direct mattress makers in northern Virginia?

Like many others I stumbled upon this site in my desperation to get past chain store hype and find a mattress that stops giving me lower back pain upon arising in the morning. My last two purchases were major manufacturer inner spring and both began sagging after about 3 years. After realizing this pain didn’t come during work trips (staying at decent hotels), I realized the problem is not my back per say but my doggone mattress.

I am a back and side sleeper, 135 lb, like sleeping ‘cool’ and after rooting around this site am thinking latex is the best answer.

I am located just outside Wash D.C., in Northern VA…are there any ‘factory direct’ dealers in this area, or at least places that have real-deal latex that I could try out?

Many thanks, this forum is a real service to the sleepless public!!!

Hi gfandac,

There’s not a lot in the way of factory direct mattress manufacturers in the Washington, DC area (which I always find odd). There are however a number of options that provide better quality/value than the mainstream choices in the area. They are … Vienna, Leesburg, VA. Retail direct outlet for their own house brand (Urban organics latex mattresses), along with a range of mattresses made by Sherwood, Suite Sleep, and VI Springs (ultra premium). Good people who have always been knowledgeable and open about their mattresses when I have talked with them. Some good value.

Information – American Foam Center Fairfax, VA., Hagerstown, MD. American Foam Center. They are a foam outlet but are also a local factory direct mattress manufacturer. I talked with Robert (who is the owner) and it’s clear that he “knows his stuff” about foam. He has been making mattresses for 50 years and is the kind of person that will give you accurate information. He also has a “showroom” (of sorts) where different materials and layers can be tested. He uses high quality materials like Latex (Dunlop and Talalay), high quality polyfoam up to 2.8 lbs (true HR foam) and memory foam from a quality American supplier. Some good quality and better value choices here compared to most mainstream choices and they would certainly be worth including in your research. Make sure you call first because Robert is the person there with the knowledge. Wholesale manufacturer who sells through local retail outlets. Their retail store finder has a list of stores that carry them (I would call the retailer to make sure it’s up to date). I have talked with them and I know they work closely with their retailers and provide good quality and value. In particular though … I would talk with Michelle at in Williamsburg, VA who works very closely with them and is exceptionally knowledgeable and helpful about all their mattresses and mattress materials and construction in general and custom builds every mattress she sells. She is a great resource for Winndom regardless of which retailer you are dealing with. Bethseda, MD. They carry Savvy Rest component latex mattresses and OMI latex mattresses along with their own Ostrowpedic mattress as well. A retail direct outlet for Restwell. They sell a range of latex, memory foam, and other mattresses with fairly good value. Make sure you check the density of any polyfoam or memory foam in the mattress you are considering as some of them may be on the low side. Retail outlet with stores in Bethesda, Rockville, MD and Vienna, Alexandria, Fairfax, VA. They carry a version of the Pure Latex Bliss mattress line that is a high quality Talalay latex mattress. They are great for testing latex and better quality and value than latex mattresses made by most major brands but higher priced than most local manufacturers. They have good knowledge and service and are very informative and helpful. Retailer in Falls Church. They carry quite a range of alternative brands (some of which are more costly and some of which are much less). Classic Sleep (a smaller national brand) and Winndom (a local wholesale manufacturer) may be better value here. Retailer in Rockville, MD. They carry several brands which may have better materials, quality, and value including Therapedic, Eclipse, and Eastman House, Englander, Pure latex bliss. They carry latex, latex hybrids and other options such as gel memory foam that may have some better value and are open to supplying the specs of their mattresses (to the degree that the information from their manufacturers allow it) so customers can make more meaningful comparisons. Gaithersburg, MD Foam and Upholstery shop that also sells some mattresses. Talked with him and he knows his foam. Carries polyfoam and memory foam but no latex. Sells Otis futons and basic foam mattresses. Columbia, MD Vienna, VA and Rockville, MD. They carry Savvy Rest component latex mattresses which are a “choose your own layering” latex mattress that is available in both Dunlop and Talalay. They are in a higher budget range compared to other similar mattresses (several of the members here offer similar component latex mattresses for less) but they are a good place to test latex combinations and are knowledgeable about their materials so I would make some good value comparisons. The Savvy Rest company outlet itself may have the best choices available. They also carry a tufted wool mattress.
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Shop Affordable Home Furnishings & Home Goods - IKEA College Park, MD, Woobridge, VA. See post #3 here and the post it links to for some of the options here. Mt Airy, MD Carries Restonic Gel (but but no latex) and Reverie latex mattresses. Said they would get foam specs from their factories for those that ask. Annapolis, Kent Island, MD. Has a Serta all latex mattress made to their specs (with an inch of poly on the bottom). Retonic latex hybrids (2" and 4" latex) and all latex (with 1.5" poly on top). Good people locally owned. Mostly mainstream major brand mattresses though.

The next closest factory direct manufacturers are both about 100 miles away in or near Richmond. They are …

Find an Original Mattress Factory Store Regional factory direct manufacturer which makes a range of mattresses including a two sided latex hybrid and two memory foam models with good quality/value. Be aware that they often have their latex mattresses set up on a box spring rather than a solid foundation which will change the feel of the mattress. You may wish to ask them to set it up on a solid foundation when testing if you plan to use them on a solid foundation or adjustable bed.

Most of the chain stores in the area I looked at also have little to nothing I would consider good value or even worth testing.

Since you are lighter … you would probably do well with a 2-3" talalay latex comfort layer in the range of 19 - 24 ILD over a medium firm to firm core (Talalay or Dunlop) in the range of 32 ILD or higher. As a lower cost alternative you could use a latex comfort layer over either an innerspring (probably a pocket coil or an offset coil) or a HD polyfoam core (1.8 lb density at a minimum but preferably higher).

Hope this helps in your search.



Thank you so much for this information. I had a bad feeling DC would turn out to be a mattress makers’ desert.

After reading all the great reviews about Sleep EZ on the web, getting a mattress from them has great appeal…but I am without ready help to move these large, heavy pieces around once received. I wish they had a local affiliate to assist in such situations…or, do they?

A follow up if I could. During my research I ran across something called technogel. What is your take on this? I see its new, not widely offered and quite pricey…are you familiar with it? If I am already spending upwards of 1500 - 2000 for a mattress…could this be worth the price and waiting for? Really tired of spending big bucks on bad mattresses…

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Thanks again,

Hi gfandac,

Maybe nobody in DC sleeps … or maybe it’s because … ummm nope I’m not going there. This is a mattress forum not a political one :slight_smile:

SleepEz doesn’t have any local affiliates that I know of … but it isn’t as difficult as you may imagine as long as you have a friend (or 2) to help. The layers are not as heavy as a whole bed and most people have no problem putting the layers together.

I have been waiting for the Technogel to arrive and I am very optimistic about its qualities. Unfortunately the closest outlet to me that will have them is several hundred miles away so I won’t have a chance to test it for some time. I believe that it will be far superior to the “gel infused” memory foams and will be more durable, cooler, and “healthier” as well. The other side of that is that it is very expensive in the thickness that is needed for it to be effective in a mattress. Over time this may well change but I seriously doubt that it will be appearing in anything but high priced mattresses. I’ve been seriously considering a technogel pillow as well. I really like the concept … and while it may be worthwhile for exceptional needs or preferences (or for someone with a larger budget :)) … I would have a hard time justifying the expense given the alternatives.

Your link also reminded me that I neglected to include Healthy Back in my list in my last post (now added). They carry the Pure Latex Bliss line of talalay latex mattresses which make excellent testing grounds for different latex layerings (since the specs are known). They were carried by Sleepys but they discontinued them (probably because they were the best value in the store) and I didn’t add healthy back as a good alternative so thanks for linking them.


Thanks again for the tremendous service you are providing!

As far as politics, well I am certainly learning fast on my aching back, that the mattress industry, at least as expressed through most large retail outlets, also has its share of politics, corruption and even scoundrels. Alas.

I did check up savvy sleep yesterday at a nearby retail outlet… their 3-layer firm, medium dunlop topped with softer talaley felt quite nice, tho as you suggested they are pricey.

One point they made was to not put such a mattress atop my existing albet still quite new box spring, as I was thinking to do, because the latex needs to breathe and the box spring wouldnt allow that. Hmm…so must I now also budget in for a base with wood slats?

I haven’t yet visited Healthy Back, they evidently have some technogel sleep products…I will provide some feedback once I have the chance to get over there.

Meanwhile they also offer something called a celsion layer. This caught my attention as I get, ummm, hot flashes and want some help in diffusing heat. Is this just hype or is there something to it? Would I be doing just as well with some kind of natural wool/cotton blent, or does the celsion actually help with diffusing heat?

Thanks again for the guidance


Hi gfandac,

Latex or other foam mattresses are usually best on a firm slatted foundation as this is how the latex can perform best and is most supportive. In a mattress where the support is “built in” then putting it on a boxspring that flexes can significantly change the characteristics of the mattress. Having said that … there are a very few manufacturers (such as Original mattress factory) who recommend box springs for their latex mattresses over firm foundations. I don’t share their preference and most manufacturers don’t recommend the same.

There are also many people here and even more so in Europe who use thinner mattresses and put them over a tension adjustable foundation where the slats can be made firmer or softer in certain areas. This can also be a very good idea as it helps to fine tune alignment when necessary if the mattress is thin enough that the tension adjustments make a difference. A box spring can’t be adjusted according to individual needs. Greensleep and some Natura mattresses use custom versions of this type of base however they are also available separately … including a less expensive version at Ikea.

It certainly wouldn’t harm your mattress to put it on an innerspring for a while and I don’t see how this could present a breathability issue … although it could present a “best support” issue. While I believe a firm slatted foundation or a tension adjustable foundation is the best choice for a foam core … you could certainly try it on what you have and then change later if it wasn’t providing the support you needed. You may also find some suitable and inexpensive foundations available locally through various outlets with a few phone calls.



Much appreciate the guidance about the box spring.

My last question for the moment…if you are familiar with it, Healthy Back and a couple of other places are offering a celsion layer for cooling/temperature regulation.

Is this also a natural latex product, and, d\o you have any idea if this actually works? Better than just a top of talalay covered in cotton/wool/bamboo or whatever? If celsion works well enough to consider including it, what thickness would be enough to make a difference? If it works, this would be a real plus for me (and other people who sometimes get hot at night).

THanks again,

Hi gfandac,

Sometimes it takes 2 times before I see a question … oops :slight_smile:

Celsion is Talalay latex with a “phase change” material in it which helps to regulate temperature. From all I have seen … it is effective and can slightly add to the temperature regulating properties of a mattress when it is used in the comfort layer. Talalay however is already the most breathable of all foams and it is the least likely to sleep hot.

Part of how hot or cool a mattress sleeps is determined by how open celled the foam is and how deeply you sink into the top layers so even the coolest of foam will sleep slightly warmer than a natural fiber mattress. Certain mattress tickings (such as coolmax and others) are also temperature regulating and can also help with this. Wool used in a mattress pad can also help as it allows air to flow through it and creates a breathable layer between you and the mattress however it can also reduce the ability of some foam to form itself to your body shape and relieve pressure.

All in all … talalay latex sleeping hot isn’t usually an issue for people but it might be worthwhile for those that are particularly sensitive to temperature issues. Its effect would have more to do with how close to you the Celsion was (less or no quilting) than its thickness. It would normally be used instead of an upper layer of regular talalay rather than added to it.


OK, great. It sounds like it is a natural vice petrochemical derivative, then, that could perhaps have some marginal benefit over the talalay. Since from your comments talaley is also not so shabby in managing temps, I’ll go by what sort of premium for the celsion seems to be involved. (also I would guess the celsion would be most effective with a thinner pad/protector over it (?)

If the Healthy Back store has any technogel products, I will provide some impressions on it once I make it over there, sometime in the next 1 - 2 weeks.

Thanks again for all the insight. Still have a lot of checking to do but you have helped me immensely in knowing what to look for and narrowing the choices. I am really looking forward to an improved sleep experience out of this!


Hi gfandac,

I think that with how many of the materials we use are petrochemical derived … we are all pretty much all swimming in a sea of oil anyway … so another drop probably wouldn’t make much difference :).

And yes … a thinner pad would both allow the Celsion to be more temperature effective and pressure relieving.

I’m also looking forward to your Technogel report and I’m hoping that it will show up somewhere nearer me so I can try it as well.


