Helix Mattress Review
Our Rating: (8.5 / Out Of 10)
If you’re like many people, then you’ve likely spent hours of time researching the best mattress for your needs only to be disappointed when you choose a product that doesn’t hold up to your expectations. This is often because you tend to focus on one or two properties such as firmness and bounce and overlook many of the other important aspects of the overall makeup of a mattress.
If this is something that worries you in mattress shopping, then the Helix experience may be just what you need. Helix custom-designs a mattress based on four areas of consideration:
- Point elasticity
They sent us their mattress to review so lets dig in.
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- Dual vs. Blended Comfort Options
- Finishing Your Quiz
- The Algorithm
- Densities and Indentation Load Deflections
- Thickness and Layer Placement
- Examining the Proprietary Blend
- A Few Memory Foam Components
- The Helix Cover
- My Layer Placement
- My Firmness
- Edge Support
- Motion Transfer
- Heat Transfer Capabilities
- Smell and Offgassing
|Material||Density - # of Coils||Thickness||ILD|
|Proprietary Helix Dynamic Foam||1.8+ pcf||2-4 inches||10-36|
|Pocketed Microcoils||Queen exceeds 1350 coils||2-4 inches||10-36|
|Poly Memory Foam Base||1.8+ pcf||2-4 inches||10-36|
|California King||72" x 84"|
|King||76" x 80"|
|Queen||60" x 80"|
|Full||54" x 75"|
|Twin XL||12 x 80 x 38 inches|
|Twin||12 x 75 x 38 inches|
When you order, you’re taken through a Sleep Quiz. Here, you are asked a variety of questions in regards to aspects such as your preferred sleeping position, potential pressure points, and whether or not you sleep hot. Furthermore, they take down information in regards to your physical attributes like height and weight. All of this information is plugged into a tried and tested algorithm that evaluates just how your mattress should be comprised to be a good fit for you.
Before we get into the specifics of my mattress, I’d like to take you for a quick walk through the ordering process. This is important so you can understand how the composition of my product may differ from what you end up receiving.
You’ll start by visiting helixsleep.com. There is a lot of valuable information you can browse through, but, to take your Sleep Quiz, you’ll need to scroll to the bottom of the screen. You’ll start by providing some basic information about yourself like your name, age, weight, height, and gender. If you have a sleeping partner, you’ll also have the opportunity to fill out their information.
For sleeping partners, you have two options, and each have their own benefits. These are blended and dual comfort settings. The names are pretty self-explanatory. While the blended product combines the answers provided for each sleeping partner into a single product, the dual product will create two halves of the mattress which will be merged into a single product.
The blended option has a few features that make it attractive, and the most notable is the fact that it it costs $150 less. This is because Helix doesn’t have to perform the additional work in essentially creating two separate products. Therefore, if the budget is tight, you may prefer this option.
The downside to blended products is that there has to be some compromise. This is especially true if the Sleep Quiz answers for you and your partner are much different. You will find that the partner with significant issues such as pressure points and discomfort will receive precedence. Therefore, if you and your partner do have very different preferences and physical needs, the extra $150 for the dual comfort product could prove to be an investment well worth making.
When you select the dual comfort option, you get to take advantage of the fact that the individual answers you and your partner provide will be solely considered in the creation of your side of the mattress. With most products, you get what you get, and this can make mattress shopping a difficult endeavor for sleeping partners. Helix takes the complication out of the situation.
This option is only available for queen sized models and beyond, but, if you have a sleeping partner, it’s likely you were already preparing to buy a mattress of this size anyway. If you do choose a dual product, just don’t forget to switch sides with your partner if you rotate the mattress!
- What’s your favorite sleeping position? (This is to help them determine proper firmness).
- Do you have any potential pressure points? (This is asked to determine proper support).
- Do you sleep hot or cold? (This is asked to determine proper aeration).
- Do you ever wake up in pain?
- What’s your overall sleep quality?
- What are your firmness preferences?
- Questions about your current mattress and your overall satisfaction with it
Once you have finished answering all the questions, Helix’s website plugs them into an algorithm they have developed, and it quickly provides the results of your quiz. It will show you how you scored on feel, support, temperature, and point elasticity.
I found that the results seemed pretty well-fit for my preferences. However, if anything about your results seem off, you can edit your preferences before placing an order.
Before we get into the various layers of the mattress, let’s discuss their quality. There are two important terms you need to pay attention to as you analyze any mattress product, and these are density and indentation load deflection. These numbers tell you what kind of durability and firmness you can expect.
Since Helix products vary depending on your Sleep Quiz, I am unable to provide you with exactly what you can expect. However, I can tell you that you can expect a density of at least 1.8 pcf throughout the product. Furthermore, your ILD will range from 10 to 36 pounds.
