Sleep changes everything. You’ve probably already heard how lack of sleep impairs memory, can lead to weight gain and makes you more accident prone. But did you know it also affects your relationship? Well, it does!
An article in the New York Times discusses several studies which explored how sleep affected relationships. These showed couples who slept too little or poorly:
And so, the study’s authors explain, before you decide your relationship is in trouble examine your sleep habits. Because changing how you sleep might be enough to save your relationship.
To that end, here we’ll look at two things. First, we’ll cover what to look out for when you’re trying to find the best mattress for couples. Then, we’ll cover a few common sleeping problems people have and offer advice.
Together, that should improve how well both of you sleep. And that might well be enough to save (and will definitely improve) your relationship! Now, wouldn’t that be something?
Okay, so let’s talk mattresses! Please note, we list a mattress (or product) beneath each section. These are only suggestions. There are plenty of other fantastic mattresses out there. therefore, if our suggested products don’t strike your fancy, click on! You’re bound to find something!
Best for Motion Isolation
Sweetnight Gel Memory Foam
Best to Prevent Noise
Pure Green Natural Latex
Best to Avoid Dips
Tuft & Needle California King
Best for Different Sleeping Positions
Layla Sleep Memory Foam
Best for Heat Management
Twin ChiliPad Cube - Heating and Cooling Pad
Best for Sex
Lucid 10" latex Foam
Many believe the only thing that changes about your mattress when you sleep together is you’ll need a bigger one. The bigger it is, they assume, the better their night’s rest. And of course with mattresses size does matter. At the same time, it is hardly the only thing that does so.
There are lots of other things to watch out for. This includes motion isolation, how much noise it makes, whether indentions forms and if it’s suitable for your sleeping positions. Let’s look at those things (and more) in turn.
As the name suggests, motion isolation is how well the mattress manages to absorb one partner’s movement so it won’t disturb the other. If one of you is a light sleeper, that’s a big deal.
Some materials are better at motion isolation than others. For example, memory foam is known to be quite good at it while inner springs are less so. And waterbeds? People can actually get seasick on those!
Most products that are good at Motion isolation will contain the words in the title (here’s a useful list on Amazon). Don’t stop, there though. You’ll also want to read people’s reviews, as often what the makers say and what users experience aren’t the same thing.
As most people won’t talk about what a mattress does well, to find out if your mattress is good at motion isolation look at the bad reviews (there are always a few). If nobody talks about motion transference or how one person wakes the other up, you’re looking at a winner.
To check only the negative reviews on Amazon, scroll down to ‘customer reviews’. There, click on ‘see all 21 customer reviews’ (or whatever the number is) and they’ll shown up on the right.
As mentioned, memory foam is great for motion isolation. One of the best such mattresses we’ve found is the Sweetnight 10-inch gel memory foam mattress.
It’s comfortable, forms itself to the body and manages to avoid sagging in the middle. Reviews on Amazons are rave. As an added bonus, it’s cheaper than many other choices.
One problem that memory foam mattresses often have is that they smell odd when they come out of the package. We’ve found that to be true here as well. Don’t despair, though, as the smell will dissipate quickly.
Creaky beds are another common problem for light sleepers. The thing is, most mattresses aren’t noisy to begin with. Instead, much like inlaws, they get crankier as they get older.
That means, as reviews get written within the first year, noise rarely gets caught in them. Your best bet for finding out how much noise different mattresses make is to look at what they’re made of. For example, innerspring mattress with their metal parts, are more likely to creak as they age. Solid mattresses have the advantage that nothing can slide past each other. So, they’re less noisy.
Some choice solid mattress materials include foam, memory foam or latex. Do note, if you’re not used to these and have always slept on an innerspring, try one out first. Maybe go into a shop and try it there (then buy them online as they’re generally cheaper). Alternatively, make sure that you can send it back no questions asked if you don’t like it.
