A mattress is such an everyday item that most Singaporeans don’t think twice about the actual cost of it and how much of a big ticket item it could actually be.
The truth is, a mattress can actually be really expensive. Big brands like Serta, Sealy and more average $500 or more for a simple mattress. If you’re looking for ones that contour to your body, support your spine and all that extra stuff, expect to pay around $700 or so — we’re serious!
That being said, people often forget how expensive it can actually be so much so that when they actually have to buy one, they make an impulse decision.
Here’s a quick guide on the different types of mattresses available and shopping tips and picks to help you lay the foundation for the best sleep of your life.
Well, let’s just say that when it comes to mattresses… you usually get what you pay for.
Non-branded mattresses that you typically find at neighbourhood stores, cheap online marketplaces (like Qoo10) and IKEA, can cost under $500.
However, these tend to provide inferior comfort and wear out faster than their branded counterparts. They’re mostly standard innerspring types (read more about that below) and while they may feel adequately comfy upon purchase, many of these lose their springy-ness in a matter of months and may start to give you aches and pains when they begin to lose support.
That’s not to say all affordable mattresses are bad. If you have a tight budget and simply can’t afford a premium mattress, then the next best thing you can do is to read whatever reviews you can find online for some indication of its quality and lifespan. If you can find one with a decent warranty period, even better.
Now, if you value comfort above all (and can squeeze out some budget for it) then it goes without saying that in general, quality branded mattresses are more comfortable, and give you more bang for your buck.
Well known international mattress brands include Simmons, Dunlopillo, and Sealy, and these typically come with a heftier price tag because of the research and (usually patented) technology that goes into developing these mattresses.
These mattresses are made with superior materials that translate to improved comfort and durability and thus, a longer lifespan. A good mattress should last you seven to 10 years, whereas if you get an inferior one, you may need to swap it out as often as every one to two years.
In recent years, there’s been a rise in the “bed in a box” trend. The term comes from an American brand (literally BedInABox®), and it’s basically just online mattress shopping – you’ll receive your bed in a box, get it?
While the U.S. site doesn’t ship to Singapore shores, there are local online mattress brands too:
- Noa Sleep
Unlike most of the other similarly priced beds, Haylee and Noa’s mattresses actually boast premium materials like memory foam and latex layers.
And because you can’t jump on the beds before swiping your card, these online stores offer a 100-day return guarantee, which is pretty neat in our opinion.
Next, you need to decide what “comfort” is to you. Do you like it springy with extra “bounce”? Or do you like it super soft so it feels like you’re sinking in a sea of sheets? Each mattress type provides varying levels of support and softness, which make for a unique sleeping experience. So in this sense, there isn’t a single “best” type of mattress to buy.
The most common type of mattress is the standard innerspring. These are the traditional coil-types which use metal springs that are connected throughout the mattress. The springs give it the bouncy feel, but also the squeaky noise you hear when the mattress starts to wear out.
The standard innerspring mattress is the cheapest and most widely available option. It’s popular because not only is it affordable, but it comes in a variety of firmness levels. However, it is not suitable for those with arthritic problems. Innerspring mattresses lack support, and are generally inferior when it comes to pressure relief and weight distribution.
Couples should also avoid this type of mattress. Because the coils are all linked, the motion transfer is very high. This means that if you’re bunking with a fidgety sleeper, you’ll feel every movement they make.
You hardly find these at mattress specialty stores anymore, simply because of how outdated this technology is. These are usually the cheap, brandless ones.
The pocketed coil innerspring is a bit like the new and improved cousin of the standard innerspring, and is the kind of innerspring technology that most specialty mattress brands use now.
It also works on a spring system (so it’s got the same bouncy feeling) but the coils are grouped into fabric “pockets” to minimise motion transfer and improve support. Since they’re not linked, when the springs under your partner moves, those you’re sleeping on won’t. This is the most expensive kind of innerspring mattress, but it provides a better sleep experience than the standard one.
It’s relatively affordable, and probably one of the more value-for-money options. If you want to get a branded mattress, the pocketed coil innerspring models are likely to be the cheapest. These will give you a comfortable night’s sleep, but nothing more.
