Latex Mattress Choices

I have been researching mattresses for the past month ever since my $300 Ikea memory foam mattress has sagged. In the past week I have narrowed my options down to a couple choices for queen sized Latex Mattresses:

Ultimate Dreams

While I have the ability to afford mattresses up to $2500, the Ultimate Dreams is very tempting due to its $600 price tag. This would allow me to get a new foundation as well as sheets, comforter, etc… rather than just a mattress. I have read many, if not all, of the searched “Ultimate Dreams” and understand that it is one of the best quality/value for the price. With that said I (moreso my mom who is helping pay for the mattress, Poor college student :D) is skeptical of low priced mattresses because of the “You get what you pay for” arguement. Seeing as the company has not been around for a long time, is it fair to really judge the longevity based on its materials? And how long would it be before it began to sag? (I see it as cost per time. 5 years for $600 > 15 years for $2500)

Secondly, Because I would be able to go up to $2500, would a 100% natural Latex mattress be a better choice in the long run? I am having trouble deciding between tranquility, sleepez, and cozypure as there are no models that I know of around the San Jose Area.

Ill keep it short for now, and will ask more questions if I think of any.


Hi tsawyer,

Yes … as a matter of fact it’s the only way to make a reasonable estimate of the durability/longevity of a mattress. The label on a mattress, its warranty, or any stories that are attached to it has little to nothing to do with how long a mattress will last. In the case of the Ultimate Dreams … they have been making mattresses for about 14 years (although their Amazon site is not that old) and while that’s not an “old timer” in the mattress industry where many manufacturers have been in business for decades… they aren’t “new” either :).

The idea of “you get what you pay for” is sometimes true and sometimes it isn’t. In an apples to apples comparison between mattresses that are similar in terms of materials and components … you will find that there is a huge difference between good value and poor value in every price range. Of course the goal of the site is to help people find the best value and eliminate the poor value choices.

There is no way to estimate this exactly and you can read about all the variables that are involved in a mattress’ durability in post #2 here. As you can see … how long a mattress will last for you (as opposed to someone else) depends on many factors and sagging is only one of them. All materials will soften (or in the case of fibers compress and become firmer) and how much “room” you have for foam softening before the mattress is unsuitable for you in terms of pressure relief and alignment is perhaps the biggest factor.

Having said that … latex is generally the most durable of all the different types of foam (polyfoam, latex foam, memory foam) and higher quality versions of any foam will last longer than lower quality versions of the same type of material. The upper layers of a mattress are also subject to more wear and tear, mechanical compression, and softening (whether the softening leaves visible impressions or not) than the lower layers so in terms of durability this is where it’s most important to use the most durable materials.

Once you are making comparisons between “good and good” … then the final choices are all about individual preferences and the different options and materals that are more or less important to each person. There is more about these preferences in post #2 here. When you have eliminated the “worst” choices (which you mostly have although most people including me wouldn’t consider Tranquility to be in quite the same “value range” as the options you are mentioning or some of the options that you haven’t mentioned in post #21 here) … then the differences between two mattresses or suppliers are all about what is most important to you … including of course the components, quality, options, and price of each. A longer conversation with each of them is probably the most effective way to narrow down your choices.

Again … there really aren’t any better/worse choices when it comes to personal preferences. A latex core is certainly different from having a polyfoam core and in an apples to apples comparison with polyfoam it is more durable, more resilient, more elastic, more adaptable to different weights and shapes, more supportive, more “natural” and has a different more “springy” and responsive feel than polyfoam but it is also more expensive and for some people … a latex hybrid which has the benefits of latex in the upper layers (which are the most subject to wear and tear and contributes more to the overall “feel” of a mattress) is worth the cost tradeoff while for others it isn’t. There is also more about the different types of latex in this article and in post #6 here which may help you make the choices that are best for you.

There are many latex options in the San Jose area and some of the better options are listed in post #2 here.

Hope this helps


Heres a little background that maybe will help,

I am a heavily involved tae kwon do athlete, thus my body goes through a lot of rigorous activities. My hip joints bother me depending on the season/how much I am working out. So I guess one of my main goals is to have a bed that helps keep my body healthy and in shape (keeping my back aligned for longer and whatnot).

