Tuft & Needle thoughts and looking for ideas

Okay, have only “slept” on Tuft & Needle 10" for one night, and intended to wait longer until commented again. However, I am pretty sure I have made a huge mistake after sleeping on it for one night. I do not think this mattress is meant for either me or my wife. Maybe we are just too old and to accustomed to sleeping on innerspring mattresses to change at this stage. Here are some observations.

  1. This mattress is extremely firm for us after laying it for 20 minutes or so. I did not notice just how firm when I first got in, but lots of pressure point discomfort after being in bed for a while. Had this same experience each time I got up (and unfortunately got up a lot last night). Each time I got back in the bed if felt much softer than I remembered having just gotten out of it, but very firm a few minutes later.

  2. Initially had a plush mattress pad (not a topper, just a pad) on it when we first went to bed. After a couple of hours of discomfort thought maybe I had the mattress upside down (I did not) and went to the internet to look. Up at midnight stripping the bed and checking to be sure. Phoenix had previously commented that a thicker mattress pad could make a mattress feel firmer, which seems counter-intuitive to me, but I can now vouch they are ABSOLUTELY correct! Took the mattress pad off and just used the sheet. The mattress was a 1000 times better, but still not good.

  3. One positive, even with just a sheet, the split between the two twin xl’s mattresses is not really noticeable when laying across it. This is a concern to me because I want to use independently adjustable bases eventually with our new bed. Also, this mattress does not sleep hot, another big plus.

  4. Have seen the comments about it taking time to adjust to new mattresses, but not sure more time going to make that much difference. We travel a lot, and sleep on different mattresses of all types, probably at least ten times a year. Some we like better than others (love some of the Marriott Beds and had even considered buying one of those but not sure they would work on an adjustable base). Neither my wife or I have ever had as much difficulty sleeping on any mattress as we did last night. And I have never heard my wife ever complain about any mattress before - her comment is always it doesn’t matter, you just get in and go to sleep. However last night she almost went to the couch or upstairs to another bedroom several times.

  5. I am very heavy, and I may be bottoming out the comfort layer after being in bed for a while, but my wife not so much and she had the same complaints. In addition to back ache, the leg I was sleeping on was very uncomfortable. We both ached this morning and could not wait to get out of bed. Got the Advil bottle out for the first time in a long time.

My dilemma is I am not sure where to go to from here. When I first started looking for a new mattress I encountered the adjustable beds and decided I had to have one of those. We have purchased the bases but have not yet set them up. Still looking forward to those since having laid on one in a showroom. We put a tv in the bedroom a couple of years ago and watch tv in bed a couple of hours a night so thought that adjustable bed would be ideal. My wife and I have different sleeping patterns so wanted the ability to independently control each side, hence the split king approach.

Our old Beautyrest pillow top is now gone (it was time) so going to be replaced for sure, but not certain with what. What I do know is the following:

a. I want the adjustable bases if at all possible. Don’t need them, but definitely want them. I like a softer bed, but need support for my back. That desire for an adjustable bed is what caused me to look at alternatives to innerspring mattresses. Not sure an innerspring would do well on adjustable bases over time, otherwise I probably would have just bought a Marriott Bed or another Beautyrest or one from Original Mattress Factory. So I think I have crossed off innersprings.

b. Because of our different sleeping patterns I want the sides to adjust independently meaning two twin xl’s. Since I want to minimize the split I want the mattress to be more of a square edge, so that eliminates a lot of choices.

c. Looked at Tempurpedic, thought I liked the Cloud Supreme (felt good while just laying on it in the store) but re-considered when went to get out of the bed. It was a chore. Tried it several times, and noticed even changing positions was difficult. Plus I have heard it sleeps hot which I do not want, so think I have crossed it off. Not sure any memory foam type would be what I am looking for.

d. Tried a Sleep Number bed, and frankly loved how it felt in the store. My concern there is the moving parts and durability after a couple of years, so think I have crossed that off.

e. Tried an all latex (Pure Latex Bliss Beautiful). It was soft, but felt I sunk down too much on it when testing. The next model (forget its name) felt a little too firm. May return to look at latex mattresses.

Would appreciate any thoughts or help to this lengthy plea for ideas.


Hi Basil,

One of the attractions of the “one firmness choice for everyone” style of mattresses is that they simplify the buying and decision making process which can be very attractive to some people and may be one of the most important parts of their “personal value equation”. With any retailer or manufacturer that only offers a single mattress though you will find that they will be the “best” match for a relatively small percentage of the population, a “good” match for a larger percentage, an “OK” match for a larger percentage yet, and for those that it isn’t a “good enough” match … they have a great return policy that lets you start all over again with choosing another mattress with little risk outside of the time you spent trying the mattress or returning it.

