Looking at innerspring mattress

Looking for some input on innerspring mattresses. I’m in the south. Not sure which non-brand mattresses are supposed to be good. I had always assumed non-brand mattresses were less quality. I know at least some non-brand are just mattress assemblers and/or cloners. No R&D done.

I’m a side and back sleeper.

What are supposed to be quality support/comfort types of foam? I was reading on here to go with quality, but wouldn’t know what was quality foam or not.

I’ve read here about avoiding the big names i.e. S brands. But when looking around on the web on Restonic and Southerland for example, I come across people referring to those brands as not being known for quality.

My budget is probably around $800 top. Not sure if any latex or latex on top of springs is in that range. I do know that I don’t like memory foam. Feels like the floor when first get on, or move around on it.

My current mattress is by American Bedding and has pits all around, i.e. 4 sides. I think it is 8 years old and been in bad shape for a while. Did notice on American Bedding website that they say they don’t make products for home use.

Hi jasonsmith,

The first place to start your research is post #1 here which has all the basic information, steps, and guidelines you will need to make the best possible choice.

A mattress is only as good as its construction and the quality of the materials that are inside it and whose name is on the cover makes no difference at all. The “best” brands are the ones that are completely transparent about the materials they use so you can make meaningful quality and value comparisons with other mattresses.

The post I linked has more information about the different types of materials and components that are used in both the comfort layers and support layers of the mattress. The upper layers are the most important in terms of durability and are usually the “weak link” of a mattress so no matter which type of innerspring or foam you prefer (memory foam, polyfoam, or latex foam) … it’s important to make sure that the foam is good quality because all foam materials have lower and higher quality and more or less durable versions.

I’m not sure what size you are looking for but you are probably on the low side for an innerspring/latex mattress. There are many good quality mattresses though in your budget range and the most effective approach to find the best value is to deal with the better local manufacturers or sleep shops in your area.

Once you get to step 3 then if you let me know the city or zip code where you live I’d be happy to let you know about any of the better options or possibilities I’m aware of in your area.


What is considered “high quality” for memory foam, polyfoam, or latex type of foam?

I’ve read through that, but will read through it again. Just don’t know what is considered high quality and low quality with regards to foam.

My bed would be a Full.

Hi jasonsmith,

In very general terms and depending to some degree on the design and on the other layers in the mattress and your weight as well … I would look for at least 4 lb memory foam, 1.8 lb polyfoam (or used cautiously 1.5 lb in lower budgets or with two sided mattresses) and any type of latex (all latex is a durable material). The comfort layers are usually the “weak link” of a mattress and the first layers to soften and break down so the quality of the materials in the upper layers is the most important. I would avoid any mattress that had more than about an inch or so of lower quality or unknown materials in the upper layers because once you have about 2" or more then they will likely be the weak link of the mattress.

If you are dealing with a knowledgeable manufacturer or retailer they will usually know and educate you about what you would otherwise need to learn but unfortunately most of the salespeople in the mainstream industry have little to no knowledge of how to identify good quality materials vs low quality and they will usually relate price to quality which of course is often not the case … especially with major brands.

I would make sure that no matter where you shop that they are able to supply you with the thickness, type, and quality of all the layers and components in any mattress that you are interested in. Without this information there is no way for anyone to know the quality of the mattress or make meaningful quality or value comparisons with other mattresses.


Is all polyfoam good? I was thinking there was good and crap polyfoam?

Hi jasonsmith,

No not at all. Most if the softening and impression issues that are so commonly heard are from too much lower quality/density polyfoam in the upper layers of a mattress and I would certainly avoid low quality/density or unknown polyfoam in these layers that are more than about an inch or so (usually in the quilting layers)

Low quality/density polyfoam is much more commonly seen than higher quality/density … especially in mainstream mattresses.


Yeah, but I wouldn’t know what was good or bad polyfoam. Are there certain specs to ask for to know if it’s good poly, or are there certain brands of poly to look out for or something? I know people look for certain brands of latex.

I know your blog talks about going to independant mattress stores vs. chains. But I find going that route, best to make sure the place has been there a while in case you need them later. As alot of those tend to close up. Was out of town and did a retail search finder on a mattress brand and drove by, but there was no mattress store there. Looked at a different mattress brand, went by a retailer, and no retailer there. So decided to call the next one, and it went to a residence. Then called another one who didn’t even sell the brand mattress anymore I was calling about.

