The increasingly fast pace of our lives has made it extremely difficult to flock commercial centers or departmental stores whenever we’re on the hunt for a worthy sleeping mattress. The rising trend of internet-based stores and listings has taken the sleep industry into its folds as well, with fresh competition springing up based on strong online presence.
Nectar is one such manufacturer that attempts to cut out a share of the market by taking an innovative approach towards following the sinkage problem, through an all-foam construction reinforced by an extra-stiff support core. Right at its neck is Bear, a 25 years old family business that has carried out significant R&D with specific focus on athletics and the short- & long-term pains that originate out of strenuous workout regimes.
The following Nectar vs Bear comparison attempts to dissect each company’s offering and provide you with a clear picture, thus helping you make a quick and targeted decision based on your comforts.
The Nectar mattress was designed in America but is made in China. It’s a good choice for someone looking for a conventional memory foam-based build at an affordable price.
The Nectar’s cover is made of an organic fiber, i.e. Tencel, which is a derivative of eucalyptus pulp. The fabric is similar to cotton in terms of softness and doesn’t elicit any harmful skin reactions. The breathability is far superior to that of cotton and is resistant to a bug infestation. The manufacturer’s claims are certified by OEKO-TEX, an independent environmental testing and certification system, classifying it as Standard 100, Class 1 certified.
To ensure that your comfort is never degraded throughout the lifespan of the mattress, Nectar offers a free replacement of the cover in case it gets damaged. It must be appreciated that the cover’s replacement policy is separate from the main warranty policy.
The top layer of the mattress under the cover has a thickness of 1 inch, composed of quilted gel viscoelastic foam, which is responsible for its quick adaptive response. The layer takes the edge off the initial load put on the mattress, before transferring it further down. In addition, the gel acts as a conductor for heat, preventing its accumulation resulting in greater breathability and thus, enhanced comfort.
Featuring a thickness of 3” and an ILD rating of 15, this is layer is composed of gel memory foam. As the layer’s thickness is greater than that of the first, the contoured response to your body’s load is steadied down. The purpose behind this layer’s characteristics is to allow the mattress to adapt to your changing positions, as you sleep, without bringing too much volatility.
This layer sits between the two upper soft layers and the hard support base below it. Its made up of 0.5” of Adaptive Hi-Core foam, with an ILD rating of 45. The Hi-Core foam adds lumbar support to the equation, much-needed to prevent posterior problems. Furthermore, the stiffness of the layer slows down the inward sinkage of your body into the mattress.
This is the base of the mattress and is responsible for unyielding support to your body’s load after the first three layers have adjusted themselves. In order to generate the necessary upward force, the layer has a thickness of 5.5” and is made from 55 ILD 2.2 lbs./cu.ft. polyurethane foam. The support role played by this layer prevents any further sinkage as well as the stress that can affect the joints & muscles as a result.
Firmness and Feel
Comfort and Support
Nectar synergizes the plush response of memory foam with the stiff support of polyurethane base, resulting in a medium level of firmness, as expected from a layered mattress. Compared to other viscoelastic products, the Adaptive Hi-Core transition layer found in the mattress warrants a more supportive and former feel. This is extremely soothing as it neutralizes the inward pressure of the body absorbed by the mattress.
The mattress has a high level of pressure relief to offer due to these attributes, with the foam adopting to your body without trapping you within it.
As you ease up on the mattress, especially on the sides, the viscoelastic nature of the foam causes the mattress to sink in. But due to the substantial increase in the ILD rating as the layers progress, the inward progression is halted, providing superior edge support.
The Gel Memory Foam that makes up the first layer makes sure thermal dissipation is kept as high as possible for viscoelastic products. This is further supplemented by the high degree of ventilation due to the air channels in the base. The Tencel cover also plays a vital role in distributing your body’s heat and preventing it from accumulating. However, the memory foam’s cradling action may make its temperature a bit hotter for sensitive sleepers.
The multi-layered design of the mattress limits motion transfer by a great extent. As the layers progress, they get thicker, resulting in an increasingly damped response, especially the fourth and final layer which absorbs abrupt shocks, which may disrupt deep-sleep. This is a common case for people who are sensitive to movements made by their partner whilst they sleep.
Put head-to-head with Bear, Nectar is less expensive. The mattress gets even cheaper if the coupon code is utilized, cutting of an extra $125. The shipping is free as well. Nonetheless, this doesn’t mean that Nectar doesn’t fare well in terms of quality as it makes sure all materials are world-class and backs its claims through warranty policies. In simple words, this is a premium quality memory foam for a highly affordable price, delivering the loudest bang for your buck.
Nectar’s cover fabric ensures maximum breathability and is classified as OEKO-TEX Standard 100, Class 1 Certified, making it bed bug resistant, a point of concern for several neatness enthusiasts. The fabric Tencel is completely organic and doesn’t react with the skin even after extended periods of contact.
Signature viscoelastic feel
To make up for the pitfalls of typical memory foams, Nectar has added an extra layer of extra-firm foam in the middle, adding to the overall resistivity of the mattress. This is primarily to keep your body from sinking too much into the mattress, while providing a contoured response. It achieves this feat through its Hi-Core Adaptive Memory Foam.
The plethora of health benefits that Celliant incorporates can’t be found in Nectar’s mattress. Celliant will promote proper flow of heat, preventing it from dissipating while giving it back to your body without causing any sweating or overheating. For athletes or work-out enthusiasts, the cover can alleviate joint pains and aches, as well as help deal with several other health problems. If you’re looking for a mattress that compliments your health, while you sleep, then you’d have to go with Bear.
Nectar Mattresses come with a 365-day trial period, which is enough for any person’s body to adapt to a new product and identify its faults. In retrospect, Bear offers only 100 days, which may not be enough for people who like to explore all nooks of a product before passing their judgement.
As good as it gets, the Lifetime Warranty is a show of Nectar’s belief in its products. In comparison, Bear only has a 10-year warranty. When combined with the price tag, this definitely makes Nectar a top contender for anyone looking to get a comfy, quality mattress on a budget.
Bear’s mattresses also fall under the memory foam umbrella; however, these are specially designed to consider the need of athletes. The products are only available online and stand out of the crowd with its “Celliant” recovery technology.
The Bear features a Celliant Cover that allows the body’s heat to be converted into infrared energy. This gives the mattress above-average thermal regulation and energy efficiency. It is claimed that the Celliant infused mattress is capable of alleviating a number of health problems such as aches & pains due to accidents or high-intensity workouts. The science behind Celliant Technology has been discussed later on.
With an ILD of 9 pounds and 1” thickness, the first layer boasts Cool Graphite-Gel Memory foam. The Graphite Gel makes this layer responsive enough to resume its original form after the pressure is applied, giving it a slow “bounce-back”. This significantly increases the contour that can be achieved but keeps it in check due to the limited thickness. The gel also takes away the issue of efficient air-flow, something that plagues several memory foams.
This layer is composed of Quick Response Foam with a 10 ILD and 1.5” thickness. This supplements the “bounce-back” of the first layer and you can actually feel your body pushed back after the initial application of load.
Also made up of Quick Response Foam, and an extension of the second, this layer has a 1” thickness and an ILD of 18. The former gives it a unique response compared to the upper layer, absorbing more impact and damping unnecessary movements.
This is the base layer, boasting an ILD of 30 and 6.5” thickness. While this is sufficient for absorbing impacts generated by a comparatively heavier individual, a load more than 500 pounds can result in sinkage. This makes the mattress unfit if you plan on sharing it with your partner.
In comparison with Nectar, the sinkage problem is less pronounced due to a greater ILD, i.e. 55, and thus greater load resisting capability.
Firmness and Feel
Comfort and Support
Choosing a mattress is no piece of cake as every person gets a different level of comfort and support from every mattress. The uniqueness of each person is catered for by Bear by designing a mattress that lies in middle of the spectrum. The adaptable level of support due to the design of the progressing layer makes the mattress a suitable choice for a wide variety of people.
The first two layers of the mattress in particular are responsible for this adaptability. The combination of memory foam and quick response foam results in a high level of contouring while keeping the sag to a minimum. This makes it a wise choice for people with awkward postures since it relieves the hips, shoulders and sides of any pressure that may develop overnight.
Whether you’re sleeping on your stomach, your back or your sides, the Bear can keep your body aligned correctly in all positions. The high-density foam base is responsible for this and halts contouring from progressing past the upper layers, keeping you steady.
In terms of edge support, the Bear performs much like any other viscoelastic mattress i.e. not especially impressively. The memory foam layers are immediately pliable under your body weight, which means you should be prepared for sinking / sliding from the edges if you sit there for extended periods of time.
Memory foam mattresses carry the curse of poor heat transfer with them. In order to deal with this issue, Bear has designed a two-fold solution. This is where the Celliant Technology cover comes in. The result of decades of inter-disciplinary research, the advent of Celliant Technology has provided mattress manufacturers a new way to deal with heat dissipation problems in memory foams.
It does so by converting the body’s heat into infrared energy, preventing the temperature of the foam from shooting up or heat from progressing too inward. The Celliant cover in this mattress works in a similar manner, while the Graphite Gel in the first layer takes care of any energy that seeps further down and threatens to accumulate.
That being said, the Nectar’s simpler approach of a Tencel cover and cooling gel is stable able to pull off better cooling.
A restful sleep with minimal interventions is necessary for proper well-being of the body. Bear has taken this factor into consideration, and as a test when a 20-pound medicine ball was dropped on one side of the bed, with another identical ball placed on the other side, minimum motion was observed in the latter.
Celliant technology utilizes thermoactive minerals to convert the body’s radiant heat into infrared energy, which is then sent back to the body. This doesn’t mean that the body will gain the heat it lost before as infrared rays don’t have the same heating effect on the body. In fact, scientists and researchers claim that the rays have beneficial effects on the body, specifically for those who spend a lot of time on physical activities. It is believed that the rays boost the oxygen levels, ultimately helping the body ward off stress.
By boosting the oxygen levels, infrared rays can also help people who suffer from problems such as High Blood Sugar, Arthritis, Congestive Heart Failure and Muscle tears. If you’re interested, you can find out more about the tests carried out on Celliant technology, here.
Better overall thermal regulation
The Nectar may outperform the Bear in terms of pure cooling, but when considering temperature regulation all year round, the Bear, with the aforementioned Celliant technology in its cover, is the winner. It conserves and reflects your body heat, and the resulting regulation of your blood flow ensures an optimum temperature whether the ambient conditions are cold or hot.
Which Way To Go?
Here are some reasons to consider the Nectar:
- Price is a factor: Both Nectar and Bear cost $850, however, when the discount coupons are put into account, Nectar wins the competition, costing $725. This makes it a wise choice for someone on a budget, looking for a reliable product that stands the test of time.
- You want a classic memory foam product: The Nectar may have harder bottom layers, but it still offers a premium product with a 360-degree viscoelastic experience. It guarantees the steady, contouring response due to which memory foams are chosen in the first place.
- Therefore, if you’re in search of the comforts associated with such mattresses, then Nectar is the way to go.
- You want a comfortable cover: Nectar boasts a Tencel cover, completely organic and having a feel similar to cotton, minus any heat retention. This makes it perfect for people who don’t want to risk their skin with synthetic materials and get exposed to skin-related issues.
- You want more cooling: Both Nectar and Bear mattresses have Gel-based upper layers to deal with the problem of heat accumulation. Despite the hi-tech Celliant technology present in the Bear, the Nectar edges ahead in terms of heat dissipation (as far as viscoelastic products go) thanks to the breathable, naturally derived Tencel fabric of its cover.
- You’re not certain about the investment yet: Nectar gives its customers 365 days to decide whether the mattress is worth it or not. This gives you ample time to get your body adapted to the new mattress and its behavior and make your decision. This is also great for first-timers who aren’t sure of the feel of memory foams. If you’re not satisfied during this duration, you can return the product and get your money back; no strings attached.
- You don’t want the warranty to end: Nectar’s belief in its products is cemented by its lifetime guarantee that comes attached with this mattress. Most mattress, such as the one offered by Bear, have 10-year warranty periods. After that, you’re on the mercy of the mattress and any unforeseen events that may take place. The Nectar’s lifetime warranty means you can be sure that your investment won’t go away and that you’ll be taken care of in case things go wrong.
You may want to go with Bear though, if:
- Made in USA vs. China: While there are absolutely no signs that there is less quality in Nectar’s products due to its country of production, if you’re looking for a mattress that’s made in USA, you’ll have to pick Bear.
- You’re an awkward sleeper: The upper layers of the mattress are designed to adapt according to the posture you assume while you sleep. The combination of memory + quick response foam means you’ll always have an equal amount of cradle and support. If you frequently change your sleeping position from your back to the stomach to the side but don’t want to wake-up entrenched within your bed, then go for Bear.
- You’re an athlete: The Celliant technology present in the Bear is able to produce effects that ultimately lead to faster recovery from micro-injuries you may have incurred from your strenuous exercise routine.
- You want to save on heating costs: If you live in a climate where winter is the dominant season and you want to avoid paying a premium on heating solutions, the Bear’s Celliant mechanism will help you stay warm in your bedroom by conserving your body heat.
- You value customer support: Bear is a family business, something that’s evident from the way they treat their customers. Response to queries is quick and comprehensive, clearing any doubts regarding the mattress or any problems that may arise.
Both Nectar and Bear have designed excellent products that have some distinct features, and some that overlap. I hope my attempt at an objective and comprehensive comparison turns out to be helpful for you. If you have any queries or confusions, please don’t hesitate to ask in the comments section below.