"Active Fusion" and Talalay GL

Hi Phoenix,

I never would have guessed that there was so much to learn about mattresses. I’ve spent many hours reading the wealth of good information you have here. Thank you.

I have some questions about Talalay GL. Since it has gel in it, will that significantly reduce the longevity of the latex, like you say it would do to memory foam that contains gel particles in it (as in the Serta Icomfort)? How would the useful life of Talalay GL fast response tend to compare to LI’s regular blended Talalay?

For the slow response Talalay GL, is it combined with visco elastic memory foam? If so, would that combination result in shorter useful life?

I had a salesman who was trying to sell me the second generation of Pure Latex Bliss mattresses (because he doesn’t have the Active Fusion models yet), tell me that the new PLB models contain visco elastic (memory) foam in the core/support layers of the Pamper and Nature models? Could that be true?

I am considering both the 2nd versus latest generations of those beds (with Talalay topper, if Pamper) as well as Sleep Ez 10000. Which will be the most durable and longest lasting? I’m 6’3" and 215 to 230 lbs. My wife is 5’2" and 160 lbs. We both have neck and shoulder problems, both mostly side sleepers, though I sleep on my stomach a couple of hours per night.

If we spend the money for PLB I would want it to last at least 10 years. Is it reasonable to think that a bed without separate, split layering could work for us both?

Hi 25red33me8,

I don’t know of any specific factual or definitive information that would answer this but in general terms a particulate “filler” of any kind will tend to reduce the useful life of a foam to some degree. Having said that … it also depends on the amount and type of the filler and most foams can “tolerate” fillers to some smaller degree without a noticeable effect in longevity. I haven’t heard or seen any hearsay or empirical evidence or reports that Celsion (the old name for Talalay GL fast response) is any less durable than regular Talalay (and I have with particulate memory foam) but hearsay would also be a less reliable way to measure any difference for certain unless clear and specific patterns with larger numbers of people become obvious (which hasn’t happened). Overall … it doesn’t seem to have a significant or at least obvious effect and whether this is because of the innate strength of latex or the amount or type of the phase change microparticles that are used is open to question … at least until some evidence or information becomes available that is more definitive.

I haven’t been able to find out the method or chemicals that are used to make fast response latex into a slow response material (possibly by blending a viscoelastic material into the latex or the use of some kind of plasticizer or softener or other chemical) but I (and others I know) are trying to track down more specific information about this. In the meantime … it seems to me (based on speculation) and there are some reports I’ve heard that may indicate that it may be less durable than fast response Talalay.

If by “second generation” he means the Hybrid 3.0 slow response models then they do have slow response Talalay (which he may be thinking is the same as memory foam) in the comfort layers (but not the support core). If he means the 2nd generation of the Natural or the All Natural line then this is completely inaccurate. Even a memory foam mattress doesn’t use memory foam in the deeper support layers because it’s too soft.

Assuming you are comparing the same materials (blended to blended or 100% natural to 100% natural) … from a material point of view they are both made of the same type of foam so some of the secondary factors in durability (discussed in post #2 here) would play a larger role in any durability comparisons between them. The PLB topper is 14 - 15 ILD and the top comfort layers are usually 19 ILD so both of these are softer (and probably thicker) than SleepEz uses as their soft comfort layer so from this point of view the SleepEz would be more durable but it would depend to some degree on the specific layering of the mattresses you were comparing. Layer thickness and mattress design and the other factors mentioned in the linked post would also play a role but with your weight the thicker/softer layers of the PLB would make a noticeable difference in reducing durability IMO (and it could also be more risky than using firmer comfort layers especially for stomach sleeping).

I doubt that the topper would last for 10 years before it softened enough that you may need to replace it. This would depend though on the topper thickness and on all the other variables and the mattress layering as well and perhaps most of all on your tolerance for foam softening in terms of alignment. The topper would also lessen the wear on the mattress comfort layers which could extend it’s useful life.

It is also quite possible for the same layering to be suitable for two different people and it would depend on how each of you sank into the mattress (your weight distribution) and how you interacted with the different layers. For example my SO and I are very different in body type (she is 5’ 7", curvy, and around 130 and I’m 6’5", slim, and 195 but we both have similar needs and preferences because of different weight distribution and body shape/weight combinations). It’s also possible to have a mattress where a transition layer acts more as a comfort layer for a heavier person (tending to “allow” a deeper cradle for a heavier weight) but more of a support layer for a lighter person (tending to “stop” further sinking down for a lighter person).

Specific personal testing with both of you on the mattress is of course the most accurate way to know for sure how well a specific layering combination may work for both of you.