latex mattress concerns

Hello all,

I want to buy a latx bed but I have some concerns…

Have you ever wonder why retail chains rarely sell latex beds? If they are as good as the internet say it is…surely they would be in stock.latex has been here a lot longer then memory foam but there is usually only memory foam in stores. Today I went into mattress firm and they told me latex mattresses always had warranty problems…beds would have indents. So thy stop carrying them. I thought from reading here and sleeplikethedead, that they were most durable. Another problem is cost…they would be out of scoop for the avg buyer. Well…temperpedic beds are just as expensive if not more. So I couldn’t believe that it was due to cost. I am kinda lost. I had high hopes for latex but now I’m questioning it. Help!

Hi superboy,

There are several reasons for this but the main ones include that latex is a material that is available to any manufacturer so the major brands (that tend to be sold in chain stores) don’t use it as much because they can’t build a proprietary “story” about it that make them appear to be different as easily. It is also a more costly materials so with the margins that the major manufacturers and mainstream stores require throughout the supply chain it would put them out of the market because it would be too easy to find competing manufacturers that have better quality and value. It’s also because they tend to sell the latex “hot story” regardless of the truth of the story and the latest “hot story” is gel memory foam and with the success of Serta all the majors are promoting their version of similar materials to cash in on the phase and there isn’t room on the floor or profitable enough in terms of turnover for latex at the moment.

Having said that … all of this goes in cycles and you will also see times when they are more available in the major stores (Sleepy’s for example used to sell Pure Latex Bliss but it probably wasn’t turning over as fast as gel memory foam mattresses so they stopped carrying it).

At the latest show in Las Vegas some of the tier two manufacturers are introducing some latex mattresses and some of the majors are including more latex in their mattresses as well which will show up in mainstream stores but gel still “rules” the stories and latex is usually in combination with other materials so that they can call it a “proprietary design”

This is a typical comment made by salespeople to convince their potential customers that they are carrying “better” mattresses … when of course they aren’t. Of course they are only justifying what they have available and their comments don’t reflect reality. Latex is the most durable foam material available.

Latex is certainly a more costly material (although some memory foams and other materials are in the same range) but comst and “value” are not the same thing. A mattress that performs better or lasts longer is worth the extra cost for many people that can afford them and look more for “value” than cost.


Hi phoenix,

Thanks for your reply. I am still not convinced that just because the “turn over” isnt as good for latex, main retail stores completely discontinued them. If margins arent there, sell them at higher prices. Memory foam can be insanely expensive. And how come there are plently of internet stores, with one or two locations that carry them? How are they expected to make profits off latex? If they can profit why cant large chains? Latex could be made with blends that make it "proprietary " to a particular company. Spring mattresses has been here longer than latex and they are still in the game.

Hi superboy,

Post #12 here and post #404 here may be worth reading.

At the moment and no matter what the reason … for the most part you won’t find an all latex mattress at a chain store so if that’s what you were looking to purchase you would need to look elsewhere.


I wondered the same thing. After doing much research I agree with everything Phoenix said. I have been to a dozen mattress stores in the last few weeks and was astounded at some of the things get came out of sales peoples mouths. I also wonder if marketing plays a role in it. It is worth your time to search a latex bed and try it out. They are harder to find but in my opinion it is worth the effort.

Hi all,

I just placed an order from Arizona Premium Mattress Co. (talked with Greg ) and got the QUEEN PLUSH TALALAY LATEX MATTRESS.
Shipping is around $150 ( I live in Florida)
You can get 2 pillows or 5% discount. (I picked the pillows)

Expect a review with pictures in the coming month!

Hi superboy,

You certainly made a great quality/value choice and I’m looking forward to your feedback when you’ve had the chance to sleep on it for a bit.

Congratulations on your new mattress :slight_smile:


I’ve been reading messages on this forum for a while and just decided to become a member. Thank you for all the wonderful information.