Hi Phoenix: Are there any updates to the original list in this post? We are in Northern VA and are looking to replace a 7 year old mattress, and are looking very seriously at latex.
We visited American Foam Center last week (didn’t speak to Robert, but spoke with another very knowledgeable and helpful employee), but I didn’t know enough to ask about what the layers were in the Dunlop and Talalay mattresses we tried out. Having now read the overviews on the site, I feel a little better equipped to test and ask questions. I do like the idea of going right to the person who is going to assemble my mattress.

We could also get to the Savvy Rest location in Vienna without much difficulty.

I’m 6’1 and and about 200 lbs and my wife is 5’6 and 140. I am a predominately back sleeper but some times on my side, whereas my wife is mostly on her side and sometimes on her back. Just trying to get in the right ballpark in terms of what we could look for and where we can look for it.

Thanks!! This is a great site, and really saved us from making a bad purchase at a chain.

Hi jpwst,

Not at this point. American Foam Center was the most recent addition to the list and I was quite happy to find a good addition and someone who was knowledgeable about foam and mattress components.

If you do come across an outlet that isn’t on the list though and you want some feedback … feel free to ask.

Savvy Rest has some very high quality mattresses that are great for “testing” various combinations of latex but as you probably know they are not so great value when compared to some of the online manufacturer members here that offer very similar mattresses that use the same materials at prices that are significantly lower.

There are some height/weight guidelines here and some sleeping position guidelines here but personal testing is much more accurate than more “generic” guidelines (what I call “theory at a distance”) that are based more on averages and can’t really take into account the many differences in body types, sleeping positions, sensitivities, and preferences even in people that are otherwise similar in height and weight. They also don’t take into account the many possible differences in mattress construction besides just the foam types and layering so these are more for general guidance than a specific “recommendation” for any particular person.

Hope this helps


New Mattress Underground reader here.

While I digest all the useful information on this site, I figure I would contribute by saying that the store Mattress Fame in Gaithersburg, MD is no longer there. The website is still up, but the phone number goes nowhere and there is a 7-Eleven in its place now.

Also, none of the HealthyBacks in the MD area have any Pure Latex Bliss in a firm to try out, but they are currently having a 30% off their floor models if that interests anyone.

Alright, back to researching the perfect mattress.

Hi jal297,

I think one of the challenges of a site like this is to keep up with all the changes in all the markets around the country and I sure do appreciate the members here adding to the information base :slight_smile:

I called Mattress Fame just to make sure that they were gone and I actually reached them. They told me that they have moved. and have a new address and phone number (although the old one still works as well). Their new address is now on their website. Perhaps it just took a while to propagate.

I appreciate this information as well. The Serenity that they list on their site is the firmest of the PLB options but I know that not every Healthy Back store carries all the models that they have on their site. One of them in Lexington for example is apparently owned by Tempurpedic and only carries their mattresses and none of the other manufacturers at all.
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Thanks again for the feedback and I’m looking forward to hearing about what “your perfect mattress” ends up being :slight_smile:


I’ll be visiting some of the suggested retail sites in the DC metro area in the coming week, and will try to share my impressions in the forum afterwards. I do like to reward a firm that goes to the trouble and expense of maintaining a “bricks-and-mortar” presence with my business if I can, especially if I take up their time to demo products and test mattress options. I only wish their price differential, as compared to online and mail-order outlets, could be a little less disparate. In your guide to buying, you stress the importance of “try before you buy,” but if online distribution drives all the quality local retail outlets out of business, we’ll be stuck with nothing but the schlocky national chains, and how then will we ever be able to really test any high-quality mattress options, unless we happen to live near one of the handful of custom manufacturers? I’ll pay a reasonable premium for service and a meaningful warranty, especially for a quality product; of course, the trick is in figuring out what is “reasonable.”

Hi lfranks,

That would be great … thank you. A few others have done the same and this would be very helpful to many others.

I completely agree with your sentiments here and I also believe that a local choice provides a “value premium” compared to an online purchase. I tend to use a difference of about 20% or so as a guideline for what I would consider to be “equivalent value” all other things being equal but of course each person may have their own ideas and a different “risk tolerance” and have a different “value equation”.

There are also many local options (both retailers and manufacturers) that provide great local value and compete very well and even thrive with online competition so it’s not likely to ever happen that online merchants will ever drive these out of business. IMO … online outlets that provide good quality, service and value keep local merchants competitive and help them to do more of what they do best. It’'s also true the other way around because local merchants and manufacturers can also provide options service and guidance that are not possible with online choices. They are just different channels and each can have great “value”. It’s also true that there are many local options that don’t provide the kind of value that they could and the same is true of many online merchants as well. They are all part of a larger market and each has advantages and disadvantages that will appeal to different groups of people (there is more in this thread).

As you mention … the key is being able to define “reasonable” and for each person to know how to define their own “personal value equation”. This involves consumers that are more educated, know which retailers and manufacturers to ignore, and which ones to focus on along with manufacturers and retailers that offer exceptional quality, value and service that is available in every area of the country no matter how they may choose to sell their mattresses. There is an important place for both options and one will never replace the other IMO.

More than anything … they both keep each other “honest” and truly competitive :slight_smile:


I recently went to the Mattress Fame Outlet in Gaithersburg. I wasn’t impressed. I am not one to let appearances dictate my perception of a store, however, both my wife and i left there a little sketched out and itchy (no bugs found). Just did not feel like a clean store and the salesman was constantly trying to lower the price to make a sale. He did not have information or knowledge of the mattress components either.

Hi brettwasbtd,

Thanks for the feedback :slight_smile:

I know when I first called them they were “suspicious” about the nature of my questions (because the types of questions I usually ask aren’t the “norm” for most retailers") and told me they would call back on several occasions but never did. Once I was able to talk with someone there though that realized why I was calling they “warmed up” and were more open about their mattresses. I was talking with “John” and he told me that to the degree that their manufacturers supplied the information they would be happy to provide it to their customers.

Hopefully you were unfortunate and were talking to a salesperson that is not typical there but if this is their “norm” and the information that you need to make informed decisions isn’t available at all (either from the salesperson or their boss) then for me that would certainly exclude them from consideration unless I was able to find the information I needed about a specific mattress I was considering and the mattress was so attractive in terms of PPP (Pressure relief, Posture and alignment, and Personal preferences) and price that it justified the effort (and often frustration) of doing what the retailer should be doing for their customers and finding out the information I needed on my own.

I haven’t seen their store (either the new one or the old one) because I am nowhere near VA but even though I don’t pay a lot of attention to a fancy showroom (which often is an indication of higher prices) … I would at least expect it to be clean.

Thanks again for the feedback … I appreciate it.


I just wanted to chime in with my 2 cents.

I live very close to Mattress Fame and I can certainly echo brettwasbtd’s comments. The store is in poor condition and the sales staff is clueless.

I’ve been there on two occasions to check out the Pure Latex Bliss line.

The first visit ended with the salesman offering me a PLB 11" hybrid model, he did not know which model it was but I later inferred it had to be the Vitality. The salesman also tried to play down the “hybrid” aspect of the bed by intimating that it was all latex with just a bit of poly foam for support. The price on the “showroom” floor was $3500. As we began to leave the price was quickly dropped twice to “special deal” $2499. I later discovered that this is very close to MSRP.

My second visit was several weeks later with the hope of finding a better informed salesman. No dice. This time the salesman was a young man who knew next to nothing about their product. He was dressed suspiciously casual, in shorts I believe. He was pleasant enough and tried in vain to call someone who he said would have answers. After 15 minutes I gave up.

BTW - I was able to get someone from Pure Latex Bliss to tell me that the hybrid foam in these models have a 10% latex component. No info was available on the ILD of this foam however. Oddly enough they responded to my e-mail inquiry by requesting that I call them back (on a Saturday to boot). It seems like they really don’t want to go on record with some of these specs.


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Just an FYI, I visited American Foam Center today. The employee was very helpful and knowledgeable. I don’t believe their prices are competitive with what you might find at some of the “member” companies on this site, however. The salesman told me that as a 150 pound guy, I shouldn’t really worry about a latex beyond the standard 3 inches with a HD foam core.

Their materials are all good though. 5 lb memory foam, over 2 lb (can’t remember exactly) foam core, and he told me right off the bat I could save ~$200 by choosing dunlop over talalay, but he recommended the latter. He actually told me to steer away from memory foam unless I was really passionate about it, because they get complaints about the heat. For a 6" foam core and 3" of latex, the price was around $1,300 for a King. The Cotton Camilla on the BB site is $900 for the same thing. They do have a 30 day no questions asked return policy.