How to look for and find the best mattress ... for YOU! ***READ FIRST***

Hi gryffin - it might help to give the mattress a little time to break in. I, too, encountered a similar lower-back pain soreness with the Medium mattress for a week or two. And I, too, typically get that kind of soreness from mattresses that are too soft.

However, in this case, it seems that the mattress may have been a little firm initially, and my lower back was being pushed up…which contributed to the soreness/stiffness.

Either way, after about a week or two, my lower-back pain went away - and it’s been fine now for going on two months now. However, should your lower-back pain not dissipate after a couple of weeks, it might make sense then to swap out the latex layer for something firmer.

Hope that helps…

Thank you for the update, Gryffin! Sorry it’s been painful. :confused: I saw you mentioned you were sleeping on a pretty firm bed before at only 155lbs, so that could be a pretty big adjustment. How you do like the bed otherwise?

Sensei, I heard from Zenhaven today, they said the floor is an acceptable base and won’t void the warranty. I am still looking for something to put on my slatted bed base though, as I don’t really want to put the ZH on the floor at any time.

It looks like the photos have changed online…now the bed shows a different quilting? I have reached out to ask what else is different.

TMU admins and experts: thank you for this great resource. As an engineer by trade, I salute your dedication to the facts, and gory details. I love gory details. I hope you do too:

Our mattress (a Sealy Posturepedic ‘Reserve’ Unity Firm on a Sealy split box spring) is 10 years old and starting to show it. So we’re in the market again, and I decided to school myself up.

I think our needs have also changed as we are a decade older as well. While I always seemed to gravitate towards a ‘firm’ mattress, I was biased with the notion of ‘firm = support’. I’d definitely tossed and turned on what I thought were soft mattresses, probably more accurately poorly made. Also had a preconception that ‘pillow top’ meant ‘too soft’, and ‘will develop impressions’. Our current mattress itself wasn’t bad at all, and I have to say we were usually happy to return to our bed after sleeping anywhere else.

My wife and I both side sleepers: a mix of truly side sleeping and what I call side-over (sleep on side with the top leg and body resting down and over (like half on side side/half stomach) if that makes sense. We both have BMI in the high 20s. I’ve had neck disc issues but manage with PT exercises and a cervical roll pillow tucked in my pillow case.

I’m an incredibly light sleeper, my wife not as much. After getting the disc stuff under control, the last few years though I feel as if I rotisserie sleep: regularly shifting from right side to left side, as my should/arm gets uncomfortable (I also sleep with arm partially under pillow). My tossing and turning disturbs my spouse, which I regret.

My wife has also been experiencing some hip/back pain. And I come to reason after schooling here that we’re sleeping on something too hard now, and the pressure points are getting to us. The mattress is also getting some impressions at this point.

I thought that the hybrid spring/talalay might be a good fit for us. We tried several different types of constructions though in our initial testing. We both found the 100% latex to be too bouncy for our liking, and didnt like the feel. We also were on several Naturepedic hybrids in various comfort levels. But my wife experience some real hip pain fairly quickly on a few of them: Im reasoning that her smaller frame didnt sink in enough on the dunlop. I found the premium pricing to mot match our comfort on them.

We commonly agreed on talalay as a better fit. We also both liked wrapped/pocketed coils as the motion transfer is dampered. I hope that helps if Im tossing.

We are in the PA/Philly area and took a trip to Magic Sleeper, and had a really good experience there. While a small shop in a warehousey environ, we had a quality visit and were well attended by the staff.

To my surprise (based on previous incorrect bias), we wound up favoring a Pillow Top: Eastman House Luxury Pillow Top English Hand Tufted. I like the tufting for help in holding layers in place, and my wife found the resulting ‘sectioned’ top to be very comfortable. I liked several aspects of the design and mattress otherwise, and was my wife’s favorite by a long way.

They didnt have all the detailed specs on the model, and it has taken some doing to get them. There was apparently a big mattress industry convention the past week (I think I may have read that here too), so they had a hard time getting answers from bedding industries. In any case, we finally got there, and these are the specs from bottom to top:

2 inches: base poly foam: (high density 1.8 lbs/cu. ft.) 60 ild
8 inches: 6 turn 12 3/4 gauge Leggett and Platt wrapped coils
3 inches talalay in three layers:
1 inch ild 35
1 inch ild 35
1inch ild 20 (top layer)
wool/silk (firebarrier)
organic cotton quilting
The mattress sides are encased in HD poly foam 1.8lbs/ft. ild 80

It took some doing on the latex “blend”… turns out its 97% synthetic / 3% natural (seems like a toke n amount). The Store mentioned that they would have preferred to see 2.5 lbs for the side encasement, and were a bit surprised in how synthetic the blend was. Their experience with the mattress for durability/customer sat has been very positive, and I found them to be open and honest otherwise.

