Latex Support and Feel - Subjective vs Objective

I recently made a purchase of a 13" full latex mattress through Flexus Comfort, which consisted of the following layers:

3" Ultra Firm Dunlop - Base Layer
3" Medium Talalay - Support Layer
3" Medium Talalay - Transition Layer
3" Soft Talalay - Comfort Layer
Cotton & Wool Stretch Knit Zipper Cover

At first, the mattress seemed like it might be a little too firm, but after a week I started to really enjoy the firmness of the mattress. Maybe my body got more used to it. It seems to have good support as I don’t sink much into it and also seems to have enough give to make it “feel” comfortable.

This may sound like a strange question and I’ll do my best to articulate it as clearly as I can. I have seen conflicting opinions on what may offer too much softness and not enough support based on either the layers or body size in relation to the support. Do you think the layers offer the support necessary if I am a 70% back / 30% stomach sleeper? I have 5’8", 230 lbs.

Thank you in advance. This is a fantastic forum and you are all so knowledgeable!.

It’s great that you seem to have found a configuration that gives you both sufficient support and comfort, and your personal experience is more significant than what anyone else can suggest in alternative setups. Given that, for what it’s worth I’ll chime in with my thoughts based on your stats and sleeping positions. You’re at a size where many latex dealers would suggest avoiding soft latex (typically ~20 ILD) since you’ll tend to go right through it without much benefit. Medium latex (~28 ILD) tends to work better as a comfort layer for those of your BMI or higher. Your current configuration has 6" of medium and 3" of soft Talalay which I would question as being too soft and thick of an effective comfort layer that could result in hammocking and lower back pain. You however stated that you already felt your setup might initially be a bit too firm and I can’t dispute what you actually experience or how your body reacts to it. My inclination would be to eliminate the soft top layer and put a firm layer (~36ILD) between the ultra firm base and medium comfort layers, but that would clearly be quite a bit firmer in feel with more support than your current setup and it sounds like you might find it too firm. Difficult to predict.


  • Bill

Thank you for taking the time to provide your thorough response. I was a little worried about that as well being that my size, everything I read has me pegged at too soft of a mattress. I know what the hammock effect is in theory but I am not 100 percent sure I have felt it before. If I were in that situation, I would probably start knowing soon if the support is inadequate for my size right? I am sure the tell tale signs would be back pain, right?

Glad to be able to help. You can have someone view you from behind when you’re in your primary sleeping position on the mattress to see if your spine appears to be relatively straight or if you’re noticeably sagging in your midsection. The primary objective of a well supported mattress is to be able to maintain proper spinal alignment, and you’re correct that the likely symptom of sleeping on too soft a mattress will be lower back pain. If you don’t have someone to view your sleeping position you can try to take a picture using a self timer camera setting. Ideally your spine should be a straight line from the center of your neck down to the center of your waist.

  • Bill

You can see what proper alignment looks like in various sleeping positions in the following illustration: