Our friends at Real Simple know a good, lifestyle-enhancing product when they see one—so what happened when they pooled their collective expertise to assemble the ultimate mattress? We put it to the test and here's what we found.

By Danica Lo
Updated February 28, 2018
Real Sleep mattress

We've always admired our colleagues and friends over at Real Simple for their easygoing nature, can-do attitude, and chic-but-approachable minimalist aesthetic—so when we heard that Real Simple editors had pooled their collective expertise to create the Real Sleep mattress, we knew we had to give it a try.

The Real Sleep mattress clocks in at medium-firm—"a 7 on a scale of 1 to 10 in firmness," according to the site—and is constructed from FloraFlex memory foam which is supportive (no painful pressure points!), responsive, and cooling—its top layer and organic cover draws heat away from the body while you sleep and keeps air flow on point.

But our favorite thing about the Real Sleep by Real Simple mattress in a box? It was super-easy to buy—and arrived at our doors after just a few clicks of the computer mouse, in a couple of days, packaged snugly in an ultra-manageable box.

See, before the advent of beds-in-boxes-sent-from-the-internet, shopping for a new mattress in New York City was...fraught. Finding a non-shady bed store, lying awkwardly on beds where others have gone before you, arranging a delivery window, navigating stairs, tipping everyone involved—not to mention the overall expense, uncomfortable back-and-forth negotiations and bargaining, and never quite knowing whether you were getting a deal. Fast forward to 2018 and the internet has made mattress shopping an easy one-click affair—price comparisons, customer reviews, YouTube videos, Better Business Bureau reports are all available at your fingertips from the comfort of your own home. All you need is a credit card and a shiny new mattress can be yours, usually in under four business days and tracked by recorded delivery.

Also the best? The ooh-and-aah factor of unpacking a vacuum-sealed bed-in-a-box. One moment it's a giant pancake sat lifelessly on your bedframe—and a few minutes later, it's grown into a floofy snuggly oblong. Magical.

How did the Real Sleep by Real Simple mattress fare in real life use? Fantastic.

Truth is, this wasn't my first mail-order bed—and I'm sure it won't be my last. Experts recommend that you invest in a new mattress about once every ten years and I was due for an upgrade. For someone like me who has pretty typical middle-aged office-computer-worker slash heavy-handbag-carrier complaints and back pain—bonus: I'm a side sleeper who prefers to sleep on the side where my shoulder feels pretty wrecked from typing and schlepping 8-10 hours a day—the Real Sleep mattress, with its no-painful-pressure-points super-high-tech exclusive memory foam formulation was a godsend. I can sleep through the night in whatever contortions I want to and wake up well-rested without a twisted neck or pins-and-needles arm. Generally, not being in pain makes me a more pleasant person in the office, so, I suppose, by proxy, my coworkers are also benefiting from my new purchase.

Some of them have even gone so far as to bring the Real Sleep mattress into their own homes—and find that not only is the mattress great for sleeping, it's also great for snacking (on—as in sitting on, not eating). All you people who like to stay tucked in bed while binge-watching Netflix on the weekends, take note.

"While I’m definitely a big fan of a great night’s sleep—which this mattress absolutely provides—I’m also usually hungry from the second I wake up until I finally close my eyes at night," says audience engagement manager Caroline Schnapp. "More often than not, that calls for eating in bed. This mattress is both super-soft and supportive, two very important things for both sleeping and snacking. It’s the perfect cushion to sink back on while I tuck into giant bowl of popcorn, but also offers me the necessary firmness to rest my milk-filled cereal bowl on while I reach over to my nightstand for a refill. Most importantly, I know this mattress has my back (literally)—no matter now much meat I eat before bed, it’s super breathable, which means I stay cool throughout the night, a.k.a. no meat sweats."

No meat sweats: now there's a ringing endorsement you don't hear everyday.

The Real Sleep Mattress is available online, priced from $540 to $1,035. Have you tried one? Tell us what you think by tagging us on social media @foodandwine.

Now you can get the bedroom of your dreams, on us! Enter the Real Sleep by Real Simple Bedroom Makeover Sweepstakes here or go to www.realsleep.com. The Real Sleep Bedroom Makeover is worth $2,500 and will run from March 1, 2018 through March 21, 2018. One winner will be drawn on March 22, 2018. Our bedroom makeover includes the following: Real Sleep Mattress of your choice, Real Simple complete bedding set, Real Simple Cleaning Product Set .