Looking for good mattress store


I’m in need of a new mattress…desperately. Due to allergies I’m thinking of going with a memory foam. I live in the Tampa, Fl area. Do you know of any good mattress stores? I know going to a large chain store isn’t going to give me the best value.

Any help or suggestions is GREATLY appreciated.

Hi Jjpsmile,

Post #143 here includes the better “possibilities” in the Tampa area that I’m aware of :slight_smile:

It may also be worthwhile reading the overviews in the mattresses section of the site to give you some idea of some of the different materials and constructions that can be used in a mattress and the pros and cons of each. Scanning these (I wouldn’t “study” them) can also help you ask better questions which can lead to better choices.

I would also suggest reading this article which will save you some time and give you an idea of which outlets may be the most knowledgeable and helpful. It will also give you a sense of what to expect if you pay them a visit and help you choose between them.

Hope this helps.


Thank you so much Phoenix. Seems like I need to do some real studying here. I know the importance of a good mattress, just didn’t know how much work it would be to find one, lol!!! Thanks for getting me started, I’ll be sure to let you know what I end up with and if you have any memory foam suggestions…I’m all ears. :wink:

Hi Jjpsmile,

There are really two approaches you can take. The first is to become the expert (which can be really frustrating and time consuming) and the second is to just gather enough general information that you can find the experts and tell that they know what they are talking about and whether they are “on your side”. The “mattress people” will tend to talk more about the specific benefits of certain materials and tell you the “why” behind the “what”. The marketing people (that you usually find promoting major brands in mass market outlets) will usually be more focused on marketing stories and “sales techniques” that create a sense of urgency (with things like fake sales) and guide you towards the mattresses that they want to sell you instead of what you would really need and prefer in the long term.

If you are committed to slow response materials such as memory foam or gel memory foam over fast response materials like high quality polyfoam, microcoils, or latex … then the most important thing is to make sure that the memory foam you look at is at least 4 lb density (and 5 is higher quality yet) and that it is certified as being non toxic (or at least American made if there is no certification available). Other than this … there are many different types of memory foam (firmer/softer, faster or slower response, more or less breathable, more or less temperature sensitive and many others) so use your testing to find the type and “feel” of memory foam that you prefer. Because memory foam can also be somewhat risky in thicker layers (they can allow your heavier parts to sink in too far over the course of the night for good alignment) … I would also start to be cautious if a mattress had more than about 4" of memory foam. Of course these are not absolutes and there are many variables (which someone with experience and knowledge can help with) … but they can at least act as general guidelines.

Keep in mind too that a mattress has two main functions which is pressure relief and spinal alignment and everything after this is preferences. All the “benefits” in the world have little value if a mattress doesn’t provide these two main functions in every night use no matter how comfortable they may feel in a store. Each of us is also unique in some ways in our needs and preferences so the specifics of a mattress that will provide these for any individual will depend on the many different body types, sleeping styles, and preferences. Here again … this is where an “expert” with the knowledge and experience to “fit” you to a mattress and that is working with you in real time can be your best friend when you are shopping for a mattress.

Take your time … good quality and value is available every day of the year from the better manufacturers and outlets and is not dependent on sales … and make sure you make the best possible choice in terms of quality/durability of materials and value instead of the “stories” that tell you little about the real quality of a mattress.

If you get stuck … feel free to post any questions you may have along the way :slight_smile:


Hello - I am new here. What a wonderful source for information!
Prior to 2 days ago, shopping for a car and dealing with car salespeople was my least favorite thing to do…NOW, shopping for a mattress is my least favorite thing to do! I am so overwhelmed! Your information is wonderful but there is a lot to absorb.
My current mattress has been wonderful - bought it 12 years ago (been wonderful for about 10 of those yrs. LOL). I bought a top of the line set when an area furniture store went out of business. Got the whole king set plus frame and brass headboard/footboard for $250…Officially the best bargain of my life. Being that I haven’t shopped for a mattress in 12 years and knowing what I spent - you can imagine my surprise when I cannot find a king matt for under $1000.

I was so upset because I managed to save $1000 and thought I would find something! I have been looking at Labor Day “sales” that are supposed to be 40-50% off and still cost $1300. What in the world is up with that?!?! I liked both the Sealy Optimum and Serta i-comfort (or something like that). I wish I saw this site BEFORE I went shopping!!!