Has Southerland went to crap? Talked to two retailers who don’t sell that brand mattress anymore.

Talked to one place out of town who delivers where I live for free and I guess they sell alot of Dutch brand mattresses built by the Amish. But I doubt the Amish put alot of R&D in mattress making. www.sleepdutchcraft.com

Hi jasonsmith,

The answer to this is in some of the links in the “read first” post I linked earlier and in my reply to the same question in post #4 earlier in this thread.

You can test for the feel and performance of a mattress in terms of PPP (Posture and alignment, Pressure relief, and Personal preferences) with good objective testing but the durability and useful life of a mattress is something you can’t feel in a showroom and for this you meed to know specifics of all the components and layers including the thickness and density of any memory foam or polyfoam in the mattress.

With memory foam and polyfoam … higher density equals greater durability. You can read more about some of the other factors that affect the useful life of a mattress in post #4 here and the minimum I would look for are in the previous post.

Better manufacturers or retailers will already know all of this and use a more educational and factual approach in their mattress sales (vs a marketing approach) but if you are dealing with someone that isn’t familiar with the quality of the layers that are in their mattress or how to tell then if you post the specifics on the forum I’d be happy to look and see if there are any obvious weak links in a mattress you are considering. If you aren’t able to get the specifications of a mattress from a retailer or manufacturer … I would pass the mattress by because you would be making a blind purchase with no way to know the quality or durability of the mattress you purchased.

Sleepdutchcraft is one of the manufacturers mentioned in a number of posts on this forum and a forum search on Dutch Craft (you can just click this) will bring up more about them. They make some good quality and value mattresses and more importantly will tell you what is in their mattresses so you can verify the quality and make meaningful comparisons with other mattresses.


Thanks. Yes there is so much information here, will have to go back and read through it again.

I’ll probably check out that Dutch Craft then. As the out of town Dutch Craft retailer that delivers for free has been there a while, and have a few different stores in my state. So don’t have to worry so much if they’ll be there in the future. I was planning on getting something soon, so I’ll check out the different Dutch Craft’s and will probably just pick one if I find one comfortable.

I call them to see if they could send me some specs on their different mattresses.

Probably looking at a medium as I side sleep and back sleep.

The mattress I have now is made by American Bedding for a company. And on their site they say they don’t sell products for home use, which I thought was odd.

Hi jasonsmith,

Besides this American Bedding which only makes institutional mattresses (which is probably the one you mean because they don’t make home mattresses) … there are a few others as well.

This one is now owned by Corsicana (and their website has recently expired so I linked to an old version of their site) and there is this one in California as well so its possible your mattress was made by one of the others.

Any mattress is only as good as its construction and the materials inside it regardless of brand but Southerland is still in the top 15 manufacturers in the country. It’s not uncommon at all that retailers switch suppliers.


I decided to just go ahead with one of the Dutch Craft matresses. I was looking for a medium, and they had one that was the closest Dutch Craft to a medium and the retailer claimed it was their best selling mattress and recommended it over their more expensive options. It has 1" latex on top, and I believe mid-grade foam below that. I would have probably liked it to be a little firmer, but figured I’d give it a shot. It is a budget mattress and a non-flip.

I noticed alot of the Dutch Craft mattresses they had there were way too soft. Felt like you were sinking way down into it.

Hi jasonsmith,

I certainly like Dutch Craft because they are transparent about the materials in their mattresses.

Did you happen to find out the specific layering in the mattress you purchased?

In any case … congratulations on your new mattress. I hope you have the chance to share your feedback when you’ve slept on it for a bit.


Didn’t find out all about the layering. Just that the top is 1" latex, and Dutch Craft said the lower layers were I believe the mid-grade foam. I believe they said or the salesman said that Dutch Craft doesn’t use any of the crappy foam in their mattresses. It had more coils than the other Dutch Craft mattresses beside it and the salesman said the coils were 12 gauge.

I know the info sheet on the bed and salesman mentioned they used furniture grade foam instead of mattress grade foam. Or something like that. It also has some bamboo cover or something.

