Bear Mattress Review – Made For Athletes?

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If you’re an athlete, there is nothing better than getting a good night of sleep. Once you’ve come home after a long race or a day in the gym, it’s time to let your muscles recover.

If exercise is a regular part of your routine, the Bear mattress could be great for you. The Bear mattress’s cover is woven with Celliant, which is designed to improve your blood flow and keep you sleeping cool. Even if you aren’t an athlete, you may appreciate these benefits.

Having reviewed the Bear mattress before, I was very excited to try out their updated mattress. Will the Bear give you the rest and recovery you need? Read on for my full review.

$125 Off

The Bear mattress is a memory foam mattress that sleeps cool and is quite comfortable.  You can get $125 off the Bear mattress by clicking the link below and using code CLARITY125 at checkout.

 

You Might Want To Pick The Bear If …

  • You are a back sleeper. If you sleep primarily on your back, the Bear mattress should be a great choice. The Bear allows your hips to sink in just the right amount, while the mattress offers good overall support. Even if you are a heavier back sleeper, the Bear should work for you.
  • You are a light- or medium-weight side sleeper. As long as you are not too heavy, the Bear should relieve pressure on your shoulders and hips. The top memory foam layer is very soft, so you should sink in and feel that pressure melt away.
  • You are a hot sleeper but want a memory foam mattress. One of the major drawbacks of memory foam is that it can trap heat and make you sleep hot. However, the Bear infuses its memory foam with graphite and gel, which helps with dissipating heat. The Celliant cover also dissipates heat. All in all, you shouldn’t be sleeping hot.
  • You like memory foam but worry about getting stuck. While the Bear’s memory foam is quite soft, you shouldn’t be getting stuck in this mattress. The transition layer is responsive and keeps you from sinking too far into the mattress. You should be able to move around quite easily.
  • You are an athlete. The Bear is designed to help athletes recover more quickly. The Celliant cover could help promote healthy blood flow and cool you while you sleep.

A mattress is opened to show the construction.

You Might Not Want To Pick The Bear If …

  • You are a heavier side sleeper. If you are a larger person and sleep on your side, the Bear might not be the best match for you. You could press through the top layer and into the support layer. When this happens, you could feel some pressure on your shoulders and hips.
  • You are a stomach sleeper. If you sleep primarily on your stomach, the Bear might not work for you. It might be too soft and could allow your hips to sink in too far. Stomach sleepers of any size should look for a more supportive mattress.
  • You want a very soft or very firm mattress. If you prefer a mattress on either end of the firmness spectrum, the Bear is not a great choice. It is about average in terms of firmness.

A man presses into the top of a mattress.

Construction Overview

  • The mattress is 10” tall.
  • The cover is soft and woven with a Celliant fabric.
  • The first layer is a soft memory foam infused with graphite and gel.
  • Next, you have a transitional layer. It has some bounce to it and is firmer than the top layer.
  • Then you have a standard base polyfoam layer.
  • The foams are CertiPUR-US® certified. This means they are more eco-friendly than conventional materials.

A man sleeps on his side.

Construction Takeaways

  • The Celliant in the cover has been shown to offer some health benefits. It could help improve blood circulation and help athletes recover more quickly.
  • The cover and graphite- and gel-infused memory foam are designed to help dissipate heat. This memory foam shouldn’t trap heat the way memory foam is known to do.
  • The memory foam is soft and thick. This means it should relieve pressure when you are side sleeping.
  • The combination of the soft top layer and bouncier second layer gives the mattress a balanced foam feel. You sink in a bit, but you shouldn’t feel stuck.
  • The mattress should have a nice balance of comfort and support. The top memory foam layers are soft and offer nice pressure relief. The base layer offers great overall support.

How Does The Bear Compare To The Casper?

If you are looking at all-foam mattresses, you have probably come across the Casper mattress. Like the Bear, it is a very popular mattress with a lot to offer. So how do they compare?

First off, the mattresses feature a similar, all-foam construction. That said, the Casper has one extra layer than the Bear. This layer is a transition layer with Zoned Support.