My husband and I bought a Stearns & Foster “luxury firm” mattress with pillow top a few years ago, and of course it’s now developing soft spots. We’ve never had a regular coil mattress of any kind last more than maybe three or four years. I am 5 feet tall and weigh just under 100 lbs., so I’m not putting a huge amount of weight on the coils. I recently had a flare-up of inflammation in my lower back, probably not because of the mattress (my SI joint flares now and then from overuse), but the mattress certainly does not help. I started waking up stiff, with worse lower back pain in the morning, none by afternoon. Swimming, PT core exercises etc. have been helping heal the inflammation, as well as writing while walking at my TreadDesk. But also, on impulse and out of desperation, I bought a 3 inch Novaform gel bead memory foam mattress topper at Costco. The memory foam instantly helped my back. The pain started to abate after one night.

However, the memory foam off-gassed in a terrible way. Frankly, it stinks. Even through all the linens, the smell got onto my skin and onto our cats’ fur. I realized that I had made a hasty purchasing decision, so I did some quick, intense online research on mattress toxicity. I ended up ordering a 3-inch Fast Response ActiveFUSION latex mattress topper from Pure Latex Bliss, through a local independent retailer. The fast response felt much better on my back than the slow response, which I also tested. The salesperson said that the mattress I chose is Oetek-certified (I believe, but correct me if I’m wrong, that the Oetek certification for Talalay latex is more rigorous than a Certi-PUR certification?) and so natural that it’s practically “edible.” He’ll be ordering the King-size topper this morning (the tester is a twin) and it should be in by Friday.

However, when I checked the Pure Latex Bliss web site, the fast response latex is NOT listed as “natural,” even though the Talalay latex inside the topper is, I presume, Oetek certified and free of toxic chemicals. But what does Pure Latex Bliss do to the latex to make it “fast response”? I emailed the company, got a message back that they are happy to talk to me on the phone, so I left a phone message this morning and await a callback. I’m now wondering why they couldn’t just tell me in email that the fast response is just as natural as the “natural”? I’d like to make a decision before the salesguy actually places the order in a few hours.

If you happen to see this and can offer any quick advice, I will be grateful. Thank you!!

Hello Phoenix, Superboy, Sleepytime, and others:
Almost two years ago my wife and I bought a latex mattress, from the good people at Beloit Mattress Company (Wisconsin), and with the advice of Phoenix and this site. I’ve meant to post a review but deliberately waited a long time, so that any recommendation of mine is backed by lengthy experience with the product. Well I now I feel safe in saying that we could not be any happier with our purchase.

Some details: I am the much more troubled sleeper, and had been struggling-and I do mean struggling-for some time. Before this, we bought one of the standard brands (queen size) for about 1200, and inside of a month I knew we had wasted our money. I am not saying the latex mattress is a cure-all! I still have the occasional rough night, which is mostly due to creeping aches, and a couple of inconsiderate cats. Also, I do think Superboy’s concern about rutting is a reasonable one, though it is not worse on this mattress compared to any other I have slept on. What I think distinguishes this mattress is the way it recovers: a simple rotation makes it feel like the day we bought it. We got a king, which is not quite a square, but close enough to allow a 90 degree turn every 2 or 3 weeks. An inch or so hangs out over the box spring sometimes, but again the fresh mattress feel is just fantastic. (I am sure Phoenix will comment on the wisdom of this rotation scheme.) So then, I do recommend getting a bigger bed than one might think they need, and to rotate frequently. Because a troubled sleeper can never have enough fresh mattress. Even when brand new, I don’t remember any kind of unusual odor. The temperature it ‘keeps’ while we sleep is great. I tend to run hot and my wife cold, but neither of us has any complaints. I am a stomach sleeper (natural disadvantage), while my wife is more of a side sleeper. But again, both of us are very happy.