But anyway, those are the specs. I’d appreciate your thoughts and comments.

Lastly, we were wondering about our existing box spring. I was inclined to replace it and start everything fresh. After a query on the brand of the box spring(Sealy, bought with mattress) , and what kind of support the bed had: (we have a queen wood sleigh bed, but I made five hardwood oak 2.5 inch slats -all with center supports for the bed), the store said they think our split box spring is fine (we cant get a whole box spring up our stairs). They’d be happy to sell us one, but didnt feel it was needed. Wasnt really that much in grand scheme for a new one there though (120).

Thanks for your time.

I finally pulled the trigger on a Glideaway Odessa adjustable bed from Rest Right Mattress in Texas . That is the Glideaway top of the line product. RRM was about 20% lower than other quotes (some were also brick and mortar businesses). I would liked to have seen less separation in pricing but from what little info I gathered on RRM, they were creditable. I also got white glove service to set it up. My days of lifting 200+ lb objects are long gone.

Hopefully, the bed and the mattress from APM will arrive in roughly the same time frame.

I went back and forth on adjustable versus conventional foundation/support system. In order to do the conventional approach I would have needed a center support which got complicated if I wanted to elevate the head of my bed with blocks (all the legs would need to be aligned). I did find an innovative solution to that issue at the Sleep Shop in Hudson, NC but decided the adjustable bed was a simpler, albeit more expensive, solution to my problem. The Sleep Shop told me they get calls from all over the US by people seeking specialized solutions to bed/mattress support problems. That may be a vendor worth checking out for TMU.

Thanks for your help. I will let you know how it works out.

Hi joekane,

Thank you for the kind words, and welcome to the forum :).

And yes we love the “gory details” of the mattress making business, are you kidding me!!!

Also had a preconception that ‘pillow top’ meant ‘too soft’, and ‘will develop impressions’. Our current mattress itself wasn’t bad at all, and I have to say we were usually happy to return to our bed after sleeping anywhere else.

You make good points regarding personal biases … typically they are either “inherited” from what we consider trustworthy sources or are built over time from direct experiential data and facts, but the inherited type rarely take into account that we all are different and have different needs and preferences, You are correct that many poorly made pillow tops do end up with surface impressions and sagging. Also “side-over …. Rotisserie” sleep position LOL, I understand perfectly what you mean but I am sure your wife will be very willing to forgive the tosses and turns provided that you look for the next solution to minimize it.

That Sealy mattress was a good mattress and your point about being “a decade older” … this also makes a difference…. don’t we all know that! So yes there have been some substantial qualitative issues and the mattresses that you buy from the major manufacturers, in general, are much lower quality than they were 15 - 20 years ago and the process of continuing to confuse and mislead consumers, make mattresses with built-in obsolescence built into their design, and not disclose meaningful information about the materials that make meaningful quality and value comparisons increasingly difficult is now the norm. Well done going to Magic Sleeper and trying their beds. As you are aware Magic Sleeper are a member of our site which means that I think very highly of them and that I believe they compete well with the best in the industry… I am glad that they guided you through checking out what feels right to you. You are correct that some Dunlop beds can be too firm for some people and I think that your overall direction of the hybrid / Talalay makes perfect sense.

Generally speaking, there is no such thing as a mattress that is “good for back pain” (just like there is no such thing as one mattress that is suitable for everyone) … there is only a mattress that is good for “YOU/Him or HER” back pain and this would be a mattress that keeps your spine in good alignment in all your sleeping positions over the course of the night and would be different for different people. Also, remember back pain can happen when you are out of alignment, and this can happens both for too soft and too firm beds. Unfortunately there are far too many unknowns, variables, and different possibilities involved to be able to pinpoint based on specs (either yours or a mattress) or “theory at a distance” It is not possible to “diagnose” any symptoms you have on an online forum as this is would need a thorough in-depth analysis

Shoulder pressure points and pains while sleeping on your back can come from a mattress that is too firm and puts direct pressure on the shoulders, the shoulder blades, or on the back muscles and can also cause soreness or numbness and tingling in the arms or can often come from postural issues as well. There is a bit more information about sleeping positions and posture this in this article here .