The Zoned Support makes it so the Casper mattress feels firmer toward the center of the mattress. When you lie on your back and stomach, the mattress feels firmer. When you lie on your side, the mattress feels softer.

The Bear has one firmness across the mattress, close to a 6.5/10. While the Casper will feel different depending on your sleeping position, it feels close to a 6/10. Overall, the mattresses have a similar firmness level.

While both mattresses have a somewhat balanced foam feel, the Bear has more of a memory foam feel on top. While the Casper does include memory foam, it is further down in the mattress.

$125 Off

The Bear mattress is a memory foam mattress that sleeps cool and is quite comfortable.  You can get $125 off the Bear mattress by clicking the link below and using code CLARITY125 at checkout.

Firmness And Feel

I thought the Bear mattress was close to a 6.5/10, or about average in terms of firmness. The top layer of memory foam is very soft, but you press in and feel some more firmness from the transition layer and support layer.

Bear Mattress

I will note that larger people might have a different experience on the Bear mattress. They could press through the soft top layer and hit those firmer layers beneath. Especially if you are a larger side sleeper, you could feel some pressure on your shoulders and hips.

Here is how I felt in different sleeping positions:

  • Lying on my back, I feel nice overall support. My hips sink in but not too far. In addition, the top layer conforms to the curves of my body. Back sleepers of most weights should like the Bear.
  • Moving to my side, I am feeling little pressure on my shoulders and hips. I press into that top memory foam layer and feel the pressure melt away. Again, if you are larger, you could sink in further and feel less pressure relief than I did.
  • When I am stomach sleeping, the mattress gives me a decent amount of support, but I could use a bit more. Medium and heavyweight stomach sleepers will want to find something more supportive.

The Bear mattress has a bit of that quicksandy memory foam feel on top. However, the transition layer keeps you from getting stuck. Overall, the mattress has a balanced foam feel. It has a soft, slow-moving top layer, but you shouldn’t have trouble moving around.

 

Motion Transfer

If you sleep with a partner, it is always important to think about how your mattress handles motion transfer. When you lie down on one side of the mattress and your partner moves around on the other side, will you feel this movement?

To test out the motion transfer on the Bear, I first placed a glass of water on the mattress. When I pressed into the other areas of the mattress, I saw little disturbance. Also, I laid down and asked Marten to move around on the other side of the mattress. I barely felt his movements.

All in all, the Bear should be a good option for couples.

 

Edge Support

Whether you sleep with a partner or just want to use every inch of your mattress, you should consider edge support. When sitting or lying down near the edge of your mattress, will you feel secure or more like you are going to roll off?

While I’m sitting down near the edge of the Bear, the mattress collapses quite a bit. There is no edge support system in the Bear, so this isn’t very surprising. Still, when I lie down near the edge, I don’t really feel like I am going to roll off.

In the end, the Bear features decent edge support, but it is not the best.

A man sits on the edge of a mattress.

Marten’s Take

Marten is a staff writer for us. He has a much different body type than me: He is 6’7″ and weighs about 230 lb; I am 5’9″ and 160 lb. Here is what he thought about the mattress:

Joe said it was a 6.5/10, and I thought it was closer to a 7 or 7.5/10. The reason I feel this way is because I am a larger person. Your weight definitely affects the firmness of your mattress. With the Bear, you have a soft comfort layer and then a support layer beneath that. So when I lie on my side, I press through the comfort layer and feel the firmer support layer.

Here is how I felt in different positions: 

  • Starting on my back, I feel fantastic. My hips sink in the right amount, and the foam is contouring to my body. I also feel some nice lumbar support.
  • Again, when I lie on my side, I press very far into the mattress. I feel some serious pressure on my shoulders and hips.
  • When I lie on my stomach, the mattress is too soft for me. I bow in at the hips and feel like I am out of alignment.

If you are a heavier back sleeper, this is a great choice. If you are a heavier side or stomach sleeper, I would look elsewhere.

Marten’s experience is pretty much what I expected. He found the mattress to be a good fit for back sleeping. His weight caused him to press pretty far into the mattress, so he felt some more pressure on his shoulders and hips. As expected, the Bear was not supportive enough for him.

