Should You Flip or Rotate Your Mattress?

When you own a mattress, it’s important to take steps to ensure it lasts as long as possible. Regularly flipping and rotating mattresses was common practice in older mattress models, as it allowed the wear and tear caused by sleeping in the same position to be dispersed across the mattress. 

However, modern mattress construction and maintenance looks different today. While your mattress upkeep should include regular cleaning and the use of a mattress protector, not all mattresses require flipping and rotating. We’ll cover whether you should flip or rotate your mattress and how often each mattress type requires you to do so.

Should You Flip Your Mattress?

Most modern mattresses are not meant to be flipped, as they feature special layered construction, with each layer performing a specific function. Common mattress layers include:

  • A (sometimes removable) fabric cover to protect the mattress
  • One or more comfort layers for cushioning
  • A firm support core made of dense foam or pocketed coils

Modern mattresses often feature numerous layers, but the comfort and support layers are distinctive in purpose and feel. Flipping a mattress with this construction would leave sleepers lying on the support layer, which is often made up of coils or dense materials that lack enough cushioning to be comfortable for most. Additionally, the comfort layers are not intended to support the weight of the entire mattress. 

However, some modern mattresses are designed to be flippable. Mattress manufacturers note whether their mattresses are designed to be flipped or not. A single mattress with multiple firmness options, for example, gives sleepers the option to use whichever side suits their firmness preferences. Other flippable mattresses can be turned over once one side begins to develop impressions or sag, prolonging the mattress’ lifespan.

Should You Rotate Your Mattress?

It’s common for a mattress to wear out in some spots faster than others due to certain areas, such as the hips and shoulders, concentrating more weight and sinking deeper into the mattress. Periodically rotating your mattress can ease some of the premature sagging that occurs from the constant wear sleeping in the same position causes. Rotating your mattress differs from flipping it, and most modern mattresses can be rotated. To rotate your mattress, simply move it so the side where you place your head is now at your feet and vice versa.

Some specialty mattresses should not be rotated. These mattresses are constructed with specific support zones and are designed to only provide comfort when used in designated positions.

How Often Should You Rotate Your Mattress?

Many mattress manufacturers outline how often their mattresses should be rotated. You should be able to find this information in your mattress manual. Most manufacturers recommend rotating your mattress multiple times a year, though different types of mattresses should be rotated more frequently than others.

Regardless of how often you rotate your mattress, ensure you stick to a consistent schedule. It’s important to give each side of your mattress equal time to absorb the pressure from your body so that no one area of your mattress develops too much wear and tear. With a regular rotation schedule, it’s possible to prolong your mattress’ lifespan. 

Memory foam and latex mattresses: Consider rotating your memory foam or latex mattress one to two times per year. These materials take more time to wear down, allowing the mattresses to last longer.

Hybrid mattresses: It’s best to rotate your hybrid mattress two to three times per year. The foam in hybrid mattresses helps to absorb pressure, but frequent rotating can prolong its lifespan.

Newer innerspring mattresses: If you own a newer innerspring mattress, you should rotate it one to two times per year. Unlike older innerspring mattresses, these beds contain foam that wears down less quickly.

Older innersprings: Older innerspring mattresses should be rotated two to five times per year. Older innerspring construction wears down faster, and frequent rotating can extend its lifespan.

Regular maintenance and rotation can extend your mattress’ lifespan, but all mattresses require replacement at some point. Once a mattress has undergone too much wear and tear, it loses its support, which can lead to discomfort and affect sleep quality. On average, you can expect your mattress to last 6 to 10 years.