HELP! Memory gel/compare to M7 sn?

If we don’t get a mattress soon, my husband is going to lose his mind and divorce me!!
We fell in love with the sleep number M7. I adore the feel, I love it super soft on 35. I adore the cool gel memory foam layer!
I cannot bear to spend $4000 on a mattress!

We ordered a cirrus from bob’s stores. I panicked and made my husband cancel, since it felt great (almost as great as the M7- not quite, though!) but no cooling gel- and I am afraid to be hot and sweaty! It was also slightly firmer, and I am still unsure, since I LOVED the m7
I have all kinds of neck issues, knee and hip and lower back issues.
So, I need a soft, with firmer underlayer I guess? but not too firm- in fact, every tempurpedic feels too hard to me.
I am looking at the gel dreamfoams on amazon…but are they too firm for me?
any other suggestions?

Hi awoogala,

The first suggestion I would make is to read post #1 here and the information it links to. This is the most important post on the forum and will give you the basic information you need to eliminate the worst choices and focus on the better ones (both in terms of mattresses and retailers or manufacturers).

Before I considered an airbed I would read this article.

Once you have some basic information about mattresses and the materials that are in them … then some local testing at better local manufacturers and retailers will help you decide which materials and combinations you prefer that you want to focus on. Finding the “experts” in your area is the most effective way to make the most suitable choices with the best possible quality and value.

Once you have read the basic information (and I would just scan it not “study” it) … if you let me know your city or zip I’d be happy to let you know about some of the better options I’m aware of in your area.


Yes, I’ve read all of it. I’ve tried 100’s of beds.
We cannot do latex at all.
every other bed hurts. springs hurt, many/most memory foam hurts.
I need very soft. I can handle the very high end pillowtops. but when we buy one, they are horrible within 8 months.
I think need gel- seems to be the only foam that feels really incredible to my body. I have a lot of old sports injuries.
Seriously, the ONLY bed I have been able to lay in for more than a minute without pain is the M7… I just don’t like sleep number as a company, and I think $3000-4000 for an air bed is insanity.
Was just hoping someone here could tell me of a gel memory foam that is as soft as an M7 on a low setting (35)…or another comparable or better air mattress with gel foam on top and a more reasonable price.

At this point, I am convinced I will have to give in and just buy a foam/ with gel foam top mattress, which is why I was looking at the ultimate dream version.

Hi awoogala,

That’s a good thing but your comments indicate that you may not have understood some of the information.

This would be very unusual. While latex is certainly not everyone’s preference and many people prefer other materials better … with the hundreds of different latex combinations and firmness combinations that are possible it would be unusual that someone “couldn’t do it” completely except in terms of preferences (or a type 1 latex allergy which would also be very rare).

As you’ve hopefully read … “very soft” depends on which layers you are talking about (comfort layers or support layers) and is also very relative to the person. The type of mattress you are mentioning will “predictably” break down and soften quite quickly for the reasons you have read about which is why I suggest avoiding them completely and choose mattresses that are just as"'soft" but use better quality materials. A mattress is only as good as the materials in it and so called “high end” mattresses can use some very low quality materials.

“Feel” in a showroom is a very unreliable way to buy a mattress and leaves you very susceptible to the sales training that can manipulate what you feel in a showroom environment. Many different combinations of various materials can match your “needs” for pressure relief and alignment and gel is no different than other types of memory foam or other higher quality foams in this regard. The key is to know what you are lying on and know the materials inside it so you have a much better idea of “why” it performs the way it does.

Unfortunately there is no way to make this comparison outside of “feel” based on your own personal testing. You are not making an “apples to apples” comparison or realizing that you need to compare comfort layer to comfort layer and support core to support core to compare two different mattresses … not everything “lumped together”. Feel, pressure relief, and support are all different “types” or what I call “species” of softness and they are very different from each other. Post #15 here may be worth reading.

If you are able to find out exactly what the materials are in the M7 comfort layers then you could come much closer to “matching” them. Unfortunately they are not likely to be either willing or able to provide this to you. If you had this then at least you would be able to match the comfort layers and you could focus on trying to “approximate” the support core.

I think your fundamental or “baseline” assumptions may not be quite correct and you may be heading in a very difficult or confusing direction until you have a more basic understanding of “why” different mattresses do what they do.

This may be true … but some good local testing with the help of someone that can help you understand “why” different mattresses feel and perform the way they do would still be very helpful no matter what you end up buying. Again I think you may be operating under some flawed assumptions that may make your search a little more difficult and complicated than it needs to be.