I live in Zanesville, Ohio. So I am not too far from a few of the Amish places you have mentioned, Columbus not too far either. Is there anyplace in Zanesville that anyone can suggest??? It is hard for me to get away from work to take a whole day to travel to c-bus.

Pheonix - you are my idol! You have an amazing understanding of all this and I have so much respect for that. Thank you for having this site. I know you don’t like to recommend specific mattresses but would you tell me what mattress you have for yourself?? Might be worth it for me to check out what such a knowledgeable person has chosen for themself.

I am a heavier person, husband too…I have 2 hertniated lumbar disks - so back pain a good bit. I am 5’10" and hubby is a little taller…both weigh over 200# - sorry just can’t bring myself to share exact weight.

please help me narrow things down a bit…I am sooo overwhelmed! It is to the point where I think I would rather have back pain then go to anymore stores and look at beds.

Hi Gabodi,

I can completely understand this and there are many who share your thoughts. Mattress shopping can be a maze inside a jungle of confusing and sometimes misleading information where it is difficult to know who and what to trust.

The most effective approach is generally to gather some basic information about mattress materials and construction and then to do some initial research into the better manufacturers and outlets in your area. This way you can “find the experts” that will lead you in the best direction rather than having to become one yourself.

The most important part of finding the best quality and value mattresses is to work with factory direct manufacturers or local “sleep shops” that are happy to tell you the quality specs of every layer in the mattresses they sell. Without this information … there is no way to know the real quality of a mattress and you are making a “blind” purchase. This would be similar to buying furniture that was made of particle board but had a beautiful veneer so it looked great and was charging “real wood” prices. It may look great and perform well in a showroom but if the outlet either couldn’t or wouldn’t tell you what it was really made of, there would be no way to know how long the look and performance would last and you would be in for some surprises once you discovered that it wasn’t as durable as you hoped.

Even very low cost and quality materials can feel great in a showroom but the “showroom feel” won’t last for nearly as long as higher quality materials. The better outlets also have the experience and knowledge to help you “fit” a mattress to your needs and preferences and your budget so that you end up with a mattress that not only works well at first … but will work just as well for a long time. They understand the importance of providing you with meaningful information that can help you make educated choices and real comparisons between mattresses besides just how they “feel”. Without this … most consumers end up buying the best marketing story rather than the best mattress. This article will give you some guidelines about how to “interview” an outlet before you visit them to make sure they are open and transparent about what they sell (and these are the exception) and that they are more focused on quality, value and service rather than sales and marketing.

There are a couple of factory direct outlets that are fairly close to you in the Columbus list in post #2 here.

Original mattress factory has an outlet in Heath. They are fully transparent about the materials they use in their mattresses, make latex, memory foam and innerspring mattresses, and have very good quality and value.

mattressmartohio.com - This website is for sale! - mattressmartohio Resources and Information. has an outlet in Reynoldsburg which is the closest one to you.UPDATE: They used to make their own mattresses but unfortunately they no longer do and the they now only carry major brands (which I would avoid) along with Restonic and Solstice which are the only two manufacturers I would consider here but make sure that they can provide you with the foam specs before you make a purchase here.

Things have changed a lot since you last bought a mattress and the “fake sales” that just change their name but never end are one of the more common tactics used by the mainstream industry. Prices have also changed significantly and your budget will put some limits on your selection but the goal is still to buy the best quality and value no matter what the budget. The better outlets sell mattresses with high quality and value in every budget range every day of the year and don’t use fake sales to create a false sense of urgency and “fear of loss” to sell mattresses. As you can read in the guidelines here … these types of sales are usually a reason to run rather than a reason to buy.

If you find the better outlets … then finding a mattress that “fits” your needs and preferences and has the quality and value that you want and will “match” your budget is a fairly simple process. At the more common mass market outlets and chain stores … almost anything you buy will be based on a “story” rather than meaningful information and will be lower quality and value.

Hope this helps … and feel free to post any questions you may have along the way,


Thanks for the info!
Do you think I can even find a decent mattress for $1000??
I looked at some of the brands you mentioned and they were $2000 and up

Hi gabodi,

OMF for example has a range of their upper end traditional innerspring mattresses here that are in the $1000 range for a King set.

While your budget won’t allow for more premium mattresses such as all latex or some of the more premium memory foam mattresses … there are lots of good quality and value choices in your price range.

