Well here is an update after sleeping on latex for just about 2 years now. The mattress (SleepEZ 13000) is still absolutely perfect- not a dent or hollow to be seen. I have no complaints about the quality whatsoever. The cover is still plush and cozy.
Unfortunately, it seems that latex just isn’t for me. I love how it holds my spine in a neutral position but somehow it is hard on my muscles and nerves. Although the bed feels right when I first go to bed, it seems to feel progressively harder through the night. I wake up in the morning feeling like thousands of tiny hammers have been pounding on me all night. IMy muscles have progressively gotten sorer and tighter since sleeping on latex. I’ve tried adding softer latex as a topper and, while it feels really nice, it has not changed the way I feel in the morning. My husband and I are both ready to throw in the towel at this point.
We’ve been out to test beds locally again and find that it is the pocketed coils that always feel best to us. There are some mattresses now that have a pocketed coil base and micro coils above that feel just wonderful. The problem is, it’s easy to find a mattress that feels great at the showroom but the question is how will it hold up over time, because with a coil mattress we will be getting back into that issue of the soft upper layers that tend to develop sags (or “body impressions” as they like to call them).
Given that we definitely want pocketed coils, are there any manufacturers of this type of mattress that you know of that make a high quality product using high quality foams? We are in the Puget Sound area and have gone down to Tacoma to get a little more variety to test out. There is a place called Mattress Makers that carries Corsicana and I think some of their own mattresses. Other than that, it seems you have to travel to Portland area to find a local manufacturer? (Parklane)
Thanks for the update and I’m sorry to hear that your mattress isn’t working out as well for you as you hoped for.
There are a few suggestions that may be worth considering though before you “throw in the towel” and replace your mattress completely.
There are some people that don’t do as well with the higher surface tension and resilience of latex and may do better with a more “relaxed” sleeping surface that has less surface tension or shear forces acting on the skin (see post #18 here).
In cases like these a “down alternative” (slick polyester fibers) mattress pad something like this or like this would be well worth trying to see if it improves your sleeping experience … especially if it has a good return policy that lets you try it with little risk.
Something like the lanoodles topper here or in some cases even a thicker wool topper (see post #3 here) can also help solve these type of issues if they are related to the surface tension, resilience, and shear forces of the sleeping surface.
As you probably know microcoils are a type of pocket coil that uses lower gauge steel, usually with higher coil counts that are softer than the pocket coils that are uses as the support core for a mattress. They are generally used as comfort layers to replace softer foam materials instead of as a firmer support system like “traditional” pocket coils. They are a good quality and durable component that certainly wouldn’t be a “weak link” in a mattress. Like any other choice between different materials and components they are more of a preference choice than a better worse choice because different people can have very different preferences about the type of materials or mattresses that they prefer. You can read more about microcoils in this article and in post #8 here and post #2 here.
Like the choice of comfort layers … the choice between different types of support cores are also a preference choice and not a “better/worse” choice. There is also more about some of the differences between a latex support core vs an innerspring or pocket coil support core in post #28 here.
Some of the better sources for innerspring/latex mattresses (including pocket coils) that I’m aware of are listed in post #2 here but this is far from a complete list since many local manufacturers or retailers may also have similar mattresses on their floor.
I would tend to avoid most of the Corsicana mattresses because they usually aren’t transparent about the quality and durability of all the materials and components in their mattresses and they tend to use lower quality and less durable materials that would be a weak link in their mattresses.
Some of the better options or possibilities I’m aware of in and around the Seattle/Tacoma area (subject to making sure that any specific mattress you are considering meets the quality/value guidelines here) are listed in post #2 here.
I don’t keep a record of the individual mattresses that the retailers and manufacturers in the hundreds of forum lists throughout the forum carry on their floor (it would be a bigger job than anyone could keep up with in a constantly changing market) but checking their websites and making some preliminary phone calls to the retailers/manufacturers that are on the list that are in reasonable driving distance is always a good idea before you visit any store anyway. This will tell you which of them carry mattresses that would meet your specific criteria, are transparent about the quality and durability of the materials in their mattresses (see this article), and that carry the type of mattresses that you are interested in testing in the budget range you are comfortable with. Once you have checked their websites and/or talked with the ones that interest you then you will be in a much better position to decide on the ones that you are most interested in visiting based on the results of your preliminary research and conversations.
Welcome to the “club” of we unfortunate few that cannot tolerate the push-back of latex. I had the same experience as you and have finally given up on the dream of enjoying the benefits of a latex mattress. Please post if you find a mattress that works for you.
