Bedding Terms Glossary

Adjustable Bed – A bed that can achieve different positions through motion
Air Bed – A mattress that uses air chambers for support instead of springs, foam, or water
Allergen – Any substances that causes a histamine response (allergic reaction)
Alignment – The proper position of the spine
Anti-microbial – Term used to identify materials that are naturally or been treated to prevent or discourage the growth molds and bacteria
ASTM – American Society for Testing and Materials.  An organization devoted to the establishment of standard methods and procedures for testing materials

Ball Rebound – A test procedure used to measure the surface resilience of FPF. It involves dropping a standard steel ball of known mass from a predetermined height onto a FPF sample and measuring the percent of rebound.
Bamboo fabric – Natural rayon made from the bamboo plant, soft, breathable,  antimicrobial, and able to absorb and wick away moisture
Bed Riser – Any extension or block placed under the bed to raise it higher off the floor
Bed Frame – A frame, usually made of metal, that supports the mattress and its boxsprings or foundation
Blended Latex – Latex that combines both natural and synthetic latex milk
Body Alignment – Anatomically correct positioning of the spine, muscles, and joints
Body Impression – A minor indentation formed on the surface of the mattress resulting from comfort layers contouring to the sleeper’s body
Bonding – The combination of two (or more) components into a layered composite
Bonnell Coil – Innerspring coil which an hourglass shape
Border – The side or edge of the mattress
Border Rod – A heavy gauge wire used around the perimeter edge of a mattress
Bottoming Out – Feeling the bottom of the mattress
Boxspring –  Foundation made of wood and steel, sometimes containing springs, provides a flat surface on which the mattress rests, also acts as a spacer to get the mattress higher off the frame
Boxtop Pillowtop – A type of pillowtop that has a square edge and more thickness than a typical pillowtop

California King – Measures 72″ x 84″
Cell – Cavity remaining in the structure of polyurethane foam surrounded by the polymer skeleton
CFC – Chlorofluorocarbons which are used as auxiliary blowing agents
Closed Cell Foam  – Foam having cells with intact cell membranes thereby reducing or eliminating passageways for airflow
Coil Count – Total number of coils in an innerspring mattress
Coil Density – Number of coils that would be in an innerspring mattress with foam encasement if the foam was replaced with coils
Coil Fatigue – Used to describe an innerspring or coil softens that loses its load bearing capacity
Comfort – The absence of pressure
Comfort Life – The length of time a mattress will provide proper support and maintain comfortable sleep
Conformability – Shaping to a sleeper’s body
Continuous Coil – Innerspring construction type where  each row of coils is made from one piece of wire
Convoluted Foam – Foam that is run through special cutting equipment to produce a surface with peaks and valleys
Corner Guards – Plastic or metal cover attached to the four corners of the foundation or boxspring
Cover – Fabric surrounding the mattress

Damask – Fabric that features a design woven into a thick fabric
Density – Measurement of  weight volume usually expressed in pounds per cubic foot
Double Bed – Measures 54″ x 75″, also called a full
Dunlop Process – Process of making latex where the foam is mixed and poured into a mold where it sets while being baked, it is then sometimes sliced or cut
Durability –  Ability of a material or product to maintain its shape and usefulness
Dust Mites – Microscopic animals (related to spiders) found in bedding, carpets, and soft furnishings that feed on dead skin flakes and bacteria, their feces are a major trigger of allergies and asthma
Dust Mite Covers – Fabric cover with a dust and moisture control barrier providing an effective barrier for dust and dust mites for allergy

Egyptian Cotton – Cotton containing long staple, strong fibers
Euro Pillowtop – Extra side panel added to the top of a mattress with an additional tape edge to form a pillowtop
Eurotopsee Euro Pillowtop

Feather Bed – feathers contained within a fabric shell usually laid on top of a mattress as a topper to provide additional padding and comfort
Firmness – General and subjective term used to describe a range of mattress support levels
Foam – A common mattress component that can be used for comfort, durability and in some cases, as the support layer. There are a variety of foam technologies using different formulas, unique designs and various densities.  A lightweight cellular material resulting from the introduction of gas bubbles into a reacting polymer
Foam Encasement – Foam support around the perimeter of the mattress that provides a firm sitting edge and minimizes the feeling of roll-off when approaching the edge of the bed
Foundation – Similar to a  box spring, however, a foundation contains no springs and provides a hard, flat surface on which the mattress rests, also acts as a spacer to get the mattress higher off the frame
FR Compliant – As of 2007, all mattresses manufactured or imported in the U.S. are required to adhere to strict flammability guidelines prescribed in  16 CFR, part 1633
Full – Measures 54″ x 75″, also called a double
Futon – Cotton filled mattress, can also refer to a frame that can convert to a bed from a sofa or chair

Gauge – Measurement of the thickness of the wire used in a spring,  a lower gauge number equates to a heavier wire, while a higher gauge is thinner, common innerspring gauges range from 13 to 15½

Hand – Feel of the fabric surface as it is rubbed lightly
Helical Wire – Spiral shaped wire that is used to connect coils in a non-pocketed innerspring unit
Hevea brasiliensis – Tree found in warm areas along the equator that is the source of natural rubber milk, cutting the bark of this tree releases the natural sap which is collected and processed into natural latex rubber, sap has been “cloned” to make synthetic milk
House brand – Retailer’s private labeled brand that is only available through their store
HR (High Resilience) Foam – HR foam has a greater surface resilience than conventional foams because of its less uniform (more random) cellular structure, HR foam adds support, comfort, and resilience
Hybrid Mattress – Mattress that combines two different types of support technologies, e.g. memory foam and innersprings
Hypoallergenic – Used to describe certain foams, fibers, fabrics or other materials that reduce the presence, growth, and build up of allergens

