"Major" Brands Sealy Optimum?

Hi Rhoden,

You have good reason to be concerned with the quality and value of a major brand.

Unfortunately there are not a lot of great options in your immediate area but there are a couple of factory direct manufacturers that are a bit of a drive away in the Columbia area that I would consider including in your research and may be worth the time it takes to visit them …

http://www.bestmattress.net/mattress-products.cfm West Columbia, SC. Factory direct manufacturer in West Columbia. they make latex, memory foam, and innerspring mattresses.

http://www.southernbeddingofcolumbia.com/ Columbia, SC. Factory direct manufacturer. Also make a range of different mattresses including innersprings and latex.

http://www.restmaster.com/ Local manufacturer that used to be wholesale only and makes mainly traditional mattresses (layers of polyfoam over innersprings) including one and two sided mattresses and a memory foam mattress as well. They now have their own factory direct showroom in North Augusta, SC.

Some of the local “possibilities” in the Augusta, GA / Aiken, SC area (out of about 40 stores that I looked at in the area) and the manufacturers that they carry that may be worth considering (subject to whether they can provide you with the specifics of the materials inside their mattress) include …

http://mattressman1.com/ Augusta, Martinez, GA. Aiken, SC. Southerland. They used to carry Pure Latex Bliss but they are no longer listed in their site so you may wish to call and see if they still carry them.

http://www.davisapplianceaugusta.com/our-brands/ Augusta, GA. Symbol

http://www.ashleysonmain.com/ New Ellenton, SC. Park Place

http://www.yelp.com/biz/southern-furniture-mattress-and-appliances-thomson Thomson, GA. Posturecraft, Therapedic

http://www.capitalfurniture.com/ Waynesboro, GA. Jamison

I would call these first to confirm they are transparent about the materials in their mattresses and to make sure they carry the type of mattresses you are interested in testing before paying them a visit.

Other than this … the mattress shopping tutorial includes this link to a list of some of the better online memory foam options I’m aware of (and several other links to lists of some of the better online options I’m aware of as well other than just memory foam mattresses).

Hope this helps


Hi Phoenix,

We are looking into purchasing the Sealy Optimum as well.

Any suggestions for retail outlets in Warwick, RI area?

Thank you!

Hi KJ,

The closest factory directs to you going north or east are in Post #2 here. There are some good choices in reasonable driving distance. I would call the ones that are closest to you first and talk to them about your preferences of materials and mattresses you have liked and ask what they make that may be suitable. If the call sounds promising, I would take the drive. There is no doubt the quality and value would be much better with any of the manufacturers on the list and they would likely save you a lot of time and frustration as well trying to sort through all the marketing information in the mainstream brands and stores and the frustration that goes with not being able to find any meaningful information that relates to the real quality/durability of these mattresses. Post #2 here has some links with feedback about many of the manufacturers listed.

Going west into Connecticut you also have some good choices but they are a little further away. They are listed in post #2 here. A forum search on “Connecticut” (clickable) will also bring up some posts with feedback about these as well.

Overall … I would tend to north/east.


Hi Phoenix, I was wondering if you could help me find some local mattress retailers in the Milwaukee area?

Also, I have severe lower back pain from a skiing injury years ago, should I go with a firmer mattress like the Destiny or a softer one? I tested out the Destiny in a store a few days ago and really liked the way it felt, but I’m curious to get your opinion as you definitely seem to know your stuff.


Hello, I have reviewed your posts above. We went to Mattress Firm today try out memory foam beds. We are both side sleepers and fell in love with the feel of the Sealy Optimum Inspiration bed. I saw you are recommending that people contact local manufacturers instead of large brand names for the best value. Can you suggest some places to try in Raleigh NC?

Thank you


Hi itschris917,

You have some great options in the general Milwaukee area and two of our manufacturing members are also within reasonable driving distance. They are included in post #2 here.

What I would suggest is that you make a list of the features that you need and prefer in a mattress and “rate” each mattress (say on a subjective scale of 1 - 5) against your needs and the preferences that are most important to you.