If you’re not the kind who likes “springy” beds, you probably prefer the “sinking” sensation. Memory foam is a premium mattress material that was made popular in recent years.
In terms of comfort, memory foam is one of the top runners. Like a pillow that actually hugs back, memory foam conforms to your body, explaining the sinking-in-your-sheets feeling. It’s also great for your joint health; it provides superior pressure point relief and evenly distributes your weight. Like the pocketed coil innerspring, it has minimal motion transfer.
A thing to note: Although resistant to mould, mildew and dust mites, memory foam is also typically made with harsh chemicals like formaldehyde, benzene and toulene, which can cause reactions in hypersensitive allergy sufferers.
Latex is an eco-friendly alternative to memory foam. That said, few mattress brands in Singapore sell 100% latex mattresses. Instead, they sell hybrids that offer a natural latex top layer with a synthetic base.
Latex provides a type of body-contouring comfort similar to memory, but is usually firmer and less soft. As such, there’s a general consensus that latex is slightly less comfortable than memory foam. Although it provides decent support, it loses to memory foam in terms of pressure point relief and weight distribution.
It does, however, boast almost zero motion transfer and retains very little heat, making it the best choice for couples who want to keep cool at night. Latex is also almost hypoallergenic, and is naturally resistant to dust mites, mould, and mildew without the harsh chemicals of memory foam.
Latex mattresses are available at selected specialty stores, and as mentioned above, usually in hybrid mattresses only. It is the most expensive mattress material, and although obviously a premium choice, is not as value-for-money as memory foam.
The above are the four most common mattress material types, and from them, hybrids are made for even more customised comfort. They feature multiple layers with different layers for those who have unique needs and preferences.
Common hybrids include memory foam-innerspring, and latex-innerspring. This is to cater to those who like the bounciness of the springs, but want it to be soft to touch and have an added element of body-contouring that’s hard for coil mattresses to replicate. Sometimes, the top layer (between your body and the base innerspring) is called the upholstery.
Hybrids are trendy options for those who want the best of both worlds. The price range depends on what it is a mix of, but it hardly comes cheap.
A pillowtop mattress is simply any mattress type with an extra foam pillow layer on top. It’s puffy and soft, and is purely for comfort. Like the hybrid, the price depends on the base mattress material, but is usually paired with the affordably innerspring types.
You probably already know what size you’re interested in, but for convenience, here’s a table with the exact dimensions. Keep a copy of this information handy when you go furniture shopping. Although these are the most commonly used sizes, some stores carry bed frames that follow the European dimensions, which are different.
Single = 190cm x 91cm = suitable for one child or one petite adult
Super Single = 190cm x 107cm = suitable for one adult
Queen = 190cm x 152cm = suitable for two adults
King = 190cm x 182cm = suitable for two adults or two adults + one child
Next, we check out how much branded mattresses cost in Singapore:
If you’re ready to invest in a premium mattress, here are the most popular brands, and what products they carry.
A noteworthy exception to the cheap and non-specialty brand mattress rule is Ikea. Although not a mattress brand with complicated technology, Ikea’s super affordable latex and memory foam mattresses seem to have very good reviews from its users.
Ikea offers memory foam and latex “mattresses” (somewhere in between mattress topper and mattress in thickness) for below $269 and spring mattresses for below $1,200, but they are typically meant to be paired with mattress bases that are an additional $200 to $400.
If you buy it all, it adds up to around $1,500 to $2,000, but technically you can use just the foam mattresses on its own too. With new players like Haylee and Noa in the market, it’s best to consider if it’s worth it to buy a whole set at that price.
A fairly new brand, The Marble Sleep Company designs their mattresses in both Singapore and the United States.
Their latest mattress series, The Maranta Series, was designed through BioMimicry principles inspired by nature.
Inspired by the architectural elements of bee hives, the mattresses in this series have hexagonal cell walls that allow the mattress to wick away moisture and prevents the absorption of heat so that you’re comfortable throughout your sleep. You’ll also get amazing ergonomic support to power you through the next day.