Saving money is always a good thing to me as I can definately use the saved $1500 for other things, but I do not want it to be at the cost of keeping my body healthy and/or having the same problems I have currently (random days I have neck stiffness most likely to my pillow, my lower back is constantly tight and I can feel it during practice).

I also want the massages/chiropractic benefits to last longer, which they do not due to a bad bed.

With that said, do you think that Ultimate Dreams mattress would suit my needs? Or should I splurge and go to sleepez?

Thanks for all your help!

Hi tsawyer,

There are many factors involved in what each person needs and prefers and I think that trying to determine what is “best” for you based on theory or other people’s opinions is not as effective as personally lying (or sleeping) on mattresses with different combinations of materials to see and feel for yourself which works best for you. Regardless of which material combinations are “best” for you … I also think it’s important to use the best quality of materials possible in each budget range (which determines durability and how long a mattress will maintain its initial performance and the comfort and support which was the reason you purchased it).

There are several parts to healthier sleeping which of course can help your body recover more completely from stress and even injury and can lead to deeper and more healing sleep.

First is good alignment to keep the spine and joints in their “neutral” and least stressed position. This is primarily the function of the deeper layers of the mattress in combination with the thickness and softness of the comfort layers. Thinner comfort layers will put you closer to the support layers of the mattress which will “stop” the heavier parts from sinking in too far for best alignment. Neutral alignment and spinal decompression allows the joints and connected tissues to relax, rehydrate, and even heal.

Second is pressure relief which encourages good blood flow to the muscles and joints and outer tissues of the body. This is the function of the softer upper layers. In many cases … younger or more athletic people often prefer slightly firmer or thinner layers here which can provide more freedom of movement and a feeling of being less “in” the mattress. As we age our need for pressure relief (thicker or softer comfort layers) can often become greater.

Third is good ventilation, moisture wicking, and humidity control so that you are sleeping in a drier environment which is more temperature regulating and can help to slow down the autonomic body functions. This means that the breathability of the mattress layers and components (primarily the upper layers but to some degree the mattress as a whole) in combination with the ticking/quilting materials and the mattress protector and bedding are all important parts of your choices.

Fourth is the ability to move freely on the mattress which is an important part of healthy sleeping. Most people will (and should) change position about a dozen times or more during the course of the night which can prevent blood pooling, muscles from becoming stiff and sore, and joints and spines from becoming stiff and maintaining flexibility.

Finally the mattress materials need to have the degree of “safety” from toxins and offgassing that you are comfortable with. For some this means using more natural materials while for others it can mean using synthetic materials (often less expensive) that have some level of certification, testing, or a reasonable assurance that the materials are “safe” by the standards that are important to you or that you may be sensitive to. For most people … certifications like CertiPur (in the case of synthetic foams) or OekoTex or Eco-Institut (in the case of various types of latex) or organic certifications (in the case of fabrics or fibers) can be important.

The many variables and preferences between different people means that personally testing different types of materials is really the best way to know which combinations may work best for you and of course some research into the materials themselves can give you some idea of their durability and the type of performance you can expect over the course of time.

Beyond this … you will find different people and manufacturers who prefer the properties or “feel” of one material or combination of materials over another but which materials you choose should always be based on personal preference. Any materials in combinations that are suitable for your specific circumstances can provide the combination of comfort/pressure relief and support/alignment you may need but will do it in different ways and with different “feels”. In general terms you will find fast response foams (polyfoam and latex), slow response foams (memory foam and gel memory foam), natural and synthetic fibers, and innersprings are the primary choices you will have. There is some general information about all the different materials used in the comfort and support layers of a mattress in the overviews in the mattresses section of the site which can give you a sense of which materials may be preferable for you but in the end nothing can replace personal testing on mattresses because your own personal experience is always more valuable as a guideline than any theory or set of “specs”. Once you have a sense of the types of material combinations that you prefer … then if you do choose to make an online purchase you will have a much better idea of what you are buying and it’s benefits.

