We think there’s a lot to love about latex mattresses, but they’re not for everyone. We’re here to help you determine if a latex bed is the right fit for you.
In this guide, we’ll cover the following:
Latex mattresses are made with either all latex materials or a hybrid of latex and other materials like polyurethane foam and pocketed coils. These mattresses have a unique feel and are designed to offer pressure relief, cooling, and a healthier night’s sleep.
There are a lot of similarities between mattresses made with latex foam and those made with memory foam. They both have great pressure relief, motion isolation, and spinal alignment. But, there are also a few things latex has that memory foam mattresses don’t—they are naturally derived and have cooling properties.
Latex is a naturally cooling material, making them a great choice for hot sleepers. Depending on the manufacturing process, latex mattresses can create organic, eco-friendly mattresses.
Before you start shopping for latex, you should know how it’s made. While latex has the connotation of being all-natural and organic, that’s not always the case. The different types of latex mattresses are
While latex is a naturally sourced material from rubber trees, not all latex mattresses contain 100 percent latex. Before the completed latex mixture is poured into the mold used to make the mattress, fillers can be added to cut down on costs.
In most cases, polyurethane foam is the filler added to create synthetic latex. But buyer beware! As long as there is a certain percentage of all-natural latex used in a mattress it can be marketed as “Natural Latex.”
To be sure you are buying a 100% natural latex mattress, make sure it is labeled as such. Although the cost will be higher, natural latex is more durable and has greater health benefits.
While we recommend selecting a natural latex mattress to derive all of the benefits of this material, we also know that it’s the most expensive option, and it may not be in everyone’s budget.
Synthetic and blend latex mattresses are considerably cheaper than an all-natural latex mattress. Synthetic latex mattresses are made almost exclusively with a mixture of chemicals, so you may deal more with the unpleasant odors from off-gassing when you first setup the mattress.
You may have also seen the words “Dunlop” and “Talalay” latex in your search. These are not different kinds of natural latex, but rather the process used to turn liquid latex into latex foam.
In general, the differences between the two processes are the end result:
In some cases, you will see Dunlop latex as the base layer of a mattress for its support and Talalay latex as the top layer for its cushion.
Still on the fence? We’ll go over some advantages and disadvantages of buying a latex mattress.
A latex mattress can be a great investment for your sleep. There are many benefits to this type of bed.
On the flip side, there are a number of factors to be aware of when shopping for a latex mattress.
Finally, we’ll give you a checklist of all the factors you should consider when selecting the right latex mattress for you.
Your sleep position should greatly factor in to the mattress that you ultimately try to buy. Luckily, latex mattresses work for all positions; here’s how.
Side sleepers need a mattress that will keep their spine perfectly straight, but they also need a mattress that will keep pressure off of their shoulder and hips. Latex is a naturally pressure-relieving foam, that is ultra-responsive—good thing, because side sleepers also tend to be combination sleepers.
People who sleep on their front need a firm mattress that, like side sleepers, keeps pressure off of their hips and shoulders. Many latex beds come with the option to choose your firmness level, so stomach sleepers shouldn’t have a problem finding a firm bed to keep their spine aligned.
Back sleepers need a mattress that allows them to maintain the natural curve of the spine. Latex foam is just contouring enough to conform to the spine, but firm enough that you won’t sink into the mattress and ruin your alignment.
Latex mattresses are known to be some of the more expensive beds in the market, so you may be wary of choosing one if you have a tight budget. Even within the category of latex mattresses, though, there is a wide price range depending on mattress materials and size.
The cheapest option will be synthetic or blend mattresses made with Talalay processing from online mattress brands. All-natural latex with Dunlop processing is more expensive for its high quality, and shopping online helps cut out the costs of the middleman.
A support core is an internal layer of a latex mattress that provides pressure relief and the bouncy feel of latex. In an all-natural latex mattress, the support core is made completely of foam. This is the most durable and long-lasting.
In synthetic and blended latex mattresses, the support core is made with other materials like pocketed coils or polyfoam. These will not be as durable, but will likely be cheaper.
Latex mattresses are usually between 6 to 12 inches, with blended latex mattresses sitting on the higher end of this range. Thicker mattresses will offer more support and durability, especially for heavier sleepers.
The ILD rating for a latex mattress will let you know how soft or firm the mattress is. Talalay latex typically has a lower ILD rating and is softer than Dunlop latex. Synthetic and blended latex also have lower ILD ratings and are softer than all natural latex.
The softest mattresses will have an ILD rating below 16, medium mattresses will have a rating between 24-29, and the firmest will be above 39.
Each mattress review goes through an in-depth evaluation in our mattress lab where we test key performance factors like pressure relief, spine alignment, motion transfer, and cooling. These results will help you determine how well you might sleep on each mattress.
We also take a look at functional and convenience characteristics of the mattress like shipping, how easy it is to set up, trial period, return policy, and customer service. No one wants to deal with hassles when buying a mattress, so we do the research for you!
We talk to real customers about their experiences and analyze thousands of customer reviews to share the good (and the bad) for every mattress. This allows you to evaluate each product based on our expert reviews as well as what customers have to say.
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In a recent study, Mattress Advisor found that 44% of consumers are overwhelmed by shopping for a new mattress, primarily due to the many options available, price, and finding the right mattress for their individual needs. At Mattress Advisor, we make it easy to choose the best mattress for your budget, sleeping style and lifestyle without ever having to step foot into a mattress store.
Each mattress we review is tried and thoroughly tested using our proprietary methodology so that we can provide our readers with the most accurate and comprehensive scores. We’ve spent thousands of hours of research and comparison shopping to help you find your perfect mattress quickly and easily.