Prices for their mattresses in the Maranta Series range from $1,900 to $2,950 and are available for purchase online here.
Sea Horse is a Hong Kong mattress maker which has gained immense popularity in Singapore. It’s one of the top-selling brands here. Not only are the mattresses of good quality, but they are very affordable at under $2,000 for a king-size.
As icing on the cake, Sea Horse is known for having frequent 50 per cent sales at their 16 shops.
Sea Horse is one of the few brands to carry a full latex mattress (SEA-ALL Mattress). It is the most expensive in the Sea Horse range, with the memory foam Diamond Mattress coming in second.
You can get Sea Horse mattresses on online marketplaces like Qoo10 and Lazada too, but they only seem to carry the low-end non-memory foam Crystal Mattress models that cost under $200 (single) and $400 (queen).
If its name wasn’t a big enough hint, King Koil specialises in pocketed coil innerspring mattresses. The unique part about King Koil’s coil system is that they distribute the pocketed coils according to where needs more support. At the centre third of the bed is where our spines usually rest is where there are the most coils to support the weight. The base layers are all innerspring with other top layers.
Prices start at around $300+, and can go up to almost $2,000. You can get King Koil mattress at King Koil stores and many authorised on- and offline retailers.
The Haylee mattress($699, queen) is hands down the cheapest mattress in the market. It comes with a standard foam base, but features a main memory foam layer that’s topped with an aerated foam upper and a bamboo fabric cover.
The cheap price tag comes with a 100-day trial, as well as a 10-year warranty. Haylee works with Lalamove for fast islandwide courier, so delivery can be as quick as two hours from your time of order.
Haylee’s main competitor is Noa, which has pretty much the same concept of sending out beds in boxes. The Noa mattress, however, is a tad more expensive ($999, queen).
The $300 price difference is accounted for though – the Noa mattress has a slightly fancier makeup, which on top of memory foam, has a latex layer. As mentioned above, latex is among the priciest of materials. It’s also great for keeping cool in Singapore’s hot and humid weather (memory foam retains heat).
Noa’s also has a pocket spring base that Haylee’s doesn’t. The trial period is 100-days as well, but the warranty is for 15 years.
Vono hails from the UK, and is a relatively affordable mattress brand. They focus on backcare, so those looking for an affordable mattress with healthy support can consider this.
There’s the ErgoBed range, which has seven zones of pocketed coils for improved support and a latex top layer. This range was developed with the help of ergonomists from the AEH (Centre for Ergonomics in Switzerland), especially for spinal care.
Vono has no specialty stores, but have 21 authorised retailers in Singapore. For the technology, prices are very affordable at under $2,000 for a top-end king-size mattress.
Leesa is one of the first brands to start the “bed in a box” trend, shipping mattresses to online shoppers. It focuses on memory foam mattresses, with three models: The Leesa Mattress (full memory foam), the Leesa Hybrid (memory foam-innerspring hybrid), and the Leesa Legend Mattress (foam and dual pocket spring system).
The online reviews are impressive, but the American brand does not ship to Singapore.
The price range is under US$2,600 (California king) andUS$1,600 for the smallest size. If you’re lucky, you may find retailers on Amazon that deliver to our shores, but expect limited range and stock.
Also using a pocketed coil innerspring system for its mattresses’ support core, MaxCoil offers memory foam and latex hybrids too.
MaxCoil mattresses cost from under $1,000 to about $10,000 for the most expensive king-size model. It is sold at authorised furniture shops, including the megastore Courts.
On the Courts e-store, you’ll find exclusive online discounts of up to almost 70 per cent. A good hack is to head down to the stores to test the mattresses, before heading back home to purchase it online.
With a tagline like “Born from Space”, it’s quite obvious that Tempur’s star products are memory foam mattresses. (If you didn’t know, memory foam originated from NASA, who developed it for space use.) Tempur claims to be the only brand that’s NASA-approved, so if you are a big fan of memory foam, this is probably as close to the astronaut version you’ll get.
The memory foam mattresses come is a series of four types: Hybrid, Original, Cloud, and Sensation. They differ in firmness and support. The mattresses cost under $10,000, and can be purchased directly from the Tempur website.