I (or anyone) can’t make these decisions for someone else except to help you know the differences between the different choices so you can weight the pros and cons of each relative to your own needs and preferences. There is absolutely no consensus even among the most knowledgeable people in the industry about the “best” material for any person or circumstances but there is consensus that no matter what materials you choose that PPP (Pressure relief, Posture and alignment, and Personal preferences) is the “best” way to choose and that higher quality materials will last longer than lower quality materials. I would personally prefer all latex for example because it has the unique quality of being both soft, supportive, and durable and many other benefits that are important to me but this would only be a benefit for someone who could feel the difference between a latex support core and a polyfoam support core and would benefit from the differences and of course whose budget allowed it or for someone who even likes the “feel” of latex in the first place (which certainly doesn’t include everyone). While this may be my preference … others who are just as knowledgeable would argue strongly for the benefits of a different choice or combination of materials or components and some may not even feel or notice the difference between them.

Of course all of this is also assuming that any mattress you purchase uses durable versions of the materials and components you prefer because if a mattress uses lower quality and less durable materials then they can soften and break down much too quickly relative to the price you paid which can result in the loss of the comfort, support, and “feel” which was the reason for your purchase in the first place. There is little value to a mattress purchase that only works well for a short time before the materials begin to soften and break down.

The bottom line is that the one thing that can help you the most is testing different types of mattresses and materials in person to see how you feel in general about the different combination of materials and types of mattresses so you are familiar with the basic types of mattresses that are available regardless of where you end up purchasing (see this article for more about the different types or categories of mattresses).

Both the Ultimate Dreams “latex hybrid” and SleepEz “all latex” mattresses would be great quality value choices (both are members here which means that I believe that they compete well with the best in the industry) but only you can decide which would be best for you based on all the parts of your “personal value equation” that are most important to you.


Thanks again for all the valuable information…

I believe I am going to go with the recommendation (or what I took to be a good recommendation) to go 100% latex, as it seems like It will be the best long term investment for me in both the sense of mental security and the physical product. One thing I’ve learned over the years is that taking care of my body is one of the most important investments I can make for my career.

With that said, there is one thing I am still confused about. What is the differences between the different thicknesses. Is it due to body mass and compression (heavier —> more thickness?). I am 5’7", 130 lb (145 in off season). If my thought process is correct, I do not see a reason to spend an extra $200-$400 in order to have the same performance/comfort. It would be good to know if there is a significant difference between 9"/10" and 13" and then if the 9" and 10" warrents the $100 price difference.

Also, you said that athletes tend to like firmer mattresses, and my coach has also said that a firm mattress is better for an athlete. But all my life I have really enjoyed Plush mattresses (with support of course). I have been considering getting a firmer mattress but am skeptical if it will suit me. I want the mattress that will be best for me as an athlete and my health. That being said, will the firm and the medium/soft provide the same performance for me (I am a side sleeper. I believe I have read that side sleepers need softer mattresses in order for the back to be aligned correctly).

I appreciate everything you do for me as well as the rest of the MU community :smiley:

Cheers mate!

Hi tsawyer,

Although it wasn’t a “recommendation” (I leave that up to each person and their own “value equation”) … it would be my own personal preference … all other things being equal and assuming that my budget comfortably allowed it. The most important part though is that it’s the “best” for you and that you are comfortable with the tradeoff between the higher price and any differences in performance between a latex hybrid and an all latex mattress.

The difference between having 8" of latex and 9" of latex would be primarily the difference between the thickness of the softer comfort layer. The choice here is generally based on body type and sleeping positions with side sleepers generally needing a thicker comfort layer than back sleepers and stomach sleepers needing the thinnest firmest comfort layer of all. There is more about the different variables involved in this section about putting the layers together and different types of construction along with some general body type information here and some general sleeping position information here.

Because every layer works with every other layer and your choice of each layer can affect your choice of every other layer (both in terms of thickness and firmness), mattress layering can be quite complex if you go into too much detail and it’s generally best to just have a general sense of the different options and their effect so you can have a more meaningful conversation with the manufacturer rather than feeling like you need to design a mattress yourself. Most manufacturers will have a set of “average” recommendations based on your basic information (which would be suitable for most people) and if you have some feedback from personal testing on mattresses that are similar they can easily take that into account as well.

In general … most people would be fine with 8" - 9" of latex (depending on the thickness of the comfort layer they choose). there is more about the benefits of a thicker mattress and when it may be a good idea (mostly for much heavier weights) in post #14 here.

The goal of a mattress (and there is more about this in the sections I linked to earlier) is to provide the best possible combination of softness/thickness in the upper layers (for pressure relief) and firmness in the deeper layers (for support/alignment) that provides the best balance between pressure relief softness and alignment/suppport firmness for the individual person. Different body types and sleeping styles need different combinations. “Plush” pressure relieving layers may be a good option but this can still be over firmer support layers so a mattress can be both “plush” and “firm” at the same time. In general … softer/thicker comfort layers will provide a deeper pressure relieving cradle and you will sink deeper into the mattress while thinner/firmer comfort layers will provide a more shallow cradle (less pressure relief) and a feeling of being more on the mattress than in it. Different materials also play a role in this with memory foam being a more “in the mattress” and motion restricting material and latex being a more “on the mattress” and resilient feeling.

Because you are lighter than average weight … you won’t need the same degree of firmness for support as someone who was heavier (you won’t sink into softer layers as much) but you may need softer comfort layers. Side sleepers don’t need a “softer” mattress as much as they need thicker/softer comfort layers than the “flatter” sleeping positions so that the “gaps” in the side sleeping profile are filled in better and the pressure points are supporting less weight. The deeper layers can still be firm for support and “stop” the heavier pelvis/hips from sinking in further than they need to. Because all of this can vary with the different options that each manufacturer has available … once you know the basics … then a conversation with them which takes into account their greater knowledge of the specific layers and components they have available and their recommendations for someone of your body type and sleeping positions is generally the best way to make a decision about which of the layering combinations and components that they offer would be best for you.

The more personal testing you have done with different layering combinations … the more they can tailor their suggestions (within the limits of the options they have available) to your testing instead of more standard recommendations that are based on “averages” (which work well for most people may not take into account any unique needs and preferences you discover in your testing)


Thanks again for the reply!

I have one more question, do you know what the difference is between these two mattresses?

Natural 9000 9" -

8" natural latex -

The two mattresses share the same 3 layers, so I assume that the missing 1 inch is from the covering? How much does that affect the feel? I am interested because there is a $400 price difference between the two.


Hi tsawyer,

These types of questions are usually better answered by the manufacturers themselves on a phone call (they are always much more knowledgeable about the specifics of their own mattresses than I am) but the basic differences are as follows …

SleepEz Special:

Has two 3" layers of 10% Natural Dunlop in the bottom two layers that can be selected for firmness. These layers can be “split”

Uses a 2" layer of 100% natural Talalay in the 8" version (a more costly material than blended Talalay) in the comfort layer. It’s recommended that this layer be a single layer because the cover is unquilted and you may feel the split otherwise.

Uses a stretch knit cover that is unquilted.

It is a “special” and has a lower profit margin so the 5% Mattress Underground discount doesn’t apply (you get a “pillow bonus” instead

SleepEz 9000:

Uses your choice of either 100% natural Dunlop (same as the special) or blended Talalay (not available in the Special) in the bottom two 3" layers. Like the special these layers can be “split”. The different materials available provides more layering options.

Uses your choice of 100% natural Dunlop or blended Talalay in the top 2" layer (the special uses the more costly 100% natural Talalay and you can read about the differences between different types of latex in this article). The top layer can be split as well because this mattress comes with a wool quilted cover which will even out the feel of the split top layer.

Has a cotton cover quilted with wool (a more costly cover).

Forum members receive a 5% discount on the mattress.

Hope that helps


This information is very helpful. I was having a difficult time finding relevant and detailed information until I found The Mattress Underground. I’m still researching but I am leaning toward a SleepEZ 9000 or 10000. I’m not sure the SleepEZ Special would work since my wife sleeps on her side.

