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How to Break in a New Mattress

Jan 7, 2022


Family Breaking in a New Mattress

We get it. Once you invest in a new mattress, it’s natural to want it to immediately improve the quality of your sleep. But just like a new pair of shoes, mattresses need to be broken in before you start getting the amazing sleep you’ve been dreaming about. In today’s blog, the mattress experts at Star Furniture discuss how to break in a new mattress and how long you can expect it to take. 

How Long Does It Take for a New Mattress to Break In?

Many people don’t realize that it can take anywhere from thirty to ninety days to break in a new mattress, but it makes sense if you think about it. Not only is your body used to accommodating the quirks of your old mattress, but the new mattress materials may not have had time to loosen and soften for optimal use. In fact, different types of mattresses have different break-in periods based on the materials used in production. Remember, the average lifespan of a mattress is 7-10 years, so waiting a few months for a mattress to be broken-in won’t significantly cut into your overall time enjoying the mattress.

Memory Foam & Hybrid Mattresses

Memory foam and hybrid mattresses tend to take the longest amount of time to break in. In fact, it usually takes between thirty to ninety days, depending on the types of foam that are used in the mattress’ design. High-density memory foam, for example, is more durable than low-density foam. So, in addition to extending the lifespan of your mattress, it will also take a little more time to break in. Lower density memory foam will likely fall on the shorter end of the break-in period.

Innerspring Mattresses

Innerspring mattresses, on the other hand, tend to take less time to break in, especially if they have a pillow top. In fact, innerspring mattresses tend to break in at around the 30-day mark. That said, mattress care is especially important for innerspring mattresses. If you don’t rotate innerspring mattresses every 3 to 6 months, they won’t break in evenly, and you’ll likely start to notice sagging and other damage to your mattress. Not only does this mean a worse night’s sleep, but it also means you’ll have to replace your mattress much earlier than you would have otherwise, which will end up costing you money.

If you find yourself disappointed in the first weeks of owning a mattress, you may need to give yourself and the mattress more time to adjust. While being patient is incredibly important, you can also start taking some steps to expedite the process. Here’s how to break in a new mattress quickly.

How to Break in a New Mattress

If you’ve recently bought a new mattress but aren’t getting the high-quality sleep you were expecting, you may need to take some steps to break the mattress in. Here’s how to break in a new mattress, so you don’t end up writing off a good thing before you’ve given it a chance.

Make Sure You Have the Right Foundation

Did you know that mattress foundations can help improve airflow, protect you from allergens, and expand the lifespan of your mattress? If you’re trying to break in a new mattress, it’s important to realize that all mattresses have different foundation needs. Box springs, for example, work best with innerspring mattresses, while slatted foundations and platform beds work best for memory foam and hybrid mattresses. If you’ve recently purchased a new mattress type, or if your mattress foundation is worn out, sagging, or broken, a new foundation will help you get the best results from your mattress. In fact, the foundation is so important that some mattress warranties require you to put the mattress on a foundation that also comes from that brand. That way, they can be sure that the mattress is properly supported and is not being damaged by an improper foundation. In fact, that’s why it’s so important to follow the manufacturer instructions when choosing a foundation. Not only do they understand what works best for that particular mattress but failing to do so could cause problems if you end up wanting to return your mattress.

Air Out Your Mattress

Especially if you’ve purchased a memory foam bed-in-a-box, you need to give the mattress plenty of time to air out and decompress before sleeping on it. Not only do these mattresses sometimes initially produce an unpleasant chemical smell, but they also take time to expand to their full size. While it can be tempting to sleep on the mattress early, sleeping on it too soon will be uncomfortable and could also prevent the mattress from ever expanding correctly. While you should default to the instructions that came with your specific mattress model, it may be in your best interest to let the mattress breathe without any sheets or weight for the first 24 hours after opening.

Add Some Pressure

Does your mattress feel too firm or hard? One way to soften the materials in your memory foam mattress is to walk on it. Taking a small stroll on your mattress can relieve pressure and soften the memory foam materials, creating a more comfortable sleeping experience.

If you have an innerspring or hybrid bed, it’s better to crawl over your bed on your hands and knees. That way, your weight is less concentrated and won’t cause the springs to buckle or obtain damage.

