Elsewhere on this site, I help people comparison shop between stores because difference places call the same mattress different names. I made charts for Beautyrest and Posturepedic, but I did not make a chart for Stearns and Foster. I didn’t make such a comparison chart for two reasons:
- Stearns and Foster is generally sold the same price everywhere. It’s what’s called a “MAP product,” meaning there is a minimum price the retailers can sell it at. Most retailers sell it at or near that price, so it’s difficult to save any money by comparison shopping Stearns and Foster.
- Perhaps more importantly, I just don’t recommend Stearns and Foster. It is simply not a good enough mattress to justify the price.
I’m going to explore point number 2 a little further in this article, and offer alternatives to Stearns and Foster.
Reasons I don’t recommend Stearns and Foster
There are a few reasons I don’t think Stearns and Fosters are good mattresses. Namely, the materials it’s made of, the customer satisfaction ratings it gets, and the price.
Stearns and Foster puts a lot of energy into finding materials for their mattresses that sound luxurious, but don’t actually offer any benefit into the comfort and support of a mattress. For example, they’ll use things like silk, cashmere, New Zealand Wool, and Mongolian horse hair in their mattresses, which all sound very nice, but they don’t actually help any. The silk is just blended into the fabric, which does nothing at best and weakens the fabric at worst. Wool is a nice feature in a mattress, but importing it from New Zealand is just an unnecessary expense. Horse hair has no benefit that I can think of. They also spend a lot of energy making the mattresses look appealing, but that hardly matters when you put the mattress protector and sheets on the mattress.
Stearns and Foster gets one of the lowest customer satisfaction ratings out of all of the major manufacturers. Mattress review aggregation site Sleep Like The Dead reports that Stearns and Foster gets a 58% customer satisfaction rating, which is the lowest out of any innerspring mattress manufacturer that they cover. People commonly complain that it wears down quickly. This is very disappointing for something so expensive. Which brings me to…
All of these downfalls might be bearable if Stearns and Foster didn’t sell some of the most expensive mattresses on many showroom floors. They have some “entry level” models for around $1500 for a queen set, and you can find models for over $3500. And like I said before, it’s a MAP product, which means you can’t even get showrooms to compete on price. There’s just no reason to spend that much money on something that has so many drawbacks.
Alternative to Stearns and Foster
If you tried a Stearns and Foster in a showroom and liked it, I’d recommend also trying out a Serta iSeries mattress.
Serta gets higher customer satisfaction ratings than Stearns and Foster, the iSeries Applause was recommended by Consumers Reports as a good mattress (though that was a few years ago), and it has a similar construction to the Stearns and Foster. Namely, the coil system is very similar. Stearns and Foster mattresses use a “coil in coil” design in which there is a smaller coil inside of a larger coil. This has the effect of making the mattress slightly softer at first, but then much firmer when it hits the second layer of coil. The image below might help you see what I mean.
Stearns and Foster uses a coil they call the “intellicoil” which works very similarly.
Serta iSeries is also a MAP product, meaning it’s the same price everywhere, but the prices are generally a bit lower than Stearns and Foster. You lose the materials that “sound luxurious,” but you don’t lose any of the real quality. Serta iSeries gets a higher customer satisfaction rating than Stearns and Foster (about 68% vs 58%) and it’s a lower price.
You can find Serta iSeries at your local retailers, or buy online from US Mattress.
For more information on mattress shopping, see my Mattress Buying Guide.