Hi Pheonix! Yes, this would definitely be me. And, secondly, there is the bouncy, jiggly feeling of latex. I have come to realize that I do not sleep well on a surface that has movement to it. This goes for both latex that tends to want to jiggle around and memory foam that keeps changing as it’s warming up and adjusting to pressure. My body can’t relax on a surface that isn’t stable.
I had kind of resigned myself to the fact that I can’t sleep well because my body is just painful and then we took a trip and the hotel had a great innerspring mattress - after the second night I realized I need to make a change.
[quote]In cases like these a “down alternative” (slick polyester fibers) mattress pad something like this or like this would be well worth trying to see if it improves your sleeping experience … especially if it has a good return policy that lets you try it with little risk.
Something like the lanoodles topper here or in some cases even a thicker wool topper (see post #3 here) can also help solve these type of issues if they are related to the surface tension, resilience, and shear forces of the sleeping surface.[/quote]
I would love to find something that would make this bed work for me but it would need to be more substantial than a mattress pad.
I’m concerned the lanoodle, being latex, would have the same sort of problems I have with latex. I tried an Aerus memory foam topper but I found that it actually accentuated the jiggly feeling, I felt like I was sleeping on quivering jello. I’m concerned anything I add will just carry the jiggling up through it.
I would need something dense to dampen the jiggling and something soft to cushion my poor bones. Maybe what I need is a pillowtop for this mattress. Does anyone make an aftermarket pillowtop?
I just did a quick search and came up with this company- has anyone had experience with Sterling Sleep Systems: This looks interesting! Apparently their mattresses are made so the inside is accessible- the top zips off and you can replace parts when they wear out. Now this is an idea whose time has come!
Love the feel of those microcoils.
I realize this, Pheonix, it’s the choice of manufacturer that is a better/worse choice, I wish I could find one known for using quality materials. Do any of the members of this site make a non-latex, pocket coil mattress?
Trying to chase down what is inside of every mattress that feels comfortable is time consuming, frustrating and there is no way to know if you are even being told the truth. If memory foam toppers are misrepresented as to their density, when you can easily weigh and measure to check them, how can you know the foams inside of a mattress are not misrepresented as well.
I know by experience that I love pocket coils. I can walk into any mattress store and quickly find a pocket coil mattress that feels great to me. BUT I also know from experience the upper layers of foam on that mattress will quickly wear out and I’ll be sleeping in a trough. So, isn’t there a company making coil spring beds that is known for using quality foams that will last longer?
When you think of the fact that it’s pretty much only those top few inches that wear out, why do they use subpar foams there? How much could an excellent quality foam really add to the overall cost of the mattress, when you consider how much mattresses cost? Is it hard to find high quality foams that are comfortable? I was told by one person they cannot manufacture foams that last like they used to because of environmental regulations.
I think if I’m going to move to a spring bed, I would just as soon avoid latex.
By the way, wouldn’t it be nice if you could go to a site and quickly sort the offerings by what is inside the mattress? And if each mattress had a diagram showing what’s inside? Sheesh, so many sites are full of useless, distracting information. When they sort by “collection” it is especially mind-boggling. “Collections” mean nothing to a new visitor.
Thank you, I appreciate the heads-up on that. Very much.
Thanks, I’ll be looking into these.
In my nearby mattress stores these are the brands that are available: Tempur-Pedic, Sealy, Serta, Beautyrest, Stearns & Foster, Comfor-Pedic, Pure Latex Bliss, Icomfort, Englander, Easy-Rest, Restonic, Legget & Platt, Corsicana, Lady Americana, Emerald Sleep Systems. I don’t think a single one of these is transparent about what is inside of their mattresses. Conversations with salespeople has not tended to add any useful information. Beyond that, I could try some kind of mail order but then I cannot test the mattress myself first.
(ETA: I should point out, it is the above makers of spring mattresses that tend to not be transparent. )
The “quivering jello” feeling that some people connect with latex is often related to the specific design of a mattress and the softness and/or thickness of the latex layers in their mattress and would also be more related to Talalay than to Dunlop (which is a denser and less resilient material). Shredded latex or the lanoodles topper has a different “feel” compared to solid layers and you can get some sense of how it “feels” in post #2 here and the posts it links to.
If you add a firmer layer on top of softer latex then the softer layers underneath it can certainly “come through” and as you mentioned it can sometimes accentuate the feeling as well since the top layer can “feel” like it is unstable with the soft latex underneath it so you have a firmer sleeping surface with a more “jiggly” layer underneath it.
