Bear Mattress Review

Looking for an innovative mattress that features non-invasive sleep tech? The Bear mattress is extra cooling, extra supportive, and extra worth it for the price you pay---and it comes with a standard 100-day sleep trial, too.

By Maria Ramos
Last Updated: September 26, 2018

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We’ve reviewed over a dozen mattresses here at Good Night’s Rest. The Bear mattress is the first one we’ve come across marketed specifically for sleepers with an active lifestyle!

Their commitment to supporting physical activity doesn’t stop there, either. Similar to Leesa, they also put a premium on giving back to the community.

woman lying on her stomach on bear mattress on the floor

A portion of their profits are sent to a charity called Good Sports. The contributions go toward helping children in every US state have more access to sports apparel, equipment and footwear.

On top of this, every Bear mattress is proudly made in the USA. Materials are sourced locally, and manufacturing is split between that states of South Carolina and Georgia.

We love a mattress-in-a-box company with a conscience. We’d love it more if their mattress were amazing, too! Is it, though? Read on and join us below as we find out all about the Bear Mattress.

Bear Mattress Specifics

The flagship Bear mattress is made to address three elements of healthy sleep: comfort, cooling, and recovery. The latter is expressed in measure to provide maximum pressure relief. This ideally translates to better muscle recuperation and more restorative rest.

As an all-foam design, it focuses on using proprietary materials to set it apart from the competition.

What’s in a Bear Mattress?

The 10-inch Bear mattress is made of four layers of CertiPUR-US approved foam; including proprietary memory foam and polyfoam blends. This is all put together using water-based bonding, wrapped in a fire retardant sock, then encased in a cover using Celliant® fibers.

We’ll discuss the mattress cover in a bit. Right now, let’s take a look at the foam layers:

  • 1.5 inches of graphite-gel memory foam. We’re familiar with gel memory foam, but graphite-gel is new to us. The open cell responsive top foam does the double duty of temperature regulation and pressure relief. Deep compression support is provided as well, aiding in spinal alignment, which contributes to recovery after physical activity. Read more about graphite-gel memory foam here.
  • 1 inch of responsive poly-based foam. We all know memory foam is great for reducing motion transfer and providing contour. A good mattress design makes sure that these benefits don’t get overshadowed by excess sinkage or insufficient bounce, though—which is where the middle layers of the Bear mattress come in.
  • Another 1 inch of responsive poly-based foam. Why two consecutive layers of the same kind of foam? Simple: The upper one is more for sleeper comfort, while the lower one is more to support the mattress design. Both work in tandem to ensure good weight distribution and to act as a transition from the soft memory foam to the firm high density support polyfoam.
  • 6.5 inches of high density support polyfoam. Typical of all foam mattresses, the base layer is for foundational support and an extra measure of durability for the overall design.

The most unique thing about the Bear mattress isn’t the graphite-gel memory foam layer. It’s actually the soft and thin mattress cover, which is breathable and made of Celliant® fibers. This is the real top layer of the mattress, as it contributes significantly to the initial feel and long term benefits of using the Bear mattress.

Note that the mattress cover is non-removable and should be subject to spot cleaning only.

bear mattress interior

What Are Celliant® Fibers?

These fibers are made of a unique combination of over a dozen ingredients: thermo-reactive minerals, which include materials like silicone dioxide and aluminum oxide; other proprietary elements; and polyester.

Because Celliant® technology has been observed and tested several U.S. based clinical studies, Celliant® fibers and products including them are actually classified as a medical devices by the FDA. According to the Federal Food, Drug and Cosmetic Act , they may also be called general wellness products.

Celliant® is a patented, non-invasive technology. As used Bear the mattress cover, it is said to convert heat emanating from the sleeping human body into infrared light. This infrared light is then reflected back to the sleeper, reaching tissue and muscles within. This stimulates blood circulation and oxygenation throughout the body.