When you order your product, there are three layers you get to enjoy. These consist of:
- Proprietary Helix Dynamic Foam
- Pocketed microcoils
- High-grade polyfoam base
Helix will mix and match these layers in both thickness and layer placement, and their customization is geared toward coming up with the end product that is best matched for you and your sleeping partner. While the thickness varies, I can tell you that you can expect a variance of between two and four inches at each layer.
There are many different foams available in the mattress industry, and two top contenders are latex and memory foam. Each one features their own unique benefits. For example, latex is well-known for durability and breathability while memory foam can reduce pressure points as well as aches and pains. However, there are negative aspects of each type.
Traditional memory foam reacts to heat and pressure, and this can often envelop the sleeper in a way that can make them feel trapped. They can also cause you to become very hot during sleep. Latex is often too expensive for some consumers to afford. Helix recognized these setbacks, but they also kept in mind that there were many positive aspects of each material, and this is what prompted them to create their proprietary Helix Dynamic Foam.
What’s It Made Of?
Since Helix put in so much time and effort into the development of a foam that offers the best of memory foam and latex properties, it would only make sense that they want to keep their formula under wraps, right? Just as Coca-Cola keeps their formula a secret for proprietary purposes, Helix does the same, and this is done for their own protection.
While I can’t tell you much about its composition, I can tell you from first-hand experience what it feels like. My proprietary foam is found on the first layer, and it’s four inches thick. Your thickness and placement may differ depending on the results of your Sleep Quiz.
Does It Perform Like Memory Foam or Latex?
When you push down on the foam, it reacts more like a latex than a memory foam as it quickly bounces back to its original form. Furthermore, it reacts differently than memory foam when it comes to its ability to transfer heat. We put the Helix mattress under The Sleep Judge heat transfer test, and it cooled off far more quickly than my old traditional memory foam mattress.
Now, it’s starting to sound like the Helix Dynamic Foam is more like latex than memory foam. However, as I said, the company made it their goal to combine the best properties of each. As I tested the product, I made sure to see how it responded to motion transfer. When I dropped a 20 pound medicine ball on the product, it only bounced a few times before coming to rest. I then scooted one ball to the side of the mattress and dropped another 20 pound medicine ball next to it. The resting ball barely moved, so it’s clear the proprietary blend created by Helix is able to counteract motion in a way that’s comparable to memory foam.
Memory foam is also well-known for point elasticity, and this represents its ability to help align the spine and reduce pressure points. When you take your Sleep Quiz, one of the questions asked is if you have pressure points. It then goes on to provide examples such as wide hips and broad shoulders as these physical characteristics can often weigh more and therefore create more pressure.
Now, I slept on a traditional memory foam mattress for nearly a decade, and it did a great job at keeping me properly aligned and reducing these pressure points. My point elasticity results from my sleep quiz landed me on the low end, and this has proven to be sufficient for my needs. I have slept on the product for over a week now, and I have yet to wake up with aches in my back and other areas where I’m prone to develop pains.
Examining the Layers
Remember that, since each mattress is manufactured specifically for the consumer, it’s impossible for me to provide you with specific information that you can expect to experience when you receive your Helix product. However, I can provide you with general information to help you better understand the different specs that make a difference in a mattress.
The blue side panels are a little sturdier, and this provides added protection for the mattress within. Overall, I enjoy the appearance of the cover. I would recommend you make the investment in a quality mattress protector. White gets dirty easily, and a protector can extend the life and quality of your product.
The cover of this product features a subtle, dotted pattern, and it’s very soft to the touch. You’ll notice that it is quite thin, and this helps facilitate proper airflow for those of you who sleep hot. Made from 100 percent polyester, you can also enjoy the engagement you get to experience with the foams and microcoils beneath.
There is a slight issue I encountered with my cover that may be a nuisance for you, but it’s not difficult to fix. When you place significant weight on a small area of the bed, you’ll notice that the material bunches up. In my case, I noticed it when making the bed. Furthermore, when I ran various tests on the product such as dropping a 20 pound medicine ball on it to demonstrate motion transfer, there was a noticeable spot on the cover. However, when you pull on the raised portions of the cover and pull them toward either the top or bottom of the mattress depending on the placement, it can easily be evened back out.
My Layer Placement
The Helix cover unzips, so you can take a look for yourself once the product arrives at what they come up with for you. In my case, you can see that the first third of my mattress is comprised of four inches of the proprietary Helix Dynamic Foam we discussed. The next two inches include the microcoils, and my poly foam base is four inches. Since the composition of the foam found at the comfort layer level is proprietary, I’m unable to explain the different colors you’ll find here, but, they are pleasant to the eye!