RELATED: Most Comfortable Mattress

Unboxing The Bear Mattress

The Bear is a bed-in-a-box mattress, which means it will come compressed and be shipped straight to you.

You will want to begin by removing the rolled up Bear mattress from its box. Then, preferably with another person’s assistance, position the roll on your bed.

Carefully cut away the first layers of plastic until the still-compact mattress can be laid down flat. Then, pierce through the final layer of plastic and the Bear will expand. Simply clear away the excess plastic and allow your mattress to breathe and fully expand.

 

Bear Mattress
4.5 Reviewer
Summary
The Bear mattress talks mostly about Celliant technology, which I'm not so familiar with as a mattress reviewer, so decide the merits of that technology for yourself. However looking at just the feel and materials of the mattress, the Bear still tends to be one of my favorites. The mattress is made by a family that's been in the (local) mattress business for a few generations, so they made a product that they knew customers wanted in terms of feel and comfort. Overall I had a good experience with the Bear mattress and do recommend it.
Comfort4.5
Support4.5
Value (Price)4.4
Doesn't Sleep Hot4.5
Motion Transfer4.2
Edge Support4
Materials/Durability4.6
Company Reputation4.6
Return Policy/Warranty4.6
Overall Sleep Experience4.6

What Makes This Mattress Stand Out?

  • It features Celliant, which could help athletes recover more quickly. (I recommend doing your own research to determine if you think this feature is worth it to you.)
  • The mattress offers a balance of comfort and support and could be a good match for back sleepers.
  • The Bear features soft memory foam on top, which is great for relieving pressure.
  • The memory foam contains gel and graphite, so it shouldn’t trap heat.
  • The mattress features a balanced foam feel, so you get the feeling of slow-moving foam without getting stuck.

Overall

In the end, the Bear is a great match for back sleepers, hot sleepers, and light- and medium-weight side sleepers. Heavier side sleepers and most stomach sleepers might want to look elsewhere.

The Bear comes with a 100-night sleep trial, 10-year warranty, and free shipping and returns. Financing is available. The maker of the Bear mattress also offers a Bear Hybrid mattress and many accessories.

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Joe Auer

Joe Auer is the editor of Mattress Clarity. He mainly focuses on mattress reviews and oversees the content across the site.

He likes things simple and take a straightforward, objective approach to his reviews. Joe has personally tested nearly 250 mattresses and always recommends people do their research before buying a new bed. He has been testing mattresses for over 5 years now, so he knows a thing or two when it comes to mattress selection. He has been cited as an authority in the industry by a number of large publications.

Joe has an undergraduate degree from Wake Forest University and an MBA from Columbia University.

27 thoughts on “Bear Mattress Review – Made For Athletes?”

  1. Hi Joe, I am a back sleeper, with itinerant back pain. I’m now using a Serta Canterbury that I bought in 2002, and it still looks great. I like to have my bed high off the floor so my bed-frame is boosted up by six inches and then with a box frame, giving me a height of 18 inches. I am thinking about getting a Bear mattress. Is the Bear compatible with a box frame? I think I read somewhere it was not, but the solution was to use ¼ inch plywood on top of the frame for additional support. Do you have any insight to this? The box frame is still in good condition, and I don’t want to trash it. If the Bear won’t work with it, is there one that will from Memory Foam-Latex-Hybrid types?

  2. Hi! On a search for a new mattress, me and my husband both have back problems i wake up in pain in the middle of the night. We are both 180lbs looking for a mattress thats cool and firm but also soft with good edge support for when the kid jumps in too. My husbands a back sleeper i usually start on my side and wake on my back any suggestions?? Theirs so many to choose from im lost

  3. The most important feature for me is firmness. What would you suggest for the most firm mattress out there. Also, what is the procedure for returning the mattress if you don’t like it.

    • You could check out the Helix, where you get to select exactly how firm you want your mattress to be. Returns are usually pretty simple but they vary depending the retailer in question.

  4. Hi Joe,

    I am debating whether to go with a Bear mattress, Nolah, or something latex (possibly Plush Bed).

    About me:
    I have a physical condition that makes it harder for me to reposition on the mattress.

