Latex toppers

After having bad results with the 2 hybrid mattresses from Denver Mattress and still not being able to find any local retailers with an all latex mattress, I’ve decided to proceed with getting a topper to see how I like it. If it works out and I want to I can always build the rest of the mattress (support core) to go with it. I will be putting it on my old heavy duty steel spring mattress. My wife and I are both about 5’8", I weigh about 180 and she is about 145. My question, should I go with all Natural Talalay, blended talalay or the same in Dunlop, and what ILD? I would like to get something fairly firm as I’ve been suffering from some back issues due to a too soft bed.
How would a 25ILD Dunlop (blend) compare to a 28ILD Nat Talalay. I want something that I will sink into a little but with good support, that won’t break down quickly.
Any advice as to how to go or who to buy from would be most appreciated.
Thanks many times for your help, advice and all the valuable information here, although my wife is going nuts with the amount of research I’m doing.

Hi bobfrog12,

If you have checked with the manufacturers and retailers on the Louisville list and none of them carry any “all latex” mattresses (some of them say that they carry Pure Latex Bliss which are all latex but their sites may be out of date) then there may not be any in your area. I checked the Pure Latex Bliss retail store finder for Louisville and it says that Louisville Mattress also carries their mattresses although they don’t say anything about the mattresses they carry on their website but they may be worth calling to check as well. If there are no all latex mattresses in your area then the only way to purchase one would be with an online purchase.

While I don’t have any specific suggestions because there are too many unknowns and individual variables that are involved with choosing a topper (including the type and firmness of the mattress underneath it which can also affect the thickness and firmness of a topper that works best for any particular person) … there is more information about choosing a topper in post #2 here and the topper guidelines it links to that can help you use your sleeping experience as a reference point and guideline to help you choose the type, thickness, and firmness for a topper that has the least possible risk and the best chance for success. It also includes a link to a list of some of the better online sources for toppers I’m aware of as well.

The choice between different types and blends of latex would be a preference and budget choice rather than a “better/worse” choice so it would depend on which type of latex you prefer. There is more about the different types and blends of latex in post #6 here and there is also more about the differences between Talalay and Dunlop in post #7 here that can help you decide between them although the most reliable way to choose would be based on your own personal experience.

This would be somewhat subjective and different people would probably have different opinions about how they would compare. In general the ILD ratings for different types and blends of latex aren’t directly comparable but if two manufacturers use the same methods of testing ILD (which they often don’t … see post #6 here) and if the ILD’s are accurate then for most people they would be reasonably comparable in terms of firmness although they will be different in terms of how they “feel”.


Thanks for the reply. I checked the list of Louisville dealers and found that Burdorfs did indeed carry the Pure Latex Bliss mattress. They had 2 all latex (The Nature and The Beautiful) and 2 Hybrids. I’m not interested in the Hybrids so I’ll get right to my questions: The 2 mattresses are basically the same, they both have a 6" Talalay support core and 2 Talalay comfort layers on top. In the Beautiful the 2 comfort layers are 3" for a more plush feel and the Nature the layers are 2". They are supposed to be the same material and ILD. They were going to get the ILD measures for me from the factory but instead got a long explanation of why they don’t give that information, basically that there are too many variations in the industry for these measures to be valid. Very disconcerting since these were the only all Latex mattresses I have tried (Quite nice too). They also have something called ActiveFUSION technology in the upper layers which is supposed to be some kind of gel infused into the latex to help keep it cool. Not sure what that is and wondered if you would know anything about it. Also wondered if you had any info on their ILD/types of latex used (they claimed it was 100% Natural Talalay). I tried to find a website that would have this info but couldn’t.

Hi bobfrog,

You can see the specs of the PLB Nature and Beautiful in post #2 here. They are correct though that the ILD of different types and blends of latex don’t correspond to each other very well (see post #6 here). Every layer and component in a mattress (including the cover and any quilting materials) will affect the feel and performance of every other layer both above and below it and there are so many different “specs” that will affect the feel and performance of a mattress that combine together as part of the overall design of a mattress and that makes one mattress suitable for one person and not another that ILD by itself can be somewhat misleading because it isn’t the only specification that determines the feel and performance or firmness level of a mattress (see post #2 here). Having said that … testing these mattresses can certainly give you a better sense of how you feel about latex in more general terms and can give you some idea of whether you tend to prefer or do best with softer or firmer latex mattresses in terms of PPP.