Any drawbacks to this latex mattress are not related to the actual sleeping. First, purchasing it took some work. We had to travel about 70 miles to Beloit. Quite understandably, they would not deliver at such a distance, so that part was do-it-yourself. It is heavy and moreover lacks wood or other hard structure, so it is cumbersome to move. And the price tag of approximately two grand is intimidating, but well shy of the tempurpedics. And that is how desperate I was for some decent sleep, that I was ready to pay four or five grand if that’s what it took. But then we found this site…

Bottom line for me and the wife is that this mattress is the best we’ve ever owned, and incidentally the most successful and rewarding major purchase we’ve made in the last several years. Thanks to Phoenix for making us intelligent shoppers, and thanks to the Beloit Mattress people for their quality product.

Thank you for the information, and I’m so glad latex has worked for you. What type of latex did you choose and what company? I just spoke to someone at Pure Latex Bliss, and she told me that the fast response ActiveFUSION 3-inch topper, the one that I ordered, is Oetek-certified (forgive my misspelling) - the entire product, not just the latex inside. That means while it does have chemicals in it, they are not toxic. The chemicals used are listed on the company web site under “Blissipedia” articles. The activefusion topper has beads in it made of acrylic and wax to “temperature regulate” the topper. Now, this is not ultra-natural as I would have preferred, but the one I chose apparently does not off-gas any toxic chemicals, and my back pain went away when I lay on it. I was advised that the ultra-natural Pure Latex Bliss topper will feel denser than the fast response one, is more expensive, and I don’t have an opportunity to test it in the store anyway. So I’m going with the fast response one, keeping in the back of my mind that eventually, we may have to switch out the topper and mattress anyway, since the mattress is a regular pillowtop coil mattress and will probably continue to develop more soft spots, in which case we will switch out the whole thing, probably for a full latex mattress (the natural Pure Bliss latex mattress felt wonderful in the store and was running about $2,200).

Hi sleepytime,

It’s not the coils that are the problem … it’s the foam above the coils. A mattress breaks down from the top down and in most cases the coils themselves will far outlast any lower density polyfoam above them.

The PLB toppers are mostly 30% natural and 70% synthetic latex which is a great quality material but not natural (although they do have “all natural” toppers but they are not usually the ones that the large majority of retailers carry). Oeko-Tex is an independent certification while CertiPur was put together by polyurethane manufacturers themselves. You can see the Oeko-Tex testing protocol here and the CertiPur testing protocol here. Many of the specific tests are similar or the same but overall Oeko-Tex is more stringent yes.

ADMIN NOTE:*Always check CertiPur site for the latest guidelines available

You can read more in post #2 here about the differences between 100% natural Talalay and blended Talalay and post #6 here has more about the different types of latex in general.

All the latex you are likely to encounter … synthetic or natural … is likely to be Oeko-Tex certified and would be a “safe” material. Talalay GL fast response is blended Talalay that has about 30% natural rubber and about 70% synthetic rubber like their regular blended Talalay and the main difference between it and the Talaltech blended Talalay is that it has phase change gel added to the latex. The slow response Talalay GL uses a different blend of SBR (synthetic latex) to create the slow response.


Hi ked,

Thanks for taking the time to share such detailed feedback about your long term experiences.

I think this rotation scheme is the ideal with a king size mattress because it evens out any wear more than 180% turns.

As you mentioned … all soft materials will soften or impress to some degree (the softer the material the more this will happen) but with latex the process is slower and it has less affect on the feel and performance of the latex because it has such a high resiliency and rotating it will also give the material a chance to recover.

You certainly made a great choice both in terms of the type of mattress and the manufacturer you purchased from :slight_smile:



Thank you very much for the great information! I see I’ve got a lot to learn about latex and latex blends - and everything else as well. I ordered the latex blend fast response because it relieved the pain in my lower back. I’d like to have a purely natural product, but I’m most concerned about toxic chemicals and off-gassing, and from what you’ve said, it appears that the blended latex is still a high quality and safe topper.

Also, since the polyfoam above the coils on our underlying mattress is starting to break down, I’m guessing the blended latex topper will help us for a limited time before we have to look into replacing the whole bed, at which time I’ll have to do some intense reading on this forum!

I believe you’re in my area (?). I live near Gig Harbor, WA, and bought the latex topper at It’s Bedtime in Silverdale.

