Can't beat buckling gel

I have chronic lower back pain and neck pain. My wife has mild scoliosis, hip pain, and shoulder pain. I’m 5’10" and weigh 170. My wife is similar height but less weight. We’ve tested just about every kind of bed (Latex, Memory Foam, Buckling gel) from many stores around the Salt Lake City area. I thought the latex bed with a foam core at R&S was great. My wife said it was putting pressure on her and didn’t like it. She preferred the memory foam that sunk too deep for me. Gary at R&S was there and knew his numbers. (The guys at Haaga in Bountiful had never heard of ILD!). He correctly guessed that I was an engineer. Right afterwards, we went to Intellibed to compare. The buckling gel (intelligel) feels much nicer for both of us. Seems like a perfect mix of comfort, support, and responsiveness. I was surprised my wife agreed after previous complaints about the latex mattress. I would have thought the Intelligel too supportive for her considering her preference for the memory foam. I was hoping the latex bed would work because it’s supposed to be very durable and the price was lower than Intellibed. The bed we like at Intellibed costs $3400 before tax! Plus we’d like an adjustable base which costs $3700 at Intellibed (Mantua Contempo) or maybe we could get a similar model (Leggett and Platt S-Cape) from online for $1800. Intellibed says it’s okay to put an innerspring mattress on an adjustable base but it doesn’t seem quite right in my mind.

The Intellibed Deluxe (store name)is not clearly found on their website. It’s like described in Posture Perfect Deluxe but it has Soy foam instead of Latex foam. The Intellibed 30 Deluxe description is similar as well but I understand the store model does not have pocketed coils. The feel of the “buckling gel columns” is different than the other materials (in a very good way). I was surprised when the salesman suggested laying on a bare piece of 3.5 inch buckling gel on the hard wood floor. I tried it on my back and sides and was surprised by the comfort it provided. It is the only bed we’ve agreed on although that is not so important because we’re planning on getting a split king.

I’d appreciate any feedback, suggestions before I make a purchase.


Hi Nmart,

Buckling column gel is certainly a unique material and is also very durable. It’s one of those materials (much like memory foam) that tend to generate strong feelings either for or against it depending on preferences but for those who like how it feels and performs it can certainly make a great choice. You can see some of my comments about the Intellibed (and other types of buckling column gel) in this topic and in this topic and a forum search on Intelligel (you can just click this) will bring up more about them as well. A forum search on buckling column gel (you can just click this as well) will also bring up more comments and feedback about other versions as well.

For those where the unique properties and “feel” of a buckling column mattress are enough to justify the higher price and if they are a good match for the parts of your personal value equation that are most important to you then they can certainly be a suitable choice as long as there are no “weak links” in the mattress in the other materials besides the buckling column gel (see this article and the quality/durability guidelines I would suggest here)

An adjustable bed is more of a “commodity” purchase based on features vs cost commparisons and can be purchased anywhere because they don’t require “testing” like a mattress. Post #3 here and the adjustable bed thread it links to will be helpful in choosing an adjustable bed and also included some sources that you can use for “value references”.

Most foam mattresses and most pocket coil innersprings will be fine on an adjustable bed. Innerspring mattresses that have helical wires or border rods can be customized specifically to be suitable for an adjustable bed but most of them wouldn’t be suitable.

So called “soy foam” is just polyfoam where a small percentage of one of the two main chemicals used to make the foam (the polyol) has been replaced with a soy oil based derivative (see post #2 here). You can use the same quality/density guidelines as regular polyfoam.