As background, I bought a “latex” mattress a few months ago without doing my research and to say it is awful would be giving it too much credit. I’m stumbling along right now with a 3" all natural dunlop latex topper from Arizona Preminum Mattress Company, but it’s not enough and I really am going to have to replace this silly thing.
I think I know what I’m doing based on what I’ve read on your site, but I’m not entirely sure. I am what many people would call rubenesque woman, 5"3" and slightly over 250 pounds. I know I need supportive layers on the bottom, especially since I am a side sleeper, and I prefer dunlop latex, but beyond that, I’m not quite sure how to create the supportive softeness I want! Reading through the forum have some ideas, but I could use some help.
Also I’m wondering if anyone can give me some recommendations where to find a small manufacturer in the area. From the title, I live in the Seattle, WA area. I did find one small manufacturer - Seattle Natural Mattress (Seattle Natural Mattress, 100% chemical-free mattresses) and the reviews have been great, but I don’t know anything about him really. I spoke with him on the phone and he really seems to care about building the right mattress for my needs. The standard mattress they sell is 8", which I think may be a bit thin for me, although maybe not given the properties of latex.
Anyway, any help you can provide would be greatly appreciated!
Just in case you haven’t read it yet … the first place I would start your research is post #1 here which includes links to all the basic information, steps, and guidelines that can help you the most.
There are really only two reliable ways to know whether a mattress is suitable for you in terms of PPP (Posture and alignment, Pressure relief, and Personal preferences) which is your own personal testing of more detailed conversations with a knowledgeable and experienced online manufacturer or retailer (see mattress firmness/comfort levels in post #2 here). “Theory at a distance” or the reviews or experiences of other people are never as reliable as your own personal testing or experience. “Supportive softness” is different for each person but your body will “recognize” what it is for you
The better options and possibilities I’m aware of in the Seattle area are listed in post #2 here.
Thank you so much for the information!!! I had read through much of the site, including the posts you recommended, but I hadn’t been able to find options in the Seattle area where I could find the right mattress for me. The information you provide on this site is just phenomenal and very much appreciated!
I did know I was going to have to go speak to someone knowledgeable and test mattress out before buying. While I would really love to have a new bed today (my current situation is pretty bad), I learned my lesson very well this last time around and will take whatever time it takes to get it right this time!
A new mattress is one of the most important purchases you will make in the next decade or so and will have a bigger effect on your overall wellbeing than almost anything else you can buy and it makes sense to “do it right” and shift the odds of long term success in your favor
I’ve been in contact with Slumber East/Eastside Mattress Factory up in Marysville and will be visiting them this evening to try out some beds. But I have a couple more questions, if you don’t mind.
When I spoke with the co-owner, he made some recommendations after gathering some information. I did indicate I wanted a 100% latex mattress, but he recommended an ultracell core with two different ILD talalay latex layers on top for comfort and layered support. He also indicated he only works with talalay latex. I’m actually not sure what ultracell is, although it definitely sounds like it’s memory foam of some kind and not latex.
I have read in various places that dunlop latex is more supportive for those who are heavier, but this gentleman indicated he doesn’t work with dunlop because he feels it’s far inferior to talalay. Your site indicates something different from what I’ve read.
I realize I need to try various beds out, since that’s the only way I’m going to find exactly what’s right for me, but I also don’t want to waste time looking at beds that may not last as long as they should due to the fact that the particular material isn’t designed for a heavier person.
Any help you can provide would be greatly appreciated!
Ultracell is polyfoam that uses a formulation made by Bayer. It is generally a high resilience formula that is very good quality but like all polyfoam it will come in a range of densities.
There are many manufacturers that prefer one material over another but Dunlop certainly isn’t “inferior” to Talalay. Dunlop has a higher compression modulus so it gets firmer faster with compression than Talalay in the same ILD but if you used a firmer Talalay it would be roughly equivalent in terms of support to a lower ILD Dunlop. You can read a little more about the different types of latex in this article and in post #6 here. You can also read a little more about the differences between them in terms of “feel” in post #7 here but testing them in person is a much better way to decide which one you prefer. The mattress in the video was Dunlop although there are also many blended Talalay mattresses that have also lasted for decades.
The support layers aren’t generally the weak link of a mattress because a mattress will soften and break down from the top down so the quality of the comfort layers are the most important part that determines the useful life of a mattress (see post #4 here about the factors that can affect the useful life of a mattress). HR polyfoam is a very durable material and has many “latex like” qualities and is a lower cost material than most latex but again it’s important to know the density and the details of the layering.