    I am a side sleeper and have wide shoulders and presently experience shoulder pain many mornings.

    I also tend to sleep hot.

    Bear appeals to me due to the Celiant and supposed “cool sleeping”.

    Latex appeals to me because of the fact that I shouldn’t sink in and feel stuck. Latex also is represented to sleep cooler.

    Nolah appeals for many of the reasons that latex does.

    Which way should I lean?

    Thanks!
    Paul

  5. Hi,

    Thanks for your reviews. I have found them quite helpful. I am trying to decide between the Bear or the GhostBed. I have some lower back issues. Do you think one is better than the other for helping with back pain?

  6. Thanks for your great reviews! We bought a king Bear mattress and want to put it on our old box springs with plywood underneath for support. Do you have any recommendations for the thickness, etc.
    Thanks!

  7. Love your site!! Thank you for all the hard work!!
    I just bought a Bear mattress thanks to your site and used your coupon code so saved $50

    Keep up the good fight because mattress buying is one of the most confusing things for the public.

    Two Thumbs up on your site

  8. This sounds perfect! Love that it comes right to your door & I love the honesty of your review, that’s so important!

  9. Joe,

    I started looking for a new mattress a couple of days ago and to my dismay found there are at least 100 online mattress manufacturers. When I originally started looking back a year ago I found between 40 or 50. Anyway, it is crazy. My question to you is this. In your opinion is there a mattress or two or three that no matter the materials used, or price as an issue, that you believe is the best all around? I am overwhelmed by the choices, which is a good thing I guess because all of that competition is not only driving the price of a quality mattress way down but also pushing manufacturers to create new designs and technologies. That’s one of the great things about capitalism. I could spend the next 6 months reading reviews and still not be sure what to choose. If you have any ideas I would love to hear them because I believe your reviews are among the best written and most complete online. Thanks for all your efforts in helping consumers like myself to make an informed choice of one of the most important items we ever invest in. A house and automobile are 1 and 2 but the mattress is right there with both. Thanks!

  10. Hi Joe/Folks, (Joe, thanks for the review and site)

    What would be the best way to “configure” the Bear Mattress – here is what I have done:

    1. Covered with an old style mattress pad, a fitted sheet and a flat sheet (these are mostly inexpensive synthetic material).

    2. Beneath the mattress, I had slats spaced about 4″ apart – I added 3″ slats in those gaps.

    3. In addition, I placed an inexpensive 1.5″ memory foam topper ON THE SLATS to protect the mattress from the slats and to provide a smooth surface for tucking in sheets.

    One concern is the degree to which I may have reduced the airflow under the mattress; the other is the degree to which I may have too much material covering the top of the mattress which may impact the beneficial effects of the graphite-gel memory foam for cooling (I do not “think” I am impacting the celliant action).

    Thanks for anyone who can provide their thoughts and comments.

    • Hi Doug! Let me ask – what is your goal with the memory foam topper under the mattress? The slats should be fine to put the mattress on directly – just reference the Bear mattress warranty to make sure they are close enough (sounds like you’re more than fine).

      Adding that memory foam layer on the bottom probably won’t have a huge impact on airflow. What will have an impact on airflow is the sheets – if you’re really concerned about cooling, I would invest in some quality breathable sheets.

  11. How does the Bear mattress compare to the Lull? It seems like they are very similar in price point, composition, and comfort. The only thing is that the Bear mattress has celiant technology which isn’t scientifically proven yet. Do you have a preference? I’m also an athlete.

    • Hi Nat – Bear stands out with the Celliant, so it makes it harder to compare if that doesn’t matter to you. Other than that, the big thing is that Bear is also all memory foam, while Lull has a latex-like layer under the memory foam comfort layer, so Lull will “spring” back a little more quickly than Bear. In terms of quality/specs I think these two are pretty similar, it really comes down to that feel preference.

  12. I am trying to decide between the Bear Mattress and Brooklyn Bedding BME medium. Which would you recommend? Which sleeps cooler? Thanks!

    • Both good options. As for sleeping cool, I didn’t really have a problem with either one. Maybe slight edge to BME. The main difference would be the BME is gonna give you a bouncier feel.

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