The number 1 mattress retailer Mattress Firm is closing hundreds of stores and putting money towards expanding their digital business, reports USA TODAY. A large part of this is due to bed-in-a-box retailers, like Casper, becoming more popular among consumers. But what is it exactly about these places that sparked the craze? Luckily for you, I've been sleeping on a Casper mattress for two years and can tell you all about it.
I complained about our old mattress for at least two years before I did anything about it. Waking up achy after a night of tossing and turning on a squeaky old bed, throwing another “We really oughta’…” onto a pile of empty threats before heading for the shower.
How many times did I hear Marc Maron or one of the countless other podcasters extol the virtues of a Casper mattress before I finally took a chance? How many mattress reviews beyond this did I read before pulling the trigger? Too many, in retrospect.
Mattresses are unique among the things we own. We spend more time with them than any other consumer good (except perhaps our phones), yet we really only consider them when they’re either brand-new or when they’re utterly failing.
That stretch of time in the interim period—the time when they recede into the background—is when a mattress proves its worth.
There are undoubtedly better mattresses out there. Oprah sleeps on a $100,000 bed. I do not sleep on a $100,000 bed. I sleep on an $800 bed and I'm very happy. Here's why.
Unboxing a Casper mattress is an event unto itself
If owning a Casper mattress is blessedly unmemorable, getting one delivered sure makes an impression. Unlike traditional mattresses, it comes rolled up like a spring-loaded burrito. At 70 pounds (for the full size), it’s about twice as heavy as the mattress we were replacing and proved comically difficult to get up the stairs.
Unboxing it was just plain fun. Casper clearly put a lot of thought into designing the experience—right down to the little letter opener-style knife to slice open the shrink wrap without damaging the mattress. We just had to make sure the mattress was in position on the bed frame before we cracked it open.
The final cutting away proved, thankfully, less explosive than anticipated. Rather, the mattress' foam layers unfurl and expand as it takes its first deep breath in your new home. Just thinking about it makes me want to go home and crawl into bed for a quick nap. (Keep reading. I'm just resting my eyes.)
Tough to argue with a 100-day return policy
The extended money-back guarantee—a 40-day trial period when I bought mine, and now up to 100 days—was ultimately the factor that got me to click “buy.” I figured that takes a fair amount of confidence from a manufacturer. It's way more than enough time for back sleepers, stomach sleepers and side sleepers to figure out whether the pressure points inherent in their old mattresses have been done in by Caper.
If you pause to think about it, they can’t resell a used mattress. Plus they have to spend cash on a delivery team just to pick it up from your house—there’s no way you’re going to put this thing back in the box yourself. This is some amazing customer service.
In Casper, I saw a company putting its money where its mouth was. I was convinced.
The best mattress in the world? Probably not. But the right one for me.
I can say with certainty that Pinocchio’s in Harvard Square is the best pizza in Cambridge, MA because I’ve had pizza from every joint in the city. I’m an authority.
I cannot say that Casper is the best mattress in the world for precisely the same reason. I haven’t slept on every mattress in the world. This is also why I’m not going to bore you with a bunch of facts about foam density or how it stacks up against Purple, Tuft & Needle, and other new-school mattress companies that have sprung up. I can read the spec chart as well as anyone, but I can’t testify to their actual differences.
I’m speaking purely from personal experience. But in my defense, I always do my homework and I’m pretty damn opinionated about products. Also, my satisfaction with Casper seems to be in good company amongst the mattress nerds. It's not a firm mattress. It's not a soft mattress. It's just the right mattress for me--and very likely, for you as well.
Retailing at $950 for a Queen-size, Casper is in the mid-tier price bracket, and certainly a step-up from the cheap-o I was sleeping on before. I purchased the Full-size ($800) and only paid a little more than I did for my iPhone—I don't rely on that to keep my vertebrae in their right place, do I? Some things are worth investing in.
Verdict: I bought a Casper and then I stopped thinking about mattresses. Don’t you wish you could say the same?
Where to try or buy a Casper
Casper is an online-only business, which is a huge part of their appeal. You get to skip the hellscape of a traditional mattress store and try out the mattress in your own home for over three months. But if you absolutely have to feel it with your hands before you buy, Casper has starting showrooming in select Target stores.
All retailers charge the same price for Casper mattresses. If you see a suspiciously low sale price, double-check that it's not some weirdo selling you a used mattress. All (legit) retailers all have the same great 100-day return policy.
This article was updated with new information about where to see Casper mattresses in person.