New mattress choices - Bowles vs. Simmons

Hello, we have been shopping for a new mattress and thought I’d ask the opinions of the very knowledgeable people on this forum. I’ll preface this by explaining why we are shopping for a new mattress after only 3.5 years on our current one. Our current bed is a Serta Pure Opulence king that we were led to believe was 100% latex when we foolishly purchased it from mattress firm back in early 2010. Needless to say it’s not pure latex and has proven (IMO) to be a rather uncomfortable, poor quality mattress over the past few years. It’s gotten to the point that I can’t stand sleeping on it any longer, so with the blessing of the wife, we are now shopping for a new one.

I have come to realize that I prefer a firmer mattress and out of the ones we tried we have narrowed our selection down to three. I’ve listed the prices for each as well and we are buying the mattress only:

  • Bowles HD Plush II ($1219)
  • Bowles HD Euro Style ($1219)
  • Simmons BeautyRest World Class Alexandria Firm w/ the cool air technology layer ($1059)

They all felt great in the stores, but upon finishing my brief time with them, my initial gut feeling had me leaning toward the Simmons. It just seemed to feel a bit more luxurious than the Bowles and had nice support as well. However, in my initial research, I’m seeing a lot of negativity directed at the Simmons, which worries me. Out of the two Bowles models, they were very close, but I leaned toward the Plush II as I worried that the Euro Style might start to wear out and “soften” too soon.

Does anyone have any opinions/experience on any of these mattresses? If so, I’d love to have your $0.02


I should also add that I’m a side sleeper and 5’10" 180lbs. Wife is various position sleeper 5’4" 140lbs

Hi davo808,

The first place I would start with any mattress research is post #1 here.

As you can see from the guidelines that are linked there … I would eliminate the Simmons right from the start.

A mattress is only as good as the quality of the materials inside it and when a manufacturer doesn’t provide this information (and the major manufacturers don’t generally disclose the quality of the materials in their mattresses) then there is no way to assess their quality of make meaningful comparisons with other mattresses.

Bowles is open about the materials they use and would generally be much better quality and value than major brands but you would need to ask them for the specs of the mattress (including the thickness and density of any memory foam or polyfoam layers) to make any kind of meaningful assessment.

Even the lowest quality materials can feel great in a showroom (you can’t feel the quality of the materials in a mattress) … but they will soften and break down much more quickly than higher density/quality materials.

You may also have other good options in your area and if you let me know your city or zip code I’d be happy to link you to any better options or possibilities I’m aware of in your area.


Hi Phoenix, thanks for the info! We live in the Indianapolis area. If you know of any other good places to look at, we’d love to hear them!

Hi davo808,

Some of the better options and possibilities I’m aware of in the Indianapolis area are listed in post #2 here.

I would always keep in mind that no matter who makes a mattress that the brand or manufacturer is always less important than their transparency and knowing the quality of the materials and components in any mattress you are considering so you can make meaningful quality and value comparisons with other mattresses.