While it may be worthwhile to sleep on it for a few weeks because all new mattresses will go through an initial break in period where the cover will stretch and loosen a little and the foams will lose any of their “false firmness” and soften a little and you will also go through an adjustment period with any new sleeping surface that can change your sleeping experience (see post #3 here), if you decide you are in the last group and it’s not a “good enough” match for you then it’s an easy matter to return it (or arrange to donate it to a local charity).

The first place to start is the mattress shopping tutorial here which includes all the basic information, steps, and guidelines that you will need to make the best possible choices … and know how and why to avoid the worst ones.

If you are in a much heavier than average weight range then some of the information in post #3 here and the posts it links to will be helpful.

Your adjustable bed will work well with most foam mattresses (latex foam, polyfoam, and memory foam) that aren’t too thick (more than about 12" or so although this will depend on the specifics of the mattress) and with most pocket coil mattresses as well so you have many choices that would be suitable for your adjustable bed.

Some innersprings (such as most pocket coils and some other types of innersprings that have hinges built in) will be fine with an adjustable bed (you would need to check with the retailer or manufacturer) and I personally wouldn’t rule out any type of mattress category ahead of time. There are some good quality innerspring mattresses available although I would avoid the major brands or any innerspring mattress which uses lower quality or “unknown quality” materials in the comfort layers because the quality of the materials in the comfort layers are generally the weakest link in a mattress in terms of durability (see the guidelines here).

I would also avoid hotel mattresses and you can see some comments about them in post #3 here.

I would be very cautious with airbeds as well and you can see some comments about them in this article.

Latex is a very high quality and durable material but with any mattress category you will find a very wide range of different designs and firmness levels. Some may be a great match for you in terms of PPP (Posture and alignment, Pressure relief, and Personal preferences) and some may be completely unsuitable for you to sleep on.

Two of the posts in the tutorial that are particularly important to read are post #2 here which has more about the different ways to buy a suitable mattress that can help you assess and minimize the risk involved in each of them and post #13 here which has more about the most important parts of the “value” of a mattress purchase which can help you make more meaningful comparisons between mattresses.

The tutorial also includes two links to many of the better online choices I’m aware of and if you let me know your city or zip code I’d also be happy to let you know about any of the better options or possibilities I’m aware of in your area.


Hello Basil-

We had purchased a 10" Tuft and Needle queen in December.

A couple of considerations:

Like you, I felt the first couple of nights the bed was way too firm. I e-mailed Tuft and Needle, and asked a few questions to Phoenix here the first week.

A couple of things Tuft and Needle, and/or Phoenix told me: the first few nights, the foam may feel much firmer than it really is, part of the reason is because the mattress sat on a cold truck during delivery. The foam takes a few days to warm up, and the foam will soften after warming. I absolutely found this to be true. For about the first week, I found the mattress to be very cold when I first got into bed- one aspect I absolutely hated- I started using my heating pad before getting into bed. Now, the mattress is not cold when I get into bed at night. I assume it did take awhile for the mattress to warm up. About day 4 or 5 though, it was a bit softer and warmer than when it first arrived.

Another thing about that cold foam- the first night, I noticed no smell coming from the mattress, and I thought, great, no yucky odor like memory foam or regular polyfoam toppers I’ve experienced. The second night there was a light odor. Then on the third day and fourth day, the odor got very strong. Tuft and Needle thought this was because the foam was warming up- and yes, the new foam does have an odor. For us, it took about 3 weeks for the odor to finally disappear, although Tuft and Needle said most people have told them the odor is gone after a week. Thankfully the foam is Certipur, so the odor is not harmful.

Also, like you discovered, a thick mattress pad can make the mattress firmer. We did the same thing- the first night, had our old, thickly padded mattress pad on the Tuft and Needle. It didn’t make sense to me either, but the foam of this mattress seems to be the best feel if it can “cradle” your body, if that makes sense. Tuft and Needle, and Phoenix here, mentioned that a mattress pad can interfer with the ability of the foam to cradle all your body parts and cushion them. I had bad pressure points in my shoulder and hips with the mattress pad, but now have no pressure points with just a thick flannel sheet.

I found it took about 2 1/2- 3 weeks for the foam to soften up. And yes, it does soften up. When we first got the mattress, I described it as firm, and the first few nights, very firm, probably because it was still cold and firmer from sitting on a deliver truck. The foam has broken in, and now I’d say the foam is medium firm. However, we all experience mattress firmness and softness differently, I’m describing it compared to other mattresses I’ve felt in mattress showrooms.

