iGel Mattress review: is the iGel's heat-wicking sleep technology all it's cracked up to be? | The Sun
IN a world full of convenient, permanently on-sale box-in-a-bed companies, the iGel mattress is a bit of an enigma: it's only available from one fairly old-school retailer, and its price tag can reach well over £2,000.
However, it claims to use Nobel Prize winning technology to keep you cool at night, so we thought we'd do an iGel Mattress review to see if it's worth the stratospheric price tag.
Bensons for Beds, the exclusive stockist of the iGel mattress, says that the iGel the future of mattresses, and makes some pretty big claims regarding its performance.
Using the Goldilocks-esque tagline "not too hot, not too cold, just right", it says that the mattress is seven times better at transferring heat than standard memory foam, and that its pressure relieving iGel crystals help to relieve aches and pains.
However, the entry-level 1600i model I tested costs a whopping £1099.99, and if you go for the bells-and-whistles 4400i Plush Top version, you'll have to find a smidge under £2,000 down the sofa. That means that to be classed as good value for money, the iGel Mattress has to walk the walk.
- iGel Advance 1600i Mattress, £1,099.99 from Bensons for Beds – buy here
Overall rating: 4/5
- Amazing at temperature regulation, meaning no waking up sweaty (although summer will be the real test)
- Eases pressure on aching joints
- 10-year guarantee
- Deliverers will put the mattress in a room of your choice
- No weird smell on opening
- No waiting for it to expand — you can hop right on
- Expensive, especially when compared with modern bed-in-a-box brands (though you can pay on interest-free finance)
- Doesn't come rolled up, which could make delivery a bit of a faff
- Even the "medium" firmness is quite firm
- Heavy and big — you will likely require deep fitted sheets
iGel mattress review: first impressions
If you're familiar with our work at Sun Selects, you'll know that we've reviewed a huge array of so-called "bed in a box" brands, from Simba to Emma and Brook and Wilde.
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You might be familiar with the concept; your mattress arrives very tightly rolled up inside a surprisingly compact package, and while the delivery people might put it in a room of your choice, you're left to unpackage it and heave it onto the bed yourself.
The iGel is not that; instead, things are done the old fashioned way. Two gentlemen turned up in a van, asked which room I'd like the mattress to be put in, huffed and puffed their way up my narrow staircase, and put it on the bed I specified.
Bed in a Box brands often market themselves as being the convenient solution, but I can't think of anything more easy than having the mattress unpackaged and put on the bed for you.
And because it's not rolled up during delivery, you don't even have to wait for the mattress to expand to its full size like you do with bed in a box brands — you can theoretically put your sheets on and go to bed as soon as it arrives.
It's also fairly common to get a bit of a weird smell in the room once you've unpackaged a rolled up mattress — there's none of that with the iGel.
I was quite taken aback by the size of the mattress. It's a big old slab, at 26cm thick, and it's very heavy to move around (I'm certainly glad the delivery men took it up the stairs). However, Bensons for Beds says that you don't need to turn it like you do with other mattresses, so it's unlikely you'll have to pick it up very often.
The thickness does mean that you'll probably require deep-fitted sheets, though, or else you'll be at risk of the corners pinging off during the night.
I'll also say that, although it's a relatively useless feature as it'll be covered with sheets and duvets, it's also a very nice mattress to look at, with an unusual panelled design.
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iGel Mattress review: performance
The iGel's main selling point is its temperature control technology, which claims to make it seven times more effective at keeping you cool at night than the average mattress.
Because we've tested this mattress out over the course of an unusually cold winter, it's hard for us to say quite how true this claim is.
Summer will be the real test — especially if it's anything like last year, with its unbearable heatwaves — and we'll be sure to update this review once the mercury has risen a bit.
Having said that, I've not once felt uncomfortably hot during the night since I've been using this mattress, which was a semi-regular occurrence before. Other users have compared the feel of the mattress to "the cool side of the pillow", and I can definitely understand what they mean.
In terms of comfort, I think the main thing to flag is that while the 1600i is marketed as coming with a "Medium" firmness, I found it to be a little firmer than that. I wouldn't quite say it's capital-f Firm, but I think "medium-firm" might be a more apt description.
The 1600i is also the only iGel mattress that doesn't allow you to choose the firmness. If you're looking for a soft feel, then you might want to go for the 3000i or 4400i, but they're on the more expensive end of the already pricey iGel range.
However, thanks to the fact that the mattress is made using 1600 individually cased springs (hence the name), it does feel very supportive, and there's special technology included to make sure that you and your partner don't roll towards each other in the night.
How to clean iGel mattresses
You can clean the iGel mattress the same way as most other mattresses; use the upholstery attachment on your vacuum cleaner to remove any dust, and if you have a stain that needs removing, then use cold water.
It's always worth checking the care instructions for your specific iGel mattress for specific information.
Are iGel mattresses memory foam?
No. The iGel mattress is made with thousands of pocket springs for support, rather than using memory foam.
If you're a memory foam loyalist, check out our roundup of the best memory foam mattresses.
The verdict: is the iGel mattress any good?
In short, yes — the iGel 1600i mattress seems to come good on its promise to effectively keep you at the perfect temperature while sleeping, and it's comfortable and supportive to boot.
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Having said that, it's a little on the firmer side for a mattress marketed as "medium", and it's certainly not cheap.
The real test of its temperature-regulating abilities will come in summer when the heat rises — we'll be sure to update this review then.
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