A pillowtop is just a mattress that has a topper that is attached to a mattress rather than a topper that is lying loosely on top of the mattress without being attached. There are hundreds of different types of “pillowtops” that use different combinations of materials and there are also hundreds of toppers that are available that can be used on top of a mattress.
If you decide to try a topper then post #2 here and the topper guidelines it links to can help you use your sleeping experience as a reference point and guideline to help you choose the type, thickness, and firmness for a topper that has the least possible risk and the best chance for success and also includes a link to a list of some of the better online sources for toppers I’m aware of as well.
Many people call the down alternative toppers I linked a “pillow top” because they can have a “feel” that is similar to some of the softer pillowtops that use thicker layers of fiber in the quliting layers of the mattress. Many hotel mattresses use similar mattress pads or toppers to help create the “feel” of their mattresses. All of this or anything related to how a mattress “feels” is very subjective.
Sterling Sleep Systems makes component mattresses which certainly have some advantages over “finished” mattresses because some or all of the layers and components in the mattress can be exchanged to fine tune the “feel”, comfort, and support of the mattress both before and after a purchase. They also have the advantage of being able to replace any individual layers that have softened or broken down before the others (usually the upper layers) or if your needs or preferences change over time without having to replace the entire mattress. Many of the members of this site (and others that aren’t members) make component mattresses but most of them are latex or latex hybrids of various types rather than more traditional mattresses that use polyfoam comfort layers. Many airbeds are also component mattresses as well. As with any mattress purchase it still important to make sure that a component mattress uses good quality and durable materials in the design so you can confirm that there are no lower quality materials or weak links in the mattress.
Many mattresses manufacturers (probably the majority) include some pocket coil mattresses in their lineup that use a wide range of different types of pocket coils with different types and combinations of comfort layers as well (such as memory foam, polyfoam, microcoils, natural or synthetic fibers, and latex of course). There would be a range of pocket coil mattresses available locally in almost every area of the country including some that are made by the members here if they happen to be local to you. There are fewer “non latex” pocket coil mattresses available online because of the cost that can be involved in shipping them. Some of the major online retailers (such as Costco, Amazon, US Mattress) also sell pocket coil mattresses but many if not most of these use lower quality and less durable materials in their comfort layers and/or don’t disclose the quality/durability of the materials they use which means that I would avoid them. One of the “simplified choice” mattresses listed here (Winkbeds) also has a “coil on coil” mattress that uses a pocket coil support core and a microcoil comfort layer but it also includes 2" of 1.5 lb polyfoam which is “on the edge” of being a weak link in the mattress (I would normally suggest looking for mattresses that don’t contain more than “about an inch or so” of lower quality/density materials in the comfort layers … see the quality/durability guidelines here).
This is one of the reasons that the knowledge, transparency, and integrity of the retailer or manufacturer you are dealing with can be one of the most important parts of a successful mattress purchase … I certainly agree that good manufacturers or retailers that are transparent about the materials and components in their mattresses can certainly also save consumers a great deal of time and frustration.
I think that the two words or phrases that would answer this most accurately would be “cost” and “built in obsolescence”. This is one of the hallmarks of most of the major manufacturers in the industry.
While “too much” information can be just as misleading as too little information because consumers can often tend to buy a mattress based on specs that they don’t fully understand and buy a mattress for all the wrong reasons … I certainly agree that if more manufacturers or retailers made it simple to find out the information that is important to know to make an informed choice (see this article) at least “on request” it would certainly make the process of finding a good quality/value mattress and making meaningful comparisons between mattresses much simpler and easier.
I would avoid the brands you listed that either aren’t likely to disclose the quality/density of the materials in their mattresses or that you know ahead of time are generally poor value compared to other manufacturers that use similar quality materials in much lower budget ranges (see this article). I would also talk with any local retailer or manufacturer you plan to visit in person on the phone before visiting them to confirm they are both willing and able to provide all the information you need.
Pure Latex Bliss, Easy Rest, and “some” Restonic, Englander, and Lady Americana licensees and/or the retailers that carry them are be transparent about their materials. Tempurpedic is no longer transparent about their materials on their website but the specs of most of their mattresses are fairly widely known. You would have a much more difficult time with the rest and if you are able to find out the specs of their foam layers you would only be finding out that they are using materials that would be wise to avoid in almost every case anyway.