A great way for you to observe the bounce of this mattress is to press down on all the layers on the corner where edge support is typically lacking. In my case, when I quickly released pressure, the layers immediately resumed their original form. This makes it really easy to move around at night as you find the right position for restful sleep.
My Sleep Quiz revealed that the right mattress for me is a little on the plush side as you can see from the picture here that shows the sticker on the box of my mattress when it arrived. While it’s not on the extremely soft side, it does fall below the halfway point, so I expect my ILD is somewhere around 20 pounds. This would be slightly lower than a typical medium firm product, and this was pretty well-reflected when I tested the product’s firmness.
I stepped on the mattress. At 130 pounds, I applied all of my body weight to an area in the middle of my Helix mattress of nine by seven inches. In this image, you can see what’s level by using my kitchen broom as a visual. The resulting sinkage of my body weight was approximately 6 and a half inches.
This closely mirrored other products I have tested within the ILD I estimated based on my Sleep Quiz results, so I have faith that their system is accurate. Furthermore, I can tell you from experience that the results you can expect from their algorithmic results provide a comfortable firmness that has worked very well in my case.
The support of your Helix mattress is found in the mid-layers of your product, and they provide the right components for the proper alignment of your spine. As you can see here, I look and feel properly aligned in all three sleeping positions, and I never once woke up feeling like I was in pain. I suffered a neck injury about five years ago, and it’s not uncommon for me to wake up with mild aches in this area, but this was not a problem for me on my Helix custom mattress. Your level of support will be determined considering you weight and height.
Let’s face it. You’re not going to spend all your time lying on the mattress. If you’re like me, you may take a moment to sit on the edge as you help kids with homework or watch television. Edge support, therefore, is important to consider, and you also want to know how much you can expect as very little edge support can make it easy for you to fall out of the bed.
As I mentioned, edge support on the corners of my Helix mattress was lacking, and I felt myself compress the various layers until it bottomed out. A lack of edge support in the corners is not unusual. However, when I sat in the middle of the side of the mattress, I only noticed compression in the first six inch comfort layer. However, the poly foam base did not feel as though it was impacted at all, so you do receive the support you need to keep from sliding out.
Have you ever been on the verge of drifting off to sleep when the person next to you starts moving around and disrupting your relaxation? Or maybe you have had trouble in the past even getting to the point of sleep due to a restless partner. If so, you have experienced a mattress that does little to counteract motion transfer.
This is an aspect that can be easy to overlook as you shop, but it can have serious consequences once you do make a purchase. I’m glad to report that, in my experience, the Helix mattress does do a good job at isolating motion. Using two 20 pound medicine balls, I was able to see very clearly how much one impacted the other. With one resting near the middle of the mattress, I dropped the other from eye level, and there was little apparent movement. I can also report that, when I slept with my daughter, her frequent movements were barely noticeable.
I was impressed that a bed with the bounce of the Helix could also counteract motion transfer so well. However, since the microcoils are individually wrapped, this means they work independently of one another, and this certainly improves motion isolation. Furthermore, they are designed using thinner, more flexible wires. This is unlike many innerspring products that are not only uncomfortable to sleep on but also difficult to use with a partner.
Heat Transfer Capabilities
Many don’t realize it, but a good night’s rest isn’t all about getting warm and cozy under the covers. In fact, quite the opposite is true as you don’t enter the deeper stages of sleep until your body temperature drops just slightly. Now, everyone’s body is different, and some have more difficulty than others in achieving this drop in temperature. However, if you tend to sleep hot, it’s important to find the best cooling mattress for your needs. The Helix cooling system is unaided by any chemicals or cooling gels. It’s strictly reliant on airflow through materials.
In my case, I don’t tend to overheat during sleep, and I think this was accurately reflected in my Sleep Quiz results. On a scale of mild to cool, I was right in the middle. This seemed to work well considering my typical needs. However, as I do with every product, I went ahead and put this product under The Sleep Judge heat transfer test to show you how it compares with our current top contender, the Dreamfoam Ultimate Dreams Eurotop mattress.
Each test was performed in a temperature controlled setting of 64 degrees Fahrenheit. I laid on the products for 30 minutes, enough time to allow my body heat to penetrate into the products. When I removed myself, I allowed my thermal imaging camera to allow me to observe how quickly my body heat was dispelled from each product. Dreamfoam took 5.5 minutes compared to 14 minutes and 38 seconds for the Helix product.
However, I’d like to reiterate, this is the performance you can expect in the mid range of Helix’s temperature settings. Therefore, if sleeping cool is of particular importance to you, all you have to do is make that notation on your Sleep Quiz. Before you order, you can check to ensure your results put you on the cool end of the spectrum.