There are also some excellent online choices offered by some of the members of this site in that price range as well which you can see in post #21 here if you are comfortable with an online purchase. There are some good memory foam and latex hybrid choices there which are better quality and value than anything you would find in a mass market outlet.


I am still overwhelmed…LOL
I think I would like to try latex. I will come up with more in my budget to spend than $1000 if I need to. I don’t want my back to hurt like this anymore.
I went to DFW and looked at the Carolina Mattress Guild mattresses. The salespeople knew very little and they said the company doesn’t send them much info about them. So, I don’t know what they were made of - except they kept saying “soy.” Is soy a good or bad option? Seems like they had latex over inner springs mostly.
Can anyone just give me suggestions of mattress brands in Ohio that would be a good place for me to start??
I read the info about weight and sleep positions - even more confused.

I read since I have herniated lumbar disks and I’m heavy, so I should look at a thick, firm comfort layer with a firm support layer. But then later I read if you are curvy (which I am) or sleep on your stomach (which I do along with on my side) you should look for a softer, thinner comfort level. Needless to say - I’m confused. The beds I try all feel similar - some a little harder and some a little softer.

I need a new bed - but am about ready to stop looking because I am confused and overwhelmed…
Can anyone please just suggest some mattresses they like, perhaps people with features and back problems like me? Just so I can get a starting point.


Hi gabodi,

There are really only 3 different types of foam you will likely encounter in a mattress which is memory foam (and the variations such as gel memory foam), polyfoam (and variations such as soy foam), and latex (and it’s variations such as natural or blended and Dunlop or talalay). All of the foams in your mattress will almost always be one of these three types.

“Soy foam” means that a small part of one of the chemicals used to make the foam (usually under 20%) came from an oil derived from a soy bean instead of a petrochemical source. It is still just polyfoam and you can only tell the quality of polyfoam (and memory foam) by knowing it’s density. Higher density is better quality and more durable (although this is the exact information that is the most difficult to get). You can tell the quality of latex by knowing whether it is blended or all natural and if it is Dunlop or Talalay.

Before you visit any store … it’s important to call them first to make sure that they can and will tell you the information about the foams that are used in their mattresses. Some stores insist on this when they order from their manufacturer and some don’t. Unless you are at a store that either has this information or can get it … and understands how important this is so you don’t come across people who “roll their eyes” when you ask for it … it’s best not to visit the store at all unless the information you need is available elsewhere or online. For example … if the person you were talking with couldn’t tell you exactly what soy foam is (and their explanation will hold up when you know the facts as well) … you are at the wrong store. Connecting with the “experts” who have the knowledge and experience to really help you (instead of just “sell” you) will save you more time, effort, and frustration than anything else you can do when you are starting out. You will also end up with a better mattress that is more suitable for your needs and preferences in both the short and long term. The information on this site can help you to “recognize” the experts (when they talk about things that are similar to what is on the site) and is not meant to make you into an “expert” … unless of course this is someone’s goal in which case it would be a longer and more involved process than just reading some articles no matter how in depth they are.

In other words … I wouldn’t visit a store unless I first “interviewed” them along the lines of this article or had other information that indicated that they are knowledgeable and transparent about the mattresses they sell (such as being a member of this site or reading information that they are willing to do this). The goal is not to become an expert … just to find them.

"Brand information or buying something similar to someone else are among the worst ways to find your best mattress. Brands mean nothing because the brand label can be attached to any type of mattress … regardless of the quality of the materials or whether the particular model is suitable for you. Buying a mattress that “worked” for someone else also doesn’t take into account the nearly infinite differences in needs and preferences between different people. The most accurate way to find YOUR best mattress is to work with an expert and use your own experiences and their knowledge and help to make your choices.

At a better outlet (or even a better online outlet) where you have the guidance of someone who really knows what they are talking about … your odds are much better of finding something that has good quality and value and is suitable for you than almost anything you could buy in an outlet where the staff doesn’t have the most important information and knowledge you need to make good choices and comparisons. First shop for knowledge and experience … then shop for mattresses in other words.

The mattress you choose will affect both how you sleep and how you feel when you are awake for many years. Take your time and make your best choices rather than allowing “overwhelm” or “frustration” to make your choices for you. This is exactly what happens in many cases when people shop at places where the staff knows more about sales techniques than they do about their mattresses … and can lead to some very unsuitable and poor value choices.