What you need:

This is about the two main functions of every mattress. They are …

Pressure relief in all your sleeping positions and in all the pressure points of your body (most commonly hips and shoulders) … especially on your side if this is one of your sleeping positions.

Posture and alignment in all your sleeping positions. This is about making sure that your spine is in its neutral alignment when you are completely relaxed on the mattress (which would normally involve at least 15 minutes on the mattress to “simulate” the pre-sleep state when your muscles “let go”).

There are links to more information in step 4 the tutorial post about testing a mattress for support/alignment and comfort/pressure relief.

What you prefer:

This is about all the many preferences that are more or less important to different people and that are part of your personal “value equation”. The most common of these (among others that may be important to different people) include …

Microclimate, breathability and temperature control (perhaps the most important of the preferences). You can read more about the factors involved in temperature regulation here and more about microclimate here.

Slow or fast response materials and where in the range you prefer

Sleeping “on” vs “in” the mattress

Motion isolation with small and large movements

The ease of movement or movement restriction on the mattress for changing position and “other activities”

Edge support for those who sit or sleep on the edge of a mattress

“Roll together” for those who sleep close together in the center of a mattress

Overall “feel” (such as the difference between combinations that include the “feel” of innersprings and/or different types of foam in the comfort or support layers)

Durability of materials in the mattress

Durability of construction (such as one or two sided)

Quality and performance of materials and construction

Ability to open the mattress and exchange layers or make changes after purchase

Warranty and warranty exclusions (which are often more important then the warranty itself). You can read more about mattress warranties here.

Budget limitations and range

Price vs quality and “commodity” value of materials

Mattress only or foundation included (and the type)

Natural materials vs synthetic

The type of cover and quilting (if any) you prefer

Your choice of retailer or manufacturer:

This part of a consumers preferences and “value” is about the differences between buying from different retailers or manufacturers whether they are local or online. Who you buy from can in many cases be just as important as what you buy and are part of the overall value of your purchase. The ability to test a mattress in person for PPP (Pressure relief, Posture and alignment, and Personal preferences) for example can be important … especially if it is done with the help of someone with the knowledge, experience, and integrity to help you make your best choices … and some of the many other objective and intangible benefits that each retailer offers can make a significant difference in long term satisfaction with your choice.

The different “value added” options that go with the mattress (delivery, financing, bonuses like pillows or a protector etc).

Options after purchase (returns, comfort exchanges, layer exchanges, warranty returns, adjustments, after sale service etc. and the specific costs and procedures involved with each). This also means that if you aren’t confident that a mattress is a good match for you in terms of PPP that you have some good options remaining in either a softer or firmer range and aren’t “stuck” with a mattress that doesn’t work well for you with few good quality/value options available to exchange for.

The knowledge and service of the outlet you buy from and their ability to help you choose a mattress that is suitable for your specific and unique needs and preferences.

The importance of supporting a particular retailer or manufacturer (for any other reasons that are important to you)

These and others could all be part of each person’s value equation and the importance of each of them (except your two basic needs) may be different for different people. Some of these are easily overlooked and may only become an “issue” at some point after you have purchased the mattress. It always makes sense to think about all of them ahead of time.

I would suggest that you measure every potential mattress purchase against these needs and preferences (or the ones that are important to you) so that you have a common yardstick to measure every mattress against. This is much more effective than trying to set any particular mattress as a “standard” and trying to “match” what are often more vague (or difficult to objectify or accurately remember) subjective impressions as your point of reference. You can read more about “matching” one mattress to another in post #9 here and the other posts it links to.

This will help you make more meaningful comparisons and find much better quality and value and will increase the odds that your choice will be as good in real life and the long term as it seemed in the showroom or online.

Calling each of the manufacturers or retailers first with some good questions or information about what you have already tested and what is important to you will help you find out what they offer that may be in line with what you are looking for and your conversation can also give you a sense of what to expect and the knowledge and service of the outlet if you decide to visit them. In most cases … a first step that includes the choices of outlet and knowing what is most important (for you) in a mattress can be a bigger part of both short and long term success than choosing the mattress itself.

Hope this helps :slight_smile: