If you are walking with aches and pains and know your mattress is to blame, the time has come to consider your mattress replacement choices. You may have already started to take a look at what is currently available on the market, and if you have, you’ve also most likely become familiar with some of the leading brands currently available.
Memory foam is a popular mattress material, and one of the leading industrial leaders is TEMPUR-Pedic due to their innovative TEMPUR foam introduced in 1992 which changed the shape of the mattress industry. They have created four separate series of designs to help meet the needs of consumers, two being the TEMPUR-Cloud and TEMPUR-Contour mattress lines – both specializing in sleep comfort needs.
At first glance you may be unaware of exactly where the differences lie between the two, but I’m here today to help provide you with the very clear contrast these series of mattresses provide.
TEMPUR-Cloud Series- Your Softest Version
In 2009 The TEMPUR Company introduced its softest mattress line to date: the Cloud series. This was a series of six mattresses with varying levels of soft surfaces. Since then, TEMPUR has addressed their consumer’s needs and created the line as we currently know it: now offering four levels of comfort. The most firm of the line, the Prima, is followed by the Supreme, Elite, and Luxe concerning degrees of softness. Both the Supreme and Luxe can be purchased with the additional Breeze technology as well.
The Pros and Cons
- Soft pressure relief
- Good for side sleepers
- 6 styles to choose from
- Good motion isolation
- May sleep hot (Breeze option available)
- Specific to certain sle
Each of the mattresses are created with a four layer foam construction. The initial comfort layer that you first come in contact with is a TEMPUR-ES (extra soft) layer of 4.1lb/cu.ft density, and varies in thickness depending on the level of softness the mattress boasts. Each comfort layer is then supported by a layer of 5.3lb/cu.ft TEMPUR foam.
Beneath your TEMPUR layers are two 2.1lb/cu.ft poly foam layers of different thicknesses to provide structure and support, as well as increased airflow.
As mentioned, these mattresses were created with the specific goal to provide the softest sleeping surface possible without sacrificing support and structure. Geared towards side sleepers due to the spinal alignment issues that can occur on two firm a surface, the Cloud mattresses are supposed to address the pressure points often found in the shoulders and hips. The softness of the initial foam layer cradles the body and disperses the weight to keep this from happening.
Because memory foams were created to provide an ‘enveloping’ feel when your body sinks into it, heat issues often arise. This is generally true of most memory foams, although TEMPUR does have a high complaint rate concerning this which is what influenced them to work with new cooling technologies.
Since the Cloud mattresses are the softest of all products offered by TEMPUR, they do have a higher complaint rate of heat retention due to this fact. Because of this two of the choices are offered with TEMPUR-Breeze technology which combines cooling materials within the top layers to help increase airflow and reduce heat retention without sacrificing softness.
Soft surfaces are somewhat problematic for many sleepers if laying on their side isn’t their preference. This can become an issue for anyone who shares their bed with somebody who has a different sleep position. Heavier bodies may also sink quit a bit and find the soft surfaces less supportive.
Another issue that may arise is how hot this bed may sleep. The deeper the sink, the more materials surrounds you, causing heat retention. The TEMPUR-Breeze option may solve this issue for some sleepers, but it also costs quite a bit more, and TEMPUR mattresses are already considered quite expensive in comparison to many competitive products currently on the market.
TEMPUR-Contour Series- Your Firmest Choice
The Contour Series was one of the original mattress lines offered by TEMPUR-Pedic as a firmer sleep option. Offering four different choices of firmness, this line is geared towards back and stomach sleepers to help with spinal alignment and support. The Supreme is the most firm of the mattresses followed by the Elite and Rhapsody Luxe, with the Elite also offered with the additional Breeze option as well.
The Pros and Cons
- Good for back and stomach sleepers
- 4 styles to choose from
- Cooler sleep
- Excellent motion isolation
- Most expensive options
- Off-gassing issues
- May be too firm
Like the Cloud, the Contour mattresses are also created with four layers of foam, but the comfort layers are created with the TEMPUR-HD (high density) 7.1lb/cu.ft. option, and vary in thickness to help create the differences between firm surface. This layer is then supported by a 5.3lb/cu.ft. TEMPUR foam to help disperse weight and transfer heat away from the body.
Beneath these two TEMPUR layers are two more, 2.1lb/cu.ft poly foam layers of different thicknesses to provide structure and support, as well as increased airflow.
Many issues arise with back and stomach sleepers due to the lack of support that allows the natural spinal curvature to occur without misaligning it. This is why a firmer support is important if you sleep in these positions to allow your spine to fall naturally into place without being forced into unnatural arches due to body weight. The choices provided by the Contour line seem to address these issues well according to consumer reviews, although they definitely are too firm a choice for anyone who sleeps on their side.
The lack of motion transfer is also worth noting. If you sleep with a partner this bed is particularly noted to have excellent lack of movement from one side of the bed to the other- keeping you from having an interrupted night’s sleep.
Complaints surrounding heat retention concerning memory foam in general is typically due to the ‘hug’ of the material being used. Fortunately a firmer surface has less of this effect, and therefore heat is more easily dispersed away from the body. Despite a Breeze version of the Elite mattress being available, there are few to no complaints about heat sinks in this particular line of mattresses.
The biggest concern about the Contour Series deals with comfort. It truly is very specific to a certain type of sleeper and may not work well if you have a partner that prefers something different. Too firm a surface can cause pressure points and joint pain, and be very problematic to some people. It should be noted that some reviews do complain about the Elite Breeze option being much more firm that the Elite despite them being rated at the same firmness level. Much of this may be due to how the heavier densities of foam taking longer to adjust to your weight and height.
The more firm options may also not be the best picks for lighter bodies and less memory foam ‘sink’ will occur. Since the denser foams do take more time to adjust to you each night, and is less responsive to light weights, it may not be the preference of some people.
As with the Cloud line, cost versus quality is also something to consider as well. Although the TEMPUR foams used within the Contour mattresses are of decent to high quality, increases in technology have allowed other companies to offer similar products for fractions of the cost.
TEMPUR Cloud vs Contour Series Comparison Table
|Comfort Level: Softest to Medium-Soft||Comfort Level: Extra-Firm to Medium-Firm|
|Density of Comfort Layer: 4.1lb/cu.ft||Density of Comfort Layer: 7.1lb/cu.ft|
|Cooling Options: yes||Cooling Options: yes|
|Sleep Position: side-sleepers||Sleep Position: back and stomach|
|Warranty: 10 years limited||Warranty: 10 years limited|
Your Best Choice Explained
What this truly comes down to is the difference between a soft or firm mattress surface based upon not only your preferences, but also the many variables surrounding your body weight, type, and sleeping position. As a stomach sleeper, my personal pick is the TEMPUR-Contour Series since a firm mattress provides me with the best sleep possible. Softer mattresses allow my hips to sink since this is where much of the body’s weight is centered, and I’ll wake with an aching lower back due to it. In my case, the firmer the better, so the Supreme is my favorite, but for back or stomach sleepers who also roll to their side a bit, or use a body pillow- the Elite, or Rhapsody Luxe might be a decent alternative.
Side sleepers should focus on the Cloud Series to keep their spinal aligned and supported through the night. If you are a hot sleeper or bothered by possible heat retention, then consider the TEMPUR-Breeze options.