Anjali (Sleepytime)

Hi Sleepytime,

A topper usually works best to add some extra softness or pressure relief when a mattress is too firm and has no soft spots because a topper can just “follow” the dips or soft spots in the mattress underneath it. It may have a partial or temporary effect but in some cases adding more soft foam on top of a mattress where the comfort layers have softened can make an alignment issue worse.

The only real “fix” for a mattress where the comfort layers have softened is to remove the offending foam and replace it with better quality materials.

There are a few other options in post #4 here that may be helpful with a mattress that has developed soft spots or is sagging.



Thank you so much again. I’m going to call the store about switching the latex topper for an actual latex mattress. The topper is in transit to the store. They do have latex beds in stock. Our regular coil mattresses have never lasted longer than 4-5 years even when we spend through the nose. I want to be able to test the bed before buying. I will search the posts but if you can point me to any specific posts about the best latex beds, I would be grateful. Also, the mattress will not be on a foundation. We have a captain’s bed frame, drawers on the bottom with three wooden slats on the drawers, attached to the frame. So we buy only the mattress.


Hi Sleepytime21,

This is unfortunately the norm in far too many cases and it’s because of the use of lower quality materials above the coils. There are some people who cut open their mattress and do “mattress surgery” and rebuild their mattress by replacing the layers that have softened or broken down and in almost all cases (including with premium mattresses) it’s the upper layers that have broken down. The best way to avoid this for those who prefer the feel and performance of innersprings is to make sure you know the quality/density of the materials that are used above the innersprings which usually means dealing with smaller independent manufacturers who fully disclose the details of all the layers in their mattresses so a consumer can validate that they are good quality and durable materials. Other options include component mattresses such as mattress/topper combinations or a mattress with a zip cover where individual layers can be replaced or having a local manufacturer rebuild the mattress by replacing the foam layers that have softened or broken down.

The “best” latex mattresses for each person are the ones that best suit your individual needs and preferences and personal value equation. It depends on the design and the type of latex you prefer. Some of the better options and possibilities in the greater Seattle area are listed in post #2 here. The key is always to deal with retailers or manufacturers that are open about the materials in their mattresses so you can focus on materials rather than brand names.

The Pure Latex Bliss mattresses and toppers at Its Bedtime use good quality materials but the toppers only come in versions that use very soft latex which is not always the most appropriate choice and PLB toppers may not be the best value.



Thank you very much again! After testing six different Talalay and Dunlop latex mattresses in the store, I bought the Pure Latex Bliss Nutrition. The topper had already been ordered. The store owner said he would be able to sell it to someone else, or he would sell it to me at 50% off if I felt I could use the topper with the new mattress. The sample topper felt fabulous with the mattress, and the mattress felt fabulous on its own, so I accepted his deal and bought both. (I also tried the topper on the firmer mattresses but I could feel the hard surface of the mattress underneath).

Fingers crossed - hope the Nutrition feels good when it’s delivered… If not, we can exchange it for another one. I appreciate all your help.


Hi Sleepytime21,

Congratulations on your new mattress :slight_smile:

The Nutrition is one of the more interesting mattresses in the lineup and has a firmer top layer over a softer second layer (what I call a dominating layer) with a somewhat unique “feel”.

I hope you enjoy your mattress and the topper and I’m looking forward to your feedback when you’ve had the chance to sleep on it.


Its been 29 days since I ordered my Mattress. It just came in this evening!
It took 4 weeks since i order til i actually got it.
I believe on the website and Greg over the phone told me that it would take 3 weeks. It took 1 week longer.

If you do purchase from Arizona premium mattress co. they do take a lot longer then other companies like SleepEZ.

I shall review this bed ( with picture) in the coming days.

Hi superboy,

Thanks for the feedback and I’m glad to see you received it even though it was a little longer than you expected.

They do have lower prices than most other similar mattresses but as you mentioned their waiting time is also a little longer and on occasion they take a little longer than they expected (depending on their volume) but that’s one of the “tradeoffs” of buying from them.

I’m looking forward to your feedback when you have slept on it for a bit.