While the “showroom feel” and performance of a mattress is important … it’s even more important how a mattress will feel and perform in “real life” after 90 days (when it has broken in and you have gone through the adjustment period that is part of every mattress purchase), after a year, after 5 years and beyond. “Mattress people” who sell mattresses understand this and can help you understand this … most salespeople who know little about the mattresses they sell don’t.

It really can be as simple as that once you’ve made the “right” connections.


Hi Gabodi -

I just wanted to chime in to say the process can be overwhelming at first. Take your time! It took me months to finally make up my mind and decide. I took the time to allow the information to sink in and make sense all the while testing all kinds of mattresses - even the mainstream options from “regular” chain mattress shops - just so I could truly compare.

Do not make your decision while you are overwhelmed. And test, test, test. If you can at least find places to try out various types of high quality mattresses made of the various materials and construction techniques (latex, memory foam, coil, etc.) then you might be able to find something equivalent online for a lower price. There are all kinds of high quality online options (which Phoenix linked to above) who would also be willing to talk with you over the phone to discuss your needs and desires and help to steer you in the appropriate direction. I am confident you can find something suitable for you and your budget.

Good luck in your search!

Well…shopping for a mattress is still on my list of least favorite things to do. but I am hanging in there. :S
I can’t find latex mattresses around here, in my town anyway. I was looking online and Brooklyn Bedding offers some great prices for their products online. I think I would like to do that but I need to find some latex mattresses to try out.
Eventhough you don’t recommend the big major brands, are there any you can recommend I could try just for feel? That might be easier to find in my area?
OMF has some but with coil spring bases…would that be similar in feel to an all latex mattress??
Any other ones you can think of? Even mattress mart seems to only carry one kind of latex mattress.

Hi gabodi,

OMF has two all latex mattresses (except for an inch of polyfoam in the quilting layer similar to the Ultimate Dreams). The “coil spring” you are mentioning is actually not part of the mattress but is the box spring they use under the mattress. These mattresses can go on a box spring (and this is how they are usually set up at OMF) or they can go on a solid base as well (such as an adjustable bed or a no flex foundation). While these may not match the “feel” of the Ultimate Dreams because latex comes in many firmness levels and different layering (and the Ultimate Dreams uses a high quality polyufoam core instead of latex) … they will at least give you a sense of what latex feels like in a comfort layer.

Mattress Mart carries several latex mattresses including the Pure Latex Bliss Beautiful and Nature which are both all latex mattresses (like the OMF) and they also carry the Celebrate which has 5" of latex over polyfoam.

Between these two places you should have a good sense of the overall “feel” of latex in different types of firmness and layering. Your experience and preferences with these can be a useful guideline for an online purchase (that would keep you in your budget).


Oh, ok…I was going by their website and just didn’t see the options at MM. I saw Latex Bliss but they are very expensive.
Wouldn’t a latex core be better than a polyfoam core? Especially for a heavier person??
Sorry for all the questions but this is still confusing to me.
Thank you

Hi Gabodi,

Yes latex is a more expensive material than other types of foam but Pure Latex Bliss has better value than many other mainstream manufacturers or mattresses that are sold at mass market outlets that use lower quality materials (including lower cost types of latex that is used in much lower quantities) and sell for higher prices. Of course they are not in the same value range as many other smaller manufacturers but I would certainly choose them over most other mainstream mattresses in terms of quality and value.

Regardless of their relative value though … when you are testing mattresses … the price of the mattresses you are testing is not as important as the fact that they give you a chance to experience different types of materials and once you know what you prefer … then you can begin to look for the best value in mattresses that use these materials. Any mattress can be your “playground” when you are testing … regardless of price.

Actually this is the other way around. Latex is the most durable of all the different types of foam and even innersprings and is one of the highest quality materials that can be used in a mattress. There is more about this in the pros and cons of latex here. Higher quality materials in the comfort layers (the upper layers of a mattress) are especially important for those who are heavier because the upper layers are the first to soften and degrade with heavier weight and constant compression and for those who are looking to reduce the cost of a mattress purchase, using high quality polyfoam or a good innerspring in the support core (the lower layers that are less subject to wear) and using higher quality and more durable materials on top can make a lot of sense and reduce the cost of sleeping on latex for those who prefer it’s qualities, performance, and feel.

