The princess and the lumpy futon mattress that could easily hide a thousand peas.
September 6, 2006 5:13 PM   Subscribe

Help me find a cheap fix for a lumpy futon mattress.

As it happened, my "furnished" sublet didn't come with a bed for me, so for the next four months I'm set to sleep on an old futon of my roommate's.

However, the mattress is quite lumpy, and probably wasn't that comfy even when new. I'm a student, and too poor as a matter of course to buy a whole new mattress.

Which leads me to my question: what brand/style of mattress topper is both comfy and cheap?
posted by anjamu to Home & Garden (10 answers total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
Egg crate.
posted by deadfather at 5:32 PM on September 6, 2006

I find my futon mattress(cotton stuffed) improves greatly with a regular thrashing. Take it off the frame and roll it, bend it, punch it and kick it until exhaustion ensues. If nothing else, this rearranges the lumps to some degree and makes for a fresh sleeping experience. Karate chops with accompanying vocalizations also work well.
posted by shoesfullofdust at 5:37 PM on September 6, 2006

shoesfullofdust is correct, except that for an old futon, hours in the sun first helps (used to handmake futons for a living).

There is a little one can do with massaging and pushing lumps apart, but, if it wasn't made properly to start with, you can only go so far.

If that fails, yeah, egg crate foam, but good quality foam will cost you as much as a new futon.
posted by QIbHom at 5:43 PM on September 6, 2006

I don't know what you consider cheap. My BF bought an expensive mattress that ended up being a tad too firm. We got a topper at Blood Bath and Beyond for about $80 that added enough cushioning to make the difference. Alternately, maybe you could beg borrow or steal a couple of thick comforters or duvets that you could put on the futon and then cover with a deep pocket fitted sheet.
posted by kimdog at 5:49 PM on September 6, 2006 [1 favorite]

SlimChanceFilter: Some futon purveyors will restuff an old lumpy mattress for free or a nominal fee. If your roommate happens to know where s/he got it - and kept the receipt! - the fates might smile upon ye.
posted by Dr. Wu at 8:54 PM on September 6, 2006

If the egg crate foam works out too expensive for you, you could probably buy a decent foam roll (some places call them 'camp rolls') for very little from a rubber/foam wholesaler. It should be enough to cover the lumpyness, ymmv.
posted by cholly at 10:43 PM on September 6, 2006

Best answer: Round up your angriest friends and beat it with sticks. I had a craptacular futon that was fixed by letting a very frustrated young man old take to it with a broom handle. I held one end, another mate held the other while my broom-weilding maniac whacked it senseless. We'd rotate it every now and then. It became a magical monthly thing - he'd get some therapy, and I'd get a good nights sleep. Everyone wins!

What's the base of the futon like, incidentally? If it's a crappy base with a lot of gaps, making a base out of cardboard boxes also helps, even if it is less violently fun.
posted by Jilder at 11:49 PM on September 6, 2006

Best answer: If you can afford a cheap knock-off at some wholesale store, memory foam will make the most difference. I am still on a crappy futon from college but with the memory foam topper you wouldn't even guess it.
posted by rmless at 8:07 AM on September 7, 2006

Seconding the memory foam topper. I got a 2" thick one at TJMaxx for about $40. I used it on my futon for two years, and now that I have a real mattress I use it on there. Admittedly, my futon mattress was already pretty nice, but I'm pretty sure I could sleep on the floor with that topper.

I've tried the egg crate versions before: they're alright, but they tend to get flattened. For four months though, that could work well enough.
posted by good for you! at 11:48 AM on September 7, 2006

Response by poster: Looks like I'm going to go the stick route for now, and if that doesn't do anything, we're on to memory foam.

Thanks, all!
posted by anjamu at 4:11 PM on September 9, 2006

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