We compare South Africa's mattresses that arrive at your home in a box
- New online companies are cutting out the usual frustrations with buying a mattress: especially dealing with commission-hungry salespeople, arranging delivery, and anxiety over making the right decision.
- They are selling a mattress that arrives in a box.
- South Africa is finally catching on.
- We look at some of your options.
- For more stories, go toBusiness Insider SA.
South Africa has been slow to catch onto the trend. Until now the market is biased towards the traditional model, and international mattress in a box firms have been slow to arrive. But several local companies have started producing their own iterations, and at least one international company has, in a way, launched in South Africa.
Most people spend about one third of their lives sleeping. This makes purchasing a mattress an important, yet undoubtedly mundane, decision.
Our need for sleep also makes the mattress industry a particularly lucrative one.
But for consumers, the industry is fraught with complexities, deliberate and otherwise, that make purchasing a new mattress at best a necessary evil, at worst, a particularly expensive, frustrating, and difficult experience.
It’s also a business that, until recently, relied on an outdated model of large retail floorspace, middlemen, and price-inflating commissions.
But as established markets have grown increasingly concerned about health and wellness, so too have mattress markets seen a revitalisation of sorts, in the form of scrappy mattress startups.
In just half a decade, companies like Casper, Helix, Tuft & Needle, and Saatva have effectively made sleeping surfaces cool again.
These predominantly online companies cut out four of the biggest mattress frustrations - visiting brick and mortar stores, dealing with commission-hungry salespeople, arranging delivery, and anxiety over making the right decision.
They’ve done this by pioneering, and then aggressively marketing, “beds in a box” that arrive in a container in just a few days, with extended money-back “comfort guarantees”.
Social media influencers have helped spread the excitement - many, including Kylie Jenner, have been paid to endorse these products, usually by filming themselves opening their boxed mattresses.
And it’s hard not to revel in the charm of a mattress, that was until recently a hulking sandwich of pocket coils, cooling gels, and bamboo fibres lugged into homes by a crew of sweaty delivery men, unfurling quietly and without aid on a bed frame.
These mattress startups have been cashing in, too. Casper recently raised another $1 billion in funding, which values the company at more than $15 billion.
Several local companies have started producing their own version, and at least one international company has, in a way, launched in South Africa.
Here’s how they stack up.
Sloom is a South African mattress in a box brand that started operations in 2016. According to their website, their goal was to simplify the mattress buying experience and sell easily shippable mattresses direct to the public.
They also claim to be South Africa’s first “comfort-adjustable mattress-in-a-box”. Their model allows users to adjust the layers of the mattress to select comfort level.
Sloom currently only offers one mattress for sale on their website, called the Original. It’s an all foam mattress with adjustable layers.
According to the website, “If you’re not sure what mattress level works best for you… you can change it at the comfort of your own home.” It arrives in a box measuring 190cm x 30cm x 30cm.
Single - R5,000
3/4 - R6,000
Double - R7,000
Double Extra Length - R7,700
Queen - R8,000
Queen Extra Length - R8,800
King - R9,000
King Extra Length - R9,900
150kg per person
100 night sleep trial, claimable between day 60 and 100. Free pickup and refund.
Free delivery in two to five days.
Simba is a mattress company based in the United Kingdom, and available locally via online retailers.
The parent company started selling traditional mattresses in 1979, and has since developed a foam pocket spring mattress that is available to order online and ships in a box.
It has a limited presence in South Africa, and is selling their mattresses through Takealot.
Simba sells just one type of mattress, called The Simba Mattress. It has “A unique combination of 1,900 conical pocket springs and responsive memory foam.” It arrives in a box measuring 105cm x 105cm x 50cm.
Single - R5499
Double - R7299
Queen - R7999
114kg per person.
None advertised locally. But according to Simba's international terms and conditions on their local website, if you are not entirely happy with your mattress or change your mind within 100 days of receiving a Simba mattress, “they will collect it at no extra cost and give you a full refund”.
Free delivery within two days, via Takealot.
Genie is a South African business that has developed their version of a mattress in a box. The company manufactures a range of complimentary sleep products, including portable bed bases and pillows, that they sell through traditional retailers.
Genie sells just one type of mattress, called The Genie. According to the website, it’s “a natural latex, high density foam mattress with individually pocketed springs”. It arrives in a box measuring 105cm x 47cm x 47cm.
Genie follows a more traditional approach to mattress sales that allows for markups on its bed in a box product, thus allowing middlemen to markup the price. According to the Genie website, these are the recommended retail prices:
Single - R5549
Double - R7565
Queen - R8275
Queen Extra Length - R8875
King - R9785
King Extra Length - R10750
200kg per person.
100 night trial “risk free”. According to the website, if you aren’t happy with your Genie within the 100 nights, they will come and pick it up again.
Dependent on individual resellers
Meelu is a South African mattress in a box company founded in 2017. The owners established the business after being inspired by the success of similar products abroad.
They worked to develop a foam mattress that can be packed into a box, sold and delivered, without the need for a middleman.
Meelu only sells the Meelu Mattress. They claim the mattress is “The perfect combination of comfort and support.” It has four foam layers and a zip-and-wash removable cover. The biggest option arrives in a box measuring 190cm x 30cm x 30 cm.
Single - R5499
Single Extra Length - R5999
Double - R6499
Double Extra Length - R6999
Queen - R7299
Queen Extra Length - R7999
King - R8499
King Extra Length - R8999
100 day comfort guarantee. According to the website, should you not be entirely satisfied with your purchase you may return your mattress to them within 100 days from date of delivery.
Free delivery in three to five working days.
My Beddie is a local mattress in a box company founded in 2017. Their focus is on providing a local convenient mattress solution that’s comfortable and affordable.
They operate on a hybrid model in that they sell the mattresses through three specific online retailers, and via their own website.
My Beddie offers a single mattress option called the myBeddie Plush. It has individual pocket springs for weight distribution, and a layer of “massage foam”. The biggest option arrives in a box measuring 184cm x 30cm x 30cm.
Single - R1999
Double - R2999
Queen - R3399
King - R3999
120kg per person
100 night sleep trial available, at a cost. According to the website, you can try their 100 night sleep trial and return the mattress for a full refund if you aren’t completely happy, provided you paid for this at checkout. The sleep trial add-on costs between R450 for a single mattress, up to R1000 for the king-size mattress.
Minimum delivery fee of R200.
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