This is a blended Talalay latex that has phase change gel added to the latex formulation. There is more about Active Fusion Talalay latex in post #5 here and post #2 here.

The Beautiful and the Nature both use Talalay Global’s (which used to be called Latex International) blended Talalay latex which is a blend of about 30% natural latex and 70% synthetic latex … not their 100% natural Talalay.


Thanks for the much needed info. It will help tremendously in making my decision. I will be looking at online options but will probably want to be sure that they honor their return policy (so called 90 to 100 day trial periods) in case the mattress doesn’t work for my back. If you have any input on companies which are true to their policies and which are not, that would be helpful.

The Nature and the Beautiful are quite different mattresses in feel and top layers…

The Nature shares the same core as the Beautiful, but the two layers on top of the core are of differing softness to those used in the Beautiful. Overall, the Beautiful will have a much more plush level of comfort than the Nature and it is more popular for side sleepers than the Nature.

It’s common for producers to not give out ILDs for their foam, as they often consider that proprietary information and it isn’t a gauge of the quality of componentry. Additionally, there is always a “bucket” or range of ILD variance which is allowed when they test a foam for ILD. For example, a foam testing between 11.5-16.5 might be termed a 14 ILD; 16.51-21.5 a 19 ILD, etc. I’m more of a fan of terming these ranges as ultra plush, medium plush, firm, etc. It gives you a better idea if one foam layer is supposed to be softer than the other when you go and try a mattress and gives you an idea of the construction of the product. I can’t tell the difference between a foam labelled as a 14, 15, 16, or 17 ILD, and even with all of my experience I can’t tell what a bed will feel like purely from specs. That’s why it’s so important for you to try out these products in person, as your opinion is the one that really matters. :slight_smile:

The Active Fusion technology in the Ultimate line is a phase-change paraffin wax embedded into the blue fibers of the covering of these mattresses, and is also added into the top latex layer of mattresses in the Ultimate line. It assists a bit with heat transfer. The actual benefits in a finished mattress in a real-world situation, using a mattress pad, fitted sheets and pajamas are probably minimal for most of these phase-change materials.

Pure Latex Bliss does use some confusing terminology when referring to their products. The Ultimate Line (Active Fusion) is a blended latex SBR/NR, but they refer to it as Natural, as there is a natural component in the product. I think this can be a bit misleading, so I refer to this line as their Active Fusion line. Their 100% NR line is termed their Organic Line, but the finished mattress itself isn’t GOTS certified organic. They do use a GOTS certified organic cotton cover, along with wool for the FR barrier and then the latex is 100% NR. I call this their organic cotton cover line.

I hope this helps you out a bit with some information on these mattresses.

Hi bobfrog12,

I’m not aware of any of the companies or manufacturers that are generally mentioned on the site that don’t honor the terms and conditions of their return/exchange policies.


I think I will be going with Sleep EZ on the mattress but wanted to ask how critical it is to get a slatted wood frame base. We had gotten a steel spring base for the Denver mattress when we got that one, very heavy duty.
Could we use that with the latex mattress (bottom layer firm Dunlop). If that is not a good idea can we put wood slats on top of the steel spring base? From what I’ve read it is not good to put the latex mattress on top of a solid platform due to issues with mold and mildew. Is that really that much of an issue. I’d really rather not have to spend another $300 for a wood slatted foundation if not necessary.

Hi bobfrog,

I don’t know the specifics of the Denver Mattress “box spring” you have but I believe they only sell foundations not box springs (that have springs inside them that flex under the mattress). There is more about different types of support systems that are generally most suitable for different types of mattresses in post #1 here and a latex mattress tends to work best on a support system that has little to no flex under the mattress and that has enough surface area and small enough gaps in between the load bearing surfaces to prevent the latex from sinking or sagging into any gaps in the support system over time.

If you have a “wire grid” foundation then there is more information and suggestions about wire grid support systems relative to latex mattresses in post #10 here that may be helpful.

A solid surface platform would be fine in terms of providing good support under a mattress but it also reduces airflow under the mattress which could add to the risk of moisture retention and possible mold or mildew issues under any mattress (not just latex) although it may be fine as long as there aren’t additional risk factors involved (such as using the mattress in a basement or in a more humid environment). There is more about solid surface support systems in post #10 here.