Thirty years ago it was common practice to flip your mattress every few months to prevent indentations from forming in any particular part of the bed that consistently supported the most weight. But with today’s high-tech manufacturing processes and improved overall mattress quality, it’s not exactly clear if mattress flipping is even advisable anymore. Furthermore, a large portion of today’s mattresses are pillowtop, so what would happen if you were to flip the pillow side over and try breaking-in the other side?
To help answer these types of perfectly rational questions (and make sure you get the most miles possible out of your new investment), we’ve put together the following general rules of thumb when it comes to whether you should flip or rotate your mattress:
Should You Rotate Your Mattress? If So, How Often?
Yes, even today’s one-sided mattresses should be regularly rotated in order to prevent any one section of the bed’s surface from withstanding more abuse than another. How often a mattress should be rotated is slightly trickier to answer.
In general, you will want to rotate your mattress more often when it’s brand new than you will after it’s been broken in awhile. A good rule of thumb is to rotate it once after the first two weeks of sleeping on it, then begin a regimen of rotating it once every 2-3 months from there on out. The reason for rotating it early on is that the proper break-in period needs to run its course. If your partner weighs more than you do and they consistently sleep on the opposite side of the bed, then that side of the mattress is likely to break-in faster.
TIP: Don’t forget to rotate your foundation at the same time that you rotate your mattress since it will be enduring stress in the same areas as your mattress.
Should You Flip Your Mattress?
The quick and easy answer is no, but there’s a good reason as to why not. In the past, it was usually the case that the comfort layers resting atop your mattress springs were made out of leftover blends of cheap textile materials that would naturally break down and wear thin over time. After all, mattresses don’t just have to stand up to the weight of your body every night; they also have to withstand years of built up sweat, moisture, body oils, and dead skin cells. Especially in the case of old-fashioned textiles, this type of abuse added up over time.
Today’s mattresses, on the other hand, are comprised primarily of foam comfort layer materials that take much longer to break down and are generally far more resistant to sweat, etc. That’s not to say that plenty of manufacturers aren’t using cheap grades of foam that will break down much faster than some of the better quality and higher density foams on the market.
This same variation in quality is generally true when it comes to mattress springs as well. While the majority of manufacturers use thin-gauge wire springs that are more susceptible to permanent indentations over time, the most comfortable and longest lasting mattresses will be constructed from heavy-gauge tempered steel wire. Tempering steel wire greatly increases its strength and longevity, yet few manufacturers do it because of the added cost.
Make Sure It Meets Your Standards
At Sherwood Bedding, we believe every bed should meet three key criteria. First, it should be so incredibly comfortable that you actually begin dreading travel because hotel beds are so disappointing by comparison. Second, it should feel just as comfortable after many years of use as it did during the first few months you slept on it. Last, it should be made of sustainable, high-quality, natural materials that you can feel good about spending thousands of hours in proximity to over the course of a decade or more.
If you haven’t yet had the chance to explore Sherwood Bedding’s entire lineup of brands and mattress types, we invite you to visit a retailer in your area. Regardless of price, design, or firmness level, we pledge that every bed we make meets the three criteria above (and then some).