Indentation Load Deflection (ILD) – Measures the firmness of foam, a 4″ thick piece of foam is compressed 25% of its original height, the force required to indent the foam this distance is measured in pounds, higher ILD = harder foam, also referred to as the IFD (Indention Force Deflection)

King – Measures 76″ x 80″
Knit – Type of cover fabric that is knitted rather than woven, it has a soft feel’ it may pick easily

Lamination – Bonding of layers of foam and/or other materials together into a composite layer using adhesives and/or heat
Latex Foam – Material manufactured partially or wholly from rubber tree sap, it is naturally anti-microbial and resistant to dust mites. May be 100% natural rubber, 100% synthetic rubber or a combination of the two
Loft – Height or “lift” gained by the depth of a filling material
Low-Profile Box Spring or Foundation – A shorter height box spring or foundation used to lower the overall height of the set

Marshall Coil – Springs individually wrapped in cloth, usually bonded together to create an innerspring unit, also referred to as pocketed coils
Mattress Topper – See Topper
Memory Foam – See Viscoelastic foam
Molded Foam – Foam product having the shape of the mold cavity in which it was produced, commonly used in pillows
Motion Transfer – Used to define the movement one feels from their  partner moving in bed

Non-Prorated (NPR) Warranty – Type of warranty covers full repair or replacement of a defective product for the entire warranty period

Offset Coil – innerspring coil that has squared edges to provide more flexibility when connected to other coils
Open Cell Structure – Permeable structure in foam where there is no barrier between its cells so that gases (or liquids) can pass through

Overlay – See Topper

Peeling – Process where thin sheets of foam are cut from a cylinder of foam
Percale – Plain weave with a guaranteed thread count of 180
Pieced – Foam that has been bonded together from smaller pieces usually used to create special shapes
Pilling – Tendency of fibers of fabrics to eventually work loose from the surface and form little balls that remain attached to the surface of the fabric
Pillowtop  – Type of mattress that features a gusseted panel which allows additional comfort layers to be added to the mattress
Pocketed Coils – Flexible coils enclosed in a flexible fabric pocket
Polyol – substance (usually oil-based) containing three or more hydroxyl groups, used as an ingredient in the manufacture of polyurethane foam
Polyester – Synthetic fiber used in textiles, it is durable and resistant to moisture, wrinkles and shrinkage
Polyurethane – Polymer connected by urethane groups which result from the reaction of various polyols and water
Pressure Points – Areas on the body (usually the shoulders and hips) where pressure builds up resulting in discomfort, pain, or numbness causing a sleeper to toss and turn which disrupts restful sleep
Prorated Warranty – A warranty that requires the owner to pay a portion of the replacement cost a certain period of time

Queen – measures 60″ x 80″
Quilting – Top layers of foams and fibers that are stitched directly to the fabric (ticking)

Resilience – Indicator of the surface elasticity (springiness) of ofam, it is measured by dropping a steel ball onto the foam from a given height and measuring the percentage the ball rebounds

Sag – Excessive depression in the mattress surface
Sateen – Weave that has more vertical than horizontal yarns resulting in an extremely soft fabric
Sleep Set – Mattress and box spring or foundation
Slow-Recovery Foam – See viscoelastic foam
Single – Measures 54″ x 75″, also called a twin
Single-Sided Mattress – Mattress construction designed with only one sleep surface eliminating the need to flip the mattress, rotating it is still beneficial
Spring Count – Total number of coils in an innerspring mattress, also referred to as coil count
Spring-on-Spring – Mattress construction featuring an innerspring unit with a second innerspring unit on top of the first
Springs – Wire shaped spirals used that provide support and resistance when weight is applied, consists of individual turns
Swedish Foam – Proprietary type of viscoelastic foam used exclusively by TempurPedic 

Talalay Process – More advanced method making latex  where the liquid material is injected into a mold that is then vacuum sealed, flash frozen, and then heated and cured,  the resulting material is very consistent and easily produced in a wide range of ILDs
Tape Edge – Sewn seam along the edge of the mattress that attaches the top and side panels
Tensile Strength – Pounds per square inch of force required to stretch a material to the breaking point
Thread  Count – Measurement of fabric density reflecting the number of threads per square inch counting both the warp and weft
Ticking – Fabric that encases the mattress and the foundation
Tight Top – Mattress type that does not have an extra gusset to contain the upholstery padding material (no pillowtop)
Topper – Layer of foam or other material placed on top of a mattress to enhance its comfort and reduce pressure points, also referred to as a mattress topper
Tufting – A process that ties the various layers of a mattress together by running a tough cord through the entire mattress from the top quilt panel through to the bottom, can be done manually or by machine
Twin – Measures 38″ x 75″, also called a single
Twin Long – Measures 38″ x 80″

Upholstery – Layers of foam and other cushioning materials on top of the innerspring or other support unit and the cover

Viscoelastic Foam -Specialized slower recovery type of polyurethane foam, responds to the sleeper’s temperature getting softer as the foam gets warmer

Warranty – Statement by the manufacturer that indicates under what terms they will repair or replace a product, can be either prorated or non-prorated (NPR)

Zoning – Used to describe areas on a mattress that have been reinforced with additional support or padding, often found through the center third of the mattress