If you want to break in your bed while you’re away from home, try stacking books or other objects on it during the day. Just try not to exceed your own weight or the weight limit of your mattress, and make sure that the weight is properly distributed to prevent damage.

Sleep on It Every Night

If you’re not finding your new bed as comfortable as you hoped, it can be tempting to take some nights off from sleeping on the mattress. But before you opt for your guest bedroom or the sofa, you’ll want to consider the fact that the less time you spend on your mattress, the longer it will take to break it in. When you sleep, your body weight puts pressure on the mattress, which can help break it in. Not only does consistently sleeping in your bed help break in the new mattress materials faster, but it can also help your body adjust to the mattress more quickly. Many people have slept on their previous mattress for up to a decade, so naturally, it will take some time to adjust to the feel of the new mattress. This is especially true if the wear and tear on your old mattress required your body to compensate for certain problems with the mattress. Because you have a limited window to try out your mattress, any nights slept elsewhere can add extra time to the process, which can cut into the limited timeline of your satisfaction guarantee.

Spend Extra Time in Bed

If you’re having trouble breaking in your mattress, try spending some extra time in bed. If you can sit or lay down on it when you’re watching television, catching up on emails, or reading, your body weight will help soften the materials and break in the new mattress. While sitting on different parts of the bed can be helpful, you can even try rolling back and forth on it for some added pressure.

Turn Up the Heat

Wondering how to break in a new mattress quickly. Try turning up the heat in your bedroom. Especially if you have a memory foam or hybrid mattress, turning up the heat can help you break in your mattress more quickly. Because warmer temperatures can soften the material and make it more malleable, turning your thermostat up to 72 degrees for a few nights can have a big impact on the comfort of your mattress. That said, a warmer bedroom can disrupt your sleep. So, while it may help speed up the “breaking in” process, it might also contribute to any poor sleep you’re having on your new mattress.

Be Patient

While there are things you can do to expedite the process of breaking in a new mattress, the truth is that some things just take time. You don’t throw away a pair of boots that give you a blister the first time you wear them. Instead, you put in the time and effort needed to break the new shoes in.

We get it, mattresses are such a big purchase, it can be easy to get discouraged if you don’t immediately love the way the new mattress feels. But remember, the showroom mattress that felt so comfortable when you were testing out mattresses likely had people sitting and laying on it every day. After a few weeks or months, your bed will be broken into the comfort level you remember from your time on the showroom floor.

It’s also important to remember that the better the mattress, the longer it might take to break it in. That same durability that extends the lifespan of your mattress also means a little extra time breaking it in. So, try to look at it as a positive, since it indicates that your mattress will last for years to come.

Try a Mattress Topper

If you like some aspects of your mattress but find it a bit too soft, too firm, or too hot, a mattress topper might solve your problem without needing to replace the whole mattress. Because there are so many types of mattress toppers with different features, you should be able to find something to take your mattress to the next level. While you’ll want to try this before the 90-day mark, we recommend waiting as long as possible to try this solution, as you might not end up needing it once the mattress is fully broken in.

When to Consider Returning Your Mattress

Because it can take a few months to properly break-in your mattress in, we recommend waiting until the very end of your trial period to return your mattress. If you purchase your mattress from Star Furniture, for example, we provide you with an incredible 90-day satisfaction guarantee, which starts the day the mattress is received. Once you approach the end of your trial, you should consider exchanging or returning your mattress if you’re still unhappy with it.

Before you arrange to return your mattress, make sure to take note of what specifically you didn’t like about the mattress so our mattress experts can help you find a suitable replacement. If, for example, your mattress was too soft, firm, or hot, we can help you find a mattress that better suits your needs. That said, it’s important to note that soiled, infested, or damaged mattresses will not be accepted, so make sure you’re taking good care of your mattress during the trial period. Now that you know how to break in a new mattress, it’s time to start shopping. Visit a Star Furniture store near you to browse our huge selection of high-quality mattresses for sale and to see how we’ve completely revolutionized the mattress buying experience. In the meantime, check out our mattress blog where we cover everything from how often you should replace your mattress to what to look for in a mattress. We even cover sleep topics like how to fall asleep faster and stay asleep longer.