Slumberland carries a wide variety of mattresses. The LivinGreen range is mostly latex and latex-memory foam hybrid mattress. The TempSmart range is basically their memory foam series. This UK brand is very reputable, and even supply their beds to international hotels. So if you’re a sucker for hotel beds, you may just find your dream mattress here.
You can get Slumberland mattresses at the six Slumberland galleries and 16 retailers. Retail prices are below $10,000 for a king-size bed, but go on sale quite often too.
Sealy is known for its Posturepedic range, which is designed to help alleviate symptoms of back aches and pains. The brand uses its own PostureTech Coils (innerspring), which are designed to be extra durable and bounce back into shape quickly.
The mattresses are expensive and in the same price range as Simmons, going as high at $10,000+ for a king-size premium model.
However, from the online reviews, the mattresses seem to wear out relatively quickly (most users say under five years). Users have also shared that they have trouble with the customer service team, so bear that in mind. Available at Sealy stores and furniture megastores.
American brand Simmons’ key technology is known as BeautyRest, which is their pocketed coil system. Most of their mattresses feature these as the base material, whether with or without a foam, latex, or pillow top.
The memory foam options are the brand’s own AirCool and AirFeel foams that dissipate heat and keep things cool. They also feature the GelTouch foam technology, which distributes the weight evenly.
Simmons mattresses are very pricey, ranging from about $2,000 for a single to $12,000 for a king. You can purchase it from the official website, or at any of the 26 stores and authorised retailers.
A leader in latex mattresses, Dunlopillo’s signature range is the LatexWorld. There are two models, the Eco and Pure, both of which are fully latex (without innerspring base). The Eco has better body contouring, while the Pure is firmer.
A LatexWorld Pure king-size mattress will set you back around $12,000 at retail price, but because it’s so expensive it also gets bigger discounts. You can get it at the Courts’ e-store at up to 60 per cent off ($4,900+). You can find the cheaper single beds at $600+ when on sale and around $1,500 normal price.
Caring for your mattress is important. Not only does it provide you better comfort, it also saves you a lot of money. Here is a quick list of the do’s and don’ts.
- Rotate your mattress regularly
- Use a mattress protector
- Air it regularly
- Sit on the edge of the bed
- Jump on the bed
- Use the straps on the side of the mattress to carry it
Rotating your mattress allows it to wear out evenly, extending its lifespan. Also, never use the straps on the side of the mattress to carry the whole thing. They’re meant for adjustments only. Using them to bear the full weight of your mattress will damage them. Always carry your mattress from the bottom, and if it’s too heavy, get help from another person.
If your mattress is not of an allergen-resistant material like latex or memory foam, get a waterproof mattress protector to protect your mattress. This way, your mattress is safe from liquid spills and nasty bugs, and all for under $100. If you’re not fussy about brands, you can even get them at under $50 from online stores like RedMart, Qoo10, and Lazada.
For those who only have the budget for innerspring mattresses, you can consider getting a mattress topper. Mattress toppers are add-on layers and are generally cheap to buy. They’re versatile in that they come in many materials. For instance, if a memory foam-innerspring hybrid is out of the question, you can get a brand-less memory topper and strap it on your innerspring mattress. Of course, it won’t feel as good as the real deal, but it’s a lot cheaper too.
As mentioned above, you can get mattresses from the brand stores, furniture megastores, and online marketplaces. The brand (and specialty) stores are typically the most expensive, as they sell at retail price. However, it’s always a good idea to check the shops out to get a good feel of the mattresses you’re considering. The last thing you want is to get a good online discount, but realise you hate the feel of the mattress when it reaches your doorstep.
Once you’ve tested your options, it’s time to hunt for it online. You can find it at either the brand’s official website, or third party retailers. This could be furniture sites like FurnitureSG and FortyTwo.SG, e-stores of local furniture megastores like Courts and Harvey Norman, and even marketplaces like Qoo10 and Lazada.
Text: Eugenia Liew/MoneySmart, Additional reporting: The Singapore Women’s Weekly