Although you won’t necessarily notice Celliant® technology working this way, you may immediately notice the other benefit of the heat conversion: superior cooling. You might also feel a gradual increase in comfort and well-being the longer you use the Bear mattress.

Read more about Celliant technology here.

Can You Customize the Bear Mattress?

No customization here, unless you include picking out your mattress size of choice.

In which case, the Bear mattress is available in six standard US mattress dimensions: twin, twin XL, full, queen, king and California king. The weight of the Bear mattress is average for foam mattress models. For instance: the queen size Bear mattress is an even 70 pounds, comparable to the 71-pound Casper queen size mattress.

The Bear mattress is part of the universal comfort trend in mattress-in-a-box models, which means that they offer a singular comfort level meant to be “perfect” for everyone.

What to Consider Before Choosing the Bear Mattress

Why choose the Bear mattress over others? Let’s zoom in on what makes it unique: the mattress cover and graphite-gel memory foam top. This combination is ideal if you sleep hot or have an active lifestyle, or simply prefer a contouring feel with a little bit of hug.

There’s also the fact that the company gives back and donates to charity—beyond the typical business model of processing mattress returns for either donation or recycling. What’s not to like?

Celliant® technology notwithstanding, the Bear mattress is still just a foam mattress. Looking for a more plush and luxurious option, but want to take advantage of what makes the Bear mattress special? you may find the Bear hybrid foam and spring mattress more to your liking.

At 14.5 inches thick, the latter may also be a better choice for heavier people, or older or not physically fit sleepers that may have trouble getting out of bed.

What Can Be Used with the Bear Mattress?

Like most foam mattresses, the Bear mattress works best when laid on a solid, flat surface. Of course, Bear recommends their own products: the Bear foundation paired with the Bear bed frame.

You can also use any bed base: platform bed, box foundation, bed frame, etc. Even the floor is an acceptable option! The only thing Bear specifically warns against using is a traditional box spring, as these coil-inclusive bases aren’t meant to be used with foam mattresses.

How Do You Set Up the Bear Mattress?

Like most other mattresses you can order online, you can expect your Bear mattress to arrive within a few days after ordering. It will be packed tightly, vacuum sealed and compressed in a box.

You can do setup by yourself, but larger mattress sizes tend to be so heavy that it would really just be faster to ask for someone to help you out.

Carry the box to the intended bedroom, and then start unpacking the product. It’s as simple as taking the plastic wrapped and rolled up mattress out of container and laying it on your bed base. From there, carefully cut away the outer plastic. This should allow the Bear mattress to start expanding.

As the product decompresses slowly, you can make the slight adjustments needed to align the mattress with your bed base. You don’t want to leave this part for after the Bear mattress has completely expanded, as it will be harder to move around.

Cut the inner and final layer of plastic packaging. The easiest way to do this would be to go around the bed perimeter while carefully cutting it away. Remove the plastic and wait for full expansion. This shouldn’t take more than a minute or two.

Because all the foams are CertiPUR-US approved and held together by a water-based solution, there really shouldn’t be a strong new mattress smell.

Should you notice a slight odor, though, you can air out the mattress for a few hours by leaving the door and one or more windows open in the room. Just make sure that you’re not letting in too much moisture from outside, and that you’ve cleared all the packaging material away—these might be what’s giving off the smell.

What’s the Weight Capacity of the Bear Mattress?

The weight capacity of the Bear Mattress is 350 pounds per side.

This is a great weight capacity, definitely way above industry standard, though not the highest we’ve seen. To compare: The Endy mattress and two of three Eight smart mattress models all have a weight limit of 250 pounds per side. GhostBed mattress models sit at the other end of the spectrum with a limit of 375 pounds per side.

An interesting note: We love Bear’s apparent transparency and attention to detail. Their official website provided all the information we wanted to know about the mattress materials, design and technologies used—in an efficient and effective manner.