Phoenix, thanks to you and the members for all the great information.

Hi tk35,

Your very welcome … and thanks for the kind words :slight_smile:

SleepEz are great to talk to and they will give you some good guidance about matching their mattresses to your body type and sleeping positions.


Hello, I found your very helpful site today, thanks very much for this! I am pretty sure I want to get an all Latex mattress for my platform bed, which I intend to purchase at RoomandBoard in NYC. I live in Jersey City. I lived in Europe for a long time and always slept on foam there and had a platform bed without a box spring. I much prefer a firm sleep. Before I found your site, I had looked at Room and Board’s latex and foam mattresses. I was happy to read on here that Room & Board’s mattresses are considered good, but I found them quite expensive and wasn’t sure if they were worth the high price tag. I am willing to pay if I feel it really is better quality, but you mentioned on here that they are perhaps not the best? Do you think I am better off looking at alternatives such as Scott Jordan or Bond Bedding in Jersey City? I wanted to check out Bond Bedding because they are supposed to be right here in Jersey City but their website would not work for me. I am wondering if they might have been affected by Hurricane Sandy or have gone out of business.

Hi nj mattress buyer,

the better options I’m aware of in your area are listed in post #7 here. For most people… the last group of 5 would be the place I would start.

Any mattress is only as good as the quality of the materials that are in it. In the case of RoomandBoard … some of their mattresses are what I would consider to be 'better than average" in terms of value but may not be in the “best value” range and their memory foam and polyfoam mattresses tend to use lower quality/density foams so their latex mattress would have the best value IMO. I think there are better options in the area.

My comments about the others you mentioned are in the post I linked. Scott Jordan is in the last group of 5 so I believe they are certainly worthwhile including in your research (NOTE ADDED: They are now a member of this site as well).

I checked the links for Bond Bedding and like you I either came up with a “forbidden” message or a “not found” message. I also called and their phone number is out of service so it’s probably safe to assume that they are no longer in business unfortunately. This must have happened quite recently and I’ve updated the post to indicate this and will delete their listing if I can confirm it. Thanks for letting me know.


Thanks for your rapid reply Phoenix. I will update when I decide what to purchase.

Phoenix - thank you for such incredibly insightful information, and making my choice of a new mattress much easier!

Thank you for the great info. My husband and I are in great need of a new mattress. We are currently on our 3rd CalKing and still can’t get it right…hoping to get some insight from you.

We are looking for a great mattress that is on the more natural side. It doesn’t have to be 100% organic but I can’t bring myself to buy something that will off-gas chemicals in my house for 2 weeks. My husband is 245 lbs, I weigh 125 lbs. so the weight discrepancy is rough for us. Currently, we both wake up with terrible neck, back and just general body pain. We both wake up all night long to shift positions due to painful pressure points on our shoulders and hips. I used to be a side sleeper but now I will take any position I can get comfortable in. My husband used to be a stomach sleeper but is now on his side more due to comfort battles. We have both always slept on a firm mattress due to his lower back issues and past surgery and my belief that more support is better. I am beginning to think that medium is a better call for us.

With all that being said…here are my questions:

  • we live in orange county. where should we go to test out mattresses? do you know of any local brands here? LA is an easy drive for me if you don’t know of anything in OC.
  • what is the best type (in terms of material) of mattress for us? I presume Latex?
  • we have down and wool allergies in this house so i need to avoid those materials.
  • is the new tempurpedic line worth waiting for? i have always wanted to try foam but i am really hesitant due to the chemicals/ health risks.
  • ever heard of Keetsa (san francisco based co.)? thoughts on them vs. Saatva?

Any help here would be greatly appreciated. I can’t go on for one more week without a full nights sleep and this terrible back pain.
Thank you!

Hi bubbles,

The first place I would start your research is the tutorial post here which has all the basic information, steps, and guidelines that can help you make the best possible choices that are most suitable for you and based on the criteria that are most important to you (regardless of whether the same criteria would be important for someone else). They will also help you learn how to avoid the worst choices and make more meaningful comparisons between mattresses.

