DH and I have a $$ pillow top mattress (because he's a princess, lol), but the kids and the guest room have very inexpensive mattresses and my experience shopping was that less expensive mattresses tend to be firmer. They may not hold up as long, but if you're not too heavy, they may be perfectly adequate.
[url=http://www.zafu.net/sleepergonomics.html]sleep ergonomics benefits of sleeping on hard surface soft beds bad for back[/url]
Ikea does also have organic/sustainable mattresses and wood slat frames -- but it will be the more expensive end of things.
I try to buy as much of my stuff fair trade and orgnic as I can -- and also locally made when I can. I save up to pay cash for such things. But, it aligns with my values so. . .
I gave up the bed almost 2 years ago. During the summer I sleep on top of a sleeping bag. That gives just enough cushion on top of the floor. During the winter I add a camping mat underneath the sleeping bag for added insulation. The few times I have slept on a mattress in the last couple of years has led to back pain. My chiropractor noticed a significant positive shift in my ribcage a few months after I started sleeping on the floor. I noticed better sleep and less pain. The first couple of weeks were a little rough though. I am thinking of building a sleeping platform of some kind.
A futon mattress on the floor is my favorite. Its just enough padding to keep your hips and other bony parts from getting sore.
After going to IKEA and laying on every mattress they had, I decided on [url=http://www.ikea.com/us/en/catalog/products/30139835/#/20139826]SULTAN FIDJETUN Memory foam mattress - Twin - IKEA[/url]
It's odd because I was searching for the firmest mattress, perhaps one that felt the most like laying on a slab of rock. This one was in the "plush" rating, aka not firm, and I found it the most comfortable. Well, maybe not the MOST, but in my price range yes. I wonder if it will soften up too much as I lay on it (they have a 90 day return policy so I'll at least be good on that).
Unfortunately they placed the Queen size in the Full section.. and I grabbed the wrong one. I need to take it back now. Round 2, maybe I'll decide on a different one this time.
@Derpamix, I'd love to get that/try it out but right now I got a Full frame and it won't fit :(
The sample models in the store are usually already worn-in, so if that one is good to you, the one you got should be fine. If you like how your mattress is right now, you might not like it as much in a little while.
Then again, maybe I just got used to mine and the mattress itself never changed.
[QUOTE=namelesswonder;1069493]I've read about Japanese floor mats...can't remember if they have any kind of name.[/QUOTE]
I have a normal bed which only gets used when I have company. I almost always sleep in my pitch black "sleep cave" in the storage area under the stairs that lead to my loft. I got a memory foam mattress topper just thick enough to take the sting out of the hardwood laminate floors and cut it to fit in the space. Perfect combination of firm and soft.
we also got a plush sultan model from ikea. Can't remember the exact name. I'm exactly the opposite of Zoe - i like the bed to be as tall as possible, so we put the slats on the highest mark & added a box spring too. I never thought i would like "plush" but i like this one. It really doesn't feel like what i would call "plush", it just feels great. LOVE OUR NEW BED AND MATTRESS!
We sleep on a 2" extra-firm natural latex foam mat, that was sold as a mattress topper. We just put it down on the floor and tuck a sheet around the edges. Easy peasy, very firm and super comfortable. I like sleeping on the floor--just feels more natural.
I just looked on Ebay (which is where we got ours) and I think this is pretty similar to ours:
[url=http://www.ebay.com/itm/Select-Luxury-E-C-O-Naturally-Dunlop-Latex-2-inch-Queen-size-Reversible-Queen-/350667155707?pt=Mattresses&hash=item51a56428fb]Select Luxury E C O Naturally Dunlop Latex 2 inch Queen Size Reversible Queen | eBay[/url]
If I recall correctly that's about what we paid as well. Highly recommended.