Having said that, it’s interesting to us that we had to ask Bear’s customer support for the mattress weight capacity! We couldn’t find it listed anywhere, although when we did ask, the info was provided immediately.

bear mattress on white background

How Does the Bear Mattress Feel?

Here and there, we found comments from verified buyers complaining that it was “too soft” or “too firm”—although the majority of feedback was overwhelmingly positive. 

The Bear mattress suffers from the typical feedback that any universal comfort design gets: a small smattering of what we like to call “Goldilocks” comments. 😄 Of course, it’s worth noting here that these comments exist because mattress comfort levels are subjective measurements.

There are a few negative comments that we’d like to point out, though. Some complained that the mattress still sleeps hot despite being marketed as a cooling mattress.

While we don’t know the specifics of the situation, we’d just like to note that if you really sleep hot, you should consider going for a hybrid mattress instead of an all-foam model. Also, complaints like this are what the sleep trial is there for. Take advantage of it, as take the trial period into account when buying a mattress online.

Some complained that the mattress they received was not a standard size, but smaller! This may be a manufacturing defect, or possibly a case of the mattress staying in its compressed state for too long. Should this happen to you, do contact Bear customer support as soon as you notice it.

What to Expect When Purchasing a Bear Mattress

The Bear mattress is meant for those with an active lifestyle, but it really can be used by anyone. Don’t expect to be pushed to become more active when you start using a Bear mattress, though! At most, you may feel a little bit better: a little cooler, a little more well rested, a little more supported when you sleep.

When it comes to the company itself, there’s a similar “no expectations” vibe. They’re new, after all. And while we appreciate the transparency and the positive energy that their brand seems to thrive in, we know better than to be blinded by the hype. However, we do like that they seem to be approachable and knowledgeable about their product.

How Is Bear’s Customer Support?

Bear offers a telephone hotline, an online contact form, and live chat as venues of customer support. They also have a well put together, though not truly extensive, FAQ section. On top of this, they’re active on their social media accounts: Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and more.

Remember that slight hiccup in our research when we were looking for the weight capacity of the Bear mattress? When we contacted Bear through their online form, they responded within minutes. We tried live chat, and the response was similarly quick and thorough.

We also love that their customer service isn’t pushy, and doesn’t spam upsells.

Does Bear Mattress Offer a Sleep Trial, Return Policy and Warranty?

Every Bear mattress purchase comes with an industry standard 100-night sleep trial, return and full refund policy, as well as a 10-year limited warranty.

If you’ve seen one sleep trial and return policy, you’ll know what this one entails. Same with the limited warranty. However, note that you can’t initiate a mattress return until you pass the “adjustment period” of 30 days. This is similar to Layla‘s 14-day caveat, but twice as long.

Mattress returns are as expected: You contact customer support, they arrange for a mattress pickup that will result in either donating or recycling, and then a full refund is processed once the return is verified. You don’t pay for anything.

woman lying on her back with legs up on bear mattress on the floor

How Much Does the Bear Mattress Cost?

As of this writing, the price points of the Bear mattress on their official website and on Amazon are the same. The queen size Bear mattress is currently listed at $840.

Final Words on the Bear Mattress

We’re suckers for innovation, and the Bear mattress completely captivated us with their Celliant® technology-using cover! The use of the graphite-gel memory foam is also intriguing. However, we are managing expectations because the Bear mattress is, after all, a foam mattress—if a well-designed one.

All the boxes are ticked off for a possible recommendation, though: There’s a sleep trial, the company is transparent about product details, the customer support is responsive, and a thorough check of customer feedback doesn’t reveal any alarming trends. The cost is more than worth it if you think of all these little things.

The bottom line: If you’re in the market for a cooling mattress at a fair price, and don’t want to end up with a starter bed, try the Bear mattress. We recommend it especially for people that are physically active, heavier than average, and prefer that memory foam feel over an innerspring bounce.