Questions are good :slight_smile:


So shouldn’t I then look for an all latex mattress instead of a latex comfort layer with a polyfoam or innerspring core? Wouldn’t the latex core last longer and give better support than poly or innerspring (given being a heavier person) and Provided that I am willing to pay the extra money for it? Or do you think a quality poly or spring would be just fine provided the comfort part is latex?
This is a lot of money so I want to make sure it lasts for me…
Do you think I could find a quality, all latex mattress for $1500 or less (for a king)??
Anyplace online you could recommend off the top of your head? I haven’t seen any online that are all latex for that amount. I don’t even know if one exists

Hi gabodi,

In a perfect world then yes. But unfortunately all of us aren’t in a position that we are able to buy the type of mattress we would buy if money was no object. In these cases there are tradeoffs involved in deciding how close to our “ideal” we can come within our budget.

While latex makes a very supportive, conforming, and durable support core … high quality polyfoam in a support core can also be very durable. Tempurpedic mattresses for example uses a high quality polyfoam in their memory foam mattresses and for most people … if they choose the best one for their needs and preferences (or any mattress that uses similar quality materials) … they will last a long time. The weak link of almost all mattresses will be in the uupper layers of a mattress and this is where more durable materials are most important. Some people may even be surprised to find that they actually prefer the feel of an innerspring or even in some cases a high quality polyfoam support core with latex on top even though by most standards latex is a “better” and higher quality material. In other cases, some people may not even be able to tell the difference between a latex/high quality polyfoam hybrid and an all latex mattress and may not be willing to pay for something they can’t feel or where the benefits of a latex core aren’t as important to them as having it in a comfort layer. In other cases yet … they may find that they prefer a high quality slow response material like memory foam.

Because a mattress is one of the most important household items that we can purchase and arguably has a bigger effect on our wellbeing than any other household purchase … I generally suggest that people choose the best quality and value they can in any material or component within their budget limitations. Using a material though that has benefits that can’t be felt or where it’s strengths may not be as important may also not be a good choice.

All materials come in high and low quality versions … including polyfoam … so the goal is first to find out which types of materials you prefer and know the benefits of each material … both that you can feel and that may be important to you over time. Once you know this … then the next goal is to choose the best quality /durability of this material that is possible inside your budget.

While any material can meet our needs (pressure relief and alignment) in the right combinations and quality (no matter what someone’s weight) … they may not all meet every one of our preferences or the things that we may not notice in a showroom but will become apparent over time when you actually sleep on the mattress.

So the first step is to find out how latex feels compared to polyfoam and memory foam in the comfort layers and also test to see if you can feel the differences between different types of support cores (innerspring, latex, polyfoam) so that you have a sense of how each material feels and performs for you. Then you can add the properties of each material such as durability and breathability and sleeping temperature that you may not be able to know for sure in your short time in a showroom. Once you’ve done this … then you can look at your options to decide which mattress and which outlet can offer you the best possible combination that will suit your needs and preferences and is also inside your budget.

This would depend to some degree on the amount and layering of the latex and also on what other components were included (such as the quality of the cover and the quilting). In a 6" latex mattress this would be no problem but it’s unlikely that 6" would be enough for your weight. In an 8" or 9" latex mattress … you are a few hundred below the normal low end of an all latex king size mattress once everything is taken into account and you would still have to make some tradeoffs. Many people of your weight would also prefer a thicker mattress in a range up to about 12" (which has a greater range of compression from soft to firm) and this would be well out of your $1500 budget. Don’t forget too that this is “mattress only” and that you will need a foundation or bed for the mattress as well which will add to the cost if what you have isn’t suitable.

A list of the members here that specialize in working with their customers online or “on the phone” and sell great quality and value mattresses are in post #21 here. These are generally among the best value you will find in the country. Many of these make all latex mattresses with different features and benefits in different price ranges. don’t forget too that all of them offer either a 5% discount or a bonus with a mattress purchase to members of the forum which can help a little with your budget.

So for now … I would focus on “flopping around” (checking how it feels when you move) … lying around (checking how it feels when you are completely relaxed or with very slow and lazy movements) and maybe even taking a nap on a few all latex , and latex hybrids and a few other combinations in your “playground” (any store and mattress in the area where you can find out what is in it) just to experience the general feel of different combinations of materials and components. Once you’ve done this … then is the time to begin narrowing down your choices to get as close as you can to your “ideal” inside your budget either with a local purchase (if the value of a local purchase that you can accurately test justifies any extra cost) or online (if a lower cost justifies the greater risk of buying something you can’t try first).

One step at a time :slight_smile: