Dormio latex mattresses

First of all, thanks for this amazing, eye-opening site. It’s been so difficult to find the information I want about mattresses.

My wife and I want to buy a mattress, and our primary concern is that it have the lowest toxicity possible. According to what I’ve been able to gather, our best bet is to buy a latex mattress. We’re in Toronto, and I like what I’ve seen at Dormio, because they have latex mattresses (that are only about 3% adhesives in composition, according to the person I spoke to on the phone) and because they use organic cotton covers. After reading a lot on this website, however, I’m concerned about “greenwashing” – what is your take on Dormio?

Also, what kinds of questions should I ask before purchasing?

Thanks so much for your help!

Hi Zeno,

The first place I would start your research is post #1 here which has the basic information, steps, and guidelines you will need to make the best possible choices.

A mattress is only as good as its construction and the materials inside it and once you know that (which is the most important question to ask) you are in a good position to make meaningful comparisons with other latex mattresses which is a popular choice for people who are looking for more natural materials.

Once you get to step 3 then the better options I’m aware of in the Toronto area are listed in post #1 here and a forum search on Toronto (you can just click this) will bring up more feedback about some of them as well.

A forum search on Dormio (you can just click this as well) will also bring up more information about them as well.

Post #2 here also has some links that may help you answer a rather difficult question which is “how safe is safe enough for me” and which can really only be answered on an individual level.


Thanks for the tips and the links. Actually, I had already read most of that info and performed the suggested searches. I was hoping you might have some insight on Dormio in particular, as I saw you had contacted so many Toronto-area retailers and manufacturers. Was there any reason Dormio wasn’t on your list, btw?

I called the store today and asked some questions. In response to the question about the actual latex content of Dormio mattresses, John told me that they are as close to 100% latex as is possible. He said that there are always other ingredients that come into the process; in this case about 3% of the mattress is made of “fillers”. When I asked what those were, he said that one was ash, but that he couldn’t really tell me what the others were. He did say that they were “natural”, however – whatever that means.

I liked the fact that the mattresses appear to be latex, through and through. For example, another “green” company’s website I looked at, and one on your list – foamite – has latex mattresses with a 2 " Koosh core. The Koosh is advertised as green and safe, based on soybean oil, but looking through your threads I saw that it’s basically a polyfoam that is most likely primarily based on petrochemicals with a small percentage of soybean oil content. Dormio appears to be the only company I can find that just uses latex (at least at 97%).

After reading the articles you recommended concerning health risks, I also asked John about the quality of the organic cotton and wool that accompany the mattresses. One of the articles mentioned that cotton can be grown organically but processed in toxic environments, and still be marketed as organic. John said he’d never heard of that, and suggested it would be crazy to do something like that because it’s already so difficult to grow organic cotton.

John told me the mattresses are made in Vancouver and in Ottawa, and that depending on the mattress one orders, that the cotton could come from Peru or New Zealand. The bases for the beds come from Quebec, and I got the impression the wood is treated in “safe” ways, but I can’t remember exactly his wording on this.

So I think I’ll go for Dormio, but: any thoughts before I do?


Hi Zeno,

This is true and in most cases 100% latex refers to latex that doesn’t use any synthetic rubber. All latex cores need various other ingredients in order to turn them into foam such as various soaps, gelling agents, vulcanizing agents, mold release agents, antioxidants, surfactants, and sometimes fillers as well so in the end 100% natural latex is usually about 90% - 95% rubber and the rest is “other ingredients”. You can read more here about some of the other ingredients although the compounding formula that each manufacturer uses is generally a closely guarded secret.

There are quite a number of manufacturers on the Toronto list that make all latex mattresses … not just Dormio. Many of them use the same latex suppliers (often Latex Green for Dunlop latex although there are other good suppliers of Dunlop as well). There is a wide range of latex options available in the Toronto area.

I actually intended to add them to the list when I talked with them a number of months ago but for some reason I neglected to do so (and thought I had). I’ve corrected the oversight and they are now on the list. I would make some good “value comparisons” with some of the other options you have in the Toronto area but they would certainly be a good quality choice.