Smell and Offgassing
Offgassing is an occurrence that’s not unusual in new products. From sneakers and cars to mattresses and more, it’s common to experience a chemical smell during the early hours or days of using the product. This is due to the release of volatile organic compounds that are produced during the manufacturing process.
In the case of the Helix mattress, I did notice a slight smell. However, it was not in any way overwhelming. While you could still detect the smell when you directly placed your nose on the mattress for about 24 hours following the unboxing, I was not able to detect it as I slept using my pillow after just a few hours. While there are no indications that VOC’s are harmful to your health, if they bother you particularly, you may want to allow your Helix mattress a day to completely air out before you use it. However, I believe you’ll find that simply placing a fitted sheet over the cover will prove sufficient.
Overall, I found my custom Helix mattress to be comfortable and supportive for my unique needs. Other than the fact that the cover does tend to bunch up when considerable weight is isolated to a small area, it’s not difficult to even it back out, and it only occurs when you push on certain areas of the product.
I feel this is a great option for anyone who appreciates customization or for sleeping partners looking for a solution to accommodate both of their sleeping needs. Once you purchase the Helix, you want it to last as long as possible. There are some things you can do to ensure yours lasts as long as possible, so here are some tidbits of information you need to know.
Is A Foundation Needed?
Is A Mattress pad or protector needed?
A mattress pad or protector is not required, but I’d recommend you invest in one, especially if children or pets will be using the product. Since the cover is white, the investment will be worth it.
Does it work on adjustable beds?
Are Returns Hassle Free?
What’s the Warranty?
Is There A Trial Available?
Does It Need To Be Rotated
Many products that go the extra mile in offering customization make it obvious in the price. However, Helix is able to keep costs low. Since they ship straight to their customers, they are able to cut the middle man out of the equation, and these savings are passed on to you. The following table shows you the various prices you can expect depending on the size. Remember that, if you plan to purchase a dual comfort product, than you will have to pay an additional $150.
- Twin- $600
- Twin XL- $700
- Full- $850
- Queen- $995
- King- $1,195
- California King- $1,195
I hope I have succeeded thus far not only in portraying my experience with the Helix mattress but also in helping you better understand how their customization process works. However, some of the information I’ve passed on is strictly based on my opinion. Therefore, to help provide you with the most well-rounded information possible, I browsed around to see what other verified customers had to say. Following is a chart of some of the primary pros and cons I was able to gather.
- Reduction in back problems and other pains
- Great customer service response
- Minimal offgassing
- Dual option helps sleep partners get a proper night’s rest
- Some complaints of product being too soft or firm
- Cover is too thin and bunches
With so many products on the market, customers get little to no options. You simply order and hope for the best based off your research. However, Helix takes much of the research out of the equation, and they have taken the bed-in-a-box industry to a new level as they help guide customers through the design of the best product specifically for them. I have found that my Sleep Quiz was very accurate in delivering the type of mattress that works best for me, and I appreciated the fact that they covered all their bases in the various questions asked.
I would highly recommend this product for sleeping partners. Even if you’re on a budget and can’t afford the additional $150 investment in the dual comfort option, the blended option can help create a product that will be best considering the needs of both you and your partner.
There is a weight limit on this product, and that would be 350 pounds for an individual and 500 pounds for a couple. Therefore, if you exceed this weight limit, you should continue shopping. However, Helix has proven helpful and can be a great option for those who suffer with aches and pains when they wake up or tend to sleep hot as these issues are all uniquely considered during the manufacturing process.
Our Final Verdict
I have tried out quite a few products, but Helix is unique in their delivery. I enjoyed the ability to have a say in the way my mattress was constructed, and I was intrigued with their proprietary foam. While it’s not memory foam and it’s not latex, it has an interesting dynamic that features some of the best aspects of each of these popular foam materials. I was intrigued with the level of bounce provided by the microcoils considering the very low degree of motion transfer that results when someone moves around on the mattress.
I would strongly suggest, however, that you do invest in a quality mattress protector. Not only will this help preserve the white cover, but it can also help reduce the frustration that may result when the thin cover bunches up when isolated pressure is applied to the surface of this product.
All in all, Helix is a great product for those who have struggled in the past to find a mattress that offers the best in firmness, support, temperature regulation, and point elasticity. Here at The Sleep Judge, we make it our goal to help match our users with the best products to meet their specific needs. I hope I’ve helped you decide whether or not the Helix mattress would be the best investment for you. However, if you have further questions or would like to comment, please do so below. We’ll get back with you promptly.
- Dual option helps sleep partners get a proper night’s rest
- Great customer service response
- Minimal offgassing
- Reduction in back problems and other pains
- In-depth sleep quiz ensures you get what you need
- Some complaints of product being too soft or firm