabolism starts to lower, it releases the heat back, regulating temperature.

Getting back to the gel products, we found that the gel foams stay cool to the touch for an extended period.  The gel seems to repel heat producing a cooling effect.  At first there was only gel memory foam.  As we noted earlier, we introduced a gel latex bed recently.  The latex in this particular bed is talalay latex, which has always been a product that encouraged air flow.  When the gel was added it produced a great feel, and stayed reasonably cool.  Some prefer the feel of latex, it is similar to the feel of the recliner in the family room.  Rather than sinking deeply in to it, it does offer posturization, but springs back nicely when you move.

These materials will help the average person sleep a bit more comfortably, it is important to choose which one based on your personal preferences and needs.  There are some people who may get hot even with these great materials, there is hope for them as well.  Some add ons have been marketed that actually allow for active cooling, or heating.  The most popular, and we feel the best, is circulating water that is either heated or chilled in a device under the bed.  These are energy efficient semi conductor machines that are small, yet effective.  There is also one recently offered using air to warm or cool the mattress, this seems like it might be good, but this early model has limited range of temperature change, and is not thermostatically controlled.

What ever your needs, now may be the best time to find a new bed, these awesome materials make it hard to believe the technologies can get much better, but we are sure they will!  Even if you are not in the market right now for a new mattress, stop by and try some of these materials, learn what is available to make it easier when it is time to replace your mattress.  What ever your needs are, as always, we hope you....

Sleep Well!

Thursday, October 3, 2013

Mattress Toppers, Are They Worth It?

We all see them in major retailers.  The memory foam mattress topper.  They seem to be inexpensive, especially compared to a new mattress, but are they worth the money?

The quick answer is it depends.  It depends on what you intend to use them for, and this is critical.  If you are looking for a mattress topper because you have an old mattress with little support left.  If you are looking for a topper because you have heard good things about memory foam mattresses, the answer to that question is no.  But why?  While memory foam is very comfortable, and offers a great night's sleep, it can't do it all by itself.  The reason memory foam mattresses are gaining in popularity is because of the system, not just the memory foam on top.  The major memory foam bed makers have anywhere from 1 to 4 inches of memory foam as the top layer.  Under this layer is the support structure for the bed.  Most use more foam, just a different kind, and mostly latex for the support in the mattress.  And that is specifically why the answer is no.  If you have an older bed, which is no longer comfortable, putting a layer of foam on top will not correct the support issues of the mattress.  Of course it will be softer, but it will rarely solve the problems you are attempting to solve with the topper.

So when is a topper a good idea?  OK, we all want to save some money right?  And that is the primary driver for the topper sales, extending the mattress to avoid buying a new one.  That is the wrong way of thinking of it.  If you are looking to save some money with a topper, and get a good night's sleep, consider buying the topper when you buy a mattress.  We hear the question now... How does that save money?

Let's use our store as an example.  We sell a very nice air technology bed with 4 inches of memory foam as the comfort materials.  A queen set is $2999.  We also sell an entry level bed with a couple inches of latex comfort material.  A queen set is $1150.  That's a wide gap.  Let me just note that getting the memory foam option from the factory will provide a higher quality memory foam than is generally available, especially at discount stores.  That being said, for a couple hundred dollars you can get a 2 inch topper, and it will work well with the lower priced bed, just not as long, and not as conveniently.  The big point is that you have saved money over the more expensive bed, and have great support for the topper.


To be completely honest, the topper will not last as long.  You may have to replace that topper every 5 years.  Either of the beds mentioned come with a 25 year limited warranty, and can last for much longer than that.  25 divided by 5 is 5, so the total cost of going the topper route is going to be around $1000 over 25 years.  if you add that to the initial cost of the bed, it nears the price of the more expensive bed, especially considering the foam in that bed is twice as thick, and a higher quality foam, and generally a bit more dense.

It's up to the customer in our store.  We want to sell the support end any way.  With the proper support, you may not even need the topper to begin with.  And our entry level beds in queen start around $500, so just a few hundred dollars more than the topper alone.  The support of the bed is what eliminates, or at least minimizes, aches and pains.  It's the support that helps our customers sleep all night and awake refreshed.  It is the support that will limit tossing and turning.  It is the support that is important in a new mattress, and the first thing to go in spring beds.  That is why they want you to replace every 8, while we say this may be the last mattress you will HAVE to buy.

At any rate, that is our take on mattress toppers, it depends on where you are financially as to whether it makes sense for you.  But again, toppers will not fix a broken support bed.

We hope that helps...

Sleep Well!