Comfort/pressure relief and support/alignment are the two most important functions of a mattress for everyone so you certainly aren’t alone in this but the only way to know for certain whether any specific mattress will be a suitable choice that provides you with both will be based on your own careful testing or your own personal experience when you sleep on it because different people can have very different needs and preferences in a mattress in terms of comfort, firmness, and PPP (Posture and alignment, Pressure relief, and your own Personal preferences).

Regarding the specs of the EH:

[quote]
“2 inches: base poly foam: (high density 1.8 lbs/cu. ft.) 60 ILD
8 inches: 6 turn 12 3/4 gauge Leggett and Platt wrapped coils
3 inches talalay in three layers:
1 inch ILD 35
1 inch ILD 35
1inch ild 20 (top layer)
wool/silk (firebarrier)
organic cotton quilting
The mattress sides are encased in HD poly foam 1.8lbs/ft. ild 80”[/quote]

As far as I can see the mattress does not have weak links in terms of durability and materials for average BMI individuals (as described in our mattress durability guidelines), but I would be a bit cautious regarding quilting materials and keep in mind that Natural, Semi-Synthetic, or Synthetic fibers: Fiber materials are usually used as a quilting material in the cover and will tend to pack down and form impressions to some degree over time (although these will also tend to even out as you sleep in different parts of the mattress) so I would tend to make sure that any fiber layers are only “about an inch or so or less” (again in practical terms I would use 1.5") to minimize any impressions in the mattress to a level that won’t have a meaningful effect on the comfort and support of the mattress.”

I am not necessarily a huge fan of three separate layers of 1” latex, most times decisions to have so many separate thin foam layers come from managing SKUs in inventory, etc. Most blended latex, especially the two Talalay producers make a 70% synthetic / 30% natural, the 97% synthetic is confusing to me when people are quoting Talalay. The L&P wrapped coils is a very good coil support system. I have to say I am glad they said the split box spring sounded like it will be just fine (especially with your “five hardwood oak 2.5-inch slats -all with center supports for the bed”. Make sure you check out the warranty details for Eastman House so nothing is “voided”, but it is nice to see people give you honest opinions instead of “forcing” one to buy a new one.

Some side reading To help you better pinpoint the cause of the pains and tossing and and turning you are mentioning I’d recommend a bit of side reading of some of the forum posts that talk about fine-tuning a mattress and may help you recognize or “diagnose” the underlying cause of different types of “symptoms”, pain, or discomfort that may be connected to a mattress…

post #2 this is the primary reference post for different “symptoms” that people may experience when they sleep on a mattress)
Post #45 (this is particularly worth reading as well)
Post #2
post #6
post #6
Post #4
Post #7
Post #7
Post #18
Post #136

Please don’t hesitate to ask more questions of us and of any of our trusted members, and I look forward to any updates and finding out what you decided.

Phoenix

Hi johnep,

Wow, congratulations on the Glideaway Odessa Adjustable!!! :slight_smile: I think you are going to love this product, well … at least I hope you do. Good price and the white glove delivery sounds great. I understand the back and forth, and steering away from complications that may occur from each of the added extra steps.

Thanks for the heads up on the Sleep Shop, in Hudson NC, I have heard good things about them, and some of the friends of TMU in the industry speak highly of them.

Thank you again and we look forward to your feedback soon.

Phoenix

Phoenix,

Thanks much for the considerate and detailed response.

We also did a trip to Gardner’s. While a good trip, we did happen to be there for the end of ‘president’s day’, so a touch of ’ sale ends tomorrow’. We spent the most time there on the Naturepedics, but post trip I kind of crossed off the dunlop because my wife had a pretty poor reaction to one and I didn’t really see the value there (I’m sure if you must have 100% organic its a thought). We are reasonable on this front, not "all organic or nothing’.

The EH Mattress from Magic was by far my wife’s favorite, so I was focused on vetting it.

A couple responses for you:

Regarding the quilting:
I believe the mattress has a nominal 14 inch height, and I remember eyeballing it at approx. 13.5 inches with a tape (I think the tufting variation and/or some showroom settling). As we added up to 13 inches with the other materials, I think the quilting should be within your recommended specs.

I am not necessarily a huge fan of three separate layers of 1” latex, most times decisions to have so many separate thin foam layers come from managing SKUs in inventory, etc. Most blended latex, especially the two Talalay producers make a 70% synthetic / 30% natural, the 97% synthetic is confusing to me when people are quoting Talalay. The L&P wrapped coils is a very good coil support system.