Mattress “safety” is a complex question and each person may have their own answer to “how safe is safe enough for me?” depending on their circumstances and the choices they are most comfortable with on a personal basis. The comments I made to a similar question here yesterday and the other posts it links to would be the same way I would answer your questions about the “safety” of different materials as well.

The brand name on a mattress is not important because outside of careful and objective testing (using the testing guidelines in the tutorial post) to make sure a mattress is a good match for you in terms of PPP (Posture and alignment, Pressure relief, and Personal preferences) a mattress is only as good as the quality/durability of the materials inside it. The better options and possibilities I’m aware of in the Los Angeles region are listed in post #2 here.

This would depend entirely on how you define “best” and on your own personal preferences between materials and different types of mattresses. Any combination of materials or components can be used to make a mattress that is either a perfect match for you or a mattress that would be completely unsuitable for you to sleep on. The specific design of a mattress and how well it matches your specific needs and preferences is much more important than the type of materials. Every type of material has higher quality and more durable versions and lower quality less durable versions so regardless of the type of materials or components that your testing indicates is your preference … it’s always important to make sure that your mattress uses high quality durable materials relative to your budget range and that there are no weak links in the mattress in terms of durability.

As you can see in the guidelines here (also linked in the tutorial post) … Tempurpedic is one of the “major manufacturers” that I would avoid and there are many other memory foam mattresses that use the same quality/durability of materials that are in a much better budget range.

Wool allergies are generally contact allergies so it may be fine to include it as a quilting layer or an inner layer of your mattress where there is no contact but of course this would also depend on what you were comfortable with.

Keetsa is one of many Zinus Brands which is a Chinese manufacturer that tends to make mattresses that use memory foam in a low/mid range in terms of quality along with latex hybrid innerspring mattresses. They have a somewhat exaggerated focus on “green” mattresses which is somewhat odd considering that they use memory foam and polyfoam in their mattresses which certainly aren’t “green” or “natural” materials. A forum search on Keetsa (you can just click this) will bring up more information and feedback about them. There is also an analysis of the Saatva mattresses and their marketing claims in post #1 here and a forum search on Saatva (you can just click this as well) will also bring up more information about them.

Out of the two … which one is the best “value” for you would depend on the specific mattresses you were comparing (and the materials inside them) and the parts of your personal value equation that were most important to you but neither one would likely be my first choice compared to the many other options that are available to you.

The first part of post #2 here also has some information that may be helpful for couples that have very different needs and preferences.


PS: I switched your post to a new topic that included Keetsa and Saatva in the title so that they would be easier for others to find and not get mixed in with a topic about latex (neither of them make an all latex mattress and Saatva doesn’t use latex at all in any of their mattresses).

Well, that’s a good choice to try Keetsa. They are eco-friendly natural mattresses that prevent off-gassing and chemical emission to the indoor air. But don’t fall for it, just because, you saw it under the tag “natural”. Keetsa uses natural materials. This mix of natural components do help improve the comfort and level of firmness. It also contains less chemicals. If you search for the price of natural mattresses online, you might find it too costly. And if you look for synthetic mattresses, you would be amazed to see the cheap price at which, it is made available. But with Keetsa mattresses, you get the perfect blend of benefits from natural and synthetic mattresses. The Keetsa mattresses are neither too pricey nor too cheap. They come in 2 different types. One is truly memory foam and the other is a mix of memory foam and individually wrapped coils. The best thing about Keetsa mattress is that it has come up with some good reviews, especially for people who weigh a bit heavier. You have mentioned that you weigh 125 lbs and your husband 245 lbs. If so, please do rethink about buying Keetsa mattress. I went through some disappointing reviews of Keetsa. They say, if you weigh below 100 lbs, then Keetsa would be a perfect choice. But if you weigh more than that, it is good to try Saatva mattress. Usually, heavier people tend to feel comfortable with medium firm. Saatva makes it easy for the overweight people to sleep restfully, without any effects of neck or back pain. Also, Saatva does not off- gas where they manufacture their products. Saatva only puts in 3/8" of memory foam in the lumbar area. So you don’t have to worry about off-gassing anymore with Saatva mattress.