Too cold or too hot in bed?

kulkote bed showing all the layers

Overheating in Bed

One of the most common complaints when you’re in bed is that feeling of being too hot. When you jump into bed, you’re like a human water bottle, and you quickly start to heat up the foam layers below.

This results in throwing off covers, sticking out a foot to cool down, or just general unrest while trying to sleep. However, your partner might suffer the exact opposite and feel cold in bed.

Silver Ferns captain Ameliaranne Ekenasio & her husband have this exact problem. Watch their story below. We’ve teamed up with a US tech firm, Kulkote, to create a heat-regulating innovation that’s designed to help you sleep without getting too hot or cold.

Silver Ferns captain Ameliaranne Ekenasio & husband Damien

KulKote Temperature Regulating Technology

“The technology’s been around for a while, but no one’s really thought to put it in a mattress before,” says Sleepyhead owner Graeme Turner. So how does it work? Inside KulKote are tiny microcapsules which, once you’re lying on the mattress, heat up and liquefy inside the layer and start the process of absorbing heat. Which might make the bed feel cooling.

“The advantage of it is that we put a coating of the KulKote on the foam, so when you’re lying on the bed there’s actually a coolness to the bed and it moves the heat away from your body,” says Graeme.

However, KulKote cleverly doesn’t take away all your heat. It senses what’s needed to keep the bed cool or warm according to your body temperature.


How to keep cool in bed?

Here’s the simple science behind KulKote in your mattress. When your skin temperature reaches between 29°C and 33°C, the KulKote technology activates. Auckland University testing found that in a simulation of someone asleep on the KulKote mattress, the sleep surface reached 29°C and stayed at this temperature for 22 straight hours. Now that is a cool bed!

graph showing bed with kulkote technology

But, on a traditional mattress without KulKote, the sleep surface reached 35°C and stayed that way – a full six degrees hotter. A hot mattress is not ideal to sleep in unless you’re a hot sleeper.

graph showing bed without kulkote technology

It’s similar technology to what’s used in spacesuits to regulate the body temperature of an astronaut. Bringing this innovation back to Earth and into your sleep has become an integral part of the Sleepyhead product design team. Graeme Turner is adamant it will “revolutionize the way beds are made in the future”.

His product design team has worked with KulKote to advance the innovation further by integrating both silver and copper into the technology to boost its benefits. Silver has for centuries been used as an antimicrobial to kill harmful bacteria. It’s now been combined with KulKote to not only help regulate temperature but also to keep the mattress fresher and more hygienic for a healthier sleep.

Sleepyhead mattress design team
Sleepyhead Owner Graeme Turner & the product design team

“Kulkote has really been a game changer for us in the way we look at how people sleep.”

How to stay cool at night in bed?

Combining copper and KulKote together supercharges the temperature regulation, as copper is one of Mother Nature’s best- known thermal conductors. Sleepyhead’s Group Innovation Manager Ashe Seatter says: “KulKote has really been a game changer for us in the way we look at how people sleep.

“We see a lot of innovative opportunities for the future around bed manufacturing as we constantly try to perfect what a great night’s sleep looks like,” he says.

kulkote temperature regulating technology poster

Hot and cold mattress

“Usually I sleep cold, the new mattress has a nice temperature.” Lynette, Katikati

A common question in the bed business is whether you sleep hot or cold. It’s interesting to note that women as a general rule sleep colder than men. This can be put down to your metabolic rate. Women have a lower metabolic rate so they produce less heat than men and this can make them feel colder in bed.


Do cooling mattress work?

“We replace our bed every 10 years and when I saw Kulkote, I wanted to try it as hot flushers are unfortunately a part of my life at the moment. Getting a good night’s sleep makes such a difference to life!” Sue, Otago

Men typically have more muscle mass and generate more heat, so that might explain why there may be a lot of disparity – not to mention duvet hogging – between men and women in bed. KulKote goes some way to help through its amazing temperature regulating technology. It’s now available exclusively in Sleepyhead beds. Try it and feel it yourself, these are some ways that you could stay cool at night in bed if you’re feeling hot.


Making the Right Choice For You:

No matter who is going to sleep with you, investing in the right sized mattress is one of the most important factors. Size is a key determiner of the quality of the sleep you’ll have. So don’t rush into picking a certain size mattress because that’s what you’ve always had.

View our range of mattresses here or take our Sleep Selector Quiz to find the right mattress for you.


Get a Better Nights Sleep with Sleepyhead:

Choosing the right bed size for you will ultimately affect your sleep. The sleep experts at Sleepyhead are here to ensure you get the rest you deserve. Get more sleep tips and helpful information on our Sleep Guide. Explore articles below before you buy your bed:

When should I replace my bed?

The best mattress for hot sleepers

Why a good mattress is so important to your sleep

Is a firm or soft mattress better for me?

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