- Value: 19/20
- Functionality: 18/20
- Ease of Setup: 17/20
- Aesthetics: 17/20
- Pain-Relief: 18/20
- TOTAL: 89/100
If you, like me, are a side sleeper, you know what it’s like to wake up after a night's sleep with achy shoulders and hips that feel suspiciously like you passed out on a block of concrete. For so long, I just thought that’s how life would be, whether I was snoozing on a friend’s blow up mattress or a hotel bed that was as hard as a rock.
That is, until I got the chance to test out the Casper Nova Hybrid, which is specifically designed for side sleepers like me. Those of us who prefer to sleep on our left or right sides need a little more cushioning to avoid waking up with all those aches and pains—but that doesn’t mean we want to give up the support that a firmer model might offer. Casper was able to figure out a happy medium between the two, resulting in this new hybrid design that features two layers of breathable foam and one layer of springs. There are also seven zones of targeted support for a happy back, including a pressure-relieving zone under the shoulders and a touch more support in the areas where your waist, lower back and hips usually fall.
That said, if you don’t necessarily enjoy a super soft, almost sink-into-it feel, this bed isn’t for you. Similarly, if you’re a stomach sleeper or a back sleeper who needs a certain level of support, consider Casper’s other models. Seriously, the Nova is the definition of plush and it’s encased in a four-way stretch fabric that only emphasizes that soft-to-the-touch feel.
I’m not going to lie, after the first night’s sleep on the Nova Hybrid, I was ready to send it back. After getting the bed out of the box, onto my bed frame and out of its plastic shrink wrap, it popped up to its full size in an instant. I immediately made my bed and started counting down the hours until I could cozy up. But I was shocked to find that I’d replaced my original mattress with an actual marshmallow. My new Casper mattress was so soft, that I had to exert a ton of effort to readjust or flip over since it felt like I was sinking so deep into the cushy foam.
However, I decided to stick to Casper’s suggestion to give the mattress up to three weeks to reach its full potential. And I have to say, this baby firmed up rather nicely. Now that I’m two months into sleeping on the Nova Hybrid, it has morphed into having more of a plush cradling sensation that hasn’t left me with an ounce of back pain nor any achiness in my shoulders or hips.
Casper also notes on their site that “should your Casper mattress have a scent, it will dissipate in a few hours in a well-ventilated room.” According to the brand, this smell is usually attributed to the water-based adhesive, which is chemical-free; further, all Casper models are made without formaldehyde, ozone depleters, mercury, lead and other heavy metals. Still, I didn’t realize how potent the fragrance of my new mattress would be—and I don’t consider myself to be someone who is super sensitive to scents. So, I’d highly recommend anyone who buys this mattress to let it air out for at least a night or two before your first sleep. Perhaps in a room with lots of windows. For me, the lingering smells fully dissipated after two days, but I feel like that time would’ve been shortened if I hadn’t been so quick to throw my sheets on it out of the box.
Speaking of unboxing, the queen size of this mattress weighs around 92 pounds in the box (though it’s closer to 89 when it’s rolled flat), meaning it’s a little too heavy to set up on your own. In fact, I probably wouldn’t have been able to unbox my Casper without a little help—so don’t throw out your back trying to set it up solo just to prove to yourself that you’re a strong, independent woman. Ahem.
FYI, Casper’s offering a sale on this mattress through December 24. So, if you want to give yourself the gift of a good night’s sleep this year…you know what to do.