Phoenix said that it takes a little while for the foam to break in- the way I understand it is, when foam is new- there are “cells” that have to “break”, and larger “cells” become smaller “cells” which equates to a softer feel. To help speed this process, I literally walked all over the entire surface of the mattress once or twice a day for a week. To be honest, it made my legs tired! And it is a good exercise in balance- I suggest another person to help you balance if you find yourself unsteady while walking on the surface.

The first week, the Tuft and Needle was better than our old latex/innerspring mattress that had me in so much pain, that I had to take prescription pain medication to sleep (I eventually spent 4 years on our guest futon while my husband continued to sleep on the latex/innerspring in the master bedroom), but I still was waking up a few times a night on the new Tuft and Needle and not entirely happy with the new mattress. After the first week, I considered the mattress “okay”, but I wasn’t in love with it for the first month. I didn’t have pressure point pain, and I was sleeping okay, but the feel of the mattress wasn’t what I was used to after decades sleeping on innerspring mattresses.

Now, after 2 months on the Tuft and Needle, i am completely in love with the mattress. That “love” come at about week 5. I no longer need to take pain medication to sleep in the master bedroom, and I’m not waking up with any pain at all- for the past 20 years, I’ve had pain upon waking, so this is amazing to me. My body has adjusted, and the mattress has broken in.

I know it’s hard to sleep on something that’s not entirely comfortable, but believe everything you read here on Mattress Underground that talks about adjustments to a new mattress- it does take a few weeks for a new mattress to break in and for your body to adjust to a new type of sleeping surface.

After a few weeks, if the mattress is not comfortable, then it probably isn’t suitable to you, and not a good match for the “PPP” that Phoenix is always talking about. That was the case with our last mattress- we had always had mainstream innerspring mattresses that instantly felt good to me, but would sag in a year- so for our last mattress we got a latex/innerspring that never ended up working for me, partly because I didn’t know anything about how to purchase a mattress and just bought a firm latex/innerspring hoping it would break in and last a long time. Wish I had known about Mattress Underground before that expensive purchase.

Although the Tuft and Needle might not be the right mattress for you, I can tell you from my own experience on this mattress, that your experience on it is likely to change after a few weeks. Hopefully for the better. Walk on the surface to help break it in. Don’t use a mattress pad. Use a room heater, if you have one, the first week to help warm up the mattress. Write an e-mail to Tuft and Needle to express your concerns, they can give more tips.

For me personally, this mattress is just about perfect in terms of “PPP”, and I’m glad I took the chance to order something untried before purchase. I know this won’t be the case for everyone, and the mattress may not work for you, but give it a few weeks before making a determination.

Good luck!

Thanks Sheep for the reply. Last night was miserable, especially before we removed the mattress pad. Much, much better after, but still not good. Each mattress was in the house for more than 24 hours before use, and would have thought that would be adequate time to warm up, but who knows. One was inside for several days since the two mattresses shipped separately and one arrived several days earlier.

Never thought about walking all over the mattress but will give it a shot. Right now not sure can sleep on it for a few weeks to wait until it softens up. Both my wife and I are sore today from last night, and pretty sure my wife will go upstairs tonight to sleep.

I too was sore the first two or three days after getting the Tuft and Needle- if you look back in the tuft and Needle 10" diary, you will see that I complained of scapular and neck pain after the first night. I used a foam roller and hot espsom salt for the first few days, and still had some scapular pain- it went away by the end of the first week. Removing the mattress pad helped, and changing pillows seemed to help too. I felt pressure point pain on my shoulders and hips, but that was due to the mattress pad I think (we spent the whole night with the mattress pad).

If you were already uncomfortable half way through the night with the mattress pad, that didn’t help things for the rest of the night. Tonight might be better.

Yep, I just double checked the reply from Tuft and Needle, and they said the foam can take a few days to warm up, especially if it was sitting on a delivery truck below 50 degrees (I don’t know where you live, but most of the country is below this temp right now). Mine spent 3 days on a Fed Ex truck, and it was under 50 degrees during the journey.

I found the mattress changed and got softer over the first 3 weeks or so, and haven’t felt any changes since about that time, but Tuft and Needle said it normally takes about 2 weeks to soften up. I guess it depends on several individual factors. We did change to a firmer foundation a week after getting the mattress, that changed the feel and I had to readjust to a new foundation.

I hope you have a more restful night of sleep tonight!