The mattress looks like is around $600, so a budget mattress. The salesman said he sells alot of that particular model, and it had the 1" latex that I liked better than all just regular foam. And with it being more like a medium like I was looking at, decided to just go with it since I didn’t want to spend more money on gas anyways driving around to different mattress stores. Most of the Dutch Craft they had were the super plush that I didn’t like since I sank so deep in the mattress.

The other problem is that Dutch Craft makes several different models, but the retailer only had like 5 in the show room. So don’t have many to try out.

They did have a mattress by Sterling and Thomas that was in the same price range. They had brochures on the mattress and I believe it used the high grade foam. It had some numbers posted, but I can’t find the brochure I took with me. Only thing is the salesman said this brand had a “latex” mattress that they said they sent to have torn into and was told it had no actual latex in the mattress. So they quit selling it.

Hi jasonsmith,

The details of “mid grade” foam depends on who is describing it but it’s likely that their mid grade foam is better quality/density than the “mid grade” foam used by larger manufacturers. Only the specific density though has any real meaning. One manufacturer’s mid grade could be another manufacturer’s low grade foam and could be high grade for another depending on what they are comparing it to so these kind of descriptive terms don’t really mean a lot.

I also haven’t seen low grade foam used by Dutch Craft who as your salesman mentioned normally doesn’t use any poor quality foam in their mattresses but of course I don’t know the details of all of their mattresses.

Generally furniture grade foam is 1.8 lb density and higher so if this is the case then it would be at lower end of the high quality range of polyfoam density.

I doubt that the coils are 12 gauge but they may be 12.5 gauge which are the thickest wire that is generally available and are very strong and firm.

Having even an inch of latex in a low budget mattress is not that common so that’s a bonus as well even though the latex layer is thin.

Overall the odds are good that you did well although it was still a blind purchase so there really isn’t any way to know for certain.

Again the words “high grade” don’t really mean much because they are used differently between different manufacturers. Sterling & Thomas was a brand name made by American Bedding which was recently purchased by Corsicana. They did use some higher quality materials in their mattresses but I don’t know if they have changed since their purchase.


If the mattress would fit your needs dreamfoam has an innerspring with 2 inches 19ild latex. It is in your price range and might be worth considering. I was looking into it but I need to go with something different based on my needs

Is that an online only mattress? I was reading some reviews on Amazon where they said they went from using high quality foam to now using the cheap stuff.

Yea it’s online. I think what you are reffering to is their hybrid latex and memory foam mattresses. The do use a 1.5 lb base but I believe it its a higher quality than some ( would ask Phoenix ) and the top layers are usually what goes first. Regardless I was referring to an innerspring with latex at a reasonable price since you had said you wanted an innerspring. The 2 inch latex layer in the bed would outlast polyfoam.the bed I suggested does not use the foam as a core it uses pocketed coils. As far as other materials in the pillow top I am sure if you call then you could easily get the info

Hi jasonsmith,

The new foam is actually about the same price as their previous foam and is certainly not “cheap foam”. It’s a lower density but has higher performance.

You can read some comments about it in the first part of post #4 here, some comments from Dreamfoam in post #4 here, and much more detailed comments in response to one of the members here who changed their “review” in post #14 here but as Everready mentioned this change was in connection to one of their lower priced mattresses that used polyfoam in the base layers.

Their pocket coil / latex mattresses use a pocket coil in their support layers (not polyfoam) and they would be able to tell you any of the other specs you wanted to know about any of the other layers.

Post #13 here also has some comments about reviews in general which can be quite misleading if they are written by customers that aren’t familiar with all the many variables involved with foam specs or aren’t knowledgeable about the “quality” of the materials in a mattress they purchased.


Ok, thanks. Would be nice if they were at retailers to try out.

But I’m pretty certain I’m going with the non-flip Dutch Craft mattress I was looking at. I’ll have to call them to get all the specs of the mattress. But would have probably liked it better if it cost a little more and had the higher end foam in it. But it’s got 1" of Talalay Latex in the top layer, which I believe will help it last longer.

Problem is you are rather limited to trying out what the retailer has in their showroom floor.

How well does the Latex withstand damage from heat? That mattress I’m pretty much going with has the 1" Talalay Latex on top. I lay down on a heating pad alot on my mattress, and wasn’t sure if the heating pad would affect the mattress foam any with regards to breaking down the foam?