Break Down of Latex

Went to the Denver Mattress store today to check out the Aspen and Snowmass. While there, the salesman handed me a sample piece of the latex used in the mattress and pointed out how grainy the surface was with the admonition that I needed to make sure that I have a good covering for the mattress. He informed me that the surface was as bad as it is because of exposure to the light and handling. YIKES!

Is this a reflection of the quality of the latex Denver Mattress uses?

If the mattress stays in its cover and a waterproof cover can this kind of breakdown be avoided or delayed?

Just really surprised by this because the samples in the other stores that I handled were squishy and smooth and left no sandy residue on one’s hands.

Hi Searchin,

My guess is that they are using this to show people the importance of covering latex with a quality material so they can see what happens when it is exposed to air over the long term. It is likely a very old piece of latex that they have purposely kept out in the air for this very purpose.

Ozone and ultraviolet light are two of the biggest enemies of latex and cause it to oxidize and become brittle and crumble. While latex is the longest lasting of the foams … it should always be covered to make sure that it doesn’t break down from exposure to air and light. This doesn’t happen instantly (a few weeks exposure will not normally harm it) but it will certain accelerate aging if it is over the longer term.

There’s lots more in post #2 here about latex breakdown including several links with a lot of more technical information and this link is also a good reference source.

There are only two main suppliers of Talalay latex used in North America (Latex International and Radium) and both produce very high quality Talalay latex. The Denver mattress latex is the same as any other Talalay latex produced by Latex International (their supplier) except they wanted to show people the importance of protecting a very high quality material.