How are mattresses tested? An overview

Right – we heard you. As we received many request upon publishing out lastย How are mattresses tested?ย post, we decided to give you what you want – an overview and detailed version of this topic.

Surely you have been confronted with this situation yourself – you want to buy a new mattress and you just can not decide on a model for the oversupply. There are softer mattresses, hard mattresses, quality mattresses, cheap mattresses. The best way to keep track here whenever you need a mattress is to look at mattress comparison. Luckily, there are a lot of different mattress tests available so you can orientate yourself on the experience and knowledge of others and compare different mattresses. In Hong Kong, there is currently only one official testing institute, namely the Consumer Council in Hong Kong. Here with Best mattress we would like to give you an overview of how such a test is structured and works. The only way to find out if the mattress keeps what it promises.

how do you test mattress

How do you test mattresses?

A mattress test gives you detailed information about different aspects of a particular brand and / or type of mattress. They are very helpful because they allow you to compare different models and choose one that best suits your needs. This makes the purchase much less risky – especially if you decide to buy from an online mattress dealer. But how exactly are mattresses checked and tested? In a few week Best Mattress is going to publish the laboratory based testing results. How do we do? Let us explain it to you!

Best Mattress Hong Kong test criteria:

  1. Durability test: simulates the use of the mattress over a period of 6-8 years.
  2. Point Elasticity test: measure the ability to compress in a very small area without affecting the area beside it.
  3. Zoning test: assess the ergonomics of the mattress.
  4. Subjective comfort test: people in different weight and size lying down on the mattresses and tell us their opinion.
  5. Washing test: evaluate the shrinkage of the cover after washing at 40ยฐ/60ยฐ.
  6. Ease of use:ย assessment of how heavy the mattress is, how easy is to transport it.

Explanation of tests:

1.Durability (life time check)DIN EN1957

This test consists of simulating the normal use of the mattress over a period of 6 to 8 years to observe how its functionality changes. In other words, it serves to see how the hardness changes over time. Whether the weight of the person is 60 kg, 80 kg or heavier he is are also taken into account.

First, we take the model out of the packaging. In the first week we roll with a roller until 100 cycles are completed and after 5 hours we check its hardness. After this first test, the roll will go through up to 15,000 cycles again, and then we can measure the hardness again and extract the results.

The first machine used is a 140 kg rolling mill which, as mentioned above, rolls 100 cycles in the first step and 15,000 cycles in the second step on the mattress. In this way, a usage of 6-8 years is simulated.

The second machine used is a test bench with rollers that measures the hardness of the mattress after 100 and 15,000 rolling cycles.

Two machines used in testing the mattresses:

Test bench

Test bench

mattress test-measures the hardness of the mattress after the mattress goes through the 100 and 15.000 rolling mill cycles

The test bench machines provide two important key figures:

1.The technical hardness: the force necessary to sink the mattress by 1mm
2.The subjective hardness: the degree of hardness of the mattress on a scale from 1 (very hard) to 10 (very soft).


Roling mill

simulate the normal usage of the mattress during a number of nights equal to 6-8 years

How are the results rated?

The best mattress would be one that retains the same initial characteristics and provides the same support after several years of use. To evaluate it, we check the values โ€‹โ€‹of the technical hardness in the initial conditions (we do it after the first 100 cycles) with those obtained after 15,000 cycles, and we get the percentage (%) of the hardness loss. We also remove the cover and check if it has damaged the inside (both the core and the sides). The lower the percentage of strength loss, the higher the durability of the mattress.

2. Point Elasticity Test – DIN SPEC68200200

The purpose of this test is to test the ability of a mattress to squeeze into a small area without affecting the rest of the mattress (especially the adjacent area). For clarity, an example: We want to know if you will wake up when your partner (or pet) is lying next to you at night.

How shall we do it?

The test is performed with an indenter that applies force to the mattress at two specific points according to regulations. The indenter is just above the center or core of the mattress and 450 mm to the side, coinciding with the shoulder area and the final value being the height of the midpoint between the two hemispheres. Thus, the independence of the pages can be appreciated.

mattress test indenter

Mattress test machine – indenter

How are the results rated?

The higher the height of the center, the better the elasticity point of the model. This means that the mattress can further compress sinking body parts without compromising support for the rest of the body.

The point of elasticity is the ability to push down a very small area without affecting the environment. This test can be used to assess whether the movements of a second person in bed disturbs the sleep of others.


This test analyzes how the mattress adapts to the body. How does the test work?

How well is the weight of my back supported?

The purpose of this test is to check how the body sinks along the mattress and to obtain a curve showing the areas that the mattress has (3, 5 or 7 zones).

Mattress zoning test

Mattress zoning illustration: leg support, lower middle body and lower body support.

How is the test performed?

The machine contains several hooks that push different points on the surface, creating small gaps and measuring how far these points sink.

How do we evaluate the results?

The results we get are a series of values โ€‹โ€‹(in mm) that represent the degree of descent at each of the points reflected in a graph where you can easily identify the different areas.

Based on the results of 2 or 3 specific points on the mattress, we can determine the degree of support for the back and side position when sleeping.


This test is conducted on the basis of the different opinions of people and their opinions about the models under test.

How does it work?

Test models are covered to avoid distortions.

Subjects are invited to rate the mattress on a scale of 1 to 10. Usually this test uses a lighter and a heavier person. This test measures things like comfort, body contouring, support and alignment of the test person’s spine. It can be determined how far a person sinks and whether they get the right support. A mattress should also conform to the body, which means that the spine stays in a straight line in a lateral sleeping position.

How are the results rated?

Each model receives a final rating based on the average of all participants’ ratings.


This test analyzes the amount of material that shrinks after washing the cover according to the washing instructions.

mattress washing

How does it work?

The different ends of the cover are measured before and after washing at the maximum temperature recommended in the instructions.

How are the results rated?

The larger the material reduction area, the worse the rating.


Here the weight and the ease of turning are evaluated.

mattress with leg

What is it for?

The goal is to assess how easy it is to move or rotate the mattress if a customer needs it.

And how do we carry out this test?

In this category we pay attention to two main aspects: the weight and whether there are handles or not (and their position).

How do we evaluate the results?

The heavier the mattress is, the harder it is to move and transport it. Therefore, there are lower scores for heavy models. If handles are placed in the right places there is a high score.

As far as the grip system is concerned, we usually state it as follows:

1 – No handles

5 – The handles are under the mattress.

10 – The handles are on the side of the mattress.

Other tests we perform are:

1. Check if the mattress gives off a certain odor when opening.

Because with cold foam or latex mattresses it can happen that they smell a bit unpleasant at first. It is typical that when you make these types, certain gases are released that you will later smell when you remove the brand new mattress from its packaging for the first time. However, these gases are completely safe if the models are equipped with the ร–kotex seal.

2. Check for moisture retention to find out if it is suitable for people who perspire heavily.

If you already have a shortlisted model, make sure it has received a good rating from our or other testing methods. The model that you acquire should be a good buy, after all, they spend a third of your life in bed!

Whether your favorite is the ideal mattress can be found on our comparison page.

But our results should certainly help you to find the right mattress!


If you already have a model in mind, make sure it has received a good rating from our or other testing methods. The model that you acquire should be a good buy, after all, they spend a third of your life in bed!

To see Best Mattress Hong Kong recommended mattress, kindly follow the link toย Our Review Page