Purchasing a mattress is one of those things for which time and a little research will pay off in droves when you ultimately find the ideal one. There is no shortage of options in the mattress world these days. In fact, the varieties may seem overwhelming. But there are a few really important factors that can help whittle down all the choices out there and make the entire procedure a lot less daunting. And let’s face it: mattresses aren’t cheap, even the lousy ones. So we’re going to steer you clear of the pitfalls and sift through the variables that will make the mattress you end up choosing a worthy nest for your own unique dreamland. There are three main variables to consider when choosing a mattress: firmness and materiality, sleep style, and price/warranties. The most important and talked-about aspect is arguably firmness level. Goldilocks proves that this is a subjective matter, but there are also physiological factors that can guide you towards finding the perfect fit. According to the National Sleep Foundation, body weight is a considerable determinant in gauging the desired composition. For bodies that weigh less than 130 pounds, softer mattresses are recommended. For more ample figures, a firmer construction can be considered, as some cushioning is provided by additional body mass. Also, back sleepers might find firmer surfaces more comfortable and supportive, whereas the uneven topography of shoulders, waists and hips require a softer, more forgiving cushion. Different levels of firmness can be accomplished using various materialities. Foam is best for contouring and coupled sleeping arrangements because the foam molds individually to a body with minimal motion transfer to the other side. Innersprings have a lower price point and are bouncier, making them great options for children’s beds. A hybrid is a combination of those two and provides low heat retention for hot-bodied sleepers, and for some, it’s the best of both worlds. There are also high-tech mattresses with built-in cooling gel beads or diamond particulate that wick away heat if you want to keep up with the latest innovations in the sleep world. And this leads us to the final consideration: price. It must always be remembered that mattresses are an essential investment in your health and well-being. Research shows that good sleep is fundamental to good health, both mental and physical. So while some mattress prices may seem steep, they are often a worthwhile investment. That said, affordability is a primary concern of mattress makers, too, who know they need to provide attractive options to those who are more financially conservative. And while most mattresses come with a warranty, the duration of such should be considered in conjunction with the purchase price because that guarantee of comfort and longevity will provide peace of mind—an integral factor that will help you sleep as soundly as you will finding the perfect mattress.