If we have to choose between latex, memory foam or foam, then latex has the edge. Even better than latex is all-natural latex. It is heavy, so it won’t move. As a bonus, natural latex is a great anti-allergenic.
And if you want an all-natural latex mattress, then the pure green natural latex mattress is a great choice. It is mostly positively reviewed. Though you might want to check the few negative reviews it has to see if their problems sound like they’d bother you as well.
Many mattresses sag over time. But with some mattresses this happens a heck of a lot faster than others. Memory foam mattresses, for example, are notorious for their indentations.
Dips can be even more problematic for couples as there is less space for the two of you to change positions. And so, you’re more likely to sleep in the same spots on the mattress with all the consequences thereof.
As these indentations mean you can't keep your spine straight, they can be a real problem for people with back or neck issues. This is also true if either of you are overweight, as then mattresses can sag faster.
Rare are the occasions where mattress makers admit their beds indent over time. Take, for example, the Serta Perfect Sleeper Elite Super Pillow Top Mattress. In the blurb the makers claim it, “encourages proper back support and alignment with the custom support”.
The reviews tell a different story. One customer said, “We purchased this mattress in February 2016 it is now almost September 2016. 7 months later and this mattress has the worst sagging I've ever seen. At first this bed was amazing and now horrible. I've had 2 back surgeries and at first this bed made my back feel amazing and now I sleep on the couch.”
Note that this is not us trying to criticize a specific mattress. Many other mattress reviews read much the same. So, check them!
Tuft & Needle mattresses are a well-respected brand. One of their best is the Tuft & Needle California King Mattress with T&N Adaptive Foam. This new type of foam was designed to avoid the dent formation that memory foam mattresses have.
This helps the mattress’ rating on Amazon. For us, there are a lot of great aspects to this mattress, but what we really like is the 100-day sleep trail. In that way, you can check if this indentation happens for yourself and if it does, you just send it back!
Did you know that how you sleep impacts the kind of mattress you need? Well, it does! Different positions need different types of mattresses. Largely what changes is the firmness you’re looking for.
As you might have noticed, couples who have a stomach sleeper and a side sleeper have a problem. One needs firmer mattress while the other needs a softer one.
Fortunately, this isn’t insurmountable. The easiest solution is to get two different toppers for your mattress. These will allow you to adjust the firmness on each side. This way you both get the firmness you want without creating that horrible gap in the middle that two seperate mattresses have.
The advantage of the Layla sleep memory foam full mattress is that both sides have different amounts of firmness. Of course, you can't use both sides at the same time unless one of you sleeps under the mattress. Nonetheless, because you can try more different combinations of toppers and mattress sides, you’re more likely to find a combination that will make you both happy.
As an extra bonus, the mattress has a copper coil cooling system inbuilt. That can help those who sleep hot (something we'll discuss next).
Some mattresses – like those made of memory foam – sleep hot, while others – like those with innersprings and latex – sleep cooler. What you’ll need depends on the temperature of your bedroom and how hot the two of you sleep.
If you’re lucky, both of you will sleep about the same. Unfortunately, if one of you makes reptiles shiver while the other could serve to heat a water kettle, that’s problematic. There are some mattresses that allow you to control the heat for the different parts of the mattress. But they’re expensive.
If you’re not ready to fork over several thousand dollars for a mattress, your best bet is to regulate temperature in other ways. For example, you can use the special topper we discuss down below. Or, you can try using separate comforters and blankets.
Getting a waterbed with twin heaters is also an option. That’s a bit like having your own car seat heater per side. Of course, waterbeds aren’t for everybody. So, if you want to consider getting one of those, make sure you try it out first!
Okay, it’s not a mattress. All the same, if one of you sweats while the other shivers then this is a good choice. It fits right under your sheets and will allow you to regulate the temperature that you’re sleeping at.
Admittedly, it isn’t cheap. A twin (for one person) will put you back several hundred dollars. At the same time, they do have a money-back guarantee. So, if it doesn’t work out, you can send it back.