Yeah, so I am wondering the same on the talalay. I guess it has to be one of the followiing:

  1. its the ‘all natural’ form of talalay thats speced around 97% natural 3% synth(I’ve seen this described a few places, but you may disagree if such a thing exists) and they misquoted it as 97% synth 3% natural. But while I think this EH model is from the more ‘premium’ mattress range, the 97% natural might be out of whack to be included at this price point). So this may be overall unlikely.

  2. they were quoting some of the other hd foam in the mattress, and not the Talalay

  3. there really isn’t any ‘talalay’ in it.

The rub is how to find out which answer it really is.

Now, Ive seen lots of descriptions of EH models in this general “Luxury English Hand Tufted”) collection, with descriptions of ‘1 to 3 layers of talalay, depending on model’. So that generally matches the detail they gave us on this model. And as you note, they are probably varying up the 1 inch layers to meet different comfort/firmness/price targets across the range.

I’ve also seen some descriptions where there is some hd foam in the quilting on some models in the range, though none was described here.

Thanks for the links on pain points etc. I have read some of those already, but I can go back and have a thorough run thru with your list.

Hi joekane,

Thanks for your new post with additional questions. I totally understand the “Presidents Day” promotion as both a consumer and an industry insider, This is a really important week for the mattress industry, and for the consumers wanting to get the best value for their money. I am glad that you visited one of Gardner Mattress’ shops. As you probably are aware they are one of the Trusted Members of our site which means that They have a long-standing reputable option which means that I think very highly of and that I believe they compete well with the best in the industry in terms of their quality, value, service, knowledge, and transparency.
You make good points about the Naturepedics / Organic, a larger majority of people want to be more natural and healthier but are not in the “all organic or nothing” group.

Regarding the vetting of the EH luxury, I agree with your quilting assumption regarding the height and recommended specs.

About your latex options:

[quote]1) its the ‘all natural’ form of talalay thats speced around 97% natural 3% synth(I’ve seen this described a few places, but you may disagree if such a thing exists) and they misquoted it as 97% synth 3% natural. But while I think this EH model is from the more ‘premium’ mattress range, the 97% natural might be out of whack to be included at this price point). So this may be overall unlikely.

  1. they were quoting some of the other hd foam in the mattress, and not the Talalay

  2. there really isn’t any ‘talalay’ in it.[/quote]

As you lay these out, I really believe the answer is number 1. No HD foam is really ever quoted as 97% natural, so it’s not #2, and I really believe the layers are Talalay in the product. Eastman House brand is owned by Eclipse Bedding, in New Jersey, and they use mainly Talalay in products, they are the makers of Zenhaven mattresses, Pure Latexbliss mattresses, and many others. All of these use Talalay, and the ZH and many items of Latexbliss use 100% natural Talalay (and yes you are correct this is some times specked as 97% NR & 3%). It really depends on how you define 100% natural and whether you are talking about 100% of the ingredients in the final product or whether 100% of the latex that is used in the final product is natural (NR) vs synthetic (SBR) or a blend of both.

There are certainly latex cores (both Dunlop and Talalay) that use 100% natural rubber with no synthetic rubber in their formulation and by “convention” these are usually referred to as 100% natural latex meaning that all the rubber that is used to make the foam is natural but there are other ingredients and chemicals that are used to make the products as well that are part of the final composition.

Which is to say that … any foamed rubber core includes other chemicals or substances that are necessary to manufacture the foam (such as foaming agents, curing agents, accelerators, gelling agents, anti-degradants, sometimes fillers, and others) so the final percentage of rubber in a 100% natural rubber core (outside of any fillers it may include) are generally in the range of about 90-95% or occasionally a little higher, thus people say 97/3%. If you are interested in reading more about NR and SBR rubber in this post about latex.

Having foam in the quilted layer is actually quite common, and is used in pace of polyester fibers so the quilt lasts longer, and the fiber will usually compress faster than foam used in a quilting layer.

Hope all this helps and I’d be curious to find out how you decide to proceed, it is great for all the consumers to read shared experiences of other consumers like yourself who are doing all the needed research and weighing each part of their personal value equationwhen buying a product that so important to their general wellbeing.

Phoenix

Gryffin, did you make it through the transition? Where did you land?

