How Do Mattress Trials Work?

by Véronique Raymond
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No matter what in-store or online mattress retailer you’ve purchased your new mattress from or what type of mattress it is, you’ll have a mattress trial included with the purchase price.

It is one of the standards of the industry in addition to long mattress warranty periods.

A sleep trial period can vary between retailers, but you should never buy a new mattress up front without first testing your sleep quality on it.

Let’s explore why mattress trials are important and how they work.


Why Is A Mattress Trial Important?

Taking advantage of a mattress trial is almost as important as choosing the right type of mattress in the first sleep. You might love the feel of different mattresses in the showroom, but briefly laying on a bed in a store isn’t the same as sleeping on it night after night; it’s a whole different experience and should be treated as such.

Every new mattress will have its own break-in period depending on its type (innerspring mattress, memory foam mattress, hybrid mattress, etc.). Different sleepers will have a unique experience on each type of mattress, and it will take some time for you to get used to a new mattress and know whether it is really right for you.

A new bed can be a major adjustment, especially if you suffer from back pain or you’re a hot sleeper; if you’ve purchased a special kind of mattress to help alleviate these issues, you may need a greater amount of time to ensure it will be effective long term. On a less important note, you’ll be able to ensure that the mattress fits your bed frame as well.

Your sleeping position is also an important consideration. If you spend a lot of time in one position, it will be easier to know whether the mattress is comfortable for you or not. If you are more of a restless sleeper, an extended night trial may be more appropriate. It is also entirely possible that on the right mattress, you won’t be a restless sleeper any longer.

If you have a sleeping partner, a sleep trial will also give you the opportunity to test the motion transfer and ensure you have a balance of what you both need to get a great sleep.


How Does A Sleep Trial Work?

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Sleep trials are fairly simple exchanges that allow you to get a feel for a new bed before committing to the purchase. Most mattress brands will require you to put a deposit down on the mattress upon pickup, and some may even ask for the full amount. However, if you return the bed, you are guaranteed a full refund. The best mattress companies will have a really streamlined return process if that’s the route you decide to go.

A sleep trial’s entire purpose is to give you ample time to decide if a new mattress is right for you. If you are switching mattress types, this is even more important. Both mattress firmness and composition can affect your sleep, so if you are shifting from a spring mattress to a memory foam or from a firm mattress to a softer one, the sleep trial will tell you everything you need to know about what you like in a mattress.


How Long Is A Free Mattress Trial Period?

Mattress sleep trials will have a minimum number of nights set at 30, but some mattress companies will go so far as to give you a 365-night trial. By far the most common trial length is a 100 night trial, as this period ensures that you have enough time to adjust to a different mattress and break it in enough to know how it will feel long-term without pushing the official purchase too far into the future.

It is recommended that you keep your old mattress for the entire duration of the sleep trial; if the new mattress isn’t comfortable long term or doesn’t help the problems you’ve purchased it to help, you’ll be thankful that you can easily swap them out and start sleeping on something comfy and familiar right away. The return policy will expire immediately after the final night, so if you plan on returning the mattress for any reason, make sure you do it with enough notice to get your money back.

Nectar sleep, DreamCloud, Saatva, and Awara are some of the companies that offer a 365 night sleep trial; you can have full confidence in the quality of their bed with faith like that in their products.


Is A Mattress Trial Risk Free?

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Mattress trials can be completely risk free, but it isn’t a guarantee. Some companies will require you to pay return shipping fees or even pay a restocking fee for returned mattresses. However, many companies will also offer free returns and won’t charge you anything if you return it before the final night of the trial. It is therefore important to be aware of the policy of the individual store so you aren’t caught unawares when it’s time to return the mattress.

It is a good idea to use a mattress topper/mattress protector to keep the mattress in pristine condition until you’ve decided that you are keeping it; even risk free trial structures can leave you liable for damage costs.



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