If only one of struggles with temperature, consider getting the ‘twin’ version. It will cover half your mattress and is also about half the price. The material is thin enough you won’t really notice it doesn’t cover the whole bed.
Obviously, you’ll want a mattress that suits your sex life. There is a lot more to consider there than you might be aware of. Largely, that’s because all of our sex lives are different and we’re looking for different things from our mattress.
For example, you might care more about discretion, bounce, support and durability. Which one matters the most for you will decide what mattresses material will suit you better. We wrote an extensive article about what mattress is best for sex if you’re interested to learn more.
In a nutshell, the best overall materials seem to be Hybrid materials, Latex and innerspring mattresses – though for different reasons. Inner spring give more bounce, latex are good across the board, and hybrid mattresses are comfortable and durable.
As latex is the best across the board (a jack of all trades if you will) that’s a good choice for a mattress that you can get busy on. It breathes well, so you don’t get too hot, offers a nice bit of bounce and – to boot – is discreet as well.
What’s more, as latex mattresses go, it’s on the cheap side, while being well reviewed. Again, you might want to check the specific reviews for the mattress to make sure it suits you.
In studies, those who report lower relational satisfaction report having more sleep problems. Even more interesting is the observation that this relationship is bi-directional. That’s science-speak for they both affect each other. When you’re less satisfied with your relationship, your sleep is affected. Similarly, the worse you sleep, the more critical you are of your relationship. In other words, we’ve got a vicious spiral here.
Obviously, you’ll want to interrupt that. As our expertise is mattresses and not relationships, we’ll tackle it from that angle. Here we’ll look at two of the biggest bogeymen of the bedroom, snoring and body clocks.
Give our strategies a try before consider more drastic solutions, like sleeping apart. Of course, if what we talk about here doesn’t work then that’s always an option. Sometimes having an escape hatch (i.e. another bed or bedroom) can be a relationship saver if during a night sleeping problems become too much. You will want to discuss this first, so that you both understand it isn’t because you love each other less.
When one of you chainsaws through the amazon every night, that’s a problem. And not just for the person who has to listen to it either! Snorers sleep more poorly. Fortunately, there are things you can do about snoring.
One common problem couples have is that they don’t feel sleepy at the same time. One might be a morning lark and the other a night owl. Often, that leads to a lot of conflict and insomnia.
It turns out, when you feel sleepy isn’t just something related to how you’re raised. Our body clock, or circadian rhythm, have a strong genetic element. Several scientists got the Nobel prize for that discovery.
Long story short, if you and your partner don’t have the same rhythm that’s hard to change. So, instead create workarounds. In this way, you can still sleep together, but without interrupting each other’s night rest.
Some ideas include:
Phew! We’re almost at the end. That was a lot of information, wasn’t it? It’s because so many things matter when you buy a new mattress as a couple. More than many people realize. And if you don’t consider all the angles, you might end up spending a lot of money on something that ends up disappointing. Hopefully, armed with the information we’ve provided, that won’t happen anymore.
The one big question left over is: So, if you take all of that information, throw it in a pot and stir, what then is the best mattress for couples?
Here’s our answer: The Tuft & Needle Mattress
There are several reasons we choose this mattress. First off is the special adaptive foam it’s made of. This is a newer version of foam which doesn’t sleep as hot as, for example, memory foam does. Similarly, it doesn’t create those dips that we’re talking about. In other words, it’s got all of the advantages of a solid mattress, without the drawbacks.
But that’s only part of the reason.
The other part is that it comes with a 100-day money-back guarantee. That’s offer tackles one the biggest problem with online purchases - you can’t try stuff out. And that is what lets it take prime position in our minds. Because in that way, if it turns out the mattress doesn’t do as well as you’d hoped it would, you simply get to try again. That gives you ease of mind and a greater likelihood that your sleep will be like a dream.