My partner and I, after a good deal of searching, seem to agree that the Nest Bedding Hybrid Latex (firm) is the best out of the box mattress for us. However I would love to recreate this mattress with a zoned coil layer instead. For some reason we feel like Goldilocks in that all the mattress we’ve tried are either too firm, too soft, or both. We are both primarily side sleepers and either our hips sag too much or our shoulders are crunched, so I really believe a zoned bed would help fix this issue. One of the things we liked the most about the Nest Bedding Hybrid Latex was the plushness of first 2" (cover and first layer of quilting). Please could anyone recommend components including a zoned coil system that would be close in feel to the Nest Bedding Hybrid Latex (firm)? I am 5’9" 180lbs (M) and my partner is 5’5" 130lbs (F). I appreciate any help and guidance.

I cannot personally recommend components, although there is a zoned coil base on Arizona Premium Mattress and the dunlop layer could be sourced from a number of suppliers like Sleep Ez. Not sure on the base, quilting, and transition foam, although you could go more all-natural/durable and source latex layers to approximate these.

I’m considering this bed as a side sleeper. I am curious how your partner is finding the bed for side sleeping as she is my size and weight—is the issue too much shoulder pressure or hip sinkage for her?

I want to ask another question about Nest Bedding but cannot find a good thread for it, so here goes…

TMU lists that memory foam should not go under 4lbs to be good quality. Yet the Nest Signature Hybrid transition foam goes all the way down to 3lbs. As a TMU member, none of their mattresses should have a weak link…but wouldn’t this be a weak link?

Earlier in this thread an issue with mold was mentioned on platforms without ventilation. My mattress is on an adjustable base that provides no ventilation that I can see.

My previous hybrid mattress had no problem, though it slept very hot. Should I be worried about an all latex mattress on this base? I have little to no issues with sleeping hot with latex so far but it’s still cool weather. I am in very humid SC.

Also, how do you start a new thread in General Discussion?

Thanks Phoenix,

Well, we went back to Magic Sleeper and did a final run through for PPP with the eastman house. Did another round in comfort levels above and below, but we wound up pulling the trigger on the Eastman House.

It will be delivered on Thursday. I’ll keep you posted but we are hopeful and anxious to start the true test…

Hi tomford4u,

Welcome to the Mattress Forum! :).

I have always loved the image of goldilocks during the mattress buying process, I have done it and seen it so many times with consumers.

I would like to provide a little caution to the thought of “recreate this mattress with a zoned coil layer instead”. Unless Nest Bedding was going to do this for you personally, keeping all other variables exactly the same, you are essentially just trying a new mattress. There are too many variables.

Mattress manufacturers generally try to differentiate their mattress from the mattresses made by other manufacturers and don’t normally try to “match” another mattress that is made by a different manufacturer so unless a manufacturer specifically says in their description of a mattress that one of their mattresses in the same general category is specifically designed to “match” or “approximate” another one in terms of firmness or “feel” and PPP and/or they are very familiar with both mattresses and can provide reliable guidance about how they compare based on the “averages” of a larger group of people that have compared them (different people may have very different opinions about how two mattresses compare) … the only reliable way to know for certain how two mattresses would compare for you in terms of how they “feel” or in terms of firmness or PPP (regardless of anyone else’s opinions of how they compare which may be different from your own) would be based on your own careful testing or actual sleeping experience on both of them.

The coil systems used in Nest and used in other units of our trusted members like Arizona Premium and Luma Sleep are very high quality products. But when one puts up to 4 or 5 inches of high quality comfort layers above the coil system, the zoning effect from the “core” is minimal, if not useless that far below the surface.

If you are so inclined there is more reading about zoning in these links. This article and post #11 here and post #2 here.

Thank you again for your post.

Sensei

Does this mean that a mattress like ZenHaven without coils may be comparable in feel?

Hey Nirvana,

No I wasn’t referencing Zenhaven, I was only making general observations about comparing and matching feels.

Thanks.

Sensei

understood, but you seem to say that “when one puts up to 4 or 5 inches of high quality comfort layers above the coil system, the zoning effect from the “core” is minimal, if not useless that far below the surface.” I am filled with angst becuase the idea of latex is appealing but I have never had a mattress without springs.

Hi joekane,

Nice work going back to Magic Sleeper and going through the PPP…impressive. As I said before, it is always nice for other consumers to read about other consumers doing the necessary research, thank you for that.

And congratulations on the new mattress. Yes, we look forward to the update, but please take some time for you to adjust to the new mattress and the new mattress adjust to you :).

Phoenix